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23 Jan

What do these timelines mean for you still waiting for your man to propose?

I get asked a lot of relationship-themed questions given where I work, and one of them is from women with boyfriends who want to know how long to wait for the ring.

These aren’t women who have been dating for two months, but rather women who are in long-term relationships.

Much has changed in the last thirty years, and those in my study are still reporting general satisfaction in their marriages.

There is actually a lower divorce rate now than in the 80s, and what marriage means on a societal level is also changing.

Are these guys patient or just stringing them along? As it turns out, there isn’t a lot of recent research on the courtship length prior to marriage.

Decades ago the statistics ranged from six to fourteen months.

Is there a difference between couples that met recently and those in Huston’s study?

Currently I co-run a longitudinal study of marriage and family development, started in 2008 and ongoing, and the answers couples gave me about their engagement ranged from several months to several years.