Is This What He Really Means When He Says He Doesn’t Want to Get Married?

age_gap_dating_september17_13If you’re dat­ing an older man, have the two of you dis­cussed mar­riage? If he’s a lot older than you are, there’s a good chance that he’s already walked down the aisle once, and if he has appre­hen­sions about a sec­ond or third mar­riage, it may actu­ally have noth­ing to do with you. It turns out that a lot of peo­ple nowa­days are sim­ply choos­ing not to get mar­ried again, and instead opt­ing for just liv­ing together.

The num­ber of peo­ple in the U.S. who are remar­ry­ing has dropped by 40% over the past 20 years. In 1990, 50 out of every 1,000 Amer­i­cans who were divorced or wid­owed chose to remarry. In 2011, that num­ber dropped to only 29 for every 1,000. Mean­while, the num­ber of cou­ples who are liv­ing together with­out mar­riage has risen sig­nif­i­cantly since the 90s. In 1996, there were 2.9 mil­lion unmar­ried cou­ples liv­ing together. In 2012, there were 7.8 million.

It has become a lot more accept­able these days to sim­ply live together—you get all of the ben­e­fits of mar­ried life, but with­out the legal ties of a for­mal mar­riage. If your older man isn’t inter­ested in get­ting mar­ried, it doesn’t nec­es­sar­ily mean that you can’t have a healthy, com­mit­ted, long term relationship.

If you’re set on mar­riage, it might not be a bad idea to try liv­ing together first. A study by the Cen­ters for Dis­ease Con­trol and Pre­ven­tion found that cou­ples who lived together while they were engaged had just as much of a suc­cess­ful mar­riage as cou­ples who moved in together after exchang­ing vows. How­ever, the study also found that cou­ples who lived together but had no plans for mar­riage were less likely to be together for more than 10 or 15 years. But that’s not to say that it will never work. If liv­ing together is what works for both you and your older man, then there’s absolutely noth­ing wrong with it. Mar­riage isn’t always the final des­ti­na­tion for every rela­tion­ship, and that’s OK.


“Sec­ond Mar­riage: Remar­riage Rates Down As More Amer­i­cans Opt For Cohab­i­ta­tion,” Huff­in­g­ton Post web site, Sep­tem­ber 13, 2013;

Sto­bbe, M., “Move-in Before Mar­riage No Longer Pre­dicts Divorce,” Huff­in­g­ton Post web site, March 22, 2012;

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About Isabella

I was never patriotic, so when Independence Day came, the last thing on my mind was to go out and celebrate. I was bored and I was lonely, and though they weren’t my normal crowd, thesse girls were friends and family members who I grew up with. But Diana had her man, Marsha had hers, and my cousin Lisa had her own. I was the only one who was single and my taste was just too high; the kind of men they dated did not appeal to me. I wanted the executive, the entrepreneur. I was 22 and unhappy about my life. I yearned to be in a relationship; I felt I had so much to give a man, and yet I was single. My friends and I waited for cab and I was still second-guessing whether or not I really wanted to go out. While we were waiting, an older looking gentleman driving a blue pick-up truck drove up to us. As he slowed, he said, “Don’t move. I’m coming right back!” He drove off, leaving a trail of his cologne, as he sped away to drop off the construction workers sitting in the back of the truck. Literally moments later, he came back, stopped in front of us, asked us where we were going, and told us to get in. It turns out his name was Keith. After Keith dropped us off, I realized I didn’t want to stay and asked him to take me back to where he picked us up from. He turned, looked at me, and said, “You were the reason why I picked you all up. I wanted to get to know you. So, I’m happy you decided to leave with me.”