Marriage. Oh God...
I'll keep this brief--
The Set up:
1. Myself and Lady-friend have been dating for a couple of years. She's a good communicator with strong intellect and is a very, very young looking 42. I'm 46 and neither of us have ever been married.
2. Last Christmas, she got me to move a ring that my father had given me many years ago to my "marriage finger,(which used to be my middle one, but I digress.) She then chose a piece of her rings and did the same. (I thought nothing of it but came to realise that it was a gesture that mattered.)
3. Last night, in the middle of a conversation she goes right off topic and asks: "So are you going to propose to me before the end of the year or what?" (My fault for dating a woman who values clarity in communication.)
I may poke fun but she is a good person. There's been no honeymoon phase in the relationship. It's grown steadily over two years. There was none of the cliched, infatuations, no on again/off again stuff. No breaks. No arguments. I'm quite happy.
Here's the thing: I don't know if I'm the marrying kind. I prefer work over play. I dislike dinner parties with "friends." I abhor "vacationing." I have strong opinions and I'm unafraid to voice them. Unlike Lady-friend, I'm not formally educated. I'm grudgingly artistic but hate the arts. I prefer solitude. (example: if I move in next door to you; please don't introduce yourself because I'll tell you to get lost. If I don't want to know you, you damn well better not want to know me.) At the same time, I can fake niceties long enough to get by at an event or party but once my patience is gone, so am I. Honestly, the very idea of spending lunch with any adults and their two toddlers makes me want to throw myself out a window. In fact spending time with any people, anywhere for any reason bugs the hell out of me. I can never live up to her standards for social interaction.
At any rate, I just don't know and have never known if I can live up to anyone's expectations in a marriage. Because let's face it, that's all marriage is, isn't it? A whole pile of expectations wrapped up unreasonable expectations.
I feel she's right. I also feel she's wrong. I feel marriage makes sense and I feel it doesn't. If some grooms get cold feet, maybe mine are frozen. I can feel myself trying to fight this off like a bad flu. Just reading it back to myself I can't help but think about how I'm pointing out the worst of myself. So, maybe the question is---What the hell does she see in me, anyway?!
Maybe this is how you view yourself and not exactly how others see you. Question... Is this how you want her to see you?
What's I about to say will sound rude, but I'm going to say it. You are being very selfish.
Now let me clarify. Unless she has told you that she's going to start dragging you to dinner parties, and vacations, and make you go to museums, and do all that other stuff you hate doing (that you apparently think ALL married couples do) why do you think she's going to start??? It sounds to me like she wants your love and commitment, not a different lifestyle.
Now don't get me wrong. Things WILL change once you get married. That's just a fact of life. But it doesn't mean you're going to have to start doing all those abhorrent things just because you're someone's husband. For example, I have a friend who is married to a man who HATES the arts while she LOVES them. She never asks him to go to museums, or the theater, or any of that. We do that kind of stuff on girls' night, and that makes everyone happy.
Again, I have to ask, why do you think after 2 years that things will take a turn in that direction?
No, he's not being selfish, he just does what he needs to do to survive this pack-centred life because, IMO, he's Aspergic, undiagnosed, type Reclusive (like Einstein rather than Marilyn, albeit nowadays higher functioning). He sounds like a classic textbook case to me.
JACKSON, can you go do the online AQ Test, please, and then we'll take it from there. It'll take you 10-20 mins tops. Do it twice: once as if you were still under the age of 12-14 or before the point when teen pressure first forced you to come out of your shell, and again as you are nowadays as an adult. Answer as brutally truthfully as you can and then come back and tell me what you scored.
Here's the link: http://archive.wired.com/wired/archive/9.12/aqtest.html
As far as I know it is common for men to be scared of marriage and you are also going through the same. Nothing unusual in it.
See you have been dating your lady friend for a couple of years now. I am sure she must be knowing you inside out by now. If she has taken the decision to get married to you, she has already weighed the pros and cons with you. If you usually trust her decisions then you can trust this decision too.
As far as social interaction goes. People are different types. You probably are the type of person who is comfortable in the company of people whom you like. So whats wrong with that? I am sure your lady friend knows that only too well.
Are you living together?