Length of dating before engagement
But, of course, pointing out that not rushing into a pre-mature commitment is very difficult when we’re in love doesn’t really address the question at hand—that is, how long is it until the cocaine-rush of initial infatuation wears off and you can make a good decision?Some marital experts would argue that two years is a good amount of time to wait.
Not only does the media continually portray this path as the norm, but the people we surround ourselves with also provide a benchmark for when we think we should be getting engaged.
Well, this might not come as a shock, but there's no definition of what's "normal." Answers can vary from decades of dating to four days (wow! Even though everyone—your parents and extended family members and friends—will have an opinion on the matter, from "You're jumping in too quickly!
" to "It took him way too long to propose—are you sure? Only you can know when you're ready to take the next step.
Recall Walter Mischel's marshmallow study which showed the value of the ability to delay gratification.* Mischel offered a group of four year-old children one large, puffy marshmallow but told them all that if they would wait for him to run an errand, they could have not one, but two, lovely marshmallows.
Some of the four-year-olds were able to control their impulse to snatch up and consume their marshmallows for the duration of Mischel’s 15–20-minute errand (which must have felt like several lifetimes for these four-year-olds). Mischel followed up with his subjects many years later and found that the ability to control impulses and delay gratification was associated with success in many different areas of life as an adult.