Question: “I am into a relationship for the past 7 years. We both love each other very much, but the problem is with settling down. He wanted to do his further studies but due to financial constraints he was unable to complete it and had to cut down halfway through. His parents do not know this and are on the idea that he has completed his education. He is currently staying in UK. His father’s health is in a very bad condition so he is scared to go ahead and tell the truth both about him and myself in his home. This is bothering him a lot and wants to break up sighting this reason. I tell him not to take hasty step and that I will help him come out of the situation but things are not so smooth. Please help me what am I supposed to do in this situation. We both cannot live without each other. Arthi”
Hot Potatoe: Hmm.. I’m not quite sure what your problem is that you want help with.. Your loved one does not want to settle down (=marry, move in together?), hasn’t/won’t/can’t tell his parents about you or can’t tell his parents that he hasn’t finished his studies as planned or that because of this he wants to break up with you?
Anyway.. let’s start with the easiest part: why would braking up with you help him with the “oh-mum-and-dad-by-the-way-I-haven’t-actually-finished-my-studies-like-if-previously-said” -problem? He’s an adult, I assume, so his choices are his choices, and the consequences also. His parent may not be happy he has lied, but it’s his life. Of course if they’ve paid for the studies and he hasn’t finished them, it’s understandable they won’t be happy. But in that case then he has to just pay some of the money back.
If he hasn’t told his parents about you two, that’s a whole another ball game. Why hasn’t he told them about you? If you have been together for seven years already. That’s a very long time..
Would your union be something that his parents can’t/won’t accept? If this is the case, then you are in bit of a trouble. If you (or him, or both of you) come from a culture where the parents opinion of a possible spouse is what really matters, then you have to think really hard how to proceed. In many western cultures the couple wouldn’t care less what parents think and would go ahead and do as they please.
If this is not possible for you (e.g. for cultural or religious reasons), you have a few choices:
1. You don’t say anything. You wait until the father recovers or dies and then go ahead and move in/get married.
2. You start a slow process of introducing you into his family. Like “mum, dad, could you ever see me dating or getting married to a XXX”. Or “I wonder would it be such a horrible thing if I was to marry a XX”. Wait for reactions, let things calm down, then another similar hint. A slow process though and does not necessarily lead to a satisfying conclusion.
3. You don’t care what others think, move in or get married and start leading the life you two want to lead. This may lead to severed family ties (at least for a while, maybe forever), so this should be thought out very carefully.
The fact is, that if you two really love each other and want to be together forever, you just have to start taking steps that will give you what you want. Of course you two have to be “in synch” about this: he has to want the same thing as you do. Because there will probably be obstacles on the way and you both have to be in agreement that you are ready to face whatever happens, together.
The fact that he’s ready to break up with you is however something that needs to be addressed. Is he panicking, is he changing his mind, is he afraid of his familys’ reaction? Only he knows the answer to that, and he should be man enough to tell you the truth. Panic is okay, that can be overcome. But if he’s having second thoughts, then that is something you need to know now, before you start planning your life together.
If and when you are both determined to live your life together, you can decide to wait for a while to see how his father is doing. If he recovers, you can tell the truth to him and the rest of the family then, face the consequences and try to start a life of your own without braking the ties to your families completely. If his father would happen to die, you’d need out of respect let some time pass, then make your situation open and start a life together – trying to keep good relations of course.
But in the end, it sometimes comes down to the simple fact: whose happiness is the most important?
Your and his or your families?
Are you allowed to follow your heart damn the consequences?
Well, if you are both adults, you are.
You choices may not be what your parents want for you, they may disapprove strongly, they might try to break you up. But in the end you have to decide that you are entitled to happiness in life and if this person is the one who gives it to you (and for whom you give happiness), you have to be selfish and make choices that benefit you two. It may not be easy.
But don’t you both deserve the best? And if the best for you is him and for him you, why not go for it?