Ask Angela: With so few choices, should I just marry him?

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  • ocd4life Tucson, AZ
    April 27, 2014 2:14 a.m.

    While it is true that marriages use to be arranged and there was no love to begin with between a couple, parents arranged these marriages so that the children would have mates of the same beliefs, values, and cultures. Most of these marriages produced some of the strongest couples. However, if this man is not of your beliefs, values and spiritual or non-spiritual culture then don't settle. I see too, many young people today and have plenty of friends as well as myself to tell you that settling for someone you think you can grow into is hazardous to yourself and them. If you are spiritual and he does not believe the same as you run away fast. You cannot change him. If you are not spiritual and he is, run away fast you are not going to change him. If you settle and he knows that is what you are doing he will have little respect for you and it will begin to show sooner than later. I suggest you find single friends and group date to ease into getting to know multiple people at a time. Group date= Bowling night for example.

  • Future Author ----------, UT
    April 20, 2014 6:06 p.m.

    NO NO NO NO NO! If you only think he'd be so so, DON'T GET YOURSELF INTO SOMETHING YOU COULD POTENTIALLY REGRET LATER! Still, give him a chance. Yes, you may fall for him later, but you may not. If you feel forced into it then don't do it. Marry who you think is best and who you love. Why marry him if you don't love him? What would the point be? To not be single? I'd rather be single than marry someone I don't love.

    Good luck!

  • Fern RL LAYTON, UT
    April 16, 2014 2:31 p.m.

    I never dreamed I would really get everything I wanted in a guy: Red hair, freckles, a ready smile and pleasing disposition, able and willing to support me and our children financially, ambidextrous to make up for my having all thumbs and two left arms... It is truly amazing that it happened. What did I bring to our marriage? Being svelte without having to work hard at it, being able to spell most words, being ready and willing to love that guy and our children, not having baggage from a prior marriage and divorce... Some of those things have changed over the years, particularly hair amount and its color, and body size. Maybe having a good memory can help, too. Commitment is absolutely essential.

  • antodav TAMPA, FL
    April 16, 2014 1:11 p.m.

    Yeah, it would definitely not be fair to lead this poor guy on into believing that she loves him when she obviously doesn’t. If they are both members of the Church, she would also be making covenants in the temple under false pretenses, which would invite additional condemnation upon her and upon her marriage. I would advise against it; after all, marriage for her is not necessary for exaltation, even if it is for him. There may yet be a better match out there…for both of them. Or not. Either way, it is not a good idea to enter into a marriage with someone for whom one does not have genuine feelings of love, or even attraction. No good can come of such an arrangement.

  • Maureen Fepuleai New Zealand, 00
    April 16, 2014 12:52 p.m.

    I am responding as the mother of my one and only precious Son who is currently on his mission. I pray with all of my heart that when he falls in love with, adores, respects and think the world of the woman that he chooses, that she will have enough integrity and kindness to be honest with her own feelings for him and either fully reciprocate his love or kindly tell him that she doesn't feel the same and let him go. It may break his own heart but he deserves to be with somebody who will love, adore, respect and think the world of him - above all others. I pray that my beautiful Son will not be some woman's "the one" because there was nobody else around" or because she felt time was getting on so "oh well I'll settle. He's here so why not".

    April 16, 2014 11:24 a.m.

    I knew someone who "settled" on a husband, their we're married in the temple. Within the first year he was abusive to her. She did leave him got the help she needed, and decided to focus on herself, and she meant the man of her dreams. They were married in the temple. She doesn't have children of.her on ,but she became a grandma with this marriage. She won't change it for the world. Please be cautious and don't settle. Your father in heaven would want you to b e happy. My last piece of advice would be to PRAY,PRAY,PRAY THEN PRAY AGAIN.

  • Ldslady Holladay, UT
    April 16, 2014 11:10 a.m.

    I fall somewhere in-between. Certainly do not marry anyone you do not respect for legitimate reasons. Having said that, waiting on Mr. Right can be overrated too. Feeling a man is perfect in every way is also not wise. It is referred to by psychologists as Limerence, and is often fueled by strong intense physical attraction. In time all people's weaknesses surface. Even things we first found amusing can, in time become irritating.

    Marital love is serious. Much is at stake at any age, but more so when we have more to lose. Families are further involved if either has children from a prior marriage, even if the children are adults.

    I've dated men whose companionship I enjoyed; that doesn't mean I would marry them if no one else was around at the time. Many charming, fun, good looking men I was attracted to soon showed they were too into themselves to make great mates. Be wise. Never settle for anyone lacking in core virtues you value. Look for integrity, kindness, loyalty and traits you can respect. Does he make you want to be a better woman or make you feel you need to improve him?

  • Majordad Garland, UT
    April 16, 2014 10:33 a.m.

    I agree being in a 'loveless' marriage is worse than being single. However one option I might suggest is to look closer at this guy. Perhaps giving him another chance and honestly looking for the good in him might change the relationship a lot.

    I always recommend that you should always strive to become the type of person you wish to marry. Far too often people have greater expectations of who their spouse should be than they are themselves. Your level of education, character, maturity is very likely to be the same as who you will marry, so if you want a better person as a spouse be that person too. in my observation and experience those who happen to "get lucky" and marry someone better often end in divorce as you are unable to relate on the same levels. Thus more important than finding is being the right person and then you'll find that the right person has 'found' you.

    Good luck

  • body and health Durban North, 00
    April 16, 2014 10:30 a.m.

    i feel that she has her answer already
    'when in doubt... dont'

  • my two cents777 ,
    April 16, 2014 8:50 a.m.

    All of Mr So-So's annoying habits will be magnified as you spend more time with him and he will become even less lovable. So, if there is no love to begin with how can you expect it to grow in marriage? Marriage is a difficult commitment even for those of us who married the loves of our life. Don't do it. You would be better off alone and still looking (but you REALLY have to put yourself out there) than in a loveless marriage where you stand the chance of becoming some mans maid and nurse as time goes along.

  • Free Agency Salt Lake City, UT
    April 16, 2014 7:26 a.m.

    I'm wondering why this woman hasn't done the "Mormon thing," and asked the Holy Spirit. I suspect the Holy Spirit has already told her "Don't"--because she realizes this man just isn't right for her. (That's Spirit talking.) She's trying to overrule Spirit, and that never works.

    Here's a "New Age" take on it: You can only get what you really want when you refuse to settle for anything less.

  • LittleStream Carson City, NV
    April 16, 2014 6:56 a.m.

    Having been in a marriage like she is contemplating I already know where this going. To have companionship you have to be with someone who makes you happy and you enjoy talking to. Settling never works, you soon realize that you are alone in a crowd.

  • panamadesnews Lindon, UT
    April 15, 2014 5:55 p.m.

    I do not know how to answer this question, but there have been many great ideas for her to consider. My wife may have thought me to be so-so when we first met, because she accepted a date with me thinking I was a another person. After 52 years of marriage, many children and grandchildren later, we still love each other dearly. We each have our specific issues, but we have been able to deal with them through love and respect for each other. She may want to try to determine why he loves her so much, even though he probably senses how she feels. She should be honest with him about how she feels. It is the very least she should do. He deserves to know this, if he truly loves her so much. As one said, he might be a gem, but also might be a dud. But she needs to know.

  • RFLASH Salt Lake City, UT
    April 15, 2014 8:19 a.m.

    What happens if the right one comes along after she has already married? I think that most of us have things we find difficult. We know that it will take uncomfortable changes to get where we want to be, so we don't do anything. I can think of steps I need to take, and I don't want to because change is hard for me. I think she needs to get out of her comfort zone somehow and go where she will find the one who makes her happy! There has to be a way, even if it is a little hard. You can be just as lonely married to the wrong person and if she doesn't feel it is right, imagine how it will be after she marries him. I think that would be a big risk! It is like gambling, and what happens when we gamble? We lose 90% of the time!

  • ImaUteFan West Jordan, UT
    April 14, 2014 11:03 p.m.

    Marriage is hard, even when you are madly in love with your spouse. To advise someone to marry a person they don't truly love is just setting them both up for failure.

    Don't settle. It's easier to remain single than it is to go through a painful divorce.

  • Linus Bountiful, UT
    April 14, 2014 10:11 p.m.

    "He thinks the world of me. . ." So, just pass him up and wait, and wait, and wait for your ideal; one who makes you feel wild electricity. Wait until you "think the world of him." Who cares how he feels about you. Then try and try and try to win him.

    This is not the best recipe for a wonderful marriage. After being engaged six times, I finally resolved to marry someone who wanted me . . . I mean really wanted me. It didn't take long for me to love her. Even the scriptures say how easy it is to love someone who loves you.

    The best advice is to evaluate this person's character; not his looks; not his perfection. What kind of a dad would he be? If he's got character and would be a good dad, go for it.

  • SuziQ Springville, UT
    April 14, 2014 9:35 p.m.

    I think it is better to be happily single or even unhappily single rather than unhappily married. If you barely like the guy, it isn't going to get better with closer contact. It will probably get worse. A person's good qualities fade in marriage and his or her bad qualities seem worse. Another person's love for you will not make up for your lack of love for them. It is far lonelier to be unconnected to someone you are married to than to be alone. Having been happily married most of the time and unhappily married on occasion (to the same man), I would say that it not easy to stay in love with someone you love in the first place. It takes work and commitment to love another person for years. I can't imagine trying to figure out how to make yourself love someone who was never more than just so-so to begin with.

  • Beaver Native St. George, UT
    April 14, 2014 9:17 p.m.

    The best counsel I heard in General Conference from a General Authority years ago about a slightly different subject but still applicable to this topic: "If in doubt at all, do not do it." (President N. Eldon Tanner, counselor of the 1st Presidency,"The Blessing of Church Interviews", October 1978, Priesthood Session). Sounds like there's still some doubt about the relationship.

  • Howard Beal Provo, UT
    April 14, 2014 8:06 p.m.

    Maybe we're all looking at this wrong, maybe she's not good enough for him...

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    April 14, 2014 7:34 p.m.

    I think Angela nailed the key issue here: respect. True, not a lot of data here but it does not appear that the letter writer really respects the guy (maybe for good reason, maybe not - not sure the reason is relevant - the point is there is no respect on her side).

    Many have addressed the idea that romantic love is insufficient to carry a long-term relationship and that friendship and commitment will be required. I think that a marriage lacking a strong romantic bond could be successful where BOTH parties feel strong respect for the other and each believes the other could be a great spouse.

    Lacking both the romantic spark AND the respect for the other spells disaster.

  • terra nova Park City, UT
    April 14, 2014 7:06 p.m.

    We don't know enough to render advice. None of us do. Why is he "so-so?" Is it because his biceps only measured 24" and not the perfect 26" you always wanted? Or, is it because he snorts when he laughs, has only three of his original teeth and often walks in smelling faintly of sweat and cow dung? Or, is it because his dog rides "shotgun" on dates and you have to ride in the bed of the his pick-up truck? "I can't figure it out," he whistles past his broken front tooth, "its a new truck!"

    Fasting and praying is great advice. But assuming you've done that, consider couples counseling. Make it a date. Sounds like professional help might allow you to see if you have a chance at making it.

  • Janet Ontario, OR
    April 14, 2014 7:01 p.m.

    When I was single, I went out once with a guy who was a total jerk, but he said, "If you are single long enough, you will find that men who can't find a wife lack money, and women who can't find a husband are overweight." I'm sure there's truth in that, but it reflects the shallowness of the mate-seekers. Why do you think he would make a "so-so" husband? Because he'll never be rich? Because he's lazy? Because he's not handsome to your friends? Because he's ugly to you? Because he's spiritually weak? Because he doesn't give powerful talks in church? Because he can't dance? Because he doesn't like children? There's not enough information. I knew a woman who was in her late 20s and finally decided to marry a guy who wasn't what she dreamed of. I recently looked her up and read that she referred to her husband of 20-some years as "my soul mate." There's a difference between settling and getting real.

  • TheWalker Saratoga Springs, UT
    April 14, 2014 4:50 p.m.

    Romantic love will carry your marriage for 2 years. After that, friendship, respect, finances, and shared values become more important. Rather than asking 'Do I love him?', some better questions would be

    1) Can he marry me in the temple?
    2) Does his family share my values?
    3) Is he financially stable?
    4) Am I the kind of woman that a man who satisfies items 1-3 would want to marry?
    5) Am I committed to do everything in my power to make this marriage work?

    My wife wasn't in love with me when we got married, but I satisfied the requirements that were important to her. We've had our struggles, for sure, but we're still together after 15 years.

  • Itsme2 SLC, UT
    April 14, 2014 4:39 p.m.

    I was ancient by Utah standards (nearly 36) when I got married (never been married before). I thought for a long time about settling for someone I wasn't totally attracted to or didn't like that much just because I thought I might never find a guy I was totally in love with. Thank Heavens I didn't do that. I would rather have stayed single all my life than marry someone I didn't like that much. Marriage is hard enough without taking the attraction and fun out of it. Don't settle. Also, don't have crazy, unrealistic expectations either. You can't expect a perfect 10 if you're more like a 2 or 3. (I knew tons of single guys like that.) Do all you can to improve yourself and make yourself attractive and try new ways to meet people. I did everything imaginable short of tattooing an ad on my forehead. I think it was probably about the 10,000th singles' activity that I went to that I finally found "the One." Look to God and trust in Him. He will help you, whether it works out here or in the next life.

  • jjmitchell94 Gig Harbor, Washington
    April 14, 2014 3:27 p.m.

    It's a good question. And I think the submitter asks it because she already knows that the answer is "no." I married in my late 30's a man that I loved and 20 years later still love, but I have to tell you that we struggled over the years to keep our marriage healthy, and if we hadn't had a foundation of love and a mutual respect I don't think we would have sailed over all those hurdles - or the ones to come. I'd become aware as a single woman that it was only within a truly committed relationship (eternal marriage) that we are able to grow to reach our potential, and I wanted that, but I guess I forgot that real growth isn't always a piece of cake. It requires sacrifice and patience and a whole lot of help from Heavenly Father to take the lumps to our ego that help us relinquish our pride and find peace within our companionships. Not easy, but worth it, and take it from me, only possible if both people are truly committed to each other and to making each other happy. I wish you luck!

  • airnaut Everett, 00
    April 14, 2014 3:24 p.m.

    The guys nuts over YOU,
    so, if you do not feel that way towards him --
    and you said yourself you feel he ist so-so, and perhaps you might be a little too picky.

    BTW --
    Please do not write back 10 years bemoaning your still lonely single life.

  • Dennis Harwich, MA
    April 14, 2014 2:48 p.m.

    Don't marry anyone you don't love and can't live without.
    Don't worry about the "culture" that thinks you should be married young, have half a dozen kids and, oh by the way, you don't have to love your husband. Nonsense.
    Love him or leave him. Be patient. If there really is "Plan", the right one will come along.

  • Beaver Native St. George, UT
    April 14, 2014 2:49 p.m.

    It's better to remain single than settle for a so-so spouse. When they've talked about any two committed individuals being able to make a marriage work, I think they've been talking primarily about those who have already made the covenant; but regardless, you're describing the man as "so-so" and the statement was about TWO who are committed to making the marriage work. A "so-so" person is not committed to anything; let alone making the marriage work. Having been in two failed marriages, I can vouch for the fact that if only one is committed to making the marriage work, the marriage is likely to be a miserable one at best and will likely fail. There's nothing more miserable than despite doing everything you can to hold the marriage together, it still fails. It's often been said that before marriage you should keep your eyes wide-open and after marriage you should keep them half-closed. If there's no love to begin with and you think the guy is not such a great catch, it's two signs that it would be a miserable marriage.

  • Lady Wren Las Vegas, NV
    April 14, 2014 2:02 p.m.

    I agree that being head-over-heals is not always the most important thing. The thing that concerns me is that he will be a "so-so husband". Is that only because she doesn't love him? or is that because of his qualities. Another question to ask herself is will he be a good father? If the answer is "so-so" move on!

  • dotGone Puyallup, WA
    April 14, 2014 1:07 p.m.

    Yes, ask Heavenly Father, but sometimes it is also helpful to get opinions from diverse sources. That can be part of "study it out". I can recognize the desires of my heart by what I hope the feedback from a friend will be. Occasionally, what someone tells me will resonate so much that I recognize my truth. Still for final decisions, I look to Heavenly Father.
    I can testify that being single and alone can be vastly superior to an unsatisfactory, unworkable marriage.

  • airnaut Everett, 00
    April 14, 2014 1:06 p.m.

    Readers: What do you think? Should CL marry Mr. So-So?

    Going ga-ga over someone is for teenagers and readers of romance novels.

    The truth is:
    after 30 years of marriage ALL marriage boil down to "So-So".

    My vote: Go for it.

  • Fern RL LAYTON, UT
    April 14, 2014 12:57 p.m.

    My first thought is how would I feel if you're dating my son. You're not, because his community is larger than that. The next thought was wondering how old you are when you classify yourself as "more mature." Just think about it.

    Yes, consider living alone all your life, which will be better than a bad marriage. Consider giving up the guy for a short time to see how it goes. List the top 3 most important things for you in marriage. Pray about it; pray for help and guidance. Ask in prayer where you should go and what you should do. Always remember marriage requires constant commitment.

    I think of how it was when I was 33 and still single. My top three things I wanted in a husband were 1. Good friend. 2. Holds priesthood. 3. Gets along with my Family. I prayed for help after returning to college. In class, we looked at each other and smiled simultaneously. It was a challenge for him that I was 10 years older than he, but 6 months later we were married and still are, over 30 years later.

  • vangroovin West Jordan, UT
    April 14, 2014 12:22 p.m.

    If both of you are equally committed (i.e. each giving 100% to the relationship) then there is no reason that it wouldn't work out. But to "settle" for something you're not committed to 100% is not being honest with yourself. Make it a matter of prayer as well. If it doesn't feel right, don't proceed. If it does feel right, then by all means go for it. There are lots of good suggestions in these comments too. Take those comments into consideration. Remember, God has a plan, and it is called the Plan of Happiness. He didn't send us down to earth with the intent to make us miserable, but to give us reason to be truly happy. Don't settle for that which will not make you eternally happy.

  • cougarfan03 Bountiful, UT
    April 14, 2014 12:10 p.m.

    I listened to a talk by John Bytheway once called "What I Wish I Knew When I Was Single." His list (that I completely agree with) in order from best to worst was:

    1.Happily Married.
    2.Happily Single.
    3.Unhappily Single.
    4.Unhappily Married.

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    April 14, 2014 12:05 p.m.

    By "not marrying him" I meant "not marrying now", not eliminating potentially doing so down the road. Sorry for the confusion.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    April 14, 2014 11:45 a.m.

    Are all dates an interview process?

    Maybe I was doing it wrong in the eyes of some, but I dated lots of women knowing that I had no intention of marrying them. (or them, me)

  • RickChappell Phoenix, AZ
    April 14, 2014 11:42 a.m.

    I'm not going to suggest to get married or not get married. I do want to explore some things, though. I'd really like to know what CL meant by so-so husband. I'm not sure I disagree that that statement is a sign of disrespect. I think it's key that CL define what she thinks would be a good husband, and then evaluate that list sincerely. Regardless of who the man she is thinking about.
    One of the biggest challenges in relationships today is that completely false concept of romantic love - it was completely created by romance novelists and greeting card companies in the late nineteenth century. It has done more damage to families than any other concept. Love is not something we fall in or out of. It is the result of our actions - as we act in love to others, the feeling follows that. That's the concept behind the Gordon Kimball quote from voiceofreason1234.
    The real questions are:
    Are your expectations of a husband reasonable?
    What kind of man is he?
    Sincerely and prayerfully answer these questions, and then compare the two. Then make a decision and commit to it.

  • wehage65 BURKE, VA
    April 14, 2014 11:38 a.m.

    I love Angela's column and advice, she really has a good head on her shoulders and it's understandable you would ask this question of her but may I suggest that the real person you should ask is Heavenly Father? There isn't enough room to describe my own story, I tried, but I can assure you that I was not in love with my hubby when I married him. But I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that Heavenly Father hand picked him out for me and I trusted that and married him. Best thing I ever did! He is my rock, my world, my love, my everything. The fact that you are asking suggests that you know the answer already, I suspect this is not a good match for you, but only the Lord knows for sure. Trust Him and your instincts, being alone is hard, being with the wrong person is soooo much harder! Good luck!

  • jans Pickerington, OH
    April 14, 2014 11:32 a.m.

    In the absence of more details, all I can say is ask yourself: Do I like him? Do I respect him? Do I trust him? If any of those are "no" ask yourself why that is so. What makes him a "so-so" husband in your opinion? Is he lazy, a slob, not reliable, boring? How much do those things matter to you and why? What are deal-breaker issues for you? For him? Would you be a "so-so" wife? Physical attraction is important, but married people will tell you that the body changes a lot through the years and may become more or less "attractive" yet spouses manage physically and/or emotionally intimate relationships throughout these changes. And above all, be honest and fair with this guy. If you have concerns about going forward with a relationship, he deserves to know what those concerns are. And if he brings up any concerns of his, you need to honestly assess yourself as well. Marriages for companionship can work well, but life isn't a fairy tale. You need someone you can rely on through difficult times, not just the hearts and flowers.

  • unirrational Bend, OR
    April 14, 2014 11:32 a.m.

    All I know is if I'm making a decision this weighty, I'm not asking Angela or anyone else about what I should do. Nothing against Angela, but she doesn't know the end from the beginning. There's one person I would ask...and He is the Father of knowledge and wisdom.

  • MaxxFordham OREM, UT
    April 14, 2014 11:25 a.m.


    "Then consider dating him, not marrying him" doesn't seem to make a lot of sense. Isn't it the *point* of dating that you *do* consider whether or not to marry them?

    Yeah, you start with dating to see if you might want to marry them. After a date or few, you decide if you want to keep dating them or not. If you keep dating each other, then that helps you decide if you want to marry each other.

    So the right idea isn't "then consider dating him, not marrying him;" it's "then consider dating him, and *then* whether you want to marry each other or not."

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    April 14, 2014 11:19 a.m.

    "Marriage is a blessing, and also a requirement for exaltation (temple marriage)."

    That's definitely something that can lead people to do irrational things like who marries a man they don't love...

    "They were married about a month later"

    ...and who marries a man they just met? Goodness I will never understand a culture where marriage is believed to be eternal, and then just rushed into.

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    April 14, 2014 11:12 a.m.

    "I do think, however, that maybe in time I could start to love him. "

    Then consider dating him, not marrying him.

  • MaxxFordham OREM, UT
    April 14, 2014 11:07 a.m.

    Hey, Brent, those are great dates too! :-)


  • kimnprovo Orem, UT
    April 14, 2014 11:00 a.m.

    I think it's really easy to say that we're not attracted to someone or say they are "so-so", etc. It's especially easy when we have a dream guy in mind. It's much easier to see the good in someone and respect them (and learn to love them) if we accept them as they are. Instead of looking at how he's not what you imagined, instead look at what is good about him and how those things can bless your life. That being said, if there are warning bells and red flags, listen to them (though what we read didn't say anything like that).

    I really believe we have become too brainwashed by books, tv and movies that we will turn the corner and bump into someone and fall in love. That is not real! Real is having common interests and goals, then working together to meet those goals. I know, it's not very romantic, but it is real.

  • michaelitos Salt Lake City, UT
    April 14, 2014 10:59 a.m.

    Over the course of my years, I have found that, in general, men want to be respected. Women want to be loved. If this woman doesn't respect her husband, it will be a bad marriage, because he will lose his love for her as she fails to respect him. They both lose.

    "So-so", is NOT a good way to describe a potential eternal companion!!!

  • keyboarder College Station, TX
    April 14, 2014 10:34 a.m.

    What about the man's perspective? Perhaps he is also a more mature man and does not have as many options left. This does not answer the questions whether to marry or not, but could he just be trying to make this work from his side. If he really does adore this women, great! But maybe he has also had to do some soul searching and is now willing to give his heart even though the women wouldn't have been his first pick either. It sounds like he is ready to try and make it work.

    The best advice given is to pray for the Lord's confirmation. But even if a marriage starts with a deep love, many lasting (even eternal) marriages come to a state when the man and women must each decide to stick with the other person not because of deep romance, but out of a sense of service and commitment and perhaps just obligation. Deep love can (re)develop later. If these two could start a successful marriage in less-than-giddy-love, I think it could last longer than many other marriages which couldn't handle such a tough stage of commitment.

  • Y Ask Y Provo, UT
    April 14, 2014 10:29 a.m.

    Set all other irrelevant issues aside and answer this one question:

    Is he rich?

  • JP Chandler, AZ
    April 14, 2014 10:24 a.m.

    Pres. Kimball also said "First, there must be the proper approach toward marriage, which contemplates the selection of a spouse who reaches as nearly as possible the pinnacle of perfection in all the matters which are of importance to the individuals."

    For some reason that one doesn't get passed around as much. That said, I firmly believe people's lists of "important characteristics" are often too long, unrealistic, and full of things that aren't truly important.

  • oddman ,
    April 14, 2014 10:14 a.m.

    reIdahoboy - The Lord won't give her the answer. If he did and it didn't work out who would she blame. She must make a decision and then ask the Lord to confirm whether her decision was right. All too often we want the Lord to make the decision for us in many matters but he has told us he will create a burning in your breast if it be right and it will fade away if not a good decision. At least that seems to be the way it works in my case.

  • Shane333 Cedar Hills, UT
    April 14, 2014 10:08 a.m.

    President Kimball had a very good point about how almost any two people who are completely devoted can make a marriage work and be reasonably happy together. At the same time, settling for someone you consider only "so-so" isn't a strong foundation to begin a marriage relationship with. A husband wants/needs to be desired and respected by his wife just as a wife wants/needs to be desired and appreciated by her husband.

    If someone is unable to desire or respect a man before marrying him, I am concerned that the marriage may suffer once living together as husband and wife magnifies each-other's differences and weaknesses.

  • pat1 Taylorsville, UT
    April 14, 2014 9:44 a.m.

    I have been married twice; my current husband and I have been happily married over 30 years. If you are older looking for a mate and have never been married before, you do have to be careful that you're not thinking in terms of what was perfect when you were in your 20s. It won't be what you've had many years to fantasize about. Nor will it necessarily match some fake romantic reality you've seen in movies. Remember, in some cultures even arranged marriages work out OK. Marriage is more than sex and romance. Commitment is the higher level.

    That said, if you have doubts that this person would be more than a "so-so" mate and you're not attracted to him, I would think that is a red flag. There needs to be some attraction and respect and it appears that you'd struggle for that.

    A wise leader told me when I was a single mom years ago "After the physical part is taken care of, everything else becomes more important."

  • beccagirl06 tiny dot in, KS
    April 14, 2014 9:43 a.m.

    I find a large part of companionship to be the emotional support you get from another person. You say that he adores you, so it sounds like he is emotionally available. I think you should ponder on why you find him not appealing emotionally. Is it because he doesn't come across as a prince charming or something else perhaps a personal bias. I think you should list all the reasons why you should continue to date - and possibly marry - this guy. Then list the reasons why you should stop dating now.

    I don't think you should marry someone you don't feel right about marrying, but I do know many people that have started out not very interested in the other person and later ended up marrying them and several have even celebrated 30th or even 50th wedding anniversaries. They did not feel stuck in a loveless marriage, but they also did not marry until they decided they both loved each other and would be happy together. People always change after marriage, you just need to change together.

  • Brent T. Aurora CO Aurora, CO
    April 14, 2014 9:43 a.m.

    MaxxForham -- or give this more consideration, maybe find the love that ulvegaard is talking about, or follow other suggestions found here -- then marry on 51515 or 61616 or 71717 or 81818 or 91919 if numerology is important.

  • JP Chandler, AZ
    April 14, 2014 9:41 a.m.


    Pres. Kimball's quote is often used out of context, as it was here. He was speaking specifically about couples who were already married. It's great advice for a married couple. It's worth consideration for a couple considering marriage. It should never be used to say "Just marry whatever righteous individual comes along and make it work."

  • GD Syracuse, UT
    April 14, 2014 9:33 a.m.

    Has he asked you to marry him? I think you should get to know him better? To marry just because isn't a good reason for marriage. It sounds to me like she doesn't know him that well or even discussed with him how she feels. My experience is that people will or do try to change but there are certain things that won't change except in short duration. I wouldn't marry someone I didn't really like.

  • MaxxFordham OREM, UT
    April 14, 2014 9:19 a.m.

    Yes, marry him TODAY, on 4-1-4-1-4 (4/14/14), because it's one of those great dates like 12/12/12 or 11/12/13 or 10/10/10 or 12/13/14, etc.!

    Happy 41414, everybody!

  • ulvegaard Medical Lake, Washington
    April 14, 2014 9:03 a.m.

    I had a friend years ago in a similar situation. Finally, she resolved that if it meant she would have to remain single for the rest of mortality, she would do so rather than to just settle for a marriage she was convinced would never be celestial (meaning not just getting married in the temple, but having a celestial life together before death).

    Once she made that resolve -- within a week, miraculous events transpired which literally brought her celestial dream companion to her. They were married about a month later and it was all she had ever hoped for an more.

    Don't 'settle' just because you don't see what you're looking for today. Good things come to those who honestly strive for them.

  • lds4eternity Brandywine, MD
    April 14, 2014 8:43 a.m.

    I grew up in a very rural, agricultural, isolated area. I knew many couples who married without a "true" love who had a happy family, good life, good children, and were well respected by everyone. They had and kept trust and respect between them always. You could pick them out easily, as they interacted as best friends, not lovers, but they made a good marriage out of it. As the world changed, and the isolation barriers were torn down, they would talk about true love as something new. But, they always remained faithful and happy with their mates, just knew that others had something they did not have. But, if you know farmers, you understand their understanding of the world is to appreciate what you have, not focus on what you do not have. So, they had good lives.

  • Idaho_Boy Aberdeen, ID
    April 14, 2014 8:38 a.m.

    We can all offer an opinion on what this woman should do, but my advice is to look up to God. Prayer and fasting is the best advice I could give. God will give you an answer and whatever that answer is, it is the answer that will trump every other answer given here.

    Now even if the answer is yes marry this man, it doesn't mean that your life will be full of bliss and ease. However if you know that God is supporting you in whatever the choice is then doubt and fear will be replaced by peace in your heart. Good luck.

    "But, behold, I say unto you, that you must study it out in your mind; then you must ask me if it be right, and if it is right I will cause that your bosom shall burn within you; therefore, you shall feel that it is right.

    But if it be not right you shall have no such feelings, but you shall have a stupor of thought that shall cause you to forget the thing which is wrong;" Doctrine & Covenants 9:8-9

  • Dante Salt Lake City, UT
    April 14, 2014 8:25 a.m.

    Any of the comments could be accurate, even where they conflict, because no one has enough facts. We really have no idea just how eligible CL is. Nor do we objectively have any clue whether Mr. So-So is a hopeless case or a promising case. Much depends on whether mutual respect is even possible. some questions/challenges can be properly answered/resolved only through the exertion of considerable prayer and faith. In this instance, I expect that CL and So-So need to spend a few months dating and getting to know each other better. If she can come to love and respect him, maybe it could work. If familiarity begins to breed contempt, it won't.

  • Utexmom Flower Mound, TX
    April 14, 2014 8:24 a.m.

    Write down all of the things that make you think he is just so-so and analyze how important those things are in your life. Things can wear on you in time - things you didn't think were important before. If you take your time to get to know him, then it gives you time to see how important those things would be to you. You have the rest of your life to be glad that you were sure about this marriage and the rest of your life to be sorry that you didn't wait longer.

  • Moontan Roanoke, VA
    April 14, 2014 8:24 a.m.

    Another take on this ... Show the man your letter to Angela. If he still wants you after reading it, you may be dealing with a saint. Marrying him might be a wise decision. I suspect most men would walk away when they got to 'so-so'.

  • USA Salt Lake City, UT
    April 14, 2014 8:21 a.m.

    "So don't do that to yourself."

    And don't do that to him, either.

  • Deliriousdd Benicia, CA
    April 14, 2014 8:20 a.m.

    I think ultimately this should be a matter of prayer. But living in Asia, I have seen arranged marriages work. I believe there is no perfect person. Even someone who seems ideal has faults. Happiness in marriage is a choice. It takes work to make a happy marriage. I think that either you should put yourself in a position, and place to meet someone else, or you should consider taking this chance while you have it. Many women have held out for Prince Charming and have missed the opportunity for marriage all together. It's not "settling" if you are determined to make it work.

  • Goldminer Salem, ut
    April 14, 2014 8:11 a.m.

    In short: NO!!! Do NOT do it! I have seen far too many wonderful women looking for love and deserving it and marry short and then become very sad and bitter. DON'T do it!!

  • Moontan Roanoke, VA
    April 14, 2014 8:11 a.m.

    Good answers on both sides of this question. Raybies' response is worth serious thought.

    Referring to the man as "so-so" is troubling. Lack of respect, if I'm reading it right. If true, forget marriage to him.

    Try this: don't have a thing to do with him for two months. Not a call, text, email. Nothing. If you find yourself thinking of him, bothered by not communicating with or seeing him, you may have more serious feelings that you realize. If you don't give him a second thought during that time, there's your answer.

    Love often comes after marriage. Remember that in your deliberations.

  • voiceofreason1234 SANDY, TX
    April 14, 2014 7:59 a.m.

    Read the book "Settling for Mr. Good Enough." Maybe that will help.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    April 14, 2014 7:55 a.m.

    There are far worse things in life than being single.

    Being in a bad marriage is one of them.

  • CHS 85 Sandy, UT
    April 14, 2014 7:51 a.m.

    The answer is pretty simple. NO

  • ohiowhit New Albany, OH
    April 14, 2014 7:35 a.m.

    You nailed the answer - "...but I see by far more tears and more anguish from my married friends in loveless marriages than from all of my single friends combined."

    This man who now adores this woman will eventually realize she doesn't adore him, doesn't desire him and just settled for him. How can that possibly make him happy too? Both could grow to resent each other.

    If she's willing to learn to try to love him, why not expend that same energy continuing to look for someone she can fall in love with? I truly believe a prayerful search with work and effort to prepare oneself for marriage - the same kind of work and effort it takes to maintain a good marriage - will result in answered prayer. It did for me, but I know everyone's path is different.

    Please don't make him into someone his wife settled for. You will just tear him down.

  • mmom ,
    April 14, 2014 7:32 a.m.

    Don't settle... "raybies" thoughts may have some merit, but prior to marriage is the time to find out, not after. Take the time to explore whether you can develop real love and feelings for this man. Don't assume it will magically happen after marriage. The opposite could be true, too.

  • Heather Moore Lehi, UT
    April 14, 2014 7:27 a.m.

    Pray about it, and if the answer is yes then when the tough times come (which happen in every marriage), you'll have a stronger foundation to get through them.

  • voiceofreason1234 SANDY, TX
    April 14, 2014 7:23 a.m.

    Spencer W. Kimball taught:
    "I am convinced that almost any two good people can get along together and be reasonably happy together if both are totally cooperative, unselfish, and willing to work together. I realize that sometimes there are personality clashes which make the difficulty greater."

    I say if you like him, if he is righteous -- go for it! Marriage is a blessing, and also a requirement for exaltation (temple marriage). Let's look at the arranged marriages of old days: Rebecca & Issac for one. It will be very nice not to be alone, marriage is great.

  • heidi ho Fort Collins, CO
    April 14, 2014 7:22 a.m.

    In my experience, I would not marry someone that I do not love or even really respect. Marriage is hard enough! I think I would work on myself and my own inner spiritual work, join a 12 step group and work the steps on codependency (Al-anon) and/or other issues and become who I need to be to attract an AWESOME MAN! This is too eternal a decision to just make based on head knowledge, and pray that God will lead me to who HE wants me to marry.

  • george of the jungle goshen, UT
    April 14, 2014 7:18 a.m.

    is there any one else that she is interested in, my be he likes her too but isn't courageous enough to ask her to dance, my be she should ask him and walk from so-so.

  • raybies Layton, UT
    April 14, 2014 6:03 a.m.

    My instinct is the opposite of Angela's. So much of marriage is simply a matter of making a commitment and being willing to work through any conflicts. There comes a time when it's important to make real decisions, and the solution provided sounds more like perpetuating singlehood forever.

    There's a very real possibility that her dream man that she's holding out for simply never will be found. She should go through and reevaluate her expectations and the things she can live with and the things she thinks will make her happy.

    The guy she's dating now adores her. Has she shared her thoughts about what would make him more attractive to her? Give him a chance to live up to those expectations. It sounds like she doesn't know what she wants, and so... is it any wonder he's not the ideal?

    Finding someone who's willing to care for you and you could do the same for them is a precious thing. It seems short-sighted to advise throwing that away.