Phoenix, AZ

"She won't tell me where she goes until she returns," man on fiancee

Amy Christie

*This article is a work of nonfiction based on actual events recounted to me by a friend who witnessed them firsthand; used with permission

Deciding to propose to your relationship partner takes love and commitment to be together for a long time, but what do you do when their behavior changes completely after you give them a ring?

Is it ever ok not to communicate as you used to just because you're now closer to being married and you expect to be together for many years?

Would you think not knowing where your partner is or what they're doing is an indication they don't care that much about you and are probably doing something you wouldn't approve of?

My friend Nancy, who lives in Phoenix, Arizona, has been engaged to Peter, her fiance, for three months. They dated for ten months before taking this step, and Peter proposed to her while attending a family party.

"It was special because my parents could be there. He proposed in a different setting, outside on the lawn with a band singing in the background. But after I said yes, we went inside to tell everyone and the party continued for us," Nancy recalls.

They were friends throughout college in Phoenix and had the chance to learn plenty of things about each other before deciding to be in a relationship, so they were both confident about being happy together.

While they were just dating, they always stayed in touch, and Peter called Nancy several times a day. She also texted him during her breaks at work and every evening when they couldn't meet.

Peter was particularly happy about how well they communicated because, in his previous relationship, his girlfriend had been seeing someone else the whole time.

"I got very cautious after that happened to me. But with Nancy, I didn't have to wonder where she went or what she was doing, Not that she would look for anyone, but I just like having messages and short calls all day long. I miss her until we meet at the end of the work day," Peter said.

While she was very excited about the ring, and they decided to have the wedding in one year, Nancy changed her behavior completely after she got the ring. Calls became a lot less frequent, and she rarely answered her fiance's texts during the day.

"She keeps saying she's busy and focused on her projects, but why do this after the engagement, just when our relationship moved forward? She always answered me in 30 minutes at most before. I don't get it, and I don't mean to stress her, but it's upsetting me," Peter said.

He decided to wait it out and focus more on their relationship and making nice surprises for his fiancee, but things didn't improve in the last three months. Not only is Nancy not replying to any texts from him, but she also doesn't tell him where she goes. He only finds out what her activities in Phoenix are after she comes back home.

"We've been living together in my apartment in Phoenix since I proposed, and I get back home an hour earlier than she does. I like to know how late she will be because I usually cook dinner for us, or sometimes I make reservations to a restaurant she likes in Phoenix. But most days, she shows up at 9 p.m. or later and tells me there was an office party, a friend's birthday, that her parents needed her help, or that she had to see some relatives. She doesn't include me in any of that, and I don't even know where she is until she's back. I get so worried. Anything could happen to her, and I wouldn't know about it until it was too late," Peter said.

He's tried to explain to his fiancee that it's not ok to behave like that and that he's worried about her. She also knows what happened in his previous relationship, but Nancy is convinced it's time for Peter to learn to trust her.

"I don't want him to constantly call me and message me. I mean, it was fine before the engagement because it was the beginning of our relationship, and we were still getting used to each other. But if he's made up his mind to marry me and I agreed, there should be some trust between us. Why would he assume I'm doing anything wrong? I don't need to let him know about everything I do before I do it," Nancy said.

Peter doesn't feel the same way, and he's starting to doubt whether she cares about him and their wedding. And his friends warned him she might try and date someone else too.

"She won't tell me where she goes until she returns. I don't want to think anything's wrong, but she's making things so hard. Why can't we be happy just like before? It just takes a few seconds to write a text. I don't need anything else," Peter said.

What do you think about this situation? Is it fair for Nancy to decide to stop communicating with her boyfriend as frequently as before, right after getting engaged? Is it an indication she's not sure about their relationship, or should Peter just relax and trust his fiancee more while planning their wedding?

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Amy Christie is a passionate writer and journalist, always striving to bring out the positive and create meaningful connections.

Dallas, TX

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