Home Dating & Relationships Relationships SBM Email: When Do Men Wake Up?!

SBM Email: When Do Men Wake Up?!


It’s that time again! I got an email from a reader asking about men’s thought processes. Check it out:

Got topics for a future blog…is it true…after men have “lived the bachelor life” they are able to immediately identify their Mrs. Forever, and can/ will ask her to marry them within the first year of dating?

I think we must all beware of generalization of men or women in general. Humans are unique creatures who all don’t subscribe to one particular thought pattern 100% of the time. I can, however, take the commonalities and see whether we can reach a logical conclusion. Every man has a different level of “bachelor life” to live. Some dudes calm down after college, some dudes are the “forever wifed up” dudes who always seem to have a girlfriend, while others never seem to settle down, EVER. However, we all reach a point where we say “OK I need to find something steady”, we identify a lady who intrigues us with her beauty and intelligence, and we commit to her. Once a man identifies her as the one, he’ll go through the necessary steps in his head to see if his theory is fact. This varies between individuals, but I believe we all need to be with someone a certain amount of time before we get ready to pop the question. Women can identify “the one” a LOT little quicker than men, but still want to see if the relationship stands the test of time.

See Also:  How Do Black Women Really Feel About Interracial Dating? [Video]


Men definitely can ask a woman to marry him within one year or dating. I’ve seen even less than that. I would ask “Is a year enough time to know you should marry someone?” I would think a little more time is required to see all your faults individually and as a couple, to build as a unit, and to get yourself right financially, emotionally, and spiritually, to take that next step. Or maybe I just have naturally cold feet. Either way, I would tell you to concern yourself with the growth and development of the relationship and each other, and let everything else work itself out. I’d rather have a marriage that lasts that took 5 years to come to fruition than a 6 month proposal turn into a 2 year divorce. Of course there’s exceptions in either case, so that makes due diligence in relationship building even more important.

Does the time it takes men to pop the question matter? Did I answer this well? Chime in, as our readers all help each other to get these answers!

The High Priest of Hump Day…


P.S. – Please keep Haiti and all Haitians in your prayers. We haven’t heard from family yet like most others. I’ve also heard the devastation is worse than what the news is currently showing. By the time you read this the level of devastation will be clearer.



  1. U could marry anyone because the efforts to make a marriage work come from you and what you are willing to deal with. Meaning you can pick a bum up off the street dust em off and walk them down the aisle–if you believe in what you did it can work and it depends on the person. Yet and still you can be with someone five years and they change after they make that veiled walk.

    So what happens is that people are studying the other trying to indentify factors that may later be inevidentable especially if you are not focused on your end of the marrying commitment.

    My question is what causes a man to look from hitting, dating, to wifey? Not the time frame it takes to walk but the mindset to look at a woman with a different eye. Everyone can name a person in their past who would have been a great mate but they weren't ready to view them in such a manner. What changes?

  2. 1. The Haitians are in my prayers. My s.o. is Haitian and I'm hearing more from his stateside family than anything else. Facebook finally became useful.

    2. That man in the picture has scary eyeballs.

    3. I agree with your assessment. From a woman's perspective, though – we lose patience for the lengthy "getting to know you" phase after a certain age (roundabout 27). I don't have 5 good childbearing years to waste letting a man come to the slow realization that I'm the one. Most women know (or are) the women who stayed with the same guy for the better part of a decade waiting on him to pop the question. Occasionally he'll come around and they'll get married – but their kids are dang near high school age. NTTAWWT, I just want to get down the aisle before I start birthing your babies. And these eggs aren't getting any younger, so you better know SOMETHING after a year, lol. I don't need a proposal, but we definitely need to be discussing the future in a serious way.

  3. I think each relationship is different and that there's no set time frame. For some couples, 6 months, while the other may 6 years. I do know that a person knows whether or not they want a future committment with that person or if they are just in the relationship because it's convenient.

  4. Do I think it's possible to meet someone and know that you want to spend the rest of your life with them in 6 months? Yes. Am I one of these people? I doubt it.

    I see many people rush into marriage because they want to get married and not because they've found their life partner. Many are convinced that if they want their marriage to work, that they can MJ-23 it and put the team on their back to a successful marriage, this is far from the truth.

    I do think that at a certain age though, 5 year relationships can be dangerous. I mean think about Ice-T's girlfriend he deaded after 10 years and like 3 kids. I mean, after year 6, shorty should have known. He was only with Coco for a hot second before he put a ring on it. That speaks volumes.

    Also, for men, we tend to wake up long before we actually change our ways. You can fully meet a man who will tell you that he's tired of just meeting women for the sake of smashing and moving on, but that same man will meet some random chick that night and smash her. Just food for thought.

  5. the disconnect between men & women often is over the title. just because i change a woman's title doesn't mean i change my behavior towards her. wifey is wifey. jumpoff is jumpoff. period.

    i have ended title-less relationships that lasted months, years, etc and they have had all the symptoms of a breakup. if i genuinely like, respect, and care for a woman then it will turn into love eventually. it feels the same regardless of what you call it.

    everyone's so caught up on marriage instead of developing meaningful relationships. people have gotten away from trusting their instincts. it's funny we have all these milesones on finding a life partner but we make other life decisions in much shorter time, i.e. greek organization, college major, etc…

    being single (for me) is often more fun than the alternative. i don't know about you, but i like having fun, so until i meet a woman that changes that, i'll be single as a dollar bill.

    men are logical creatures, if women want us to wife them then just convince that being with you is more fun than anything else. it's elementary, no sherlock

  6. After five years, and no proposal..that is to me a red flag situation. My ex husband wifed me up after eight years…but, he always seemed reluctant to me. Nevertheless, we married after eight years….and we divorced after six. He wifed his mistress/JO a month after our divorce was finalized….so go figure it.

  7. I think once a man makes up his mind that he wants to be married it is not unusual for him to pop the question in two years or less. Men don't make up their minds about being married until they finally figure out what they want from a female. Once they know that, they know what to look for and when they find her they will marry her.

    I never thought I wanted to be married because I always hated being in relationships. But now that I'm older and wiser I don't hate relationships. I just always hated girls that didn't give me my space. I've learned throught dating that I like women that aren't overly needy. So I look for that now. And I know I could do a long term relationship with the right person.

    The problem women face is that yall mistake those guys Streetz mentioned, the guys that are perpetually wifed up, for being guys that may want to marry you. Big mistake. These guys hate being alone. But they are no more ready for marriage than the guy that is perpetually single. But the perpetually wifed guy will string girls along because he likes being in a relationship. So he acts like a husband and promises you the world but he really is not ready for marriage at all. Trust me ladies. Perpetually wifed up guys have been in so called "serious relationships" since they were 12 years old.

    See the main problem for women is that you fall for guys that don't want to get married. I wish I could give you a test. Best thing I can do is say if he is really wanting to be married he will treat you like his wife. And it shouldn't take him more than two years to pop the question.

    1. As the perpetually single commenter, I've been receiving more questions as I approach my mid 30s about when I'm going to settle down. My homie says "it's time" but that's only because he's one of those folks that can't be alone and is bunned up with his girl for 2 years. My other homie who is married says that I should take my time to find the right woman and he's a testament of it. This is his second marriage and he has 2 children with one on the way. Do you know how you can tell how happy a man is in those situations? He talks about his wife like she's the greatest thing since sliced bread.

      I still haven't figure out how I'm going to end up. All I know is I feigned a lot of relationships because I knew they wouldn't amount to a damn thing. That sounds jacked up but in the back of my mind I've always asked "what can this woman do for me long term?" A lot of them have very little to offer me. Just being honest. Now I don't really advocate for marriage because something seems awry with the institution, so I would be happy with a dependable and loyal life mate. I'm at the point now where I would like something steady yet the field of dating is still the same swill pool to sift through as it was when I was rippin and running. I'm certain though, if I see a good thing, I'm taking it off the market!

    2. The problem women face is that yall mistake those guys Streetz mentioned, the guys that are perpetually wifed up, for being guys that may want to marry you. Big mistake. These guys hate being alone. But they are no more ready for marriage than the guy that is perpetually single. But the perpetually wifed guy will string girls along because he likes being in a relationship. So he acts like a husband and promises you the world but he really is not ready for marriage at all. Trust me ladies. Perpetually wifed up guys have been in so called “serious relationships” since they were 12 years old.



  8. i don't know how long its going to take me to pop the question. but i do know one thing. no one is going to pressure me into doing so (including myself). marriage is something that i take very seriously. hopefully i will be married once and only once. therefore, i'm making absolutely sure that the woman i ask to marry me is indeed the woman i want to spend the rest of my life with. how will i know? i don't have the slightest idea (well actually i have some clue) so maybe thats why i'm not married yet (that actually not why).

  9. so I would be happy with a dependable and loyal life mate.


    I agree. Though I would like to be married. The whole marraige thing really is just for legal purposes. If you are with someone for a long time or sleep with them a certain amount of times it really is like a marraige. I have 4 former girlfriends that I think of and refer to sometimes as my ex wives….lol.

    1. Be careful with that. Shacking is not an imitation of marriage, you're just playing house lol. You're not married until its official. I definitely disagree with the idea that marriage is just a legal formality but that would lead to an entirely new discussion lol.

      1. I understand what you are saying. It's a religous thing and legal thing. Although most people I see married today could care less about the religous part. And if we are really being honest there are plenty of people married with rings on their fingers that are just playin house. I know you are speaking from a religous perspective but it is possible to love someone as a spouse without actually being married. I mean really if you are with someone exclusively for 5 or 8 years there is not much difference between that and a marriage besides wearing a ring. But yes, of course if you turn this into a religous discussion I'm sure you could point out differences.

        1. I'm not religious so I care nothing about the paper, license, ceremony. If I were to do that to "make it legal" it would be justice of the peace or an intimate small wedding with friends and family. One thing is for sure if the woman decided that she was "tired of being married" or whatever dumbfounded reason people come up with for divorce, I won't be getting burned as badly.

        2. The license, paper, etc, thats all a modern thing. I believe in God, the bible, etc. so I actually follow the teachings. I feel the same way when it comes to divorce, it is messy and convoluted. The divorce rules, esp. in America make no sense and are far from equal in nature. Then again, marriage was created with the assumption that marriages would last forever…..

    2. Dang for real? Marriage is really just for legal purposes? I'm an accountant, so trust me I get it. And as an accountant lemme put out a PSA that the financial benefits of being legally married are far outweighed by the financial hazards of being legally married (esp. if that ish don't work out). But I digress.

      Living with someone for a long time is not the same as being married. It may feel the same, but it's not. Being married (in my head) means you make a constant decision to live up to an open declaration that you made to someone else regarding your commitment and love to him/her. Um, who wants to rush into that? At least I don't/am not.

      Ima be real ignant right now and say I blame it on watching too much Lifetime and WeTV for the ladies and too many horror stories shared between the fellas. Women hear the horror stories too, we just don't scare as easily. =) So the solution to me is CHILL the eff out on the marriage tip until I meet the dude that is cautious but not afraid aka the dude who views marriage in the same light I view it. No doubt easier said than done sometimes. But always worth the exercise.

  10. Hmmm… Kinda interesting to me. I was in a relationship for 7 years, decided to pop the question. All was great, I was ready to do it…. Until it was time to put together the guestlist! I don't know what it was about the guestlist but I balked at even the thought of the wedding and went out and got a mistress. Was it cold feet or I just wasn't ready? Who knows.

  11. Indeed, there are a ton of faith based differences, but even with that aside, putting that official stamp on it takes a LOT, due to the fact that removing that stamp is not an easy task. It's definitely possible to be exclusive to someone for 5-8yrs but its very very rare

    1. I agree. I really think, the courts and politicians, in there efforts to help children have really hurt the institute of marriage. And hurt the children. The legal and financial nightmare of divorce keeps many people from getting married and keeps some dude from taking responsibility for their kids.

      Oh but for the record I have never shacked up with anyone. Seemed silly to me. If you gonna live with someone you may as well marry them. But I understand that many people do it for financial reasons. That's just the world we live in. I can't blame somenone making $10 an hour in a city where a 1 bed room apt is $1500 for wanting to share the rent with someone. Preferrably a girlfriend.

  12. Id efinitely don't believe in living together before marriage. That;s a recipe for disaster in my opinion.

    I also think that subscribing to timelines leads to unnecessary pressure and additional problems. Now granted if you're with someone 5 years plus and marriage doesnt come up, by all means raise whatever flags needed, get clarification, and leave the relaionship if possible. Don't stay in it and bitch and complain though.

    1. I wouldn't knock shacking up before marriage – but I plan on marrying my former roommate so my opinion is a little biased, lol. As for timelines I'm not strict about it, but women need to know that while we are on this journey with you there is a destination in mind. The scenery is nice and all, but bruh….where are we going?

  13. CPT Callamity hit the nail on the head. Excluding religious reasons, can anyone name one good reason a man should get married? Women will provide every single benefit of marriage without the ring and the risk.

    That being said, I hope to get married, but I'm on no timetable. If I get married and start having kids at 40, so be it. I'm not risking my emotional and financial welfare simply because people think I should be married by now.

    1. @ Hugh –

      "Excluding religious reasons, can anyone name one good reason a man should get married?"

      This same thing can be said for women as well. I think that when an individual is mature enough to understand the value of marriage and how it fits into his/her life he/she will be in the best position to make marriage work. Otherwise we end up asking caveman questions like, "Why should men get married if the cows are giving the milk for free?" – which is essentially how the above sentence reads to me.

      1. Anna, That is exactly what the statement is saying. Absent religious reasons, there is no value in marriage. If a woman will live with you, share expenses, have your children, love you, and provide sex, signing a legal contract that would make for forfeit half your life's work and your children if things don't work out is downright inane.

        Back to the original question, some men may propose in less than a year, but unless they view marriage as a religious sacrament and not as a legal contract, it is foolish to do so.

  14. I think the fundamental difference between men and women is that women are willing to settled down and get married when the right "person" comes along whereas men seem to want to settle down when they feel the "time" is right. So a man may have a series of relationships with good women who he feels are wifeable but never wife any of them simply because he is not at a point in his life where he wants marriage. Often he has an arbitrary list of things that he feels he has to accomplish and do before he is feels that he should marry.

    A woman will figure that when the right man comes along she can commit to him AND STILL accomplish all the things she wanted in life, regardless of where she is at in her life and career.

    1. This statementright here I think is one of the most poignant I've ever read on one of my blogs. I look into myself to ask is it a matter of person or timing. Wow. Thats why we have the "let good girls walk away" phenomenon.

      Sometimes though, it is about the person too. To me, I want a one and done marriage. Im not looking to be a Hollywood husband feel me? So I will take my time and look around to see whats good. I think my chances are better that way.

      1. Thanks Streetz!

        I would also like to add that in my opinion I believe men are raised with a mentality of abundance when it comes to women versus females being raised with a mentality of paucity.

        Think of it like this: Men say when the time is right there will be plenty of good girls left, and of all the good girls left, I will choose one of them that I love to be my wife.

        Listening to rap songs I see this theme played out again and again. Rappers are constantly saying "on to the next one" and "girls are like buses, miss one next 15 one coming!"

        Women constantly speak of "Mr. Right," as if there is only one of them or we say "good men are hard to find." So we tend to want to keep that one man that we feel is good because who knows when another good man is going to come along?

        Just my two cents….

      2. I agree with you though about the person being right too.

        I look at the issue like its a continuum with "timing" on one end versus "person" on the other end, men are much farther along the continuum in placing importance on time whereas women are bunched together towards the other end looking mainly at "person".

    2. We all don't necessarily push marriage away for career, goal or other task related reasons. Me personally, I just don't want to be committed to somebody forever and ever right now, I like being single(not so that I can shop around, I practice celibacy!). I really enjoy being single right now so even if the "right" person comes along it won't work; I have no interest in marriage at this time. Just had this conversation with an interested female and she was pissed to say the least, weird.

  15. Often he has an arbitrary list of things that he feels he has to accomplish and do before he is feels that he should marry.


    Not an arbitrary list. Society has reinforced from the day we were born that you are a loser if you don't have the right job and a home. Plus enough money to take care of the wife and kids. When I say society I mean everyone including our families and the women we date. Shit even since high school, the nigga wit the money that could buy shoes and pay for hair dressers got the girls.

    Now in the 50s and 60s you could get yourself finacially stable without even going to college. You could find a good blue collar job, buy a home and raise kids. Now you got dudes not even finishing college until they 25. The with the cost of housing your like 30 + before you can buy that home.

    What I'm sayin is that I think part of the reason black folks are so unmarried is because of the messages we send to men about money. We don't just make that list of pre-marriage accomplishments.

    If you don't believe me look how many people got sucked into the mortgage crisis. Buying overpriced homes with bad loans. Most people did it because everyone kept telling them how stupid they were for not owning a home.

    1. I say the list is arbitrary because what your list consists of is going to be different depending on race, culture, and values.

      A black man may not feel comfortable marrying a good woman until he feels that he has lived the ultimate bachelor lifestyle that he has always wanted to live or that he should have certain things like a house, car, career before getting married. (And what those certain things are is determined by a multitude of factors.)

      Whereas a white man ( or any other man) may have no desire to live the bachelor lifestyle or he may have grown up in a family where family was stressed, therefore he may feel that having a woman by his side would actually INCREASE the likelyhood of achieving his goals.

      There was once a point in time where the model was that you married young or when you had nothing and then worked towards individual and group goals TOGETHER. Now the model is that you should both be bringing something substantial to the table to start with, hence part of the reason people are getting married later and later: it times a while to actually build up anything substantial in terms of money and career in today's society.

      1. I would agree with most of what you said. And yes the expectations do differ by race and class. But I would also add that their is a lot more pressure and a lot more of an expectation for black men to bring certain things to the table. A white guy is almost always presumed to have potential no matter how broke and uneducated he is. On the other hand a black man is never presumed to have potential. His earning power and educational aspirations have to be proven and in place before anyone takes him seriously or considers him for a mate. This is the societal pressure that leads us to develop the "pre-marriage list of accomplishments."

        1. I don't agree that there is more pressure and/or expectations for black men to bring something to the table, any more than any other race of men. Who is this additional pressure supposedly coming from? In fact, there is a running joke amongst most black women that if they did cross over the color line to be with a man of another race that man would have to doing as good as if not much better than a black man that they could be with.

          Black women think black men have tons of potential. If anything the average black woman is disappointed in the average black man because she feels he's not living up to his potential, not because she feels he lacks it altogether.

          I think you are mistaking white America's feelings on what makes a black man marriageable versus what the average black woman feel makes a black man marriageable. This makes me think of those statistics that calculate the number of "marriageable" black men there are in America and they always exclude the brothas that don't have high school diplomas. Who decided that a high school diploma was a criteria for marriage? Certainly not the many black women who don't have one. And who decided that a man with any sort of criminal conviction was unmarriageable? Forest Whitaker served time for murder and now he is a successful actor married to black women. I don't believe that your average black women would look past a brotha who made some mistakes in his past but by the time she meets him years later he is materially, emotionally, and mentally stable.

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  17. Who decided that a high school diploma was a criteria for marriage? Certainly not the many black women who don’t have one. And who decided that a man with any sort of criminal conviction was unmarriageable?


    Seriously I don't see a whole lot of niggaz wit "potential" gettin the pussy. Especially in the under 25 age group. Somehow I don't recall girls fighting over the niggaz in the high school math club. If you only knew how people look at you if tell em "yeah I live wit moms but I'm savin to by a house." You get what my man calls the Ice Cube face (which means yeah right nigga, kick rocks). I heard a Muslim dude say one time "there wouldn't be a dude sellin drugs in the hood if sister would stop givin the hustlas all the play." And your right, 9 times out of 10 if a sister crosses over the race line the white dude is paid. But thats why they cross over in the first place. Cause the white guy is better educated and more finacially set.


    Forest Whitaker served time for murder and now he is a successful actor married to black women.


    I think you are talking about Charles Dutton. And nobody married dat man till his money got long. Wasn't nobody checkin for Roc the ex con wit potential. :- )

    1. "Seriously I don’t see a whole lot of niggaz wit “potential” gettin the pussy. Especially in the under 25 age group. "


      What rock are you living under? (Just Joking!) I see it all day everyday. I'm 26 and I used to work at the Department of Human Services, otherwise known as the public aid office, and there were plenty of women in there knocked up or with kids by young black men. I've went to college in 3 different states and there was always plenty of sex going on amongst the undergrads. All these black women under the age of 25 are not knocking themselves up.

      "Somehow I don’t recall girls fighting over the niggaz in the high school math club."


      In the high school math club, probably not. But did you chill with any chicks that were cheerleaders or girls who liked getting with guys from other high schools/college dudes cause they were so much cooler and more mature than the guys at their own school? I knew plenty of them. The girls or guysn in the math club are not exactly a good example of your average high schooler.

      If you only knew how people look at you if tell em “yeah I live wit moms but I’m savin to by a house.”


      I know how a lot of women would look at you crazy but most of those chicks are shallow as hell anyways. Once on this blog there was a woman guest blogger and she was talking about how she had met the perfect guy who was everything she wanted but he didn't have his own place because he was in med school. She dumped the guy. And my first thought was "great for him, he deserves the kind of woman that will understand he's on his grind and isn't trying to waste money instead of a woman more concerned with keeping up with the Joneses."

      There are women out there who judge men as individuals and will look at his potential as long as he's making good on that potential. Sitting up in your mommas house daydreaming about a rap career ain't gonna get it though. I figure as long as one you has an apt/house it should be ok.

      Again, you gotta separate the women of substance who are looking for a good man with character as the first and foremost prerequisite from the women who think money/independence = good man.

  18. Read the book by Ric D. Harris, it''s called The Fisherman and the Catch: Catching the Right Woman. The book is about men catching thier soulmate. The book talks about men getting thier "tackle box" together in order to catch the right fish for them. The book uses fishing analogies relating to tools men need for that catch, while describing women with the same similarities as fish. As an example the book talks about Panfish, Trout, Catfish and Bass using the behaviors of those fish and relating them to types of women. The book is so true and very hilarious. It's the playbook on ensuring that men, who is the Fisherman catch the right women, who is the fish, for them. The book is a keeper! and you can get it on Amazon.com and Barnesandnoble.com


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