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Will He Ever Marry You?

You and your guy may be a better match than cheese and marmite, but that won't make him propose. Psychologist Dr Alon Gratch reveals the tipping factor that will.

Women assume that a guy will pop the question once he finds someone he's compatible with, i.e., The One. But that's not enough to push him over the edge, according to clinical psychologist Dr Alon Gratch, author of If Men Could Talk (Little, Brown and Company). What, then, does it take?

'Being ready,' says Gratch. 'In my 25 years of experience working with men as a relationship therapist, its 49% the right woman, 51% his readiness to commit.' That means that compatibility is hugely important. But if he's not in a 'marriage mindset' yet, he's not going to commit to anyone... not even Gisele. In fact, 81% of the married men surveyed by the National Marriage Project in the US said one reason they decided to wed was because it was the right time to settle down. 'Of course, even if a guy is ready to walk down the aisle, he still needs to find the right person,' says Gratch. 'But he is more likely to meet her once he's in that marrying state of mind.' To help us figure it all out, we asked Gratch to explain. Here, he divulges the five factors that make a man want to take the plunge:

Commitment Factor #1: The Capacity To Love No matter how head-over-heels your guy is during the initial honeymoon period of the relationship, it doesn't mean he's ready to commit. A man might fall in love, which requires the capacity to idealise. That means thinking and feeling like his partner and the relationship are uniquely special, enabling him to ignore imperfections which, in turn, makes him feel valued and special. Loving, on the other hand, involves connecting with the other person, understanding her and wanting to be with her for who she is, not who he'd like her to be. While it might be difficult to decipher the difference between the two, one clue is the test of time. Falling in love happens early on in a relationship, when a couple barely know each other. Once they become more intimate and learn more about each other's positive and negative traits and the initial 'love buzz' is gone, a man who is only in love will lose interest. If he truly loves, he'll stay.

Another major telltale sign of real love is selflessness and the ability to care. Does your man make sacrifices for you? Is he able to put your wants and needs before his? Relationships are all about give and take, but love is more about giving.
Commitment Factor #2: Being Able To Accept Imperfections
Commitment Factor #3: He Truly Believes In Commitment
Commitment Factor #4: He's Sure He Can Be The Man
Commitment Factor #5: He's Tired Of Playing Around

Author: Dr Alon Gratch
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