feeling bad for him but i don't even know anymore...

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SarahsFairytale Posts : 28 Registered: 9/24/07
feeling bad for him but i don't even know anymore...
Posted: Jun 3, 2009 1:54 AM

I have been thinking about coming here with this issue for a while but hesitated because it's kind of personal and to be honest, embarrassing. But here it is:

FH and I are not engaged. We know we will be someday soon but we're both young and broke which of course factors into our future engagement/wedding. We've been together for 3 years. I am currently in school (I have one more year to go) and work a few hours part-time (and live at home). He has no college education (he began a semester in school right after high school but had to drop out which is a long story i won't get into now) and also does not currently have a job. He also lives at home and has no car (once upon a time he had one but he wasn't making enough money at his then-job to pay for repairs it needed so his parents took it off of him). Him not having a car is obviously a huge setback to finding a job as he can mostly only apply to local places, not many of which are hiring. ahhh I am rambling but my point, i think, is this:

I don't know what to do or how to feel/help him anymore. He feels like his life is on a downward spiral (no job, no car, and no college education). He has been applying to places left and right but he can't really catch a break anywhere, not to mention not having a car really narrows down his prospective employers, and his parents are getting on him about moving out soon (and who can really blame them..). Not only is all of this taking a huge hit to his self-esteem, but it's also hard for me to deal with and has no doubt put a strain on our relationship. In a year I will have my nursing degree and he's worried (i'd be a big fat liar if i said i wasn't VERY worried as well) that I'll be starting my carreer while he's my uneducated, unemployed, homeless boyfriend. Trust me, I of all people know that he does not deserve a pity party. We have gotten into many arguments about this and how he needs to step it up and really just do whatever it takes to get any kind of job to just at least have some kind of income, esp. if marriage is in our near future which we both want it to be.
Basically, I guess I'm just asking if anyone has any suggestions on I or he can deal with this and get through it. Like I said, him not having a job or a car (this has been going on for about 7 months) has put a strain on our relationship. I'm trying to be there for him and help him through this as I know it really is killing him, but the longer it goes on the more worried I get. I've even asked myself if everything that's gone on should affect my desire to want to marry him.

Ugh, this post is way longer than I intended, so if you read it...thank you. I don't really know what advice I'm looking for..if nothing else it was good to just type this all out. But if anyone does have any coping strategies, suggestions, advice, comments,..whatever...I'd love to hear any of it. Thanks ladies (and gentlemen).

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Lilmisssouthern... Posts : 658 Registered: 8/12/08
Re: feeling bad for him but i don't even know anymore...
Posted: Jun 3, 2009 7:41 AM Go to message in response to: SarahsFairytale

Ok, the way I see it is this...

If you love someone and really are IN love with them you are willing to face lifes struggles. I completely understand your frustration. I don't really know what to tell you to do. If he has been looking for a job and still hasn't found one then at least you know he is looking. He could just be letting it go.

Truly I think it is something only you can answer for yourself.


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CheetahAngel Posts : 2,017 Registered: 11/29/08
Re: feeling bad for him but i don't even know anymore...
Posted: Jun 3, 2009 7:58 AM Go to message in response to: SarahsFairytale

Sarah, I know EXACTLY how you feel. I have been through the EXACT same thing you are going through right now. You have every right to feel the way you do because I once felt that way. My boyfriend (now my fiance), at the time when we first started dating (6 yrs ago), was in the same boat as your boyfriend. He didn't have a job, he still lived at home in his parents basement, he didn't have a car because he didn't have a lisense (he still doesn't have a lisense but he is working on it now.), and he didn't have a college education; in fact he only had a GED. Now he has a computer degree from a technical school, he works as an IT assistant at a bank, he moved out of his parent's home and now we live together in an apartment, and we are now engaged. So what did I do when he was a, well, dead beat loser? LOL. I had A LOT of patience! I really think that love survived our relationship. If I didn't really trully love him I would have been out the door. I really don't know how in the world I managed to stay with him for years when he had "no life". It took him about 3 years to turn himself around. He suffered a little from depression so I knew he needed to be motivated in order for him to get his butt off the couch. I tried to help him get jobs and stuff and he would get discouraged and stop looking since he didn't have a car to get to the job. I felt bad and hopeless at times, especially since I saw other couples having jobs and the guy paying for dinner and such and then they would get engaged. And where was I? I was at my boyfriend's parent's basement hoping that things will get better for him and I would pay for all the dinners and movies and such unless he had some pocket money from helping out his grandfather. It WAS embarrassing when people would ask me what my boyfriend did for a living and if he was going to school. What did I say? I was so ashamed that I lied to them :(

Ok so...here is what I think you should do. I'm assuming you really trully love your boyfriend otherwise you would have been out the door a long time ago. I suggest you start out with him going to a technical school. That is what helped my boyfriend. He is GREAT with computers and so his mom enrolled him in a school that only takes about a year to get a degree. He passed and got his computer degree! The school he went to offered an internship program so when he was done with that he was lucky enough that they hired him! That was a big self-esteem booster right there! He felt great about himself. He saved up money and we moved out together a year after he graduatated. Then he proposed 6 months after we moved in together. He still needs his lisense though. I drive him to work and pick him up and then his brother also helps too.

Does your boyfriend have a friend or family member that can drive him to work /school and back? Does he have a talent; is he good with computers or cars or something? Maybe he can get a job in that field. As long as he knows that you support him that will give him enough confident! I have faith that your relationship will work :) Goodluck!!
                              

 

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CoutureBride27 Posts : 130 Registered: 5/5/09
Re: feeling bad for him but i don't even know anymore...
Posted: Jun 3, 2009 8:13 AM Go to message in response to: SarahsFairytale

Hi Sarah,

I am going to be harsh in my advice to you, but this is for your own good will.

If your boyfriend does not have a job, and it seems like he hasn't had one in a long time, he won't be able to take care of you and it's NOT good husband material! I believe if one wants something bad enough, you'll find a way to get there. Even if it means working in a kitchen or scrubbing floors or delivering newspapers (all which by the way I've done), but if you really want a job there is one out there, some people just think they're too good to do something as low-class as washing the dishes. One thing I cannot stand is excuses.

A job-less / car-less boyfriend is no good! You seem to be on your way to fabulous things, well done on your studies! If you wonder why I'm being so frank, I dated a guy very similiar to your boyfriend when I was much younger, now I think back at the times that I had to pay for everything, even things such as his car payments and cigarettes ... thank God that I grew up and realised that he's no good!

And guess what ... today I am so Blessed by the most wonderful man, someone I respect in many ways, a man I look up to and admire, he's succesful and takes care of me, something I believe you also deserve! Don't settle for second best ....

: )

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CheetahAngel Posts : 2,017 Registered: 11/29/08
Re: feeling bad for him but i don't even know anymore...
Posted: Jun 3, 2009 8:36 AM Go to message in response to: CoutureBride27

I understand where Couture is coming from but since I have been through it and am very happy now with my FH I may have to disagree. I mean, it is a tough situation. Some guys don't change, don't want to change, or are just too damn lazy. But other guys (like my fiance DID change). Every guy is different.

Sarah, you have to see if your man is TRYING to get a job. Is he looking in newspapers or online? The key word is "trying". If he isn't trying then push him. If that doesn't work then tell him goodbye. But just because he doesn't have a job or a car doesn't mean you should just plain out leave him! If he loves you and treats you well and you love him then it sounds silly to leave him because you still have those feelings for him. If he wants you to pay for his stuff all the time (bills, video games, etc) then yea, that's not good. But if you can see that he feels bad about this whole situation and feels bad that you have to pay for dinner and movies and stuff you guys do together all the time then he has a good heart and there is hope.

I just feel for Sarah because I have been through this situation! I have a college eduation, a car, and a job so I know how she is feeling. My boyfriend had nothing! He changed himself around and got an education and a job. If he can do it then hopefully Sarah's bf can do it too.



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SteffMay2009 Posts : 383 Registered: 10/22/08
Re: feeling bad for him but i don't even know anymore...
Posted: Jun 3, 2009 9:13 AM Go to message in response to: CheetahAngel

The guy I dated in high school was similar. He dropped out of school but never got a GED. He had various cars, all of which would die because they were $500. I tried to be supportive, looking up night school options for him, helping him however I could. But he seemed to prefer to play the victim. When I graduated high school, he didn't come to graduation, because he couldn't get a ride (his friend was supposed to give him a ride, blah blah, excuses excuses) and I drove over there after graduation and dumped him. My college boyfriend was similar. Always with cheap, unreliable cars, crappy jobs, sleeping til 2PM, while I was working hard at school and saving lots of money.

Personally, I think Cheetah is right to help out. But put a time limit on it. Some guys will respond to the help, some guys just like to play the victim. They may throw things in your face like "of course you can go to college, your parents are helping... no one can help me pay" etc. I had two boyfriends that I was dragging behind me while I was trying to make something of myself, and trying to pull them along was exhausting.

My husband and I are on the same page in terms of education, family situation, and financial situation. And it's made things a lot less annoying. If you love him, help him out. But make sure he wants the help, and make sure he's doing as much work as you are.


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SarahsFairytale Posts : 28 Registered: 9/24/07
Re: feeling bad for him but i don't even know anymore...
Posted: Jun 3, 2009 12:39 PM Go to message in response to: SteffMay2009

Thanks for all the responses. I appreciate all of them. CheetahAngel, thanks so much for sharing your side of your relationship at that time because it's exactly what I'm going through. And oddly enough my bf loves working with computers and computer engineering was his major the short time he was in school. It feels so good to know I'm not the only person in the world who's gone through this (and our stories sound SO similar!).

He knows he has to buckle down and just take any job he can find, which is pretty much what he's trying to do. I feel for him, i do, because throughout every problem I've had (car breaking down, needing rides somewhere, needing to borrow a couple bucks, etc.) I've had the support and help of my family (who TRUST ME, is not well-off in ANY way) while he hasn't had that (and dare I say his family could afford to help out way more than they ever have). I also know this is no excuse at all..but the fact is that it does make things a hell of a lot more difficult for someone who's already struggling.

I understand what those mean who have posted about him not being marriage material because he can't take care of me with no job/car. the first 2 years of our relationship were not like this at all. he paid for everything, drove everywhere (including driving me back and forth to classes my first semester in college because I didn't have a car), and loved doing it. and I know that if he did have money, it'd be the same way today, which is why i feel like crap for sometimes feeling like I can't take his situation anymore.

Anyway...I'm going to look around at technical schools and see what's out there because CheetahAngel, your advice was really good and probably a good idea for him to at least think about. I'm just going to keep helping him and supporting the best way I can, I guess I just have to keep reminding myself these hard times won't last forever. and he IS trying, which is a good thing.
Thanks again for EVERYONE's comments...keep them coming.

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ArtBride Posts : 4,838 Registered: 5/9/07
Re: feeling bad for him but i don't even know anymore...
Posted: Jun 3, 2009 2:29 PM Go to message in response to: SarahsFairytale

Are you dating my brother?

Seriously. I just checked your profile to see where you're from, since your BF sounds just like my brother. Especially since he's into computers...

Anyway, I know how you feel. My brother almost 24 and has no job, car, or college education. He's been in and out of community college since he graduated high school, but never for two consecutive semesters, and he recently changed his major. Rarrr - he is so frustrating! He's been "looking for a job" (note the quotation marks) for over a year now. I know he applies to jobs, but he's far more particular than he can afford to be - and honestly, I doubt that he presents himself well to potential employers. Like your FH, he's had several $500 cars and has let them all die, due to lack of maintenance. (Actually, my parents have GIVEN him several of their old cars, just because they don't want to have to drive him anymore.) It's incredibly frustrating, because he's a really smart kid. He just has no motivation to do anything. I don't care what he does, as long as he stops moping around my parents' house doing nothing.

Here's my theory (and this may or may not apply to your BF, but it does to my brother): If he set his mind to something, he really could succeed. The problem is that he's terrified of failing, so he reasons that if he doesn't try, he can't fail. My brother LOVES to make excuses and blame others for the way his life is right now. He'll blame the car problems on lack of money. He'll blame not having a job on the economy. Or he'll blame my mom for not driving him so he can apply for jobs (heck, she has her own things to do - why should she have to drive a grown man around?) He'll blame his grades on his stress. The way he talks, it sounds like he's never had any opportunities - and that's simply not true. He's had the same opportunities I've had - he just didn't take advantage of them.

Anyway, enough rambling about my brother. First off, I want to bring up the possibility that your BF might be depressed. Not being able to find a job can quickly lead you to believe that you have no options and no opportunities. And feeling hopeless will definitely affect his motivation to do much of anything. If you think this might be the case or want to discuss the possibility, let me know. I have a lot of experience dealing with depression. I don't suffer from it myself, but DH does. And I think depression/some other psychiatric issue is a MAJOR part of my brother's issues. Unfortunately, he refuses to go to the doctor (due to not having health insurance), even when my parents offer to pay for it.

Secondly, here are a few things I try to focus on with my brother:
1) Resumes/cover letters. My brother didn't have a clue how to write a decent resume or cover letter until I showed him a year or two ago. If you are good with that sort of thing, work with him on it to improve his skills. Or attend a workshop together at a local community college or career center. Even if he thinks he knows everything, there's ALWAYS room to improve.
2) Interview skills. And how he presents himself to potential employers in general. If he's applying to office type jobs, get him a decent suit. If it's not appropriate to wear a suit for the types of jobs he's applying for, get him a nice casual outfit. Make sure he is clean, clean-shaven, and has a nice haircut before interviews. Work on how he presents himself to others: posture, eye contact, smiling, good handshake, etc. And then do some practice interviews. Think of the hardest questions you can, and make sure he has good answers for them.
3) Simply getting through college or trade school. My brother is so focused on what his major is. Most employers don't care WHAT you majored in. The degree is what's important.
4) Take small steps. Don't expect to find your dream job right away. Work at McDonald's for six months and save enough to get a car. Once you have the car, you'll be able to look at jobs within a wider geographic area. Don't quit your job before you find a new one. Keep that crappy job until you've lined up the next one. With each new job, take small steps towards something you really want to do. You'll be gaining experience towards your career field rather than sitting on your ass waiting for your dream job to fall into your lap.

Also, I disagree with the PPs who said to dump him. I don't think he's 'not marriage material' - I think you're both young. I've been there, and it takes a while to get started - and some people, like your BF and my brother, take longer to get started than others. At this point in your lives, I don't think this is a problem. If, however, nothing changes in a few years, I'd start thinking about how long you're willing to wait. But at this point, I don't think marriage should even be on the table. True, you love one another - but you can't support yourselves. There's nothing wrong with waiting to get married until you're self-sustaining adults - in fact, that's the mature choice. But I wouldn't worry too much that your BF doesn't have his life together yet. It sounds like you're in your early 20s. You're SUPPOSED to be just getting started at your age. As long as he is moving in a positive direction (or at least WANTS to, and responds to your efforts to help him), I wouldn't worry. You sound like a normal couple, for your age.

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BenjaminsWife Posts : 1,069 Registered: 1/11/07
Re: feeling bad for him but i don't even know anymore...
Posted: Jun 3, 2009 2:53 PM Go to message in response to: SarahsFairytale

I know exactly how you feel.

When I met my DH almost 5 years ago, he was working a dead end low paying job that he absolutely hated. His commute was anywhere from 40 minutes to 2 hours (off the clock!!!!) depending on which location he had to go to...it was just bad!

I was less than 2 years out of college with a good paying job and I was about to buy my own place.
I really liked DH at the time and I knew he had a good heart which is hard to find. I basically told him if he wanted us to stay together, he would need to go to school and get his BA. He enrolled in school that following spring (while working full time) and he stuck it out.

When we got married, he had less than a year left of school. DH finished his last final 5 days ago and walks this Saturday as a college graduate. I could not be more prouder for what he had done. Now he plans on getting his PHD next fall.

If your BF cannot find anything, I would maybe have him look into going back to school and you will have to be tough with him. But if he loves you and is committed to making things better, he will do what it takes to get it done.

Good luck

Married 9.20.08

 

 

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uno Posts : 619 Registered: 1/4/08
Re: feeling bad for him but i don't even know anymore...
Posted: Jun 3, 2009 3:45 PM Go to message in response to: BenjaminsWife

Reading your post, I thought to myself, maybe he should go to a technical school or enroll in an apprenticeship program. You replied after someone (or multiple people) suggested going to a tech school to get a degree in computers. He might need to take on some student loans to pay for school but that's a good debt to have when it will help get you a better paying job. He might even be able to take classes at night or just a few days per week so he could work (maybe find a job through the college career department) and get his feet back on the ground.

Something else he might look into is an apprenticeship program. If he's handy or wants to learn he could enroll in one through a local union to be an electrician or plumber or whatever other apprenticeships there are locally. This is what I think happens (working with a plumbers union): Students have classes to attend on certain nights of the week. During the days they can get jobs with companies who are part of the union so they get paid (pretty well) and get benefits as well. There are different levels based on how well you preform and how many years you've been around and I think that contributes to your wages and whatnot. The one I have worked with has a strict drug testing policy and they can terminate your apprenticeship if you fail a random drug test, which is really more for the safety of everyone when you do these types of jobs. So it's not like going to school and I don't think you have to pay (at least from my experience) other than maybe for tools and or books for your classes but I'm not 100% sure about that.

I also liked the suggestion about helping him write a resume. Help him (or take him to a class on resume writing) critique it and highlight the good aspects of his previous jobs. The problem he will have is this 7 months w/o work so maybe an expert can help him answer that question when it comes to interviews.

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His4life Posts : 117 Registered: 4/7/09
Re: feeling bad for him but i don't even know anymore...
Posted: Jun 3, 2009 4:58 PM Go to message in response to: CoutureBride27

Couture I think your post may have been a little too harsh....I see why you feel that way, but there are honestly a lot of ppl out there unemployed right now who are really trying to get jobs, and that does not make them deadbeats or people that should be given up on.

To the OP here is what I think you should do... have a very very long talk about the future. You need to sit down with him and discuss all of your worries and your feelings about what has been going on in the last 7 months. His response will most likely tell you if the relationship is salvagable. Basically, he needs to stop throwing himself a pity party and get up and do something, even if it is just going to school right now (on campus or online). Then, maybe he could apply for a part time job like you have right now (at a restaurant or as a bartender, something like that). From my experience, places like restaurants, etc. do not require you to have a license, just make sure that he has proper transportation. Let him live at his parents until he at least has a car. If he is working part time, while doing some school, he can save up enough to buy a decent car. Eventually, when he is done with school he will hopefully get a real world job. You sound young, like maybe in your early twenties so this isn't that big of a deal.

However, if he is unwilling to at least try in life then that is a bad sign and that's when I personally would end things. Everyone goes through tough time like your boyfriend, but you just need to figure it out and try. If he just sits at home all day and dwells in his self pity then I would rethink your relationship. All of this stuff takes time, but if he is willing to work hard at it I'm sure things will work out.

Hope your convo goes well, cheer up :)

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SarahsFairytale Posts : 28 Registered: 9/24/07
Re: feeling bad for him but i don't even know anymore...
Posted: Jun 3, 2009 6:01 PM Go to message in response to: His4life

Thank you all for your replies! many of you have been comforting and at the very least, understanding. I am young...I'll be 21 this summer, and he's 22...so yes, we do have time to set ourselves straight. It's not that we want to run into marriage immediately, but it is in our plans and we're aiming for within the next two years.

One of the most frustrating parts about this is that he IS an intelligent guy. ArtBride, I'm not sure if depression plays a part in this but I wouldn't rule it out. We've had a few convos where he just broke down and said how he doesn't understand how he let his life get so out of control and that he KNOWS what he needs to do, but just can't get motivated sometimes to do it.

You all have been so helpful in providing advice and reassurance. Of course I love him no matter what but it really takes a toll to watch someone you love not be able to reach their potential and be stuck in a rut. I didn't expect to feel so much better after posting this and seeing your replies but I do. I know it's not the end of the world, but it does feel like it while it's happening. I looked up some programs online for him (he also does not have access to a computer at his house..another setback) and he's out applying to places as I type.

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CheetahAngel Posts : 2,017 Registered: 11/29/08
Re: feeling bad for him but i don't even know anymore...
Posted: Jun 3, 2009 6:14 PM Go to message in response to: SarahsFairytale

Sarah I have faith that he will turn around and make something of himself. When you said that he feels like he is stuck in a rut with no motivation that really reminded me of my fiance when he used to be in that situation. He felt like he reached a dead end. However, he knew that if he didn't change his life then he would lose me, and he didn't want to lose me so I was his motivation. I think you can be your boyfriend's motivation. Once he sees that he will need to get a job and save up money for your future together then that will help him get focused on getting a job and a car and stuff. That's great that he is applying to jobs now! That is a good sign. Maybe he can get something close to home so that he can walk to work or bike or even take the bus. You said he is good with computers lol, maybe he can go to a technical school and get a computer degree. My fiance is also smart and seeing him rotting in his parent's home was not fun lol. Everyone is scared to get out there in the real world, especially now with the way the economy is. Everyone does things in their own pace. You two are still young and the possibilites are endless!
                              

 

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ArtBride Posts : 4,838 Registered: 5/9/07
Re: feeling bad for him but i don't even know anymore...
Posted: Jun 4, 2009 9:22 AM Go to message in response to: SarahsFairytale

ArtBride, I'm not sure if depression plays a part in this but I wouldn't rule it out. We've had a few convos where he just broke down and said how he doesn't understand how he let his life get so out of control and that he KNOWS what he needs to do, but just can't get motivated sometimes to do it.

That sounds like a chemical inbalance to me. DH talked the same way before he started counseling and medication. He felt like he had no control over his life, and that he did NOT have the power to change things. And if it's any consolation to you, DH developed depression when he was having trouble finding a job, too. He finished grad school at about the same time the economy started getting bad. Even with a strong resume and an MS degree, it took him nearly a year to find an appropriate job. In the meantime, he was working part-time doing whatever he could - but his student loans had gone into repayment, so he was REALLY suffering financially. It's no wonder that he felt hopeless - and your BF's situation sounds similar.

My advice is to have a frank (but gentle) discussion with him. Explain your concerns over his current financial and mental situation, and point out the differences in his personality and motivation levels over the past 7 months. Then urge him to see his doctor and discuss whether depression might be holding him back. He may get all macho and refuse to see a doctor, but stay calm and explain it rationally. Seeing a doctor will not hurt him. Continuing to ignore a potential problem - one that is likely contributing to all these other problems of his - WILL hurt him.

The doctor will probably prescribe antidepressants, but request a referral to a counselor as well. Once the medication starts doing some good (and be patient, because he may have to try several meds to get the right one for him), it will take the edge off of his feelings, but it won't solve the underlying problems. Seeing a counselor (at least at first) in combination with the meds will help him work through some of the issues - and he'll also have someone to 'report to', who will give him a push if he isn't making any progress.


Also, make sure YOU have a good support system in place. It can be tough to be the partner of a depressed person. If you ever need to talk or vent about it, feel free to PM me....though you may have to find me on another thread and tell me to check my PMs, since it's so easy not to notice when you have a new one! (I usually hang around on the 'Things you hate' thread, though I'm in and out of other random threads)


DaisypathWedding Ticker

Vice President and Guardian of the Toilet Brush of POOP: People Offended by Offended People

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bride4life Posts : 499 Registered: 3/28/06
Re: feeling bad for him but i don't even know anymore...
Posted: Jun 4, 2009 12:38 PM Go to message in response to: SarahsFairytale

I am not saying dump him....but please please do not consider engagement for a long, long time (I am saying years) I don't believe two people should be engaged or married if either of them are not able to take of themselves on their own. He needs to get a job and hold it for at least a year or more, get transportation, and his own roof over his head...before you get engaged....You are not ready soon.

How old are you two? (you might of answered this...but I didn't read everything)
Do you live in an area where there is public transportaion to work?

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