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People who made a 'marriage pact' explain how that worked out for them. It's not like TV.

People who made a 'marriage pact' explain how that worked out for them. It's not like TV.


You see it in romantic comedies a lot, but people apparently do make marriage pacts it in real life, too — two friends vow to marry each other if they’re both still single at 30, 40, etc. Many probably got the idea from seeing it in a romantic comedy, but of course real life is it a bit more complicated. For some people, “the one” was right there under their nose the whole time, but the timing was never right (until it was). For others, it’s a nice idea that when executed wasn’t quite happily ever after. Some people who did a marriage pact for real got on Reddit to talk about their experience, for better or for worse.

1. magical_sox is firmly on the “anti” side of the marriage pact debate.

Yes, my cousin did, and it was heartbreaking. She is 6 years older than I am, (so 35 when this happened,) and apparently the guy she made the pact with was a Momma's Boy cranked up to 11. The TLDR version: made a marriage pact with someone she knew, watched her cousins and friends all get married and/or have babies back to back in the space of a couple of years, so they enacted their pact. Proposed Christmas Day, married on Valentine's, fast tracked a pregnancy.

In the first trimester things go south, Momma's Boy involves his mother in their marital squabbles who convinces him to leave his brand new pregnant wife. Wife gives the ultimatum: show up for the birth or stay gone. Guess who is back living with her parents with a new baby and a divorce in the works?

2. BattleStag17 is squarely in favor of marriage pacts.

Sort of. Had a real close friend in high school that was a social butterfly and, for whatever reason, liked to hang out with awkward nerds like me. One day she suggested a marriage pact if we were both still single at 35, and I agreed with a laugh because, hey, I didn't expect her to remember me among all her other friends and there was no way she'd still be single by then.

After graduation her family moved clear to the other side of the country and I figured I'd just be another Facebook friend. But we stayed in touch and actually started talking more--I'm talking constant Skype webcam and phone calls way too late into the night. Turns out I was one of the few people that actually bothered to put anything into a continuing relationship, and about a year after graduation she confessed that she had fallen in love with me.

That was seven years ago. We're getting married in 29 days.

3. Colt_XLV married his best friend. Like for real, he did that.

Me and my best friend since 6th grade had a running joke that once we were single we should give it a go because chances are we would end up getting married since shes the only person who puts up with my shit and visa versa

We got married last month after 5 years of dating.

4. KrinkleDoss says that there are plenty of reasons to get married besides romantic stuff.

Not exactly a funny story, but one of my cousins had a marriage pact with a girl he dated in high school. He went to college and moved, but a year later she moved out to marry him. Not really for love, she had a degenerative nerve disease and he had excellent insurance. They got married and he took care of her until she died. I don't think they were ever romantic during their marriage, it was just something he could do for someone he was close to, so he did.

5. neoninside grew up. He didn’t.

In high school my friend and I kinda had a crush on each other but nothing ever happened because he had a girlfriend. We promised that we would get married if we were both single by the time we were 40. We lost touch after we finished school and I ran into him a couple of years ago, added him on Facebook. It turned out he became the biggest douchebag on my FB friends list and I'd probably rather die on a fire than hang out with him again.

6. DJDanaK met the man of her dreams long ago, while playing in the MUD.

My husband and I met online, playing a MUD (online text based roleplaying game for the normies out there) when I was 12 and he was 13. He lived in eastern Canada and I lived in the Western US. We flirted a little and internet "dated" off and on every few years, but for the most part we were just internet friends who could always find something to talk about. We jokingly made the exact pact to marry if we weren't already by 30. No matter what, we always kept in contact.

So when I was around 20, I got into a bad relationship, and ended up having an unplanned pregnancy. During this time we lost contact for about a year. I think we might have talked 4 or 5 times within that year for a few minutes a piece. The father and I broke up before I even had the baby, and after I gave birth and was recovering at home, I hopped on the computer and opened up my old messenger.

He was online, and we talked. A little at first. Then some more. This worked up to hours a day, updates on everything we were doing and confusing in each other our despairs and triumphs. We became best internet friends again.

When my son was about a year and a half old, I suggested that he come and visit me. We were both working, he had vacation saved up, why not? But he resisted me. I couldn't figure out why, and I would later learn he was staying away as a precaution because he thought maybe I just wanted someone to take care of me, and didn't want to take a chance of being used.

So a couple more years passed. We were still best friends. I didn't push him to visit me again, and one day he got his tax return back and suggested it to me this time. At that moment a whole world opened up to us. We really, really loved each other as friends, but had never really thought being together was a true, real life thing we could do. We got giddy over it. We promised we wouldn't say "I love you" until after we'd spent a total of one year in person with each other.

Well, we met and had explosive chemistry. We'd really been together in spirit, more or less since we were 12. We said I Love You the end of the first visit. That was 2 years ago, and we're celebrating 1 year married this November.

He's my person, and I'm his. I'm happy every day he's with me, and leaving after our visits made me never take his presence for granted. I'm at work but I'm happy every day to come home to my son and my husband. They are my life.

7. johnnyseattle was cool with breaking the pact. His pact-mate, not so much.

I most definitely would have. I made a marriage pact with my very good friend in 10th grade - around 1988 or so - that we'd get married at 27 if we were both still single. We had every class together for three years straight, got along famously, and were just greatly compatible. She went overseas for college and I joined the military, and she just stopped responding to letters after around 9 months.

1993, I get engaged, and suddenly run into her in a mall. I introduce my future wife, and my old friend loses her fucking mind. Right in front of my future bride and all, middle of the shopping center, screaming at me about how I betrayed our agreement, I belonged with her, yadda yadda yadda. Calm as can be, my wife asks her why she stopped writing me then?

Like a lightswitch flipping, old friend starts bawling her eyes out, and plops down on the floor. We hurried the fuck out of there, and I never saw her again. Bullet dodged. :)

8. LadyOfAvalon83 would like to remind you that a marriage pact isn’t binding in any way, so relax.

I had one of these with a friend, I'm now 33 and he's 35 neither of us are married still but I just don't want to marry him after all, and he doesn't really seem to want to marry me either. We were 17 and 19 when we made the pact.


Made one about 10 years ago with a very close friend (never dated, hooked up or anything like that, we just agreed this would make sense in the long run if we don't find our soulmates on the way to his 30th - he's a couple years younger than me). I'm now 30 and 6 1/2 months pregnant with the love of my life (not the guy I made the deal with). About two months ago, I met him and his girlfriend at the obgyn waiting room - I came for a regular pregnancy check and they came for the pregnancy confirmation. We laughed because we didn't share the news with each other yet and we never spoke about the pact with our partners. Now we're both waiting our firstborns with different people and sharing pregnancy joy and stuff. Turned out better than we could ever imagine. :)

10. Good thing rockwell5630 didn’t use Bing.

Anyone remember Google Mystery Missions years ago?

If not, Mystery Missions was a site where you put in a request and other people had to fulfill that request. Each time you reloaded the page you'd get new ones to look through. I stumbled across hers looking for someone to talk to, this was about a decade ago we were both 14.

She was from Memphis, I from Chicago. We instantly became best friends. For years we talked every single day. Around 17/18 we made a marriage pact saying by 30 we'd marry if we were still single. At this point we knew we both had strong feelings for each other but the thought of being in the same place didn't seem possible at the time.

Since the pact, we lost touch here and there. It felt like a big piece of me was missing whenever that happened. We both had relationships that didn't work out. About a two years ago we started talking about being in a relationship and just being together. I met her for the first time about 18 months ago. We're engaged, and she found a new job in Chicago.

11. That’s not a marriage pact, Jquick85. That’s just flirting.

I had a girl ask to make a ‘by 30 marriage pact’ one time. I was about 28 so I didn’t think it was very logical. I was also in a relationship so I told her no out of respect to my gf. Truth be told, the relationship I was in was not great and we all knew it was going to expire. Anyway, I think she posed the suggestion just because she wanted to date me. The other posters in this thread have reestablished my faith in marriage pacts! Not for me though.

12. Like dlh412pt, you can skip this “pact” nonsense and just get married now because you love each other, stupid.

Yes and no. We made a pact when I was 21 and he was 20 that we would get married when I was 40 if both of us were still single. We couldn't wait that long and he asked me to marry him when I was 23. We've been married now just over 4 years.

I think that if you're seriously making a pact like that, you need to ask yourselves if the reason you're not getting married now is a good enough reason. In our case, it wasn't.

edit: Some people asked, so the reason that we had for making a pact and not dating right away was mostly that we were in college and had no idea what was going on with our lives. We also had the fear that if we started dating, we would ruin the greatest friendship that either of us had ever had. Almost simultaneously about three months after making the pact, we both had the realization that we would regret it if we didn't try - and also had the realization that we had basically been dating for quite a while already. Logistically speaking, it hasn't always been the most convenient relationship - we lived apart for over a year after we got engaged - but I wouldn't change anything about our journey so far.

13. electron_beam says it can work out if both people feel deep, true, profound, non-romantic feelings for one another.

Some good friends of mine are both gay and lesbian (a gay man and a lesbian woman) - they decided if they didn't get in serious relationships they'd marry.

They have two wonderful kids together an they are amazing people.

They are still looking for their ideal same-sex partner, but it's very clear that they love each other and care much for their kids.

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