Roger Tuckerman

Two Reasons Why I Can’t Marry You

Roger Tuckerman explains to his girlfriend why he can't marry her.

marriage proposal rejection

Subject: Your marriage proposal

Dearest Martha,

As you know, I’ve always prided myself on being honest. And the honest truth is I love you. I really do. You are so kind and giving, a she-animal in the bedroom, and you make me feel so loved.

I love you so much that if you were swimming in a South American river, and a school of hungry piranhas came after you, I would jump in the river, and fight them off with my bare hands. I would be eaten alive by piranhas if I could protect you from harm. That’s the honest truth!

Although I’ve always been honest with you, Martha, there is something important I’ve never told you.

A year before we met, I was engaged to a young woman named Suzie. We planned a large wedding and arranged for a priest to perform the ceremony. But then something terrible happened.

Her former boyfriend, who was thought to have died in a tuna fishing accident, wasn’t dead after all! Pulled overboard by the tuna, he hit his head on the edge of the boat, and, barely conscious, floated for hours in his life jacket until he was picked up by Jamaican fishermen.

The day before our wedding, Suzie’s boyfriend came back, and she ran away with him! Needless to say, I was devastated. But a year later, you came into my life and took my pain away. You made me whole again.

I love you, Martha, and would do anything for you. However, I must say no to your proposal of marriage, and there are two reasons why:

First, after my failed relationship with Suzie, I can’t risk the pain of rejection again. If we got married, and you divorced me—or ran off with another man—I don’t know what I would do. I might jump off a bridge!

I’m afraid of getting hurt again. A coward is what I am, but I can’t endure the pain of rejection from a woman I love.

Second, and most importantly, although I love you now, how can I know that I will always feel this way? What if I woke up one morning and was no longer in love with you?

My Uncle Jim told me that if you choose to love your wife every day, and do good to her, the feelings of love will always flow. Uncle Jim endured 40 years of marriage to a nasty woman until he died of a heart attack.

Uncle Jim was a saint, but he was wrong about love. Love is a feeling you have no control over. You either feel it, or you don’t. If I fell out of love with you, how could I stay married to you? It would be like a prison sentence I could never endure!

Because love is so uncertain and so unstable, how can I stand before a priest and make a promise that I will be with you for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health, until death do us part?

If I made that promise, and later divorced you, that would make me a liar. But I’m not a liar. I’m honest Roger! I always tell the truth, and never make a promise I don’t intend to keep.

No, my dear Martha, I love you too much to make a false promise that I would marry you and never leave you. I love you now, and I am 99% certain I will love you tomorrow, next week, and even next month. But as far as next year goes, I don’t have a crystal ball.

I would like to make a counter-proposal. Why don’t I move into your apartment? This will allow us to save money and have a better quality of life. And by living together, we can discover if we have any annoying habits that might make us incompatible.

Living common-law would be a safer and more sensible approach than the outdated institution of marriage. We can be together for as long as both of us are happy.

Let me know what you think. I can’t wait to hear!

Love and kisses,


If you liked this letter, it was published in my second eBook.


  1. I like what Rothpoetry said in their comments, and I agree. I recently read a story where a young woman asked her grandmother how she managed to stay in love with her husband for nearly 50 years. The grandmother said, “You don’t stay in love for 50 years. But you do fall in love with your partner many times over.”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you, Dwight. That’s a great point: “The vow is a commitment beyond romantic love.” A marriage vow is a promise to choose to love, even when the feelings of love may not always be there.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Perhaps the confusion comes in definition rather than the vow. Romantic love will fade and bloom just like the roses on the bush, but the vow is a commitment beyond romantic love. It is the commitment to stand by and support and encourage one another for the long haul. After forty-eight years married to the same woman I can say I am glad I stayed with it, even in the middle of many ups and downs.

    Liked by 1 person

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