Like most other things in life, courtships have a sell-by date.
The truth is that if, after three years, you want a wedding and your partner doesn't (or vice-versa) then something's wrong.
You can run into unique challenges if you have an engagement that stretches many years. I've definitely seen times when a four-month engagement has been easier on couples than a four-year engagement.
I've seen it too many times to count on the Offbeat Bride Tribe: if the engagement is longer than three years, plans shift so many times en route to the wedding date that you might as well be getting a four-year bachelor's degree in Wedding Planning Purgatory And Hellish Studies. Sometimes the challenges aren't based on how long you've been together — but how long you're planning the wedding. I'm going to go with no, we didn't wait too long — the slow-moving timeline we were on worked for both of us.
Of course, if ever a couple had reasons to delay marriage, they did.
Brides purchase a dress, and then a different one a year later, and then a third a few months before the actual wedding. It continues to work for both of us: we'd been together over ten years before we had a child (although half of that was not by choice). We're both pretty fiercely independent, and clearly, moving slowly has worked well for us as a couple.
You put a deposit down on a caterer, and they go out of business the next year. At this point, we've been married as long as we were unmarried — Dre's and my 2004 wedding marks the half-way point of our relationship.
The country was enamoured of the late Princess Diana and it would have been foolhardy for Charles to allow his beloved Camilla to become the target of public wrath.
Add to this his alleged propensity to do things as he pleases and at his own pace, and the end result is years of dithering.