Real Marriage Pacts

June 22, 2023 | Sammy Tran

Real Marriage Pacts


Marriage is a sacred bond between two people…but sometimes it isn’t quite as easy as just saying yes to that special person. Sometimes you just have to look at your friend, take a deep breath, and agree to get married if you’re both sad and single in later years. These Redditors share tales of times when a marriage pact worked out—or didn’t.


1. The Better Man

Just a friendly jest, not an agreement: Once upon a time, my best buddy had been with his girl for quite a while. In good fun, I told her if he didn’t pop the question within a year, then I would. To clarify, we were just pals, with no romance, no spark, nothing at all. Little did we know everything would change in the blink of an eye.

Fast-forward a year and we found ourselves taking marriage vows. Even we could hardly believe it when we fell for each other. Fast forward, two children, and almost a quarter of a century later, our eldest is off to college soon. The beautiful part is not much has changed since our pal days; even marriage couldn't disrupt our bond.

Couple walking down the aisleSpora Weddings , Pexels

2. No, Thank You

During high school, my best guy friend and I made an unusual pact. The strange twist? He promised me, when we were around 20, that he'd divorce his wife if he was married before 30, but I wasn't, just to marry me. 

I found that very puzzling. After that, we lost touch until I was 31. By then, he was married and I wasn't. We hung out for a day, and he asked, "Do you recall our marriage agreement?"

It seemed he was ready to leave his wife for me as per our pact, but I turned him down.

Couple arguing cottonbro studio, Pexels

3. The Pact Player

Throughout high school, college, and university, I created little agreements with a number of my female friends. On my marriage day, right before the ceremony, one friend mentioned one of these agreements. Overhearing this, two other girlfriends jumped in, saying they too had similar mutual agreements with me.

The three of them were surprised by the measures I'd taken. I played it cool, crafting these agreements at different stages in life, as a backup in case any of these friends eventually partnered off. You could even call me a kind of commitment strategist.

Three surprised womandrobotdean , Freepik

4. The Momma’s Boy

My cousin made a promise—it was a deal that turned out to be heart-shattering. The chap she made this agreement with was pretty much the epitome of a momma's boy.

She had made her pact with a guy she trusted, and as she witnessed her cousins and friends getting hitched or having babies one after another within a few years, they decided to fulfill their pact. He popped the question on Christmas Day, they exchanged vows on Valentine's Day, and soon thereafter, they were expecting a little one.

However, during the first trimester, their relationship hit a rocky patch. The momma's boy roped his mother into their couple disagreements—and it led to awful consequences. His mother persuaded him to abandon his newly wed and expecting wife. His wife then drew a line, telling him either to be there for their child's birth or permanently stay away.

Guess who ended up back at her parent's house, a fresh little one in her arms, and a pending divorce?

Mother with baby seating on the chairRDNE Stock project , Pexels

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5. That’s One Way To Do It

My husband and I share an unusual agreement.

He was raised in a two-parent household, where his parents were committed to each other and avoided divorce. However, he saw his four older siblings make substantial mistakes in their relationships, leading to unintended pregnancies, multiple divorces, or even a brother whose wife attempted to run him over with a car... 

From these experiences, he resolved to maintain a lifelong, unbroken marriage. I had a different upbringing. My parents separated and I alternated weekly between mom's and dad's place, living an hour apart. This situation led to significant stress in my life, which inspired my desire for a stable, everlasting marriage when I grew up.

My husband and I got acquainted in high school, and our affection for each other deepened with time. After two years, we decided to become engaged and got married three years later. A couple of months prior to our wedding, we had a profound discussion about our expectations and the future of our relationship.

We concluded this discussion with a peculiar agreement: if ever we contemplate divorce, we'd rather have a metaphorical knife fight, struggling through our issues until one of us gives in, leaving the other one alone.

Woman holding knifeRDNE Stock project , Pexels

6. A Little Dramatic

Back when I was in my second year of college, I remember making a pact with a girl I was seeing casually. She was a stunning, tall redhead with a flair for drama. She was actually the first woman I found myself really hung up on when I reached adulthood. 

We got so serious about this pact that we penned it out, signed it, and even had someone from our dorm act as a witness. A few years post-graduation, I reminded her of it when we caught up over drinks. Her response was quite harsh. She threatened to cut off all communication if I dared to bring it up again. 

However, at a college reunion last year, I unexpectedly bumped into her and discovered I wasn't drawn to her at all anymore. It was a refreshing revelation.

Sad coupleMonstera, Pexels

7. Effort Pays Off

Back in high school, I had a buddy who was always the life of the party but, for some reason, enjoyed spending time with us less socially savvy folks. One day, she lightly proposed that if we were both still single at 35, we should get married. 

I agreed, chuckling because I figured I'd just be one face in a crowd of her friends, and there was no way she'd still be single by that point. When we graduated, her family relocated to a completely different part of the country. I assumed we'd just become casual social media acquaintances. 

Interestingly, we kept in contact and started to chat even more—endless Skype video calls and nocturnal phone conversations. I became one of the few people who prioritized maintaining our relationship. About a year after we graduated, she admitted that she had developed feelings for me.

That was seven years in the past. As of today, our wedding is in a swift 29 days.

Man having videocall on laptopAlex Green, Pexels

8. Sharing Pregnancy Joy

About a decade ago, my close friend and I made an interesting agreement. We were not dating, just good friends, and we decided that if we hadn't found our life partners by his 30th birthday, we would reconsider our relationship.

I'm now 30 years old, six and a half months pregnant, and madly in love with someone else. But then, life threw a delightful curveball. A couple of months ago, I ran into my old friend and his girlfriend in the OBGYN waiting room. We were both there for pregnancy-related reasons: me for a routine checkup and they to confirm their pregnancy.

The surprise and laughter filled the air as we realized we hadn't shared our exciting news with each other, nor had we ever mentioned our old pact to our partners. Now, we're both on the edge of parenthood, sharing this wonderful journey with other people. It's perhaps even more beautiful than what we could have ever imagined in our pact.

couple at hospital hallwayMiriam Doerr Martin Frommherz, Shutterstock

9. Holding On A Little Too Hard

Back in 10th grade, around 1988, my good friend and I made a pact. We promised that if we were both single at 27, we'd get married. We were classmates for three consecutive years. We got along great and were a good match. She went abroad for college while I signed up for military service. After about nine months, she stopped replying to my letters.

Fast forward to 1992, I was engaged. To my surprise, I ran into this friend at a mall. I introduced her to my bride-to-be, and she suddenly exploded. Right in the bustling center of the mall, in front of my fiancée, she accused me of breaking our pact, insisting that I was meant to be with her, and so on.

In the most collected way, my soon-to-be wife asked her why she had stopped writing to me. Suddenly, like flicking a switch, my old friend broke down into tears, collapsing on the floor. We quickly made our exit, and I never saw her again. Looks like I dodged a potential issue!

Upset couple looking to another woman on the streetAndrea Piacquadio , Pexels

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10. The Saddest Story

When we crossed paths in college, we instantly became inseparable. She was just 18 and I was 20. We spent endless hours together and, for a short time, we were more than just friends. Yet, we never made things an official relationship as we both thrived on the freedom of our youthful existence. 

We dated others simultaneously, but we discussed and decided that a commitment to one another would be a testament of our totality to one another.

Given our desire to preserve our carefree, non-committed lifestyle, we consciously refrained from making any formal commitments. A few years adopted this pace and we were content—until she was confronted with a dreadful twist of fate.

Her sister was abruptly taken away in a tragic car accident. She was only 16. The news tore my friend apart in ways I can't express — it still aches to recall it to this day. Her father, too, was shattered, to the point of endangering his own life by neglecting self-nourishment. She returned to her home—out of state—to tend to him.

In her efforts to deal with her grief, she severed ties with everyone, me included. Two years passed before I saw her again. The sparkling, vivacious person I knew was replaced by someone quieter, more somber and perhaps more perceptive. 

The only thing I wanted was to offer her relief from her suffering, and my inability to do so was the most painful experience ever. At this point, I realized I was deeply in love with her.

Despite confessing my love and expressing my wish to stand by her, her response crushed me. She painfully declared her inability to handle any kind emotional bond for the foreseeable future. She could not guarantee when, or if, she would ever be ready for emotional intimacy again.

Being particularly distanced from me was what she wanted most. She needed time to redefine her existence in the painful absence of her sisters. I agreed to give her all the time she needed. She confessed that the time spent with me were the happiest days of her life.

Despite the pain, I understood her decision and that marked our mutual agreement. I was 25 and she was 23. The deal was: if she felt healed by the time she was 30 and I was 32, and if neither of us had found love with another person, we would tie the knot. And so, we took separate paths.

She shifted to Wyoming seeking solitude while I left for Germany to distance myself from her. Our initial days were marked by silence until we gradually rekindled communication through letters, emails and shared books.

As years unfurled, we grew closer. On my 30th birthday, I broached our marriage pact teasingly. I conveyed that no one else had won my heart. To my surprise, she responded seriously, assuring me she felt the same. When asked about her emotional healing progress she acknowledged that she was on the mend.

A year later, she suggested we reunite to reignite the lost connection. Sparks flew instantly. I relocated to California, found a job, and eventually proposed. She playfully requested I wait until her 30th birthday to officially take the plunge. Agreeing seemed easy since things were running smoothly. But a happy ending was not in our cards.

The cruel irony of another car accident took her from me. After fighting for two days in intensive care, she succumbed to her injuries. I attended her funeral, exchanged a few words with her father but never reached out to him later. The loss left me with too little strength to check in on him.

I am presently in therapy, trying to regain a sense of normalcy against the harsh emotion of overwhelming anger. Often, I am left pondering if this was what she felt like. But bearing in mind that she made it through gives me the motivation to persist. She accomplished it and she would want me to accomplish it, too.

Sad manAndrea Piacquadio, Pexels

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11. Older And Wiser

My wife and I began our story during that somewhat clumsy summer after high school but before college. Then, we each followed our own paths. It was sort of a mutual understanding, laced with a touch of humor. We did meet once for lunch when we were around 20.

Years went by and fate led us to cross paths once more at a friend's gathering when I was 28. We clicked immediately. She had just finalized a two-year marriage, and I had just returned from law school. It was refreshing to know we could trust each other and that we both got along well with each other's families and friends.

Fast forward almost 20 years from that coincidental reunion, and here we are, 16 years married, parents of a few wonderful kids, living the suburban dream.

Family preparing BBQ for lunchJulia M Cameron, Pexels

12. Just Couldn’t Wait

When I was 21 and he was 20, we humorously decided that we'd tie the knot when I turned 40 if we were both still single. But we couldn't resist each other for such a long time, and he proposed when I was merely 23. It's been over four years now since we've been happily married.

My two cents for anyone making such a pact is to explore why you aren't marrying at present. Ask yourself if the delay is really worth it. For us, it certainly wasn’t.

Man proposing to a woman.Marcus Silva, Pexels

13. Divorce Would Be Best

I know some folks who went for it... and it turned out to be a huge mess. She's just not a nice person and was unfaithful to him within the first six months. Their wedding was pretty uncomfortable to say the least, yet they're still an item. 

Honestly, I think they'd be better off divorced. It's not even about the promise they made when they were young, it's largely because of her bad attitude.

Upset coupleKetut Subiyanto , Pexels

14. Meant To Be

About a decade ago, while I was attending high school in Australia, I started dating this girl; she was my first girlfriend. I had plans of marrying her, but she broke up with me instead. Looking back now, although she views it as a mistake, I honestly believe it was the best thing to happen then. Of course, I enjoy making light of it nowadays.

We then went our separate ways and didn't communicate for eight years.

Fast forward to when I was on a student exchange program in London this year. I had an opportunity to visit Barcelona, remembering that she was living there, I reached out to her for some travel pointers. It was the first time I felt at ease reaching out to her since our breakup.

As luck would have it, she had left for Australia the day prior, but she graciously gave me some advice nonetheless. It wasn't long before we started getting to know each other again and we've been messaging daily ever since.

During my sight-seeing adventure in Barcelona, I serendipitously captured her apartment building in one of my photos, attracted only by its paint job. It's still hard for me to wrap my mind around the accuracy of stumbling across her address out of innumerable city streets and randomly snapping my photo there.

Upon my return home from the exchange program, we reconnected. Our relationship evolved steadily from former lovers, to friends, to potential romantic partners, and ultimately dating.

In retrospect, we discovered a couple of surprising coincidences from our past. In a primary school photo from 2002, when I was just ten, I was standing directly behind her. Though I had a crush on her then, it wasn't until I was 15 that I finally spoke to her.

For several years during our silent phase, we lived just within 100 meters of each other. Further coinciding, my dad turns out to work with her roommate and is known as “the mad bloke” at work.

Right before we began dating, I had already planned another semester abroad. Quite foolishly, we took the decision to wait it out while I was on my way to Canada for a four-month stint. Meanwhile, I'm slated to meet her in Barcelona.

Unable to resist the impulses of my heart, I proposed to her; just because I felt it was right. She said yes, but on the condition that I ask her again in person. So, on my recent 25th birthday, I purchased an engagement ring. Now all I can do is admire it for the next three months.

So it's not a pact per se, but a real-life romantic comedy. Given that I study film, it wouldn't be too far-fetched for me to turn this into a screenplay sometime in the future.

Man holding wedding ringGift Habeshaw, Pexels

15. Always There For Support

I once had a close relationship with a genuinely wonderful guy. He was good-looking, intelligent, and had an amazing sense of humor. He moved away but we continued to stay in touch, showing that we still held each other in our hearts, and that kinda thing.

Sadly, he contracted HIV through a girlfriend who hadn't disclosed her condition to him. This incident led to several friends abandoning him, deeply hurting him in the process.

Yet through the hardships, I remained by his side. I assisted him in finding support groups and such, and our friendship persevered, because that’s what you do when a friend is going through such a tough time.

Despite everything, this guy remains hopeful about his health situation and aims to lead a fulfilling life for many years. I must admit, if he hasn't found someone or if he's still interested, I'd likely be willing to explore that relationship further.

Upset woman on the phoneAlex Green , Pexels

16. Don’t Leave It Too Late

We first crossed paths in high school. I, a sophomore, she, a freshman. I was her mentor in Japanese after a friend had led my class—it was an enjoyable and rewarding pursuit. We quickly became close, even dated for a while, though our relationship evolved into a firm friendship.

Every year, we'd make a pilgrimage to the Cherry Blossom Festival in DC. It was a cherished ritual where we could hit pause and truly enjoy each others' company for three short, sweet days, away from the hassles back home.

It was during our inaugural festival trip we made a pact to marry by 25, which we later moved to 30. The pact was a regular topic of our annual conversations, a thrilling promise in the back of my mind, as we lived our lives freely until ‘30’ came.

Things changed when I moved on from school. Our paths diverged. However, my dream to marry her stood unshake—even when I learned about her well-kept secret. Tough times ensued for her, and at 18, she became a mother. She also had a second child years later.

Years on, we reconnected and our old friendship seamlessly picked up where it left off, now richer with our diverged life stories accounted for. By this stage, I was 25 and she, 24.

For the next couple of years, we attempted to transition our deep friendship into a relationship before the deadline imposed by our pact. It was wonderful between us, but thriving careers and parenting commitments made it challenging. I loved her like no other.

Sadly, she passed away two months ago. Our pact remained unfulfilled, though we were extremely close. I would have married her in a heartbeat, anything between our recent years and age 30. My heart aches when I think about the missed opportunity to call her my wife for a few short years.

Her memory continues to guide me as my conscience, preventing any self-damage. In this way, she stays close. My heart will forever hold a special place for her.

Sad man cryingRDNE Stock project, Pexels

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17. Putting Up With Each Other For Life

My best friend and I, who've known each other since 6th grade, always had a playful teasing. We used to say that we might as well start dating because most likely we would end up married. After all, it seemed she was the only one who could tolerate all my quirks and the same rang true for her with me.

Lo and behold! After being in a relationship for five years, we tied the knot last month.

Woman hugging manVera Arsic , Pexels

18. The Divorce Pact

We tied the knot at a young age and our partnership gave us two beautiful kids that we are proud to parent together. We really are the only two people that can tolerate each other on those never-ending road trips. However, when it comes to marriage, we're just not good at it. So, we thought of an unusual solution. 

We made a "tongue-in-cheek" divorce pact for 2020. Our thought process was that we'd still be youthful enough to enjoy socializing and we'd have seen our kids through some of the hardest teenage phases by then.

But things didn't quite work out as planned. We managed to stick together for just a year longer than our prearranged "expiry date". Right now, we're in the midst of dissolving our marriage. But, the silver lining is that there's nobody else I'd wish to navigate this peaceful separation with, be it in 2020 or today.

Woman putting her wedding ringcottonbro studio , Pexels

19. The Pastor’s Daughter

It wasn't really an agreement between us, rather a vow I made to myself. I was just three years old when a new set of pastors arrived at our church with their 1-year-old daughter. Apparently, my parents recall that the first thing I declared upon seeing her was, "I'm going to marry her".

As we grew up, we became good friends. Sure, there was an age gap—she had friends her age and I had mine, yet when we were together, we were pretty tied together. It's funny, but I always had this feeling that we were destined for each other. Guess that “I'm gonna marry her” comment wasn't just a kid's joke to me.

So, even when she moved away and we lost touch, she stayed on my mind. On my lonely days, when I was overloaded with self-pity, I'd think about her. I had this ridiculous fantasy of showing up out of the blue and whisking her away, as if she'd just been waiting for me. Looking back, I feel quite silly about it.

Fast forward to the present—we're both happily married, just not to each other. I have my lovely wife and her, well, she has her own.

We eventually reconnected when Facebook emerged, and it became very clear she's a lesbian. This revelation was the push I needed to finally let go of the fantasy of marrying her. Regardless, I'm thrilled with the family I have and she is equally joyous with hers. That's all that truly counts.

Boy and girl playingKampus Production , Pexels

20. The Best Kind Of College Wedding

At my college, we have this fun tradition for new students. Essentially, sophomores "adopt" first-year students as their "college kids" after participating in a sort of mock marriage, known as a "college marriage."

As the second semester began, I noticed that I hadn't taken part in this tradition yet. Meanwhile, most of the girls I was friends with had already gotten "college married." So, I joked with one of my best guy friends that if we didn't find girls to pair up with by the end of the semester, we'd "marry" each other.

Close to the end of the semester, a few of my friends were celebrating their "college marriage." My friend is really into math—so I decided to add a playful twist to the tradition. 

I made two paper rings and labeled them with "2x2 matrices" and "integers"—both math-related terms. During the dinner celebration, I had a little too much fun and ended up kneeling to propose with these rings.

Long story short, we ended up happily "college married," and now we even have three "college kids" who've continued the tradition and gotten "married" themselves!

Woman with paper ringBlack Sheep Media, Shutterstock

21. The Road Trip

Growing up, my wife and I were the best of friends. We jokingly promised each other that if we hadn't found love by 25, I would propose to her. Following high school, we each went our separate paths; I joined the army while she pursued nursing.

Once I concluded my military service, I returned to my hometown, Calgary, Alberta. Coincidentally, she was planning to attend the Calgary Stampede during her birthday. I invited her to catch up, and when we reunited, it felt as though no time had passed.

I asked if she'd be up for a road trip to Memphis, TN, to accompany me in purchasing a dream guitar. She agreed, and our journey evolved into an extensive USA road trip. On California's northern coast, I confessed my love for her. A year later, we were sharing a home. Another year passed, and I proposed to her in the same quaint coastal town.

Both of us were 25 at the time. The following September, we celebrated our dream wedding and bought our first house together. Since then, we've been soaking up life and exploring the world. Our most recent anniversary was spent in Italy. I couldn't be luckier to have such an incredible partner to journey through life with.

Young couple in the carUriel Mont , Pexels

22. The Arrangement

Both of us ended our marriages around the same time, though not to be together initially, and ended up cohabitating. One casual chat led to the revelation that we were each what the other had been seeking. Moreover, we enjoyed each other's company tremendously. The dating world had lost its charm for us by our mid-30s, so we agreed on what seemed more like a business contract. We had no clue where this might go—little did we know we were in for quite a twist!

What initially was just an 'agreement' gradually transformed into a passionate, meaningful relationship. We've been a couple for nearly seven years now, out of which we've been hitched for one. Our love for each other has grown deeper with time, and I wouldn't trade our experience for anything.

Man holding woman by handRDNE Stock project, Pexels

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23. This Is Why People Should Communicate Better

She was the life of the party, and I was the wallflower. Somehow, we ended up being the best of friends during high school. I couldn't help but have a major crush on her, but with her being out of my league, I wasn't going to risk our precious friendship.

I'm not exactly sure how the topic came up, but one day she suggested we should marry each other if we're both single by the age of 30. Considering it a joke, since she would probably find someone else before that, I awkwardly agreed and brushed it off. I played matchmaker and even paired her with another friend of mine, and they seemed perfect for each other.

After we graduated, she relocated to a different part of the country, and like many high school pals, we lost touch.

A couple of years later, I created a Facebook profile and managed to reconnect with her. She opened up about her deteriorating relationship with the guy I had introduced to her. The long-distance relationship didn't hold up, and he became distant, ignoring her calls. While I felt sorry for my other friend, I was overjoyed to hear her speak again.

However, our conversations started to get longer. She recalled our marriage pact, and she confessed that her relationship with our mutual friend was going nowhere, and she was exhausted from waiting for him. She admitted she had always had feelings for me but had kept silent out of fear of jeopardizing our friendship.

We dated long-distance for three years, catching up with each other during holidays and long breaks. After completing my college, I moved across the country to be with her. Five years ahead of our pact, we are set to get married this coming October.

Happy man working on a laptopfauxels , Pexels

24. The Most Special Person In Their Life

We first crossed paths at a school dance when we were in 7th grade, a day after she turned 12. We had this little teenage romance that lasted till 10th grade when she decided to call it off just before Christmas. 

I admit, I was a foolish kid back then. I was lucky enough though, she is the nicest and warmest person I've ever known, and we managed to stay friends despite my lack of maturity.

As high school and college flew by and we entered our mid-20s, we both had other relationships. Somewhere in the middle, we lightheartedly agreed to marry each other if we were still single by the time we were 35. Maybe we weren't entirely serious but there was no doubt we had deep affection for each other. 

We walked our separate ways for college, I went south, she went north. We didn't keep many old high school ties, but we never failed to touch base every month.

Fast forward to last Christmas, about 11 years after our break up, and coincidentally the first time both of us were single, she popped a surprising question: Have I ever thought about us getting hitched? She had sent a text a few days earlier, inviting me for a Christmas movie night. And that felt different, like a hint that this talk was coming up. 

So, I was prepared, and I had bought her a gift similar to the one I'd given her back in 7th grade. I gave her the gift and reminded her how incredibly special she has always been to me.

To cut a long story short, that talk might have been a lifesaver for me. Over the preceding year, I had fallen into a rut, dealing with depression and some unhealthy habits. I spilled my heart out to her and despite everything, she accepted me.

Fast forward two months, I bade farewell to the job I despised and chose to relocate to be with her. We've been cohabiting for the past four months, I've dropped the bad habits and refocused on the career path I always wanted. 

Two weeks ago, I proposed, she said yes, and I've never been more content. We jumped the gun and got married about 8 years ahead of our little "plan", but you won't hear me complaining.

Couple watching a moviecottonbro studio , Pexels

25. He Took The Hint

One day, my best friend of a decade casually mentioned that if both of us were single when she turned 30, we should just get together. Despite her beauty, I had never made a move. Why? Well, because I used to date her closest female friend, so I figured the universal "girl code" would stop me in my tracks.

However, her statement made me think—she might actually be interested in me! So, I took a leap of faith and went for it. Fast-forward six months from that discussion, and we tied the knot. The shift from friends to a couple, thankfully, was pretty smooth. Now, we're married for three years and blessed with two kids.

Couple with kids on the streetEmma Bauso, Pexels

26. Moving 2000 Miles

Around seven years back, my boyfriend and I formed a unique agreement. We initially met over the internet, started as friends, and over the years we've discussed our fair share of heartbreaks and love gone wrong. So, we promised each other that if we were both still single by the time we hit 30, I'd pack up my life and travel a whole 2,000 miles to be with him.

Unexpectedly, I made the big move when I was just 28. Fast forward two years, we're now engaged and I couldn't be in a happier place. Looking back, I have absolutely no regrets about the decision I made.

Woman with suitcaseOleksandr Pidvalnyi , Pexels

27. Officially Awkward

Two pals from high school made an unusual contract. While he was always secretly in love with her, she always dated different guys, clearly stating she'd choose him if no one else came along.

They began living under the same roof in their late twenties as "just roommates". A few years later, a night of shared intimacy occurred (and the morning after, they awkwardly reassured each other, "This doesn't mean we're a couple"). 

Then a few years passed, and they pretty much turned into a couple. Yet, she was always quick to deny their relationship status. When he hit 35, I asked if they had finally made it official. 

He replied, "She maintains that she only needs me for certain unspoken needs. Still, I once asked what she'd think if I dated someone else. She cryptically told me to go ahead, but warned that I would wake to find my 'little buddy' missing. So yes, you could say we're definitely in a relationship now!"

Woman yelling to a manMikhail Nilov , Pexels

28. From Mystery To Marriage

Do you recall Google Mystery Missions from years back?

In case you don't, it was a webpage where you could submit a request and other users would try to fulfill it. Each time you refreshed the page, new requests would appear. About 10 years ago, when we were both 14, I happened upon her request while looking for someone to chat with.

She lived in Memphis, while I was a Chicago resident. We quickly became inseparable. Over the years, we chatted every day. Around the age of 17 or 18, we made a pact that we'd marry by 30 if we were both still single. By then, we knew we had deep feelings for each other, but the idea of being together seemed unrealistic.

Thankfully, the tides of fate would change in our favor. After the pact, there were periods we didn't keep in touch. Whenever that happened, it felt like a vital part of me was missing. We each had relationships that didn't pan out. Then, about two years ago, we started discussing the possibility of us being together as a couple. 

We met in person for the first time around a year and a half ago. Now, we're engaged, and she found a new job in my city, Chicago.

Kid with a laptopEKATERINA BOLOVTSOVA, Pexels

29. Love Over An MMO

My hubby and I initially connected on Ultima Online, just two kiddos immersed in video gaming. We gradually moved from sharing email addresses to chatting on AOL Instant Messenger, and eventually Facebook, especially throughout our college years. Despite his constant assurance that our relationship was destined, I didn't fully believe him.

After college, I flew from South Carolina to Pennsylvania to see him, and things escalated quickly. We began dating, got engaged, and even tied the knot, all within an astonishing 18 months. In truth, we never imagined we'd even have the chance to meet in person, let alone be together. 

But here we are, about to celebrate seven years of marital bliss this upcoming weekend.

Girl playing videogame on PCTima Miroshnichenko , Pexels

30. Dodged That One

An old girlfriend of mine ended our relationship after about a year when I disclosed that I wasn't interested in getting married. Within a month, she began a relationship with a past high school pal. This guy was part of an agreement they made a long time ago to marry if they were still single by a certain age. 

Guess what? They tied the knot just three months later. As it turns out, she did me a favor. About a year after this, she rang me up. She told me she was expecting a baby but was at a loss about how to explain to her husband that he wasn't the father. Why? Because she was unsure herself due to her multiple affairs.

I quickly put an end to that awkward call and interestingly enough, haven't heard a peep from her since then.

Pregnant woman on the phoneYan Krukau, Pexels

31. Just Five Years To Go

This story is about a buddy of mine. He had once vowed that he would be married by the age of 30. Although he was married, he suffered heartbreak when he found out his wife was unfaithful, and then his dad passed away shortly after that. 

These events took a toll on him, leaving him unable to secure custody of his children due to a period of personal struggle. In the midst of this, when he was only 25, he reached out to an old friend with whom he had made this marriage pact on Facebook. 

She wasn't faring too well in the romance department either, busy juggling her job and raising her daughter. They agreed to give their pact a shot, thinking "why not?" Fast forward to six months later, they are together and from what I can see, they're as happy as two peas in a pod.

Mother and daughter in the kitchenKamaji Ogino , Pexels

32. Good Advice

My closest pal and I had this contract of sorts. When we were 15, we dated, we had our first painful split at 16, we patched things up and acknowledged that there was still a spark between us. But we also wanted to see what else was out there. So we promised each other that if we were both unattached at 30, we'd nix the wait and tie the knot.

We explored other relationships, attended university, relocated to different places, and lost touch for a bit owing to some envious partners. Yet, we reconnected, had an awkward fling but still remained firm friends. Then at 25, we figured that waiting for another five years was just unnecessary. 

We were compatible, we were best buddies and more importantly, we were in love. We had our fair share of wild adventures that were out of our systems. Now at 27, we're looking to get hitched around the age of 30, somewhat in line with our initial pact and we're as content as ever.

If I may pass on the most valuable relationship advice: Marry your best mate.

Couple having a breakfastBa Tik , Pexels

33. Choosing Your Best Friend

My wife and I have always been the closest of friends. Once, I found myself stuck in a highly challenging long-term relationship with a rather unpredictable ex-partner. When it was time for me to decide on a summer internship, I grasped the opportunity to create distance. 

With my ex heading to Taiwan, I moved across the country, the furthest distance possible from her on Earth. During this time, my wife and I remained in close contact, engaging in daily conversations. Although we wouldn't start dating for another couple of years, we made this fun little pact: if neither of us were married by 30, we'd tie the knot together. 

I didn't think much of this pact and, over time, lost contact with my wife for two whole years. As the summer before my final year of college rolled in, my wife invited me to join her for a school consulting competition in Hong Kong, where I'd be the financial lead. 

My ex, upon knowing, became furious and threatened to break all ties if I committed to the competition. That was the moment of realization for me. I knew that agreeing to the competition would mean ending my 6-year relationship, but it would also mean choosing my best friend—for life.

Looking back, it was undoubtedly the best decision I've ever made. We got married the previous February, followed by a 15-month honeymoon, during which we explored 31 different countries. My advice? Don't settle for chaos; you'll realize when you've met the right one.

Happy couple by the seaElle Hughes , Pexels

34. My Best Friend’s Sister’s Best Friend

My third-grade best friend had a twin sister. She would often be around when we celebrated birthdays or just hung out, and through those shared moments, we got to know each other. 

We both secretly liked each other throughout all these years, but it seemed fate played tricks on us, with one of us always in a relationship while the other was not. So, nothing really blossomed from that.

When I reached eighth grade, I had to move from Washington to Minnesota with my mom. But this didn't put a stop to our friendship. We kept contacting each other via AIM. Once, during a casual online chat, I confidently told her, "One day, I will marry you".

We committed to a playful pact that if we both were still single when we turned 30, we'd marry each other. Well, fast forward to last June when I turned 30. We've been happily married now since 2013. 

She's my best friend, my confidante; we discuss everything, avoid arguments, don't hold any grudges, and trust each other implicitly. I honestly believe that my life couldn't be any more perfect.

Couple laughing to each otherFotografia em Cápsula , Pexels

35. Earlier Than Anticipated

So, here's the story. My bestie and I go way back to our childhood days. It was no secret that we had a bit of a crush on each other. Despite this, we never managed to sync up in high school to actually start dating. We did, however, make a sort of joke promise to each other: If by 30 we were still single, we'd tie the knot.

Fast forward a few years. Jobs, colleges, life took us in different directions and we drifted apart, even exploring relationships with other people. But life has a funny way of coming full circle. We're back in each other's lives and I have a strong feeling that we might just keep our marriage pact but earlier than we ever thought.

Happy couple on the streetLuiz Woellner Fotografia, Pexels

36. A Different Point Of View

We've been through this too. Our relationship lasted four years, three of which we spent in marriage counseling, before we decided to divorce. That's when I gained a new and important perspective—it turns out, being a well-intentioned but insecure guy who ends up with his dream girl after her high school popularity fades, can lead to resentment.

Fast forward fifteen years and countless therapy sessions, I'm now joyfully married to a woman I deeply respect. I've also come to understand that I was the problem.

Man thinkingwayhomestudio , Freepik

37. Still A Chance?

Back when I was in my early 20s, there was this girl I used to have a casual relationship with now and then. 

Despite mainly spending time together amidst our social circles, we always ended up chatting away in one corner, somewhat detached from the group. Funny enough, we even made a promise to each other—if we both happened to be single by 30, we'd get married!

However, she eventually reunited with her ex-boyfriend and the pact was forgotten—at least by me.

Fast forward a decade, and she brought up our long-ago pact. Honestly, I was surprised—I had put it entirely out of my mind. Now, we're each happily married to other people.

That being said, we'll still chat now and then. She even sometimes mentions the idea that we might have been a phenomenal pair—which makes me worry if she's truly happy with where her life is now. It has been years since we last saw each other in person.

Man talking to a phoneRDNE Stock project , Pexels

38. No Hard Feelings

This story involves a close buddy of mine. She once suggested that if we were both still single at 35, we'd tie the knot.

Fast forward two years, and I asked her on a date. She was pretty surprised and didn't communicate with me for a full year. But later she invited me to her own wedding. I didn't harbor any resentment, so I decided to go.

Man watching wedding ceremony from outsideAnuj Gore, Pexels

39. A Modern Kind Of Marriage

I have some dear friends who are a gay man and a lesbian woman. They made up their minds that if they didn't find significant others, they'd tie the knot. Initially, the idea seemed disheartening—but it turned out incredible.

They now have two fantastic kids who are truly remarkable.

Although they're still searching for their dream partners, their authentic love for each other and their deep affection for their children are evidently clear.

Family with kids on the sofaKetut Subiyanto , Pexels

40. Together Forever

Though I didn't know my great-grandparents as well as I would've liked, they had a heartwarming tale to tell.

My great-grandparents, both young sweethearts since their kindergarten years, dated throughout high school until they had to part ways because of distance. They had a mutual agreement straight out of a love story—if fate brought them back together and neither was married, they would rekindle their old flame.

Years went by and my great-grandfather married a Serbian woman suffering from MS or another severe illness. He cared for her until she tragically passed away. Not long after her death, he stumbled upon my great-grandmother again, quite unexpectedly, at the supermarket! They started talking and she shared that she, too, had been married, and to a veteran.

After some time, her veteran husband passed away. She then reached out to my great-grandfather and they found solace in their shared experience of loss. They reconnected and rediscovered their affection for each other, leading them to tie the knot. Together, they adopted two children and lived a contented life until she also passed away.

An endearing detail is that she believed she would reincarnate as a monarch butterfly. They had a big backyard teeming with butterflies on their migration route to Mexico. Intriguingly, every year since she passed, one butterfly has always landed on his hand, staying briefly before continuing its journey. And every year, this same event heartwarmingly repeats.

A monarch butterflyLauren Hedges , Pexels

41. Better Than The Rest

Back in 8th grade, my husband and I were inseparable best buddies, finding it hard to click with the other kids at our school. Often joking we'd end up marrying each other because "no one else is worth it", although we never became a couple throughout high school. We had our own journeys, yet managed to maintain a solid friendship.

Post high school, we rekindled our closeness, began dating, and now, we're blissfully married.

Boy and girl at schoolNorma Mortenson , Pexels

42. Love In San Fran

Back in my university days, I had a female classmate whom I jived with extremely well. We'd study together, do group work, and help one another whenever possible. Hanging out with her was fantastic; she was not only incredibly cool, but also drop-dead gorgeous.

She maintained a long-distance relationship with her boyfriend, so we were just friends—which I respected. Especially given how poorly he treated her, often cheating or instigating pointless arguments when he came to visit, only to leave abruptly.

Despite the circumstances surrounding her relationship, our interaction was a joy. We shared many interests, helping each other even in courses where we weren't classmates.

In our final year, she let go of her unappreciative boyfriend. However, by then I was in a serious relationship myself, but that didn't preclude our friendship. One particularly intense, late-night study session led to a playful pact; if we were both single at 30, we'd marry each other and live our happily ever after.

Following graduation, I moved far away and she settled in San Francisco. Unfortunately, maintaining contact proved arduous and we slowly drifted apart.

Several years later, a business conference took me to San Francisco, where I thought it would be awesome to reconnect with her. To my surprise and delight, she contacted me, seeing my name on the attendee list as she was involved with organizing the conference.

We scheduled dinner ahead of the conference, easily rekindling our friendship like no time had passed. We had each weathered our share of relationship storms and were single again. She was as stunning as ever and, to cut a long story short, we ended up together.

After returning home, we spoke daily. Eventually, I decided to quit my job and move to San Francisco to live with her. We tied the knot at 35, and we're still going strong.

Couple having dinnerAndie Venzl , Pexels

43. Someone Get Spielberg On The Phone

Back in high school in the early '90s, I made a pact with a girl I was dating—let's say in around 9th grade for me and 10th for her. We had our ups and downs because of my silly mistakes, but by her senior year, we were on good terms again. 

Even as our lives took distinct paths, we kept in touch. She was more of a party goer, while I took the conventional path—college, the military, and then a career. One day, she caught me off guard with a call. She urged me to watch the NFL draft as her fiancé might get selected by a team in my home state, bringing us geographically closer. 

At that stage, I was married. Her fiance got drafted, and the distance between us was just a couple of hours. We met and celebrated his birthday before his first season started. He got traded around though, and they ended up living a few states away. By this time, I was engaged in combat in Iraq.

When I was deployed, she reached out again after spotting me in a trade magazine. She was single and had landed a job in my professional field. We began to reconnect, but strictly as friends. On my return, I found my marriage in shambles. My wife had been unfaithful and I chose to divorce. 

In this difficult period, I visited my friend who offered me a safe haven for a few days. We grew closer, sharing our experiences, despite her own drama and my tumultuous life. This reinforced a pact we had made after being friends for over 10 years. If we were both single at 30, we agreed to marry. 

The pact was no joke and even her parents were aware. Over time, we kept extending the age limit as we didn't feel ready. Soon, I met someone new and received another deployment notice all at once. The new girl was impressive, and I was hesitant to commit before being deployed again. 

During this phase, my old friend and I spent time together and she ended up agreeing to house-sit for me while I was away. Upon my return, I found my house in a mess and decided to propose to the new girl whom I had been in contact with throughout the deployment. We moved for my career, have been living together for 10 years, and are still happy.

Meanwhile, my old friend settled in my hometown, met someone, and married him. I still care for her and hope that she's in a better place now. But we've drifted apart and I've accepted that I'm not part of her life anymore.

Couple watching thru the windowMikhail Nilov , Pexels

44. The Joke Pact

We share around 35 jokes as a pact, and have these hilariously elaborate tales about becoming each other's secondary spouse either due to nature's course or even impossible, unnatural reasons. It's a wild narrative that's been evolving for the past 13 years or so that we've been best friends, and just gets crazier with each passing year.

The whole situation is incredibly humorous, and it gets even funnier—in fact, the three of us have even vacationed together and are planning a big international trip for when the pandemic finally subsides. I feel so lucky that they mesh together so seamlessly!

Friends at beachKindel Media , Pexels

45. Remaining Just Friends

When I was around 16 or 17, my buddy and I promised each other that if we were both single when we hit 30, we'd marry each other. I didn't think about the age difference much then, he was already in his mid-20s. A handful of years later, when I was just 24, he rang me up, asking about our pact.

Right around then he'd just gotten over a rocky break-up and I had just started a serious new relationship. Fast forward to now, I've been with the same partner for five years and counting. Throughout it all, my friend and I still manage to keep in touch.

Unfortunately, he's had his fair share of health struggles. Constant visits to the hospital have become routine for him. Heart problems seem to be at the core of it, perhaps a result of neglecting his health when he was much younger. Despite these obstacles, our friendship remains. 

That's not to say we agree on everything—his political beliefs are nothing like mine. But whenever debates do heat up, we always make it a point to respect each other's views and maintain our friendship.

Man at hospital bedDCStudio , Pexels

46. I Think So Too

My first significant relationship was from the time I was 17 to 18 years old; we split up but stayed on friendly terms. When I was about 20, we agreed to tie the knot at 40 if we were both still single. Our friends wholeheartedly supported us getting back together because they could see our strong bond and friendship.

Fast forward five years and he got hitched, cut off all contact with me by blocking me on every platform, and I haven't heard from him since. So, I guess the deal we had is probably off.

Sad woman with her laptopAndrea Piacquadio , Pexels

47. The Uncle’s Tribute

My mom's best friend and my uncle once promised each other that if they were both still single by the time they were 30, they'd get married. She was just 18, and he was only 19, but they'd been close pals for over five years already.

The common thread between them was my mom who brought them together; she firmly believed they were the perfect match. Shortly after making their pact, they started dating and were genuinely joyful.

However, she came from an abusive home and struggled with depression. Our family supported her the best we could, offering her a safe place at my mom's house whenever she needed refuge from the chaos at her home. Tragically, she died by suicide at age 25, leaving my uncle and the rest of us heartbroken.

Even so, my uncle honored their pact in the most poignant way. On what would have been her 30th birthday, he arranged a large memorial gathering. He invited all her friends, our family, and anyone who had a place for her in their hearts, except for her own family, who my mom recalls had callously shrugged off their daughter's death as a minor hiccup.

My uncle celebrated that day as both her birthday and their would-be wedding anniversary till the end of his days. He remained a bachelor for life. However, he did adopt a baby girl and broke convention by giving her a middle name – after my mom’s best friend. 

He defied the usual Indian tradition where middle names typically represent the father's first name and instead gave his daughter a special middle name.

Old man watching a photocottonbro studio, Pexels

48. Just Put A Ring On It

I met a girl back in kindergarten and we quickly became best friends, even childhood sweethearts. That is, until we were nine, and she moved away abruptly, breaking our bond.

Many moons later, when I was a teen at the age of 15, I bumped into her at a party during one of her trips back to visit family. We got back in touch, swapping numbers for the then-popular chat service ICQ. Our friendship picked up again.

Two years passed, and she decided to complete her final year of high school in our hometown. Barely a month after she returned, we began dating. Life took a twist though—I got admission to a college in a different city and she moved overseas.

We had irregular chats every now and then, even late-night calls where she'd rant about her boyfriend and life. Such calls didn’t sit well with my live-in girlfriend, who didn't appreciate me being woken up by another girl, even one who lived 2,000 miles away.

Many years later, we were still in this undefined, on-again, off-again relationship. The internet made it easy to keep tabs on her. I saw her as my "one that got away"—the dream I could never fulfill.

Fast-forward to three years ago when she phoned me on my birthday and told me she was single again and was moving to my city. The stark realization hit me then—I had been in love with her my whole life but wasn't sure what to do with that realization. Things didn't exactly pan out as I hoped, though.

While she did move, we never really reconnected. I broke up with my then-girlfriend, moved on, and even got a chance to live overseas.

Eventually, we ran into each other on the streets when I was out shopping. We grabbed a few drinks and talked for hours, discovering we lived but a stone's throw from each other, and things took a natural course.

We kept in touch a lot over the week that followed. Our next meeting, however, was filled with nostalgia and a hint of melancholy. We had found our way back to each other only to have life tear us apart again. We mourned our promises never fulfilled, even as we made a pact to be together when we turned 40, no matter the distance.

My job contract ends next February, and I am planning to visit her for her 30th birthday. I want to tell her I can't wait another decade. She might feel the same, or she may not. But if it means waiting a lifetime for her, I probably will.

Happy couple in the parkKaterina Holmes, Pexels

49. Love At First Sight

I was in an on-and-off relationship with a fabulous woman for several years. It wasn't always steady, we both saw other people during this period. Our respective statuses as single parents further complicated the situation. But there was always a unique bond between us, as we could freely discuss our other relationships without a trace of envy.

We evolved into a friends-with-benefits situation for some time. One evening, while chatting on MSN, we playfully pledged to marry each other if we were both single at 40. The idea stuck with me, making me believe that marriage was on the cards. Little did I know, life had a different plan for me.

During one of our less active periods, I found myself at her place, repairing her washing machine. Her sister dropped by to say hello, and it was obvious she held my attention. I could tell there was some interest from her side too, but I decided not to act on it then.

After some online banter, I told my friend jokingly that I might be interested in her sister. She responded in jest, pointing out that her sister is happily married.

As it turns out, that happiness was overstated. The sister's husband wasn't quite the catch. Long story short, I've been blissfully married to her sister for the past four years.

Clueless man thinkingbenzoix , Freepik

50. Got Game Even At Fourteen

We first connected on an online forum back when I was 21 and in school. Initially, our identities were masked by our anonymous usernames, and we weren't even aware of each other's gender. Once he figured out I was a woman, he falsely assumed I must be unattractive, which explained my presence amongst the tech enthusiasts on the forum.

 On the other hand, when I realized he was a man, I jumped to the conclusion that he must be middle-aged. Despite the imagined age gap, I thought maybe I could make things work.

Turns out, he was just 14 years old. And suddenly, a relationship was not feasible.

However, this caused a problem as we were slowly falling in love. Eventually, we came to a unique agreement—if I was still single at 60, I'd marry him. He managed to negotiate that down to 40. We made attempts to date other people, but it was futile because our hearts were set on each other. 

Despite being separated by state lines or national borders, we talked daily, usually through online chats. We finally tied the knot when I was 29, and he had just celebrated his 23rd birthday; an age difference that seemed much more acceptable.

Fast forward to today, we've been happily married for 14 years.

Couple having a cocktailsHelena Lopes, PexelsSources: , ,


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