Weddings

Is It Possible to Remain in a Relationship After a Proposal Rejection?

Are Catherine Cooper and Lyle Mackenzie trying to make it work on Southern Charm Savannah after a "no" to marriage?

Catherine Cooper and Lyle Mackenzie … will they or won’t they walk down the aisle?

The Southern Charm Savannah couple have had their share of ups and downs, but when it comes to marriage it seems like the answer is a solid no.

After Lyle asked Catherine's father for her hand in marriage, and kind of proposed, she went ahead and asked him, well ... can you not? 

Catherine had told The Daily Dish that she was "surprised" to see all of this talk of marriage from Lyle, and that she doesn't want to rush into anything. "It’s a big thing to move forward with when I think it’s important for us to have that conversation and to be on the same page. And we really hadn’t had a chance to talk about it," she explained. "You know, obviously with everything going on the past 10 weeks, there was a lot of, we just didn’t really have a chance to have the conversations that I feel like are necessary leading up to this big moment."

Now Lyle is trying to decide whether he should move on or not. Their relationship is currently undefined.

Therapist Jason Ross says it’s “possible” to stay with someone when you’ve rejected their proposal (or they’ve rejected yours) but it’s not “probable.”

“The proposer would have to have inordinate self-worth and confidence, let alone the drive to stay in the relationship thinking they could fix it,” he says. “Not to mention most people would suggest if you have enough self-worth you should move on. That person [who proposed] would be constantly waiting, hoping, likely bringing it up constantly, trying to fix it and convince the partner. ‘Are we there yet? Are we there yet?’ The rejection is potentially the biggest narcissistic wound we know of. And to many marriage is the ‘end all be all.’ With a sixty percent divorce rate, I would say it is often the end, but people keep trying.”

Ross says in order to make this work, each partner would need “individual therapy, plus some joint counseling.”

“They would have to be in agreement that the partner who rejected the proposal wants to make it happen eventually. I'm an optimist by nature, but this would be like trying to heal a deep jagged cut with no antibiotics, expecting no scar.”

Ouch.

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