Me and my girlfriend have been dating for more than 7 years now. We both have been together in US for around 6 1/2 years. I was on F1 student visa and She is a US citizen. We had our life planned and nothing was stopping us from being together. I am currently enrolled in a university and pursuing my masters degree. My girlfriend lives with me and has a full time job as well.
Last December I came home (Sri Lanka) for vacation and had to renew my student visa because my previous visa was expired. I was rejected F1 visa twice for very unfair reasons and given the 214g form. I was told by many people I might be stuck here for a while with the current immigration situation in US. They are rejecting almost all the F1 visas in my country.
So the only way to be back with my girlfriend soon and to continue my studies is the K1 visa. We have lot of evidence to prove our relationship is legitimate but we have not had an engagement.
Do we really need to have an engagement before applying for K1 visa?
What effects will have my F1 visa rejections towards the K1 visa?