There are a few moments in a man’s life he’ll remember forever: getting behind the wheel of his first car, the birth of his children, the day he meets the love of his life. There is one moment, however, that is unique. One filled with excitement, anxiousness and wonder. That day is the day he proposes. A marriage proposal is something special, and you no doubt want it to be special. After all, it’s a day you’ll be telling your grandchildren about one day. It doesn’t have to be perfect (most of the best stories aren’t) but it should be something worth remembering.
Unfortunately, not every proposal is a beautiful one. Nerves tend to get the best of you if you’re not careful, leading you to make some very common mistakes. Not sure what to avoid? Here are a few helpful tips.
Always Ask With a Ring
We’ve all heard that old saying, “diamonds are a girl’s best friend.” However, it’s an important part of any marriage proposal and one that many women expect. While you may be committing your love and life to her, many women won’t feel like they have actually been proposed to if they don’t walk away with a ring on their finger. Don’t show up empty handed.
So, what if you don’t know what type of ring she’ll like? If you’d rather leave the ring shopping up to her, consider a placeholder in the meantime. Many jewellery stores have return policies that allow you to pick out something for now and then go back with your fiancée on your arm to pick out the real deal. Not going to surprise her? If the two of you have decided to avoid the traditional engagement surprise, take her shopping beforehand. Let her pick out the cut and clarity she wants within your budgetary boundaries.
Wait Till She’s Ready
Maybe you knew from the first moment you laid eyes on her that she was the one for you. Maybe you were ready to commit within just a few weeks of dating. That doesn’t necessarily mean she is. She may be infatuated or even in love with you, but marriage is a big commitment, and not one she’ll likely take lightly. Wait for the signs that show you she’s ready to take that next step. Spend some time in the relationship, really getting to know one another and going through the ups and downs that relationships bring. Once you’ve weathered that, and she still appears willing to stick by your side, then you can go ring shopping.
Wear the Right Clothing
This is a magical day/afternoon/night. Don’t let the romance slip away simply because you didn’t dress the part. While you may not be the type of man who regularly wears men’s tweed jackets, suits or dress shirts on a regular basis, this is not the time for clothing you wear when sitting at home watching the big game. This is the time to step up your own game- especially your style.
With that being said, consider carefully where you are going to propose before you choose your wardrobe. A Michelin star restaurant demand men’s suits and a tie, while a tweed jacket would be more appropriate if you’re going to take her on a horse-drawn carriage ride through the park.
Keep it Private
You want to share your special moment with friends and family, but sharing the joyous event should come after the proposal has been accepted, not during it. Proposing in a public place surrounded by everyone she knows may push your future bride to say yes before she is ready. Or, worst case scenario, could leave you heart-broken in front of an audience if she happens to say she isn’t ready for that level of commitment yet.
Proposing in private also gives the two of you a chance to dwell in your “love bubble” for a little while and enjoy the fact that you are going to live happily ever after. You don’t have to worry about the moment being pushed aside as complete strangers, friends and family attempt to congratulate you. The congratulations will come later; for now, savour the moment.
Don’t Rush it
For the rest of your life, your bride will be telling the story of how you proposed. How do you want that story to go? Do you want it to begin with, “Well, we were standing in line at the theatre when I noticed something in the pocket of his men’s suit. When I asked him what it was, he pulled out a ring box and asked me to marry him.” Or do you want it to go the exact way you planned for it to?
Once you’ve decided to get engaged and have purchased the ring, it may burn a hole in your pocket. You may be anxious to get the proposal over with, and may find it difficult to hide your intentions from her. If you truly want your story to be one for the ages, don’t rush things. Find the perfect moment to pop the question, and don’t ask a minute before that.
Keep it Quiet
You’ve recruited her best friends to help you determine her ring size, the type of ring she wants and where she’s always dreamed of proposing. Her mum tells you she has dreamed of a romantic proposal since she was a little girl and instructs you that wearing a suit and getting down on one knee is not an option you can avoid. Her cousin has filled you in on a few small ‘don’ts’ for the proposal as well: she isn’t going to be happy if she has to dig through food for the ring.
Sounds wonderful, right? You have all her friends and family working with you for the perfect proposal.
Wrong. While you might need the help of one or two of her closest friends, keep the circle of those who know about the engagement as small as possible. This not only reduces the chances that someone might accidentally let the big surprise slip, but also gives her a chance to really surprise those she loves with the great news after the fact.
Are you ready to pop the question? With the right men’s suits or men’s tweed jacket, a beautiful ring and a perfectly-timed proposal, you could create a story she’ll be telling for the rest of your life. Make it a good one by following these tips.