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Important etiquette for those proposing in 2023


HacKLeR | Shutterstock

Cerith Gardiner - published on 05/22/23

Here are just a few things to consider when you want to pop the question.

In times gone by, marriages were often arranged, or parents were heavily involved in the matchmaking. This then changed to parents giving their blessing to their child’s future spouse, with the fiance asking his intended’s parents for their daughter’s hand in marriage.

Today things are continuing to change, with the boyfriend no longer quaking in his boots in case his beloved’s father refuses to allow his daughter to marry. However, there are things the modern couple should consider when they decide to say “yes” to each other.

The parents

While it’s widely accepted that the future groom no longer has to get the father’s permission, it’s still a gesture that is appreciated, and one that shows respect. If you and your future in-laws get on well, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t ask permission — they’ll not only feel respected, they can get excited about the impending announcement.

If you don’t really get on well with your bride-to-be’s parents, the gesture might help thaw relations, and it might open up a dialogue about how you envision your future together. It might be worth a go, and if the answer is “no” then you need to consider what that really means to you.

Popping the question

There are a myriad of ways to ask for your beloved’s hand in marriage, but it’s important that you consider what your bride really would want. Some women love a public declaration of love, others don’t. So make your proposal meaningful by doing something you know your bride-to-be will appreciate.

It’s also vital to remember that this is a very personal moment between the two of you. It doesn’t need to be live streamed on social media. Make the occasion intimate, and not about looking picture perfect for the Instagram posts to follow — if you’re desperate to make public announcements, you can always take appropriate photos or videos after the proposal, but be careful when you share them online (see below).

The announcement

A wedding is a family affair. Therefore, when it comes to social media, put the smartphones down and share your happy news with loved ones personally. Pop in and give your grandmother the news she’s been dying to hear in person, or at least give her a call.

This will not only make your relatives and close friends feel they’re important in your lives, it will also put family at the heart of your marriage from the very start.

The timing

Speaking of announcements, there have been stories of couples announcing their happy news at other people’s weddings or big events. This is terrible etiquette. It’s important to not upstage someone else’s happy occasion with your news, and just think, it’s lovely to spread the happiness over time. Save your news for when people can really focus on your future marriage.

Catholic LifestylemannersMarriage
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