Have you been dating for months, years or (gasp) even a decade? If you think you have finally found “the one” and are ready to settle down, getting married is the next normal step in most cultures. However, getting hitched, tying the knot, acquiring a ball and chain can be an unnerving, if not downright scary, endeavor. But, one that if undertaken with cool, calm collectedness and a bit of preparation can lead to years and years of happiness with your girlfriend; just ask a long-time married couple that you know.
Guys, planning a proposal and ultimately getting married starts with one thing; and no, that’s not a couple shots from your personalized flask of whiskey. The first think you’ll want to do, if you want to get off to a good start with the future in-laws is to ask permission from your sweetheart’s father. I know, I know; this sounds hopelessly old-fashioned and I’m sure you’re a bit worried that he’ll not receive the request with a big smile on his face and a joyful slap your back. Even though the tradition of asking the father for a bride’s hand in marriage started hundreds of years ago, is still relevant today – especially if you hope to have a great relationship with her dad (perhaps enjoy years of golfing, fishing, and taking on fix-it-up projects around the house). Even if your bride-to-be’s parents aren’t expecting such a modern guy as yourself to kowtow to old rituals, they will be touched by the gesture of respect! Earn brownie points and maybe even receive better wedding gifts from her folks!
Another detail of planning the proposal is selecting an engagement ring. Guys, please note that the engagement ring and wedding ring are two different animals. The engagement right is the “big bling,” traditionally with a large diamond, that you present as a gift for the bride upon asking a girl to marry. The wedding band is exchanged during the vows on the wedding day and can be as simple as a plain gold band or one that is encrusted with precious stones.
Looking for an engagement ring isn’t as straightforward as buying groomsmen gifts; there are several important things to remember. First, before you hit the jewelry store, learn what diamond ratings mean so that you are making the most educated purchase possible. That being said, the rating doesn’t necessarily indicate beauty or the “wow” factor, so make sure that you see the ring in person before purchasing. If purchasing the ring as a surprise, there are several ways to find out what style your sweetie might like the best. Keep your ears and eyes open to capture any favorable comments she might make about friends rings; those casual remarks make great hints. You can also window shop for rings with the hint of maybe “someday” popping the question. You can also ask her mother, sister or close friend to accompany you on the shopping trip. Whatever you do, make sure that the store has a return or exchange policy that you are comfortable with just in case the bride doesn’t long the ring as much as you hoped.
Are you planning to ask your girlfriend’s father for her hand in marriage? What would you do if he said “no”? Let us know in the comments below