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How to Propose Marriage to a Guy

by Karen L. Blair

Although marriage proposals have traditionally been presented to women by their male suitors, growing gender equality as well as the legalization of same-sex marriage in many domestic and international jurisdictions is leading to more men being on the receiving end of marriage proposals. If you want to propose to your boyfriend, the process is not that different than how someone might propose to their girlfriend. Here are some tips to get you started.

How to Ask a Man to Marry You

Make sure that the time is right. Your marriage proposal shouldn't be the first time you discuss the topic. You should be generally certain of the answer you'll receive and that both you and your boyfriend have intentions of spending your lives together as a couple. If you find yourself thinking of proposing as a way of 'saving' the relationship, this might be a hint that it is not the right time to propose.

Find the right ring, or alternative to a ring. Do some research about his style and the types of rings he may like. Take a look at his existing rings to get an idea of the style he tends to wear. For example, does he like large rings with stones, or does he prefer simple bands? You will also need to determine his ring size. If he has a ring that fits his ring finger already, you can try to get this ring sized. If you can't, don't worry; most rings can be resized. If your boyfriend is not the ring-wearing type, you'll have to be more creative in what you offer during the actual proposal. Some examples might include a small box with an intricate key inside to represent "the key to your heart" or, if you are a very pragmatic couple, you might consider presenting him with a financial investment towards your future life together.

Plan the details of your actual proposal. Although spontaneity can be a great thing in romance, you want a marriage proposal to be something special that you both remember for the rest of your lives. Consider your boyfriend's personality, the special aspects of your relationship together, and your boyfriend's interests and hobbies and tailor your proposal to personally suit your boyfriend and your relationship. Pop the question in the location where you first met, or where you shared your first kiss. Invite family and friends to be present, or have them wait nearby to share in the celebrations. You can also arrange to have a photographer present to capture the special moment to be preserved forever. Ultimately, marriage proposals are an opportunity to show your creativity and your love, so have fun and avoid rushing the planning stage.

Pop the question. Ultimately, regardless of what you choose to present to your boyfriend and how you choose to do so, the main part of your proposal will be actually asking him to marry you. The words you say should be heartfelt and sincere. Spend some time thinking about what you want to say and how to say it. Write down your thoughts and form an idea in your head of what you want to say. When it comes time to propose, do your best to relax and just let the words flow.

Tip

  • It's normal to be nervous when proposing. It can help to practice what you will say in advance with a friend or family member.

Warning

  • Be careful to consider your boyfriend's personality when making a proposal. If he is shy and not very social, he may not like to be the center of attention in a very public venue. Although you probably want the proposal to be a surprise, be sure to tailor the details of the surprise to the likes and preferences of your boyfriend.

About the Author

Karen L. Blair has been professionally writing since 2001. Her work has been published in academic journals such as the "Journal of Sex Research," "Journal of Social and Personal Relationships" and "Psychology & Sexuality." Blair received her M.Sc. in psychology at Acadia University and her Ph.D. in social psychology at Queen's University. She is currently a post-doctoral fellow and research consultant.

Photo Credits

  • Doug Menuez/Valueline/Getty Images