What to Say When You're Proposing
I've been interested in learning about how I can help to take already great and planned marriage proposals, to extraordinary and unforgettable proposals. The locations, decorations, ring, ring boxes, flowers, music, etc. etc. can all be planned out accordingly. I realized recently after talking to a few potential clients that it wasn't just the planning that scared them. What scared a lot of people was what they were going to say.
D'Arcy Benincosa just gave an incredible talk on her Instagram (@darcybenincosa) about the importance of storytelling. I learned a lot about how I need to share with all of you lovelies the types of stories I will be portraying for you with my services. This got me thinking about how storytelling is also essential to proposals.
When I plan a proposal, the first thing I want to know about a couple is their story. The little details in the beginning and middle of a relationship are just as important as the major milestones you experience together. For those of you who don't need my professional help planning your big moment, here is a guide that can help you figure out what your going to say without any clichés.
I hate all things too cheesy, unless they are in romance movies or on my food. So let's start in the least cheesy way we can- the beginning of your story. Where does your story begin? This can have a lot of variations:
- Did you meet in a unique way?
- I know a couple who met when he slammed into her car in an intersection.
- Did you have an interesting first date?
- I met my boyfriend for the first time when I spontaneously got on a flight across the East Coast to meet him. It started out awkward to say the least.
- Did you or your partner say something totally outrageous or romantic that you'll never forget?
- "I don't want to give my number to you because I think you're a robot." - This has actually happened folks.
Beyond just the milestone of starting a relationship, the little details that happened from then to now are the most important. When clients tell me they can't remember what I call "AWH" moments, I encourage them to look into the memory box they may have (places where some people store all the cards, items, and special moments that have happened in their lives or relationships). If you don't have a memory box to look in, no worries. Here are a few questions to jog your memory:
- Is there a memory that you or your partner never let the other forget?
- On his first date, a chef decided to cook his date steak. Out of nervousness, he burnt the steak until it was basically inedible. On Easter that same year, he screwed up their meal again and they had to order pizza. His now girlfriend thought it was so funny that every holiday she asks him if he's too nervous and if she should leave the room.
- Is there a small memory significant to the growth of your relationship?
- Think the losing a slipper scene in Cinderella.
- Is there something your partner hates?
- That one pair of pants with a hole in them that you refuse the throw out. (come on man throw them out already)
- How the way you fold your t-shirts is different than their's when you're doing the laundry
- How you always leave your tea bags in the sink (I'm so guilty of this)
Time to channel your inner cuteness
Think long and hard about this one. What is one moment in your relationship or life together that they don't already know about? If you and your partner are best friends, that is a difficult question to find an answer to. Here are a few thought provoking questions to help out:
- When did you realize you loved them?
- On a date to the lighthouse, one girl started hiking up and down the jetties in her flip flops and denim mini skirt. He instantly knew she was the one.
- Something you love about them?
- Loving the way they sing and dance around the house when they are cleaning
- Loving how they always have to apply a face mask on Friday and you know all the times each one should be applied and taken off
The toughest question.
My last question for you, which may sound obvious, is why are you proposing? Most likely, it is because you want to spend the rest of your life with this person. Here are a few variations on how you can say that:
- I can't wait to (insert activity here) with you for the rest of my life.
- I want to love you for as long as my time on Earth allows.
- I always _____ but I will ____ for the rest of my life if that means I can love you.
- I wish I could list all the reasons I love you right now, but that would take hours and I've been waiting (insert amount of time) to say these words to you : (the obvious will you marry me goes here)
- We are busy people, with busy lives, and in the small pauses you are the thing that keeps me going. I want to experience those small pauses for the rest of our lives.
Now that I’ve found you, theres nothing left for me to search for.
Everything I’ve wondered about my entire life was answered when I met you.
I’ve filled my life with things that mattered, but I’ve found what matters most of all.
Every time I dream of your face, I want to wake up and see it next me.
I never want to drink my morning (insert drink such as coffee) alone again
I want to go to sleep every night fighting over the blankets with you
^^ mostly accurate for everyone
1. Where does your story begin?
2. What are the little details?
3. The one moment they don't know about.
4. Why are you proposing?
And put them all together!
Here's an example:
"When we first met online, I never imagined you would fly across the East Coast to meet me for the first time. Especially because I thought you were a robot. But, I promise to finally throw away those pants you hate if you stop leaving your tea bags in the sink. I love how I know that your aloe face mask has to stay on for 15 minutes, but your clay mask can only stay on for 5. I burn the food on the holidays, but I will eat pizza on every holiday for the rest of my life if that means I can love you forever. (Insert name here), will you marry me?"
If you take all of your answers to these questions, you can compile an organized and thoughtful proposal speech that would make Nicholas Sparks proud. Don't forget to write this down! Even if you're not going to read off a piece of paper during the big moment, you can keep your initial thoughts to cherish or use later in your vows!