The big splashy public proposal has become quite a “thing” in recent years. There seem to be a lot of men out there who are either worried that their girlfriend won’t say no if the proposal isn’t grand enough or maybe they just want her to have a memorable engagement story. It is really a personal choice – some women would die of embarrassment to have their face on a JumboTron, while others would relish the excitement. This article takes a look at whether popping the question should be a public event or a quiet moment shared between just the two of you.

Think About What She Wants: Is your girlfriend the type who loves a big splash or is she more low key? If your intended is the sort of woman who would love a huge surprise party for her birthday, then she might be really into the idea of a big public proposal. The moment where you drop to one knee and pull out the box with the sparkling wedding jewelry, the tears of joy, the cheers of the onlookers – certainly some ladies would eat that stuff up. If that sounds like your girlfriend, then by all means, pop the question in a very public setting.

Think About Your Anxiety Level: Let’s face it: a lot of men are so nervous when they ask a woman to marry them that they can barely get the words out. If you are filled with anxiety and get sweaty palms every time you think of proposing, the last thing that you need is the pressure of doing it in front of a crowd. And for goodness sake, if there is any question in your mind at all about what her answer will be, do not pop the question in front of others. Just image how humiliating it would be to be turned down or hear “I need to think about it” with other people watching. Some men also feel like if they are going to make a big deal over the proposal, they also need a huge sparkly ring to give as her engagement jewelry. It might be a shallow concern, but it is a concern for some folks nonetheless.

Think About Spontaneity Versus Careful Planning: In my mind the chief appeal of the grand public proposal is that your girlfriend will know that you put a lot of time and effort into asking for her hand in marriage, which is sure to make her feel very special. However, once you have gone to all that effort, you pretty much have to carry through with the proposal at the appointed time, even if the moment doesn’t feel particularly right. A private engagement leaves open the possibility of spontaneity. If you are suddenly struck by the feeling that the moment is right when you are doing the Sunday New York Times crossword together, you can pop the question right then and there.

Think About the Memory You Want To Have: A dear friend of mine recently wrote an article in which she reminisced about the very simple way her now-husband proposed to her. It was in their home, not on any special occasion, and there was no big build-up to the moment. So what does she remember the most about the proposal? The words spoken by her husband. And what were those words? No one knows but the two of them, and there is something very romantic about that shared beautiful secret.

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