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Monday 18 April 2011

Would you propose to your boyfriend? Marie Claire - and I - ask the question

Would you propose to your boyfriend?

That's the question being asked by a brilliant feature story in April 2011 edition of Marie Claire Australia.

It got me thinking about my own proposal, and my view on the whole matter.

One thing to me is clear: men need a nudge.

It's a theory I have held to be true over the years; that all men - no matter how loved-up, how besotted, how enamoured with their girlfriend - need some kind of hint.

In most cases (and I am by NO means a relationships expert!), the man wants to marry his girl. Wants to be her husband.

But I firmly believe they need to be sold on the idea that this woman will, let's face it, be the last person he shags, the last person he wakes up next to, the last woman he will have, well, first-time sex with.

My bestie alerted me to this concept years ago... when I wondered why my boyfriend talked about marriage, was super-keen on the whole idea, even explicitly talked about yes, being married to me... but hadn't popped the question yet. She said she'd observed women for years (after being a little exasperated herself that her BF would never put a ring on it, after years of dating and many, many months of living together) who would drop major hints to their boys.

And here's the clincher: they made them think it was all their idea to propose. A little sneaky? Perhaps. They got what they desired? Yes!

If it all sounds a little 1950s housewife, bear in mind that there are plenty of modern, intelligent women who want to be married. Heck, crave it even. And yet, they are so ashamed that they should even deign to 'lower' themselves to have to convince someone to commit to them. And that part is true. Why anyone needs convincing that you're a fab human being and would make a great life partner is a bit... upsetting for the person doing the convincing.

But what's the alternative? For them to date their boyfriend, perhaps live with them, and know that deep down they instead want to be married (I will stress here that marriage is not for everybody, and not every woman - or man - wants to be married.) Or know that being in a de facto relationship is really not for them, but they went with the flow, when really, they want to be engaged, ensconced, sport some shiny bling to tell the world they're heading to the altar (or the beach, registry office, or local park)?

The fact is they really want to be married, and don't want to feel old-fashioned for wanting that.

As for me, well, I'd been dating said boyfriend for over a year and right from the outset I always told him I was the marrying kind. I had a plan (ask most women, they have one too... some just won't reveal it) and that meant married by x, a wife for y years, then have a baby by x age. I know that's a little old school for today's times, but I don't care.

There was no pressure of any sort. I was just very upfront about what I wanted. And I didn't deviate from that. So, in the end, when he did propose, yes it was his idea. Had I expressed my desire that I'd be happy to be his wife. Of course I did! Why wouldn't I tell him that?

Would I have proposed? It's a resounding no from me on that one.

What about you? What did you do? Are you 'waiting' for a ring? Would you consider proposing? Comment!

As for the article in Marie Claire (on-sale now), it's an interesting read on the issue, with both sides represented, including street vox pops on the whole matter. Buy it and leave it lying around if that's where you're heading... just sayin'!

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