Post # 1
Just curious here: the latest worry that’s come upon my impatiently waiting brain is that, a couple weeks ago, as I was having a general discussion with my parents about the possibility of me getting married, I asked my dad if he would want my SO to ask his (my dad’s) permission to marry me. He said “Yes!!! Of course!” Eeurgh.
This is problematic for 2 reasons: One, I’m not my parents’ property, and I can marry whomever I like without it being contingent on anyone else’s opinion– that’s what THEY brought me up to believe, and I feel strongly about that! So why would my SO have to ask (I know, it is because my father strangely is traditional that way and views it as a respectful thing to do). Two, my parents and my SO have a difficult relationship (we are accustomed to it, please don’t ask for details), so if my SO knew my father wants him to ask permission, I have a feeling that may delay our probably still far-off engagement. Because he believes, more strongly than I do, that deciding about relationships/marriage is totally personal and only the couple’s business. But I think if my SO did ask my dad, it would improve my parents’ opinion of him, which would be nice.
My feeling is that I’d need to, at some point, when engagement seems more imminent than it does now, alert my SO to the fact that my father wants to be asked. And that I think it’s probably respectful and right for him to ask even if my SO and I don’t ascribe to the tradition ourselves. But ugh, I don’t look forward to telling my SO that, as he seems to already have nerves about engagement when I bring it up. . . .Evidently he’s not ready yet (to my growing frustration) so I probably shouldn’t bother worrying anyway, but I’m finding the Bee helpful in clarifying my opinions about things of this sort!
Hmph. Anyone with a similar experience/issue? What did you do about it? How did you indicate to your SO that your dad expected to be asked? Thanks.
Post # 3
I don’t consider myself property or anything like that either but I thinkit’s really sweet when the man “declares his intentions” and asks the parents for their blessing. I told SO he has to ask my dad. I think it’s adorable, respectful, and a way of letting the parents in on the happiness and excitement. I think you are over thinking it!
Edit: I also come from the perspective that it’s asking for a blessing, not permission. If for some reason the parents say HELL NO you can’t marry my daughter! It kind of sucks, but wouldn’t change the course of events. It’s just …nice.
Post # 4
@Creiddylad: My parents wanted to be “asked”, but not like, Can I have her hand? More like, a man to man (and man to Mom) conversation about his intentions, his goals, and how he plans on helping to support a family (financially/emotionally, etc). So and my family haven’t had the opportunitiy for a serious talk like that, so that would be a good time (during the “asking” talk). I am very liberal and do not consider myself property, but in the same way I would expect SO to talk to his family before making this big decision, I would want him to be on the same page with my family.
Post # 5
My Fiance was in his mid 40s, and I was in mine, when we met and became engaged. He told me on the second date that, if he asked me to marry him, he would ask my father’s blessing.
I think it is a wonderful, special tradition, and, since your father said that he would like to be asked, I definitely think you should mention this to your Fiance in a casual conversation so that he is aware of this.
If you present it as asking for your father’s blessing, instead of his “permission,” this may not feel quite as awkward to you and your Fiance.
Post # 6
Great idea, everyone who suggested presenting it as asking a “blessing” rather than “permission.” Phew!
Post # 7
My fiance asked too.I agree that it is more of a way for the man to declare his intentions.I think its respectful and sweet.
Post # 8
agree with the other PPs on asking for blessing, not permission. i would definitely let your SO know that it would mean a lot to you if he did this. my Boyfriend or Best Friend did this – asked for blessing from my dad. he did it nearly two months ago (more than 6 months before he plans to proprose!) , because him and my parents also don’t have much of a relationship (long story), and wanted them to have time to come around to the idea if they could.
my dad actually didn’t give him his blessing (my family background etc. another long story), but my parents both know that i can and will marry whoever i want, and even though we didn’t get the answer we wanted, i’m still glad my Boyfriend or Best Friend did this. he wasn’t scared of it at all, even though he knew he’d probably get a no, because he knows we’ll prove them wrong 🙂
Post # 9
I think it is sweet when the Fiance to be wants to talk to the father, or to both of the parents. I really wanted my Fiance to do it and I was worried he would not b/c he is a little shy and says he is a little intimidated by my father. But he did and with out me knowing, he called them and said he had gotten a ring wanted to have lunch and show it to them. They meet a few days later and from what I have heard it was more of a, this is what Im doing are you guys on board? lol…. It was great though, my parents asked him all kinds of questions which he answered really well! They were very impressed and it really made the relationship between Fiance and my parents a lot stronger.
Fiance and my dad sometimes hang out now and they can feel comfortable doing things with out my mom or I around, its really neat and I think its because he had that special moment with them! Im so happy he did it 🙂
You should let him know that your dad would really appriciate it (when the time comes), and if he is not comfortable talking with just your dad, tell him to do it with both of your parents so that they can both be included in that speical moment!
Post # 10
I completely understand where you are coming from on the property idea, but when my Fiance asked my parents (without telling me, but I guessed), he did it more as a “I AM going to marry your daughter” rather than a “May I marry your daughter?”. I felt it was nice he had told my parents.
If you don’t want your SO to tell your dad, you have to let him know how you feel. Times have changed and it is certainly not a requirement to have a blessing anymore.
Post # 11
I’m kind of with you on that one. I can see how some people think it as more of a “blessing” but to me, if you have decided to get married, that is an adult decision between two people that should not involve their parents. I would let your DAD know not to expect your fiance to ask him, not the other way around!
Your parents can easily give their blessing once the both of you announce that you are engaged!
Post # 12
@CrazyCoffeeGeek: +1 I agree with this.
OP: If asking your dad feels wrong to you and your Fiance, then just tell you dad not to expect. He may feel disappointed, but it’s your life and your engagement, so you should do it the way you want. Asking your dad, especially when it’s not important to you, is a lot of pressure to put on your Fiance.
Post # 13
Fiance didn’t ask, which made calling them really awkward because they were completely caught off guard. (I don’t know why, we had been together for 4 years.) But Fiance didn’t feel the need to ask, and honestly I think it was better for me to listen to them being shocked than for him to have to listen to it. I would hate for my dad to have tried to talk him out of it or into delaying it (idk if that would have happened but I guess it could have).
Post # 14
My opinion would be to talk to your SO about this and ask him to ask your father. Even if they have a bad relationship, your father knows you’re with this man so he knows that if someone will be asking him soon it will be said man. Considering that, if he still wants to be asked he’s likely going to say “Yes of course” but he may be using this to see if your SO will have the “courage” or “respect” to ask him, and if he does ask this will as you said only improve their relationship.
As far as being an adult being grown and not needing their permission, while I agree with this, it makes me wonder why you would even ask him then if he wanted to be asked. If you never had the intention of your SO asking your father, what would the point of bringing it up with your father be other than causing confusion?
I think the idea behind getting the fathers permission isn’t so much as getting him to say it’s ok for you to marry the man, but it’s more of showing your father respect and your SO going to your father and letting your father know that you will be taken care of. You are your fathers daughter, and ever man who has a daughter hopes that the man she intends to marry will have the courage to ask him for her hand in marriage. It says a lot about a man if he can overcome the obstacles and humble himself to ask such a question that’s not necessary. In new ages, you can marry whomever you want with or without parental consent as long as you are of age, so it’s not as much the permission as it is just the father wanting you feel a little more involved when his daughter is departing on her own adventures.
As a mother you dream of your daughters wedding day, to watch her walk down the isle and into the arms of a man whom you know will take good care of her. You dream of the mother duties involved in the wedding, it’s much the same from the fathers eyes, just in different aspects of the wedding.
Post # 15
@Creiddylad: I’m with you. It might be nice for my SO to announce his intentions to my closest family ahead of time, but the actual *asking* makes me feel a little funny. That might be a nice compromise – your family still feels involved and informed, but you can avoid the whole permission part.
Post # 16
It was very important to me that my father be asked permission, and Fiance knew this. no, I’m not his property, I’ve basically been on my own since 18 supporting myself, I have a career and my whole life several states away. But he’s my dad, and I will always be his daughter. It is important to me to have his blessing on my marriage and to like the man I am marrying. I also agree it’s a respect thing for the father, to show him that he values the bride’s family and their opinions.