Just curious – Asking permission/talking to parents before proposing

posted 8 months ago in Proposals
Post # 2
7381 posts
Busy Beekeeper

Well , I see no necessity for it at all, if it were both set of parents then maybe ,but it ‘s always the girls father/parents being asked.  Whether  or not their answer would make any difference is immaterial , the inference is still guardianship/ownership change.  

If two adults are getting engaged I think they are the only two  in the equation.  Nice to contact parents immediately afterwards though. 

Post # 3
672 posts
Busy bee

I actually told him not to ask.  I’m a very grown adult with my own kid so I think it’d be ridiculous.  Although even if I wasn’t, I’d feel the same. In general I find it outdated and irrelevant. If someone wants to give a heads up to the bride’s parents that they’re proposing, that’s fine of course, but asking – nope. 

Post # 4
1181 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2018

Its one of those things that give people credit for things they don’t do anymore. Back when women were dependents it made sense to go to her father because if she married a f up then he would in theory be on the hook for her expenses and now she was “unmarriageable.” Since women are now expected to have jobs and pay their own bills, there is no one to ask about their opinion on the matter. In most cases if the father was asked he is being asked about something that hasn’t had anything to do with him in over a decade. 

Its like when parents go on about how its tradition to let them make decisions about the wedding, but unlike tradition they aren’t paying for it. You can’t have it both ways. 

Post # 5
3879 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: April 2017

If the woman likes the tradition, that’s cool, but I can see why a lot of people find it outdated or even offensive. My now-husband didn’t ask. I think he actually tried but couldn’t get the phone number right (my dad lives overseas). I mean, my husband had only even met my dad a few times so it would have been a kind of odd phone call. I think he only tried because he wasn’t sure if I would expect it of him. 

I did tell my parents together in a conference call before telling anyone else, though. 

Post # 6
1239 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2018

We are very traditional so this had to happen. My husband more like told my dad what was happening though πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

Post # 7
399 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2018

My husband took a day off and drove all the way to my parents place. About 250km. And then back home again. For most Europeans that’s a lot of driving. From our place  500 km means also Paris, München, Amerstam, Basel, Brussels and so on.

I didn’t know he planned on doing that and neither did my parents. But they where so touched. My dad had tears in his eyes and my mum flat out cried. They found his gesture to die for. He never asked for their permission but for their blessing. 

I also loved that he did that. I found it sweet and considerate. After all my parents entrusted him their only daughter. – not that they had any say but it made them love him even more. 

After the official proposal my mum called like everyone and told them how he came and asked them. She was so proud. 

And I think exactly that: it’s a gesture. It’s symbolism.  Like wearing white. Or how many people are actually Virginis on their wedding day πŸ˜‰ 

Post # 9
228 posts
Helper bee

I have a real bee in my bonnet about this one. The roots of this tradition are horribly misogynistic and I can’t get over that, and wish society was a little more critical before repeating these things. Even if it’s just ‘symbolical’ and asking for a blessing, rather than permission – for me, that’s splitting hairs, and the meaning is the same.

Surely the point of marriage is that you form a new unit with your partner and they should come first – why go and speak to the parents beforehand, especially if the outcome has no bearing on anything? It just doesn’t make sense to me, and the ‘respect’ argument makes me a feel a bit queasy, and isn’t a proper justification to do anything. To me, it goes hand in hand with the whole ‘waiting/surprise proposal/man making all the decisions about timelines’ thing, and the female partner not really taking an active role in their own future.

Soapbox rant over, but there are my feelings. I understand that most of these arguments can and also do apply to the institution of marriage, but I feel like marriage provide multiple benefits (hence why I’m willing to overlook elements of its history), but I don’t really see any benefit from keeping this tradition hanging around.

So no, no parents were ‘asked’, any partner that would do so really doesn’t know me well enough to marry me, and my father (or both parents) would be completely perplexed if this happened. 

Post # 10
2043 posts
Buzzing bee

My take on the matter is that no one (other than my fiancée) has the right to know about my engagement before I do.  

Post # 11
189 posts
Blushing bee

My fiance thought it was really odd that anybody would know about our engagement before I did or that it was anyone’s decision apart from mine, so he didn’t ask my dad’s/parents’ permission. We hadn’t talked about it and initially I felt slightly mixed as I am very close to my parents. However, my fiance and I are both feminists, and when I actually stopped to think about it I thougth he was 100% right: it would have been so odd for my dad to know before I did, or to suggest my parents – but not his parents – needed to be involved! Looking at these traditions from the perspective of someone who hasn’t heard of them before (my Fiance is from a different country where this isn’t done) can be really illuminating! 
We flew out to tell my parents in person and it was so exciting breaking the news, so I’m extra glad they didn’t know in advance!

Post # 12
198 posts
Blushing bee

misslucy :  this is how I feel.  My parents previously told me that they think the tradition is dumb because it’s  my life, but my bf also asked me if he should give them a heads-up and I said no to that, too.  It’s my life (and I’ve been waiting long enough!), I want to know first.

Post # 13
10860 posts
Sugar Beekeeper

My husband did not ask for permission. I’m not property. We did tell both families immediately and celebrated with them the next day. 

Post # 14
2413 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

I explicitly told Darling Husband not to ask or speak to my parents beforehand. Although I gave my own parents the heads up that we were ring shopping. 

Post # 15
69 posts
Worker bee

My Fiance didnt ask my dad, didnt even talk to my dad about us getting married, and thats exactly how i wanted it. 

I love both my parents dont get me wrong, but they dont own me, and if theres “permission” to be given, its coming from me not them. 

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