How long should you wait before proposing?
If you’re in a relationship and think a proposal might be on the cards in the future – or if you’re in a new relationship and are really keen for things to get serious – you might wonder how long the suitable time is to wait before getting engaged. But popping the question is serious – and the balance between ‘not too soon’ and ‘not too late’ is hard to get right. Here, we break down some things to consider before getting engaged.
Is there a right time to propose?
There is no ‘perfect’ amount of time to wait before proposing, because it’s subjective from couple to couple. For you and your fiancée to be, you might just ‘know’, and maybe 6 months is the perfect time to propose. For others, it might be more like 6 years. It’s all down to you, and what feels right for your circumstances. However, there are some things we would recommend taking into consideration, when thinking about ‘the right time’.
When should you not propose?
When you’re experiencing financial difficulty: If you’re experiencing financial stress or are working towards a shared goal (such as buying a house), your partner may not be best pleased if you spend a large chunk of savings on a ring. Perhaps communicate with them whether they’d rather you wait to pop the question, or to propose with an ‘interim’ ring, that can be replaced at a later date.
When you’re expecting a child: This varies from couple to couple, but some people would prefer not to be proposed to when they’re expecting a child. The pregnancy might not have them feeling their best, or they might want to wait so that they can have a drink to celebrate! Again, communication is key.
Consider the date you’re planning to propose on: Some people would love to be proposed to, on a significant date, such as Christmas or their birthday. However, to some, this might ruin their moment – or, worse still, if the engagement doesn’t work out, it might put a negative stain on the day forever. So, if you’re thinking about proposing soon because a big holiday is coming up, maybe take a step back, and think about whether it’s a good idea.
If the topic hasn’t come up yet: If the topic of engagement and marriage hasn’t come up yet in your relationship at all, it might not be the right time. Most people who propose to their loved one have a good idea that they’ll get a ‘yes!’ before popping the question. If the topic is yet to come up in your relationship, your partner may think it’s too early.
What should you consider before proposing?
Do you see yourself with this person forever? It might seem obvious but ask yourself this before popping the question – a marriage is a big commitment.
Are your values aligned? If you’re planning on spending your futures together, do you know what that will look like? For example, if one person really wants children but the other doesn’t, or one partner wants to move to another country whereas the other wants to stay put, these are things that can put strain on a relationship in future. Things like moving house and children might not seem like pressing issues at the moment, but it’s important to know whether your values and expectations align before committing.
Have you gone through hardships together? If your relationship is going great and you want to take things to the next level, it’s important to consider whether it’ll last through testing times, as well as the good times. Life isn’t always perfect, so think about hard times you’ve been through, and how you dealt with problems together.
Overall, there is no ‘perfect’ time to propose – some couples propose early into the relationship and end up staying together forever, some ‘wait it out’ to make sure and it doesn’t work out – it’s all unique to you and your partner. The main thing – though – is to make sure you have open and honest communication with your partner, about your expectations, values and beliefs.
Looking for the perfect ring?
Think it’s time to ask the question, but haven’t found the ring yet? Check out our beautiful selection of engagement rings here, for inspiration.