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Ask for Permission – The Traditional Touch

It’s one of the oldest rules in the book. Add a traditional touch to your proposal by asking for permission.

When deciding to propose, there’s a few rules that if broken can be a major deal breaker for women. For the perfect proposal, you will need a ring and you will need to drop to one knee. But first, we suggest asking your girlfriend’s father for permission. Asking a father for his daughter’s hand in marriage is a key part of a proposal, and should not be overlooked.


We asked some women what they thought about the chance of their boyfriend NOT asking for permission before popping the question:

“I couldn’t image my boyfriend not asking my parents for permission. I need to know that they’re okay with who I’ve decided to spend the rest of my life with — after all, they are my parents! They know me the best! I would feel uncomfortable committing to someone knowing that I don’t have my parents 100% support.” — anonymous

Asking for permission is one of the oldest proposal traditions, but its prominence has been fading from modern society. Many men and women believe that the tradition has its roots in sexism, and therefore some men have started to forgo the practice.

We here at Visions believe asking for permission is a sign of respect. It shows that you care about your girlfriend’s family and want them involved in your future life together. After all, they will be your in-laws! Even if you have been dating for years and marriage has been on the horizon for a while, clearly stating your intentions to propose is the best way to both give and gain respect. Asking for permission eases any tensions and helps start this new chapter of your life on a positive note. Dropping to one knee knowing you have her parents’ support also helps ease any nerves you might have about proposing!

Since there’s a wide variety of family structures in today’s society, you may decide to seek permission from someone other than your beloved’s father — a mother, stepfather, grandfather, or even a sibling. Thinking of the tradition as more of a family affair helps add a modern twist on the practice, and aids in erasing any hints of sexism.

If you’re still wary about this tradition, think of it more as getting the chance to show your girlfriend’s parents your love for her. Asking for permission lets you have an honest talk with your beloved’s parents about the future. You can let them know how much you love their daughter and gain their ultimate approval and respect for you. They’ll appreciate the time you took to talk to them! Asking for permission also lets you know if they want to be in on the proposal, helping you pop the question.

Get on the right foot with your future in-laws. Make sure to ask for permission before dropping to one knee.

Want to plan the ultimate proposal? Contact Visions, Chicago’s luxury proposal planner!

About Jenée Strickland

Visions Event Studio specializes in luxury events, including proposals and couture weddings. Jenée Strickland, owner, and lead visionnaire, has been an integral part of hundreds of weddings and proposals. Her job is a privilege; her work is a passion.

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