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Need some feedback on proposal dilemma

Discussion in 'Proposal Ideas' started by jcl49er, Jul 10, 2007.

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  1. jcl49er
    Rough_Rock

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    by jcl49er » Jul 10, 2007
    Some background info that may help some of you with offering up some advice:

    My girlfriend is 28 and the middle child of three female siblings. She was born on Christmas Day in upper Michigan where she lived through college and then moved to the south for work-related purposes. While in college (or shortly after), her mother lost her battle with liver cancer. It was a really hard loss for the the sisters because they were all super close to their mother. It''s still hard on them to this day when holidays roll around. Her mother was born the very small town of Christmas, MI. Yep, it exists! My GF doesn''t get to go visit home, where her father still lives in the same home (not in Christmas, MI), very often. However, she loves it up there and is incredibly excited to go back over Labor Day weekend. I will be going with her to finally visit her roots.

    Now, what I considered doing is proposing to her in Christmas, MI. The town her mother was born in and of importance because my GF was born on Christmas Day. I thought it would be a special location for her and one she would associate with her mother. However, when talking about places she wanted me to visit when we go, she spoke of her mother''s hometown. But she told me it''s a pretty depressing place. Her mother grew up really poor and my GF told me that there are still a couple dilapidated trailers there that her mother''s sister (and some other relative) lived in.

    So, now I''m almost wondering if this is a good idea. On one hand, I feel like it would be very sentimental to propose there and could possibly turn a depressing impression into a joyous one. But then on the other hand, I feel like that it could be a bad move if my GF only associates depression, poverty, etc. with that place. I want the proposal to be really special but the environment is a critical part of that. What do you think, especially you ladies? Would you be flattered or is this a scenario you wouldn''t care for?

    My backup plan is to propose in the mountains of NC, where my GF and I have started going to every December for a joint birthday (me on Dec. 3rd/her on the 25th) trip. That would be really special too and of course, the environment would be great. The downside is that I would have to wait until the first weekend in December. That may be hard to do because I already have the stone, am in the process of getting the setting and I''m really anxious to propose. That''s a long time to wait!! [​IMG]

    The only other option is to just propose somewhere else while we''re visiting her old stomping grounds in Michigan but I have no clue where, when, how, etc.

    I''d love some feedback. Thanks so much!! [​IMG]
     
  2. aprilcait
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by aprilcait » Jul 10, 2007
    I would suggest not proposing in her mother''s birthplace. I think you are right in questioning how your future fiancee will regard the area.

    I would suggest proposing in her hometown, perhaps at a place there that means a lot to her. Get her talking about her hometown and prompt her into mentioning places that she frequented/meant a lot to her (it shouldn''t take too much prying since she''s so excited). I think she might really like that. Maybe you could even plan to have some of her immediate family meet you after the proposal for dinner to make the day even more special. Just a thought.

    Best of luck!!! [​IMG]
     
  3. treysar
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by treysar » Jul 11, 2007
    You are sweet and thoughtful to consider her Mother. It nearly has me in tears! I’m not sure how you feel about this – but if you do choose to propose elsewhere, maybe you could find out where the cemetary is and go there on your own, and “ask permission” from her Mom at the cemetary. That would be really thoughtful.
     
  4. Independent Gal
    Ideal_Rock

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    by Independent Gal » Jul 11, 2007
    I''m going to offer a different perspective.

    First of all, kudos to you for being so thoughtful, but I agree with the others that it might be a downer to propose in Christmas, MI.

    If you''re going to be seeing a lot of her friends and family while up there, she''d probably prefer to be engaged BEFORE you leave so that she can announce it in person to the people she loves... maybe even show off her bling! So, why not propose just before you leave on the trip in a place that''s special to YOU TWO together. After all, the proposal is about her and your transition into a family of your own, so the symbolism of doing it where she''s from might be lesss....errr... appropriate? then doing it somewhere she associates with where she is in her life with you now. If you see what I mean?
     
  5. jcl49er
    Rough_Rock

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    by jcl49er » Jul 12, 2007
    Yes, I see what you mean and I appreciate the feedback from everyone. Another hiccup is that I had been planning for months to propose to her in MI. Another idea I had was to talk to her father so I could find out where he proposed to my GF''s mother. And then kind of recreate the moment. However, on a recent trip up there, her oldest sister was proposed to by her boyfriend. No one saw it coming and now I feel that if I propose up there when we go, it will be redundant, even though I had the idea well before her sister got engaged.

    So, I''d like to be a little more original. And I''m just not sure how I feel about traveling up there with a ring, completely unfamiliar with the environment I''d be proposing in. With that in mind, I may give some thought to proposing prior to our trip. I just don''t really know where/how to pull it off. I don''t want it to be too orchestrated but yet, I want it to be special. The first place we met in person isn''t really somewhere I''d want to propose so that''s not really an option. We''re only a couple hours from the mountains but with it being summer (and HOT here in the southeast), she''d know something was up if I suggested a trip up there for the weekend.

    It''s a shame December is so far off because our joint-birthday trip would be ideal but I just don''t think I can wait that long. I''m already going crazy in anticipation!
     
  6. havernell
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by havernell » Jul 12, 2007
    Just a point of clarification- have you met your girlfriend''s Dad and sisters before, or will this trip to MI be the first time you are meeting them?

    Just personally, I would feel uncomfortable getting engaged to someone my family hadn''t met yet (but that''s just me). So, if this is the case for you, I wouldn''t propose before you go to MI. However, if you know the fam already, I see no problem in proposing before you go (and agree she''d be excited to share the news with everyone at home).

    Also, with the sister getting engaged- that''s a shame that he beat you to your idea and I see how you doing the same would look kind of unoriginal.

    Would the moutains in the summer really be that crazy of an idea (I mean, I assume people do vacation in the mountains in the summer, so its not like it would be an immediate red flag)? Can you play it like you had a tough week at work some week and just want to "get away for the weekend" and tell you gf that you booked a place in the moutains for you two? Make it sound like its about you, not her?

    Good luck coming up with your wonderful proposal plan!
     
  7. jcl49er
    Rough_Rock

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    by jcl49er » Jul 12, 2007
    I''ve never been to her hometown but I''ve met her dad a few times when he has come down to visit here in NC. I actually spent a good deal of time with him during the Christmas holidays. And I have been around her younger sister a good bit and around the oldest over the holidays as well. So I definitely feel comfortable proposing prior to the trip up there.

    I''ve been under a good bit of stress lately (work related) and have been pretty bummed out. So a weekend getaway probably wouldn''t send up a huge red flag but she may still think something is going on. Especially if we pulled up at some quaint Inn or B&B, she''d know right away. Finances are not so great right now either as I''m trying to start a new career so doing anything of out of the norm, expense-wise, may tip her off as well.

    The more I think about it, the more I''d like to propose before our trip though. Her dad, youngest sister (her boyfriend) and other family members will all be up there. So it would be nice if she could share the news in person.
     
  8. havernell
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by havernell » Jul 12, 2007
    Well, even if you pull into a B&B and that signals to her a proposal may be coming coming, that doesn''t mean it''s any less of a surprise or any less sweet. The timing (that it is happening that weekend and not some other weekend) was still a surprise to her and how/where exactly you do it once you are at the B&B/ in the mountains will still be a surprise. So I wouldn''t worry that it may not be *totally* out of the blue. Most proposals aren''t.

    Plus, if her sister just got engaged on a trip back to MI, your girlfriend may be wondering if you''ll also propose during your tirp to MI, so that location/time may not be as big of a surprise as you think to her anyway...

    I know choosing the right proposal time/place is a tough decision, but just realize that she''s going to love anything you plan (because it''s clear you are putting a lot of thought into it). Best of luck with it!
     
  9. surfgirl
    Ideal_Rock

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    by surfgirl » Jul 16, 2007
    You dont need to spend alot of money to propose in a meaningful way. You can take a drive into the countryside, go for a walk somewhere you both love. Do a picnic. Sometimes I think we women expect so much from a proposal. I got mine while wearing my pyjamas and before I had my morning coffee. It wasn''t anything anyone would make a movie over but it was MY proposal so it was great.
     
  10. lexi
    Rough_Rock

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    by lexi » Jul 16, 2007
    where at in michigan did she grow up? there are some extremely beautiful places up there (especially if it is near one of the lakes) that would be a great environment to propose in. maybe even think about taking a side day trip (if time allows) to go to mackinac or traverse city or find a secluded beach (there are a TON of them) - you can get creative (michigan.org wouldn''t be a bad site to check out). If your girlfriend is really excited about the trip then it sounds like the perfect time - don''t let the idea of OTHER people thinking it isn''t original enough stop you, because i can pretty much guarantee you that the last thing your girlfriend will think when she sees the ring is "how redundant". and on behalf of all future fiances out there, don''t make her wait until december!
     
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