The Internet and social media have changed the way we do business. But should it change the way people propose marriage? From tweeting "Will You Marry Me", to enlisting Groupon to help put together a marriage proposal coupon, to the latest, "crowdsourcing" on the internet to "Help Me convince Katie to Say Yes." Has it all gone too far? I think so.
In my opinion, proposing on the Internet is the equivalent of a virtual Jumbo-tron and we all know how devastating that can be. Although my profession as a Proposal Planner is sometimes criticized for taking the romance out of proposals, a position I vehemently disagree with, we always create personalized and sentimental proposals and the Internet just doesn't fit the bill.
Here is why:
It is not personal
The single most important piece of advice I can give to any client when they are planning their proposal is to make it personal. Your proposal should be relevant to your relationship and it should include sentimental things that are meaningful to you both, such as where you met or shared your first kiss. Unless the Internet played a significant role in your relationship, I can't see the connection and she probably won't either.
It doesn't convey emotion
You may think that by proposing on the Internet you are letting the whole world know how much you love her. But do you really care if the whole world knows or do you care if she knows? Words can stir up great emotion, I am not denying that. But words can never take the place of an in-person, face-to-face connection. I have watched many men express their love to their girlfriends at that moment right before they drop to their knee, and that cannot be conveyed through writing on a computer screen.
She can't accept right away
Just as words can't convey the emotion from a man right before he proposes, there is nothing like the woman getting lost in the moment as he professes his love for her, she jumps into his arms and screams "YES!" You rob her of that once in a life time feeling by proposing over the Internet.
Another downside to proposing on the Internet is the amount of pressure you put on the person. I mean, when the whole world is watching, she almost feels like she has to say yes. That really isn't fair. Which leads me to my next point...
It could go viral
If she says no, you can pretty much guarantee that it is going to go viral and you are going to look like the biggest chump on earth. Unfortunately, even if she says yes and it goes viral, this can be a negative experience as well. Because of the anonymity of comment posting, your proposal could be the target of hundreds of naysayers making negative comments about nearly everything you can think of. "Why did he wear that? What a loser to propose that way? She's fat," etc. Trust me, I have seen it all.
I am all about being innovative, thinking outside of the box, and keeping up with the times. But I do not think that proposing on the Internet is appropriate. It really does take away from the intimacy of a proposal. Even with wild and crazy proposals, such as flash mobs, there is some element of tradition. After the terrible dance routine the guy comes up to the girl, professes his love, and gets down on one knee. That is the way it should stay.
Michele is a Romance Expert, who specializes in Proposal Planning and Romantic Date Coordination. She owns The Heart Bandits and has been featured in the NY Times, Globe & Mail, Daily Mail, Fox News, Houston Chronicle, and Orange County Register. Contact The Heart Bandits to have them plan your romantic date or marriage proposal. For more information about The Heart Bandits, visit www.theheartbandits.com