If you ask a group of women about their thoughts on a Valentine's Day proposal, you're likely to see some eye rolling and hear some groans. But while some think popping the question on February 14th is cliché, there's a group of people who understand that it is in fact a very special day: those who actually got engaged on Valentine's Day.
We spoke to five women who said yes on Valentine's Day about what they really think of Valentine's Day proposals and what advice they would give to those planning to ask "Will you marry me?" on V-day.
The Bride: Nina Singh, Atlanta, GA
What She Thought Before the Proposal: "I always kind of thought it was cheesy to do them on Valentine's Day."
Proposal Story: "Kiran and I started dating two days after Valentine's Day in 2008. We got engaged on Valentine's Day 2010. That morning, I woke up and Kiran said, ‘Let's go to brunch, get dressed.' I went to my closet and thought, 'Oh my gosh I am getting engaged today, I need the perfect outfit.' It was this out-of-the-blue feeling I had not had ever before but I could just feel it. We were walking around St. Augustine, a very quaint old city, and he told me we were going to picnic on a field that overlooked the ocean on one side and an old historic castle on the other side. He laid down a blanket and pulled out a bunch of picnic items. Before I knew it, he was on one knee, saying some really sweet stuff, and then he asked me to be his wife. I said yes, of course, but I was so overwhelmed that I don't even know what else happened!"
What She Thinks Now: "Any day someone proposes is awesome, Valentine's or not. It's a very special day for us; it probably would not be if it was just Valentine's Day."
Her Expert V-Day Proposal Tips: "If you are planning [to propose on] Valentine's Day, it may take the surprise element out of it. Know she may expect it."
The Bride: Andrea K., Alexandria, VA
What She Thought Before the Proposal: "I was never really a fan because I felt like it put too much pressure on the couple to make it special."
Proposal Story: "I was working on my Master's degree and we [didn't have a lot of money] at the time. We had just gone out to dinner a lot, so I didn't want to do anything for Valentine's Day. Well, he talked me into it, but before we left for Olive Garden—did I mention we were college students still?—he gave me my Valentine's Day card with a book of everything he wanted to say but was afraid he wouldn't because he was too nervous. Next thing I realize, he is on one knee asking me. Neither of us really remember me saying yes."
What She Thinks Now: "I admit I'm still not a huge fan of it."
Her Expert V-Day Proposal Tips: "Be authentic. If being showy and glamorous is your thing, go for it, but if it's not, don't do it."
The Bride: Tamara Barak Aparton, Oakland, CA
What She Thought Before the Proposal: "I hadn't thought specifically about Valentine's Day proposals, but it was always a holiday where I hoped something cool and romantic would happen."
Proposal Story: "On Valentine's Day 2007, my then-boyfriend and I were getting ready to go out, and he left to walk our retired racing greyhound, Nigel. When they returned, Nigel had a ring box dangling from his collar along with a construction paper heart that read, 'Please Marry Daddy.' My boyfriend got down on one knee in front of our fireplace and asked me to marry him. I was covering my face and screaming 'Oh my god, oh my god!" I was also wearing a shirt but no pants, like Porky Pig. We were married 10 months later and are still married."
What She Thinks Now: "I don't think it takes a holiday to make a proposal special, but for me it added an additional layer of sweetness to the whole thing."
Her Expert V-Day Proposal Tips: "Make sure your partner saying 'yes' is a sure thing. Otherwise you've just ruined a perfectly good holiday for the rest of your life."
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The Bride: Carmen S., Baltimore, MD
What She Thought Before the Proposal: "Honestly, before my proposal, I thought it seemed kind of hokey. But in my experience, it said a lot about my husband. He's really traditionally romantic in a lot of ways and it just kind of fit for him."
Proposal Story: "My husband proposed on Valentine's Day 2011. We were on a trip to visit his family in Virginia, and he told me he was going to take me out to dinner for Valentine's Day. He said mother wanted us to stop by her house before we went to dinner to get pictures. I am a really shy person and had hinted (subtly, I thought—in reality it was not so subtle) that I really didn't want to get engaged in public, so I was kind of nervous that the night was gearing up towards a fancy dinner. When we got to his mother's house, we both walked in and the house was seemingly empty. The table was set with dinner, candles, and flowers. He said that he planned a nice dinner just for us at the empty house as a surprise since he knew I didn't really want to go anywhere. I was so nervous that I went to the bathroom for a quick breather. When I finally came out, he was kind of pacing, and from there it's a little bit blurry, but somehow we wound up with him on his knee saying all kinds of really lovely stuff. I said yes, of course, and there was some tearing up, though my husband would never admit that."
What She Thinks Now: "My thoughts on Valentine's Day proposals remain kind of the same as all proposals—do it because the time is right and because it means something to you."
Her Expert V-Day Proposal Tips: "Despite the holiday and the pressure to present a certain picture on social media, do what's right for you as a couple. Keep it true to the spirit of your relationship."