Real Men Share: The Moment I Knew I Was Ready to Get Married

Grooms, Relationships
Groom Writing Vows

Photo: Kate Holstein

Was it love at first sight? A certain milestone or a special experience? Ten married men reflect on the moment they just knew they had found The One.

I Never Wanted Our Vacation to End
"When I graduated law school, my girlfriend found a great deal on a European cruise to celebrate. Drinking pitchers of sangria in Spain and exploring the countryside made me realize for sure that I didn't want the adventure to ever end. We celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary minus our two kids in Mexico recently." —Matt, 40

She Was Ready to Buy Her Own Place
"My girlfriend told me she was going to move out of her parents' house and buy her own condo. It hit me that I wanted her first home to be our home." —Ed, 38

When She Wanted More Than a Dog
"I kept asking my girlfriend if we could get a dog, but she said, 'Ring first, then a dog.' Hearing her say that was a win-win: I knew she wanted a dog, but I really knew she wanted to settle down with me. I knew I felt the same way." —Chris, 38

She Helped Out During a Tragedy
"She brought over a lasagna when my great-uncle--whom she never even met--died and babysat my young nieces during the funeral." —Kevin, 29

I Made a Promise to Her Grandfather
"Her grandfather was really sick, and we'd been dating only a few months. She said it would mean the world to her if I met him. We went to the hospital, and her grandpa told me to take care of her. I kept that promise." —Shawn, 26

See More: Signs You're in a Healthy Relationship

She Visited My Mom in Rehab
"She came with me to visit my mom in rehab. It was really hard for me to tell her that my mom was an alcoholic--after all the time they'd spent together just doing normal things, I thought she'd be mad I was lying to her--but she was really empathetic and didn't judge at all." —Tim, 31

Watching Her as a Bridesmaid
"I knew I wanted to marry her when I saw her walking down the aisle at her brother's wedding. She was a bridesmaid, but the way she held the flowers and smiled at me in the pew up ahead made me imagine the next time she'd be walking down the isle, smiling at me." —Anthony, 33

I Fell In Love With Her Family
"Her big Italian family invited me over to make sauce for the season. She was barefoot in the grass, peeling tomatoes at the picnic table. The sun kept catching the line of jars, gleaming. Her entire family and young cousins were all there. I knew I wanted her and that family life." —Don, 36

She Took Off Work to Watch My Dog
"I couldn't take off work, but she had a few vacation days left. She used them up to babysit my dog after it was spayed." —Jeff, 28

When I Saw Her Hold a Baby
"We visited our best friends in the hospital after their baby was born. Seeing her hold the baby and pace around to stop her crying was a game changer." —Michael, 27

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