"I had made it clear to my longtime boyfriend that I never wanted to get married. I'd seen too many not work out. I'd also made it clear I'd be his forever and loved living with him but didn't see the point of the piece of paper. Tim really wanted to get married but didn't want to pressure me. One morning I woke up, looked at his dear face, and thought, 'What am I afraid of?' That night when he got home, there were candles lit and romantic music playing. I had cooked his favorite dinner and was wearing Victoria's Secret. He said jokingly, 'Did you do something I'm going to be angry about?' I said, 'I hope not. I'm asking you if I can make an honest man out of you!'" —Lesley
"Sre and I had been together for three years when I popped the question on Christmas morning. We were sitting in my childhood bedroom, with my parents waiting for us to come to breakfast. I gave him a vintage Rolex watch because every time I asked him if he wanted to 'put a ring on it,' he responded with 'Why don't you put a Rolex on it?' So I did, and Sre said yes! I know many people deep down believe that if a women has to propose, it means that the man isn't committed, but that isn't our story. We had a good life and a good partnership, but we both knew Sre's parents in India were going to be very upset about our marriage. I'm white and probably a good bit older than who they would have chosen for his arranged marriage. So our relationship plateaued because neither one of us was ready to take that leap and face the struggle. I proposed because it was time for us to move forward. I grabbed his hand and told him that I couldn't see the rest of my life without him, no matter the consequences. It wasn't like the movies. You don't just profess your love and tell your unsupportive parents to go to hell. The coming year was an emotional roller coaster that impacted our lives in very dramatic ways. His parents grieved, and we went through that process with them. Our wedding day, on October 8, 2016, made it all worth it. It was a joyous occasion with many of Sre's family in attendance. His parents were not able to come, but we will be going to India soon for a Hindu ceremony." —Casie
"I proposed because I didn't want to be the girl giving the ultimatum. We'd been together three years. Either he was ready or he wasn't. So one night we were at the beach watching a sunset, sipping Chablis, and I said, 'I want to marry you and I hope you feel the same way.' After the initial shock—he sure wasn't expecting it!—he said, 'That you were able to take the initiative and do something I was afraid to do shows me how strong and special you are and how lucky I will be to share my life with you.' I said, 'So I guess that's a yes?' That was six years ago last December, and marriage has been wonderful!" —Lori
"I proposed to my husband. We had discussed it previously and decided we would both have the opportunity to ask and whoever got the opportunity to ask first would! We had this really amazing date, and I just got overwhelmed and proposed and he said yes and we exchanged engagement rings. It's really not weird or a trend to us. It just happened how it felt the most natural to us. Isn't that what a relationship should be?" —Meghan
"I made my proposal into a treasure hunt, leaving notes and clues in places that had relevance to the history of our romance. For example, the bartender at the place we had our first date had one of the notes ready for Greg. My last note for Greg—on his pillow—asked him to be my husband. It was daring, romantic, and special and a story we never tire of telling." —Amy
"At a Mets game on the billboard, it said, 'Tom, Jan wants to know if you will marry her,' then the cameras came to us. You can't do this sort of thing unless you know the person will say yes!" —Jan
Sherry Amatenstein, LCSW, is a New York City-based marriage therapist and author.