Parent Permission: Asking for a blessing for your wedding

by epi on October 24, 2012

Q: What are the rules of common courtesy in terms of asking for parents’ blessing/permission to marry? Do you need to be in person to ask both your own parents and your significant other parents?

A: Historically, if the marriage had not been arranged by the two families in the first place, it was up to the groom to ask the woman’s father for permission to propose.  Today, in most cultures, things are very different.  The bride and groom usually make the decision to marry.  Then they inform their families, but not necessarily to ask for their permission or blessing.  While it is a nice gesture if both the bride- and groom-to-be are present when sharing the news, there is no “rule” that states they both should be present.

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{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Joanna October 24, 2012 at 3:03 pm

Huh? “Do you need to be in person”? What is this person planning, to ask via text message?


Jerry October 24, 2012 at 4:58 pm

Before the text message there was an ancient technology called the telephone. I suppose one could use that.

(In all seriousness, though, what’s up with the texting fad? We have email. Why text? And why are people surprised when I tell them that I refuse to text and that I’ve told my phone company to block all texts?)


Just Laura October 24, 2012 at 5:28 pm

Why text?

Well, I can’t pick up a phone and call my deaf students, friends and coworkers…

In all seriousness (couldn’t resist), I prefer texting as a quick means of communication. “Want to grab lunch?” “Still coming tonight?” I don’t want to call someone’s cell, hope I’m catching him/her at a convenient time, leave a voice mail if not, and then wait for the return call for something so simple. I feel texting is inappropriate for long conversations, but for quick inquiries, it is perfect for me.


Jerry October 24, 2012 at 6:22 pm

But why not email, which is free?


Just Laura October 24, 2012 at 8:05 pm

Not everyone has a smart phone.

Joanna October 25, 2012 at 9:32 am

I don’t have a smart phone either. And I refuse to text (I’ve actually had it blocked on my phone, because I don’t want to have to pay for all the incoming texts I have no control over.) Somehow, I manage to keep in touch with everyone that I need to, no problem.

(And for the record, I’m 32. I’m the only person I know like this, but that’s just fine with me. I feel much more peaceful keeping my technology limited.)

V.T. Reynolds. October 24, 2012 at 11:55 pm

How am I to respond to a colleague who continues to invite me to her “buy my stuff” parties? I have never been a fan of these events (Tupperware, Gourmet Chef, Mary Kay, candles, Amark, etc.), in which one is basically forced to buy stuff that one does not need, and the guests are rarely provided adult refreshments of any type to compensate for their time and money spent. My colleague continues to request my presence at such events (luckily, I have been otherwise obligated), but into the future, how can I avoid committing to these events in an honest way without being ostracized by her or other women? The men, lucky for them, are rarely invited to such events, and if they openly decline for lack of interest, they are not socially punished for doing so. How do I become a man in the eyes of these women?


Joanna October 25, 2012 at 9:33 am

Say with a friendly laugh, “Sorry, that’s just not my thing!” And then leave the subject alone. If that doesn’t do it, then they are just plain obnoxious.


Jerry October 25, 2012 at 10:55 am

I had a vendor try to sell me products that I didn’t need. This particular vendor sold custom suits and designer clothes. It started getting annoying — every few days, “Are you ready for a [suit, pair of jeans, shirts]?” Finally, I had enough. I started pitching him on my business offerings. Every time he would contact me about one of his products, I would start talking about my own. Haven’t heard from him since.

So with respect to your situation, tell your colleague “I’m not particularly interested in [Mary Kay], but my [son, nephew, cousin] is fundraising for a raffle to benefit his [tee-ball league, band camp, church]. Can I sell you some tickets.” After a few times, she should get the message.


Chocobo October 25, 2012 at 2:10 pm

I don’t like these parties either. Simply saying “No, thank you!” with a smile and declining to elaborate as to why will take after a while… even if it is the thousandth time that does the trick. Eventually someone will catch on that you always say no to business “parties.” I don’t think you will be ostracized so long as you invite others and go to other events that are real social parties. I also agree with Joanna, if someone is bold enough to ask why, you can give the honest answer if you wish and tell them it’s not for you, or you already have everything you need.


Just Laura October 25, 2012 at 9:57 am

While I absolutely adore my smart phone, I know you aren’t alone. My boss and his wife (both older than you, but not old) do not own cell phones at all. They seem to do just fine too. :)


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