What to ask yourself before proposing this holiday season

Dec 10, 2021, 4:05 PM | Updated: 4:10 pm
FILE - In this April 10, 2014 file photo, Steven Paska, 26, of Arlington, Va., proposes to his girl...
FILE - In this April 10, 2014 file photo, Steven Paska, 26, of Arlington, Va., proposes to his girlfriend of two years Jessica Deegan, 27, framed by cherry blossom trees in peak bloom, in Washington D.C. Deegan said yes to the surprise marriage proposal. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, File)
(AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, File)

LOGAN, Utah — December is among the most popular times to propose to a partner, and many couples in love are hearing a different set of bells this holiday season.

But what should you ask yourself before telling your partner “I do”?

Couple and Family Relationships professor from Utah State University Naomi Brower told Jeff Caplan’s Afternoon News with tips and tricks to make sure young couples are making the right decision. 

It’s all about the timing

“It’s important to realize that a lot of couples get engaged really quickly and that can be problematic because most people are on their best behavior when they first meet,” said Brower. “It usually takes time to feel comfortable with who you really are.”

What is a good amount of time to wait before popping the question? 

“It’s important to know someone at least 90 days before you commit,” she said.

Ninety days is the minimum, and it’s okay to know someone for longer than that.  

Looking for some conflict

Brower says fighting and conflict is a normal part of every relationship, and it’s important to have good conflict resolution. And you should give your relationship time to develop both. 

“It takes time for a pattern of behavior to emerge, it’s a process that can’t really be rushed.”

“It’s important to see how others react to stress in different situations,” said Brower.

She says it’s also important to see how others react around your family to see if there are any red flags. If you see something that concerns you in a partner’s family, they could later show up in your partner’s behavior. 

Does a longer engagement mean a happier marriage?

“Just because they popped the question doesn’t mean you have to get married right away,” she said.  

Brower says above all else, it’s best to ask yourself if you are truly ready to make the big leap into marriage. The best relationships are built on a foundation of trust between two happy and healthy people who are ready to take on the challenges of a new life together.

Couples who are prepared to take the next step have dealt with their own personal challenges, and aren’t looking for someone to help them or fix them in any way.

And as for her parting advice, Brower recommends taking relationship classes to further strengthen bonds, no matter what the level of relationship.

You can find more information and class schedules on relationships here.

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What to ask yourself before proposing this holiday season