Opinion

Debate: Should you propose in public à la Dan Osborne?

After Dan Osborne proposed to girlfriend Jacqueline Jossa in front of her full family, we ask whether this is a moment better kept private between two people. Our Closer writers debate.

Closer Writer Ellie Hooper says: ‘It’s one of the few moments that can be for just you two’

Marriage is all about solidifying your union as a couple; showing your family and friends that you are committed to one another and to family life.

Although we don’t live in as traditional a culture as we once did, that extra step of marriage is still seen as important - even if you’ve been in a relationship for ten years and have no plans to ever separate.

It’s a way of saying, in front of everyone you respect and love, that this is for keeps; that this is the person you want to be with forever.

But while marriage is all about the public act of unification - the engagement is something different - it’s a private moment between you and your partner.

Some may prefer a private proposal...
Before the pomp and parade of the wedding day, the hen do, and everything in-between, don’t you want something that is a memory for just you two?

Recently, a close friend was proposed to by her long-term boyfriend, and although some friends of theirs had very sweetly photographed the exchange, she was understandably a little uncomfortable with the whole thing, saying it felt like an intrusion into a special moment.

I agree - this is the moment you give up your singledom (or not) and it’s a huge decision. Wouldn’t it be better to do that with the person that’s asking you, rather than surrounded by a whole host of other beaming faces, who only want one outcome? I think so.

Closer Writer Jack White says: ‘Start as you mean to go on’

The whole point of being engaged and getting married is to show off. It’s an industry worth £10 billion a year – and it all starts with that not-so-modest Tiffany sparkler.

Bragging about the ring, price and location of the proposal on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc. has become so normal that social media is probably how you’ll find out most family members/close friends are engaged.

You know how it goes: it seems every day somebody else from school/college/university is getting engaged – and you only know this from subconsciously checking your news feeds 100 times a day.

Without these people showing off for their cyber buddies, what would you and your friends have to talk/bitch about over wine at the weekends? And what do you have to aspire to when you eventually get into a committed relationship?

While it’s definitely a daily occurrence, Christmas wouldn’t be the same without the regular influx of ‘SHE/HE/I SAID YES!’ posts, would it?

While others want the world to know
I struggle to see why anybody would think getting engaged is such a private affair. It’s all you’re going to talk about for the next nine-18 months while you plan the wedding, making everybody around you hate you a little bit for your Bridezilla tendencies. You might as well start as you mean to go on.

It might be the town I’m from, but I can honestly say that I have never known anybody to get engaged and NOT put it on social media. Apart from those who did it before the times of the internet, of course.

And, as for getting down on one knee in front of a crowd, I think it’s a great idea. Undoubtedly the people around you will all be inwardly cringing, but outwardly they’ll be clapping and cheering you – what’s not to love about that?

Then you don’t even have to wait to upload a picture of the diamond to Facebook: you’ll suddenly be surrounded by people, probably some you don’t even know, oohing and ahhing over 1: 'What an ‘amazing and thoughtful’ proposal it was, and 2: How lucky you are to have each other.

In short, engagements, hen parties, stag dos, weddings and honeymoons are, these days, mostly for self-indulgence – and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that.

Closer magazine cover