Advice: What If I YouTube My Marriage Proposal?
BY Steven Petrow
February 13 2012 1:22 PM ET
Question: My boyfriend and I live together in Delaware, which legalized same-sex civil unions earlier this year. For years weâ€™ve been talking â€“ on and off â€” about making our relationship legal when we could. Instead of some fancy chocolates or a bouquet of roses for Valentineâ€™s Day, I think Iâ€™ve come up with a unique gift: asking him to marry me by posting a YouTube proposal on his Facebook page. What do you think?
Answer: Do you like to take huge risks? Do you think his answer will be, â€śI do!â€ť If you answered â€śyesâ€ť to both questions, then (surprise) Iâ€™m actually all for this form of public display of devotion.
An Internet proposal is another way for us to come out as couples and raise our friendsâ€™ and family membersâ€™ awareness about the importance of the freedom to marry. Especially if youâ€™re thinking of your engagement as a political act, go for it.
In fact, while you may think your idea is unique, Iâ€™m sorry to say youâ€™re not the only trailblazer on this front. Even a quick search on YouTube for â€śproposalâ€ť turns up quite a few other video overtures, most of them by very creative and self-assured partners. I wouldnâ€™t be surprised if â€śMitchell Pritchettâ€ť (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) on Modern Family goes this outrĂ© route one day.
One of my favorite â€śWill you marry me, Bill?â€ť videos stars a young New Yorker proposing to his boyfriend by making a sweet-as-pecan-pie YouTube proposal, telling the whole world, â€śOur love is real.â€ť In the video, Mikey Rox (who admits to more than 30 nervous, stammering takes) explains to his boyfriend Earl:
â€śWhen I was growing up, I was made to feel that falling in love with a man who loves and respects me was unnatural, but to be honest the love that Iâ€™ve gotten from you over the past couple of years is the most natural thing Iâ€™ve ever felt in my lifeâ€¦. So, today, Earl, Iâ€™d like to ask you if youâ€™d marry me.â€ť
At the end, Mikey admits, â€śIf you do say no, Iâ€™m going to look like a huge fool on the Internet.â€ť Fortunately for Mikey, Earl accepted the proposal via â€“ where else? â€” his Facebook page. Letâ€™s hear it for these boys.
On the other hand ,if you answered â€śnoâ€ťto either of my first questions, then my answer to you would be, â€ślovely and romantic gesture, but no, not such a good idea.â€ť Proposing in public only to be turned down is a humiliating and embarrassing experience for everyone, including the audience â€“ whether itâ€™s 50,000 fans watching on the JumboTron or 1,000,000 YouTube viewers watching on their iPads. You really donâ€™t want an audience if your answer is going to be a stony â€śnoâ€ť or â€śnot nowâ€ť or even a halting â€śbaby, we need to talkâ€¦â€ť
Still, thereâ€™s no need to send your Valentineâ€™s Day along the boring old chocolate or flowers route (not that thereâ€™s anything wrong with those, so long as thereâ€™s no babyâ€™s breath in that bouquet) when you can try some of these romantic gift ideas suggested by Greg Melvin, owner of the chic boutique Babalu Miami:
- Mix-and-match bath robes are sexy. As Melvin told me, â€śDressing like this is perfect for a romantic low-key evening at home and waking up in the morning together.â€ť
- Votive candles and holders always add a touch of romance to any coupleâ€™s evening and come in a variety of scents.
- His and his (or hers and hers) perfumes can be just the thing as long as neither of you are scent-challenged. "Itâ€™s often best to shop together for perfume since itâ€™s very difficult to choose perfume for someone else,â€ť Melvin advises, â€śunless they know exactly what they like.â€ť
- Crystal wine glasses add to any celebration, including your V-Day toast.
Or, why not mosey on down to your nearest JC Penney (or visit online), where youâ€™ll find hundreds of gifts that show your love and your support of Ellen DeGeneres as the storeâ€™s new spokesperson. (Let the manager know thatâ€™s why you came out; take a photo showing you at the store â€“ or in front of your browser open to the JCP page â€“ Facebook it or tweet it, #JCPshopin.)
Happy Valentineâ€™s to one and all, single or partnered, or even if â€śitâ€™s complicated.â€ť
Steven Petrow is The Advocateâ€™s manners columnist and author of Steven Petrowâ€™s Complete Gay & Lesbian Manners and can be found online at www.gaymanners.com. or contact him on Facebook and Twitter.
Got a question? Email Steven at email@example.com.
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