Best Way To Reject An Arranged Marriage Proposal
How to Refuse a Marriage Proposal
Marriage involves turning your entire life around to accommodate a second person. One has to be certain that he or she is the one, before making such a serious commitment. Declining a proposal can be a painful, even dangerous business for all involved, and you'll need to take careful measures to minimize the potential fallout.
Declining a Proposal Politely
Request time to think about it.If the proposal comes from someone you genuinely care about, and you just aren’t sure if you’re ready for marriage, ask them for time to think about it.
- Saying “no” to a proposal is surprisingly common, so do not feel as if you’re being unusual or cruel.
- Asking for time to think about things may hurt your partner’s feelings, but it will buy you time to reflect, and leaves you the option to say “yes” if you change your mind, or to explain yourself carefully if you don’t.
Consider why you’re in the relationship.If you decide that marriage, ultimately, is not your goal but your partner disagrees, then it’s probably time to break things off anyway. If you do see matrimony as a possibility, then you will have to handle matters gently to avoid causing lasting hurt feelings.
- This is a matter for some introspection. Try not to make a hasty or ill-considered decision, because there are likely to be far-reaching consequences for your relationship no matter what you do.
- Think about what constitutes a healthy marriage, and what your motivations for saying “yes” would be. Marriage probably won’t save a struggling relationship, but it can enrich a healthy one.
Be firm and honest if you decide on “no.” Proposing to someone is a stressful thing to do, and you likely care deeply about this person. Kindness, sensitivity, and honesty will go a long way in making your refusal less painful to them.
- Tell them your answer in person, if possible. It’s only fair.
- If you or they are too emotional for an in-person refusal, then a telephone conversation or a hand-written letter are the next best options. You should not use a highly impersonal method like text messaging to turn them down.
Ask them to wait, if you truly are not sure.It may result in some hurt feelings, but you can overcome those with time, and if they truly love you, giving you a little time will not change that fact.
- How long you wait depends entirely on you and your partner. You do not want to rush a decision on marriage if you aren’t sure, but on the other hand you owe your partner a definitive answer at some point.
- Have some empathy for your partner as you consider things. They are likely waiting on pins and needles for your answer, and ultimately marriage is a cooperative venture. Keep them foremost in your mind as you think about what to do. When you’re ready, break the news to them without delay.
Remember that “maybe” is an answer too.Not every relationship has matrimony as the goal, and declining a proposal does not necessarily spell doom for everyone. Plenty of people create long-lasting, satisfying partnerships without formally getting married.
- Just because you aren’t ready to tie the knot today doesn’t mean you’ll never want to do it. Explain to your partner that you’re not ready for that step just yet.
- If you never want to get married, you need to tell your partner. They may be fine with it, they may not, but you owe it to them to be honest.
Keep it quiet.If you decline the proposal, it is your obligation to keep the news to yourself. Politeness dictates that you should spare your partner the potential embarrassment and humiliation of others bringing up their rejection.
- If you want to tell someone about it, the right thing to do is to ask your partner if they mind first.
- Only tell people you trust not to spread the story around. A spurned proposal is exciting gossip, so make sure that it isn’t being spread around needlessly.
Rejecting an Unwelcome Proposal
Give a firm, but polite, “no.” If someone you do not have a particularly close relationship with proposes, or you are receiving repeated proposals despite rejecting them, the time for ambiguity is past. You are under no obligation to worry about hurting the feelings of someone who is stalking or harassing you.
- You don’t need to explain yourself at all in this situation. They should respect your wishes, period.
Keep your distance.While it may not always be possible, staying away from the source of unwanted advances can stop your troubles before they start.
- In this instance, a text-message rejection is not only appropriate, it may be advisable.
- You should not, however, be forced to change your life and routine because of this. If the other person’s presence makes it difficult or dangerous to go about your business, you are likely being harassed and should take appropriate action.
Ask a friend to be with you for support.Not only can they provide you with emotional help, they’re also available as a witness to events and a deterrent in case things go badly.
- Make them fully aware of the situation. They need to know what they’re getting into.
Be prepared to call the police.In some cultures refusing a proposal can be downright dangerous, especially for women. If you think there is a chance of violence or other danger, be ready to call for help.
- If you are concerned for your safety, stay in a public, well-lit area. If you believe you are in imminent danger call 911 and stay on the line with the dispatcher until help arrives.
- You may consider keeping a small self-defense tool on hand, such as pepper spray, if local laws permit it.
Refusing a Public, Surprise Proposal
Give unsubtle hints that you would not like a highly public proposal.The time to prevent the ballpark jumbotron proposal is before it starts.
- If you see a public proposal together on a television show or movie, say something along the lines of “Wow. I would absolutely hate it if someone did that to me. It’s so tacky.”
- If your partner needs a more obvious example of why a public proposal is a bad idea, watch any of the dozens of public-proposals-gone-wrong videos that are widely available online. Fear of humiliation can be a powerful motivator.
Do your best to recover from the surprise quickly.If you do receive a proposal in a highly public setting like a ballpark, it’s very likely that many sets of eyes, and even cameras, are watching your every move. Every second you take to get over the shock adds to the tension.
- Concentrate on your breathing to quickly regain some composure.
- Identify a way out. Look for a door, a concourse, or even a natural barrier like trees or bushes. Having an escape route available will help reduce feelings of panic.
Quickly ask them to go somewhere private to talk.You want to get out of the public eye in an expeditious manner so you can talk things over with less pressure.
- Do your best to control your body language and facial expressions, and suggest to your partner that “I would much rather talk about this privately,” or that “I want to answer you, but I’m too nervous in front of all these people.”
- Try not to give the impression that the answer will be “no” until you’re safely out of sight. Any answer that isn’t an immediate “yes” will have your proposer worried and stressed, so do not add to it if you can help it.
If they won’t move, say “no” quickly.Consider giving them a hug while you do it, and do your best to keep a smile on your face. All eyes are on you.
- Spare their pride and feelings if you can, but if that becomes impossible then your best move is to get things over with as quickly as possible.
Get out of there.Regardless of how well (or disastrously) your refusal went, everybody in the immediate area is going to recognize you and maybe even ask you about what happened. Don’t give them the opportunity.
- A modest disguise can help. Put on, or take off, a hat or sunglasses, or make other quick, minor changes to your appearance. People that only had a quick glimpse of you may not recognize you afterward.
- Find the back door, or another exit from the area that isn’t crowded. You don’t want to have to shoulder your way through a throng of humanity while making your escape.
QuestionWhy would someone reject a marriage proposal?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerA marriage proposal might be rejected for a variety of reasons. The person may not be ready for commitment yet, feel pressured, not appreciate being asked in a public environment, not be sure about you as a lifelong partner, be in love with someone else, feel too nervous, be scared by the idea, be caught unawares, and much more. Assume nothing and be prepared to follow up to talk about it, without being mean, pressurizing or angry.Thanks!
QuestionI got a proposal, my family accepted it but the guy didn't reveal his decision. I tried to contact him, but he never showed interest. Now I'm in love with another guy, so what shall I do?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerYou should focus on your new chapter in life, and be happy with the person your in love with. If fate brings you and the person who proposed back together, then focus on that part of life, too.Thanks!
QuestionCan you please tell me how to tell a man I don't want any children with him?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerIf you are in a relationship with this man and he wants children but you don't, you must talk to him and explain how you feel. If he is a good man, he will understand. He then has the choice to do one of two things: a) stay with you, content to not have children, or b) end the relationship if he wants to have children more than he wants to stay with you. If he chooses option b, then you know he wasn't the man for you anyway.Thanks!
- Give yourself all the time you need. There is a reason, call it intuition or whatever you like, behind your doubts or misgivings about accepting this marriage proposal.
- Believe in yourself and in your decision.
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