General Question

Ender's avatar

Do I need the permission of my girlfriend's father for her hand in marriage?

Asked by Ender (177 points ) March 23rd, 2009
Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

17 Answers

marinelife's avatar

Your topics could use a little work.

I think the answer depends on her culture. If it is commonly accepted practice, then it would be a respectful thing to do.

dynamicduo's avatar

You do if you believe you do, or if you and her are a part of a culture in which it is the norm and you wish to remain in good standings.

Personally though, I think it’s an old-world train of thought, and I don’t support that mentality. I don’t think I’d be angry if my boyfriend wanted to do such a thing, but I certainly wouldn’t desire him to do so.

EmpressPixie's avatar

If you think it will be important to your girlfriend OR her family, then you should. If her family wouldn’t care, then don’t bother. It’s entirely subjective based on families.

Dorkgirl's avatar

When my husband and I got engaged (yeeeaaarrrssss ago) he called to tell my parents that he was going to propose and in a way ask permission. I thought it was sweet and my parents respected him for doing this.
It was not a cultural thing or socially required. It was just a nice gesture and brought my parents into the loop.

Mr_M's avatar

Don’t just ask for her hand.

DrBill's avatar

Now days it’s not needed, but you will score about a gigzillion brownie points with her Dad if you do.

adreamofautumn's avatar

I’d consider your culture and the type of girl your girlfriend is. I know many, many girls who would find that practice misogynistic and disgusting because we are not property to be passed from father to husband. If you’re girlfriend would fall at all into that school of thought i’d be careful not to piss her off.

forestGeek's avatar

You definitely do not need to anymore, but if you do feel it might be important to either your girlfriend and/or her parents, then why not, it wouldn’t hurt!

Ender's avatar

@adreamofautumn
To add onto your thoughts, it also seems unfair to disregard the mother’s consideration in this process.

cwilbur's avatar

Legally, no. Practically, she might find it romantic, or her family might be offended if you ask—or if you don’t ask.

@adreamofautumn: a friend of mine is a very liberated woman, who takes no nonsense from anyone. She and her boyfriend (who had been together for 2 or 3 years at that point) discussed the possibility of marriage, and agreed that they would. So she waited, and waited, and waited for him to propose. In the end, he finally did, only after he asked her father for her hand in marriage. She loved it. Her father loved it too (although his response was, basically, ”I have no objections, but you’d better check with her!”)

adreamofautumn's avatar

@Ender I agree! My dad wouldn’t get a damn say in who I marry. I mean really my mum wouldn’t either, but at least i’d take her into consideration!

@cwilbur I personally don’t like the practice for the reasons I stated above, but I wouldn’t be offended. However, there are definitely some that would be.

Mamradpivo's avatar

First of all, Lurve for your topics list.

I did not talk to my wife’s parents before I asked her to marry me (about a year and a half ago). We talked through it for several months, so it wasn’t exactly a surprise, though we didn’t tell our families until it was official.

I don’t think there’s any reason to ask for permission (it’s not his to give, it’s hers), but you should plan on spending some time doing guy things with your soon-to-be father in law.

alive's avatar

a few more details as to “pros and cons” of asking would help the collective to answer this.

but with that said. IF you do decide to ask the father, you should also ask the mother at the same time (which you mentioned) so “ask” them both… or you could do as dorkgirl’s husband, which is quite clever and nice. simply inform them you are planning to propose and you would like their blessing (hopefully you are in good standing with them, and they will give it to you).

in that way it is not misogynist or patriarchal, it just shows that you considerate of her parents feelings and that you care about the people that she cares about (assuming she has a good relationship with her parents—like i said, we need some more details)

Leysgoflyers111's avatar

Honestly I would have to answer ur question with a question do u want to earn her fathers respect and approval if so I would absolutely talk to him beforehand

EmpressPixie's avatar

@Leysgoflyers111: That may be good and well for some fathers, but others are going to see it as an archaic, outdated tradition and remind the boyfriend that he does not and will not own his daughter. It depends entirely on the family.

This goes without saying, but it depends just as much on the girl. An old fashioned father might have a very modern daughter who would be dumbfounded and offended that her boyfriend did this.

DrBill's avatar

You will score billions of brownie points if you do.

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