So legend has it, it’s deemed “acceptable” for a woman to propose to a man on 29 February, a day that comes around once every four years.
I had only just learned about this tradition when I was contacted by Madeleine, who wanted a ring made for her very own leap year proposal!
She first heard of leap year proposals in 2008 when a good friend proposed to her now husband.
“His mother had also proposed in a leap year, so it was a double-whammy cute tradition for them,” she told me. “While I think women can propose at any time, it’s sweet to use a day that only happens every four years for something so special!”
I’ve always held some strong opinions about traditional gender roles (my friends and family will attest to this). But I was curious to hear what others thought, so I put out the word to the community.
“Have you heard of this tradition? What do you think of it? In this day and age, should the man (in a heterosexual relationship) still be expected to propose?”
“I think the whole idea of who proposes to who is outdated. I’m a woman, and I’d propose to my partner who’s also a woman. If women aren’t supposed to propose, we’d never be able to get married!”
“Absolutely I would. That was my plan if he didn’t propose last year! Cam is an electrician so he can’t wear jewelry at work… So I probably would have proposed with a burger ring!”
“I proposed to my husband after 4 years together. It was in the morning as I was doing the breakfast dishes and he was getting ready to leave for work and it suddenly came over me that I really would like to have a wedding! So I asked him and luckily he said yes!”
“I have always been aware of this tradition. I ignored it. I asked my husband to marry me….. many many times. After 5 years he ‘gave in’. That was 29 years ago.”
“I don’t think there’s any one-size-fits-all approach to relationships. You have to make it your own, and make it work for you. So – if you’re a woman that wants to get married but your partner is dragging their feet, take initiative, discuss if it is what you both ultimately want, and don’t be afraid to be ‘untraditional’.”
“I don’t like the idea of proposing to a guy – I think he needs to be the one proposing.”
“Yeah I think it’s fine to propose and I wouldn’t wait till Feb to do it. It’s 2016 – anyone should be able to propose anytime! My boss did it actually and she’s been married two years now!”
“Sounds like Feb 29 is where it’s at!!!!!!!!!!! If two people are both ready and it’s not going to be a big surprise being proposed to, then I guess it’s not that critical on who does the proposing. However, personally I still think the man should be the one to propose – It’s timeless!”
So there you have it. Out of all the people that responded, I was pleasantly surprised to hear that a vast majority saw no issues with women proposing to their partners, leap year or not!
Madeleine's leap year proposal
I’m so grateful to have been given the opportunity to play a part in Madeleine and Dean’s leap year proposal! Congratulations to the beautiful couple, who have turned 29 February into a very special day for more reasons than one.
I’ve always said that in life (just as in jewellery) there are no rules. So if you’ve been thinking of proposing, and if it feels right for your relationship, I say go for it!
What do you think? In this day and age, should it still be socially expected for a man to propose?