The Moment Real Grooms Realized They Were Ready to Propose

When you know, you know!

We asked real grooms featured in the pages of Inside Weddings when they knew they would propose one day.

Photo: Melissa Mermin | Love Stories

Falling in love is a powerful thing, but even stronger is when you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with that person. Whether or not you’re actually at a place in life to get married, having that feeling can help get the ball rolling to start planning your life with your sweetheart. We asked real grooms featured in the pages of Inside Weddings when they knew they would propose one day. Read their romantic stories below and then click each name to see how the dream wedding day turned out!

blonde woman in blue patterned dress hugging man in blue linen sports coat in front of ocean

Photo by Thanos Asfis

“Pretty soon after we started dating, I had the feeling that this was the girl. We ended up dating for about four years before I actually proposed, but I basically knew from the start.” - Sam

“The moment I knew I wanted to propose was at Valentine’s Day the year before. There was a moment of genuine laughter and happiness that I will never forget, and that’s when I knew I wanted this to be forever.” - Trevor

“I just knew!” - Cody

“Very early on… about a month (probably less) into our relationship I lost track of all the qualities I love about Sarah and was instead looking for red flags… couldn’t find any!” - Andrew

“I knew I wanted to propose when I realized that it was time to take our relationship to another level after two years of dating. I was confident of how nurturing and patient she was throughout. I knew that I was comfortable with her and we’ve talked about how exciting it would be raising a family together.”  - Kimbal

“Within three months of dating, I realized she was the one while swinging in my hammock together. I remember thinking to myself, I could rock in the hammock with Danielle forever… she is the one. I ended up proposing three years after meeting.” - Brian

“When is easy! I knew I wanted to propose to Emily during a road trip. Road trips, in my opinion, are a wonderful way to test a budding, fresh relationship. As simple as it sounds, having uninterrupted time on the road to really relax and talk is something that you just can’t beat. During one road trip Emily and I took from Dallas to Alabama we had an uninterrupted 15 hours alone in the car. We laughed and explored a few dives along the way. One specific conversation we had, about something random, amongst many tears of laughter, I remember having one crystal clear moment behind the wheel. I remember I looked over at her, hidden among a blanket she was wrapped in the passenger seat, knowing this is it. I knew it then, know it now, and will always know that. Every day going forward I feel that the Lord blessed me with a sneak peek of the life He planned for me and for us.” - Stuart

“It wasn’t like a light bulb that turned on but more like a transition from pure joy in being with someone, to comfort and love, to an inability to imagine spending my life with anyone else. Together, Katie and I make an amazing team. Sometimes we click better than others, but the core of who we are truly complements the other.” - Cory

“We took a trip to France and Greece. While in France, we had spent a long day touring every corner of the Palace of Versailles. While we were on the train back to Paris, I remember thinking right then and there that she was the woman that I wanted to spend the rest of my life with – no doubt about it!” - Brian

“Probably two or three years into our relationship, I think I realized that I could not envision living without her." - Josh

“I knew I wanted to propose to Shawnte after meeting her family. I quickly learned that Shawnte was my soul mate and the final step for me was getting to know her family. Family means everything to me and I believe that one beautiful thing about a marriage is the merging of families. After traveling to North Carolina to meet hers, I was ready to propose.” - Eric

“There was not a moment in particular in which I realized I wanted to propose. As a matrimonial attorney for a firm in Manhattan, I work with unsuccessful marriages on a daily basis. As such, I am very cognizant of what it takes to make a marriage work, and the type of relationships that are more likely to succeed. Nikki and I dated for over a year and half before I proposed. During that period, I learned that Nikki is an incredible woman, who is smart, confident, kind, generous, caring, sincere and selfless. More importantly, I also found her to be a true partner, who has and would continue to provide me with unwavering support, endless confidence, and constant love. At some point, it became a no-brainer, and it was just a natural progression to take our relationship to the next level.” - Ryan 

“After a few months of dating, we went out with friends to celebrate my birthday. At the end of that evening, I knew that I wanted to marry Sarah. Years went by before we were engaged, but I had the idea of proposing on the beach after we went searching for seashells during a beach trip to Florida.” - Christopher