Engagement ring cushion cut with halo

Photo: KMH Photography

If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say it at all.

Sense a proposal on the horizon? Assuming your answer is “yes,” this is one situation where you should definitely honor that old adage. The moments after getting engaged are often so thrilling and exciting we can be prone to word vomit we’re bound to regret later. If a detail falls short of your expectations, focus on what actually matters (hello! you get to spend the rest of your life with the person you love most!) and keep those lips zipped (at least for the next decade or two).

Here are some foot-in-mouth phrases to avoid after getting engaged.


1. Took ya long enough!

Whether you and your partner have been together for months or over a decade, it’s not a good idea to bring about any guilt about your proposal’s timing. The important thing is that you and your partner are ready now so enjoy the moment!

2. Is the stone real?

You may have questions about your ring after getting engaged—save them for a later date. You’ll likely have to get your ring insured in the future, so you’ll learn all of the details during the appraisal process.

3. To be honest, I was expecting a different cut/carat size/style.

Your partner likely worked hard to find a ring that he/she thinks suits your style. Even if you’re not thrilled with it, now’s not the time to bring up any concerns (you can discuss them at a later date). The most important thing is the ring’s meaning—your impending marriage to the love of your life.

4. That wasn't much of a speech!

Your partner was probably super-nervous about saying just the right thing during the proposal. Don’t make him or her feel bad about stumbling—it’s the thought that counts.

5. I knew it was going to happen today!

Even if you weren’t surprised, act it.

6. I thought you'd come up with something more romantic/creative/intimate/elaborate.

Some proposals are planned down to the last detail, while others are more spontaneous. One type of proposal isn’t more special than the other. Savor the uniqueness of your proposal story—there’s no need to criticize your partner’s proposal style right after getting engaged.

7. Thank goodness because I don’t think I would have stuck with you much longer without a ring!

That’s just way harsh. Your partner likely had his or her reasons for waiting. There’s no need to question his or her motives immediately after getting engaged.

8. Oh. Well I definitely didn't think you'd propose here!

Sure, some proposals occur on the tops of mountains or on incredible beaches in the Caribbean. But others happen during your little brother’s Little League game or in the pouring rain at a gas station (hello, The Office!). Again, it’s the romance behind the proposal that counts—not the actual setting.

9. How much did it cost?

Really? Does it matter? Your partner likely spent an amount that he or she is comfortable with. When it comes to thinking about what to say when you get engaged, keep money issues out of it.

10. Where are all my family and friends? Are they surprising us later?

If your partner has a surprise up his or her sleeve, you’ll find out about it soon enough. And if there aren’t any surprises planned, there’s no need to make your partner feel badly about it.

11. Aw, how sweet. Can we go now because Real Housewives starts in 10 minutes?

Hello, priorities?

12. Did you really not hire a photographer?

Yes, it’s a good idea to hire a photographer to capture the big moment when you get engaged. But if your partner forgot that step, no good will come from criticizing him or her about it.

13. I actually found the ring in your pants pocket/sock drawer last week...

Time to put your acting skills to use—just act surprised.

14. There’s no way you can afford this.

Now is not the time to be critical of your partner’s finances. Whether your partner borrowed money from his or her parents or worked a second job to make some extra cash, it’s not your concern right now.

15. This ring makes my fingers look fat.

No, it doesn’t.