You Said “Yes”! Now What?

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Etiquette expert Karen Cleveland has joined Weddingbells as a guest blogger solving all of your decorum dilemmas. Read on for tips on how to retain poise from the minute he proposes.

Traditionally an engagement ring is sported for the first time on the day your engagement is public.  In short, if you are wearing the ring, then those nearest and dearest to you should know you are indeed engaged. Here are three things to take into account as soon as he puts a ring on it.

1. Family first
Parents are typically the first the share in the news, preferably in an intimate setting, and the same applies if you or your groom-to-be have children ─ little ones should hear the news directly from you, in private. If you and your fiancé want to be the ones to tell siblings or grandparents yourselves, it is perfectly acceptable to ask parents to stay tight-lipped for a few days, giving you time to personally tell others in your immediate family, if you like.

2. The media is the message
Once the news is out to your close friends, marvel in how quickly word travels! You will undoubtedly be relished with warm wishes ─ take the time to revel in them. If time and distance afford it, telling loved ones that you are engaged ideally happens in person (if not, a gleeful Skype or phone call will do).

3. Public announcements come last
A sage rule is that the closer the relationship to the newly-engaged couple, the more intimate the form of communication. Acquaintances might find out through Twitter or Facebook, but the people you are close enough to celebrate your birthday with, for example, should hear in a more special way. If you do tout your engagement publicly, whether that is updating your relationship status on Facebook or having your parents arrange for an engagement announcement in the newspaper, do it after your inner circle knows the news.

Karen Cleveland is a Toronto-based etiquette advisor and writer. For more on her column, Finishing School, find her on Twitter or send her your questions and conundrums here.

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