This Proposal Consultant Helps Men Craft Perfect Marriage Proposals — For A Price

Even as so much about the institution of marriage has changed in recent decades, proposals (usually by males, to females) still loom large in modern, Western cultural imagination. And for those who are sort of understandably too scared to go it alone, this proposal consultant helps men craft perfect marriage proposals — for a fee, of course (via the Daily Mail). Is this overkill? Would you want to receive a professionally-designed proposal?

Claire Whelpton, of Sydney, Australia, has been hired by about 150 separate men to work with them on their proposals, via packages that cost from a few hundred to a couple thousand dollars. It's easy to see why men feel pressured to get the proposal right, seeing as how it's a high-stakes, hopefully once-in-a-lifetime situation that they want their brides-to-be to reflect upon happily on for decades to come. And the wedding industry is so incredibly huge (bloated, if you ask me) that it's hard to criticize a proposal consultant when the couple might easily spend even more money than that on silly favors or a special color of napkin for their "special day."

Indeed, Whelpton's two-year-old company, charmingly (or infuriatingly) named "Buy the Cow," seems to have high client satisfaction and a high proposal acceptance rate, judging from its Facebook posts. Of course, I wouldn't expect Whelpton to feature any possible rejected proposals there — the proposal itself can only do so much when the relationship is not marriage material. While up to 67 percent of proposal rejectors object to the proposal setting or wording, they could give multiple reasons for rejection and so may have said "no" regardless of where and how it went down.

For what it's worth, I don't have any regrets about the way it went down for me. The romance value of a serious marriage conversation or two (instead of a surprise proposal) is seriously underrated, and eloping spares you the pain of wedding planning to boot.

But assuming you're set on doing the allegedly traditional thing and not in the land down under, there are apparently many other marriage proposal consultants on the market. And if you are hoping to be on the receiving end of a very special proposal, it's time to start casually leaving those engagement- and proposal-suggestive browser tabs open for your partner now. You could also take matters into your own hands if you want to make a proposal instead, but in that case start saving, because it'll cost you — on top of the $30,000 you could be looking at for the wedding itself.

Images: Eugenio Marongiu/Fotolia; Giphy