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As a sucker for romance, there’s nothing I love more than a beautiful proposal story to get my tear ducts flowing. Give me an over-the-top surprise scavenger hunt leading up to the big question, or an intimate moment captured by a hidden photographer—I love it all. So, it’s no surprise I jumped on the chance to showcase a few LGBTQ+ marriage proposal stories in honor of Pride Month with some help from The Knot’s “How They Asked,” a website and Instagram page dedicated to telling proposal stories from couples around the country.
Being engaged is like living on Cloud 9. It’s one of the most exciting times in any relationship, and fortunately, nothing could stop these couples from celebrating their love. The same goes for their resilience when it comes to celebrating Pride. For these three couples—Jeremy and Jason, Alayna and Taryn and Attaley and Lupe—June 2020 would have marked their first Pride Month as engaged couples, but instead, they’re at home practicing social distancing.
Even if their celebrations look a little different than they’d hoped this year, their feelings of joy and, well, pride, are still ever-present. Digital dance parties, Zoom drag shows and of course, donations made to LGBTQ+ organizations are all ways these couples are celebrating this year.
Read on for three mega-romantic proposal stories, and a look at how these lovebirds will be celebrating Pride from home.
Attaley and Lupe
Attaley planned an entire weekend around her proposal to Lupe, and doing it on Valentine’s Day weekend made the whole experience that much more romantic. “I felt like a secret agent trying to make all these things happen without acting suspicious,” says Attaley of her plan. “I was actually surprised by how calm I was…Until I got down on one knee, my heart was racing, and I felt nervous but so excited.”
The duo got engaged on the beach in Santa Cruz, the perfect location for a surprise photoshoot. “Being with Lupe on the beach, giving her my speech, it could have taken place anywhere. She was the reason it was so magical,” Attaley raved.
Being engaged to your partner during Pride definitely hits a little differently this year, so of course, Attaley and Lupe’s plans had to be adjusted quite a bit.
“Pride has actually become a big part of who we are,” says Attaley. “Before Lupe, I was really searching for who I was. Unaware of what my sexuality was or what it meant. Through our relationship, we’ve really just grown into maturity, acceptance, and love.”
During Pride, the couple would normally volunteer at the parade and then participate in the festivities themselves. “This Pride, we’ll FaceTime our loved ones and have a Zoom party to celebrate all of us,” Attaley says. “My family has been extremely supportive…so I wanted to take advantage and take them to their first Pride, even if it’s in the comfort of our own home.” The family that celebrates Pride together, stays together.
Jeremy and Jason
Prior to the big day, Jeremy had been cooking up his proposal to Jason for months. “Everything was meticulously planned—because that’s just who I am,” he says. Jeremy planned a workout-themed scavenger hunt for Jason, a combination of two of his favorite past-times. “He had to solve a puzzle each time to get clues for the next workout location,” explained Jeremy. “All were important areas where we’d worked out together so many times. We even had friends join for some of them!” Move over Gabrielle Union and Dwayne Wade, we have a new #FitnessGoals couple in town.
“As we got closer to the day, I definitely started getting nervous that Jason might figure it all out, and I played out all the worst-case scenarios in my head,” he revealed. “Once the day finally arrived, though, I was able to just have fun and enjoy it all.”
As for the most memorable part of the proposal? “For me, it was the buildup,” says Jeremy. “We did workouts throughout the day as part of a scavenger hunt. So as [Jason] completed each clue, we got closer and closer to the moment.”
Of course, while Jeremy knew what awaited them, Jason had no idea what was coming. After saying yes to the proposal, the couple’s friends and family surprised them on the spot—Jason’s favorite part of the day. “It was all a huge, wonderful moment,” he shares.
So, how will these two be celebrating Pride 2020? “We usually march in our local Pride parade and attend the festival,” says Jason, “and of course, hang out with friends. That was all before the events got canceled.” The couple now has plans to support local and national queer communities by buying tickets to “digital drag shows” and showing up for their community online.
Alayna and Taryn
Alayna and Taryn got engaged on vacation in one of the most romantic proposal stories I’ve ever heard. While on vacation in Thailand, Taryn planned a “floating breakfast” in their hotel room’s private pool. And for dessert? A gorgeous ring. “The proposal was a total surprise for me,” says Alayna.
“We walked into a room full of balloons and I—focused on food—asked, ‘Woah, is this part of the floating breakfast’?” she recalls. “It was a funny moment once I realized what was happening.” Hey, it could happen to anyone, right? For my own proposal, all the signs were definitely there too, I just didn’t pick up on them.
“I was panic-sweating the whole morning of,” says Taryn. “Alayna didn’t make my job any easier because she was in a rush to get back and enjoy breakfast!” However, it turned out her panic wasn’t necessary: “When I finally got on one knee to ask, I’m not even sure what came out of my mouth,” she says, looking back fondly at the moment. “Both of us kind of blacked out, but I do know she said yes!”
Alayna and Taryn had big plans for their first Pride as an engaged couple. “We were hoping to have a few of our queer friends over for a couples’ Pride celebration,” they explained. “Our queer circle is pretty small, and they don’t all know each other, so we were excited to bring them together.”
Thankfully, Zoom and Facetime make planning a virtual get-together super simple. “We’re thinking about asking our friends if they want to join in a virtual dance party since we won’t be able to hang in person,” they said. They’re also getting in on digital drag shows (just like Jeremy and Jason!), and joining a “virtual storytime” with drag queen Bunny O’Hare.