Company even offers a consolation gift if he says no.
As in most countries, social norms in Japan usually dictate that the man in a romantic relationship be the one to pop the question and propose marriage. A new service from online retailer Best Surprise, though, gives women a unique way to get the ball rolling on progressing from boyfriend and girlfriend to husband and wife.
The Nadeshiko Reverse Proposal Ring Set includes, of course, a ring. Also part of the package is some elegant stationery, on which the aspiring bride can draft a proposal letter of her own, or adapt a sample letter provided by Best Surprise to meet her specific needs.
▼ Best Surprise recommends a message that’s cute, humorous, and, perhaps most important of all, direct in laying out your feelings and marital aspirations.
When placing an order, the customer also provides her boyfriend’s mailing address, and the company will deliver the package to him. After reading the letter, should he accept, he’s supposed to meet his lady love in person and slip the ring on her finger, making their engagement official.
But as classic soul song “Everybody Plays the Fool” explained some four and a half decades ago, there’s no guarantee that the one you love is going to love you. Should the guy who receives the ring in the mail wish to maintain his bachelor status, he’s instructed to place the ring in a separate envelope that’s included with the delivery and send it back to Best Surprise. While no refund will be issued to the woman who made the purchase, Best Surprise will send her a diamond necklace “in celebration of her taking the first step of her new [single] life.”
▼ The conciliatory/celebratory necklace, seen on the far right
Along with being an emotional leap of faith, the Nadeshiko Reverse Proposal Ring Set is a bit of a financial one as well, since an unscrupulous cad could reject the proposal and pocket the ring for resale or some other nefarious purpose. However, the Nadeshiko Reverse Proposal Ring Set is surprisingly inexpensive, priced at just 10,000 yen (US$86). If it’s a risk you’re ready to take, it can be ordered through Rakuten here.
Follow Casey on Twitter, where he’d like to thank the saleswoman for being so patient during the half-dozen shopping excursions he spent picking out an engagement ring for his wife.
[ Read in Japanese ]