‘Our marriage proposal was a private affair’

What you need to know:

On her graduation day, Ivan organised a dinner and invited Esther’s family members. However, he waited for all the guests to leave before getting down on one knee. This, he says, is the way it should be done since this is an intimate moment between the couple.

With social media having such a strong influence on our lives, we can often find details of people’s relationships. From photos of romantic vacations together to vague posts referring to relationship problems, the intimate details of relationships are available for the world to see.

According to marriage.com, sharing the details of your life online may be commonplace, but there are reasons to keep your relationship private. Keeping your relationship private does not mean that you hide your significant other from the world or pretend you are not in a relationship. Certainly, you can talk about your relationship with other people. Still, the point of privacy in relationships is that you do not feel the need to obtain other people’s approval.

Keeping your relationships private means that you and your partner share the most intimate details of your lives, but you do not share them with the world. This also means you do not post every emotion or fight on social media.

“With a private relationship, you do not need to worry about what other people think of your relationship, nor are you focused on making other people jealous or impressing them with your love life.  The private relationship centres on keeping the intimate details of your relationship between you and your partner. This creates sacred relationships in which you and your partner have a mutual understanding and remain unaffected by other people’s opinions,” states marriage.com.

And it is because of these reasons that Ivan Francis Mugimba, an electrical engineer, decided to go against the norm today to privately profess his love for Esther Ochom, a businesswoman on Oct 27, 2017.

The proposal

“On the day I graduated from university, my brother drove my parents and I to a dinner at Imperial Hotel in Kikooni, Kampala, which my boyfriend had organised,” Esther says.

She had no idea he was going to propose. After all other guests had left the party, Ivan got down on one knee and asked Esther to be his wife.  To Ivan, this was a commitment between the two love birds and he did not see any reason for the others to witness their intimate moment.

“Besides, I was afraid she would reject my proposal if I asked her to marry me in the presence of everyone else. I could not handle such an embarrassment so asking her when it was just the two of us made perfect sense,” he explains.

Dressed in a white dress, red shoes and her graduation gown, Esther knew it was the right moment and since her family was aware of their relationship her response was easy.

“I was happy; I accepted the ring and hugged him so tightly. I did not want to let go. It was a beautiful surprise that I cherish to this day,” she says.

Hard to get

“I met Esther on the morning of April 3, 2012,” Ivan recalls.

Her church (Christ Witness church in Ntinda, Kampala) had invited my church (Victory Covenant Church) for a thanksgiving ceremony. It was here that her cousin, a childhood friend, introduced us.

However, despite Ivan’s God-fearing, caring and hardworking personality, she did not think of anything romantic and just greeted him as a ‘brother’ in Christ. She had just come out of a relationship and was not ready to immediately jump into another.

Ivan took it upon himself to look for her contact and kept in touch, never losing focus on the fact that he wanted her for a wife. Their first date, he shares, was at a restaurant in downtown Kampala where he told her his true intentions.


Ivan was patient and with time, Esther accepted to be his wife. On January 26, 2018, the two exchanged their vows at Victory Convenant Church in Kampala and later hosted more than 500 guests to a reception at St Andrew’s Church, Makerere University.

“The wedding preparations were hectic since we had only three weeks to put it together but succeeded because God was on our side,” they reveal.

The couple says so far, the marriage has been a blessing and there has been plenty to learn. They have made it work through being patient and forgiving each other’s shortcomings.


Esther shares her pregnancy struggles which disorganised plans for their fifth wedding anniversary early in the year.

“At seven months of pregnancy, the doctors said my baby was transverse (positioned horizontally across the uterus) making it likely for me to undergo a caesarean section. I was also always in pain since my placenta was below the cervix,” she explains.

While three of her pregnancies were a walk in the park, with her fourth, she was forced to take bed rest, which was a worrying time for her family.


Private relationships are sacred relationships because you will develop a special connection with your partner that only the two of you know about. Beyond that, you will be free from outside pressures, and you will not have to deal with other people throwing their opinions at you.

While privacy is important, remember that there is a difference between a private relationship and a secret relationship. If your partner is trying to keep you a secret, they may be acting as if they are single because they are not ready to commit or do not want to be tied down.

Source: www.marriage.com