Article by http://www.groomguide.com
Many guys are a little apprehensive about asking their future father-in-law for permission to marry their daughter. However, it is still proper etiquette to do so. No matter how comfortable you are with her father, the moment of truth is always somewhat awkward. But remember, he went through the same thing. Unless you are on bad terms with her father, it should go okay. The longer you dwell on it, the harder the moment becomes.
Today, it is becoming more common and somewhat “PC” to ask both parents. This will definitely impress her parents. If you need someone on your side, her mother is usually the one to give the first blessing. In special situations for instance, you may want to ask whichever parent she most recently lived with, or whom she is on better terms with. With divorced or separated parents, it is appropriate to talk to both parents separately.
Most guys want to ask the parents secretly before they actually propose. Not only is it a tradition to do so, but it may also be beneficial to talk with her mom (or sister) about rings and a plan for the proposal. They can be your best allies when it comes to rings and proposals. If the parents live near you, you may wish to contact them and inform them that you would like to meet privately. This usually gives them a little heads up to what may go down. Some guys choose to just spring it in the car, or when the have a moment alone with the parents. A classy suggestion would be to take them out to dinner when your girlfriend is on a girls-night-out.
The principle behind asking her parents is to convey your sincere love for their daughter, and your intention to have her hand in marriage. (Along with their approval and blessing.) Tell them you appreciate them for creating the most wonderful person in the world. Let them know that you promise to care for her with all your heart and that you will cherish her with the utmost respect. You may also want to add how you plan to actually care for her financially if that is an issue. It will help her Dad feel somewhat more at ease, because for some reason they always tend to bring that up. So try to bring it up for his sake before he does. Good Luck! We’re all counting on you!