Before you propose in public, ask yourself why you’re doing it.

Will it increase the joy and happiness for your partner, or might it steal their thunder? Do they enjoy being the center of attention, or do they prefer quieter moments together? Will they say yes, or might the prodding from strangers nudge them there?

If any of your answers are more about you than your partner, cancel the flash mob and call off the Jumbotron.

The debate over the public marriage proposal — is it harmless and cute or narcissistic and manipulative? — surfaces nearly every time another one goes viral. This past weekend, a man proposed to his girlfriend who was in the middle of running the New York City Marathon. According to CBS News, Dennis Galvin hopped over a barrier and onto the marathon course and asked his girlfriend, Kaitlyn Curran, to marry him.

CBS said it was Curran’s first time running a marathon. She’d trained for a year and still had 10 miles to go when Galvin interrupted her to pop the question.

She said yes, cried (tears of joy or annoyance?), hugged him — and then kept running. In the video footage, she looks happy. But couldn’t he have waited? Let the woman have her moment — all 4 hours and 24 minutes of it, which she has trained so hard for — without pulling her over to give you 30 seconds of glory.

On Twitter, readers aired their thoughts for and against the proposal.

The couple hasn’t responded publicly yet. But most people prefer a private proposal — and most are done that way. In a Knot article detailing five big proposal mistakes, proposing in front of an audience was one of them. In a survey of 19,000 couples, the wedding website found that most women said proposing in public or in front of friends and family were not advised.

“Once you’ve asked and she’s (hopefully) accepted, you two will want to linger in your own little love bubble for a while — not possible if colleagues, cousins, or perfect strangers are getting in your faces to congratulate you,” according to the Knot’s story accompanying the survey.

There’s no private love bubble in the middle of a marathon course — especially when one person has to get back to conquering another 10 miles.