A proposal, with the guy getting down on one knee and asking for marriage while showing the ring, is one of the more romantic events in the life of men and women. The engagement ring itself is a symbol of love and committment between two people.
As we know, the guy buys the ring and really hopes she says “Yes” when he proposes with it. When she gets the ring from the guy she loves, and sees that he loves her and wants to spend his life with her, she’s overjoyed and does agree to marry him. Both people are thrilled and so excited for the future!
Amidst the mutual glow of getting engaged, people often start to assess the ring. Sometimes, unfortunately, there is dissatisfaction with the ring that was purchased. Maybe a certain type of ring has always been something she envisioned – but didn’t get when the big moment arrived. Sure, he’s a great guy and one from whom she’s thrilled about have been proposed to. But why couldn’t the ring have been one that was exactly that she liked?
Here are 3 ways to handle it – with the caveat that this is coming from a guy’s perspective:
Tell Him You Prefer Another Ring
If this is something you’ll have to wear every day, it might motivate you enough to simply ask him to get another one. Now, this of course would have to be done with extreme tact. Maybe not with every guy need that, but many men of normal means would. After all, he bought it with feelings and realizing that this is supposed to be a lifetime purchase and maybe the biggest purchase he’ll ever make. Obviously not the biggest purchase in terms of dollar amount, as houses cost tons more. But in terms of importance? Hard to imagine bigger.
Maybe he can return the ring, and you can go shopping together. This way, you get what you truly want. If it’s more expensive than what he bought originally, it might put him in a sticky situation or cause wounded pride. Hopefully not a broken engagement! But maybe it could all work out and you both could be happy if you’re happy with the ring you’ll be wearing.
Ask For an Upgrade Years Later
There are plenty of couples who have spent money on ring upgrades years after the marriage. Maybe it’s on the 10th anniversary, or maybe it’s after the first child is born. Whatever the case is, the ring is upgraded later on.
With this approach, the original ring is a part of the couple’s life together from the beginning, and nobody’s feelings get hurt up front. If the ring isn’t substantial enough in terms of the stone, or just doesn’t look the way you want it to, it’s a way to compromise feelings. You politely keep the ring as is for a while, and then ultimately get something better. Maybe this can also coincide with having additional financial means.
Forever Keep the Original Ring He Gave You
With this approach, whatever your specific dreams were for the ring you wear, they will be cast aside. The ring you get is the ring you will keep forever. Maybe it might seem that you could be “stuck” with it, or you might not view it that way.
Of course, this also means that the ring he gave you as a symbol of love is the one that would be kept forever. This way, the priority is the symbolism and personal meaning of the ring, as opposed the liking the actual physical presence of the ring. Love trumps materialism.
Plus, he’ll always know that what he gave you is something that you’ll always be happy with. He’ll feel respected.
My Thoughts on Which Approach is the Best:
I think that the best long-term approach is the third one above. Keep the ring that was given to you. It was purchased with love, and is a symbol of one person’s commitment to another and it’s given in a very romantic way. Thus, sentiment is thus prioritized over materialism.
Maybe, just maybe, the ring could be upgraded later. Perhaps he knows up front that he couldn’t buy you a great ring, and might be motivated to upgrade later. Doubtful he really thinks this way, but it’s very possible depending on the guy. In this case, again – nobody’s feelings get hurt, and everyone is happy. Depends on the couple and their situation.
I just can’t stand the notion of rejecting a ring and expecting a different one. Should be a big red flag for the guy, in my opinion. I know that might be a massively unpopular statement for some, but it’s what I think!
All of this came to mind when I was reminded of a meeting at a former workplace years ago. There were outside consultants that came in, and we met with them on some project. Anyway, toward the end of the meeting, the topic came up that someone on our team got engaged, and of course everyone said “oh CONGRATS!!” Then the ladies asked to see the ring. Honestly, it never crossed my mind and I’m certain it didn’t cross the minds of any other guy in the room. I guess we’re wired differently
Anyway, the ring must have really been nice, because there were a lot of “ooooh!” and “wow!” and “it’s gorgeous!” types of comments. Which I’m guessing is a nice and polite thing to do. However, one woman seemed especially impressed, the point of openly saying that she wished her fiancée had bought a ring like that. She actually compared the size of the newly engaged woman’s ring to that of her own ring, and proceeded to complain that she wished her fiancée wasn’t so cheap.
When the meeting was over, we all walked out of the room. I can’t forget the eye contact a colleague (and friend) and I made after that. Both of our jaws dropped, we looked at each other with eyes wide open, saying “WOW!”. Along with shaking our heads. We just couldn’t help but feel horrible for the fiancée that wasn’t there to defend himself. The guy bought a ring, and behind his back it was getting trashed. Couldn’t she just be happy for the commitment, feel fortunate and lucky, and not worry so much about comparing to others?
That whole scene was an eye opener for me. It really got me thinking at the time about what might be some good ways to handle that type of situation that would be classy. Being reminded of this past situation got me thinking that it would fun to write about it and share my thoughts.
Now I’m really interested in hearing yours!
What Do You Think?
What do you think the best way to handle this type of situation is?
Why do you feel that way?
Have you known a couple where something like this happened?
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