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With This Ring…

A few months ago an article about a company that makes prototype engagement rings was brought to my attention, which made me think about my own preferences concerning engagement rings and proposals.

tiffany-diamond-engagement-ringThe company mentioned in the article makes a mock-up ring, using a 3D printer and lower grade materials (silver instead of platinum of gold, Swarovski crystals in place of diamonds or other precious gemstones), in order to let the consumer make his proposal without incurring extra expenses in the event that he’s either told NO, or that the recipient doesn’t like the ring he picked out/designed. 

The idea is interesting, and I can see how it could work for some couples, but what concerns me are the parts about it being helpful in the case where the answer is NO (shouldn’t getting engaged and then married be a discussion a couple has prior to the purchase of expensive jewelry and a subsequent proposal?!?) and the use of a sample ring that can be modified prior to purchasing the “real” ring (hopefully if the day ever comes where I’m being asked to marry someone, they will know me well enough to choose something that I’ll like without me wanting to change anything about it).

In past “serious” relationships, marriage someday was discussed, and while neither of those relationships ended in an engagement, I remember talking about rings and even looking at a few with both men while still in the relationship with each. Despite the fact that I like a lot of sparkle and thought I’d want something super blingy, I was surprised that my tastes kept veering back to a simple, single solitaire– something without a lot of fuss.

With all of the talk about rings and marriage in the future, I started to overlook problems in those relationships and think I was guilty of being more concerned with forcing myself into a future that I thought I wanted, instead of realizing that I was planning for a future that would never exist because I was with the wrong person both times.  I’m thankful that both of those “serious” relationships ended before I’d made a commitment that I wouldn’t have been able to keep, and definitely learned a lot of life lessons while dating those men (and even learned from others who I dated but the relationship never turned serious).

I still haven’t dated Mr. Right, but I’m hopeful that someday it’ll happen, and in the meantime have learned to not try to push a relationship into the serious category too early, or even start talking marriage until I know that I could have a future with that person. Wrapping my mind around the concept of taking it slow and not immediately planning out a future (in my head) with every guy I’ve dated was a hard lesson to learn, but I think it’s crucial to remember to not push a relationship into the committed-serious stage until it’s ready to go there naturally.

As far as rings and proposals go, I like the idea of receiving such a precious symbol from someone I love as a sign of their love and commitment to me and our relationship, but getting a ring shouldn’t be the end goal of a relationship. Each person being happy with the other and knowing that you’ve found someone to share your life with should be the end goal.

Two happily married couples I know personally (my sister and her husband, and my mom and step-dad) went without engagement rings completely. Instead, both couples chose matching wedding rings, and entered into their marriages as partners.

I can’t remember the details of my sister’s engagement story (Melanie, feel free to leave it in the comments or correct any details I’ve messed up), but I do remember that when my mom and step-dad were planning to get married, he insisted on getting my mom something,  and she decided what she needed more than a diamond was a new microwave. When they built their new house and no longer needed that microwave, they brought it anyway. (After sitting unused in their kitchen for a couple of years, I finally inherited it and it lives in my apartment now.)

Relationship/engagement stories like my parents’ are what I’d rather have than a big ring that has caused my someday significant other to go into debt. And honestly, I’d probably be happy with a cool story, a fancy cupcake, and just knowing that I’ve found a partner who I’m willing to spend the rest of my life with and who is ready to make that same commitment to me.

Sorry that my thoughts are a little all over the place here, but hopefully I’ve made some sense tonight.

What are your thoughts about engagement rings, proposals, or engagements? Do you have a cool or noteworthy engagement story of your own to share? If so, I’d love to hear all about it. 🙂

For the male perspective on this topic, click over to an older post from my friend and fellow blogger, Jamey.

 

Responses (3)

  1. An engagement cupcake! Awesome! 🙂

    I also think this line is quite introspective and insightful: “With all of the talk about rings and marriage in the future, I started to overlook problems in those relationships and think I was guilty of being more concerned with forcing myself into a future that I thought I wanted, instead of realizing that I was planning for a future that would never exist because I was with the wrong person both times.”

    • Katy says:

      Thanks Jamey! I thought a cupcake seemed fitting for me, right? (And not to give away too many spoilers, but I have a theory about cupcakes being a nearly perfect dessert.) 🙂

      The line you pointed out was my favorite one of this post, and it took a lot of guts for me to admit that fact, and actually share my realization.

  2. You are correct Katy! I did not have a desire for an engagement ring. We were planning to go on the mission field after we were married and I didn’t want the bling. So, instead, I was given wedding workshop software as an engagement gift. Which, as a hyper organizing freak was perfect. Especially as we set our wedding date for two and a half months from the date we were engaged and I was finishing up my undergrad and starting a new job!

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