Boyfriend’s household ring? No, thanks. Carolyn Hax readers give recommendation.


We requested readers to channel their internal Carolyn Hax and reply this query. Among the finest responses are beneath.

Pricey Carolyn: My boyfriend and I’ve began speaking about getting engaged within the subsequent 12ish months. My dad was a jeweler, and I grew up hoping to have a custom-designed engagement ring. In the meantime, my boyfriend has a household ring he picked out. His mom let him and his sister every decide a hoop from their “household assortment.” He has no specific attachment to it, apart from “it’s free” and his mom actually needs him to make use of it. We’ve mentioned how essential it’s to me to make this choice collectively and he type of understands but additionally doesn’t perceive why I wouldn’t simply desire a “free” ring. I don’t know how one can clarify my need to choose a hoop collectively. Any recommendation? Or am I being rigid?

New Ring Please: My now-husband took his mom’s suggestion over my written choice on what ring to choose from the checklist I supplied him (our agreed-to course of). And guess what? That ring received returned and I’m fortunately carrying the one I wished. My husband and I have been aligned that the engagement ring was an essential buy that we should always each be ok with, and in the end, was there for me to get pleasure from. We additionally overtly mentioned funds.

You say you don’t know how one can clarify what you need, however, over the course of a wedding, you’ll need to elucidate your needs a whole lot of occasions. Take this as a possibility to apply. Strive on phrases to elucidate your emotions the identical manner you’ll attempt on rings. Then, have a dialog along with your boyfriend about what’s essential to you, to him and what’s financially affordable.

You additionally have to get aligned on his mom’s acceptable function on this choice — that it isn’t hers to make. If she is susceptible to pushing her opinions onto her son, it’s good to start out establishing boundaries now whereas nonetheless being delicate to her emotions. The ring could have sentimental worth to her or characterize your being welcome into the household. In that case, you’ll find a strategy to categorical gratitude for that sort sentiment with out bowing to her preferences.

New Ring Please: Is perhaps price zeroing-in on this level: “His mom actually needs him to make use of it.” Is he utterly ignoring your needs and planning to provide you a hoop you’re presupposed to put on on a regular basis that you just don’t like as a result of he’d somewhat simply appease his mother? In that case, please simply know that it is a downside that doesn’t go away. If you wish to marry this man, it’s important to be ready for his mother’s emotional wants to come back earlier than yours — at all times, every time they’re in battle. Individuals have a lot of opinions about engagement rings, however his blithe, meek response to one thing that’s extraordinarily significant for you — and carries your personal household significance — says one thing about his character that it is best to assume exhausting about earlier than marrying him.

New Ring Please: I used to be in an identical state of affairs, and we labored out a compromise. Whereas the ring itself wasn’t essential to my now-husband, he anxious that my robust need for one thing completely different and costlier symbolized that what he (and his household) needed to supply wasn’t sufficient. Neither of us wished to start out the wedding that manner, and neither of us wished me to put on one thing I didn’t like on a regular basis “for the remainder of my life.” So we lopped off the tip of that sentence and agreed I’d put on it for our engagement, after which put on no matter I wished as a marriage band.

I selected a diamond cocktail ring I nonetheless adore 20 years later, and put on the opposite ring on my proper hand for household occasions. His household and strangers alike nonetheless gush over the sweetness and that means of BOTH rings.

New Ring Please: I had at all times been a individuals pleaser. My smothering new in-laws-to-be pushed the household ring that was given to the Older Son, who subsequently divorced and received the “treasure” again, on to me, soon-to-be spouse of Youthful Son. I hated it and its legacy however didn’t know how one can say no.

Say no. Please. That is your time to put on the illustration of your love and future proudly, by yourself phrases, by yourself finger. I by no means wore this ring, making up a brand new lie each time I used to be requested the place it was. Then, nearing our seventeenth anniversary, after I was wandering by a beautiful jewellery retailer with my two younger sons, we went in, and I allow them to pick the ring they wished me to put on. I’ve proudly worn that illustration of our household’s love ever since. It represented my future, as we now method our fortieth anniversary.

New Ring Please: My dad inherited a two-carat diamond ring. The diamond itself was beautiful, however the ring appeared dated. So he used that diamond and had a hoop made for my mother with the diamond because the centerpiece. That may very well be a wonderful compromise for you and your boyfriend, particularly because the ring being custom-designed is a part of what you’re hoping for anyway. Assuming the gemstone(s) within the heirloom rings are price incorporating right into a {custom} design, in fact.

Each week, we ask readers to reply a query submitted to Carolyn Hax’s dwell chat or electronic mail. Read last week’s installment here. New questions are usually posted on Fridays, with a Monday deadline for submissions. Responses are nameless except you select to establish your self and are edited for size and readability.

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