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I don't like wearing my engagement ring (advice?)


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Mandragora

I've been engaged to my lovely fiance for almost five months now. The proposal was super sweet and unexpected, especially since both of us have discussed being the practical engagement sort so I thought if we were ever going to do so we'd like. Sit down and have a talk and agree to get engaged and maybe not even bother with rings and if we did probably something cheap. Neither of us are big jewelry people, I typically wear none. But he completely surprised me by going out and buying a ring on his own and proposing to me. One of the very few times I was happy to be surprised, I'm not the biggest romantic but it was...Well it was actually pretty nice to have a romantic proposal instead of the practical one I expected. The engagement has been lovely so far and we've talked a little about wedding planning. There's only really one thing that is an issue. 

 

I don't love the ring and I don't like wearing it either. It's been...Hard to get used to. I take it off a lot more than I think most people do. And it's a pretty large one too since the center stone isn't diamond. I like how it looks okay but it's just. A bit bigger than I'd like and it gets caught on things and feels weird to wear. I also know he spent a fair amount of money on it so I'd never ask to get a different one anyway and that's why I'm kind of nervous about maybe asking to wear it as a necklace (as I think that would be at least a little easier) because I have such a terrible poker face. I'm very nervous about him asking if I don't like it and being "found out" as it were...I know this is something I'll probably just have to get over and broach eventually but I just feel terrible about the idea of making him feel bad for doing something that was so genuinely sweetly surprising and that I did like. 

 

This is truly a minor issue I guess the reason it niggles at me and I haven't just tried to bite the bullet is I'm afraid since he made such an unexpected romantic and traditional gesture in buying the ring and proposing he could take it badly that I would want to wear it in a nontraditional way. And I'm genuinely grateful for it and don't want to make him feel like he wasted his money and effort doing so. 

 

So, advice, maybe? I don't know what the most tactful way to approach it would be, or if I even should. I've never had any engaged friends so I don't really have anyone irl to ask about it so I figured I'd ask here. 

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Lysandre, the Star-Crossed

I'd politely tell him that it's a bit uncomfortable for you to wear rings, so instead you would like to wear it on a chain around your neck. That it has nothing to do with the gift or the symbolism, only the way of wearing it.

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Yeah, I wouldn't be offended if my fiance wanted to wear their ring around their neck.  Honestly I think a lot of massage therapists do that, as well as people who work with their hands.

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Calliers

Yeah, I also don't think he would mind if you wanted to wear it around your neck.

 

I almost once upon a time got engaged and my then girl friend told me that she would rather wear her ring around her neck and I didn't mind, it isn't really such a big deal to most people I don't think.

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- 𝕱𝖗𝖆𝖌𝖌𝖑𝖊𝕽𝖔𝖈𝕶 -

This is my take, obviously, but I feel like you'd be fine saying all that. You seem very reasonable and compassionate and it sounds like he is too (and likely to be, since like tends to attract like in that way).

 

Everybody gets to control what they wear, right? And especially since there was no discussion of whether you like rings, or what kind of rings, or whether there'd even be a ring, someone can hardly expect that someone else just automatically likes any particular gift, right?

 

One thing to consider, probably before talking to him, is whether it's just that you're not crazy about it that you're afraid to mention. Or whether, in fact, you'd also prefer not to wear it at all. I'd say be honest with yourself first, and that way you can approach the conversation without surprises on anyone's part.

 

And yeah I know a number of people who don't like rings, or at least ones with stones, etc. My mom pretty quickly swapped her original ring with a simple gold band because it was easier to work with. (I have no idea of the logistics of that, I assume she asked my dad first, out of politeness.)

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OggleSand

When I first started wearing a ring, I was 23 and it took me years to get used to it. I'd take it off and play with it and put it back on, but whenever it was on, I would always feel it. It took a solid 2-3 years until I didn't feel it all the time and didn't fiddle with it when my hands were idle. And that was just a simple metal band with no stones. The next ring I wore all the time is my wedding band, and it was much easier to get used to another ring, it only took 2 or 3 months until I didn't feel it all the time and it faded into the background. Years later, I don't really feel either of them, don't notice them on, I guess my brain has learned to tune out those signals from my fingers.

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nanogretchen4

Precious metals and precious stones are supposed to hold their value, so I imagine your fiance could exchange your ring for another ring that is more to your tastes. Often people who plan to propose to their partner will first browse through jewelry stores or ask questions about what sort of rings they like. If your fiance skipped this step, it might be better to tell him that you would feel more comfortable wearing a smaller ring rather than having to make excuses for not wearing it for decades to come.

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EmeraldIce
17 minutes ago, nanogretchen4 said:

Precious metals and precious stones are supposed to hold their value, so I imagine your fiance could exchange your ring for another ring that is more to your tastes. Often people who plan to propose to their partner will first browse through jewelry stores or ask questions about what sort of rings they like. If your fiance skipped this step, it might be better to tell him that you would feel more comfortable wearing a smaller ring rather than having to make excuses for not wearing it for decades to come.

Like many of us, it sounds likes she's uncomfortable wearing a ring, period. Getting a smaller ring wouldn't help.

 

The necklace idea sounds reasonable to me. It doesn't hurt to discuss it, but I also don't think it's that big of an issue. Wearing it at all shows that you appreciate the money and thought he spent on it, even if it's not on your finger. You also don't have to wear it at all. Presenting a ring at an engagement is just a ritual that some men like to do, or that some men expect their girlfriends to want unless they explicitly state otherwise. It doesn't mean you're obligated to wear it forever afterwards, and wearing it or not certainly says nothing about your relationship. I grew up not knowing ANYONE in my family and circle of family friends who wore an engagement or wedding ring. All of these people have grandkids by now and are still married to this day.

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Eutierria
12 hours ago, Mandragora said:

I don't love the ring and I don't like wearing it either.

Would wearing it as a necklace feel comfortable for you or will you start resenting that you have a chain around your neck not of your choosing ? You'd mentioned that it catches on things - will it snag any of your clothes or scratch your skin if you wear it around your neck? Is it distracting for your work (depends on what you do for a living). Is it a risk? (E.g. if you are around young children who can reach it & end up putting it into their mouth). 

 

Is it something you can store away in a safety deposit box or at home ? Are you able to shop for a less expensive ring that you would be happy to wear in its place & wear the original one for special occasions? 

 

 

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Janus the Fox

I find I can’t wear jewellery at all or for very long.  It’s a sensory sensitivity thing and nothing to do with a lack of commitment, or as some my put it ‘I’m not that much of a girl if I don’t want to wear jewellery’.  We can’t really afford anything and at the most, we have a shared dragon heart to symbolise our spiritual connection, plus it was cheap.

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uhtred

I think as long as you explain that its a comfort issue, its completely fine.   Both my wife and I remove our wedding rings when we are doing something where they might get in the way.     The suggestion above of wearing it on a chain is great.

 

If you really don't like the ring, you can even tell him that - being clear that you love the engagement, just not the ring.

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Definitely talk about it, or it will bug you forever. Personally, I can't wear anything with a stone that sticks out, because it catches on things and gets in the way. I have a ring with an amber inlay (so it's completely flat, no sticking out part) and that's comfortable for me. Ring size is also important for comfort. You can go to a jeweler and they'll find out your size.

 

I can pass on some helpful advice I've gotten for tactfully having difficult conversations in general:

 

1. Start with something positive/loving: what you appreciate about him / what he did. ("I love that you...." like what you said above.)

2. Tell him about the problem and why it's a problem. (I'm sure he won't be upset when he understands that.)

3. Offer some alternative(s). But make sure you're clear about what you would/wouldn't be genuinely happy with. ("How about if ....... instead?")

4. State what outcome you are hoping for. (could be, "I was really happy when you proposed and gave me the ring, so I want to find a comfortable way to wear it." OR "The proposal made me so happy, and I'd love to have a symbol of our engagement to wear, I just can't wear a ring." Or whatever it is you ultimately want to get out of this discussion. Maybe just "You made me so happy, and I want to make you as happy as you made me.") 

 

It may help to write it down first, just so you have it all sorted out in your mind. And before you can have that conversation, first you'll need to decide whether you'd be happy wearing this ring on a chain, or if you'd want a different ring on a chain (if so, what kind?), or have a pendant instead, or something else. If you don't want to wear any jewelry at all, then try to think of some alternative to jewelry OR just tell him that you'd like to find some alternative but don't know what, and then you can brainstorm together. 

 

While you're talking about the engagement ring, that would also be a good time to talk about what you want for a wedding ring (simple wedding band? some other kind of ring? something other than a ring?) 

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beta_moon

Honestly, you might just have to talk to him about it. I think half the reason (or more) that people even still offer them is expectation. My husband only proposed properly with a ring because heteronormativity is all he knew. I was never a jewelry person, but I wore it at first and later my wedding ring, too. Eventually, I started wearing them less to the point of not at all. My husband was a bit disappointed at first, but he eventually accepted that I just don't like wearing rings. It's not because I don't want people to know that I'm married or any other reason that he originally thought. I just don't like rings. And that's okay. Engagement/wedding rings are a cultural expectation not a requirement. Perhaps your fiance, like my husband, has just never thought of not having a ring as an option and might be open to it if you explain. 

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