Post # 1
My SO and I are moving towards becoming engaged, and we have several family rings to choose from. My mother had two wedding sets (she got an upgrade!) and his mom has his great aunt’s ring, which I have never seen. His mom really wants me to see the ring before he proposes so we can decide if we want to use it; she wants to make sure I like it, and is a-ok with us not using it if I don’t. But what if I really don’t like it!? I don’t want to offend anybody. He swears up and down that his mom won’t care, and that she has no sentimental attachment. I know her and she is a very practical woman, so I can believe that, but I think I would still feel horrible if I saw it and said “no thanks.” Even if she understood, doesn’t that still seem rude? I guess my plan is that if I like it more than my mom’s rings, to use it, but if I don’t to say I’d prefer to have something of my mom’s for sentimental reasons. The only problem is I told SO a long time ago that her rings weren’t really to my taste… So he’ll at least know that it meant I disliked his family heirloom. I know his mom doesn’t want me to feel obligated to wear a ring I don’t like, but I also don’t want to turn up my nose at her generous offer and say I don’t like a cherished heirloom!
And please don’t tell me I should be grateful for whatever I get; I know that I am incredibly blessed to have THREE rings to choose from within our families, and it means so much to me that we can get engaged without worrying about paying for an expensive ring, etc… I mostly just want to know if anyone else has been in this situation and how they dealt with it.
Post # 4
@MadameX: what about using the compnents of the ring to make a new ring?
Post # 5
Could you have the diamond re-set into something that works for you?
Post # 6
No pictures! She wants me to come see it in person… Like, today. We live about five minutes away so there’s no great reason to ask for pictures instead! Using components may be feasible but I may feel weird about breaking up an antique; it is my understanding the ring is fairly old, possibly 20’s-40’s era. Depending on how things go that could be a great solution, though! I’m mostly worried about hurting feelings or insulting an heirloom. 🙁
Post # 7
Go see it!if you don’t like it, use components of your mother’s sets?
Post # 8
You could go to see it and if you don’t like it you could tell her that you had already decided to have something from your mum re-set. From what you say, she sounds like a practical and down-to-earth woman, so I don’t think you should be as afraid of offending her as you are. Of course you should not say that the ring is hideous and that you wouldn’t want to be within 10 feet of it ever again, but you can be gracious and thank her and tell her a white lie and I think she will be fine.
Post # 9
If she says it doesn’t bother her if you don’t use it, why don’t you believe her? If someone told me that, and you even said she’s very practical, then I think there isn’t any problem just telling the truth if its not your taste. Say its not your taste/style. Easy! I think you are making this a lot harder than it has to be and needlessly worrying yourself.
Personally in our family e-rings are passed down to be made into other jewelry or worn as RHR – not used again as e-rings. I think most women understand wanted a e-ring that is yours and yours alone – and having one that fits your style.
Post # 10
My ring is actually an heirloom from my FI’s great aunt that he got through his mother as well! I had a sneaking suspicion that the ring would be an heirloom from his side of the family, and I had elaborate strategy sessions with myself, in my head, about what I would do if I hated it. Why don’t you say something like, “FMIL, although the ring is beautiful, it is not my style. Even though it won’t work for me, I am so honored by your willingness to share a family heirloom with me, and I feel so lucky to be a part of your family, no matter what ring I end up wearing.”Acknowledge her very sweet gesture, and let her know that it’s nothing personal!
You are so lucky to get to see the ring first. Mine is from the same era (probably 1920s), and I can say that rings from the 20s-40s are usually GORGEOUS. I was lucky enough that my ring literally checks off every little thing I had on my mental ring wish list, but I was hoping for an antique from that era.
Post # 11
@MadameX: What I would do is tell her you’ve already been offered and decided to use your own mother’s ring, but sure, you’d love to see her ring as well. That way, if you don’t like it, she didn’t expect you to take it. But if you DO like it you can “change your mind” because hers is so beautiful and use your mom’s for a RHR or whatever.
Post # 12
I know I am probably making this more complicated than it needs to be, and that she just wants me to have a ring that I like, but I think the sentiment of the offer is so wholly sweet that I don’t want to ruin that by saying it’s not the ring for me… I guess I just mean it would be lovely to accept and I want the most tactful way of declining in my back pocket before I see it, just in case, and so if anybody has any suggestions…! And thank you all for the different suggestions. @Pepperwoodsy: , I really like your wording for politely declining, I may memorize this as my “just in case” phrase!