Post # 1
When FI and I met he was not in a very good place financially. We worked for a great company who just doesn’t believe in paying particularly great wages. He’d run into some debt issues when he was younger and was still paying them off. He also had a mountain of student loans that ate up his paychecks. He proposed with a sweet little ring that I think cost around $50.
Soon after he proposed I started getting terrible rashes on my left hand around the ring. I have terribly sensitive skin (seriously, I can’t even get my eyebrows waxed anymore, threading is my friend and even then I break out) and I think the ring had a lot of nickel in it. I asked him if he’d mind if I bought a different ring with my own money and he could pay me back if and when he felt comfortable. We went to Walmart and picked out a $400 ring that wouldn’t be too hard for him to cover when he got back on his feet.
Since then, we’ve moved across country and he’s struggled to find steady work. He had a part time job at a pet store for a few months, but they lost their lease and he’s been out of work for a few weeks again (he has an interview tomorrow, yay!). I’m not concerned about him paying me back, that was more of just a loose agreement and the money will all be ours soon anyway. A few months ago, my mother came across an old necklace of hers and she offered it to me to have made into something else, whatever I wanted. I happened to mention to her on the phone today that as much as I love my ring, I am sometimes self-conscious of the six small stones in the center, and would prefer one stone. She, again, offered her necklace, though not to replace just one stone, but to replace my ring entirely. I don’t have a picture of the necklace and I haven’t seen it in awhile, but I would be able to do whatever I want with it.
I don’t want to upset FI by upgrading again even before our wedding, but technically I bought this ring with my own money. When he was first looking for rings I’d suggested he talk to our parents and see if there was an heirloom or anything that would save him money, but he insisted on doing the entire process on his own. His feelings were hurt when I asked to buy a different ring before and I don’t want to go through that again, but I would prefer something a little nicer.
Post # 3
@luluvohn: Maybe you can word it in a way that shows how important it would be to you to have this heirloom as part of your engagement ring. You know, that it is very special to you?? I think that could go over pretty well.
Post # 4
Maybe also throw in that it’s your ‘something old into something new’ gift from your mom for sentimental value.
ETA – it’s sweet that you’re conscious of your guy’s feelings on the matter! men can be particularly sensitive about money and things, so you’re wise to tread carefully without hurting him.
Post # 5
@luluvohn: I would present it to him with great enthusiasm as this wonderful stroke of luck- “Honey! My mom wants to give me her necklace to make a ring- now we’ll have an heirloom ring that I’m not allergic to, that we can pass down to our kids someday, and we don’t have to worry about paying off the one from walmart that you didn’t like in the first place! Let’s sell it and add that money back to our savings! I’m so excited, I feel like this brings us one step closer to our stable future together.”
Don’t focus on the “nicer” aspect, focus on the sentimental and financially responsible aspects of this. Which are really big! I would love to have had an heirloom ring, for both reasons.
Post # 7
- Wedding: April 2013 - A court...
I agree with pp, if you wanted to you could sell your second one for extra $$ (or maybe have the stones in your new rings halo/ band?) & then you’d have an heirloom (Kinda)! 🙂 But he was understanding the first time I’m assuming, so hopefully he’s okay with is as we’ll!
Post # 8
If you’re super sensitive to nickle, you might want to stay away from white gold, unless it’s actual, honest to goodness nickle-free white gold.
Post # 9
@JoCoJenn: Yeah, my FI can get pretty sensitive, and I know he’s been struggling with not making as much money as he thought he would. If it were honestly just any other ring I’d bought for myself I wouldn’t worry so much about upgrading it, but I do feel like this is my engagement ring even though it isn’t the one he picked out.
@Bubblesmcgee: I like this idea a lot. It’s also the most practical thing to do with my mom’s necklace. I’m not a RHR kind of girl (getting used to wearing my engagement ring took awhile) and we don’t really have the kind of social calendar that would call for drop earrings or restyling the necklace to my taste. I have a few nice pieces that I break out for friends’ weddings, but costume jewelry serves me just fine in my daily life.
Post # 10
You could just bring it up gently that your mom is giving you a nice piece of jewelry that you can do whatever you want with….and that you were thinking it would make a nice e-ring…see what he says. Really..it’s all in how you say it. If you sense he’s hurt or doesn’t like the idea of doing it….then I guess you drop it for now. Some guys get really strange when it comes to an e-ring, however, since he didn’t technically buy the one you have now, I don’t know how that could bother him.
Good luck!! Let us know what you decide and how it works out!!
Post # 11
@Bubblesmcgee: yes….what you said!! 🙂
Post # 12
@Bubblesmcgee: +1 that’s a great way to spin it.