- 6 years ago
- Wedding: August 2012
[Been lurking for awhile. Forgive me for being such a space-hog on my first post, but it’s complicated.]
The Boyfriend has told me he’s saving for a very modestly-priced e-ring (he’s in the process of digging himself out of the financial hole he got thrown into a few years ago; almost in the clear now). It will take a couple of months, after which we will be plannning a small and intimate, lowcost wedding ASAP (he actually said, “How soon after I propose can we get married?”).
I waited 39 years to find a man worth even a long-term relationship and I am thrilled to be in this place, but here’s the catch: I come from a religious and family tradition that historically doesn’t wear jewelry (it’s changing somewhat). It’s not so much a matter of morality as the principle that it is better to adorn the character before the body, and that money for something as “useless” as a ring is better spent on things that make the world a better place. So, I never drooled over engagement rings or even imagined I’d ever receive one (or even get married at all, haha).
In this economy in California (and by nature) I am very focused on saving, and am happiest and most-relaxed when I have a solid cushion against emergency. I’d be much happier to know he had the cost of the ring saved for emergencies than spent on my finger.
Add to it the fact that I am much better at giving than receiving, and this is becoming a real internal battle. If it were up to me, I’d say let’s make this engagement official and plan on a wedding in three months. Instead, we’re delaying this to give him time to save up for something I could do without, and it’s driving me crazy!
I asked him why an e-ring was important to him and he said something beautiful about wanting something that would show the world that he loves me. It brought tears to my eyes, and I finally understood why it mattered to him.
I also realize he probably wants something people will ooh and ahh over and that considering the financial problems he has overcome, he really wants the ego boost of being able to give me something beautiful. In other words, I can’t just say, “Give me a tiny little ring that costs a couple hundred” because it will just look cheap and reflect badly on him. I suggested a ruby (my birthstone) in hopes that it would allow him to find something beautiful in his price range, and thanks to the Boards I discovered Moissonite this morning and will tell him–awesome!).
But I’m still having problems with the idea of something that feels so ostentatious on my finger. I work in the nonprofit field and am deeply aware of those who have harder lives than me or greater need. The idea of ANYONE spending even $500 on a chunk of minerals for me in that context just does not compute.
Maybe it’s a self-esteem issue?–I have a hard time with people doing nice things to/for me. Even telling “the world” about our relationship was scary for me; I had spent so much of my life fiercely single and independent that at first I didn’t even know how to “be a couple” and the idea of me being loved by a man was foreign even though I knew 100% that it was true–I felt like I was integrating something completely new into my whole self-image.
I don’t know if this is the kind of thing to post here or not… I just know that I need to balance his needs/desires with mine… but I don’t know how and I can’t tell if I’m losing my mind over this.
You Bees are awesome, and I hope this can make more sense to you than it does to me!