- 9 years ago
- Wedding: September 2011
As someone whose initial post was apparently so unhelpful as to be actively offensive, you may wish to skip this comment.
OP, for future posts, you may want to provide more info up front if you don’t want us to misunderstand your situation. There have been many details that have come out in your subsequent comments that alter the way I view your initial post. I’m assuming this is the case for many others that you felt wrongfully attacked by. We were just going off of the info you provided, which from where I’m sitting painted the situation in a very different light than what I get from reading your later posts. To be honest (and this may be largely because it’s late and I’ve had a long, emotional day), it really rubs me the wrong way that I took the time to read and respond to the situation you provided, offered what I thought were provocative and productive questions/comments, and then got not only ignored but also insulted by you because you did not agree with my assessment. It’s 100% fine that you feel I was off base. Now that I have more info, I realize that I probably was. But it doesn’t feel great to be scolded for trying to help you based on the limited info that you yourself provided intiially.
Anyway, that aside, I’m having trouble discerning what sort of advice you’re looking for…? From your last pre-ring photo (beautiful ring, btw!), it sounds like you are actually really looking for a way to convince him to give this special ring to you explicitly as an engagement ring, without forcing him to abandon his beliefs. Is that the case? If so, then it would be useful to know more details about what exactly his objections are–what is the history of the subjugation of women in his culture, how does the ring factor into that, etc. How flexible is he in his beliefs? Do you wish to actually change his mind on this issue, or is this more of a venting post? What would an ideal situation look like to you?
It’s taken me a long time to come around to this, but I personally hold the belief that it is sometimes better to change traditions from within–to reclaim traditions that may have been exploitative or oppressive and turn them into something that is inclusive and equalizing–than to abandon them altogether. That’s why my husband and I got married, actually, so that we could reimagine the union according to our values and ideals.
My personal belief is that while symbols hold power, they are also constantly evolving, like language. We actually give them more power if we refuse to see them as changing things. Ultimately, it is what you do with those symbols that will impact how these symbols are understood by future generations. Who knows, maybe you and your fiance would be better able to pave the way for future generations of more equal, less oppressive partnerships by embracing the symbols of this culture and then redefining them in your own way, than you might be by shirking the symbols altogether.
But again, I have no idea if any of that applies to you or your situation because I don’t really know what you want.