- 1 year ago
Even stating that in the subject line was painful.
My wonderful fiance and I just got engaged 2 weeks ago, and he proposed while we were away on vacation with his father’s side of the family. His mother passed away rather suddenly while he was in college, and he proposed to me with her ring. I never got to meet her. My fiance was very close to his mother, and has cried about her a few times in front of me. She was beloved, and is dearly missed by his family, and it was a huge honor that he would propose to me with her ring. Immediately after he proposed to me, he said “if you want something else we can talk about it” but he’d just proposed and wanted to celebrate the moment rather than dampen it by saying anything further about the ring itself. Afterwards, we made the announcement to his family in person, and his father cried when he saw me wearing the ring. While we were still on vacation, he shared our news with people we met and said “the ring is keeping my mom’s memory alive”. He also said something in private to me about having “shoes to fill” – uncomfortable with that.
Over the past few weeks, I’ve had a few moments where I thought “I can learn to love this ring”, but more so I’ve had difficult feelings about it.
The ring is a high-set simple solitaire diamond on a plain yellow gold band. It’s objectively pretty, I suppose, but it’s very old fashioned and not my style. I’m noticing myself trying to “explain” the ring every time someone’s asks to see it – I say it belonged to his mother and I’m very touched by the sentiment. However, it doesn’t feel like it belongs to me. No changes were made to it. He didn’t even bother to find out if it was my size, he just got the ring from his father and hoped it would fit, and it just happened to fit perfectly. He never asked me what I’d like.
On a separate, but equally important note, I’m having personal issues with the sentiment. I am a hospice therapist, and much of what I do on a daily basis is work to preserve the memory of those who are in the dying process. I don’t mean to sound like I feel bad for myself, but I’ve been struggling a lot lately with the grief that I carry around for so many other people, and I’m at the point where I’d like to change careers. I want to shift my own personal focus to a career where I can work towards a more hopeful future, and I want to feel that way about my ring about about my future with him as well. In a way, this ring symbolizes grief to me, and it brings me to tears when I think about it.
Long story short, I want my heirloom ring to feel unique to me and it doesn’t. I want my heirloom ring to symbolize hope, but instead it symbolizes sadness.
Ideally, I’d like to keep the diamond but reset the ring to make it into something that I can call my own and feel authentic. A couple girlfriends have advised me to bring up this idea with my fiance, and assured me that it’s okay to talk about it with him. While I think he will understand, I don’t want to cause him or his father any pain. I feel like his mother must be rolling around in her grave right now because of how ungrateful I must appear to be.
I’m not 100% sure I’ll go through with the conversation. Please please please send your thoughts on this. What would you do in this scenario?
THANK YOU so much in advance for your help!!