Post # 1
Hi everyone. i posted this question before but I dont think it was too appropriate for that thread. Anyway, i am really fascinated with the ”wedding world” and cultural practices and customs. I love meaningful traditions (emphasis on the ‘meaningful’). One custom I do not get is engagement rings. What is the purpose of them? I always understood that it was for the man to get for the woman as a sign of the pledge to get married in the future – but why is it necessary? Also, nowadays many brides pick their rings out and may even pay for part or all of it. I seem to be one of very few women who is not interested in an engagement ring (my mom never had one, neither of my grandmothers). Also why is an engagement ring for the woman only? Isnt the man also engaged? What if the woman asks the man – should she present him with a ring to wear?
Anyway I posted the question because I would really like to hear from others what this tradition symbolizes to them. Am I any less engaged for not having a ring?
Thanks for any replies 🙂
Post # 3
I think the wedding ring is the symbol of the marriage and the e-ring is the symbol of me wanting some bling on my finger!!!
Post # 4
LOL! thanks for the reply. 🙂
Post # 5
Each country has a different tradition. In the UK a woman may propose to a man on leap day. Some countries the man does receive an egagement ring as well. I love the tradition of it and like that it’s modifying as time changes.
Post # 7
Thats cool, but what exactly does it symbolize? I think its a Dutch tradition (not sure) but on my mother’s side of the family the engaged couple buys only one set of rings – the wedding ring – which is worn (I think) on the other hand until the marriage ceremony. That way both people wear a ring during the engagement and there is no added expense.
Post # 8
I’ve heard that your ring ringer has a vein that goes straight to your heart so that’s why the ring is on that specific finger. I find them to be romantic, but I’m very old fashioned. Fiance picked and paid for it all by himself and to me it’s a sign of commitment. That he found it important enough to get me the ring of my dreams and to get down on one knee and profess his love for me and ask me to be his wife. I can’t look at my ring and not think of him. I would personally never propose to my guy and wouldn’t have him wearing a e ring either. He doesn’t wear an jewelery so just a wedding band will be an adjustment to him. I think e rings are geared towards the female sex, it’s a way to get a piece of bling but for a specific reason. My Fiance has never pulled me into a jewelery store to shop and I think that’s the norm for most guys. They just don’t need the proposal and the ring, they just need us to say yes. So in a way it’s sexist but we are different. I like to say we’re both fruits but one is an apple and the other is an orange. Sometimes we just need different things.
Post # 9
This is a really great but loaded question. I live in the US and I see an engagement ring mean so many things for so many people. For some, it is a promise to the future. For others, it is something beautiful and shiny on their finger. For others still, it is a status symbol recognized by general society. It could be a combination of the above, or something entirely different.
The historical meaning of an engagement ring can be argued as well. Is it the diamond industry making profit? Is it a more recent/cultural spin on the idea of a dowry or payment to the bride’s family?
These ideas are all arguable and interesting to ponder. For me, my ring symbolizes the future my Fiance and I have together and our intentions as a couple. Our committment is mutual so my wearing the ring is a response to Fiance gifting me the ring. And it’s pretty, too (which doesn’t hurt).
Post # 10
I always think of them as a token of a promise for the future.
And sparkly too!
Post # 11
The only symbolism for me is that men know I’m no longer available. Honestly though, that’s a laugh and a half because I think I’ve been hit on MORE as fiance than I have been as a girlfriend.
But I love the fact that it means he is going to marry me and I wouldn’t want to go without, even if it was just a piece of string. That being said, Fiance doesn’t have a ring, doesn’t really wnat a ring and I don’t care too much if he wears his wedding band. I think a lot of that is because my dad never wore a wedding band and he still has a great, loving realtionship with my mom.
Post # 12
the concept of a diamond having to be the angment ring is a 20th century phenomena (mainly started by the debeers coporations in the 40’s withh their tag line… “a diamond is forever”) Before that rings were still given but not necessarly a diamond. SOmetimes it wasnt even a ring.. but some sort of trinket exchaged to symbolize love.
While i love my diamond ring i would have been jus as happy with something different.
Post # 13
Thanks! Would you have been very disapointed if he hadnt bought the ring? Would you still get married if you didnt have one? I do love engagment stories and the romance of it all and I do understand how a meaningful gift is both romantic and endearing (but does it have to be expensive?) Thanks a lot for your response.
Post # 14
Honestly I think the fact that he spend a lot of time and money on something for me was symbolic. He did a lot of research, talked to people about it, etc. I know that the ring is symbolic no matter what the price is, but I feel like that sacrifice (and the amount that constitutes “sacrifice” is different for everyone) shows a level of commitment.
Post # 15
My dad doesnt wear a wedding ring either (though he did have one for his wedding). It bugs me though.
Post # 16
@DClare: I DID get an engagement ring for FI! I told him that if I was wearing one, he should too! It’s nothing fancy, just a silver ring we picked up at the Ren Faire that has our names hand hammered on it.