Post # 1
Hi all, I’m new here and just wanted to get some fresh opinions!
My situation is- I’ve been with my bf 5 years and we live together. We have a good relationship and he has told me many times he can’t wait to marry me, he definitely wants to spend his life with me and if he had the money for a ring, he’d propose tomorrow.
Right now, he is working full time and studying part time, and we are saving to put a deposit on a house. He’s had some health issues last year which were costly, and money just seems to be a source of anxiety for him. We have enough money to live how we want and save, but for him money seems to be something that stresses him out.
We have talked about getting engaged in the next year or so. I’ve been thinking of offering to contribute towards the cost of the ring. Is this something that guys would consider and be acceptable?
I also am thinking of dropping some hints about the types of ring I would like. The main concern I have, is that he tends to want to go for the biggest and best. I’m a little worried that he is working himself into a state trying to afford a huge, perfect diamond with amazing specs. I’m happy with something nice but simple!
I’m of the opinion that in a marriage we share finances and so in my mind, me paying for part of the ring and choosing it, is part of that financial relationship anyway (if that makes sense) he is kind of traditional, romantic and a proud person. I know his parents and grandparents are hassling him about it too.
We’ve talked about it a little and he usually makes fun of me and tells me to pipe down and makes jokes that in a few years he will be going to some diamond sales!
What do other bees think?
Post # 2
Welcome to the bee!
How old are you two? You’ve been together quite a while so I’m just curious.
Please don’t buy a house with him until you at least have a ring on your finger and a wedding date.
It is completely acceptable and a great idea to offer to contribute towards the ring and you’re right about splitting expenses as a married couple. See what he says to that. He may be proud, but this is not a situation that is just up to him- it’s your future too! Don’t let him bullshit you with “you need the biggest bestest most amazingest ring in the world.” He should care about what YOU want for the ring- you will be wearing it after all! Ignoring what you actually want and insisting on a super expensive ring can be a sign of stalling.
I may be reading into things but I also find it a little concerning that he jokes about telling you to “pipe down” and that he will be looking for diamonds in “a few years”?! I’d get a firm timeline out of him and hold him to it.
And if he still tries to BS you, tell him to “pipe down” with the jokes and if he claims he’d get a ring tomorrow then maybe he should get on that. It’s been 5 years after all.
Post # 3
Youve been dating 5 years and the closest you’ve come or are thinking of going is a few marriage jokes and hints on what kind of ring you want? You really need to pull up your big girl pants and get on with the adulting. This is not a mystery for you to solve, he already has the answers.
Ask him. Why aren’t we engaged, have you thought about marriage with me, (talking about a future marriage DOES NOT count, people can do that with anyone), what is keeping you from asking me, when is this happening, and I will not buy a home with a man I’m not engaged to.
Get firm answers, don’t bring it up and waffle when it gets uncomfortable. Don’t probe then give him a few weeks to think about it once he says a few words you want to hear. Value yourself.
Post # 4
Yes, certainly paying for part of your ring is a reasonable option, I see no problems, unless he feels his manhood is somehow on the line. Or unless you are buying it because that’s the only way you think you’ll get an engagement ring.
Wanting to buy the biggest and the best when it is clearly appparent he can’t is not a good sign, particularly when you have made it clear you are not wanting the biggest and the best . Either he doesn’t care what you want , or it is the old stalling tactic we see so often on this board . ” The ring you deseve darling that’s the only one I will buy. Someday…… ”
and this ” he usually makes fun of me and tells me to pipe down and makes jokes that in a few years he will be going to some diamond sales! kind of points to the latter . Plus ‘pipe down’ is not phrase to be used to a peer/equal.
Time to take a little control back OP , you need to know if this is the style of relationnship you want. It’s 5 years in after all. Oh, and as supernurse above says , be very wary of buying a house with him given this level of (non) committment.
Post # 5
We are in our early thirties. He is recovering from very serious health issues- he was unable to work for a year last year and has had many surgeries- so this is the first time we have seriously thought about marriage- although I think a couples timeline and decision to make such a choice is personal and not up for judgement. Money is a thing, and I know for a fact that is the barrier, which is why I thought offering to contribute could be an option.
As for him joking around- they are jokes- he is deliberately saying “a couple of years” because that is clearly unreasonable- thats just our sense of humour and we get it. In fact, he is an extremely respectful and kind person.
As for my “big girl pants”- I’ve certainly got those and they got me through some tough times- was just looking for some non judgemental constructive advice. This is an exciting time for us- he is well and does want to get engaged in the next year.
Post # 6
I would stop making jokes or dropping hints and have a sit down conversation about where you’re both at. If he presses money as the issue you could offer to chip in for the ring or set your expectations lower with an upgrade in mind a few years down the road. My Fiance was relieved I wanted to chat about it instead of some vague surprise and he was just supposed to read my mind about what I wanted? It’s both your future’s together it’s not a taboo subject to plan it with each other instead of you wishing and hinting.
Post # 7
I’m kinda surprised that after five years and his serious health issues and surgeries last year that this is the first time either of you have even started discussing marriage. Usually when people have serious health issues they realize just how short life is…and you’d think he would have thought about wanting you to be able to make medical decisions on his behalf if he were to become incapable of making decisions and you’d think he’d want you to have all the benefits and security that marriage entails as his wife should he become gravely ill with his medical issues. Although I’m not sure of the legalities of marriage where you live…
And if he wants to get married so badly and is short on cash, he needs to lower his expectations on the ring and get something he can afford in the next few months. You shouldn’t be waiting another year because of a piece of jewelry. It’s not like you guys are early twenties. And you can always upgrade the ring later. I think if you bring this to his attention, you will quickly figure out whether he’s serious or not.
And I guess if you find it funny that he tells you to back off of talking about your own future, then so be it. That’s just not my sense of humor and my SO knows better than to even joke about telling me to be quiet about our mutual future. It doesn’t sound like you guys have had many concrete, open discussions about marriage so it just seems weird to beat around the bush by joking about it. That would make me feel insecure about his intentions. But to each their own…
Post # 8
Thanks for the response! So when he got home from work, we went for a swim and had a great talk about it. He has assured me that there is something happening behind the scenes with ring shopping, and the reason he’s been evasive with jokes is because he wants it to be a surprise. My mum and best friend are involved in the ring design and he said he finances are under control. He’s given me a 6 month time frame and said theres surprises in store! I’m excited- luckily I’m back at work next week which will get my mind off it! I’m really happy with what he said, I just needed the reassurance that we were still on the same page.
Post # 9
Yes, when something awful happens your perspective changes, and for us it has made us much stronger as a couple. In my initial post I did say that we had discussed marriage and our future so not sure where you’ve got the notion that we’ve “never even started discussing marriage.” As for legalities and our affairs, we’ve had that sorted- and for me I’m happy for our future and marriage to be based on love, not because he had an illness- but thats just me.
I’m not sure if you are implying we should already be married when you’ve commented “it’s not like we’re in our early twenties…,” but I’m happy we met when we did, we’ve had an amazing journey together and I wouldn’t change the way I spent my early twenties.
I was asking for feedback, yes, but I’m a little taken aback by the condescending and judgemental tone and the age shaming. And yes- each to their own is right- we love stirring each other and joking around- but we can talk about the bigger issues too. I was just looking for a fresh point of view and other peoples thoughts about offering to contribute to the cost.
Post # 10
I think it’s worth discussing the option of you contributing, it’s all going to be combined finances one day anyway. I would have done the same but we ended up going for a low cost option anyway. I did buy my own wedding ring but by then we had joint accounts.
Post # 11
I would just sit down and have a conversation about it. You can offer to contribute, but he may not accept it (my fiance didn’t). I also made it very clear that I wasn’t looking for a diamond, and that I wanted something that was affordable. I was actually the one that set the budget for my ring. We designed it together, but when I stated what I wanted to spend, my fiance said he was fine paying more than that. I had done my research and said, no, we should be able to get what I want within that price range. I think it took some of the pressure off of him to know that I would be so much happier with what I got than with a super expensive diamond that I just didn’t like.
In that same conversation we also talked about timelines, what type of wedding we wanted, etc. It was all laid out and decieded within about 20 min to a half an hour. And he made an appointment that night with our jeweler for later that week. Just sit down and talk about it. Tell him that you know he’s been through a lot, but this is the timeline that you were thinking, and ask him what his is. (My fiance and I had different timelines on our wedding. I wanted late spring, he wanted early fall, we compromised on summer, and then the venue only had March open so we went with none of them and took what they had!). See how far off you are and see if you can compromise. My fiance also thought that if you wanted a fall 2019 wedding, he could propose that summer and book everything/plan the wedding in like 3mos. Once I explained how it actually worked, he was pretty shocked and noticed that yeah, a lot of things book up rather quickly! The band we really wanted was already booked as was our first choice on a couple other things!
Bottom line: talk to him. Offer to contribute for the ring and explain to him what you want! If it helps, do some research before hand and see about how much the ring you want will be. So you can give him an idea. (For example he only needs to save $3k vs $10k or whatever you find)
Post # 12
missexcited1985 : I think you two need to stop beating around the bush by joking around about it and have a series of actual serious discussions about what your 5 year plan looks like and how you’re going to get there.
The ring is just a drop in the bucket in terms of what it costs to get married if you want to have a wedding along with it. If you’re happy to do something small and private, that’s a different story.
If money is a major challenge right now, I think you need to figure out what your priorities are as a couple and how you can reach your shared goals together. If buying a house is a higher priority than a wedding, then work toward that first. If having a wedding is the priority, start saving for that and figure out a reasonable budget. It doesn’t matter what you do first or how you get there – what matters is that you make these decisions together, fully informed, and both of you are happy and comfortable with the various timelines you set.
Post # 13
No need to get defensive OP. I was referring to what you yourself said in your update in regards to his health issues “so this is the first time we have seriously thought about marriage.”
And there’s no age shaming in my pointing out that you’re not in your early twenties. You’re not. That’s a fact. That’s just a point I made because I was taken aback at how long you had been together where there was just joking around about marriage, which is something you seem to really want, and he was giving the impression he was holding back because of wanting an expensive ring.
Keep in mind that we only can go off the info you provide. And if you don’t like the advice, just take it with a grain of salt. But you opened yourself up to feedback so you got it. Sorry if it’s not sugar coated.
Your update is much better though. I’m glad you guys have actually communicated about it and he sounds like he’s stepping up. That’s progress
Post # 14
He declined my offer of contributing. I’m really just happy to know he’s thinking about it and its on the cards.
When we do have a wedding, we will have something reasonably small/modest.
Money isn’t such a big issue, I don’t know why he gets so stressed about it- he is hung up on his lost earnings when he couldn’t work and it seems like a pride thing. We both have good jobs. Its quite hard to get into the housing market where we live and he just really worries about it.
neverbeenstungbee : thanks for your response. I just didn’t get the relevance of us not being in our early twenties- theres not a deadline. Over the last 5 years we weren’t ready for getting engaged, now we are ready to be thinking about it.
I was really surprised to know how far into getting a ring he actually is! He has a very romantic streak- some of his friends have gone to him for advice about their proposals and he comes up with awesome ideas. I can just relax and let it go 🙂
Post # 15
Well that’s good. I think this thread made me remember that everyone’s relationship progresses at different rates and it sounds like everything is going pretty well for you two. I do apologize if it came off as harsh.
Please update when he proposes! And feel free to post a ring pic too