The Issue of the Ring

Last week while I was taking my amazing break (thank you to my guest bloggers) there was a video with a picture going around about a sale that Kay Jeweler’s was having for a ring that cost $24.99. The video that was accompanying the photo said that apparently everybody on this gentleman’s timeline had gotten engaged with this particular ring that cost $24.99. I’ve attached a picture of the ring for you to see.

The Issue

Whether or not a woman should accept a $25.00 engagement ring. If the woman did accept it, she should just be happy that someone wanted to marry her. If she wouldn’t accept it, she was called everything under the sun including: a gold digger, hoe, shallow, miserable, bitter, will never have a man and can’t get a man…all because she refused to accept a $25 engagement ring.

My Take

Mr. C and I had a lengthy discussion about this the other night and it got kinda heated. Primarily because I simply told him that I wouldn’t accept a $25.00 engagement ring. I explained to him that an engagement ring symbolized a man’s commitment and promise to marry you. A man marries for particular reasons: not wanting to die alone, procreation, increased wealth, financial benefits (think tax breaks), love and happiness.

That being said, does a man believe that is worth $25.00. If that is the best that he can do, then why is he marrying you? I’m in my 40’s and I’m a firm believer that we don’t get in relationships to struggle and try to build up people in our 40’s. A man should be built up by the time he’s 40. Can he have setbacks? Absolutely, anyone can, but I’m not dating someone in a broke stage. Get yourself to a better stage where you can afford to date me.

That being said, in the past engagement rings were given as a symbol of a future promise to the world that the woman was betrothed to another man. He put a ring on it. He removed her from the proverbial market. She was his. He was hers.

Fast forward to today’s standard and the ring debate is out of control. Engagement rings are optional for some and required for others. However, if you should choose to marry a woman and propose with an engagement ring, wouldn’t it ring true that you would know the woman that you are marrying? That you know her taste. You know what she would love.

When I first started dating Mr. C a couple of years ago, I sent him a picture of the ring that I had designed for my next engagement. Was it forward? Probably. But, I did it with a purpose. The purpose was to show him my expected standard of the promise of marriage.

Here’s what the ring looked like:

Ring 1

Ring 2

The price tag was $14,358.51. Mr. C was floored. I laughed and said that we could go to the Diamond District in NYC and get it made for about $8,500. He didn’t say anything. Fast forward to earlier this year and he asked me “Do you think it’s fair that I spend $8,500 on an engagement ring and I have college tuition to pay for my son?” I responded “You could finance it.” LOL.

But, I was serious. Later this year we had a genuine conversation and he stated that he wasn’t going to spend $8,500 on the ring. He gave me a number and we haggled over the price and I think we settled into a good number. I honestly can’t remember. It really doesn’t matter because we have time.

It’s not the cost of the ring in our case. It’s the expectation that you will marry me and I told him that I was fine with a diamond band and no engagement ring. Been there done that. But, a ring whether an engagement ring or band is the promise of his commitment to provide for me and our family. If he can’t afford to provide, then why should we marry?

Now, before you think that I’m a gold digger understand that love doesn’t pay the bills. Tell me what bill you can pay with love. Being broke isn’t cute. I’m not about struggle love or poverty penis. Love is an emotion and not a tangible piece of currency.  I like this quote by Bougie Black Girl on her FaceBook page:

Love doesn’t pay for diapers
Love doesn’t pay for gas
Love doesn’t pay the rent or mortgage
Love doesn’t buy food
Love doesn’t put clothes on a child’s back.
Love doesn’t keep your lights on.
Love doesn’t pay for childcare.
Love doesn’t pay for doctor visits
Love doesn’t fix a flat tire or repair an engine.
Money does.
Love brings people together. Money makes sure a marital union is financially secure. Money creates a legacy and passes down multi-generational wealth. Stop demanding Black women to settle when Black men and everyone else won’t.

We need to stop believing that we can’t have expectations for better. My ex-husband and I were young and in our 20’s when we got married. He still got me an engagement ring that cost $2,500 and he was only making $35,000 at the time. That was .07% of his annual salary before take home. We were poor. We were young. However, he was determined to get me the ring that he knew that I loved.

So, if he could do that in our 20’s why would it be acceptable for someone to think a woman should be happy with a $25 engagement ring. I spend more than $25.00 to fill up my gas tank. Many of us are walking around with shoes that cost more than $25.00. If you can spend more than $25.00 to get into a club, pay for drinks, on tennis shoes, on tint for your car or for your clothes, why shouldn’t I require more for a commitment on my finger?

Talk to me. What’s your take? Would you marry someone who proposed with you with a $25.00 ring? Why or why not?

 

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter @mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

 

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56 Replies to “The Issue of the Ring”

  1. My boyfriend surprised me with a ring some years back and later told me it was $3,000. He finally got out of nursing school so I am OK with that or a $25 ring. I don’t care about a ring, I care more about being compatible. I think it’s sort of shallow to care about a ring so much, even in my 30’s. His sister got a $23,000 engagement ring and it’s not even that nice especially for that price. I am giving that marriage two years max.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I get it Lisa, but why do you think it is shallow to want a nice ring? Having been married and divorced it is not the price tag, but the effort. What effort does $25 suggest to anyone? I know people who have beautiful rings ($10K or more) and have been married for years. It is not the ring, but the two people who make the commitment. I’m suggesting people know their partners and purchase accordingly. I’m not knocking big rings nor small rings, but I definitely won’t accept a $25.00 ring. I’m 42. Put some effort into it.

      Like

  2. My thought was how many of the woman actually knew it was a $25 engagement ring? Many people don’t know diamonds. They see this big stone that sparkles and assume it’s genuine. Even the band is genuine. It’s a dupe and that is even worse than the price tag.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. You make many great points. The ring I received was more than I expected and I love it but it doesn’t define our love. I originally wanted a 100 dollar Pandora ring because he had just bought a house and had no money for a more expensive one. I figured he can just buy a better one later but the idea was nixed by pretty much everyone so he saved for nearly a year and bought it in the diamond district in the city.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. See, I love that. His commitment to you was shown by his ability to save to get you something he thought you should have. I love the ring and I’m so happy you shared. I think we don’t give ourselves enough credit for wanting a nice ring. It’s okay if you don’t and it’s okay if you do, but his commitment should be evident.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It’s my first reaction to always want the lesser because I never believe I deserve nice things. I don’t want to be seen as asking too much. Yet he gets so happy when people comment on it and says things like “I am happy I was able to give you that ring.” Insecurity is something I will surely work on more this year.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. And that is the point that many women are not acknowledging. I love how you just admitted that. You said it. We women, believe that we don’t deserve nice things. We don’t want to seem like a gold digger. But, we do deserve nice things. We do deserve an awesome love who wants to give us the world and honor his commitment to us. Insecurity is real and acknowledging it is the first step. I don’t care if I was 20 and he proposed with a $25.00 ring, but after that age when is it appropriate?

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Personally, the size or cost of the ring shouldn’t matter as I think it’s the thought that counts. However, I also think a man should know what his soon-to-be-wife likes and doesn’t like and should buy accordingly.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I feel like I might be in the minority here, but I can’t fathom accepting a ring worth so much money (the one you priced out not the $24 lol. It’s gorgeous!! Don’t get me wrong but WOW). But that’s me personally. That money can be put to better use someplace else. I’m very much against diamonds (again personal choice and only like 10% of that surrounds how they are mined) and while I love to look at all the shiny rings, in the back of my head I’m always thinking how they would look just as shiny and beautiful with crystals for $100-200 instead of thousands. Especially after a friend told me how her wedding band alone was $1000 and she forgot it on vacation once so she picked up a $30 sterling silver ring and only wears it now instead.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Nothing wrong with being in the minority. It is okay. It is up to you, but my point is that wanting a nice ring doesn’t make you a gold digger. I think the man should know the person that they are marrying and what they would like.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I am tempted to take a middle ground here: going for either a ring that is not way too expensive or one that is not too cheap either.

    But then being expensive or cheap is relative. Why buy a $25 ring when you can conveniently afford one of $25,000? On the other hand, why pay for a ring you can’t afford?

    I think the heart should count more than the value of the ring. I understand your perspective that a grown man should be able to afford the type of ring his beloved would like. But what if he can’t afford it? He should move on to a ‘cheaper’ girl?

    I wouldn’t subscribe to that. If I did, then I wouldn’t have proposed to my lady at all because the ring I used didn’t cost me a fortune. It wasn’t until our wedding proper that I invested a little on our wedding rings.

    Bottomline: when buying an engagement ring, I don’t think there a-one-size-fits-all prescription. It is a question of taste and means.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Absolutely. I don’t think anyone should tell you that you should accept a cheap ring anymore than call you a gold digger because you want an expensive one. Victor, I always say that you know who you are dating and before you even get to the engagement ring, you should know their financial status. Realistically you should know during the dating phase. I don’t think it is a one-size fits all, but I refuse to think that I should have to settle for a $25.00 ring because I look like a gold digger. To who?

      Liked by 1 person

  7. What if you could get the exact ring you want and it cost $25.00? The jewels, setting and all.
    You could take that $8,475 savings and grow your retirement, purchase/upgrade your home, or save for your son’s education. Would that be acceptable? Just curious.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. How would that be possible? The thing is that you can have it all. Why should I have to settle for a $25.00 ring and not have a house, retirement or be able to pay for college? The reality is that a man only spending $25.00 can’t afford to buy you a house, save for retirement or is sending his child to college. Let’s be clear. Maybe in 5 to 10 years. I believe that we need to stop expecting women to settle because the reality is that I know what I want and what I deserve. He may not be able to afford a $25k ring, but he definitely can afford more than a $25.00 one. At the end of the day, I think the man who proposes should know what he wants you to have.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. You already know how I feel about this subject from my blog about diamond engagement rings and the emotional investment that a lot of women place on the ring vs the proposal, so I won’t go into that part.

    However, the price of the ring, carats, clarity, cut…. this was all a marketing ploy of the Debeers Diamond Co. And since it’s inception, they’ve been pushing their scheme down the throats of women for decades. “Diamonds are forever.” “Every Kiss begins with Kay.” All for the sole purpose of convincing women that the price of a rock matters and if he doesn’t pay “X” amount, he must not value you as much as a man who pays more.

    That’s a lot of pressure. Let’s invest in a house… our honeymoon… not a rock that depreciates by 60% after you buy it.

    Are you worth taking on his last name? Heck yes. That’s the honor. That’s what shows you that you’re worth it. The fact that he’s humbling himself in front you and asking for your hand. The ring is just a part of the process. In fact, the engagement ring wasn’t even a part of our “process” until about 60 years ago. We just adopted it. It truly doesn’t mean… anything unless you place that value on it yourself.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Honestly, I’d rather have no ring than a $25 one. And how long will that last before turning? You make some great points that I hadn’t even thought to think about LOL. Thanks for sharing your experiences being married, divorced and seriously dating.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I meant I would not want THAT $25 ring. I don’t know how much the ring I would want would cost, but I feel like I should get whatever I want in the relationship, within reason of course. I should get the ceremony I want, the honeymoon. Of course these are just things and the wedding may just be a few hours, but if I’m gonna do it, I’m gonna do it how we envision it. And within our means, of course.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. We all have to settle at one point, within reason of course. One thing my guy has taught me is to be humble and not entitled. He doesn’t have to buy me anything. He does it because he wants to. Yes, I think I deserve attention, loyalty and respect but I’m talking about being materialistic. He lets me live at his house without paying rent or bills. He helps me pay bills. I don’t expect that or anything from him except the things I mentioned.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. My point is getting into a branching conversation about how much a piece of jewelry costs is a precarious way to start a relationship. Time would be better spent speaking in terms of what would enhance the relationship as a whole. It’s perfectly reasonable to be of a certain season in one’s life and have expectations for housing and even status of that’s important. Where people get lost is demanding how much another person should spend in that case.

    If a parent has to choose between the education and well-being for their child and the future of a new relationship, no matter what lip service is given one of two things will certainly happen. The parent asked to choose will un-choose the new partner. Overtime, the argument will shift focus, but it will come down to that being the deal breaker. Or, the weight of resentment over the cost of a very insignificant piece of jewelry will negatively effect the relationship. Some can survive that. Some will not.

    As a woman who has ALWAYS been against diamonds for any purpose, especially “relationship branding”, it’s difficult to fully appreciate this discussion if we’re just talking about the cost of the ring. Diamonds are plentiful in this world. The cost and perceived value has been hi-jacked primarily by the DeBeers family who have been documented to create hostile and outright deadly working environments for individuals harvesting the coals. The majority of these individuals never even see an actual diamond. They’re beaten to produce rocks.

    However, if these things have value to you consider this…If you want to document your worth as $14,000, $8,000 or even $24, you might in turn not be worth much of anything. Go back to value instead of cost. I think people will be much more fulfilled if that’s the case.

    Jus sayn’

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I’m not saying someone should spend $14k on a ring. Spend what you want. Is it my dream ring? Yes, but does that mean I won’t accept his proposal if he gets me a smaller version – absolutely not. But, everyone has a dream right? Do you have a dream house? Should you stop dreaming because you can’t get it? Nope. My point is that a $25 ring is not acceptable. The argument that I’m a gold digger if I expect a ring worth more than that is false and you mainly hear it in the black community. People who can only afford $25.00 can’t afford to date or be married. I’m not getting married to be broke. Been there and done that in my 20’s. I’m established and my expectation is that my partner will be too and in fact he is. I don’t advocate struggle love, but love in general. I don’t do broke and I don’t believe that women should. The argument on social media is that if you want more than a $25 ring that you are a whore or a gold digger. Really? How so? The argument in itself is designed to let black women feel that they don’t deserve to be courted and receive a nice ring (whatever that ring is that her mate chooses). Then it moved to the fact that “I know many people with nice rings who are being cheated on.” So, poor people don’t cheat? We have to stop telling women (especially black women) to lower their standards to the point of having none. He could buy you a $500 ring and if that is all he can afford then fine. You may just accept a band instead of a ring. Your choice. My argument is that we need to stop propagating struggle love and telling women that a $25 ring and a proposal is better than nothing. It’s not.

      Like

  12. I also want to add, that if you believe in engagement rings (as a man) if you’re going to get one, invest wisely. Know your woman and proceed accordingly. Some women are very particular about engagement rings… you don’t want to mess this up.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Honestly, Tikeetha, I have to side with Mr. C on this one. Suggesting that he should finance the ring when he is concerned about his son’s tuition is adding to the burden of debt, which falls on both of you after marriage. I don’t agree that purchasing the ring represents commitment or how well he understands or respects what you want. If he does buy the ring under resistance, it may lead to resentment later on and come back to haunt you when you go through a rough patch.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. LOL. Gail I get it. I truly do. I wasn’t saying he had to buy that one, but he did have to invest in a ring. What I want and what I get are two different things. His son’s college tuition will be my debt when we get married too. It’s easier to walk away from things that you don’t invest your time and money in. He’s not getting that ring, but he won’t approach me with a $25.00 ring either.

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  14. I don’t know about this one Tikeetha. There are many women walking around with expensive rings, “with the promise of a committed relationship,” while their significant other sleeps around or does some other foolishness. I think what secures a commitment is how that person treats you from the beginning and the conversations that you have. Asking someone to buy an expensive ring also MIGHT create an unnecessary debt. I guess I’ve just never personally been worried about the material part of it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I understand that. But, sis it is a lot of broke men putting a $25 ring on it cheating on you too. The reality is that your dowry was more than $25. It may have been a cow back in the day. How much is a cow now? Why should the ring be less than something I can flip into a meal? I don’t care what you spend, I’m not accepting $25 and I don’t think anyone over the age of 21 should, but to each it’s own. I think the truth is that the man needs to know what type of woman he’s marrying and what type of investment he’s willing to make.

      Like

      1. Not offended. I don’t either, but to give me a $25.00 ring at my age tells me that you place so little value in me. I mean honestly I don’t go to McDonald’s for a date. If we are on a road trip yes, but he would never take me to McDonald’s. The thing is that if you want something why be cheap with it? Again, $25.00 is the amount not $2500 or whatever. I’m worth more than that and most dowries are.

        Liked by 1 person

  15. I agree with you I think woman should hold themselves to the worth that they deserve. I would not mine a $60.00 ring either. I brought 20.00 jewelry and they all turn colors or were broke in a few seconds.

    Liked by 2 people

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