Ain’t this one of those topics that nobody wants to really, for real for real talk about?! I mean here you are. You’ve been delightfully proposed to by the love of your life, only you are not feeling your ring, like at all, because it is too small! We’ve already talked about how size matters … in other areas, and I’m here to tell you that it ALSO matters when it comes to your ring.

Is it superficial for you to care about how many carats you have in your engagement ring? Maybe. Is it irresponsible of you to not express your opinion about something that is going to be with you for the rest of your life? YES!!

My two cents is that if you want a bigger engagement ring, then the mature and smart and business-like thing to do is to express your concerns and desires pre-purchase! That’s what I did. Oh, YES I did! Your man is not a mind reader. (They tell us this time and time again!) Don’t go leaving him in the dark with a crystal ball when it is time to pick out a ring that is visually appealing to you and comes from his heart.

I am a girly-girl. I like feminine, sparkly, beautiful things. But I don’t wear a lot of jewelry. So my engagement and wedding rings needed to be really special. Imagine my dismay when I stood looking at the teeny, tiny stone the jeweler showed me my beloved had selected for me. What was a girl to do?!! I loved my man. But didn’t love his taste in the ring I would wear forEVAH! Here’s how I handled it:

I took a deep breath and smiled. After all, the jeweler had just asked me if I was “ready to be WOWED?!” I was ready. But sadly, no WOWING had occurred after the big reveal. And all eyes were on me. You know the feeling when you are looking at someone’s baby that isn’t really, er, umm…cute? And you coo something like, “awww so adooorable” instead of shrieking and running from the alien staring up at you from the crib, which is what you really want to do?  That’s how I felt. So I cooed, “It’s adooorable” at the ring, and quickly pivoted to, “can I see the other rings you considered before deciding on this one?”

As the jeweler showed me the other rings they had considered, I was painfully aware of Al’s silence as he stood beside me. He’d seen me coo “adorable” at other people’s babies and now, I was essentially looking at his “baby” and he knew what that meant. When I learned that the jeweler didn’t have the size carat I had in mind in his shop, I knew he wasn’t the jeweler for us. So I suggested we come back later (as in NEVAH) and steered my beloved toward a jewelry store where I knew they stocked big rocks and specialized in customized pieces. Then when I had some alone time with our new jeweler (you MUST make time to be alone with your jeweler when your guy isn’t around), I politely told him the smallest size stone I was willing to settle for with the best clarity and cut I could get at Al’s price range. I literally gave him a roughly drawn pencil sketch of what I had in mind. I then left it up to him and his salesmanship to steer my fiancee in the right direction.

Fast forward to today…I often get stopped by strangers on the street, grocery store and at restaurants when they take a gander at my ring. Al’s chest swells up with pride every time it happens. Because it means he’s the man. But you know what? More than that, I swear when I look at my ring I can feel Al beaming right through it and up at me. That’s how special my ring is, and of course, our love.

Marriage is about love. It is also about respect. You’ve gotta know what your man can afford. Ask him, “Honey, what is the ballpark range that you’re thinking on spending?” His answer will at least give you a bling idea, and then you and your jeweler can figure out how to get the biggest bang for his lovely buck. I would advise you not to choose something that is going to break his bank. Stressing him over money ain’t a great way to start a commitment with someone. If the ring you “require” is light years away from what he can afford, and if he’s not making the kind of money that you feel is needed to sustain a lifestyle that you want, and  you’re too selfish to chip in to bring your dream bling to life if that’s what you need to do, then maybe you are not the right person for this guy. Real talk.

RELATIONSHIP - Diamond cut

Remember, the ring is a reflection of him, too. To get the ring that is right for both of you, be smart and KNOW your ring. What cut do you want? Learn the price range of carats and know about clarity. Visit a few jewelers on your own (or on a Sippin’ Sunday with your besties!) and ask them the nitty gritty questions. I knew nothing about diamonds. But I knew fabulous bling when I saw it. By educating yourself, you’ll be able to speak intelligently about rings and, better yet, hint intelligently and effectively with information on the right size that will still allow HIM to choose your engaging ring.

I’d love to hear y’all’s stories about this, especially since tastes and traditions have changed so much. (Tattoo rings, anyone?) Weigh in and rock out below!

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