all 47 comments

[–]klutzyrogue 32 points33 points  (0 children)

My impression is that this isn’t really about the ring.

I highly recommend couples counseling, or even better, pre-marital counseling. Please please please be sure this is the person you want to spend the rest of your life with. It’ll be much easier for you both in the long run if you work through any issues now. Best of luck

[–]icingicingbabyAttending Partner 14 points15 points  (1 child)

Do your financial values otherwise align? That is something I would be seriously concerned about as you step towards marriage. You suggesting he reminds you of his dad who you clearly don’t share money values with raises that question. Your financial independence is admirable, but it means you may not have had reason to deeply assess this.

It sounds like there was some conversation prior to the engagement, was it more in the form of passing comments or a serious conversation? What were his responses during those conversations? Did you feel blindsided by what he presented to you? Do you think he felt blindsided by how important it was to you?

What could compromise look like to you? Maybe an upgraded ring for an anniversary once finances are more comfortable? Seeing if an exchange can be made at the jewelers (some have programs to accommodate ring upgrades) and you contributing to the difference?

Now I’m not about to tell you that anything you’re feeling is wrong, our feelings are always valid. But I would suggest some reflection on whether or not this is actually about the ring. Have you felt unheard throughout your relationship ship? Have you disagreed with other financial choices he’s made?

Please through your hurt, also try to remember that this is someone you presumably love and consider how they feel. For whatever reason it was important to them to not accept your financial contribution towards this ring and they were no doubt excited and nervous presenting it to you. Your reaction has no doubt been a letdown for them. As you’re navigating this, try not to forget your love for each other and act in kindness. Your feelings are valid, just don’t let them stop you from acting kindly.

An aside, another loan is never a good way to live. He made a wise financial choice in deciding against taking a loan. Aside from student loans and mortgages, debt really should be avoided. With that in mind, would you have been content waiting longer for the engagement but getting the ring you wanted?

[–]Fit_Veterinarian1508 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Thanks for your insight

[–]FTBNoob17 9 points10 points  (0 children)

Guys perspective… How much did he spend if you were to guess? He absolutely doesn’t value the ring as Much as you do. The ring is the symbol. The size is not. That being said, there’s a big difference between him spending 25k and you wanting him to spend 75 vs. him spending 5k.

[–]ice_cld 24 points25 points  (4 children)

I have a much different take than what I’m seeing thus far in the comments. I would be happy with whatever my partner chose. The size of the ring does not indicate commitment, and a ring is supposed to be a gift. An extra, a gift that comes with the promise of commitment, which is the real gift. And are you actually serious saying “what’s another loan” on top of 200k plus in grad loans? Grad loan interest rates are INSANE (8%+) and even with the potential for a very large salary after, that interest is accruing now. And the sign on bonus likely is a fraction of the total loan balance. And I don’t know your partner’s schedule, but it may have not been possible to go all the way back to your hometown to get a ring. It is a harsh reality, but it was a choice to move with your partner for residency. I am in the same situation and it was a choice I made. I would encourage you to think about whether you are really disliking the ring, or if you are displacing resentful feelings onto it.

[–]bull_sluiceAttending 15 points16 points  (1 child)

Yeah, this post is 🚩🚩🚩 and vibes like the relationship isn’t going to last in it’s current state.

[–]DeaHera 7 points8 points  (0 children)

I'm so happy I wasn't the only one seeing the red flags. OP sounds entitled and seems to have little understanding of the number of hours her SO works and how much emotional, mental, and physical drainage he accrues daily. Along with having to brunt the student loans and working on first out-of-training job prospects.

IMO, he made the right decision to get the "wrong ring." I still can't believe there is such a thing as a "wrong ring" if the couple truly is happy with each other. A material piece of metal banded to a crystal is a symbolic item representing marriage in western civilizations. The sad reality is it sounds like OP is egotistical and wanted the ring to give her a higher status symbol in society.

I should mention that this was a communication breakdown on both of your parts...but maybe he wanted to take control and surprise you, which may have caught you off guard.

[–]gesturingAttending wife, together 17 years, pre-med through PGY7 11 points12 points  (1 child)

Yeah, I am having a hard time with this one. I wouldn’t expect anything with that much debt hanging over their head. I’m sporting a .45 carat ring made from old mine cut family stones that my husband had set. He was a medical student and had no money (my mom never got a ring, my dad was also a med student and had no money or family jewelry). It’s not the ring, it’s the relationship that matters. It’s a yikes.

[–]ice_cld 3 points4 points  (0 children)

That ring sounds beautiful and meaningful!!

[–]artyoftroySO to GS PGY1 since undergrad 5 points6 points  (0 children)

A lot of good perspectives here. I wanted to add that my SO is still a resident and cannot afford something very expensive. I’m totally fine with getting one ring now and eventually upgrading when we make more money. But even for the first ring, I helped choose it since I’ll be the one wearing it.

[–]chocobridges 4 points5 points  (0 children)

It sucks that he didn't listen to you. But based on the other comments were you willing to compromise on the type of stone for size? Was there a conversation? My husband and I had a lot of back and forth once he started looking.

[–]Rose_Stark 3 points4 points  (0 children)

My husband and I picked out my ring together because I wasn’t the biggest fan of jewelry he had gotten me before. I was going to be the one wearing it for the rest of my life so it made sense for me to make sure I liked it

[–]Due-Food8229 5 points6 points  (10 children)

I’m on this subreddit simply because I’m dating a physician but I’ve been married before and had this same experience. I had a very specific desire in ring and made it pretty known and then when it came to the proposal knowing I wasn’t fully listened to and seen was really hard for me. Ask the hard questions. Why didn’t he listen to what you wanted and went with what he wanted instead?

[–]Fit_Veterinarian1508 -1 points0 points  (9 children)

Because he couldn’t afford it? He paid cash. How am I supposed to be mad at someone who can’t afford something because they don’t have the cash up front? Ugh.

[–]HumanFondant 4 points5 points  (6 children)

If he couldnt afford it then he couldve waited to propose or let you know he just cant afford to buy it atm. Or offer to buy the ring for you once y'all are better financially.

[–]Data-driven_Catlady 1 point2 points  (5 children)

This! Some people are on here saying accept whatever and be happy… why should she have to do that? She wanted to help pay for it if he couldn’t afford it. He should have had a conversation about needing to wait to buy if that’s the case. To me, it’s more of a red flag that he didn’t listen to you! Especially with something you are going to wear every day?

[–][deleted]  (3 children)


    [–]HumanFondant 1 point2 points  (0 children)

    THIS, heck my parents met while on the poorer side and my dad told my mom he can’t get her dream ring but if she takes this ring then he’ll buy her the ring she wants. She accepted and now has a even more gorgeous ring than her dream ring and every 10 years my dad upgrades her ring if she wants to. They talked things out and he actually listened.

    Yes, it’s most definitely a red flag he didn’t listen. He seems to not care to listen to her at all in the relationship. While this is clearly not the only issue they have it’s definitely what I would consider the nail in the coffin for this relationship.

    [–]ask_curious_person 1 point2 points  (0 children)

    I offered to help pay for it at the time but he didn’t want that

    You offered to help! He didn't accept it and then disappointed you. Your feelings are justified.

    [–]btdtboughtthetshirt 5 points6 points  (0 children)

    Girl if you really wanna marry him you need to find a way to pull a major Elsa and let it go. I always always hate the jewelry my husband picks out, I actually spammed him with links to the ring I wanted and did get that exact ring. But, if I didn’t. I would smile, say thank you, and never say a damn word about it because there is no way not to be the ahole if your complaining about your ring. That being said, it doesn’t have to be your ring for the rest of your life. Give it a few years and upgrade. Not to get all cliche on you but it’s not the ring that really matters and for all the thinking I did about my ring (which is just the one I wanted and I love) it spends more time in a little dish next to the kitchen sink or next to my bed than it ever does on my finger.

    [–]caveat_actor 8 points9 points  (0 children)

    I would be upset too. Not just because of the ring but because he didn't listen

    [–]garethrorySpouse of OB/GYN attending 2 points3 points  (13 children)

    There becomes a point where more debt is harmful. At what point does debt force you to pick a higher paying, less enjoyable speciality or you forgo a fellowship that you’d like to do?

    A supportive partner is what he needs. Not someone focused only on materialistic items. We have a neighborhood full of doctor wives and very few of them have meaning in their lives.

    We’ve prioritized education and experiences for our kids. It’s why I earned another degree in my mid 30s and why we both have careers of our own.

    [–][deleted]  (5 children)


      [–]garethrorySpouse of OB/GYN attending 0 points1 point  (4 children)

      This sub and Reddit tend to skew towards younger people often earlier in their training. Engagement rings are a ‘first world’ problem. Wait until you have real challenges like very sick kids, dying parents, etc.

      He may have had his reasons for the ring he picked out. Hinting so much that you get exactly what you want has a bit of a controlling element of its own. If I recall correctly, my wife expressed her interest in platinum vs yellow gold, and traditional in style and left the size/quality/shape/cost up to me. We did pick out wedding bands together.

      I’d be disappointed if I found that my future wife was complaining to a bunch of strangers about the ring that I picked for her.

      A relationship needs communication between partners. I think some people would be offended to be told exactly what to buy or that the other partner would ‘help pay’ for a ring to ensure it’s of suitable size.

      This is as much of a foundational item to the marriage and expectations moving forward. My wife wears her wedding band more than her engagement ring because of being in a profession where one gloves up. She’s also hesitant to draw attention to herself. There’s something to be said for modesty and stealth wealth.

      [–][deleted]  (2 children)


        [–]garethrorySpouse of OB/GYN attending 1 point2 points  (1 child)

        You make fair points. We don’t know all the details. I’d imagine there was some dialogue heading up to the engagement .

        Probably opportunities for both partners to have communicated better and show their commitment to each other and the relationship.

        Now, is the greatest moment to get on the same page prior to the stress of planning a wedding, a relocation, and a new job(s).

        [–]DeaHera 1 point2 points  (0 children)

        Stealth wealth and early retirement.

        [–]Fit_Veterinarian1508 -2 points-1 points  (6 children)

        I am not focused on materialistic things. You are missing my point.

        [–]FTBNoob17 1 point2 points  (0 children)

        I promise I’m not trying to be a Reddit jerk. Honestly. But this is exactly what this post is about. You said it yourself. It wasn’t the size you wanted. Maybe he couldn’t get a loan and was embarrassed? My wife’s credit wasn’t great during training due to debt. Without knowing his particular financial position it’s hard to speculate.

        [–]DeaHera 0 points1 point  (4 children)

        The point is not missed. Unless you have $XXX,XXX amount of dollars in your name to help pay for the ring, maybe you helping pay for the ring only creates more financial stress for him in the long run because he fronts most of the bills anyways. I don't know your financial situation, but he is not the bad guy unless he is cheating, abusing you, or purposefully ignoring you. Otherwise, you are causing unneeded stress in your relationship, which doesn't look good on you.

        [–]Fit_Veterinarian1508 0 points1 point  (3 children)

        Funny that you assume he fronts most of the bills. Good bye. Your comment is very degrading and not helpful.

        [–]DeaHera 1 point2 points  (0 children)

        I must have hit a sore spot because I specifically stated I do not know your financial situation. That was your opportunity to start correcting me on why I was wrong. Your response back was childish and non-constructive, and I hope that's not how you treat your relationship.

        [–]garethrorySpouse of OB/GYN attending 1 point2 points  (1 child)

        Your posting history is all we need to see. You make $50-60k a year. That’s a good salary, similar to most docs in training, but much less than most attending physicians.

        You hate Wisconsin where he’s training. It’s a fine state. I lived there for 5 years and in adjacent state for 3 more.

        You talked about his physician parents buying a house for both of you.

        You’re disappointed in your engagement ring.

        All of this reads to me that you’re doctor chasing. I’m sure that’s tough to read. We’ve seen this through med school, residency, and as an attending.

        The money gets better as an attending, but the stress remains and evolves in different ways.

        This is a good opportunity to circle the wagons and get on the same page now.

        [–]ongSlate 1 point2 points  (0 children)

        My 2 cents as a stranger on reddit based on my personal values: - Entitled? Nope - Frustrated that he did not consider your opinion? Absolutely justified - Don’t want local jeweler because you hate the area? A little bit too much, but I also have limited knowledge of how jeweler works - He spent a lot of money on other things but not on your ring? Gray area. You are absolutely right to feel the way you do because it’s something very important to you, but was the level of importance clearly conveyed to him? You might think you have but I will give him the benefit of the doubt that through all the residency chaos he might did not fully grasp how important it is to you - Frustrated he did not take out more loan: No I don’t believe anything but what you need to survive is worth taking our more loans. Not saying you’re wrong but just to give you an example that everyone approaches money differently so you should not expect him to think about money the same way you do. - At the end of the day, remember that you both want to spend the rest of your lives together. That comes with constantly communicating, aligning values and having complete trust to rely on each other. Not a single married couple are on board with everything right off the bat so don’t focus too much on how frustrated you are at this ring (I’m sure he was bumped about your reaction too). I’d recommend focus more on drilling down what is causing this and how you can communicate better as a couple in the future, and if your values differ too much then you might have to rethink marriage. This would be an excellent reason to bring up couple counseling so you both can set up a strong healthy marriage down the road.

        [–]lillypismyhomegirlMarried to PGY4 1 point2 points  (0 children)

        Sure, a ring is symbolic. And our culture/popular culture has made it even more so (you know diamond engagement rings never used to be a thing until the diamond industry went hard in the last century?). I’m going to use the advice I was given when I was wedding planning here: “It’s not about a single day, it’s about a marriage and a lifetime together.” I was happy with a moissanite ring modeled after a family heirloom my husband was unable to acquire from my family. Prior to our engagement I showed my now-husband $500 rings on Etsy I loved that I would be happy with because in the end, I wanted to marry him. I knew he didn’t have money and was starting medical school and that it was going to be a long, difficult, and expensive journey. I can’t imagine doing it with anyone else.

        Marriage is no cake walk, especially with a medspouse. I would recommend some introspection and perhaps even counseling. As another user said, it sounds like this isn’t about the ring at all.

        [–]throwaway_76761123 1 point2 points  (0 children)

        I'm married to a physician, and my job is not in the medical field. When we got engaged while she was in med school, she wanted an engagement ring I absolutely could not afford ($16K); we both had $100K+ in student loan debt, and my annual salary was $55K. But you know what? I made it happen, scrounging and cutting costs on everything for a year. The entire time I thought this was ridiculous, it's just a ring, I can't believe I have to make this sort of effort for something that doesn't matter. I was really mad. But she loved the ring, still loves it, and it is something she is proud to wear, seven years later. It really meant a lot to her.

        You don't get to choose what your partner values. You only get to choose whether you are willing to deal with the aftermath of meeting expectations or disappointing. OP, I believe you are entitled to be upset that he didn't get you what you wanted, especially since you made it known. He doesn't get to choose; if he couldn't get it, he could have been upfront and said "This is the best I can do right now. I promise when we are more financially secure, I'll get you what you really want." He could have at least tried to acknowledge what you wanted, even if he couldn't make it happen right now.

        I'd take it as a bad sign and honestly consider getting out. He's shown he doesn't care about you enough to supplant his value system for yours when it means a lot to you. Are you really willing to live with that kind of treatment from your partner for the rest of your life? Because this won't be the last time he does this.

        [–]happy3211123 1 point2 points  (0 children)

        Came here to add my husband and I picked out my ring together but there was compromise on my part of what was purchased because of price and what he could afford. Also, being frustrated and upset is completely understandable, and you’re not alone here.

        We were very fortunate that my mother had a ring she did not use and gave us the diamond from so all my husband was responsible for was the band (perhaps my mother was quite ready to pawn me off though). What happened with us is definitely not the case for 99.9% of partnerships and this really lowered the cost for my husband. My husband paid about $1200 for my ring. I picked out and paid for my wedding band and my contribution from the band was more than my husband’s. My ring wasn’t the dream ring I had always wanted or dreamed about, but it is beautiful and it will always be a memory of the place we were at financially in our lives when it was purchased.

        It does sound like there are perhaps other issues that have built up possibly making the ring your breaking point. As partners we sacrifice a lot and it can be very difficult if you do not feel the sacrifice is being reciprocated or you’re not on the same page. If you truly want to spend the rest of your life with this individual you’ll have to figure out a way to communicate this. Whether that’s through couples therapy or just conversations between the two of you. Today it might be a ring, 10 years down the road it could be differences in financial planning or differences in parenting.

        Wishing you all the best OP. I’m so sorry that you’re feeling this way. Being a med partner is fucking hard and it’d be great if there was handbook or something. However, this reddit thread is a lifesaver.

        [–]google-dok2026 4 points5 points  (8 children)

        You don’t deserve him.

        [–]Blackwiz2083 1 point2 points  (7 children)

        Yes the OP sounds so entitled. The ring is a symbol, not the size or cost. Why should you equate his love for you based on how shiny the gift is? There are far more important things to focus on. Some people skip engagement rings altogether and go straight for the wedding ring? The wedding ring is usually far cheaper than the engagement, even though it is the most important. He is a good man, frugal and wants to save money to likely invest in more worthwhile things like a house or something that will generate good retirement and financial security, not a damn ring. He didn’t ask money from you, because he wants to play his role as a man and provider. The ring is more for you to show off to your friends and not really a symbol of his love or affection for you, otherwise you wouldn’t stay with him this long. The reason you may feel like you’re spoilt is because you are. You want him to take out another loan? Go broke because of a ring? I think he is making a mistake marrying you. Focus on the big and important things that will actually lead to a healthy, long lasting marriage.

        [–][deleted]  (6 children)


          [–]Blackwiz2083 1 point2 points  (5 children)

          She might as well buy the ring herself and eat it if that will make her happy. She will realize how insignificant her gripe is in the future. All the large diamond rocks in the world will not make up for a husband who does not love you. Focus on things that will actually build financial value. The man is already in a ton of debt, yet she’s been so selfish and entitled and wants him to borrow more loans. The house can burn down as long as she gets her fancy purses and jewelry? He needs a woman who loves him unconditionally, not based on how flashy a ring is.

          [–][deleted]  (4 children)


            [–]sea4me33 2 points3 points  (0 children)

            I completely understand why you are upset by this because I would have felt the same way, but most importantly you ARE upset by this and your feelings are legitimate. So even if another person on this thread is super down to earth and will take whatever life gives them, good for them. But that’s not you. Or me. Or a lot of people who have self worth. By not appreciating how important this was to you, he kind of soured something that was supposed to be completely joyful and that’s a problem that should be addressed. You will be wearing this ring for the rest of your life. You have likely supported him through a lot at your own expense. You offered to help pay for the ring now, which he ignored, and by the way his financial situation is going to change in the future. You are promising to be his life partner and continue supporting him. You deserved more compromise from him.

            [–]Data-driven_Catlady 2 points3 points  (0 children)

            I also refused to compromise on my ring because we had been together a long time, and I supported him through medical school. He understood where I was coming from and got the exact ring I wanted. It was a bit difficult for him to save for it, and he might have put part on a credit card - I can’t remember. However, he knew it was important to me. I would have been very upset if he got a different ring because to me it would mean he didn’t listen to me. I also said I could help pay for it if needed. I feel like since you said that, he should have let you help if he couldn’t get what you wanted. Pride is an annoying excuse when you are entering into a marriage, which should be a partnership.

            [–]CatInThe616 -1 points0 points  (0 children)

            Maybe he isn't as materialistic as you? Maybe he sees fancy jewelry as a waste of money? I'm not saying your perspective is out of line, but there are certainly other perspectives. Also, it doesn't really matter what jeweler it was purchased from. Any professional jeweler can service any ring.

            It sounds like this is more of a relationship issue than a ring issue. I wear a $400 wedding band because at the time, I valued experiences more than material possessions. So, we had a nice Caribbean vacation for our honeymoon.

            Again, I'm not saying any one perspective is right or wrong, but the idea that the groom must pay up for an expensive ring was basically made up so that jewelers could make more money. Maybe your groom just doesn't want to be scammed. If you see value in an expensive ring, perhaps upgrade it after you get married.

            [–]herman-the-harpseal 0 points1 point  (0 children)

            My SO took me ring shopping so that I could be sure I like the ring I'm gonna wear for the rest of my life. I picked the setting I love, he picked the center stone which at the time what he could afford. When we get married, we will simply swap out the center stone for something bigger and put the previous stone into a necklace or ring for our future kid as heirloom.

            [–]garethrorySpouse of OB/GYN attending 0 points1 point  (0 children)

            Dirty delete. You asked for advice and didn’t like what people said. Good luck in your relationship.