Your partner just proposed and you’re super excited (naturally), but there’s just one teeny, tiny problem: you can’t stand your engagement ring. Being stressed is totally normal, as you don’t want to insult the person you love or appear difficult, but you also really don’t want to have to live with that ring on your finger for the rest of your life. And if you’ve been one to fantasize about this moment and what your ring might look like, including the cut, design, and type of diamond you’ve always envisioned, it can be hard to settle for something that isn’t what you had in mind. The good news is, you can definitely get the ring you want without compromising your relationship. Here’s what to do.
1. Speak Up
First off, you need to say something if you’re unhappy or else your partner will never know and you’ll be stuck with that ring forever. “Do be honest with yourself about how you feel. If you don’t like your ring, you can’t ‘unfeel’ that emotion, and repressing the feeling isn’t going to help,” relationship counselor David Bennett told POPSUGAR. “If anything, you may become resentful toward your partner. I suggest honestly expressing your feelings, but do so in a way that takes their feelings into account. Many people will hear a criticism of the ring as a personal criticism of them.”
2. How to Tell Them
You may be feeling upset that your partner chose a ring you didn’t like, but they may also be upset that you didn’t like the ring they carefully chose and spent a lot of time picking out. The best thing to do is sit down and show empathy for them, David said. Be gentle in your tone and come from a good place.
3. Don’t Act Entitled or Greedy
If you want a new ring, make sure you choose one that works with their budget and that you don’t make it seem as though you’re upset with the cost rather than just the look of it. “If you act entitled to a new ring that’s the absolute best and only the best, it may have the effect of permanently straining the relationship,” he continued. “It could be taken as entitlement, a very unappealing trait for a long-term partner.”
4. How to Choose a New One
While you’re the one choosing your new ring (and you should be vocal and stand up for what you want), have a clear design in place that’s at a similar price point to the original, and also let your partner feel a part of the process. Don’t just go swap it yourself. “An engagement ring is ultimately a gift. If you demand it, it isn’t a gift; that’s called a ransom,” David said. “Work with your partner and allow them to have some say in the process.” You should also be flexible and see the bigger picture: a ring (and its size, shape, and cost) doesn’t determine the love and commitment that goes into a relationship. “I’m a firm believer that engagements and marriages are more important than rings and weddings,” he said. “So when evaluating your current ring or choosing a new one, consider things like relationship happiness and financial limitations.”