Question: Dear Dr. Dish, I want to get my girlfriend an engagement ring. But after I have seen all of her friends parade around 1.5-plus carat rings, I can’t afford it. She says it doesn’t matter, but it does, doesn’t it? I feel she’ll be embarrassed to wear my itty-bitty ring, which is all I can afford. What should I do?
Answer: You want to marry her? And you’re fairly certain she’s not materialistic and concerned about such ridiculous things as carats? Then propose! The carat size shouldn’t matter! You love her, she loves you, you want to start a life together — isn’t that all that matters?
But I do understand your plight.
I’ve never been a big fan of the engagement ring. I’ve always thought it wasn’t fair to the guy who has to fork over three months’ worth of his salary for something he doesn’t get any mutual benefit. I mean, if you’re going to spend $10,000 on something, get me a 27-inch iMac, a super-size flat-screen TV, three new surfboards and monthly couple massages a year. I’ll say yes!
But I know the engagement ring is a symbol — of what, I’m not sure — that comes with the traditional territory of marriage.
The size, however, is not.
Nowhere does it say the diamond size equals a man’s love or commitment. There are so many other factors in buying a diamond, including clarity and color. I suspect a better quality diamond will cost more, therefore, the carat size might be smaller. Wouldn’t you want something that’s high-quality over a cheap stone filled with flaws?
Women, what do you think?
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Introducing Cat Chat
Cat, do you have to be a woman to comment on this thread today? (haha)
I’d say first, ask her friends if it “really” matters or not. And ask the friend of hers that you trust really knows her.
If indeed it isn’t that important for her… dude, lock that down! …and CONGRATS!
ok, i’m not a woman. but i am a big fan of them. so:
the alternative engagement declarations you listed must have many guys rushing to you now, eager to fall down on one knee and pledge eternal love and devotion.
a check of the archives also reveals that, in the past you have stated that you consider yoursel a ‘cheap date’ who can be just as happy splitting a pizza and a pitcher as dolling up for a night at Morton’s
bonus, cha ching, bing and bing again. the amazing Turk predicts. 2011 will mark the end of your bachelorettehood.
@turkfontaine Love your confidence! You know something I don’t…?
of course size matters. a woman’s level of insistance on having a large,squeezed lump of coal on her finger is directly proportional to the amount of agony you’ll recieve a couple of years down the road.
Quality of quantity… a diamond thats colorless and flawless looks way nicer than one that’s just big. Those aren’t cheap either though.
If you’re gonna spend that much to get noticed, buy an engagement car instead. Who’s gonna beat that?
I understand the pressure — and while the girlfriend might not “care” about the size — you have to wonder about the moment when her friends ask to see it. If they’re true friends, they’ll genuinely like the ring. And if the girlfriend is totally confident in herself, her man and her ring, then that’ll show through to. He could also think about lab-created diamonds. They’re cheaper since they’re not mined from the deserts of Africa and the quality is supposed to be just as good — he could give her this great story about he didn’t want to give her a “blood diamond”. At any rate, engagement rings nowadays come in so many styles that make the diamond appear larger than it actually is, like a pave style (small diamonds surrounding center stone) or the quad style (you know, the 4 small princess diamonds that look like one big princess cut diamond?). Besides, it really shouldn’t matter about the size of the ring, but that he put a lot of thought and heart into choosing it. And in 5 or 10 years, you can always updgrade!
Size is only one factor in the diamond. Cut, style, and a whole host of other factors come into play when considering a ring. The right cut of good quality can make a small diamond look a lot bigger.
I’ve never been a big fan of the big honkin solitaire…I’ve always said that if I got engaged, I’d rather it be well-designed than big. In recent years, a few of my girlfriends have asked to NOT have a diamond ring for various reasons — often the cost, but also other practical reasons or because they don’t want a “blood diamond.”
@Melissa808 I forgot about the whole “blood diamond” thing. I wonder if women know/care… Hmm… maybe another blog topic…
Ok, i’m a guy but I have been down the aisle twice. The first time, I could not afford much of an engagement ring. The second time I could. Even if it doesn’t matter now, it may later. Given the inquirer’s dilemma, my recommendation is to offer a plain gold band without any stone at all. If it matters a few years down the road, the married couple can pick out a nice big diamond ring or other expensive jewelry for her, if the finances allow and all other bills are paid.
I recommend against a seriously flawed large stone and also against a nice small stone at this point. Either would be a waste of money that is needed for other things. Love the Tiffany & Co., box in the photo.
I could not stop laughing. Cat your substitute for a diamond ring was a Super Size Flat Screen and you’d say yes… 🙂 and I thought size did not matter. So the dude with the smaller Mac doesn’t stand a chance… OK, being silly. I think wedding rings, weddings, and other symbolic gestures should be done away with. But then again I am a guy.
@dbjack I agree, actually. I’m practical to a fault, and I like the idea of spending money on a trip to Italy instead.
@Cat @dbjack An Italian holiday is money well spent!
@Cat You would choose Italy, I think I would go with Greece. But frankly anything is better than spending it on a wedding, I’d go to Maui before I’d do that. Wonder what would happen if you started an elope thread….
The title through me off, you talking about diamonds. 😆
@M Yeah M… she’s talkin’ ’bout rocks… jewels… does that make it clearer? Hahaha! Prob’ly not, LOL!
@MaxMaxMax @M I didn’t realize the double entendre! LOL!
When I bought wongie808 her ring, I went for quality over quantity. In hind sight, maybe I should have went for the biggest rock I could find for the price? I don’t regret it, though. The ring matches her hand and suits her perfectly, plus it’s stunning!
@johngarcia wongie808 Sounds like you made the right choice!
Something for everyone here–let’s stay in the future nano-realm of screens, radio, cell phones, computers, stepford wives(whoops.. cancel that), semiconductors–get her a blue diamond!
The smaller the better…
I”m diamond illiterate. But Hawaiian jewerly. In my opinion as a guy, for women it seems the bigger, the better. and the more they wear on each arm ( 15, 20 bracelets, they happier they seem to be ) To me, it’s gaudy. but most important thing is keeping women happy, right ????
I have a very modest size ring. It is a half carat but with an almost perfect diamond. My husband, who is traditional, wanted to purchase me a ring. He studied and learned about the 4 c’s. He also went online and found a reputable dealer who does not purchase blood diamonds (though honestly at that point, I had no idea). My only request was that I wanted platinum for the metal. Thus, the cost of the ring was probably a little more. My other request was I wanted a plain platinum band. So my rings may not be jazzy and seem a little old-fashioned but I love them for what they represent. I don’t care what other people think because they are mine. Admittedly some women think the bigger the better. More power to them.