Disaster proposal and engagement ring

by Ania
(Australia)

I feel like I need to add a disclaimer before I start so here it is:

I'm not a very materialistic person but I, like most girls, want a reasonable engagement ring since it's going to be on my hand for the rest of my life and I'd mentioned a couple of times that I'd prefer a .3 - .5 carat, quality diamond over a big, dull one.

We had been together for 2 1/2 years and I had an inkling he was going to propose while we were on holidays (on a usually sunny, tropical island), so started getting excited wondering which of all of the cute and simple ways he might pop the question, since I'd also mentioned I would never want anything elaborate or public.

We hopped off the plane and went straight to our hotel where it started raining almost immediately, then my partner brought me over to the gazebo where place settings were being set, and the staff proceeded to serve us microwaved McDonald's french fries, microwaved diced vegetables (the veg that comes in frozen packets) and a huge beef steak (I'm vegetarian).

The staff then turned on soppy romantic music on the CD player so loud I couldn't actually hear my partner talking, so went inside to turn it down, and the rain turned into a full-blown thunderstorm, complete with lighting. It was raining so heavily the gazebo was literally leaking water onto my dinner plate. I said I wanted to go inside and he insisted we stay out there, and I realised he was going to propose then and there, under the leaking gazebo over a dead, crumbed cow.

So I took myself inside anyway hoping he would wait until perhaps better weather, only for the staff to come back in and turn the music up again (in the room I was in), and my partner went to the next room and came back, sat on the coffee table, opened the box with a .3 carat, visibly yellow diamond ring and yelled 'will you marry me?' over that awful, sad theme song from one of the Twilight movies.

I froze, realising the moment I had been looking forward to pretty much from the moment I had met him was here, and I felt nothing but dread and disappointment. He hadn't gotten down on one knee, he hadn't told me why he wanted to marry me, he was just holding this ring out like he was expecting it to do all of the work for him. I was gutted.

About 5 months earlier we moved to the desert so he could pursue his career and a $130,000 salary, while I had to close my business not long after moving there due to not being able to run it from the desert. I feel as though the ring and the proposal was a slap in the face to the huge sacrifice I had made for him to earn the money he had been wanting to make for so long. I nearly died when he told me how much he'd spent ($5,500, not a massive amount, but far too much for what it was) and I asked him how many stores he'd gone to before buying it. Two. I spent more time and effort looking for new shoes for him last week than he did looking for the one piece of jewellery that I am supposed to wear until the day I die.

He ended up returning the ring when he realised he'd essentially been sold junk and actually lost quite a bit of money from it, and told me to choose another ring (from a different jeweller), but even when we picked it up he could have made that moment special and instead I had to put it on myself while he just threw his credit card across the counter towards the jeweller (literally) asking which card he could use for the lowest credit card fee.

Since the proposal I feel like I've built a huge amount of resentment towards him, I tried bringing it up when we returned from our holiday and he said we might as well break up and that he'd just gotten nervous and I've picked the situation to pieces. I am really trying to see it from his point of view, I can only imagine how scary it is to propose, but afterwards he actually said he was pretty confident he knew what my answer would be anyway. I understand nerves sometimes get the better of everyone but is there ever any excuse for putting next to no effort or research into choosing a ring that is supposed to sit on my hand for the rest of my life, and proposing?

It honestly isn't about the price to me, it never has been, had he chosen a cheaper ring but actually thought out the proposal and told me WHY he wanted to marry me I know I would feel entirely different about it all, but all he sees is that I'm ungrateful that he has spent so much money on both rings, regardless of the fact I have told him time and time again that money doesn't, and won't ever, buy me.

Today I told him I didn't feel like we were even close to being ready for marriage, let alone children (despite the fact I'm starting to run out of time to have children), and I was calling off the engagement. I feel confident I made the right decision to call it (just the engagement, not the relationship) off, but he once again said we might as well break up (he makes empty threats a lot). Opinions?

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A bad proposal is not always bad
by: Paula

He may of meant no harm. Sometimes we just don't think about how the other person will feel when we are new to a serious relationship.

Girls dream about their proposals for years, for guys it's just a question... You need to figure out why he acted as he did then you will be equipped to deal with your relationship and understand him better. The sooner you figure out how the two of you fit together, the better. You might also find out that the two of you are not a great fit, but take comfort in knowing that if that is the case then it's better to learn that sooner rather than later.

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It's for the best.
by: Anonymous

Thanks for sharing your story so honestly. I'm sure after I post this response I will think of other things to say.

I think you made the right decision. I love everything about love and to find that one person we want to be with forever is hard. Not as hard as a diamond, but close.

To hold on to resentments over the lack of thought behind the proposal sounds like you might have other disappointments waiting in the future. We can't make another do what we wish would come naturally to them. I want emotional events and reactions to be organic and not forced.

To me, finding "the one" is like a diamond, it's rare and beautiful and sparkles. Not many are perfect, but they do exist. It sounds like this wasn't your diamond of a mate.

Hard to let a relationship go, but so important to honor yourself, what you want and what's best for him too. I hope you both find the right fit.

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