OMG, your lotus ring is like SO HUGE.
My fiancé gave me an engagement ring that I absolutely love. It is a unique eco-friendly band accompanied by a nice rock which is really just icing on the cake and just that. What I really value is the artistic design of the band itself as no two designs are alike.

When I shared my new engagement ring excitement with a girlfriend, I explained to her the artistic design/eco materials' significance of the ring. She interrupted and asked what size my rock was. Upon learning that I have a 1 carat diamond, she then complained to her man for not getting her a diamond of such size. She appeared to have no interest in my story of the ring design itself and was only concerned with rock sizes.

How do I politely school/check other people who are obviously unappreciative of artistic eco-friendly designs, and are more concerned with what is on top?

First, a slight caution: you're walking a delicate line when you call attention to something (in this case a ring) and then get frustrated when people don't admire it in the ways you want.

You add an extra layer of complexity when you discuss the size of the diamond you supposedly don't care about.

See, when you talk exact carats, you're getting into the dick-size game, whether you mean to or not. It's sort of like pulling down your pants and saying, “Oh that? My 10.75-inch-long penis? Ignore that — I'm trying to tell about you my scrotal piercing!”

Many of us are conditioned to fixate on cock rock size, and when you provide an exact size measurement, you're not helping your “it doesn't matter to me!” cause.

So — the next time a friend asks you how big the diamond is, if you really don't care, just shrug and say “I don't actually know.” Then get right back to talking about the artistry and eco-friendliness of the design.

You're not only refusing to play the numbers game, you're also making it clear that it's of oh-so little importance to you that you don't even know the exact size — which will hopefully deflate some of the consumer lust from the situation.

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Comments on Diamond as dick size

  1. OMG, that’s exactly what it is. I was always taken aback when people would ask me what size my diamond was, and I always said just what you suggest: I don’t know. But several people – not just one – have grabbed my hand and examined my ring before pronouncing “Very nice” as if it had just passed some kind of test or something.

  2. Great feedback/advice, thank you! Next time someone asks of size, I will simply respond with, “I don’t know.” It’s probably the safest response I can go with!

    Thanks again.

    • Something I’ve learned working in the ethical fashion industry is very few people care about the origins of their clothing and accessories — a surprising few. Yes, tell them about its story and go with the “I don’t know” with rock size, but make sure to tell them the jeweler’s name and then flip through their Instagram account saying “look how beautiful all of their rings are…and they’re eco-friendly to boot!” is the single best way to support the ethical and sustainable jewelry industry.

  3. …Or you could answer “Oh that? That’s my 10.75-inch-long cock — er, I’m sorry. What were we talking about again?” That’s SURE to get ’em off the subject. 🙂

  4. You can always walk around with a ring pop. Think about it: When someone comments on your ring, you can say “Would you like a taste?”

  5. i told my fiance v firmly many years ago that there was room for only one ring on my hands. my wedding ring.

  6. It is driving me a little nuts that most of the answers on here have to do with lying. “I dont know” is a blatant lie. I prefer to say “Oh, well, that doesnt really matter to me, I am more excited about the design.” My ring (yes i have a diamond ring and i LOOOOVE IT) was hand made by my mother for my grandmother when she got re-married in the late 60’s. It was the first ring that my mother ever made so it is not cemetrical and i have not ever seen anything even close to it. When my lovely lady (if she is looking i mean my rough tough butch) told my mother that she was going to ask me to marry her my mother gave it to her. long story short she wanted there to be something new mixed in with the old so she had some work done on it and bought a raher large diamond (wholesale from an old dealer my father knew) to put in it. When someone asks me about the weight i either tell them and then get back to the story or i dont tell them and get back to the story. I decide what is important about my ring. There is no need to lie.

    Holy shit, that was really snarky. sorry. I am just easily excited :o\

    • Oh wow…. there’s such a cool history behind that ring. It’s so touching, too. I would be a lot more interested in knowing that story than about what carat anyone’s diamond is!

      I also agree on the lying bit. I tend to just say the carat and go back into talking about the design or the fact that my fiance went into a section of town they really hate to get it since they knew I’d like it (that’s the part that really shows that my to-be knows me so well).

  7. Seeing as how there are no diamonds that are actually eco-friendly…I went for the Herkimer diamond which is a very clear quartz crystal. It keeps you out of the c/rock size game and focuses on the ecofriendliness. Personally, I think you’re a little more infatuated with the carat size than you’re leading on to be.

    • I totally agree. Ring conversations can get kind of ugly, because there’s a lot of smugness on either side. “Oh, my ring is a gorgeous antique diamond with a lot of meaning, and yours is just mass-produced crap from Sears” “Well my ring is an Amethyst claddagh that was handmade by a local artist from local silver with local smelting pots. Diamonds are SO evil and bad for the environment.” Everyone’s rings sound lovely, but you don’t HAVE to explain why yours is better than the “bad” rings or the “mass-produced WIC rings.” This conversation isn’t even about what YOUR ring looks like — it’s about how diamonds have become class/status symbols.

      • I agree. There’s no right or wrong or better or worse ring. Competition over who’s ring is the most eco-friendly/cheap/sentimental etc is just as bad as competition over who has the biggest diamond.

  8. see, i’m kind of like a magpie and am attracted to anything sparkly and therefore looooove my ring. However, I did get my fiance one…I never really thought it was fair that I got a rock and he didn’t.

    I haven’t actually had anyone ask me for my measurements yet, but I think I would also go with the whole “I don’t know” thing…I mean, it’s a little rude right? It’s like asking what if cost. I don’t go around asking people how much their earrings cost…

  9. My ring is an antique European solitaire from the 1930s. The diamond is a quarter carat, and the band is pink gold. We got it at an estate jeweler. When people see it, they most often call it “cute” and seem to think it’s rather sad that I couldn’t afford a better ring.

    That’s never made any sense to me. My ring has history. It isn’t ostentatious. It cost $500, which we pooled our money to afford. To me, it’s perfect.

  10. My ring is, as said above, a 1/4 ct., 4-prongs, on a thin band, regular engagement ring. At about $300, it was what we could afford, and I love it.

    Surprisingly, the only person who’s asked the size was the lady at the “showroom” when she was taking my resizing order. I thought the general population would be a lot ruder than that, although I will concede to getting a couple of “cutes”. But fuck ’em, if they want me to have a bigger/better ring, they should have contributed if they care so much.

  11. I actually don’t know anything about diamonds, so if I say “I don’t know” it’s completely honest.

    Actually, I’ve made it perfectly clear that I don’t want a diamond. I don’t even know if I want a stone in mine. I do want a ring, but it doesn’t have to have a stone in it for me to be happy. I suppose if it doesn’t have a stone I won’t get anyone asking what size it is…but I’m sure I’ll get the “you poor thing” comment.
    Because Omigod, every woman wants a big-ass diamond! /sarcasm


  12. What I don’t understand is some of the judgment associated with it. If people choose not to have an engagement ring, more power to them, but why does it make you less of a person to value tradition? Or, to just want an excuse to buy someone you love something sparkley to commemorate the moment when you asked them to be your partner in life. If it’s not for you, then great, but why say others are less for liking it?

    • I agree. There’s nothing wrong with wanting a diamond for tradition’s sake. Diamonds are lovely and sparkly and I get why people like them. I do, however, think people should be mindful of the class/status associations of the diamond (as well as all the problems with diamond-mining and human rights/eco-awareness). There’s so much pressure on the guy to furnish his fiance with a big rock, and on the woman to find a guy who can DO that…for me it reeks of dowry, classism, and conservative gender roles.
      (To clarify — choosing a diamond doesn’t necessarily reek of those things, it’s the SOCIAL PRESSURE to choose a diamond, and a big one, that reeks of those things. If the choice is well-thought-out and freely made, there’s nothing wrong with it at all).

  13. hehe…some traditions/expectations are whack! My Grandma still uses the phrase, “She got her diamond” when someone gets engaged! GAG!! (unless she secretly means ‘she found her one-in-a-million-lifemate’ ~doubtful!)
    Anyhoo…love my Grandma, but some things are ingrained, i guess!

  14. Hey Tammy…I decided that I wanted NO diamond, no stone whatsoever…and I get hella compliments on my heavy-duty wide hammered gold band all the time. It’s my engagement ring, soon to be called “my wedding ring”. Same ring, yo.

    There have been a couple of rude comments such as “that’s not an engagement ring, where’s the diamond?” but for the most part people (especially men) have loved it. Women have been most likely to wrinkle the nose, but whatever. It’s not their ring, it’s mine.

  15. kheh I proposed to my dear, so he gets to wear a ring (an eccentric double-ring I picked up at a mom and pop store). He loves it too. I’m just waiting for the ‘real’ ring. They’ll be simple silver bands.

  16. I have had similar experiences. Some people ask about the 4Cs. I don’t know. I don’t care.

    “But let me tell you about the history…” Some people are interested and some aren’t. Again, I don’t care.

    I have been caught staring at my ring a few times. I will admit to it, but it has nothing to do with the size or stone. I am really excited about what the ring symbolizes.

    I am so freaking giddy that we are getting married! (I never thought I would be so excited about a wedding)

    86 the bows and matching dresses, please!

    • I’ve never been much of a jewellery person and can never remember the 4cs. I picked out my own ring (with a diamond cos I luuurve sprakly) but like you, I have no idea how many carats or the other c’s are. It wasnt something I even looked at when choosing my ring.
      My only criterias were did my fiance like it, was it in our budget and did I love the way it looked/felt on my hand. Nothing else matters.

  17. i love that you totally called that girl out on her veiled excuse for bragging about her carat size. a little self-awareness, pls brides!

  18. I don’t love how you called that bride out. It’s not like 1carat is bragging rights anyway. She knows how big it is and that’s no surprise; most indie brides at least help pick their rings. I’m also not big on just plain lying. Brushing it off by saying you don’t care, fine, and if talking to people you don’t give a crap about, go ahead and lie, but just because it’s not particularly relevant doesn’t mean you’re not going to know. H3ll, knowing diamond sizing could just be a result of understanding how to make jewelry, like my dad. And as for no diamonds being ecofriendly, it’s true, that’s not complete bull. They have to be harvested somehow. But Canadian diamonds, for example, do an excellent job caring for the environment when removing their rocks. You can get extra eco-cred for choosing not to dig up pieces of the earth, but don’t pretend like you’re a goddess because you did what you wanted.

  19. My ring isn’t very special visually…other than it has a wanna-be black hills gold look to it..and it’s no longer a diamond in the center. It still has diamonds, just like teeny ones.
    It is one of those mass produced gold and diamond rings sold in a department store or a –Mart store. I don’t know which. See, my Dad bought this ring for my mom. This was their wedding and engagement ring. It was welded together shortly after the wedding. My dad paid about $300 for it in the late eighties.
    My parents divorced after 7 years. Then, my dad died when I was 14. My mom did drugs (she’s clean now). She pawned her ring at some point. My grandmother bought the ring out of pawn and had a ruby put in it, as it was now her ring and she had always wanted a birthstone ring.
    When I got the ring, my grandma handed it to me, not my husband, and I had to wear it on my pinky until we could find an affordable place to get it resized. It was four sizes too small.
    People rarely comment on it, and when they do they are obviously under-impressed. And I feel crappy about it. I feel like I should have a better ring… Then I remember that this ring is a family heirloom. It tells the story about the love my parents shared and the love my grandmother has for her daughter and grandchildren (the first to marry would get their pick of my mom’s 2 wedding rings), and finally, of the love my husband and I share. Not to mention that I miss my father terribly and this was a nice way to include him in our wedding (and marriage).
    My ring has a lot of history. In fact, it could be a rather depressing reminder of all the shit my life has been. However, I love my ring because of the all that shit, and because I never thought that I’d be blessed enough to be in love.

    MORAL OF THE STORY: The best way I have heard wedding rings described is something to the effect of the rings are a symbol of the commitment made between two people as they get married. The rings aren’t the commitment; they are simply the outward sign of what has occurred.

    • I know this is a super-old post…but I still think this is an absolutely beautiful story.

  20. My “engagement ring” is actually my promise ring. We’ve been together for 4 years and for our one year anniversary when we had more money to toss around he got me a promise ring 14k and .2 kt diamond ring, he proposed to me in a bar and i am not emabarassed or ashamed to tell ppl we re-used my promise ring cuz the ring doenst matter. Altho i will be honest and say that i love having a ring with a diamond, i am crow/magpie like and like the shiny things too! *blushes*

  21. I’ve been asked a couple of times, and have been able to respond in complete honesty “I don’t know and I don’t care, it’s exactly the style I like best and he picked it without my knowing!”

  22. hmm. interesting thread of comments. I have a blue opal- and most of the time people don’t recognize that it’s an engagement ring even though it’s on the right finger (i actually had to ask around about that one. Haha! had no idea!). I actually had the lady at the wedding dress boutique say: “Oh hey! your mood changed- it’s blue now!”. LOL, I had to inform the BRIDAL boutique lady that no, in fact it’s not a mood ring but my engagement ring… haha. It is very interesting that this topic of ring/competition has sparked a lot of debate.
    I also am not a fan of lying. But I do believe that LOVE is the most important part to a ring/no ring/bracelet/necklace/symbol.
    That and Canadian diamonds are AWESOME. 🙂

  23. when my boyfriend (now fiance) told me he was likely to propose but couldnt afford a nice diamond I told him to get a fake, and just dont tell anyone. He was shocked at the idea, as his rule with buying jewelery is to buy the best, no fakes, no low quality. I showed him and got what looks like a 2 carat diamond flanked by 1 carat stones. really, its all fake.

  24. While there are definitley brides who put too much importance on carat size, I also think its okay to be excited to share your engagement ring because of what it means to you and your partner.

    My great grandparents gave my fiance a family ring with which to propose to me. My great grandmother actually knew very little about her mother’s ring, and tracking down its history was so much fun. As students, we couldn’t afford any ring, so it is priceless in our eyes.

    On another note, another bride I know had her diamonds lab created to coincide with her beliefs, and she stands by those beliefs when others (including her grandmother) try to tell her her rings are not real. Not sure what they mean, its right there on her finger ;D

  25. Canadian diamonds aren’t all that great. The diamond companies are currently getting permission to dump all their toxic crud into living lakes up north. Lakes that won’t be living for much longer after that.

  26. a guy in my office gave his fiance a 1 carat diamond ring and another girl in her office gave her e-ring back to her fiance and told him he had to get a bigger one!
    I have never wanted a diamond ring (I like emeralds) and I didn’t have an engagement ring, or a proposal exactly….yet we are about to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary.
    because my groom still hadnt bought a ring the afternoon before the wedding, his mom offered him her grandmother’s wedding band because “nobody else wants it”.
    the guy has felt so guilty for not buying me a diamond, that this past Christmas, he gave me a gold band with 10 small diamonds in it – it sparkles, it’s beautiful, but I can’t help but feel awful about the guilt he felt for not giving me a diamond. E-ring, no E-ring, do what works for YOU, but dont make other people feel awful for not doing what works for YOU.

  27. I had my fiance’s ring custom made- and used a ruby instead of a diamond. Its an engagement/wedding band set- the bands are wavy and either fit together or (if turned) just look cool juxtaposed together. Its unique, its beautiful, its more moral than a diamond ring from debeers, she loves it…(heres a picutre

    But after giving the ring…I feel guilty that the ruby is too small. What the hell.

    • I think it’s beautiful. If the ruby were bigger, I don’t think the ring would be as beautiful. What I like about the ring is how delicate it looks, and a giant rock would make it look ostentatious rather than lovely and delicate.

  28. My baby gave me his great grandfathers cross to wear till out wedding day. Its handmade from silver and has a tiny little topaz in it. I do wear a silver ring with some CZ in it but thats just to satisfy my desire to wear a ring until we elope, well if we ever get $40 we need for the stupid license

  29. I like Sara’s story. Sounds like a lovely ring, Sara, no matter what it looks like.

    My SIL’s ring was peridot and sterling silver, and she wears it now on her right hand; $35 was all my brother could afford. Their wedding bands are also silver. My mother never had one at all (they could afford one now but she doesn’t care about it), and her wedding band was made of 12k dental gold by my uncle!

    I used to work in an office full of young women and engagement rings were definitely a pissing contest. Solitaires were no longer good enough; they were shooting for three-stones. One girl had one picked out that cost $4500, never mind that neither she nor her fiancé had “career” jobs or any savings. It bordered on delusional.

    I’m not [very] opposed to engagement rings, but there’s no way I’d let a guy spend 1/3 of a new car on one for me. Yeah, I’d be excited about the engagement, but not so much the ring.

  30. I agree with the comments about this being a “reversed pissing contest”.

    I love my ring and I make no apologies about what my fiance could or could not afford. To some it may be extravagant, and to others modest, but it’s on my god damn finger and that’s all that matters.

    I also have no qualms about sharing carat size, no matter what the intention of the question. I’m proud of my ring, simple as that.

    The best advice I received is to meet snarkiness with snarkiness. Guaranteed to piss most people off…… or at very least shut them the hell up. Don’t apologize for what you love!!

  31. My goodness there are a few pointed comments here.
    I don’t think having/not having a ring/diamond is a big deal, but I have been feeling pretty crappy because of how other people treat it. “How many carats” and people talking about how big theirs are. I loved my ring dearly when I first got it. In fact, it was exactly what I wanted, except with real diamonds instead of fake (I didn’t have the heart to ask him to exchange it). But women AND MEN make me feel self conscious about it, and that’s what really upsets me. Why can’t I just like what I like, and that be the end of it? Why does everything have to be all about appearances and socially approved “beauty.” Why the hell is bigger better anyway? It just gets in the way. *sigh*

    • I can relate to this. I love my ring- I was surprised by the proposal, and shocked that he even had a ring! Then, several other people I work with got engaged after me and were rubbing their ginormous rings in my face- making me feel self conscious of mine! WTF? I then realized that I don’t care what they say- I loved how it happened and everything that it represents. Still, it’s frustrating to argue with the social stigma and the judgy looks.

  32. Huh. I've been engaged for about 4 months now, and I can honestly say that only one person has ever inquired about the size of my diamond – my friend's boyfriend (now fiance). Turns out his question was more research-based than personal! Ha! The rest of my friends and family members have almost unanimously responded with – that's SO "you". Really, that's the best compliment I could receive.

  33. Heh. I avoided the ring drama altogether and proposed to my fiance with a watch. Later on, I bought myself a similar styled watch, so we have our engagement watches. I tell people that I'm engaged but never get asked about my ring. Then again, I usually start off with "I propsed to him.", so I guess the ring becomes an afterthought when they hear I turned tradition on its head. And since I'm only going to have one ring, I'll be getting a band with diamonds and sapphires (mostly likely from Brilliant Earth).

    • Was fully waiting for the Brilliant Earth name to be brought in. Looooveee their jewelry and am lucky enough to have a wonderful husband who worked with their designers to custom design my engagement ring. It’s beautiful and sturdy (I’m clumsy) and modern and perfectly us… The materials could not matter less to me but to work with a company like BE and to know where my ring was sourced and made, puts my little Eco-self into giggle fits. It’s perfectly us represented in a ring, all that matters to me.

  34. I actually only have ever had one rude comment on my rings (generally if other people even notice it, they say "oh how pretty", like a normal person would).

    It was actually a friend of my husband's. He asked to see my ring, then turned to the husband and said "You didn't get her a diamond?" I mean…. really, who says that? I have had a few people ask why he picked Tanzanite (it it your birthstone, etc. etc.), which I think falls under reasonable questions (he happened to like the color, actually). But anything that's effectively asking "how much did you pay for that thing?" is just a ridiculous thing to ask.

    • My engagement ring is also tanzanite, because we both liked the color. We picked it out together.

      • Mine is an amethyst ring, one we picked out together. When I get questions about the lack of a diamond I simply reply that I have never liked them and didn’t want one. It’s not that one killed my puppy or anything, but they’ve always been boring and over done to me. And starkly colorless.

        Almost anyone who tries to judge tends to change the subject or walk away. Hopefully it gets a few of them thinking.

  35. So I'm planning on proposing to my guy over Halloween wknd while I'm visiting him in Canada. We were previously engaged but this time is for good (long story) It's only fair that I propose this time right? I mean he did it last time. But is it weird that I LOVE my wedding band (it's from Circa1930s, I love antique things) from last time and sort of just want to use that instead of an engagment ring and then at some point have my diamond set (antique 3/4carat fancy canary 90yrold that I inherited)? Actually my ring of choice if I didn't already have a diamond would be from Green Karat, the First Fig ring but I can't justify spending extra money when we have immigration costs to contend with. Well I guess the fact that I'm saying this outloud probably means I'm decided already but feedback is always good! I'm just soooo excited! : )

  36. I wear a bigger diamond than most people I know – the ring belonged to my boyfriend’s godmother, who had extravagant taste in jewelry. They were very close, and before she passed away a few years ago, she insisted he take the ring for his future bride.

    It made me a little self conscious at first, something so big and sparkly, but once I got used to it, it was fine. When anyone says anything about it, I simply explain that it belonged to a beloved godmother, and everyone focuses on that instead.

  37. We chose a gold and diamond engagement ring (or titanium and diamond in my partner's case) because while it wasn't that important to us, we found that we really liked the idea of being the godmother in Morgan's story and passing the ring on to a future godchild/child/grandchild/etc to use.
    We wouldn't have spent as much just on ourselves, but really liked the thought that it would be something that a future generation could keep and use in its own right, or sell and have enough money to serve a useful purpose.

  38. Wow. Definitely some strong opinions here!

    I've been engaged before, as has my FH. The first time I got a ring I didn't like. Which served me right because I shouldn't have been getting engaged at that point anyway, but that's beside the point. I disliked the ring because of the style. Sure, the diamonds were tiny, but that didn't matter. The fact that it had a claw that stuck way out and resulted in holes in my fiance's arm or scratches, or getting caught on mittens was the problem. I think I have since lost it in one of my moves, but it was not all that sentimental to me, because it didn't fit who I was, or am.

    My FH spent way too much on the last engagement ring he bought. We agreed long ago that I would kill him if he spent that much. We don't have a ton of money and there are better things to spend it on.

    I haven't gotten my ring yet, but I know it will be diamonds set into the band. I like "anniversary" style bands much better. I live in Canada, on the Prairies. It gets cold, and mittens and gloves are required. I don't want to have my ring get caught every time I put them on or take them off. I don't wear much jewelry so it would take forever to get used to having something that stuck up. My FH informed me that he got the ring he did because he wants to show me how he feels about me. That's what matters. I'm hoping for an inscription, something for just us. He is proposing, but I wanted to get him something as well to return the commitment. He makes more money than I do, plus I am in school, so I wanted to find something in my price range that was meaningful: an earring. We are going to put together an earring for him with probably a silver ring in the proper gauge and a silver charm. Etsy is my saviour!

    For me it's about exchanging something meaningful. An e-ring is meaningful for him to give to me. It could have been something else if he had had a brilliant idea, but I do rather like the tradition of wearing a ring. An earring is meaningful for me to give to him. He has enough rings already and has been searching for a good earring or two to replace the ones the piercer put in. So we are happy about it and I can't wait to be able to put together his earring, and to receive my ring.

    • This is very similar to my situation. I have never been a big fan of diamonds, except as accent stones. My first husband knew this, and knew that I really preferred sapphires, but proposed with a diamond ring anyway. Why? Because his mother gave it to him for free. It wasn’t a family piece with good history (though that is what I told people). He just didn’t feel that I was worth even a little bit of him denying himself immediate gratification through spending money on trivial things for himself. The concept of saving was completely foreign to him. One of many reasons why he is the ex.

      My current fiancée understood all that, and got me exactly what I wanted. A natural blue sapphire solitare with diamond accents set in white gold. We picked it out together, but he is the one who paid for it. While I love my e-ring to pieces, the fact that he made that sacrifice for me is what won my heart.

      Oh, and the same weekend we got engaged, I bought him a sausage grinder attachment for our Kitchen Aid mixer. He still thinks he got the better end of the deal! 🙂

  39. the worst is when they ask how much it cost. I always thought that was rude! I’m so glad I don’t now how much it cost!

  40. I disagree that engagement rings are worthless. We joke about it being his “leash” or “mark”, but for me it was a symbol that he had decided that this was for real. And, shallow as it may be, with me having a son and it being a HUGE step for him, I needed that symbol at the time. It’s sapphire because I really don’t like diamonds. Plus it’s my birthstone, so win-win.

    And it’s not wasted. Lots of people get wedding bands that fit with their rings in a “set”. With the cut of my ring I can’t do that, but I’m having my entire engagement ring remade by a jeweler that specializes in handcrafted Celtic designs. He’ll reset my sapphire and (tiny) diamonds into a Celtic knot band design that my fiance and I chose. I’ll get to have my cake and eat it too.

  41. Getting my (now) husband to have a say in the ring/wedding was like pulling teeth so anything he did say tended to be taken as gospel. So when he said “I don’t think you should have a rock any bigger than [that]. It would look too big on your slender fingers,” that meant no big rock. Turns out that there’s a limited selection of blue diamonds and the one that had the vibrancy of color I wanted also happened to be .5K so the size kind of set itself. But I like being able to counter any comment on size with “Yeah, that’s the one thing Andrew was really specific about wanting – he thought it would look better on me.” It shows that the size of the stone still is a reflection of him thinking about me and being involved – just not in the way people expect.

    Truth be told though, size didn’t tend to come up much. Most people just go “What stone is that?” because it’s striking and awesome.

  42. I have to say it does seem like a reverse pissing contest. I see so many people here against what they consider cliche. Personally I think its sad. Diamonds are my absolute favorite stone and yup I think the bigger the better, not because I want to impress people but because I LOVE that when I catch my ring in the right light it shoots off rainbows everywhere and it seems to glow in the dark. You don’t get the fire diamonds are known for if they’re tiny. If he couldn’t have afforded to buy me a diamond that was going to look fabulous I would have him buy a garnet (my 2nd fav) that would have. I do think its stupid people who just want a big rock to impress people but some girls love the traditional round cut solitaire. I actually love oval cut solitaires. I like simple and elegant. My ring however is not, it was a collaboration between myself and my fiance and is a 3 stone ring with a split shank and 3 sided eternity band (did I mention I love diamonds lol). It is set in platinum and people are always impressed by that but actually I hate white and yellow gold (like rose gold but wanted something neutral). White gold always needs replating so we went for platinum instead, plus its stronger and I’m really hard on my hands. I guess my point of this whole long statement is don’t judge a ring as thoughtless just because its traditional. If it was what she desperately wanted no matter how cliche its not thoughtless.

    • Actually, there is a palladium-white gold alloy that doesn’t require rhodium plating. It comes out as a slightly dusky, dark silvery color that I absolutely love in my ring. 🙂

      Pure palladium rings are out there, too, at a much lower cost than (but barely distinguishable from) platinum. It is, however, a difficult metal to work with due to its high melting point, so it can be a challenge to find jewelers who carry such rings.

  43. Honestly I’m surprised that its even come up. I’ve had lots of comments on my ring and its definitely not tiny but size has never come up. Its a 3 stone with 1.5 carat center and two .75 on the side but nobody has ever asked just oohed and aahed which I like because I think its fab too.

  44. Since we proposed to each other, we decided to buy rings for each other. We got them for $20 each through a new age catalog. They have “love now and forever” in calligraphy in Gaelic on them, and the translation inside. So they are very fitting to our no frills, authentic, worldly devotion to each other. I’ve never been one personally for big rocks (don’t have anything against anyone who does!) so the bands with a Celtic inscription on them fits much better for us (My boyfriend is fully Celtic, and I’m Scandinavian). Of course we’re the kind of weird people who would rather spend a weekend camping out in an old castle without electricity than, say, a beach resort with the works.
    I guess to me, the ring thing doesn’t matter to anyone but the two of you, and reflects how well you know each other. We both knew going into it we weren’t expecting flashy jewelry, that just isn’t our cup of tea collectively. Not that there’s anything wrong with having a pretty rock on your hand, if it is! 🙂

  45. When my Mom married my step-father in 1967, they could only afford plain gold bands. However, she always wanted a simple round solitaire engagement ring to go with it. So, in the late 1980’s I convinced my step-dad to finally get her one as a surprise. He agreed and, armed with my knowledge of having worked in a jewelery store, I set out to a diamond wholesaler to get her an engagement ring from him.

    At that time (and still true today), I was more concerned with getting her the best quality stone for our/his budget rather than the biggest. And, I succeed in finding a nice sized stone that is stunningly clear and she absolutely LOVED it. She was soooo happy and wore it with pride for years.

    Fast forward twenty years, and when there is casual talk of me and the boyfriend getting married I mention that he will have it easy in the ring department because all I want is my mother’s engagement ring. (My stepdad unfortunately passed away in 2002.) And, last year when he proposed, he held out to me my Mom’s ring which she was delighted to pass down to us.

    So, when people ask to see my ring I immediately tell them how much I love it because it was my Mom’s, and the story of how I picked it out for her over twenty years ago. Nobody has yet to comment on the size or the cost or anything other than how priceless it is because of its history. So, although I know EVERY last detail about it from size to clarity to color to cut proportion to cost, it matters not at all. The only bearing the size has is with regard to having it properly reset into another setting. We are having the stone reset into a matched engagement / wedding band and we are then having my sister’s birthstone put into the original setting for her so that we both carry forward a part of it.

    Wow, long story short, it’s how much you love the ring or the meaning behind the ring that matters the most. And, usually, if you share your reasons for loving it with other people, they’ll love it too. And, if they don’t, that’s their problem.

  46. While at the gas station today, my fiance was rummaging through the Ring Pops on the counter. The clerk said something to him about a Ring Pop being the best bang for your buck if you were to propose with one. My fiance said he smiled and said, “Yeah, actually, that’s what I did.”
    I have a BFA in jewelry and metalsmithing, so buying me a ring wasn’t an option. I had designed a ring but was waiting for him to propose before I made it, while he didn’t want to propose without a ring, so…
    When pulled out a little cardboard box with a watermelon Ring Pop stuck to the inside (darn humidity!), I couldn’t stop laughing. Later, when we told my parents, they thought we were playing a joke on them. I pulled out my hand with the ring on it as proof. I know what you’re thinking–“Oh, yeah, a giant candy ring will REALLY convince them!” Well, it didn’t. I had to tell my dad about a dozen times that the whole thing was for real. I don’t wear the Ring Pop, obviously–it ended up getting stuck to my cat and is now a puddle of green sugary goo. (What the hell am I going to do with it? I don’t have a clue.)
    I do have to say that my fiance was initially pretty worried about what people would think about him giving me a Ring Pop as an engagement ring. He said, “You have to tell people why it’s made out of candy.” I assured him that it was okay. If somebody doesn’t “get” it after the explanation, then you just don’t worry about it. I loved the Ring Pop, and it only cost 50 cents. Maybe he thought he was getting off too easy.
    I think the responses we’ve gotten from telling the story have really helped him relax about the whole deal. Now he’s worried about me actually getting the dang thing finished…or even started. The wedding’s not till the end of August. Plenty of time, riiiight? 🙂

  47. Ahhhh… the great ring debate. Is it eco-friendly or not? Is it a family heirloom or not? Do you just LOVE diamonds (or rubies or emeralds, or whatever…). A ring is a symbol… a never ending circle… given in good faith as a promise. Your ring should be special to you (and your partner). You should be happy with your ring. If SIZE is important to you… fine, whatever. If platinum is important… fine.

    I do think it is terribly rude (but, also kinda funny) that there are so many people (mostly females, in my experience) that are so VOCAL about other people’s rings. The first time I was married… we were young and still in college and could only afford a very basic 1/3 carat diamond in a very basic yellow gold setting. But, I loved that ring— I was always surprised when someone would comment on how small it was… ohhh, it’s so cute…oh, it is so petite…. when are you going to get a bigger one?

    Now, I am older and recently married my true love (he too, has been married before). He really liked the idea of doing something different and unique. We have matching, hand-carved wooden wedding bands. They are absolutely beautiful and feel wonderful on. I have had several comments (as you can imagine). Some kind, and some not so much. My favorite comment though, was from a co-worker who asked (quite seriously) when I was getting my “real ring”– i calmly replied, this is my real ring. She laughed and said, No, really… when are you getting your real ring? ahhhh… some people just do not get it… AND that is ok. I am very happy with my ring. We choose it together. It means something to us and that is all that really matters!!! Our rings were made by david at

  48. OH MY GOD Ariel, could you not have warned us that the scrotal link contained an image? I don’t even have balls, yet I’m feeling pain! LOL

    I think there’s too much importance places on the size of rings instead of the significance. And not everyone even wants a ring, and some people really do want a small stone or plain band, for whatever reason. And these brides and grooms shouldn’t be looked down on or it!

    My ring is a large white sapphire, and it always gets admired first for the size, then faces fall when I proudly say it’s a white sapphire, not a diamond (costing a small fraction of the cost of an equivalent-size diamond is just icing, sapphires hold a special significance to me). I admit I don’t want people thinking I’m sporting a bog ol’ diamond, but it’s also annoying to have it suddenly seem inferior for not being what was originally thought. How should I handle this?

  49. LOL, I mentally screamed, “Oh my god!” and my fiance came out of our bedroom asking if I called him. So I showed him, and he grabbed his crotch and winced. It was funny. I’m not offended, just woke my baby up once I got over the shock and started laughing after the pain from my non-existent sack stopped!

    Great site, and I hope to see my own wedding featured one of these days. After it happens in December anyway!!

  50. I’ve always loved the super-intricate, filigree antique rings. I love diamonds…oooh sparkley!

    I’m way too picky about jewelry, too empathetic to admit that I hate something, and too self-conscious to wear something I hate for the sake of being polite. After several discussions about marriage, considering the above and that my boyfriend was climbing out of debt at the time, I bought my own ring!

    It’s a lovely antique circa 1920’s white gold filigree and diamond ring, solitaire less than .5c, with 2 teensy diamond chips flanking the solitaire. It’s pretty tiny, but I have small hands. It also sparkles like, woah. It’s exactly what I wanted.

    When it arrived I fawned over it a bit and gave it to him. I told him when he was ready, he wouldn’t have to stress about that part. I wanted a proposal, but where the ring came from wasn’t important to me.

    Mostly people fawn over how pretty it is. My people have all commented on how, “me” it is. No one has ever asked the size, but I wouldn’t mind telling someone. The only lie I’ve told is that he picked/bought it for me. It’s what most people we know think.

    Talk about snarkiness…I could have a $10,000 ring and random strangers knowing I paid for it would open a box that I don’t think is anyone’s damned business to look into.

  51. I have no idea what size my diamonds are, I have no idea how much it cost and I have no care to find out. All I care about is the love that represents.

    My partner was serving over in Afghanistan and he had decided he wanted to propose to me when he got back. He managed to contact a jeweller in our hometown and had one designed from a few pictures he liked.

    I dont have a pokey out diamond that catches on everything. I have something that fits my personality, that was made for me from someone who loves me dearly. If it was made out of cubic zirconia it would still mean the same to me 🙂

  52. I have had difficulty with the ring issue. My lover wants to get me a ring that is at least a certain size because he feels he needs to proof his value to me. I insist that I don’t really want one, and would probably lose it anyway. Currently, we have engagement laptops. I have had several ‘fake’ rings that I use to announce visually of our engagement. They have all cost less than $20, because I keep losing them. I am not really a jewelry person, and I use my hands a lot. People have commented on the size of the rocks in my fake jewelry, though. I let them oooh and ahhh with jealousy, then after they make a comment about how they wish they had one as nice as mine, I tell them the truth about it being fake.

  53. Happily no one asked me the size of my diamond. I did notice that the people closest to me hugged me when I said I was engaged, but there were others who grabbed my hand for a closer look. Most people did both, but I paid attention to who did which first. It was interesting, hehe.

  54. Anytime I hear someone commenting on the size of one’s engagement ring, I tell them the story about my mother’s ring. When my parents got engaged, they were poor and Dad couldn’t afford to buy a big ring, so he got her a fairly modest diamond in a yellow gold band. After I was born, Dad surprised Mom with an “upgrade”: he took her ring in and had a much larger diamond put in the setting. A few years ago, their house was broken into and her ring was stolen; Dad again went behind Mom’s back and presented her with a new ring, complete with a rock big enough to sink the Titanic (all I can say is thank God they had insurance)! So when I had people question my engagement ring, which is actually a woven band of smaller diamonds, I not only tell them that I love my ring the way it is, but my parents (who still love each other and have been together for almost 30 years) are on Ring #3!

    • If my fiance took my ring and got the stone switched as a surprise, I’d kill him. My ring just as it is more sentimental and valuable to me than any other rock in the entire world. He gifted me the stone on Christmas before we had the money for the setting. A few days before Christmas he couldn’t find a brown envelope, and then remembered cleaning up the area it was in, so we spent hours in the dumpsters at our old apartment looking for a brown envelope. So many envelopes look the same! He finally told me what was in it, and we quit looking, and then he found it minutes after we walked in the door. So when I opened the jewelry box he hid it in, I pretended it wasn’t there just to try making him panic again. 🙂 So the stone in my ring, which is a white sapphire instead of a diamond, has more meaning to me because of the story behind it.

  55. I feel like the rock/size obsession is an American thing, anyway. I do not like the ownership/dowry/down payment connotations engagement rings have (why else would only the woman get one?) so I wouldn’t be caught dead in one. Either both get one or get none at all. Added bonus: puts an immediate end to the pissing contest re: stone size.
    Otherwise I have to agree with the answer in the article: you can hardly chastise people for engaging in a different kind of admiration than you had hoped for. The engagement ring ritual/travesty is mostly a financial arrangement, and the curiosity as to how much was invested kinda goes with that territory.

  56. I got a ring and he got a fancy gaming PC…..true love people, true love.

    I think the ring issue is hilarious. It doesn’t matter who I encounter, everyone has a long story and everyone wants to show it off. But I really do love the dick=diamond analogy!

  57. I, too, decided against a traditional diamond ring mostly because it didn’t suit my personality. I love my birthstone (amethyst) and wanted something simple that I would feel comfortable wearing every day. Like the previous poster, many people don’t think it’s an engagement ring, or when they hear I’m engaged, they glance at it and then don’t say anything. But it’s very special to me and that’s what’s most important. A diamond is just a very expensive rock, and if it means something to some people, then that’s what they should have. Without the meaning behind it, no ring has any value.

    I have decided not to ask brides-to-be to see their rings anymore because I don’t want others to think that I believe that’s what I think is important about their engagement. I would rather talk about how exciting their engagement is and how the wedding plans are coming. If they show me their ring and expect a response, I will always say it is beautiful and that’s it. It’s beautiful to them, so my opinion doesn’t really matter.

  58. I love my ring and it’s totally sentimental. The span of time between when we decided to get married and were actually leaving the courthouse legally wed was three weeks. We were both supposed to get cheapy plastic rings from the State Fair to wear until we could afford something else, but my husband insisted I get a “real ring” instead. So I picked out a sapphire solitaire (my birthstone) in a simple white gold setting, and he gave it to me for my birthday. (I don’t have a separate wedding ring, since I wasn’t technically engaged for a significant amount of time.) He was supposed to upgrade it at some point, but I’m so totally attached to it now that I wear the three-stone sapphire ring he gave me for our fourth anniversary on my right hand.

    Anyway, the combination of looking 10 years younger than I am and the simple sapphire solitaire ring, I’m guessing strangers assume I’m wearing a promise ring from my high school boyfriend. They probably don’t jump to the conclusion that I’ve been married almost eight years and have started to check the “30-34” age box. Oh, well.

  59. I really appreciate this post, and I’ve read it several times. My engagement ring is a small amethyst and I remember the excitement and then subsequent loud disappointment my family expressed when they saw it and its size. I love my ring not because of the size of the gem or the kind of gem, but because of its meaning and the story behind it(I’m very critical of the industry so a huge rock was not what I had in mind anyway). But talk about a way to make you feel self-conscious and critical of something you love so much, because of what it means to you. And I know it has made my fiance feel very guilty when people comment on my ring (in a very dick-size way). Thank you for this post, as a continuous reminder to those of us made to second guess our symbols of commitment.

  60. In three pages of comments, in all this talk of conflict-free and Canadian and eco-friendly diamonds, not one commenter has pointed out that the MOST eco-friendly gemstone is a lab-created one. If you just looooove diamonds and won’t settle for anything other than a real one, you don’t have to give your money to environment-destroying or African-child-murdering companies: you can contribute to SCIENCE and get a 100% REAL diamond that in many cases is even MORE perfect than natural ones. Synthetic gems are often larger, clearer, AND cheaper than naturally-mined ones, and they’re completely identical in chemical structure so nobody can try to tell you your stone is “fake”.

    Go the REAL eco-friendly route, and buy synthetic!

      • I know it is, I just think it’s a great alternative for those of us seeking to stand by what we believe is right, and it gets ignored by so many people that I just had to say something!

  61. There will always be people who ask nosy, intrusive, or rude questions. “How big is it?” and “How much was it?” are two of those questions. I find the best answer to give that suits my personality is to do an impression of Dr. Evil “One milllllllllyun dollars[carats]!”.

    My bridal set, and my husband’s wedding ring, are an heirloom set from my stepfather’s family, and we love them. Small, delicate, simple. In contrast, my friend C’s E-ring has a wide, thick gold band with a large square-cut diamond. 1) She’s delighted with the artistry of the ring, and 2) it looks fabulous on her. What the hell else would I need to know about it?

  62. Yup, e-rings were a form of collateral. If he didn’t follow through, she had something of value. Also it was believed a man wouldn’t buy something expensive if he wasn’t truly serious.

  63. I get that all the time. I dobt understand why the size of the diamonds matter. I have a sparkly diamond engagement ring which i love so much (because i like sparkly things) but i actually dont know what carat the diamonds are. I just liked the way it sparkled 🙂 but having said that, i would wear a cheezel as long as it came from my man

  64. I avoided that game altogether by getting a big shiny amethyst. Sits atop a antique-inspired band design by kay jewelers. I wanted to use my own amethyst but we couldn’t find any jeweler that did personal cuttings.
    I hate when I talk to people and they I have actually had people tell me its not a REAL wedding ring because its not a diamond. Of course I had to say in kindest way possible to go F*&^K themselves. And I guess you think its plastic? Grrrrr

    Anyway…I have had more positives from it than anything else. I’ve learned that even some of my closest friends were almost “afraid” to go against the grain and get a stone in a different color they liked because getting a diamond was “traditional” in their family’s eyes. I feel like for one, it doesn’t have to be an arms race to have the bigger and better…the thought and love behind it counts more than anything. And for second, I think it puts completely unrealistic pressure on guys to pony up tons of money so their women can win in size against everyone, even if the whole thing ends in divorce over it. I was just happy getting something purple, he wanted to go above and beyond and got me the band for it. I was just happy he spent the time and bonding with me to get it. That he truly wanted me to be happy with whatever I chose.

    Even though still, I wanted to have tattoo rings. =) lol

  65. Hahaha! Yes! Personally I don’t really want a big ring, I wouldn’t care if it was a bit shitty by the norm standards, it’s more about the gesture I think. However all my friends have big rocks and their boyfriends had to play oneupmanship with siblings/get Tiffanys/research cuts etc. I can see the look on their faces now trying to fake excitement when I turn up with something mega modest lol!

  66. I have a solitare emerald cut ruby in white gold, with a white gold band. Rarely does anyone ask or look at it, accept me, and it clearly doesn’t send enough of the wedding ring vibe. Been thinking about white topaz instead…

  67. My hubs worked with some girls at a previous office (big cell phone company) and they did have a stone size thing going that was just nuts — note that this was before the financial crash. It took a LOT of convincing for him to really believe that I didn’t want a diamond or a large stone at all! For the girls that want them, great, just not me. Anything that can snag is sooo not practical for the outdoorsy klutz!

    I actually get more compliments on my set than anything else, a sapphire in a wheat leaf setting. Its just a little bit different with the engraving that reflects the light, instead of small stones. Its also just plain practical for our active lifestyle (his ring is the same pattern on a larger band).

  68. …Am I the only one who legitimately doesn’t know what size the diamond is? I mean, my husband got me the ring with the style and look I wanted, I could care less what size the diamond is and what grade it is. My friends and family who looked at the ring would drool over the artistry and details I pointed out, and maybe because I don’t know many shallow people, the only person who asked the size of the diamond was my overly competitive and materialistic sister. And I said “It’s this size silly” and help up my hand. It’s big enough that I can still gaze at my pretty ring while missing my husband, but small enough that I don’t have to take it off to function. People need to grow up and just appreciate what they have and stop comparing it to everyone else.

  69. Mine is a 1.5 carat white sapphire! I just wanted something sparkly to look at without sacrificing the overall quality. The stone was like $100 lol a diamond would have been I don’t even know- too expensive!

  70. Is it weird that really only lieke 2 people ever have asked actual size of my rock? (1.5 karats) they just exclaim how beautiful it is.

    Side note: while alot of people are eco friendly crazy I honestly don’t care how eco friendly a ring is, if u started explaining ur ring like that to me i would probably have deflected by asking the size of the diamond too. Just sayin…

  71. We got tattoos a few weeks after getting married, it’s permanent as we feel our marriage is. He has a silver claddagh he wears when off work and I wear an Art Deco era ring and I love it (it looks like a delicate snowflake with hearts). We have a custom design for rings we want made eventually that are non traditional as well. His with my name in my ancient heritage script and an Irish phrase, mine with his birthstone set into a Maltese cross and a celtic knot band. Do what makes you happy and don’t apologize. If you want a huge diamond, that’s awesome- it makes you happy. If you don’t, that’s awesome- it makes you happy. If you want a simple band, that’s awesome- it makes you happy. If you want a tattoo, that’s awesome- it makes you happy. No ring at all? Awesome if you’re happy.

  72. I have this friend who said her ring can buy a house.I asked her how big it was and she said it’s half a carat.I have waaaay bigger than that (tcw 6 and way beter in other aspects too) and I have another in a half a carat that’s for daily wear and I never bragged to her about it but since she asked, I indulged her.She was quiet after that.Point is,don’t brag about it in wrong ways (like she did).It’s not the size of the rock-actually the bigger they are the more uncomfortable they are to wear.I’m planning to have that big hunk of rock split into 2 and made into rings for each of my daughters irregardless if they choose to get married in the future or not.I’m not into oneupsmanshipping but she totally asked for it!

  73. I think everyone’s ring has it’s own story, and the most important thing is the man(or woman) who gave it to you. I have actually never had anyone ask the size of my ring- I didn’t know until I had it appraised to get it insured- and I have since forgotten. It’s pretty, I love it, and every time I look at it(or twirl it around when I’m in bed) it takes me right back to my fiancé down on one knee asking me to marry him. Thats what it’s all about.

  74. Lol oh no I am the worst. 1st engagement ring. Yes first. Was opal and amethyst, mine and fiances birthstones. A funky pattern. 2nd one was circles… Still opal and amethyst. 3rd was opal and diamond. 4th just straight diamond. Because me and soft minerals… Don’t agree

  75. As someone who has a very small (0.10ct) heirloom stone, I still get comments about its size. Things like “He obviously doesn’t love you enough cause the stone is too small” and “That’s way too small to be an engagement ring! Make him buy you something bigger!” and the hilarious “I would have said no to that tiny thing.” But you know what? I love my rings. The stone was his grandmother’s (she passed away before he and I met), and I followed tradition- his mother has an heirloom, my mother has an heirloom, and now I do.

    People will make comments, no matter what the size. Just move onto a new subject. It’s not worth the frustration and cattiness from other people.

  76. It’s funny. My fiance got me this beautiful ring with tiny diamonds that are in a center square. It’s perfect for me, but regularly I get the comment, “Let me see—oh, it’s so delicate and different.” Like somehow my diamonds aren’t good enough because they don’t meet a specific size.

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