Ways To Show Commitment Without A Diamond Ring
Did you know that Americans spend on average $5,000 on an engagement ring? For some individuals, that’s nearly two months of living expenses. Of course, that’s just the average amount spent. Some individuals spend as much as $20,000 or $30,000 on rings—which represents a full year’s salary for many people across the country. But should we just accept that this enormous expense is part of the deal if we want to become engaged, and make a commitment to somebody? That seems a bit exclusive, as if showing one’s love is only available to the wealthy (or at least those with significant disposable income). And what about people who just don’t like to wear jewelry? Or, who have plenty of money, and prefer not to filter it into something they wear on their hand all day, every day, to places it could easily get stolen? Here are ways to show commitment without a diamond ring.
So here’s a secret: most people walking around don’t know the difference between a real and fake diamond. Also, if they do, who cares? If the purpose is to show that you’re taken, costume jewelry on that wedding finger will do just fine.
It’s easy to slap a ring on and tell yourself its magical powers will keep you committed. What’s not so easy is coming up with monthly vows to make formally to one another. You can adjust them based on needs that come up each month. Setting aside that night, every month, to make those vows again is a big commitment.
You can take a ring off but you can’t take a tattoo off…at least, not without a lot of uncomfortable laser procedures. Get a tattoo of rings on your wedding fingers, or even ones that say “Mr” and “Mrs” somewhere on your bodies.
Buy neighboring tombstones
Here is an idea for those with a darker sensibility; if you want to show your loved one you really plan to spend eternity together, just show him or her the neighboring tombstones you’ve bought for the two of you.
It’s much tougher for a necklace to accidentally fall off than it is for a ring to. A small necklace donning a mini ring, or even a word like “Forever” or “Mrs” will tell the world you’re taken.
An engagement portrait
A life-size portrait of your partner on one knee, popping the question, hanging in your foyer will certainly send the message that you two take this whole union thing seriously. And it will remind you to stop and think before picking fights—your portrait selves are watching you.
Whether it’s a vacation home, an apartment you rent out for extra money, or a small commercial space you purchase to lease to businesses, nothing says commitment like owning property together. That arrangement is harder to get out of than a marriage.
Rather than buy a new ring, you can pass down a family ring. That way, you get to carry on a tradition, honor your loved ones, and save some money. It’s also a nice way to welcome your betrothed to the family.
Make your partner a beneficiary
Nobody will question your commitment to one another if you make each other beneficiaries in your will or of your life insurance plans.
It could be a little diamond earring for him and a belly button one for you, or matching cartilage piercings.
Key and locket jewelry
You could wear a necklace with a small locket on it, and your partner could wear a (tasteful, masculine) necklace that holds the key to that locket. A little “I said yes” on yours and “She said yes” on his would be darling.
A commemorative bottle of wine
You can create and design your own commemorative bottle of wine, to be stored on a display shelf and opened for a special anniversary.
Donate the money to a child in need
You can donate the money you would have spent on a ring to a child in need, doing a sort of surrogate adoption. There are plenty of organizations that will let you do this, sending you updates on the child’s life for decades.
An engagement piano
A piano, a guitar, or whatever instrument you two would like to learn together. You can have your initials or a romantic phrase engraved into it.
Get a car together
Want to put your commitment to the test? Share a car. It’s the next best thing to a child for testing your ability to communicate, compromise, and be generous.