All Articles Tagged "marriage"

Kay Jewelers Is Allegedly Repairing Diamond Rings With Fake Stones And Brides Are Not Happy About It

May 27th, 2016 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
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There is no such thing as too much #bling! #Accessorize #Diamonds #EngagementSeason

A photo posted by Kay Jewelers (@kayjewelers) on

Every kiss is said to begin with Kay Jewelers.

Or so we thought… The classic slogan we grow up hearing from the famous American retailer may have to change due to Buzzfeed News’ latest investigative report.

Brides told Buzzfeed, they took their rings to be cleaned or repaired by the brand, but when their rings were returned, they had the wrong stones. The women claimed their “diamonds” didn’t shine as brightly and were even bigger than their original stones.

Hannah LaFlam of Vermont told Buzzfeed, she sent her ring to Kay Jewelers twice, to change the sizing of the band during and after her pregnancy. Once her Leo diamond ring was returned she noticed it didn’t look right. When she told a Kay Jeweler’s sales associate about her observations, the sales associate dismissed her concerns and told her “It’s just because you haven’t seen it for a while.”

LaFlam left Kay’s still feeling discouraged and placed her ring in the sunlight. She immediately realized her diamond stone had been changed. The newer diamond appeared larger and the brilliance of the ring had a dull reflection. She called Kay’s headquarters and asked for her diamond’s certification. Afterward, LaFlam took the ring to another jeweler to see if they could match the certification number to the diamond that was in her ring. Unfortunately, her stone didn’t match.

LaFlam later returned to Kay’s and told the sales associates her alleged diamond was not the same stone and the associate found her original ring in New Hampshire. It was later returned and LaFlam was given a gift certificate from Kay’s but the damage was done. Buzzfeed reports, “LaFlam said she is happy to have her diamond back, but she doesn’t think she will ever use her warranty at Kay again — even though it is already paid for.”

It turns out LaFlam’s debacle wasn’t an isolated incident (at least seven other women were identified on Facebook who had similar experiences) but Kay Jewelers claims to be dumbfounded as to how these incidents have occurred. Despite this being the second bulk of complaints sent to Buzzfeed about the jeweler, staff members of Kay’s say there is strict policy that keeps diamonds from being swapped out and that their staff is trained to detect if the rings don’t have the right stone in them. According to Richard Cavello, the general manager of the Kay location in Midtown Manhattan, “Our store personnel are trained to detect that, and if it was not the diamond that was received, they would know that.” He went on to say if someone claims they received the wrong diamond, it’s possible “they weren’t provided enough info when they drop the ring off.”

Kay’s parent company, Signet, was equally ambivalent to the issue at hand, telling Buzzfeed the complaints featured in their article is “minimal” in comparison to the many other satisfied Kay customers.

Mmmhmmm.

Is Traveling A Great Way To Find A Man?

May 25th, 2016 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
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Would you search for a travel partner on a dating site? It turns out plenty of women are.

Take Jenna for example, a woman who decided to join eHarmony to find a traveling partner to join her on a variety of trips. When she signed up for the acclaimed dating site, Jenna decided to reset her location settings to find a person who had the same values and a traveling spirit. Luckily, she was matched with her now-husband Ben. When they met virtually, Ben and Jenna were 7,500 miles apart and eventually coordinated their travels to meet in person. Since then, the two have gotten married and traveled the world together.

Although Jenna’s method to find love is extremely unconventional, other women have claimed to use similar methods and risks to connect with men abroad. In a compilation of love stories for Vagabound3.com, female travel bloggers shared how they met their significant others in places that were unfamiliar to them.

Edna, who runs the site ExpatEdna.com, revealed how she and her fiancé fell in love in Singapore after she became his roommate. “There were already two guys in the flat, they were looking for a third roommate. One was British and had just moved to Singapore a week earlier, so I immediately started inviting him to hang out as I remembered how hard it could be to find a group of friends after moving to a new city. After a couple weeks we knew we liked each other; once we moved into the flat we hung out even more and after a month started dating. We took our first trip together after only six weeks, to the romantic island of Bali,” she shared.

Amanda, the founder of MacroMama, shared how her husband proposed to her a few months after they met on a crowded street in Marrakesh, Morocco. “We did keep in touch and in a few months, I had booked a ticket for a short visit and found myself again in Morocco. He asked me to marry him on this trip and as fast and crazy as it seemed – I knew it was right. After seven years, an immigration headache and two kids, we’re as in love as we were at that first glance.”

Do you think travel is the perfect segue to romance?

Travel Trials: My Husband Would Rather Travel To Europe

May 18th, 2016 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
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(As Told To Lauren R.D. Fox)

My husband doesn’t like to travel with me to the places I want to go. It’s either his location of interest or we stay at home.

Every time I suggest we take a trip, he vetoes the suggestions for locales that I suggest. For example, over the past five months I’ve suggested we plan an end-of-the-year trip to a country in Africa, with Egypt or Kenya being my most recent pitches.

But, as expected, my husband crinkled his nose and told me that he doesn’t feel comfortable traveling to places that have consistent travel advisory warnings. Don’t they all?

“You can look it up and see for yourself, they’re not really safe.”

We both know violence can happen anywhere. So something tells me that my husband just isn’t interested in traveling to the Motherland. I get this idea based on the fact that he always likes to suggest that we travel to European countries instead.

Personally, I am not interested in traveling to Europe again. During my early twenties, I backpacked through a few countries with my friends after college. I checked out all the sights I needed to see and know where the frou-frou bars and lounges are located. I enjoyed my time in places like Italy and France, but I desire to travel elsewhere–specifically to places and spaces in Africa. I just want to see what is out there and be around people who look like me. Learn the culture, embrace it, and experience countries like Kenya or Egypt, South Africa or Ghana, with an open mind.

When I talk to my husband about his consistent disapproval, he accuses me of assuming that he isn’t “in touch” with his Blackness and says that we don’t have to travel there to feel that we are. That assumption isn’t far from the truth. My husband actually studied abroad in London during college and traveled to other European countries during that time, so I don’t understand his hesitancy to branch out. He’s never been to Africa and yet, he perceives the continent through the lenses of a late-night “30 cents a day” infomercial. I’m over the headstrong stance, but if I travel by myself, I know he will have a fit.

Should I give in and travel to Europe for the millionth time or try and go it alone to these countries I really want to see?

When Your Husband Won’t Wear His Wedding Ring

May 17th, 2016 - By Allyson Leak
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What would you do if you surprised your husband at work one day only to discover he wasn’t wearing his wedding ring?

Would you freak out or be understanding?

In 1952 if a man was seen not wearing his ring he would get many awkward looks and possibly be ostracized by his community. Nowadays many of the “rules” have changed. Women are proposing more and some couples are opting for non traditional ceremonies. But how far should modern couples go when it comes to setting new marriage standards?

Donald Trump, Prince William, and Will Smith represent a few celebrity hubby’s that are seen occasionally not sporting their wedding rings.  And although Jay Z is another one to add to that “off and on” list, he actually has been spotted recently in a photo with his wedding ring back on possibly to silence the speculation surrounding his marriage after his wife Beyonce released her album Lemonade which made references to his alleged affairs.

But these men represent a growing population of couples setting their own rules regardless of the status quo. Some experts think it’s a recipe for disaster. “I think they’re making a statement by not wearing one,” said Jeanne Safer, a psychotherapist in New York. “It may unconsciously signal availability for adultery, either actually or in fantasy.

However, not every ringless married man on the planet is going to cheat. Some men like KY Henderson from Modernman.com says  it’s more annoying than anything else. “For a lot of guys, it’s a nuisance. To them, it gets in the way of typing, or holding a golf club, or wielding a remote.”

And some men simply don’t love the fact that the diamond industry has used their clever marketing to make people think that rings and love have to go hand in hand.

Jason Feifer, who is married and a writer for New York Weddings, says, “I don’t like knowing that I’m wearing a ring not because of love, but because of a marketing campaign by the jewelry industry that set cultural norms that I’m now stuck with. When I think about that, it makes me angry: De Beers cooked up [the engagement ring] as a way to counter diminishing diamond sales in the 1930s. We shouldn’t be basing our symbols of love on someone’s profit motive.”

The history of the wedding ring dates back a long time. In Ancient Egypt the circle was used as a symbol of eternity because it never ended.  The Egyptians also believed in wearing the ring on the fourth finger of the left hand because the vena amoris (vein of love) ran directly from the heart to the top of this finger. And it wasn’t until Roman times that wearing the ring as a public display became popular.

How Choosing The Right Spouse Helps Your Career

May 13th, 2016 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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How Choosing The Right Spouse Helps Your Career

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Selecting the right life partner is not only crucial to your overall well-being but also, your career, a new study suggests.

According to Inc, the study led by researchers from Washington University in St. Louis found that those with sensible and reliable partners are more likely to receive better performance reports in the workplace, earn more money and score more promotions.

What’s even better is that researchers say that having a partner with these traits helped both men and women. Apparently, it all comes down to having a conscientious partner who demonstrates model behavior such as performing more household tasks and proving their reliability in other ways. Conscientious partners not only promote a better home life, which allows their spouses to focus more on work, but it is also likely their husbands or wives will begin to emulate their behavior.

“These results demonstrate that the dispositional characteristics of the person one marries influence important aspects of one’s professional life.”

Years ago, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg told a room full of professionals that the person you choose to marry is the most important decision any woman will make concerning her career.

“The most important career choice you’ll make is who you marry. I have an awesome husband, and we’re 50/50,” Sandberg said at the 2011 IGNITION Conference in New York before going on to share just how crucial it is to have a supportive partner. Of course, you don’t need a partner to be successful, but if you’re going to have one, it will behoove you to pick someone who is supportive and according to this new study, conscientious.

Research Suggests Marriage Is Bad For Your Waistline

May 12th, 2016 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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Marriage comes with many perks, but apparently, helping you to stay in shape is not one of them. A recent study, which was published in the Journal of Family, found that singles do a much better job of keeping off the pounds than married folk and those with live-in partners.

Sociologist Joe Teachman of Western Washington University examined data collected in 1979 for the National Longitudinal Study of Youth. Some of the data collected included the body mass index or BMI of 3,000 African-Americans over the course of a 20-year period.

Of course, Teachman found that those who were married or living with a partner had higher BMIs than those who were single, divorced, or widowed. And unfortunately, women were found to gain more weight than men. Researchers believe that a possible explanation for this excess weight gain in relationships may be that “men and women with mates may be less concerned about their weight as they are not actively seeking a mate.”

The fat and happy theory as it relates to relationships has always been very real to me because my parents experienced it firsthand. For years, their wedding photo sat on the mantle of our home next to a photo snapped only 2.5 years later. In the wedding photo, both my mom and dad appear quite slim. In the other photo, not so much.

“We got happy, and we got fat,” my mother will always joke. “Learn from our mistakes. Embrace the happy, avoid the weight.”

It is especially funny because my mother always tells the story of how my dad would hop around the house saying, “I could never be fat, I’m too active.” And then, marriage happened. Luckily for them, my parents were able to shed their “happy” weight.

Have you ever experienced weight gain after settling into a new marriage or relationship?

H/t Essence

Gabrielle Union: We Wanted To Get Married For The Kids

May 2nd, 2016 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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Splash News

Gabrielle Union and Dwyane Wade are approaching their second wedding anniversary, but if you ask the “Being Mary Jane” actress, she may tell you that if it weren’t for their sons, they might still be boyfriend and girlfriend today. In an interview with Ocean Drive, the 43-year-old confessed that the kids were the “driving force” in their decision to marry.

“D and I could have gone on for a long time as boyfriend and girlfriend,” she said, “but the kids were the driving force in wanting us to be a legitimate, like, real—and I’m using my finger quotes—family in their eyes.”

Not to be confused, though. The two were, and still are, very much in love and they appear to be thoroughly enjoying married life.

“If you have good, effective, honest communication, you can handle any issue or problem in a relationship. D is literally my best friend. We really, really enjoy spending time with each other more than anybody else. Well, with D, maybe I’m tied with LeBron! But I’m definitely his favorite female! If you have the chance to marry your best friend, I would highly recommend it.”

When your husband becomes your built-in bestie, it sometimes becomes quite easy to lose sight of your interests and goals; however, Union is pretty hellbent on maintaining her independence—personally and financially.

“He appreciates my independence, and my high credit score, and the fact that if I want a Chanel bag, I’m not asking for his Amex; I’ve got my own,” she quipped.

Union also addressed both her and Wade’s parenting styles. Apparently, they take turns being disciplinarians.

“We literally keep track,” she said. “There’s basically an imaginary chart: ‘I was bad cop last time; now it’s your turn. You have to be the jerk who doles out punishment for missed homework assignments or talking on the phone after curfew.’ With the older boys, they come to me with girl stuff, homework. Or if they’re trying to butter up dad, they definitely come to me to soften me up first. I’m the line of defense, I guess, before dad.”

Check out more from Gabby’s interview here.

If You Have These Personality Traits, You May Be Happier In Your Marriage Than Others

April 29th, 2016 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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Corbis Images

There are many factors that explain why some are happily married while others aren’t. And now, science suggests that possession of certain personality traits may play a significant role in marital satisfaction.

According to Fusion, a recent study, which was published in the journal Personality and Individual Differences, examined the correlation between personality traits and happiness levels before and after marriage. Researchers differentiated between personalities by using the Big Five scale, which identifies people’s personalities by “agreeableness, extraversion, conscientiousness, neuroticism, and openness.”

Initially, researchers found that women who married during the study started out happier than those who never married, which supports previous research that suggests happier people are generally more likely to marry. The year leading up to the marriage, the life satisfaction of these women increased; however, their life satisfaction tended to decline gradually once they were actually married. Men also experienced a decline in satisfaction after saying “I do,” but they experienced this decline a lot sooner than women did.

The good news is that not everyone experienced a similar rate of decline, and apparently, this is where the personality traits come in. Women who scored highly conscientiousness scale—in other words, they think of themselves as “more thorough, careful, and vigilant in life” and women who scored low on the extraversion scale—”meaning: they consider themselves introverted”—were more likely to “sustain” the life satisfaction levels they had prior to getting married.

Interestingly, researchers wrote that “women who scored themselves as moderately low on conscientiousness quickly experienced falls in life satisfaction,” adding: “After some years, the life satisfaction levels of those moderately low in conscientious are similar to those that remained single throughout the study.”

As for the guys, researchers saw that guys who rate highly on the extraversion scale were more likely to maintain happiness levels for longer periods of time.

“Whilst all men experience a pre-marital increase in their life satisfaction, men that are extraverted seem to experience longer-term benefits to their life satisfaction during marriage. Introverted men, however, experience significant drops in their life satisfaction that result in them being approximately 0.20 SD lower in life satisfaction than those who never marry,” the authors wrote.

When attempting to explain these correlations, researchers reason that conscientious women likely “prioritize the success of their relationships” and in turn, enjoy their marriages more.

“Such a result might be explained by the tendency for conscientious individuals to place more value on relationship goals and therefore, conscientious individuals may strive harder to ensure success,” the wrote.

Researchers arrived at their results after pouring over data collected from 2,015 individuals before and after tying the knot as a part of the German Socio-Economic Panel study. Participants were surveyed each year from 2005 to 2012. 468 participants married for the first time and remained married during those eight years. They were the focus of the study.

Is It Appropriate To Dance With Someone Else When Your Spouse Is Not Around?

April 25th, 2016 - By Veronica Wells
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Is It Appropriate To Dance With Someone Else When Your Spouse Is Not Around?

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I mentioned last week that my father is a huge Prince fan and the one who introduced my mother, sister and I to his genius.

So, needless to say, he was deeply affected by his death last week. In my hometown of Indianapolis, Indiana, DJs announced that there would be a celebration of the late artist, downtown, starting at five o’clock. My father starts work at an ungodly hour and was already off by 4 p.m… My mother, on the other hand,  owns and operates a daycare and was still at work, waiting for parents to pick up their children. So, while my father called her and told of his plans to attend the celebration, she couldn’t make it. But knowing how much Prince means to my father, she encouraged him to go and have fun.

Sadly, that’s not what happened.

The party, which was supposed to be held at a bar, was actually housed in a tent outside of the venue. This might not have been too terrible if the weather were accommodating. Instead, it was raining…hard. There was no dance floor, the tent was erected over concrete and it too was darkened by the rain.

Needless to say, it was wack and my father was there for only a few minutes before he peeped game and went home.

Later that evening, as he was telling my mother about the epic failure that was the Prince celebration he said, “You know I just wanted to sit and listen to his music, maybe dance a bit.”

My mother’s ears perked up at that last part. Now, I wasn’t in the room, but I imagine the discussion went something like this:

“Dance?…Dance with who?”

“You know, I would ask a woman to dance.”

“You don’t think that’s inappropriate?”

“No, I was there celebrating the work of this artist. It’s almost like a homegoing celebration. It’s ok to dance. A woman would see my wedding ring.”

“A wedding ring doesn’t mean a thing to some people.”

“We would just dance and then say goodbye to one another. “

“I think it’s inappropriate. You never know what someone else’s intentions are.”

A few days later, my parents called my sister and I and ran this scenario past us. Even though my father was the one who presented the story, as my mother said nothing, we agreed with her. Initially, when my dad said dance, I thought he meant by himself. But then the thought of him asking another woman to do so gave me pause.

Partially because what my mother said about not knowing another person’s intentions. But also because in so many situations asking someone to dance is a precursor to other things. And rather than having to shut another woman down, I think it’s best to play it low key, keeping it unmistakably platonic and cordial, when you find yourself out in a social setting without your spouse.

Still, I’m not married and I’m not sure if this is a hard fast rule.

When I told my coworkers this story, one of them mentioned something about a male relative who had taken up salsa dancing. He was attending classes, trying to learn the technique. Naturally, he was dancing, and very closely I might add, with other women. He found he really enjoyed it and invited his wife to take some of them with him. But each time he invited her, she refused, claiming it wasn’t her thing.

That is a bit different. One, he’s in a classroom setting and two, he keeps extending an invitation to his wife and she keeps refusing, when she knows that not only will he be dancing with other women, it’s also something he enjoys doing and she’s choosing not to be a part of it.

Shouldn’t he be well within his rights to enjoy this activity?

To me, it’s a slippery slope.

What do you think, is it inappropriate for married couples to dance with someone who isn’t there spouse, particularly when their partner is not at the same venue.

Trying To Decide If You Should Stay Or Leave? Watch This Brief Video

April 21st, 2016 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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Trying To Decide If You Should Stay Or Leave? Watch This Brief Video

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Should I stay or leave?

This is a question that crosses the minds of people in long-term relationships more often than they probably care to admit. Sometimes, these concerns are fleeting. They are often the result of temporary frustrations or other random feelings that missing out. Other times, it’s something deeper.

“The only thing determining whether to stay or leave is how we feel, which can be a pretty hard matter to work out for ourselves,” says philosopher Alain de Botton in a video from The School of Life. “Our feelings have a dispiriting habit of shifting and evading any efforts at rational clarification.”

For those who have seriously found themselves at a crossroad, and are wondering whether or not it’s really time to peace out, the Architecture of Happiness author recommends doing a self-check by asking yourself the following questions presented in the video below.

H/t Huffington Post Divorce