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If your partner proposed to you right now, would you say yes?

Okay, now, what if he proposed to you right now, and he did so without a ring? Same answer?

For one reader, we’ll call her Joy, she was initially okay with the fact that her man didn’t have some gargantuan rock (or even a tiny Cracker Jack box band) to place on her hand when he popped the question. After almost three years together, she was just happy that he wanted to take such a big step with her. However, her family wasn’t as happy about the proposal.

“My family feels like, if he couldn’t afford to get me a ring and offer a ‘proper proposal,’ then we probably don’t need to take that step.”

And in most cases, I think we would all agree that said kin is overreacting. But at the same token, it’s been about four months since the proposal and Joy still hasn’t seen an engagement ring. When Joy recently asked her partner when he thinks one will be on her hand, he replied with “I’m working on it.” He’s not necessarily in the best place financially as a grad student (he went back to school), so Joy even offered to help him out and put some money together with him to buy a ring. He wasn’t having it.

“He doesn’t think it’s right for a woman to help pay for her ring. He just keeps telling me that he’s working on it, and it will come soon enough.”

Joy admits that the rumblings of her family have gotten to her, and she’s starting to wonder if maybe the lack of a ring is a sign that maybe they’re moving too fast. If he can’t financially afford to make it happen right now, what other issues could they end up having that have to do with money as a married couple? Maybe he’s not as ready as he thinks. And she admits that the proposal wasn’t necessarily a planned one. While having a romantic moment on the Promenade in Brooklyn Heights (that’s New York City of course), the two talked about how far they had come together and where they were going. During a particularly emotional moment, he said that he was going to marry her, and then got down and asked.

“I was so shocked but very moved by the whole thing; I didn’t even really notice that he didn’t have a ring. It was so unexpected and sweet that I didn’t really care.”

But as the months have passed, and her family’s doubts increase, she is starting to feel some type of way.  Should she?

This is such an interesting situation because I actually have a friend who is seeing a man who does not believe in engagement rings at all. To him, the declaration of love is more important than a ring that can be lost or pawned. According to my friend, this guy believes that “if he gives himself to me and pledges his love, why does ne need to prove that with an engagement ring? He’d rather we spend that money towards building a house and raising a child…or traveling to Bali as he says.” These are all important things (with the exception of Bali), and when folks lay down their explanations like that, it makes you ask yourself, how important is a ring to me?

For me, it’s not anything I would want my partner to go bankrupt over, but it’s something that is important to me. So yes, I think my friend’s new boo is just being cheap.

I plan on being a practical bride. Having a very small ceremony and skipping major debts and purchases to prepare for our first home together instead. As well as a joint car (again, I live in New York…), and if possible, maybe a honeymoon. I would want us to save as much as possible.

Still, I do want a ring.

However, knowing the love that I have for my boyfriend, if he couldn’t give me a ring for some reason (a really good reason), it’s not something I would reject his proposal over or look for a way out about. So if I were Joy, I would recommend to my man that we take things slow when it comes to getting married and planning the wedding. Save up money and get ducks in a row and debts in order as they’re both far away from being financially secure. But it’s clear that Joy’s partner loves her. He wants to be with her, and he wants to put a ring on it. Otherwise, he probably wouldn’t have proposed. That should be reason enough for her to be easy on him, and for her family to back off…

But as always, that’s just my opinion. What say you? Is it petty for Joy to be perturbed about the fact that she hasn’t received an engagement ring? If your man proposed to you without one, would you say “yes”?

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