On any given week, there is Big Talk in the wedding world about something, and this week, we’ve got a particularly interesting little topic flying around: In these modern times, is splitting the cost of the engagement ring becoming a thing? Would you—did you—go Dutch on your engagement ring? Is this something that’s going to be the norm by the time our kids are getting hitched?
It's a topic that people have a lot of strong opinions about, as you can imagine—on both sides, in favor and against. Here are just a few that The Knot received after posing the question on Twitter—and here is a segment that aired on Today, which gives you a little more background and context on this whole thing:
For me, I get that in this day and age, many couples live together before they get married, and that because of that, they have joint accounts and merged finances and have already built a life in which they are splitting the cost of that life. So I do see the argument of the people who say that engagement and marriage is a team continuation of that life, and so it makes sense to them to split the cost of an expensive piece of jewelry that signifies that they will, together, be taking that next step. I totally get it. But I don't like it.
I'm just a traditional girl when it comes to certain wedding things. I like for the guy to talk to the girl's father or parents first. I like when the ring (and the proposal!) is a total surprise to the girl, as opposed to her picking it out. Heck, as I've said before, I don't even like the first look—I love when the first time the groom sees the bride on the wedding day is when she appears at the top of the aisle, veil on, arm linked with her father's.
When I mentioned this topic at a meeting among Philly mag's web editors, the ears and eyebrows of several male colleagues perked up—but Be Well Philly editor Emily Leaman was with me. "It cheapens the proposal—both literally and figuratively," she said, pointing out that part of the reason why it's so touching when a guy gets a girl a ring is because of the sacrifice behind it—which is partly what marriage is about. And I have to agree—if you are on board with the traditional idea of the guy asking the girl to marry him, isn't it wonderful to imagine the man who will become your husband picking out or designing and saving for the ring? That there will be so much of him in there? Because who cares how big it is or what it cost or anything like that—it's what it symbolizes that is so lovely.
Every couple should do exactly what works for them, for their partnership, of course. But with the bajillions of different variables when it comes to proposals these days (Should he ask your dad for permission? Do you want any say in the ring? You cool with it being in public? Do you want to be completely surprised? Etc., etc., etc.!), maybe just be sure to have a chat or two about how you both expect this to go down. You don't want to be surprised one day if he lets you know what your half of the rent, cable, water, and ring are that month.
What do you think about this? Are you into it? Did you do it? Would you do it? What are your reasons for or against? Share in the comments!