Is it really about a ring? LONG! & Not sure where to put...

Ok so my 10 year wedding anniversary is coming up and we are about 4 years post diagnosis.  Things are going REALLY well, and this month I didn't even get my "I am doing too much of the heavy lifting at home" overwhelm at PMS time that I commonly do.  It is pretty much our only ADD-fight danger period now, but that is improving partly because I recognize now what is causing it and am making a consistent effort to focus on all the things he DOES WELL (which is a lot) and partly because he is stepping up and helping out where I need him to pretty consistently.  So we are in a good place, and we have an AWESOME trip booked.  Will be 2 weeks involving one of our favorite locations in the US followed by a week in a villa on a Caribbean Island.  I've taken care of all the arrangements, and we got a fabulous deal due to shopping around, internet sales, & family giving awesome gifts.  Very very happy and honestly it would be a sufficient gift, but we are big gift givers & love to celebrate occasions--esp relationship ones (we still celebrate the anniversary of the day we met every year :), so we both want to do more.  We take a trip every year for our anniversary and do gifts too so this isn't unusual, but 10 years is causing us both to want to make it extra special.

So to the ring...(btw, I am probably one of the least materialistic ppl you will ever meet so please understand that going in)  We had exactly one engagement ring convo before he asked me, and I told him QUITE HONESTLY that my biggest concern was for him to buy something he could afford to pay off b4 the wedding.   He picked my engagement ring out entirely on his own & did awesome.  He got me a small (which is good as I am small LOL) platnium ring with a solitare Sapphire (remembering I think diamonds as centerpieces are fairly boring and sapphires are my favorites :D ) and 2 wing diamonds.  I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE my ring and made sure he knew/knows it. 

Then came the wedding ring.....and here the break down occured.  It is very understandable now that we know about the ADD but it was baffling at the time. He was very involved in the wedding planning and helping me decide things, he lived 4 hours away, did most of the travelling to me since the venues and such all had to be vetted here, was the one moving & was squeezing in job interviews during his visits also, we were planning a large wedding & with a sitdown dinner for 300 in only 6 months, and with the anti-debt thing to consider we had a budget to stick to wedding wise, and we agreed all his personal debts (he didn't have many but he is also terrible with money so this was probably hard) had to be paid off before the wedding so we'd be starting with a fresh slate.  He did come with a car payment but that was it.

So when we discussed wedding rings, he was definite on us each picking out our own.  Not sure why he was so firm on this point, but it could have to do with the ring he fell in love with.  It is a very unusual ring and had to be hand made in Germany  It wasn't terribly expensive, but he just loved how different it was, from the process in making it to the final design.  I really, really wanted to get him a titanium ring with sapphires in it or because he isn't big on stones with some sapphire blue enamel in it so it would *go* with my ring, but though I showed him the designs I loved and he was ok with them, he was in love with a different ring, so that is the one I bought him.

Because my engagement ring is non classic with the sapphire centerpiece, we decided to go with a ring guard that would fit together with my ring and also have some diamonds and sapphires in it to make it more formal looking.  It was a really beautiful design, BUT he dropped the ball.  He forgot that he really needed to get a jeweler working on it at least 2 months early, and though he'd talked to some jewelers about options, he ended up just before the wedding scrambling to just get something.  He called me apologetic that the option we'd decided on couldn't happen (the ring guard would have had to be modified to go with my ring and he didn't allow enough time for that) but said he found another option that would be a band with cutouts along the side that would fit with my ring.  I never saw it but he said it would fit together like puzzle pieces and it was a very cool effect.

I said ok......I mean what else could I say and it wasn't a huge deal.  Then he called me just before the wedding apologetic because he hadn't done what needed to be done to get that ring made in time either, but that they were going to be able to do *something*.   He also said the platnium was going to be more expensive than white gold and there was really no difference, did I care which one he bought?  I mean really this is a question only a man would ask right?  But I thought about it and told him that it was important to me that my ring match and that it go together.  If that could be accomplished with white gold and it was cheaper too, I had no problem with it......and I truly didn't except the low priority issue was coming up for me for the first time and I didn't like how it made me feel.  Why were we now out of options because he couldn't finalize our decisions??

The ring kinda looks like it was thrown together at the last moment, which to be sure is what it was :(  They took a ring of white gold in the same thickness as my band and basically put a bend in it so that my engagement ring sorta fits into the bend.  It doesn't fit together at all exactly, but it is fine and I love it as the wedding ring I was given more than I love it for itself.  Mostly I have no issues with it at all, but at certain times it a little bit says low priority without the time to be done correctly.  Also the metals clearly are not the same if you look at it all.  I mean no one could tell on quick glance, but anyone with eyes looking even semi closely can see it doesn't go together. 

He felt bad especially as I bought him exactly what he'd wanted, and after the wedding he immediately offered to get me a new band, but I told him there was no point as a new band would never be the one he gave to me at my wedding, and it would always be special for that reason.

When the ADD behavior was bad and undiagnosed and I was feeling low priority, it did come up that I couldn't believe that with 6 months he couldnt make any effort to make sure the ring I'd be wearing for the rest of my life was ready.  Seriously it was more about priority than anything else.

A couple times a new ring has come up, but every time I've said I love what I have, upgrading the wedding band would be nice, but it would never be my true *wedding ring* so we should let it go.  Obviously it came up as a discussion again with regard to a 10th wedding anniversary gift, and this time I agreed.  I will continue to wear my *real* ring for day to day, but for church and dress up occasions and date night, getting the ring we originally chose would be awesome.  He seemed surprised that I agreed which surprised me because he has been the one mentioning it occasionally all these years....so then I started wondering was it a test?  Was he was only mentioning it to make sure I didn't want a new one or something!??!

I agreed because he had said this would put a period on the last real ADD caused angst.  So though we originally discussed this close to a year ago, when we started discussing trip options and saving for it, come 2 months ago he'd done nothing about it and I got for some reason REALLY REALLY ANGRY.  I yelled at him that this was a stupid exercise and instead of curing the ADD angst it actually was causing it all over again by him having the exact some priority issue.  I was always fine with my ring, he was pressuring me to get a new one, I agree and then he drops the ball AGAIN.  I begged him to just drop the issue forever.

He felt terrible of course :(  and spent the evening looking at options & then went back to doing nothing.  Turns out he was afraid of getting the hard sell from jewelers and wasn't ready to go in person to talk to them, NOT that he told me this of course.  We also have a great friend who used to be a jeweler, but he never even considered talking to him about options  (He has the most frustrating attitude of he has to do everything himself with no help from anyone even when he doesn't know what he is doing).   At the 3 month till anniversary mark (very recently) I just started talking to him about other options for my present (usually we offer little to no imput into eachother's presents so maybe I was being sorta passive aggressive about this).  He said "what about your ring?"  When I asked if he'd done anything whatsoever about looking for a ring, he had to admit that other than emailling one place online 3 times (and getting no response) he hadn't done anything.

I said I want to put a period to the ring forever.  He was upsetting me with it and I needed him to understand why.  We had a long non angry this time convo about feeling like a low priority and making the same mistake over and over, and he asked if I would give him one day (which was today) to take my ring to local jewelers and see what could be done.  I said yes, but no more drama at all about this......I am done and over it and I need it to stop being an issue plus if something nice coudn't be found for what we determined was a reasonable price then it needed to be dropped!

 

He went to about 6 jewelers today!  He called after each fairly excited about some of the options, but the prices were higher than expected. He has to buy a guard, and then they want to send it off with my engagement ring (which I am not comfortable with them shipping my engagement ring off since they could never replace it if it was lost) to be matched, plus insurance, it was going to cost about double what he's saved so far.

The prices really shocked me since originally it was only going to be a few hundred plus insurance probably less than $500 total, but then that was 10 years ago too........we aren't big jewelry buyers obviously but every option was close to double that by the time it was all done.  I told him I thought it was probably too much money, but now he was a man on a mission.

He called me over the moon excited from the last jeweler.  He loved the ppl there.  First thing they did was clean my ring and fix a post that was loosening on one of my diamonds for free, then showed him the options.  They have a designer setting in platnium that is on sale since it was last year's model that he is completely in love with.  Naturally it is more expensive than the white gold options he had already found, he came home with cell phone pictures and I agree it is by far the best and since their insurance policy is different than the others it won't really end up being a lot more money. PLUS their jeweler is on site and my ring doesn't have to be shipped.

Perfect right?  But he doesn't have the money.  He only has 1/2 and he really wants to buy it.  He has been so excited all day with his adventure (which part of what really helped is that everyone was really nice to him and there was no hard sell), and is in love with buying me the ring *I've always wanted*.  Now I do love this ring, but the *always wanted* I honestly think is more about him making up for previous mistakes than me longing for a new ring. I honestly do love mine.  It is not what I picked out and is not what I planned to have, but it is absolutely fine.

 

And after he spent the day looking for a ring for me, and did it in enough time that all 4 of the rings that he found that would work with mine could be modified to fit, I find the period is already on the previous angst for me.  It was really about feeling like a priority and that he could get himself together to do this thing more than it has ever been about getting a new piece of jewelry to me.  His attitude and his priority has been exactly right, and as much as I think a new ring would be an awesome present for my 10th wedding anniversary, I really feel like the issue is over for me.

SOOOO for anyone who has made it this far.......this has clearly not really been entirely about the *ring*  it was about the way he made me feel with his poor planning in a time when I had no idea why he would prioritize getting speciality napkins ordered because we liked them better, but he couldn't seem to find a wedding ring.


Since I feel he has made up for it already, should I still let him buy me a new ring?  It is gorgeous and I love it, but even with the sale he is about 60% short on cash.  He says he knows of extra work he can do to make up the difference and that he wants to, and I get the genuine sense that he feels so accomplished now that he is making up for what to him was a huge screw up (he's even said HOW, when I did so much else for the wedding,  could I ever screw up the wedding ring!?!?).  He loves it ,and he wants me to go look at it, but I feel the way I felt about my engagement ring, buy me what you want and I will love it because it came from you.....I'd rather it be a surprise.  Though I did see his blurry cell phone pic and it was beautiful.

Thoughts?  Concerns?  Everything think I am a materialistic princess?  Thanks for reading and for any feedback!

Ring

I will throw my two cent's worth in here.  My father was best man for my Uncle Chuck when he married my Aunt Alice (my dad's sister).  My dad had to take him to a jeweler the morning of the wedding to get a ring, because he'd never thought of it! So your husband is better than some. I bought my wedding ring (for myself) on eBay (I just happened to see one I loved, and like yours, mine is non-traditional.) So yours is not the worst ADD-wedding ring story I've heard. (I don't know that my Uncle Chuck had ADD, but one of them must have had it because their son does.) As far as I know, they had a long, happy marriage (They are all gone now.)

But I do understand wanting to erase the evidence of being "low priority." (I wish I could do that, but there are so many in my marriage I'd have to erase our whole lives.) I don't think you are being a materialistic princess. And he is hyperfocusing on making this grand gesture for you and trying to make up for a past hurt. But I would let him do it because it will give him a sense of accomplishment. It does sound like he's found a perfect solution. I am sure it's more than you expected because the price of precious metals is at an all-time high. 

Unless he's the kind of guy who will throw stuff back in your face.  When I complained to my husband that we'd spent a whole week helping his mother move, he said "well, I helped your mother too." But that was half a day of unpacking and reassembling bookcases, not 7 full days of work. Some guys would be like "I got you a new platinum wedding ring so you have to let me get this new boat/power tool/guitar/whatever." If your husband is like that (and it doesn't sound from any of your posts like he is), I would say no.

I envy you. You always sound like your husband is on top of his ADD in a way that most of the spouses on here can only dream of.

My best guess is that it is

My best guess is that it is not about a ring, but about sometimes just feeling like for once it would be nice to have something go better than we'd ever imagined it could. Seems he CARED about following through with this 'project' both times, but in the end the ADHD is sometimes more powerful than anything/everything else. Maybe the fear of letting you down/disappointing you was an underlying cause to the procrastination which, in the end, led to him dropping the ball.

In the second go around, it seems he IS pulling through so we can consider this progress, right?

I have moments where I imagine him planning some elaborate date night..or hell, just a simple date night, and surprising me...or I see in movies these wonderfully romantic gestures and the women are completely surprised. I think sometimes, in spite of the fact that I love my husband and don't spend a lot of time 'mourning' these kinds of things, I am only human and I do wish for things like that more often. Maybe you were just experiencing something like that.

Have a wonderful trip..it sounds like pure Heaven!

fear of the 'hard sell'

My husband and I picked our wedding rings at a jeweler's we walked into 2 days before the wedding.  They made them the next day and we picked them up just before they closed.  My wedding ring is rose gold, and doesn't match my engagement ring at all.  No problem!  Then again I am the ADD spouse, and unlike many of my friends, I never had any wedding/engagement ring fantasies.  So, all the stuff about your rings ie; guards, white gold, platinum, etc etc...  I must admit makes no sense to me...

But no... it's not about the ring, but it's also not necessarily JUST ADD/poor planning.  You mentioned your husband was uncomfortable dealing with jewelers giving him the 'hard sell'.  This is a fear many men have... (sorry for generalizing...yes, women do buy engagement rings too, but mostly it's men and jewelers get really pushy when they know a guy is looking for an engagement ring).  Precious metals ARE insanely expensive now, so it's no wonder he'd be a extra gun-shy.

I say if you are financially secure, let him go for it if he can get that 'extra work' to pay it off.  It seems though, since you're talking about sapphires and diamonds and vacations in the first place, that you're doing ok.  So, I say go for it if it makes you both happy!

Thanks for the responses

I think all of you are right about what you are saying, and I think it would be a wonderful end to an issue that has off and on caused some disappointment.  My main concern is that he doesn't have the money saved up.  We do ok and I am VERY careful with money so that we can afford the extras we choose which is generally focusing on travel, but we are self-employed and will be gone 2 weeks Oct/Nov.  In addition, my husband has a 1 week unpaid school to attend in December, so basically our family budget will be less than normal in Oct, Nov, and Dec.  We can live on the less income no problem, but since we need money to spend while we are gone, that is how our extra $ until the trip is allocated, and then for several months there will be far less extra, we don't have hundreds of dollars of family budget to put toward the ring.  Usually we buy presents out of personal/blow money so that it is actually a *present* and not bought with joint funds, but I don't see how he can do it this time.  He just says that he is *working on ideas*

 

I don't even like the idea of the ring costing that much money in the first place and am inclined to just say wait until the prices go back down or until never as far as that goes.  I have never NEEDED a new ring, but I hate to disappoint him now that he has found a *solution* he loves.  I say it isn't really a solution until you know how you are paying for it, but for ppl who live in the NOW that can be a big part of the problem.  He didn't save enough because he didn't price anything until now and because it all seemed so far off, and now is the dilemna.

 

Sueann, I agree with you that there could be a bit of hyperfocus going on, but he would also never ever throw it back in my face that he did this.  He really is a good guy and he does well with having his ADD under control.  I need to comment more on that to him and less on the things that are falling through the cracks.

Sherri, yes I think part of it was an expectation of perfection of how everything was going ...that is what all the planning was for right?  :)  He does it to himself because he pulls off the date nights and the little treats *just cause* that he brings home, so it builds expectation that is hard to keep up all the time.  I need to work hard on not expecting..........i dont' feel like I have high expectations but then when he drops the ball I realize that I'd really expected him to pull it out at the nth hr.........something he is a little too good at generally I guess. 

He brings ADD to the table, but I bring perfectionism, so I know that I am not always a picnic either.  I am learning all the time, especially through reading what so many others deal with on both sides of the ADD aisle, that sometimes what I need to do most is be verbally grateful for what I have.  I am SO grateful, but that isn't always what I comment on.   Also, I don't have any wisdom to add, but I am so sorry that your husband is still not taking responsibility for his part in the problems in your family.  For what it is worth, I really admire the responsibility that you take, but I think you take on too much of it at times.

Ellen, yes I understand about the *hard sell* issue now that he finally told me.  I just don't understand why it takes an act of congress for the man to actually discuss with me the root of an issue.  It is like admitting something that thousands of other ppl experience somehow is too embarrassing for him or makes him feel small or something.   Is tremendously frustrating for the mate on the other side to be guessing what the problem is, and 1/2 the time guessing completely wrongly when a simple convo would solve it all.

Hi Aspen, i too have a ring

Hi Aspen, i too have a ring delimma. Been married for 14 years. He took me out when we were dating to pick out a ring, i was very uncomfortable because i didnt want to seem like gold digger, so i picked out what i always liked and what always caught my eye as pretty. It wasnt a traditional 1 diamond, it was smaller diamonds in a row (3) and just smaller... My fingers are small.... So he goes back the very next day, buys a ring(small-looked like a class ring v shape with triangle diamond) and proposes to me at his brothers house. It is the most hideous thing i have every seen. So, here is this proposal of marriage with an ugly cherry on top. I was nice, never said anything, but, every time i look at my wedding ring (band, i dont wear the engagement ring) i feel so low and unimportant and just undervalued. So when we went to get wedding bands, i just got a matching gold band to match his... Nothing spectacular, just ho hum and every day when i see it, i think of how awful i felt. I, too, am not materialistic, i dont wear jewelry at all. it's just hard because the wedding ring was blessed and it's a forever ring. You really dont want to change it, or be looked down on because I was so low to not like it or appreciate it. I dont know, i pick out (buy) my own presents for birthday and xmas now. It limits his feeling bad and my feeling bad. If i want something, i just get it for myself from the kids. He has spoken about replacing it (engagement ring), but i really dont feel worthy to get another one. And... Why? I'm already married, whats the point? Seems like you and your guy are doing great and there is really no time limit on a forever ring... Take your time getting it, i know he would like to give it to you on this vacation, but, it'll come when the time is good for your finances... And this could be an extention of your anniversary, another reason to keep celebrating.

um.... yeah.

***I just don't understand why it takes an act of congress for the man to actually discuss with me the root of an issue.  It is like admitting something that thousands of other ppl experience somehow is too embarrassing for him or makes him feel small or something.***

That's not necessarily ADD.  I can't get my husband to talk about stuff easily either.  And *I* am the one with ADD - the one with the "problem!"

Great Story

Not all of this is ADD, ask anyone male or female how well the actual rings match the "dream" and you will hear stuff.  No matter how plain or fabulous the rings are. 

Consider this:  It's clear that if you can tell the story in so much detail so many years later, the ring matters.  If you don't do it now, you will just be adding to the story of how your ring got messed up again.  Rings are supposed to be a token or emblem of your marriage, but not that kind!  ;)  If you can afford it, get it, but not until you see the real thing, not a fuzzy cell phone picture.  Remember, you thought you knew what you were getting the first time.  Plan a lunch, a visit to the jeweler, make it a celebratory event, not a "checking to make sure he isn't screwing it up" event.  Then try not to build up too much detail about how he plans to give it back to you... it sounds like he is excited and will make it memorable, if you just wait and see.  and finally... good for you!  I'm allergic to jewelry and have never been able to wear mine except for a half hour or so on our anniversary.