Why I need a ring but say I don't-My feminist dilemma

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Why I need a ring and I say I don't:

Big and I have been dating for over two years now, we've moved in together after living in different cities.  I moved a whole state north, the landscape is beautiful and the rain constant in Oregon.  I made a huge commitment and took a big risk leaving my job, my family and support system. I truly thought that I would be okay with all of these risks, but something is bothering me... I still don't have the ring.

The feminist part of me wrestles with this thought, I shouldn't need this, I'm above needing such materialistic proclaimations of love and devotion, someone showing me they care, loving me, and supporting my goals and visions should be enough shouldn't? I feel guilty for wanting the sparkling rock that many of my fellow Millenials view as unimportant or even a throw back. Being committed to someone doesn't have to mean  wedding bells. It's true that marriage has become more of a marketing sector than a rite of passage. So why do I feel like I need that Cinderella moment so badly?

My mother always told me to never depend on a man. Good advice no matter what, but I think this particular advice stemmed from the betrayal she experienced in her first marriage. She is the kind of person who keeps her promises, does everything in her power to succeed and is one of the strongest people I know, which is why the betrayal was so deep when her first husband and my biogical father left our family.

She had made the promise, said the words, took her vows seriously and done what she'd always wanted to do, start a family; never had she expected to have to do it alone. She spent years proving how strong a single mom has to be and I will always remember what kind of sacrifice that took on her part and she will always be an angel to me.

I think my need for validation as a woman is tied up in the traditional progression of a relationship, if my relationship is not progresssing at the "acceptable" rate, then there must be something terribly wrong with me right? Even though I know this to be untrue intellectually, the scars of being abandonded at such a young age, I think have mainfested themselves in bad relationship choices in the past and my need for the validation now.

Somehow I feel as if the person I've been with for over two years isn't ready to make a life long decision, then there is something lacking in me, it must be a fault within me. That ring, as terrible as it sounds is my emotional security, the physical manifestation of love and scarfice on his part that validates me. The added conundrum is that I have always believed in controlling your own destiny, taking charge of your life, but in this case I want to be wanted, I don't want to prod or push someone into what should be the most romantic decision of your life. As badly as I want to hear the bells, I can't help but wonder if maybe I'm letting other people shape how I view my relationship.

I feel guilty needing this kind of traditional committment, especially when I have someone who is already so very committed to my dreams and aspirations, someone willing to put their behind on the line for me.Truth is I know the ring isn't what makes my relationship successful, we laugh, we love and we support one another and in the end bling or no bling, that's what matters.

-Until next lovlies,


  1. i'm the same boat and love this post. it rings so true to me. i am waiting for a ring (kinda) as well and though i know i am loved and don't need to be anxious about, it seems like everyone around me and everyone else is taking a step like this. rough stuff, but we'll get through it!
    kw, ladiesinnavy

  2. I've been married twice. The first time, I was 19 and my then husband was about to leave for his first tour in Iraq 1. The second time I got married, it was to a man I had dated for a number of years. I didn't actually want to get married, but I wanted some 'thing' that I couldn't even name. So I thought 'promise ring' and he laughed at me. A few months later, 9/11 happened and he proposed. I said no, then said yes. I knew that, like you, there was something I wanted, but even then I wasn't sure what it was. My mom was a big fan of 'take care of yourself' and I always have, but it felt like I should try the more conventional route that the world says we're supposed to want.

    Sometimes, a person commits in the way they know how, but it doesn't match what society says it the 'right' way - but like Kelsey said above me, I bet you'll work this through and I look forward to being a new reader who gets to follow along.


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