We had a couple of friends staying with us this weekend. 30 year old single, professional women from the Bay Area. They have good jobs, fun, and did I say single?
Well the topic came up about how much to spend on engagement rings. And how DeBeers has bruted about the 3 month salary rule. That you need to spend 3 months of income to propose. This prompted my DH to laugh and say he got off easy because 3 months of graduate income was peanuts (and yes it was). I believe my ring was maybe $1500, but I picked it out and I couldn't believe he would spend that much! Yep my Mr. Scrimp! To blow $1500 was a ridiculous amout of money about 2 months of income at that time!
But now, these women were saying that they would accept any ring given to them at 30+. But the single 30 year old guys we went out with (we were all friends from college/graduate school), called them on it and said "NO WAY!" They say this policitally correct statement that they don't need a 1 carat diamond solitaire set in platinum now, to look good, but when it came down to it, would they really accept a cheaper ring?
I had to call them on it too. I don't believe any of my single girlfriends would accept a ring as inexpensive as my ring. I certainly would not. And BEFORE you launch into me I'll explain why.
Right now if I were single I would demand any man I marry to be financially responsible. He can have CC debt, but only if he's in the process of paying it off. He can have a car loan, but if he realizes the problem. If he's unwilling to pay off debt and take responsibility and change his ways, no way am I going to be involved with him. It's a deal breaker. I would expect that any man in his 30s be more responsible with his finances.
And I would understand that he can't buy me an expensive ring because he's paying off debt. But if he can't buy me a ring because he's blowing it on everything else, there are bigger problems. And that's the truth. I can understand him saying, "no ring because I have debt, am saving for a house DP." I'd be in heaven, but to tell me I need a 2 week vacation to bahamas? Or a leased BMW?
So I have trouble believing that women in their 30s would accept a very inexpensive engagement ring without good reason. And I have to side with the 30-something men that it's just BS. I will say that in your 20s, you're more flexible and probably more willing to overlook financial irresponsibility. That you are more likely to marry for passion/fun and not examine a person's financial decisions.
But me, Mrs. Save? Well if I couldn't find another Mr. Scrimp, I'd have to find at least a Mr. Save.