Wedding Rings
by Peggy Vaughan

Wedding rings (and what they once stood for) often become a problem for couples after an affair takes place. In our case, James stopped wearing his wedding ring while he was having affairs (but before we confronted it together). His excuse at the time (after having worn the ring for 11 years without any problem) was that it "turned on his finger and bothered him." A couple of years later (when we still hadn't confronted it, but when I felt almost positive that he was having affairs), I stopped wearing my wedding ring. I still was not ready to face the issue and talk about it, so I saw this as a kind of "silent protest." (I must say my "protest" was not very effective - because he didn't even notice I had removed my ring until 5 months later.)

So neither of us wore wedding rings for several years - until we came up with a creative alternative. Fortunately, we had developed a friendship (which continues to this day) with a woman who is a goldsmith. James had her make me a special ring (not at all like a wedding ring) that was shaped like a flower. In the middle of the flower she placed the diamond from my original engagement ring, calling it a "dewdrop" on the flower. The ring was a surprise - and I absolutely loved it. Shortly thereafter I had her make a ring for James. She used a crown design and called it a "king ring" (for a king of a man.)

It has now been over 25 years since we exchanged those new rings - and both of us still wear them constantly (just like regular wedding rings.) So to the outside world we don't "appear" to be wearing wedding rings, but we know that these rings symbolize our love and commitment in a special way - in fact, in a stronger way than the original "traditional" rings could ever have done. So I encourage couples to come up with their own unique ideas for making a commitment to their marriage, remembering that it doesn't have to conform to just one way.

P.S. Here's an "update" about what happened with my wedding ring:

I had stopped wearing my wedding ring a long, long time ago - and it had just been sitting in a drawer. But then I thought of a creative use for it. The ring had some tiny little diamonds on it - so instead of having them "go to waste," I had them built into a beautiful pair of earrings for my daughter for her 18th birthday. My daughter was thrilled - and I turned a potentially negative symbol into a positive one.

(My daughter is now grown and married with children of her own - and it still makes me happy to recall what I did with my ring.)

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