Should you sell your engagement ring (or wedding band) after divorce?

sell wedding ring

Short take:

Don't hold on to a token of a relationship gone wrong —  sell your bridal jewelry to Worthy and use the money for a positive new start. 

More info:

I had a really spectacular engagement ring.

It wasn't that it was huge or particularly expensive.

It was unique — the 24-carat yellow gold band consisted of a half-dozen hand-hammered connected spheres, each centered with a very nice diamond.

It was totally my style, and it got lots of attention (which is also my style).

When I divorced, I put the wedding rings in the safe in my house.

In the back of my mind, I thought I would give them to my daughter one day — a token of the marriage that produced her.

Plus, I just wasn't ready to sell the engagement ring — or part with that time of my life.

I see now I wasn't ready to face it.  When you’re ready to sell your engagement ring and wedding band, check out Worthy.

How to sell your engagement ring (or wedding band)

    1. Why sell your engagement ring?
    2. Where to sell your engagement ring
    3. How to sell your engagement ring
    4. Fees
    5. Sell other types of fine jewelry and watches
    6. Where to sell diamonds and gold online
    7. Testimonials

Why sell your engagement ring?

Then, a few summers ago, I had a change of heart.

I thought to the handful of people I know who had used wedding rings left over from marriages that had ended in divorce.

Some of those rocks were impressive – far more expensive than the young couple could have afforded on their own.

It always struck me as bad karma to start a life together with a token from another couple's less-than-ideal story.

I am a big, big believer that things have power. Whether material possessions actually absorb and retain energy from the people and experiences around them, or if it is your own memories and feelings that give the object influence over you, I’m not sure.

But if your walls are lined with pictures of family members who you disdain, that is bad mojo.

That token from a vacation on which you fought mercilessly with your BFF is a reminder of sour times – not margaritas on the beach.

If you surround yourself with things that remind you of the relationship from which you are trying to start anew, well, change that up.

So, I decided to sell my engagement ring.

I did some research, and since it is a brand name designer (Gurhan is a known Turkish jeweler, his stuff is sold at Saks 5th Avenue and Neiman Marcus), it made sense to find a local jewelry store that would pay for that intrinsic value.

What you need to know about selling diamonds before you sell your engagement ring

I called a local Gurhan boutique, which recommended the jewelry buyer that I used.

You can search Yelp or CitySearch for a reputable local jeweler (or sell your jewelry online).

I admit that the cash was less than I'd hoped, but after some research, I understood that there is a significant difference between retail and resale value of jewelry. It is what it is.

I used the money to send my kids to Europe with their dad to visit relatives there. It seemed a just use of those funds.

Plus, it felt good to rid my home and mind of that significant marriage memento.

Before you sell your diamond engagement ring, or other precious jewelry, first educate yourself about diamonds, as well as the valuing and pricing process.

Related: How to sell an engagement ring

How to tell if a diamond is real

While a laboratory test (more on that below) is the only way to be certain whether your diamond is real, there are some easy ways to test at home:

  1. If your diamond is unmounted (not set in jewelry), simply drop the gem into a glass of water. A real diamond will sink to the bottom. A fake will float.
  2. Try the fog test: Blow a warm breath on the diamond (as if you are fogging your glasses or a window). A real diamond will quickly dissipate the fog, while a fake stone will hold the fog for a few seconds.
  3. Look with a magnifying glass. All but the very rarest, highest quality diamonds have small, natural flaws and imperfections. A fake will be “perfect” — without any flaws.
  4. Heat test it. Hold the stone with tweezers and hold above a lighter or candle flame for 45 seconds, then drop into an icy glass of water. A real diamond will not be affected by the extreme temperatures, while a fake will likely shatter.

How much are diamonds worth?

If you're sure your stone is in fact a real diamond, now it is important to understand it's characteristics, which is how the value, and market price are determined.

4 C's of diamonds

The jewelry industry has long used the “4 C's of diamonds” as an easy way to understand all the ways the gemologists and buyers determine how much you can sell your engagement ring or other diamond jewelry.

A diamond's cut

A diamond's cut is the way a stone is finished. A skilled diamond cutter chooses to make precision facets that minimize a stone's natural flaws, and enhances its natural beauty, brilliance and shine.

A diamond grader looks for a stone cut with symmetry, precision, and polish, as well as attractive proportions. The Gemological Institute of America's grades a cut on a scale ranging from Excellent to poor.

A diamond's color

Contrary to popular belief, most diamonds are not pure white. In fact, the most valuable diamonds include those in shades of bright yellow (“canary diamonds”), green, red, and blue, and are called “fancy diamonds” and are graded on a scale of their own.

Diamonds also come in shades of brown (“cognac diamonds”), and even black, though these tend to be less valuable than white diamonds.

Most white diamonds are usually various shades of pale yellow. The brighter the white, the more brilliant the stone tends to be, and the greater the value.

The GIA's color grading scale for white diamonds ranges from D (colorless) to Z (light yellow). GIA's color scale:Diamond 4 c's color

Diamond clarity

Diamonds are stones, and all but exceptionally rare diamonds hav flaws. That is part of what makes them interesting and special, though the fewer the flaws and inclusions (blemishes inside of the stone), affect the brilliance — and value.

4 Cs diamond clarity

GIA's diamond clarity scale: 

Carat

A carat is the most objective of the 4 C's. It is simply the weight of the stone. A carat = 200 milligrams. Each carat is divided into 100 units, or “points.” A diamond that weighs .4 carats would be called a “40-point carat,” or a “40-pointer.”

The value of a diamond is a combination of all 4 C's — a large diamond with many inclusions is likely worth less than a smaller, clear, white diamond.

GIA certification

There are just a couple internationally recognized jewelry grading laboratories, and these include the Gemological Institute of America, or GIA, based in New York City, and the International Gemological Institute, or IGI, based in Antwerp, Belgium.

Worthy works with both of these laboratories, which provide the most respected, independent, third-party certifications (a.k.a. lab reports) on your jewelry.

A certification, or grading report, is not the same as an appraisal.

An appraisal is typically done by a single jeweler, such as a jewelry store owner, based on their expert opinion. Some of these appraisers and jewelers are certified by GIA, but that does not make their appraisal “GIA certified.” GIA and IGI laboratories are equipped with extremely sophisticated grading equipment, and they provide value estimates based on databases of millions of recent sales.

An appraisal for insurance purposes (commonly provided by local jewelers), is typically much, much higher than the actual resale value of your diamond jewelry.

A GIA certificate, or IGI certificate, provides definitive grading information about your diamond or gemstone ring, earrings, necklace, brooch, or bracelet. The certificate will also provide a market value range for your item. Expect to pay $100 to $200 for most reports, though more valuable jewelry will cost more to grade.

If you chose to sell your engagement ring or other diamond or gemstone jewelry at Worthy, you will get a free IGI or GIA certificate, which is yours to keep, even in the event you chose not to sell.

What is a GIA report check?

Just as there are a lot of fake diamonds on the market, there are also a lot of fake GIA reports. If you are buying or selling jewelry, and you want to double-check whether the information on a GIA certificate is authentic (or if you lost your lab report), you can quickly enter the certificate number on GIA's site, and immediately access the report for free.

How much is a 1 carat diamond worth?

As outlined, there are many factors that determine the value of your diamond, including the cut, clarity, color, carat weight, as well as style, setting and the market at the time of sale.

The price you would pay for a diamond in a store, or retail price, is much higher than what you can expect to receive if you sold your diamond to a jeweler, or an online diamond buyer, or at auction.

Keep in mind: The large, center stone is mostly what determines your ring's value, not the total carat weight of all the stones combined.

Here are a few recent sales at Worthy.com:

1.16 carats oval-cut halo ring, H color, I1 clarity, sold at auction for $1,332

1.13 carats pear-cut, F color, VS1 clarity, sold at auction for $4,050

1.2 carats, round-cut solitaire ring, F color, VS1 clarity, sold at auction for $5,767

How much is a 2 carat diamond worth?

Again, these are prices based on the size and quality of the center stone, not total carat weight of all the diamonds in the piece. 

Here are a few recent Worthy sales of rings with center stones of approximately 2 carats:

2.02 carats cushion-cut solitaire ring, I color, SI2 clarity, sold at auction for $6,754

2.54 carats cushion-cut bridal set, J color, SI1 clarity, sold at auction for $8,827

2.01 carats round-cut, F color, SI1 clarity, sold at auction for $14,820

Do diamonds appreciate in value over time?

In other words, Is a diamond a good investment?

In terms of money, the short answer is: No. You are not likely to see your diamond jewelry appreciate in value over time.

In fact, expect that the price your receive at auction or from even a very reputable diamond buyer will be substantially lower than what you paid for it.

The reasons include:

  • Diamond buyers are really only interested in the center stone, which they can repurpose into other, more contemporary pieces of jewelry, or custom items for their clients.
  • The retail price you paid includes the design, smaller side stones, and the retail experience. A diamond wholesale buyer will melt the metal down to scrap.

This video does a good job explaining why you will get less money for your diamond than you paid for it:

That said, there are countless good reasons to sell your jewelry for cash. These include:

  • You need the money.
  • You don't wear or enjoy or like the jewelry, and so could use the cash from a sale to pay for a practical bill or an experience or purchase that you would enjoy.
  • The jewelry is a gift or inheritance attached to someone whom you have a negative or complicated relationship. In other words: The jewelry has bad energy for you. Cleanse that!

How to sell your jewelry online for the highest price

I did a search online of places to sell bridal jewelry online. Here is a post I did of all the top places to sell your jewelry online. If you have a significant ring, loose diamond (or branded watch) you expect would fetch more than $1,000 at market, I recommend Worthy, an online auction site that makes it very easy to sell all fine jewelry online, for a fair price.

Best yet, you can get a very good idea of whether Worthy is right for you even before you commit to working with them.

I like Worthy because their system is very transparent, they have an A+ Better Business Bureau rating, and their website is very easy to use.

They have historically been just focused on being a diamond buyer, but have branched out into high-end watches and are looking to expand further in the future.

Plus, there are dozens of reviews and video testimonials from very happy customers.

Check out my Worthy review to learn more.

How to sell your engagement ring online:

  1. Go to Worthy.com
  2. Enter your name and email, along with basic information (diamond color, carat weight, clarity, etc.) about your jewelry, including size and grade of your jewelry or stone.
  3. Receive an estimated market value for your piece right then and there. This whole process takes about 2 minutes.
  4. A very nice customer service representative calls to answer all your questions, and tell you what will happen next.
  5. Ship your item. If that price suits you, Worthy will send a FexEx delivery person to your house the next business day (or sometimes the same day! That blew my mind!), in which you send the jewelry, diamond or watch to them — Worthy pays for all shipping and insures the item for up to $1 million. Sweet!
  6. Agree on a “reserve price,” or the lowest price you are willing to accept.
  7. Your item is auctioned. Worthy will put your jewelry in front of at least 100 potential buyers worldwide, who can then bid on your item.
  8. Receive an offer within 7 days of Worthy receiving your item.
  9. Get paid. After you confirm the sale, you'll receive payment within 24 hours.

Selling heirloom or estate jewelry or a watch? I write about that selling antique and estate jewelry here.

Fees and guarantees

Worthy takes up to 22 percent of the sale price.

They are very transparent: if they don't sell your item for at least the reserve price, they return it to you, free of charge, no questions asked.

I also love that Worthy will pay you $100 if you successfully sell your auctioned item to an independent jeweler for a price higher than Worthy was able to offer.

Sell other types of fine jewelry and watches using Worthy

I have worked with Worthy for almost three years and have watched their reputation and service grow. So many women that follow me mention that they had a good experience selling their diamond engagement ring and other jewelry with Worthy, and had a good experience.

Worthy has grown and will help you sell other fine jewelry for the best price through their market place.

I researched the top places to sell loose diamonds online.

I also wrote about how to sell valuable necklaces, watches, and bracelets. Not sure what to do with that pretty Tiffany engagement ring? Read my post on selling Tiffany jewelry for the best price.

Heirloom, inherited, estate and antique jewelry are often confusing and emotional assets that can earn the owner money to honor their loved one in a meaningful way. Check out the estimated value of your jewelry box.

More ways to sell diamonds and gold jewelry

If you specifically want to research selling diamond jewelry or loose diamonds or gemstones, there are some quality resources online.

If your jewelry is modest, there are other options.

In my jewelry box were a couple of modest gold and diamond rings that a relative had given me when I married. Time to go!

I did some research and decided to try to sell the rings at CashforGoldUSA and CashforDiamondsUSA (they have the same parent company), one of those places that advertise on TV.

Those sites always seemed super-cheesy. But I researched this one.

The parent company, CJ Environmental, has a BBB rating of B+. Even better: A Fox News undercover investigation of three of the top-ranking websites that promise to buy your gold for top-dollar found that CashforGoldUSA paid customers 3x the other sites!

From past research I've done as a business journalist on selling gold jewelry (including dental fillings), I know mail-in services like this can be a good deal, as can your local pawn shop.

Just research them first.

I decided to try CashforDiamondsUSA.

It turned out to be really easy.

I plugged in my name and address on their website, they sent me a mailer, I stuck the jewelry in it, dropped it in the mailbox and two weeks later got a check (they also give you a tracking number to chart it online).

I was pleasantly surprised.

One of the rings – 12-carat gold with a couple of small diamonds – fetched a $159 check.

The other, similar, but of indeterminate quality, was actually returned.

I was at first disappointed, but the rejection made me trust the company more.

They were being honest: Nothing personal, the return implied, but your crappy ring is dead to us.

*Note, CashforGoldUSA has nothing to do with the scandal- and lawsuit-embroiled Cash4Gold.

Let go of old things, it makes space for new

The bottom line is that I sold an engagement ring that I didn't use, no longer wanted, and kept me holding on to a relationship that I was no longer in.

Plus, I got some cash that I needed at the time.

I don’t think it was insignificant that same month I started my first significant relationship in two years.

I also think that selling those diamond and gold rings has something to do with the fact that my ex and I have been getting along better than since before our split.

In ways I don't fully understand, I was freed.

Start the process of letting go of old things >>

Testimonials

Sierra Fein: “I recently used your services to sell an engagement and a wedding ring that I no longer needed after my divorce. When I was emotionally ready to sell these pieces, I went to my local jewelry store and was really disappointed with the small amount that they were willing to offer me. Using Worthy was so easy. I felt very comfortable once I spoke with a customer service representative. I received shipping labels, and I was able to watch the live auction. It over exceeded my reserve price and with the money, I am able to go back to school to become a teacher. Thanks so much, and I am happy to recommend your services to anybody else I know that’s in a similar situation.”

Christa Carrell: “HI wanted to say thank you again for helping me to sell a ring on your site. Everything went great, the process was seamless. You guys answered any questions that I had and I will definitely recommend you in the future. Again, thank you so much. I’m going to be using that money towards a vacation pretty soon.”

Kelly Witte: “I recently sold my Rolex Datejust women’s stainless steel watch on Worthy.com. My experience was a wonderful one. I was extremely impressed with the attentiveness and the response time from my sales representative. I also felt that he tried to get me the maximum amount of money that I wanted for my product, and I was very pleased with them. I am looking forward to the next purchase that I will be making with the money, which is a new upgraded version of my watch. So, I am extremely excited and I would definitely recommend Worthy.com for anything you want to sell in the future.”

Maura: “I have been looking to sell my ring for at least five years and I did not find any good ways of selling it. When I say “good ways” I definitely wasn’t coming close to getting the value that I would have liked to have gotten for the ring. I just wanted to sit on it, like a safety net. I felt like I had my safety net ready when I needed it, even though there was no way to actually get a decent price for it. So, when I discovered Worthy, of course, I wanted to look into it to see what I could get for my ring. I had a minimum in my head of what I wanted to get, and when I spoke to somebody at Worthy, which was nice when I went to the website, somebody called me to follow up, which I think was very helpful because it gave me the human touch of the process which continued throughout. So, I was very happy. When Mary called me, she asked me questions that were right on par with what I would have wanted somebody to ask. She made it very easy for me. I ended up coming into New York City because I’m close by in Connecticut, so I made it even easier for myself by popping in and making an appointment.”

Learn more about how much you could sell your engagement ring for at Worthy >>


How about you? Do you still have your engagement ring? Or did you sell your wedding ring, give it away, turn it into a necklace, or throw it out the car window into a ditch on the way home from the court date finalizing your divorce? Please share in the comments …


About Emma Johnson

Emma Johnson is a veteran money journalist, noted blogger, bestselling author and an host of the award-winning podcast, Like a Mother with Emma Johnson. A former Associated Press Financial Wire reporter and MSN Money columnist, Emma has written for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Glamour, Oprah.com, U.S. News, Parenting, USA Today and others. Her #1 bestseller, The Kickass Single Mom (Penguin), was named to the New York Post's ‘Must Read” list.Emma regularly comments on issues of modern families, gender equality, divorce, sex and motherhood for outlets like CNN, Headline News, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Fox & Friends, CNBC, NPR, TIME, MONEY, O, The Oprah Magazine and The Doctors. She was named Parents magazine’s “Best of the Web,” “Top 15 Personal Finance Podcasts” by U.S. News, and a “Most Eligible New Yorker” by New York Observer.A popular speaker, Emma presented at the United Nations Summit for Gender Equality. Read more about Emma here.

162 Comments

  1. Katt on December 22, 2015 at 4:51 pm

    I have a beautiful canary diamond w platium band 4 carats from my long term marriage. Now my new guy wants to use it to buy me an engagement ring. My guy does not need the money he just IMO being cheap! Now I’m rethinking on if to even to stay with him. Just makes me feel like I’m not worthy .

    • Karen L on January 17, 2016 at 4:09 am

      My second ex husband used the diamond from my first engagement ring as a down payment on the ring he gave me. Then we were saddled with a 12 month ring payment at $450/ month after we got married so I really contributed to most of this ring. Not to mention he admittedly had an affair within the first 8 months of our marriage while I was 6 months pregnant with our daughter. I chose to stay for many reasons (not playing the victim here but I did choose to sit tight, knowing I would eventually get out of this) and focused on my health, pregnancy and other child. Every day I looked at that ring and it meant nothing to me so I can’t believe I STILL have it in my damn jewelry box?! It’s been 2 years since our DIE-Vorce & he’s already remarried with an infant! What am I thinking?
      Thanks for the article Emma! The sell of this tainted ring has now moved to top priority! A male friend of mine told me to sell it a while back as he happily sold his, right after HE threw his Mont Blanc pen that he’d signed his divorce papers with off a bridge & into the Chattahoochee River (Atlanta).
      Also, knowing the markup & that I probably won’t get much, ( WE paid $6500) so perhaps what little ROI I do get will help me fund a vacation! I need a trip to London to see a great friend/single mom who just moved there & will give me a tour/free place to stay & loads of laughter! Cheers damn it!

      • Emma on January 19, 2016 at 4:08 pm

        All good stuff here – and the pen in the river cracked me up! Ha!

    • Gary on February 7, 2016 at 2:43 pm

      I think you deserve each other

    • RC on July 14, 2017 at 1:56 am

      A canary can easily be worn as a right hand ring or used in a new piece. That you posted your dilemma here makes me think if you let him trade it in to pay for your new ring that the new ring will carry that negativity with it. I wouldn’t let him have it.

  2. Awen on February 6, 2016 at 12:17 am

    Hi,
    I have an engagement ring that I want to sell 18K thick white gold band 1.54ct D/SI2 EGL certified brilliant solitaire. Any ideas, where to sell my ring in Dallas?
    Thanks!!

  3. Gary on February 7, 2016 at 2:41 pm

    Seems to me if a man gives an engagement ring to the woman he marrys and they later get divorced then she should return the ring to him along with the wedding ring or as a minimum sell them both and split the proceeds

    • Carrie on November 30, 2016 at 1:32 am

      I have been reading through the comments and feel bad for you, Gary. It sounds like you’ve had some really bad experiences with women who took advantage of you. I care about that. It seems you’re reaching conclusions that all the women sharing their stories here are also taking advantage of their exes. Maybe some of them have. My husband sold some very precious possessions of his to buy me a spectacular diamond ring for our engagement. We had some difficulty in our marriage before he passed away two years ago. Had we ended our marriage I would not have given the ring back to him (he absolutely never would have asked for it) but I wouldn’t have been able to sell it either because we always deeply loved one another, even during our hardest times. Not everyone has such fortune. Surely you can see that for some it may be very healing emotionally to eliminate a symbol of their crushed dreams especially when the split is not amicable? And in some of these examples women have stated that they needed the money the sale of the ring provided. Unless a woman has broken an engagement or otherwise been egregiously responsible for the marriage dissolution it doesn’t seem intuitive to me that she’d be obliged to return the ring. We all have to take our own path and do the best we can. I think that’s what the majority of the women who have shared here have done.

      • RC on July 14, 2017 at 1:19 am

        Beautifully said, Carrie. So sorry for your loss. ((hugs))

  4. Rebecca on February 25, 2016 at 4:09 pm

    I held onto my engagement and wedding rings for about a year after my divorce. At first I wanted to pawn them or do Cash4Gold but I wasn’t going to get much. Both rings were 14 K white gold and 1/4 CT diamonds. I would have been lucky to get $100 for both. But since both rings were bought at and registered with Kays Jewelry I talked to them and they gave me a great deal. Just for my engagement ring they gave me $700 credit toward a $1400 purchase. So when my new man and I decided to get married, I picked out my new engagement ring and paid for half of it with my old one! Some people may not agree with it but I think it was a great investment!

    • Emma on February 25, 2016 at 4:17 pm

      Sounds like you got a great deal! Congrats on the new relationship :)

  5. Tracy on March 2, 2016 at 7:55 pm

    I kept the main diamond to turn into a necklace or ring from my daughter when she turns 16. Although my marriage went sour, I have no regrets because I have two beautiful children. She needs to know that she was wanted and loved and that for a very long time, we were happy.

    I sold the small diamonds and gold, along with some other gold pieces to earn money to revamp my master bedroom and bathroom after the divorce. I kept the house and couldn’t wait to make it my own. I have no regrets in selling my ring. By the way, sold his ring for cash, too, since he left it here.

  6. Annie on March 6, 2016 at 2:17 pm

    I threw mine out the window and it at the time felt wonderful. I felt relief.

  7. Carmela on April 9, 2016 at 2:53 am

    Address shock of retail versus wholesale (which you may very well be selling it back for). I otherwise sold it because I felt like a fraud. R that he still had some control that I wasn’t even aware of. Let it go. I cried at the store. So many triggers. And it was so cold and symbolic while they undid the prongs, to identify and weigh it.

    • Carmela on April 9, 2016 at 2:54 am

      Had. Can I delete my picture please?

  8. Joan on April 11, 2016 at 11:36 pm

    I went to the exact middle of the Golden Gate Bridge, and threw my wedding band over the edge into the water. Apparently a friend told me that is what a lot of people do from the bay area after they divorce. However, I did have the stones removed and made into a beautiful necklace that I designed myself. I chose to keep it because hey, I did get my children from this period of my life, so it wasn’t all bad…

  9. Kara on April 18, 2016 at 1:46 pm

    Thank you for this post. I have been divorced for 2 years now and my rings are sitting in a box in the closet. My engagement ring and wedding ring were from my grandmother and I feel so torn. I adore the rings and my grandparents, but they just bring me such heartache.

    • Emma on April 18, 2016 at 2:00 pm

      Wondering if you could give or sell them to a family member?

  10. Sandra on April 21, 2016 at 12:15 am

    I have been divorced for 14 years. My engagement and wedding ring are in a safe deposit box at the bank. My thought was always to give the engagement diamond to my oldest son and my diamond wedding band to my youngest son so they could use what they wanted to create the rings for their future wife. You have an interesting take on rings (one I can see and understand) -I never looked at my rings as carrying the “bad” that caused our divorce—always knew my kids were born out of love and associate rings with the good that once was. My sons are 20 and 19. I have no regrets in life. I would do it all the same way just to have my kids! I guess by the time my divorce was finalized I was content with knowing I gave my marriage my all and there was nothing I could do to save it (you can’t make someone want to stay when they want to go). I never looked back after divorce. Took me years before I ever thought of dating someone but I have been happily involved with someone for the past 7 years. My rings symbolize the good in my ex that produced my sons….not the bad in my ex that ended our marriage. Just my take on things—doesn’t make me right or wrong…just the way I choose to view it. Thank you for sharing your story on rings.

    • William on November 16, 2016 at 2:32 pm

      Thank you for posting that Sandra:
      Some of the rest of what I see here stings. I have been divorced for two years, albeit not a decade yet, My ex wife and I share three young children and I struggle to build a more amicable co-parenting relationship. I have my band and she our her engagement and band…I bought all three. I wasn’t rich and am not now for sure, but every time I look at the band I think of the day we bought them, and the happy times that came after. never the arguments or the errors or the deep sadness that came after my ex wife walked out of the door of our home. I wore the ring in defiance and desperation through the first 8 months of my separation and then carried it bundled in boxes and a velvet bag for months after that–I was convinced that I would get to some place we had been that I would think was the perfect place to bury it…I couldn’t bring myself to letting go of it, and what had failed in that way…I certainly cannot see myself selling it anymore than I could see myself carving off a chunk of my heart and selling that because she had been attached to that in some bad way. I’m not exactly sure what I will do with it,but I am certain that in some way, it will be stuck with me, and I it for the duration that I bought intended it for…Aren’t the lessons we get from our walk through life, those painful and those joyous worthy of a token reminder now and again. shouldn’t we be humbled by our shortcomings and treasure the joy that paralleled it…No life experience will ever sit in the same place as within my heart, mind or soul as cradling a women I was deeply enamored with between my legs, peering over her shoulder with my arms encircling her and her hands in mind squeezing together as our son was born…IM KEEPING MY RING!

      • RC on July 14, 2017 at 1:27 am

        Thank you for sharing this. It is a deeply personal decision… If my pieces carried such deep, positive memories of the shared journey, I would feel the same. Mine, though, are reminders of how aline I was during some of the most painful experiences during our marriage and I can’t keep reliving that. But had the birth of our son, or raising him, and such things been truly shared experiences, even if the marriage ultimately ended, I’d hold on to my engagement ring and wedding band…

  11. Steve on April 24, 2016 at 10:27 am

    I believe if the husband is the one who wanted the divorce then the wife should keep it. Then do what she wants with it.
    But if the wife wants the divorce then she should give the ring back to the husband. I don’t see the wedding ring as a gift. I see it as a symbol of love, a way to show your commitment to loving each other “til death do us part”.
    If you don’t want your husband, why do you want the ring he gave you? You end the marriage, return the ring.

    • RC on July 14, 2017 at 1:34 am

      I think it depends a great deal on why the marriage is ending and the general character/spirit of the marriage… Not just who files for the divorce.

    • RC on July 14, 2017 at 1:45 am

      Also, I see the wedding band as the symbol you described…. The engagement ring is kind of like a deposit or a warranty on a future together. Giver breaks the relationship/the future and loses the deposit. Recipient breaks the relationship/future and has to refund the deposit. Wedding bands, unless family heirlooms, should be kept by their respective parties to do with them as they wish.

  12. Lynn Anson on April 28, 2016 at 7:27 pm

    My engagement ring is beautiful and I miss wearing it. It’s been in my safety deposit box for a couple years now. With the trend of black diamonds and chocolate diamonds I decided to switch out the one carat center piece. I wear it on my right hand and it is stunning. I am very happy. I joke that it’s black like my heart. I may turn the original diamond into a necklace or save it for one of my kids.

    • Emma on May 4, 2016 at 2:32 pm

      or sell it for something that will give you joy!

  13. Mitzi Smith on April 28, 2016 at 10:16 pm

    2 years after my divorce I trying to decide what to do with my wedding rings. The more I thought about it them more I kept hearing my mother say a woman should never waste a good diamond. I took the wedding set to a trustworthy and reliable jeweler and he sketched out a necklace using the diamonds. It turned out beautiful and I can pass the diamonds down to my daughter with a story behind it.

    • Emma on May 4, 2016 at 2:32 pm

      sounds like the right solution for you!

  14. Tina on May 6, 2016 at 10:07 pm

    My marriage ended about a year ago, divorced 10 months. I just decide what I am going to go with my engagement ring.
    It is a single 1/2 cts with two 1/4 cta on either side. I and Turing the 1/4 cts into earnings and replacing them with the birth stone of each of my kids.
    Can’t wait to find the right jewelry to do the work.

    • RC on July 14, 2017 at 1:46 am

      I love that idea!

  15. Phoenicia on May 23, 2016 at 5:16 pm

    I’m in that situation currently. I was separated for four years out of our marriage, and now our divorce has been final for 2+ years. I wanted to save the ring for my daughter, but now look at it as a curse. The marriage that I had with her father, I’d never dream of passing it along to her. Now I want to get it out of my house and hopefully find some peace here as well with it gone.

    • Emma on May 23, 2016 at 7:38 pm

      Good thinking!

  16. Sativa on July 19, 2016 at 11:54 am

    I was saving my ring after we divorced I didn’t know why just didn’t want to get rid of it. Then I decided I would make a necklace for my daughter with the diamond when she was older. However I never really put thought into how about getting rid of it and letting go correlate. Anyhow I ended up getting robbed of everything I own pretty much and that was one of the items because I did not have a safe box. Lesson learned in so many ways. But I am actually not sad about it now because when my daughter gets older I will make her, her own diamond necklace for graduation that has no ties to a broken marriage.

  17. Tom Leykis on July 28, 2016 at 1:17 pm

    Like I always say, an engagement ring is nothing more than divorce insurance that your wife will cash in the second she has sex with your best friend. Best thing for guys in America is to NEVER get married. Why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free? Even more when once you marry the woman she actually becomes the cow within a few years.

    • RC on July 14, 2017 at 1:48 am

      Sorry things didn’t work out for you, Tom. Us cows tend to have zero respect for jackasses.

    • Debbie on September 16, 2017 at 12:22 pm

      Your comment speaks volumes about why your wife probably did what she did…I hope you get some counciling and learn to not be so angry at women.

  18. Carma on August 19, 2016 at 12:58 am

    When we got married we were broke and i chose to use what little $$$ we had for a down-payment on a condo instead of a ring. Never ever regretted it.

    • Emma on August 20, 2016 at 6:48 am

      great move :)

  19. Carma on August 19, 2016 at 10:41 am

    Just read Tom’s comment, above. Tom, I can spot guys like you a mile away. Someone damaged you in your past. Your mommy, no doubt. So sorry. She produced a sow’s ear, and you can’t make a good husband out of a sow’s ear anyway.

  20. Patricia on August 20, 2016 at 1:33 pm

    Hi Emma! I’m intrigued by your willingness to send your jewelry in the mail to these online places. How did you know they wouldn’t just keep the jewelry and you’d never hear from them again? Or that they would give you the correct amount owed to you from the sale? Did you have a contract or any other document agreeing to the terms of the sale? I know there are testimonies and endorsements on these sites but sending expensive jewelry via the mail to these sites seems so scary to me!

    • Emma on August 21, 2016 at 7:21 am

      I checked out all the sites mentioned here, all have great BBB ratings and the shipments are indeed insured via FedEx – you can see this all yourself :)

  21. Mitch on August 24, 2016 at 5:03 pm

    Great ideas here, but I don’t seem to understand what I should do with my ring.
    I’m still attached with it and I don’t think I’ll ever want to sell it.
    Anyway, there are many horrible things that people do to their wedding ring after divorce.
    I just don’t know why I’m still having the ring, after all I am the one who suffered!
    May she be happy. Just this.

  22. Ren on September 20, 2016 at 12:57 pm

    Not sure what to do… Divorce after 23 yrs my original engagement ring was picked out as a sapphire not even a diamond and was on clearance for $600 then after being 5 yrs married I worked at a jewelry store and decided to buy myself a diamond and matching did band so I got a nice set retail $6400 but I got it for $3200. Never received any gifts beyond a box of chocolates w stuffed toy and flowers on Valentine’s.. other than that no Christmas, Birthday or even just because .. felt very unappreciated bringing up 5 children… The final straw was finding out that although we both worked the mortgage was behind 5 yrs in payments. Time to move on and take back the reigns. Just have no idea where to begin.

  23. London M on October 8, 2016 at 9:58 am

    To celebrate the finalisation of my divorce from the ex-husband who had 2 affairs and squandered our son’s education trust fund I traded up my 0.5 carat diamond engagement ring for a 5 carat cocktail ring with the jeweller who made the original engagement ring and held a party to celebrate the next chapter of my life. Two older divorced ladies said “Oh well should have had a party and bought ourselves new rings”. Do it for yourself sisters!

  24. Pam on October 30, 2016 at 10:22 pm

    After a 25 year marriage my 2 carat diamond and eternity band wedding ring sat in s safe for 12 years. One of my kids suggested that I should have it remounted and worn on my right hand. I took her advice and redesigned both rings. Love how they came out. They are no longer marriage related to me but two great rings.

  25. Char on November 7, 2016 at 10:31 am

    Right after separating I took off my ring, gathered the rest of the gold, platinum & diamond jewelry my ex gave me and went straight to the jeweler he bought them from. Walked out with $6000. Second best decision I made!

    • Emma on November 7, 2016 at 10:33 am

      love it! What did you use the money for?

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