My wife and I are separated and she has taken off her wedding ring. I still wear mine because I am committed to fighting for our marriage.
Should I take my ring off to try and relieve pressure on her? Or is it better to keep it on to show her I want the marriage to work? What do you think is the right move?
Short answer? Yes, I think you should still wear your wedding ring, even after your wife takes hers off.
In fact, I think you should continue to wear it until the day that you are no longer a married man.
Honestly, I don't think this question has anything to do with your wife. It's more about you as a man and what you value than about your wife and what she will think. It's not just that you're committed to the marriage, it's that the ring itself signifies being married.
When you take off your wedding ring, you're telling the world that you're unmarried. That's why your wife took hers off. But, regardless of what she chose to do, the fact is that you ARE married.
Your wedding ring symbolizes the type of love that does not end no matter what, even when the very person you love is pushing you away.
Why would you tell the world that you're single when you're not single? It's a lie.
You have probably heard that a wedding ring represents unending love and commitment. It is a circle; it never ends. Your ring symbolizes the type of love that does not end no matter what, even when the very person you love wants you to stop. That's the depth and the seriousness of this type of love.
In my opinion, as long as you remain married, you are bound by vows to demonstrate this unconditional love towards your spouse; it is your husbandly obligation to hold to this commitment. This commitment only ends the day that you are no longer married, and even then many of you will continue holding on.
The Argument for Taking Your Ring Off
With all of that being said, I will admit that there is a case to be made for taking your wedding ring off.
There may be a scenario where taking your ring off COULD increase your chances of getting your wife back, or of allowing her to see you differently.
But, to be clear...
- I can't think of a single time where I saw a man lose his marriage because he kept his wedding ring on after his wife took hers off.
- I CAN think of many times where a husband kept his ring on through thick and thin and ended up getting his wife back.
Possible Reasons to Take Your Ring Off:
- Maybe taking your ring off will show your wife that you no longer want to be with her, and maybe she will find that attractive... Sort of like playing hard to get.
- Maybe your wife is angered by the fact that you continue to wear your wedding ring. In this case, you'll have to decide whether you value making your wife's life potentially better (by getting rid of her peeve) or standing to your values as a man.
- Maybe when your wife sees you without your ring on, it will flip a switch inside her and make her realize what she's lost.
Again, I would comfortably call each of these scenarios hypothetical outliers. There are not many separations where this is true.
Even in these unique hypothetical circumstances where taking the ring off might get you a more favorable reaction from your wife, you still have to balance what you think is right. I don't think there's a right or wrong answer there, although I know which one I'd pick.
It's Up To You
You have to make this choice for yourself:
- Is it more important to stand by the visual representation of your commitment to the marriage?
- Or, is it more important to show your wife you're willing to accept that the marriage might end?
Personally, if it were me, I would ask myself this simple question:
Are you still married?
If the answer is yes, keep your wedding ring on no matter what.
If the answer is no, take your wedding ring off.
Hope this helps any of you who are facing this really tough choice inside your marriage. Trust your gut and don't look back.
With much manly love,
I'm Stephen, the guy behind Husband Help Haven. I'm not a marriage counselor or a lawyer, I'm just a guy on the Internet who has talked to a loooooot of men going through separation... Over 2,000 in the past 5 years. My goal is to give men the tools they need to save their marriage from separation. Read more here