Manolo Jewelry » I Just Can’t Quit You…

I Just Can’t Quit You…

By La Petite Acadienne

I came across it today while rummaging through my box of “not everyday” jewelry — the stuff that I keep for special occasions, particular outfits, or for sentimental purposes.

It’s a simple, slim trinity ring. Three interlocking bands of white, yellow and rose gold. Cartier it ain’t, but it’s obviously inspired by the design.

It was given to me by a boyfriend from university. I don’t wear it anymore.

Don’t get me wrong: I still like the ring an awful lot. And I no longer have any feelings whatsoever for the ex, not even the idle curiousity of wondering what he’s up to these days. Honestly, if I passed him by in the street, I probably wouldn’t even recognize him.

However, I still don’t feel right wearing it. I’m married now, and adore my husband (who, by the way, has given me some stunning and thoughtfully selected jewelry over the years).  And I just do not and can not feel comfortable wearing jewelry given to me by another man (other than dear old dad, of course).

But I can’t bring myself to throw it out or give it away.  Why? Because I LIKE the ring, dammit. If it weren’t for my own reticence, I’d probably wear it often.

I know that the solution is just to buy a similar ring for myself and to quit bellyaching. And I do intend to get around to that at some point, when my fiduciary responsibilities are not quite so daunting.  In the meantime, however, the ring has really gotten me thinking about the emotional baggage that jewelry tends to carry, and how a piece of jewelry is never fully free, for good or for ill, of the person who gifted that item.

Do you have any pieces of jewelry that you keep but don’t wear, for similar reasons? Or do you immediately perform a symbolic exorcism on all of your jewelry the moment the door closes behind an ex?

How much baggage do your baubles have?



9 Responses to “I Just Can’t Quit You…”

  1. Kristen M Says:

    I have been known to fling jewelry back at an ex. “What am I going to do with this?” He wrote me a note and put the items back on my desk (it was in college). I told him to donate them to a charity or pawn them. I was so angry with him. My now husband actually obtained the very same ring to give me, and it meant so much to me that I wear it as my wedding ring when I feel I’m doing something quite dangerous to be wearing the real thing.

    There were some items from another boyfriend, also now married. They were collected and given to my god-daughter. I happen to be on friendly terms with him and explained it to him later. He thought it was a delightful idea to give them to a non-blood loved one.

  2. gamma Says:

    Jewelry with baggage? I do have a few pieces from my mother-in-law–not that she left them to me, but her daughter indicated they would be discarded, so I snagged them. But now I feel guilty because my MIL has other daughters, and so…what should I do with them? They are not valuable pieces, just costume, but may have sentimental value. But I really don’t want to open a can of worms by distributing them to some, but not others. They sit in a drawer. In my mind, they are a ticking time bomb. I think I will give them to my daughters one day.

  3. Mel Says:

    My maternal grandmother’s blue topaz ring. Due to arthritis she wore as a wedding ring in all of my memory of her. It facinated me as a child due to the unusual sideways shield cut of the stone. But the ring is so very much hers that I’ve never had it on. It’s almost like she’d possess me or haunt me if I slid it on my hand.

  4. Jane2 Says:

    One ex was fond of giving me jewelry….one day after it was All Over, I tossed it all down the garbage chute from the 5th floor. It was lovely.

    I have some old costume jewelry earrings of my mothers….never to be worn by me, but certainly evoke memories.

  5. La Petite Acadienne Says:

    Hm…I used to live on the 15th floor of an apartment building with a chute. The fun of hearing it clinking and clanking all the way down might have been worthwhile.

    I might just wind up selling it for whatever I can get, and then donating the money to a charity — it’ll get it out of the house AND bring in some good karma!

  6. EV Says:

    Well, the one ex who gave me jewelry had absolutely atrocious taste, so I didn’t really have the “love it but can’t wear it anymore” problem…

    I do have a strange relationship with one pendant of mine: a vintage gold charm that was once part of a bracelet my grandmother owned. My parents had the charm set on a gold chain for me. She died when I was very young (maybe 3?), and had Alzheimer’s and dementia for many years before that, so I don’t really have any memory of her as a grandma. I’m told she had an enormous and rather expensive jewelry collection, but gave away or lost most of it due to the Alzheimer’s, and this was very sad for many of her female relatives because they had hoped to inherit it. So now I own a “family heirloom” that apparently has both monetary and sentimental value, but I have absolutely no connection to it myself and it’s not something that I would wear otherwise.

  7. wildflower Says:

    Oo oo I have a great story for this one! When I divorced my sexually deranged (not worth discussing here) ex husband, I gave all of the family heirloom pieces back to his lovely, kind parents who, to the best of my knowledge, had no idea what a monster he was. And all of the new pieces he had bought me went to charity, even the diamond engagement ring and the beautiful, hand-carved wedding band. They were re-worked and auctioned off. Yay!

  8. Jane H. Says:

    My former husband had good taste in jewelry and was generous. Many pieces I continued to wear but a few that had “special” associations I gave to my mother. After she passed away it was nice to find them in her drawer and to have them back again. Enough time has passed that most of my anger has gone and I can just look at them as pretty things that I enjoy.

  9. penguinlady Says:

    I not only have the pretty heart ring that my college boyfriend gave me (to try to rededicate our relationship after he cheated…), but I hold on to my mother’s wedding ring. My parents had a very bad divorce. I just can’t part with either of them. However, I did actually throw away my high school boyfriend’s class ring, because that relationship was toxic and every time I thought or looked at it, it made me feel bad. I think that’s the difference: if holding onto something makes you feel bad, get rid of the thing!

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