One of the first things fought over is property, more specifically the ring. Who gets to keep it? Is it considered a gift?
If you ever get to sit around and watch court shows during the day, especially divorce court, women use the gift excuse very often. This leads me into my next question: Why do we consider engagement rings as a gift? Personally, I feel that engagement rings are a promise or intent to engage in marriage. I feel that if it is the woman’s decision or fault that the engagement is called off she should have to give the ring back. I look at the ring like a contractual agreement. If you break the contract, you pay up. It’s not a gift because gifts are optional. If a guy proposed to you and didn’t give you a ring, the likelihood of you accepting his engagement is slim to none. Rings during engagements are not optional.
Now the same formula goes for men. You lose the right to get the ring returned if you were the cause of the engagement falling apart. If you decide you don’t want to be with her anymore, she keeps the ring. That was your decision, not hers. If you were all over town sowing your wild oats, guess what, ring is hers. She didn’t do anything wrong so don’t debate her, let her keep the ring and do with it what she sees fit. That includes selling it for a few comfort items like bags, shoes and if she’s lucky a car.
Obviously there are sticky situations in which the engagement is mutually called off but that’s when you look at the bigger picture. The bigger picture being, what do you really NEED the ring for and is it worth the headache you’ll have to go through to fight for it? If it’s worth it, go for it, but the best thing is to leave the relationship with your dignity. This goes for men and women.