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Guy Breaks Off Engagement After His Fiancée Complains That The Pricey Ring He Got Her Wasn't Expensive Enough

A guy advised his brother to call off his engagement after noticing tell-tale signs indicating his girlfriend may be a gold digger.

Redditor "NormalBat8" comes from a wealthy family but downplayed their affluent lifestyle.


His parents came from humble backgrounds who raised their kids by encouraging them only to splurge on gifts for people and paying the bills.

But when his older brother's girlfriend complained about the engagement ring's size despite its exorbitant value, the Original Poster (OP) convinced his brother that she was not someone he should spend the rest of his life with. The OP asked if he was ATIA (Am I the A**hole) for causing his brother to end his engagement.

"I would say our family isn't 'Richie rich,' but we are well off," wrote the OP.

"We just aren't materialistic people, we never shop for the sake of shopping, (ex. I only have 2/3 pairs of jeans, but if one is worn out/ too old I would buy another that might be considered overpriced in the 100-250$ range, but will last for a longer time. None of us go shopping as a hobby or for fun)"
"My older brother lives in LA, and was dating this girl for a long time. She has a BA, makes about 40/50k a year."

The family noticed something about the girlfriend they couldn't pinpoint when she made a comment after noticing their luxury vehicles.

"We thought she was very nice and very sweet, but some of the things she said felt odd."
"Once she came home with our brother, saw our parents cars out front (Audi and jag)."
"My brother told her that our parents only ever had used cars that were a little run down, and soaked in crackers/spilled juice/soccer sweat from practice etc so when our youngest sibling finished high school our parents decided to treat themselves for once in their entire lives and bought new cars (after working 80 hour weeks and grinding for most their lives)."
"She laughed and said 'it better not take you more than a few years to buy me one of those (my brother drives a relatively new jeep).'"

Before proposing, the brother asked the OP to help him pick out a ring.

But she strongly disapproved and accused him of being cheap.

"We decided to get her one with a middle stone that was 2.5 carats, with a baguette on each side that was about 1 carat each."
"Brother proposed she said yes but she was upset, saying she expected a bigger ring since he makes enough to buy her 5k ring, and that she can't handle him acting cheap all the time."

cheap natalie tran GIF Giphy

But the ring was anything but cheap.

"He was really upset about this because this ring cost about 40k and was amazing clarity, colour etc. and he researched it excessively and made sure that it was the exact design ring she wanted."
"He called me and got mad at me because I was the one who said he should get the main stone to be 2.5k because bigger than that looks a little tacky and showy."

The OP took this as a divine sign for his brother to break off the engagement.

"I told him that this is probably God waving a red flag and giving him a chance to get out."
"I told him that someone who can't appreciate that 40k (esp since that's how much she makes a year), is a lot to spend on a ring."

After seeing her true colors, the brother called the whole thing off.

The jilted fiancée then took her fury out on the OP and accused him of being a "meddling b*tch."

"She didn't care about how hard he tried to please her, just about the money. He thought it over and agreed and broke it off."
"She called me after he asked her to move out and told me I was a meddling b*tch and my brother will never get married when his family is so nosey."
"I asked my friends about it and they agreed, they said that you only get one engagement ring and she should get the ring she wants. So reddit AITA?"

Anonymous strangers on the internet weighed in to declare if the OP was one of the following:

NTA - Not The A**hole

YTA - You're The A**hole

ESH - Everyone Sucks Here

NAH - No A**holes Here

"NTA. The ring wasn't cheap and tacky but apparently she is." – ShadowCast2550
"Can't imagine being upset by something my partner picked out with thought and care for me, no matter the value." – Its-All-Relativity
"NTA I think sometimes on reddit people confuse meddling with actually caring about people and telling them what needs to be said."
"Sometimes people show you their true colour but people are just blind to it because their emotions get in the way."
"40k is a years salary, but more than that your brother tried hard to make it special he wasn't just trying to spend a lot of cash he was trying to get her something special that he put his heart into."
"If she couldn't focus on that, yeah I think your brother is way better off. You're a good sister and you said what needed to be said." – banana-splitinto-pie

Redditors couldn't get past the cost of the shunned ring.

"NTA. Am I reading this right and your brother spent $40,000 on an engagement ring and it STILL wasn't good enough for her? JFC." – swampmilkweed
"That ring costs the entirety of my student loan balance. I'll probably never see that much money at once in my entire life." – fishvoidy
"I might've been upset that he spent so much on a piece of jewelry, but yeah." – Higglety-Pigglety
"For real. Gonna drop that much cash, get me an engagement CAR."
"That's a decent down payment on a house many places." – Splatterfilm
"I mean, seriously, I can't imagine 40k on anything less then a down payment on a house."
"My dream ring is less then $1500 and they have a nice $800 I would be happy to live with."
"Even these 2-5k rings are kinda crazy to. Diamonds are super overpriced status symbols and if you shop around you can find much nicer quality rings made by artisans with other stones, including clear ones, and even some diamond ones that look so much nicer for so much less then 40k."
"And it doesn't feed into the diamond business's bottom line." – NiktoriaNo

After people commented on the ring's 40K price tag, the OP went into his family's frugal nature.

"Some people are bringing up how crazy the price was. Our parents really struggled in their beginning as they are immigrants, so they would be going to school while raising 4 kids and things were tough."
"So we were always naturally frugal but our parents splurged on important things for us and on life experiences, not on buying material possessions."
"But they did emphasize to us to never be cheap when it comes to presents or paying the bill."
"So with this ring, my brother didn't have a budget he was just going for quality."
"He makes mid to high 6 figures (we all make around that), but I said we don't consider ourselves rich because we don't act like it (always fly economy, only our parents have luxury cars, we don't buy designer clothes/shoes/bag except for maybe some items for work because the environment demands it but we don't go on shopping sprees)."
"Our parents told him though to make sure he picked something special because his wife will be the mother of his children, a sister to his siblings, their new daughter, and his partner in life."
"So he kind of wanted this to be a family heirloom to be passed on to a future child as well. But the way she acted I think he was too focused on making sure that his future partner was happy he missed all those red flags."
"He DID get the ring back though. I know people think she's a huge gold digger and we should have seen it earlier. But my brother met her while he was at Stanford at a party and she was from UC Berkley so we all figured someone who goes to a fancy school like that would rather focus on their own goals than leech off someone else."
"I guess we were wrong hahah."

The OP's instinct appeared to be correct as her behavior proved his brother dodged the bullet.

*If you enjoyed this article, you can read more like it by clicking on the AITA link below.*

The book Don'ts for Weddings is available here.