I recently got engaged to my boyfriend. He is from a northern European country where engagement rings are usually simple gold bands, worn by both the man and the woman. The big diamonds that American women expect are very rare and considered rather vulgar by most. My engagement ring is a cultural compromise: A gold band set with a very small (1/6 of a carat) diamond. I love my ring, but back home in the U.S., many people seem personally offended by it. My mother is urging me to have my ring ‘upgraded’ because a respectable American middle-class woman needs a bigger diamond. Other people have made comments along the lines of ‘That looks like a promise ring that a high schooler would give to his girlfriend.’ To many American women, the size of the diamond engagement ring seems to be a symbol of their success and worth as women, and the message that I have failed at this goal comes across loud and clear. It stings a bit when they wave their giant rings in my face while making their little comments. What can I do to get them to stop?