A jeweler called Jason of Beverly Hills has designed a wedding ring embossed with the word "married" on the inside, so that when you take it off, the word stays imprinted on your finger. This morning, Katie Couric was positively gleeful about it on the Today show. "I think it's a brilliant idea," she said. "Nothing's creepier than a guy who takes his wedding ring off and tries to hit on people; that's disgusting." (Well, she's right on the second point.) We had so many questions, all of which we sent to Jason of Beverly Hills. Like: If you think a ring is the only thing that'll keep your partner from cheating, isn't that a huge problem? Why would somebody who's planning on cheating anyway agree to wear this? Don't you think that just the idea of wearing it can erode trust between partners?
The company responded by saying: "Jason [Arasheben, the CEO] would like to think the design of the ring contributes to successful marriages. The ring is a symbol of a union between two people who love each other and should be viewed as that." We completely understand why someone would want to wear this ring out of love, or maybe to be a little cheeky or different. But if you're thinking of branding your partner — and that's the lingo the company is using; it says "Branded!" in the Instagram caption above — then your relationship may be lacking trust. Because if there is doubt in your mind that you feel could only be soothed by a metal object, it might be time to step back and examine your relationship. And, might we add, monogamy isn't for everybody. In the past, we've talked to several experts who've explained that jealous behavior (like, say, insisting your partner wear this ring) often betrays poor self-esteem. "Jealous behavior tends to be a sign of low self-esteem and poor feelings of self-worth, so you need to go back to where these feelings started and take a good look at your past relationships," said Amanda Rausch, LMFT. A rep for Jason of Beverly Hills said the idea for the ring came out of the designer's forgetfulness. "Jason forgot his ring at home and Lisa, his wife, drove to his office to give it to him. Lisa made a comment that she wished the ring would leave a mark on him if he was going to keep taking it off, and the idea stuck with Jason. Originally making the 'married' ring for himself, other clients liked the idea and the ring has been a hit amongst friends and clientele," she said. That's a reason we can get behind — a wedding or engagement ring can become annoying to remember to put on or take off. We've even covered engagement-ring tattoos in the past, and think they're a chic, and practical, way to express your love. But the "anti-cheating" and "branding" rhetoric — ahem, certain Today show anchors — is pretty problematic. So if you're thinking of wearing (or asking your partner to wear) something like this, make sure you're doing it for the right reasons.