Life Advice



Ask Amy: Not-yet-divorced dad wants to put a ring on it

Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

My girlfriend knows that I want to marry her and knows that I have the ring, but the engagement will be overshadowed by the fact that I'm still legally married.

My girlfriend hates the idea of being the "other woman" on paper; even though she's not.

I want to be respectful to my future wife and her daughter, but I also want her to know how special she is to me.

Do I wait for another few months, or do I give her the ring now?

– Stuck in Transition

Dear Struck: You and your partner should continue to make your plans together, but you should wait to give her the ring and become “officially” engaged.


One reason for this is that giving her the ring might actually result in delaying your divorce.

If your wife won’t come to the table, and if she finds out that you are eagerly moving forward with plans to marry, the knowledge of that might inspire her to delay further.

Another reason to wait before giving her the ring is to demonstrate to all of your children that even though life is complicated (they already know that), there is an order to things, and you are behaving accordingly.

Dear Amy: While my husband and I were planning our wedding, my (now) in-laws were overly interested in our wedding colors, asking for swatches and updates and accent colors.


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