The old expression goes, “A happy wife, a happy life”. While this is true, anybody who knows me will concur that an old limerick is hardly convincing enough to force me to succumb to a patronizing concept such as that! Marriage to me is a journey of recognizing both individuals’ unique desires and needs and creating your own “normal” as there is no such thing as a normal marriage.

That said, at Clarity Project, we are shaking up the old adage. The act of giving and receiving a ring is meaningful to both partners in a couple and the thought that goes into it outweighs most other purchasing decisions in your life. The giver of the ring will forever think about the process he or she took to choose the stone, the design, the story, and the delivery. Thus, while the original saying may hold truth for many, we say:

A ring without strife begins a happy life!

Within the diamond and jewelry supply chains there are many places for varying degrees of negativity – none of which you want to wear on your person. The mere fact that many of these jewels and settings represent love is, sometimes, entirely counterintuitive, other than the final stage of spending a lot of money to make your partner smile.

To start, whether you are digging for gold, diamonds, tungsten (in lights), scandium (in phones), or anything else that requires deep drilling and mining is extraordinarily harmful to our earth.

Diamonds, gold, and platinum, which we are speaking of more specifically here, also require millions of gallons of water. This water often becomes polluted for a number of reasons and negatively affects the community surrounding the mines. As potable water becomes an increasingly scarce resource, its use for the procurement of such things as diamonds must be inspected with greater scrutiny.

One then begins to consider the social implications of resource-cursed communities who experience severely limiting job options in the areas where gold and diamonds are mined. By no means do all mines globally utilize slavery practices, especially those engaging in Kimberlite Mining, but many alluvial mines do resemble forced-labor conditions as pay can be tied to the finding of the actual stones, which is far from guaranteed.

Further, given the many (nine to twelve on average) middlemen from the time the stone is in the ground to the time it rests on your partner’s hand, diamonds are traded in such a way that tracking their journey is nearly impossible. Thus, it is not rare when a kimberlite mined diamond and an alluvial one will end up in the same pile, and the consumer is none-the-wiser (nor is the jeweler) as to the potential treachery endured by all who touched that stone along the way.

Having inspected all steps of the supply chain and acted as a consumer in this process as well, I can passionately share that knowing exactly where my diamonds came from and the path they took to my wife’s hand, gives me solace every time my eye is caught by the gleam and sparkle radiating from her stones.

Thankfully, today, you no longer need to travel to Sierra Leone for months, inspecting mines and meeting with mining teams, to ensure your diamonds’ integrity.

My passion for this is derived from the notion that this purchase does not represent a single passing thought, of which I will never be reminded again. Every day I hold my wife’s hands and every day I remember what it took for her to enjoy the luxuries represented on her ring finger. To cringe out of worry, or simply uncertainty, for a potentially devastating passage from diamond or gold mine to your partner’s finger at every glance for the remainder of your days is an unnecessary tax on your mind and energy!

A ring with no strife begins a happy life (with an exuberant wife)!