I've never been divorced but I can imagine this could be a real issue for someone who is going through it. In my opinion, if the divorce was an amicable one and / or the ring was an heirloom in the ex's family I'd probably return it. It seems to be the fair thing to do. However, I probably wouldn't feel so generous if the divorce was a messy one, with him cheating or custody battles over kids.
I did keep mine. I am the type of person who treasure things that mean a lot to me. The ring, however,has now become a symbol of a broken trust and will remain just an ornament together with my other collections.
I have not been divorced but, when my sister divorced her ex husband, she kept the ring and gave it to her eldest daughter. I thought that it was a nice gesture and showed her daughter that there was obviously once a loving relationship that she was the outcome of. It also helped my niece to deal with the divorce so it was a good thing.
I kept my wedding band as it was a high quality gold from an overseas country with the intention to one day have it melted down and turned into something else as I have been remarried for quite a few years and it no longer causes me pain. It is now just a piece of jewellery to me.
Although I divorced under unhappy circumstances many years ago, I kept my wedding ring (as the ex kept his) so I can give it to my son at a later date to do with as he wishes. Although it no longer means the same thing to me, I believe that it will still have symbolic value for my son. Whether he chooses to keep it, re-set it or sell it on, the choice is his. by bakba
I am happily married and I haven't wore my wedding ring in years. I put weight on after I married and the ring got tight. I took it off and have never put it back. Hubby wears his around his neck on a chain, but I am not a jewellery person and I don't need a ring to show how I feel... it's in my eyes and in my actions, and that's more than enough.
Divorce isn't in my vocabulary, however, I guess I would eventually take my ring off if my wife passed away, because we only married "until death us do part" and I know both of us would like to see the other happy after our passing - including finding a new mate.