So I came across this lengthy but interesting article about parenting in an open marriage. It really got me thinking about the idea of polyamory, which is “the practice, state or ability of having more than one sexual loving relationship at the same time, with the full knowledge and consent of all partners involved.” This is a bit different from polygamy “the practice of marrying more than one spouse.” I believe we are all familiar with polygamy and it is practiced by a lot of cultures including ours. Polyamory, is what people commonly refer to as an open marriage; it is also different from swinging. Swinging is a “ non-monogamous behavior, in which singles or partners in a committed relationship engage in sexual activities with others as a recreational or social activity.” Now we are all on the same page with definitions, I’ll get to my point.
My first reactions to this article about a perfectly happy couple practicing an open marriage and raising kids was; WTF, hell no, this is craziness, immoral and some less polite stuff along those lines. But the more I read, I began to wonder if the author had a point. I mean, just a few weeks ago there was an article on jaguda.com about having sex on the first date and one night stands. An overwhelming majority of you seemed to think this is acceptable and normal for the 21st century. Our sexual moral standards are obviously more relaxed than they have been at any other time (except maybe in the US during the 70’s). We accept very casual sex; large number of partners, homosexuality and the list goes on. We have also as a generation redefined marriage, so it seems only logical that open relationships and open “marriages” are a natural result.
We also have numerous discussions about the high incidence of infidelity in relationships and marriages. For those of us in the states the idea of men being on the down low (sleeping with men while married) is a common concept. So my thought is, if we are going to cheat on our spouses whom we vow to honor and remain faithful to, why bother with those words. We might as well just throw those our vows out and pledge to be honest with each other. And if our desire to have multiple sex partners, then we can bring heterosexual and or homosexual lovers into the home openly. My rational left brain thinks that there would be less heartbreak for everyone involved. Besides I’ve heard men (Nigerian and otherwise) argue multiple times that man is not a monogamous creature by nature. So…..
Most people will justify their disgust with open marriages by citing religious reasons. If you are actually a truly religious man or woman, if you aren’t simply not a church goer, if you are/will be faithful to your wife till death do you part, etc. Then this reason is valid, however, if you know that religion is only a shield you hide behind and you don’t abide with the tenets of your faith, it becomes an insufficient motive.
Now after all is said and done, I know I couldn’t be in an open marriage. Other than my religious believes I am also a jealous woman; I will cut someone in a fit of jealousy. What’s your take on it? Could you be in an open marriage? Why or why not? Do you think open marriages are
acceptable for anyone?