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Swingers, Swapers, Polygamy, Polyandry and Open Marriage

Be it on TV (e.g. Big Love, Swingtown), the internet, the newspapers, church, the park, at work, or Walmart, it seems everywhere we look these days we run into people who are experimenting with various sexual and relational extra marital activities within their marriages. People have been cheating and destroying their marriages by having affairs for as long as their have been marriages. In the last few years we've become increasingly aware of something else that has apparently been going on for at least a few decades as well. It seems that these are mutually agreed upon affairs in generally strongly committed and loving marriages. My wife has expressed openness to trying this. I have to admit to being a little curious about it myself...but not so much that I'd risk my marriage. We are curious what other people think. We are especially interested in knowing what people think of it who have actually tried or are currently doing this. What sort of experience (good or bad) have you had?

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Christian Wedlock.

QUESTION:
Can a woman have more than two husbands?

ANSWER:
No, a woman cannot have more than two living husbands. A man has no choice, as he must be in wedlock with one wife. But a woman has three choices. Firstly, no wedlock with a husband. Secondly, wedlock with one husband. Or thirdly, wedlock with two husbands. That’s it, there are no further choices for a woman, and there is no choice at all for a man.

1 Corinthians 7:2 King James 1611.
Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband.

Yr. 1783. 10th George Prince of Wales Own Hussars. (King George III).
Yr. 1898. 19th Alexandra Princess of Wales Own Hussars. (Queen Victoria).

Therefore two women can own a regiment of cavalry, and two men can own a regiment of cavalry.

1 Corinthians 6:16 King James 1611.
What! know ye not that he which is joined to a harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh.

Therefore in the New Testament a man and woman lying together are one flesh, as follows:

A husband and wife who lie together by carnal copulation shall be one flesh.

A man and courtesan/prostitute who lie together by carnal copulation shall be one flesh.

A man and common courtesan or common prostitute who lie together by carnal copulation shall be one flesh.

An adulterer and adultress who lie together by carnal copulation shall be one flesh.

An adulterer and fornicatress who lie together by carnal copulation shall be one flesh.

A fornicator and adultress who lie together by carnal copulation shall be one flesh.

A fornicator and fornicatress who lie together by carnal copulation shall be one flesh.

Clearly the New Testament lays down that a man must be in wedlock with his own wife, and a woman must be in wedlock with her own husband. Furthermore the New Testament specifically limits the number of wives that a man can have to only one, but sets no limit to the number of husbands a woman can have. But there must be some limit for a woman, or one woman could be in wedlock with thousands of men. Rationally, if one woman can satisfy the bodily lust of one man every day, and forty men can satisfy the bodily lust of one woman every day, then is one wife for every man and forty husbands for every woman what the New Testament requires? No, because the New Testament is a document of truth, not a document of reason.

Luke 1:28 King James 1611.
Luke 1:31 King James 1611.
Luke 1:28-35 King James 1611.
In the New Testament, the angel Gabriel came in unto Mary, a virgin woman, and Mary conceived and delivered her firstborn son, Jesus, the son being God the Son, the father being God the Father. And when Mary’s womb delivered her firstborn son Jesus unto the world, then Mary was like all women delivered of a firstborn son unto the world, as a woman’s firstborn son can never belong to the mother but must belong to the Lord God.

Luke 2:23 King James 1611.
Exodus 13:2&12 King James 1611.
And so like all women delivered of a firstborn son, Mary was no longer a virgin woman, but like all said women, Mary was a holy woman.

Matthew 13:53-56 King James 1611.
Mark 6:1-4 King James 1611.
And husband Joseph Jacob came in unto Mary and husband Joseph Heli came in unto Mary, and Mary conceived and delivered Jesus’ brothers, James, Joses, Simon, Judas, and also Jesus’ sisters.

Matthew 1:6&16 King James 1611.
Luke 3:23&31 King James 1611.
Joseph Jacob was the descendent of King David’s son Solomon, and Joseph Heli was the descendent of King David’s son Nathan.

Genesis 38:16-18 King James 1611.
“Came in unto her” means congress or carnal copulation. In the Old Testament, Judah came in unto Tamar, his daughter-in-law, and Tamar conceived and delivered twin sons. Tamar had lain in wait for Judah on the side of a far away road, and Judah had been unable to recognize Tamar because she was wearing a veil, and only common harlots wore veils. Upon first seeing this strange woman wearing a veil, Judah bargained a payment of his personal signet ring, his personal wrist bangles, and his personal walking staff, for coming in unto her. Tamar had been in wedlock with Judah’s first son, who God had killed for being wicked. Tamar had then been in wedlock with Judah’s second son, who God had then killed when he saw the second son deliberately spill his seed on the ground during carnal copulation with Tamar. Judah had then ordered his daughter-in-law Tamar not to marry again, because Judah pledged Tamar that she would marry his third son when he became old enough for wedlock. But when his third son became old enough to marry, Judah broke his pledge and forbade his third son to marry Tamar. When Tamar was seen in her third month to be heavy with child, Judah was told that Tamar was with child through harlotry. Judah then summoned Tamar to him in order to be burnt to death for harlotry, although it was against the law to put a woman to death for harlotry. Tamar came and produced the signet ring, the wrist bangles, and the walking staff, and said the man who gave me these is the man by whom I am with child. Then Judah confessed to all that he had broken his pledge and sinned by going back on his word that Tamar would have wedlock with his third son when his third son became of age, and then denying such wedlock to her. Six months later Tamar safely gave birth to the twin sons conceived with Judah.

Genesis 1:27-28 King James 1611.
Genesis 2:7&18-19 King James 1611.
Genesis 3:20 King James 1611.
The first man and first woman in this world were Adam and Eve. Adam means “man” in the hebrew tongue, and Eve means “life” in the hebrew tongue. Therefore a man is man, but a woman is life.

Romans 7:4-6 King James 1611.
Old Testament law dead and gives as an example that a woman can have more than one husband.

1 Timothy 3:2 King James 1611.
A bishop can have only one wife, and as he must be an example to other men, a man can have only one wife.

1 Timothy 3:12 King James 1611.
A deacon can have only one wife, and as he must be an example to other men, a man can have only one wife.

Titus 1:6 King James 1611.
An elder can have only one wife.

1 Timothy 5:4&9   King James 1611.   
Elders are not to provide for widows under three score years of age without children, who have only had one husband.

The Estate of Marriage. Martin Luther 1522.
Although Martin Luther confirmed that a woman could have two husbands, he nevertheless immediately restricted it to women who were in a marriage which had produced no children and who had then obtained permission from their first husband to take their second husband. Confusingly, Martin Luther did not make it clear as to how long a woman had to wait before taking her second husband.

To sum up, the New Testament upholds the example of deacons, elders, and bishops, for men to follow. That example is one wife. The New Testament also lays down that the Old Testament no longer applies to men or women, except for the 10 Commandments, and gives as an example of this that a woman is no longer bound to have only one husband. If men must follow the example of the male Christian leader, whether bishop, deacon, or elder, then surely women must follow the example of the female Christian leader. What leader is that? The primary one in the New Testament is Mary, the Mother of Jesus, God the Son.

Luke 1:15&35&41 King James 1611.
Mary had carnal copulation with three men. The Angel Gabriel, Joseph Jacob, and Joseph Heli. However, Mary was only in wedlock with two men, Joseph Jacob, and Joseph Heli. Furthermore, the Angel Gabriel was not a man of this world, and he seems not to have taken a fully visible male form when he had carnal copulation with Mary as ordered by God the Father, for it appears that at some stage God the Holy Ghost came upon or entered Mary. Either this was at the moment Mary conceived or immediately afterwards. After Mary conceived, she immediately went to visit her cousin Elisabeth, who was six months with child, a son, who also had been conceived when Elisabeth had been filled by God the Holy Ghost.

Accordingly it would be fully in accordance with the New Testament for a man to have one wife, and a woman to have two husbands. That the Angel Gabriel had carnal copulation with Mary is both interesting and theologically necessary, but it is not enough of an example for a woman to attempt to take a third husband in wedlock, whilst her first and second husbands still liveth.

Matthew 19:11-12 King James 1611.
The New Testament does not give man any choice; he must have wedlock with one woman. Although do bear in mind that Jesus, God the Son, was not in wedlock with any woman.

But the New Testament gives a woman three choices.

1st Choice:
Virgin woman without wedlock.

2nd Choice:
Virgin woman with one husband in wedlock without child.
Virgin woman with one husband in wedlock with female child or female children.
Holy woman with one husband in wedlock with firstborn male child.
Holy woman with one husband in wedlock with male child or children together with female child or children.

3rd Choice:
Holy woman with two husbands in wedlock with firstborn male child.
Holy woman with two husbands in wedlock with male child or children together with female child or children.

A number of denominations have a service for wedlock, but so far every one of them has inserted words that clearly say a woman may be in wedlock with only one man at a time. Even the State Lutheran Evangelical Church of Sweden states this, despite Martin Luther himself saying that a wife can be in wedlock with two living husbands.

But what do you expect. After all, Martin Luther stated in writing that under no circumstances was anyone to call himself a “Lutheran” and under no circumstances was any church to call itself a “Lutheran Church”. So what do all northern europeans called themselves? Lutherans! Ask them what church they belong to? The Lutheran Church!

A number of denominations do not have any service for wedlock, on the grounds that wedlock is not a church matter, as it is a state matter. But every such denomination has nevertheless inserted words in that denomination’s discussion of wedlock, that firmly says that a woman can only have one husband in wedlock at a time.

Nowhere do any of the denominations give any explanation for their defiance of the New Testament. Of course that just might be because there is neither any justifiable explanation or excusable explanation for such defiance.

Still, just looking at using only the principle of choice as a guide, all the above denominations are pointing in the right direction, even if they are not pointing down the correct path.

That is, a man has no choice, he must make efforts to be in wedlock with one wife at some stage of his life here in this world.

And a woman still has a choice, in that she may choose not to be in wedlock with a man in this world, or she may choose to be in wedlock with one husband at some stage of her life here in this world. This means that the principle of a woman having a choice remains intact.

The defiance of both the Lord God and the New Testament by the various denominations by the removal of a woman’s option to make efforts to be in wedlock with two husbands at the same time at some stage of her life in this world, still leaves intact the principle of choice for the woman and no choice for the man.

Constitution of The Spartans (Xenophon). 388 B.C.
League of The Iroquois (Lewis Henry Morgan). 1851 A.D.
Only two non-christian groups in the world have been known to practice New Testament wedlock. The Spartans and the Mohawk.

Only monandry and diandry, or New Testament style wedlock, was lawful among the Spartans, citizens of the greatest of the greek city-states, Sparta, and history’s final saviours of Western Civilization at Thermopylae (The Hot Gates) in 480 B.C.

And only monandry and diandry, or New Testament style wedlock, was lawful among the Mohawk, citizens of the greatest of the eastern woodland North American tribes, which forever blocked France’s attempt to seize New York so as to split England’s colonies in twain.

Much criticism of both the Spartans and the Mohawk, has been leveled by outsiders who complain of the extreme freedom of the females and the extreme militarism of the males. It must be noted that there is no record of any Spartan male, Spartan female, Mohawk male, or Mohawk female, complaining of female freedom or male militarism.

Whatever your point of view on Spartan life or Mohawk life, the New Testament lays down cast-iron guidelines for wedlock. The fact that the New Testament complies with Spartan law and Mohawk law is irrelevant.

Of absolutely no relevance to this discussion, the symbol of the United States of America is the bald headed eagle, which is a species that uses both monandry and diandry for conception, and where the one male or two males reside in the exactly the same nest as the one female. The one female and either the one male or two males, stay in the nest together and raise the chick together.

Mark 10:7 King James 1611.
Ephesians 5:31 King James 1611.
Both husbands must leave their families to go and become a member of the wife’s family, or the one husband must leave his family to go and become a member of the wife’s family.

THE NEW TESTAMENT FORBIDS MOHAMMEDRY.
THE NEW TESTAMENT FORBIDS POLYGAMY.
THE NEW TESTAMENT FORBIDS CLITORECTI.
THE NEW TESTAMENT FORBIDS MONKERY.
THE NEW TESTAMENT FORBIDS POPERY.
THE NEW TESTAMENT FORBIDS CASTRATI.

CAPITAL LAWES OF THE GOVERNMENT OF THE MOHAWK.

1st. If any person within this Government of The Mohawk shall by direct, exprest, impious, or presumptuous ways, deny the true God and his Attributes; he shall be put to death.

2nd. If any person within this Government of The Mohawk shall maliciously and on purpose deny that any Mohawk person may have arms for his defence suitable to his condition and as allowed by law; he shall be put to death.

3rd. If any person shall commit any willful murder, which is manslaughter, committed upon malice, hatred, or cruelty, not in a man’s necessary or just defence, nor by mere casualty against his will; he shall be put to death.

4th. If any person shall slay, or cause another to be slain by guile or by poisoning or any such wicked conspiracy; he shall be put to death.

5th. If any man or woman shall lye with any beast or brute creature by carnal copulation; they shall be put to death, and the beast shall be burned.

6th. If any man lyeth with a man or mankind as he lyeth with a woman; they shall be put to death, unless the one party were forced or under fourteen years of age, in which case he shall not be punished.

7th. If any man forcibly stealth or carrieth away any woman or womankind; he shall be put to death.

8th. If any person shall bear false witness maliciously and on purpose to take away any person’s life; he shall be put to death.

9th. If any man shall traitorously deny his Clanmother’s right and titles to her Eagle Feathers and Dominions, or shall raise arms to resist her Authority; he shall be put to death.

10th. If any man shall treacherously conspire or publiquely attempt, to invade or surprise any town or towns, fort or forts, within this Government of the Mohawk; he shall be put to death.

11th. If any child or children, above sixteen years of age, and of sufficient understanding, shall smite his or their Natural Mother or Lodgemother, unless thereunto provoked and foret for the self preservation from death or mayming, then at the complaint of the said Mother and Lodgemother, and not otherwise, they being sufficient witnesses thereof; that child or those children so offending shall be put to death.

12th. If any stubborn and rebellious son or sons, above sixteen years of age, and of sufficient understanding, shall not obey the voice of his or their Natural Mother or Lodgemother, and that when the said Mother or Lodgemother have chastened such son or sons will not hearken unto them, then at the complaint of the said Mother and Lodgemother, and not otherwise, they being sufficient witnesses thereof; that son or those sons so offending shall be put to death.

13th. If any unmarryed man above twentyeight years of age and under fortytwo years of age shall maliciously and on purpose refuse wedlock for over fourteen days with any marryed woman under sixtythree years of age, said marryed woman having borne a son, or unmarryed woman under sixtythree years of age; he shall be put to death.

14th. If any person shall maliciously and on purpose deny any marryed woman wedlock with two husbands, said marryed woman having borne a son, or any unmarryed woman wedlock with one husband; he shall be put to death.

15th. If any marryed man shall lye with a woman by carnal copulation, other than his one wife; he shall be put to death.

16th. If any marryed woman shall lye with a man by carnal copulation, other than her two husbands or one husband; she shall be put to death.

17th. If any unmarryed man shall lye with a woman by carnal copulation; he shall be whipt thirteen strokes, unless he hath his Natural Mother or Lodgemother authority, in which case he shall not be punished.

18th. If any unmarryed woman shall lye with a man by carnal copulation; she shall be whipt three strokes, unless she hath her Natural Mother or Lodgemother authority, in which case she shall not be punished.

19th. If any person shall geld any man or mankind to take away generative power or virility; he shall be put to death.

20th. If any person shall geld any woman or womankind; he shall be put to death.
I joined this site so I could respond to this pathetic, idiotic Bible rant.

What makes a couple "married"? Making a verbal agreement (vows). What keeps a couple married? Both people's honoring the agreement (keeping their word). That's it.

It has nothing to do with the "word of God" except in the context of being "Christian" marriage. Nor does it have anything to do with the "word of the State" (marriage license) except in the context of being a "legal" marriage. It is about two people giving and keeping their word.

Most people never consider the transformational nature and overwhelming importance of these words. When couples say these words, they don't "change" into a husband and wife.

"Change" implies being a different version of the same thing (you're not a married single guy). With the speaking of these words, you literally become something else altogether that previously didn't exist. At the instant of exchange, you are transformed and become a husband/wife/married couple. Think about it: when two people enter a church (or wherever they "get married") nobody in attendance if asked would say that these people are married. After they say some words to each other, everyone agrees they are. They simply transform into an entirely new thing that previously didn't exist. Keeping their word simply means being who they say they are and acting accordingly.

I understand repeating vows instead of memorizing them because they are so important. I sometimes wonder if most people repeat vows because it's the first time they've heard them, much less considered them before. It seems as if they simply say the words because it's "something you have to do" in order to "get married." Once they get that little formality out of the way they continue on to be "married" as defined by whatever conceptions they have of what marriage is based on who knows what and, judging from the rates of divorce and affairs, very little agreement between them.

If people truly understood the importance of these words, they would likely pay more attention to what they were actually promising to be/do.

Then again, maybe they wouldn't. Especially the religious ones. As with nearly all areas that religion bastardizes, thinking isn't required:

Dear Christian Couple,

There's no need to discuss, understand, or even fully agree on the meaning of each word contained in the most important contractual agreement you'll ever enter. Just say these nifty pre-fab words that some long dead person wrote and some other person/group of people, speaking/deciding for God of course, decreed as sacred (nearly all 'religious' vows have their origins in some ancient, 'sacred' text). Just keep Jesus, (as defined by this particular flavor of religion) at the center of your marriage and it will all work out.

Your heavenly Father (or the humble servant working on his behalf),

God (or someone highly schooled in ancient superstitious nonsense)

And now for more amazing advice for people who can't/don't/won't think:

Something wrong with your marriage? Don't look to your vows, accept responsibility for your compromising your word, ask forgiveness of your partner, and recommit to doing what you said you would. You're not nearly strong enough for that, pathetic sinner. Don't take responsibility for your life or your marriage, place God where he belongs--first, and pray for him to "intervene" and "restore" your marriage. God can make it work. He can do anything if you "trust and obey" His commandments.

How should you communicate in a "Christian" marriage? Pray together of course. Don't speak directly to each other about your concerns. Get on your knees and silently or whisperingly say veiled passive aggressive comments to the space ghost. Don't admit vulnerability and fears to the one person who (likely, depending on your vows) promised to love you forever; ask the space ghost to give you strength and to take away your problems instead.

Fundamentally Flawed:

In a "Christian" marriage you're "married by" a priest/pastor/etc. Sorry, I missed that by a little bit--the clergymember can only "marry" you "by" the "power vested in him by God" to "declare/pronounce" you married (man and wife).

And therein lies the problem. From the very first instant of your marriage, the very thing that makes you married lies somewhere outside of your control. If someone else can actually speak for God to make you something, why can't he just go ahead and declare you hunky-dory ever after while he's swinging that badass God-stick around on your wedding day?

And these sad, small souls enter into marriage hoping (and praying) that some imaginary being will keep them together. They get God-awful (that expression is not an oxymoron) advice about how to keep it together. They enter into an agreement created by another human being in a time shortly after most of them believe dinosaurs roamed the earth. A contract whose language is only possible to honor through repression and self-denial (conveniently called "virtues" by the promoters of this ridiculous contract) or lies and deceit (conveniently called sins by the same promoters). I declare by the power vested in me by a brain capable of rational thought that only a "Christian brain" could possibly analyze this agreement and conclude that the results which inevitably follow somehow represent love or intimacy.

Here's my advice from personal experience on "open marriages", etc.--

It will rip your marriage to shreds if:

1. You or your partner believes that your marital agreement states or implies that participating in sexual acts with people other than the two of you is a violation of that agreement.

2. A new agreement isn't reached mutually and freely if #1 is true.

3. The terms of your agreement are defined by anyone/anything other than the two of you. It doesn't matter if those people/things are societal norms or someone on a message board who actually believes that CAPITALIZING WORDS WRITTEN 2000 YEARS AGO BY A MISOGYNISTIC MAN THAT CLAIM TO FORBID SOMETHING equals a definitive inarguable truth.

4. You (and your partner) accept personal responsibility for and honor your personal marital agreement only as well as people who look to help from imaginary beings accept responsibility for and honor their marital agreements.

Here's why that destruction is inevitable should you not understand what truly makes and keeps a couple married (giving and keeping their word):

Sex is a powerful thing. So powerful that people who believe themselves to be weak and flawed (incapable of keeping a personal commitment without "help from above") decided to create a story about their imaginary friend's warning label: "Warning--for sole usage by one man and one woman within the 'confines' (what a ridiculous, hilarious, and appropriate word) of marriage." And considering the advice these people are given for how to communicate and deal with problems, it's probably better that they obey their self created warning label.

So what makes sex such a scary, powerful thing?

Think about it:

What are you really afraid of when you think of your wife sleeping with another man?

It's not STD's--that's like being afraid of the bogeyman. And even if she did get one, didn't you have something in your vows about "in sickness and in health" or something like that?

That she'd really, really like it? Nope. That's not it. But while we're on this one, consider how sad and selfish it is that you'd only want your wife, whom you (likely) promised to love to only be as satisfied physically as you could make her and only when you're available and willing.

That he may be better than you? Nope. But getting closer.

That she'd lie to you and sneak off to sleep with her strapping young beau? Even closer.

That she'd leave you for another lover? This is it, but it's right for the wrong reasons. However it does illustrate one very pertinent fact:

For people lacking the personal integrity needed to be in a successful open marriage/swinger relationship, sex IS the most intimate (private, personal) thing a couple shares. And if sex is the most intimate thing shared between the two of you, it is perfectly logical to assume that she'd leave you for someone who was "better" than you because that would equal "more intimate" with.

So what does personal integrity have to do with it?

1. It's what you need to keep your vows. If a hot romp in the sack could end your marriage, then you don't trust your wife. She promised she'd love you. Do you trust her when she tells you something or do you trust her only to the point of multiple orgasms? Expecting her to not sleep with anyone else is okay if that's what you agreed to. However, it's an expectation of restriction and confinement designed to prevent loss. It's a negative expectation. The expectation and belief that she means what she says and will do it (Love you--no matter how great the sex is physically w someone else) is a positive expectation based on confidence that only comes from facing deeply held insecurities. It is a deeper, more meaningful level of trust. This trust is so pure and real that it is more intimate than any sex ever could be. Go back up and read #4. If you believe it's possible for anything to cause her to break her word, you're not ready to be in an open relationship. You are playing "not to lose." You are playing to survive. You are not playing to win and maximize enjoyment and life experience. That's your choice. Playing to win is harder. It involves overcoming more fears. It is not for everybody, and if you step up to the plate before you're ready--you will get blown away.

2. Personal integrity is also required to tell the truth that scares you. You know (unless you are in a sexually anorexic minority) that you've considered being with people other than your spouse. Instead of openly and honestly admitting these feelings we hide behind lies created in order to spare the feelings of our partners. Why wouldn't you tell your wife, "I'd like to be with other people?" Simple. It scares the hell out of you. Because she just might say, "Me, too." And how would a normal "play to not lose", person interpret this expression of desire?: Most likely as, "I don't want to be with you", "You don't satisfy me",or "You're not good enough for me", or "You don't love me (especially if sex is the deepest expression of intimacy/love)."

And if "I'd like to sleep with other people" is interpreted in any of those ways, all it really means is this:

"I don't trust you to keep your vows."

Simply by mentioning an biologically unavoidable fact (human physical attraction) in the context of a normal marriage, you run the risk of "ruining" your marriage because the trust has indeed been broken--she trusted and expected you to do the impossible--never want to be let alone consider being with someone sexually. So instead of running this risk and facing this possibility, we lie: "You're the only person I could ever imagine myself with." And we lie (erode our integrity) more and more until the TRUE intimacy is destroyed.

This intimacy makes sex more than sex--the kind you have before you start building up little resentment after little resentment due to unmet expectations left unaddressed. This intimacy is only created by being completely naked and vulnerable. Not just physically, but emotionally and mentally. The kind that says, "It really scares the hell out of me to think of you being with someone else." The kind that comes from taking total responsibility for your emotions and emotional reactions instead of blaming your wife for "making you feel" a certain way. The kind of private and personal knowledge that causes you to ask yourself: Why am I so scared? What am I afraid of? Why do I not trust my wife to keep her word and to love me if she slept with someone else? Why do not I trust myself to keep my commitment to love her if she did? What do I not think I'm good enough? What thing about myself is so "private and personal (intimate)" that I'm afraid to share it with her out of fear of rejection and loss? Very few people have what it takes to be that honest and open with anyone. For an open marriage to work, you must face your most deeply held insecurities head on and to share them with the one person-the only person-you can trust fully. To be completely OPEN with that person.

This is why it's called an open marriage. It's because of your most open, honest, vulnerable, intimate sharing of the most personal, private thoughts and desires without fear of rejection, loss, retribution, anger or resentment. And if one of those emotions does arise within your partner--her knowing that she can share that with you just as openly. It isn't called an "open" marriage as in "open leg" or "open vows." In fact, the only way it can work is if your vows are unassailable.

People say, "why risk it?" I really believe that the overwhelming majority of people shouldn't. I also believe when most people do they do so when the intimacy has died in their relationship due to desires, hostility, and buried resentments they chose not to "openly" express because, at the end of the day, they didn't really truly trust their partner. Because they believe that sex=intimacy they attempt a lifestyle they mistakenly believe is about sex in order to "feel" an intimate connection. This isn't possible. It will end the marriage. The openness it takes for an agreement like this to work is exactly what's missing in that relationship.

From a personal standpoint, here's why my wife (and even if you've deluded yourself into believing that you actually would never want to be with another woman, if you saw how gorgeous, brilliant, and full of life and love my wife is--you would be faced with the reality that your belief is what it is--a delusion) and I decided to "risk" losing our marriage: we knew that by working through the insecurities and emotions that come with making this choice that we'd be able to share ourselves with each other in a way that absolutely nobody or nothing would ever be able to separate us. We'd be living a life filled with courage and commitment. One filled with a trust of each other to what we said we would--the kind of trust built on baring emotions; not the quasi-trust built on lies told for the sake of sparing emotions.

So is it worth the risk? That's for you to decide. Here's what I know as a near certain fact:

If your husband called you tomorrow morning while he was away on a business trip and told you that he'd been with another woman the night before, your world would likely collapse. Tears, anger, hate, inability to function, and divorce would likely ensue. And what is the root of all of those destructive emotions? 2 places: 1. Feeling that your trust was betrayed. What trust? The trust that he wouldn't be with anyone beside you. 2. The repression of all the feelings and thoughts that you repressed because you didn't want to "risk" losing him. The same repressed feelings and desires that killed the true intimacy in your desires and led him to seek it in the place he erroneously believes it exists--sex. And you experience these overwhelming emotions not because he lied--you knew he was lying--you were, too. The real reason you are so destroyed is because you were afraid and you didn't acknowledge it. And now that your worst fear is thrust upon you in an instant, all of the years of little lies (I never think about being with anyone but you) that spare emotions have been vaporized leaving in its place all of the bare emotions that never saw the light of day because you were afraid to risk it.

This morning when I told my wife that I'd been with another woman last night, she said something to the effect of: "That's great. How was it? I'm glad you had a good time. Go be amazing at work today and call me if you get a break. I love you and can't wait to see you this weekend, but I've gotta go walk the dog."

We have vows that we take very seriously. But the only 3 "amendments" to our agreement we added were:

1. We don't do anything physically with other people if there is any unresolved resentment of any sort between us (which would make sex the deepest form if intimacy we were currently sharing due to the unaddressed emotion, and thus a potential issue to clear up that would take more time than it was worth--not a threat to our marriage, but a mess we don't feel like dealing with).

2. We're not with other people if we can be with each other unless we're both with other people while we're together. (Nobody satisfies us more than each other).

3. If anyone we were with said anything in an attempt to compare/contrast drive a wedge between us (how's that compared to your wife? I bet your husband can't do that. Etc.), that person would be immediately dismissed forever from our toy list.

And you know what the crazy part is? Knowing that we can be with other people whenever we want and that we never have to lie just makes us want each other more and want to be with other people less. This doesn't "add spice" to our marriage-it doesn't need that. It simply encourages depth, truth, vulnerability, openness, and trust.

In summary: your marriage is your marriage. If you view the sex as a way to "improve" your marriage, then you're missing the point entirely. The only way to improve your marriage is to faithfully and fully honor your vows. If the vows are yours, and you embrace them fully, you can create whatever you want in your marriage. Including the option to be with other people. But before you even think of attempting something like this, you'd better be damned sure that you're ready to face some stuff so scary that most people would prefer to settle for lies and repression than face it. The only way to overcome it is to keep your word. How strong is yours?
This guy obviously missed the entire Jesus boat...
When you pray together it is out loud in front of your spouse..no secrets... bearing your heart to God and your spouse at the same time...DUH!

This sexual swinging is a sin the reason it is is that it gives evil a foothold and that is it....you are playing with fire.

The Bible is real and I have tried everything without Jesus and failed...I finally gave it up and let Him rule my life and I am happily married something I have never had. These rules are here for a reason to protect us.
WHY is it.. that nearly everyone has to quote the BIBLE!! It seems that you can not speak FOR YOURSELVES? You must relay on a BOOK? Again I will say, one does not need this.. to have a happy marriage... oh gosh... if you ask, .... I will ask my grandfather, who knew his father... who were married ... the difference.. they were all Native American's.... sorry Rachael.. but the BIBLE or this... figure called Jesus.. was NOT in their picture.... So if you can fully explain to me why, please do.
If you are asking how strong our marriage is.... 30 years - young... and we have no need to count. Ours is based on a friendship that begin 43 years ago as children, today, we continue that friendship, that love... our vows... well, we KNOW ours! we BOTH WROTE THEM.... we BOTH PLANNED our wedding. Today, we BOTH have planned this new path, Open Marriage, openly... and with the challenges.
To Brett Williams,

Wow, in a nutshell you have exposed what is wrong with the current system of relying on "experts" to help your marriage. You couldn't be more wrong in your opinions. We have enjoyed the lifestyle for quite some time and know many others who have as well. Long Term, stable, mature relationships do not (and never will) allow something as trivial as sex to hinder their relationship. You "experts" seem to think that sex is the ultimate in being close with your partner. That is untrue period. There are many other moments you share with your partner that will enhance the connection to your partner. Sex is just one. Saying that it doesn't work simply let's people know how little you actually know on the subject and does nothing to reinforce the fact that you are an "expert" on marriages. It is just an agenda you are working from, not a scientific fact. Because you people go to school for a certain amount of years and have fancy degrees does not mean you have the answers. You are just like the rest of us, except with a nice piece of paper on your wall. The lifestyle is not for everyone and if people choose not to do it, that's great and I am not saying they have to. But for those of us who enjoy it comments like yours are false, small minded and should show people that they need to stay away from self righteous, egotistical "experts" like yourself.
Well said Chris. In recent times, my wife and I have found that we have not had "sex" as much as perhaps a year ago, does this mean things have changed between us, or our marriage is weaker, or on the rocks? NOPE. We continue to be strong.. to, as you said, have those other moments. We now have, after 30 years of marriage set this path of Open Marriage.
I see that this posting is over a year old, but regardless, I would like to offer this - in the realm of Open Marriage (OM) (I can not speak for the other topics), the author states ". . .I have to admit to being a little curious about it myself...but not so much that I'd risk my marriage." If the author would have considered research .... about OM (and even POLY I think) he would have found that becoming involved is about being open among all that are involved. There is understanding.. and more there is an agreed set of rules; with such, the "risk to ones' marriage" is not a factor. OM is NOT CHEATING... there is nothing done in SECRET.

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