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Monday, May 5, 2014

The Truth About Plural Families

Just about any time I voice my opinion about Polygamy I end up with nasty comments and/or messages from complete strangers who clearly don't know me - or what they're talking about.  Some of my favorite ones insinuate that I support everything from forced child marriage to spousal abuse to rape and sometimes even murder... Aren't I a wonderful person to think all those things are just peachy-keen?  Yeah-- NO!  Clearly people who say these things don't know much about Plural Marriage, nor do they fully understand why I would support it.  Understanding that few people truly understand what Plural Marriage is all about, and that for the most part, the only depictions most people have ever seen are the news stories about groups such as the FLDS Cult, I thought it would be a good subject to cover here. Hopefully I can make a few points clear, and possibly open a few eyes on this issue. 

The first thing I think is important to point on here is that I support Plural Families of ALL types.  While that includes Polygamous Families, it's certainly not limited to any single type of family.  Instead, the term "Plural Marriage" refers to ANY family where there is more than one partner involved in a relationship.  These include:
  • One Husband & Multiple Wives
  • One Wife & Multiple Husbands
  • One Husband, One Wife & One or More Girlfriend or Boyfriend
  • Multiple Husbands and Multiple Wives
  • Multiple Same Sex Individuals (Husbands or Wives)
I would bet there is someone out there who would look at this list and say I missed something, but you get the point - I hope.   

Secondly, when the issue of Polygamy comes up, the first thing people tend to think of is the FLDS cult, or other similar groups.  But it's important to understand that while that may be the portrayal the media prefers to in-bed in our memories, that is NOT what Plural Families are about.  There are Plural Families all over the US, and in every other country on Earth.  For the most part - with the exception of cultist groups and countries where arraigned or child marriage is still the norm (which is the minority BTW) - Plural Marriages are not much different from every other marriage out there. 

Plural Marriages, like Monogamous Marriages, involve ADULTS who have chosen to be in a relationship with more than one partner.  These are not situations where people are forced to be together or where 80 year old men are being married to children.  These are not situations where abuse or rape is going on. And these are not situations where the women are forced to dress, speak and go only where and how their husbands tell them...  Although to be fair, there are situations like this even within Monogamous Marriages, so to say it never happens would be dishonest of me.  Fact is though, abuse (in it's many forms) happens in every form of marriage, but it is less common in Plural Marriages (again, excluding cults) because the abusive spouse loses the upper hand by having more than one partner in the home.  Abuse is usually about control, which is difficult to hold on to when you are dealing with more than one individual.  

 Cults, such as the FLDS, are NOT what Plural Marriage is about!  They are evil and abusive to everyone involved and are not in any way, shape or form, what I am speaking about here. In NO way do I support such groups and would welcome anyone fleeing from such a group in to my home for safety sake. These groups use "marriage" (and I use the term lightly here) as a way to control and hide abuse.  In reality however, these groups do not represent a true picture of Plural Marriage any more than Ike & Tina Turner represent a true picture of Monogamous Marriage. So to see them as such completely disrespects the thousands of healthy, happy Plural Marriages which exist in the world today. 

What it all boils down to in my book is this - So long as everyone involved in a relationship is a consenting adult, it's none of my business who is there or how they choose to run their relationship.  Personally, the only reason I am NOT in a Plural Relationship is because my husband is not interested.  He says the last thing he needs is a second wife telling him to take out the trash.  But I have been involved in "open" relationships in the past, and the reason they did not work was not because they were "open" but because I wasn't happy with the other people involved.  If my husband and I were ever to meet someone we both felt drawn to enough to bring in to our relationship, I would love to have a wife (his second) - but I don't think it's something that should be pushed for. I believe if you're meant to be together, you'll find each other. 

There are always a lot of questions about Plural Marriage going around out there - Do they ALL sleep together? Is their jealousy? How do they deal with emotions or disagreements? Who disciplines the kids? and so on and so on... And here's the answer - Each family deals differently!  Are there families where everyone shares a bed? Yep. Are there families where there are more than one bedroom or even house? Yep.  Are there partners who have a lot of jealousy? Yep. And are there those who don't? Yep...  But the point is, if you really love one another, you make it work. And if you don't, it doesn't.  Plural Marriage isn't any more perfect - or any more flawed - than Monogamous Marriage.  If there is love, and a willingness to work, then in the long run, everyone will turn out happy... If there isn't, then it won't work out. Each family is different.  Each spouse or partner is different.  And there is every variable out there. So unless you're asking each and every person these questions and specifying that they answer ONLY for themselves, you can't really get the answers.

So yes, I support Polygamy and ALL forms of Plural Marriage - so long as they involve free willed adults.  And personally, I think everyone should.  What happens in someone else's bedroom - or house for that matter - isn't your business, so let them be who they are and you be who you are - even if those things are different from one another...  That's what being free to live our own lives is about!

I think more than anything, I am bothered by the idea that it is more acceptable for someone to cheat on their spouse in secret than it is for them to simply have more than one spouse in the same home... 

1 comment:

  1. Those individuals who condemn plural marriage honestly have no idea of the inner working of this type of re,relationship. I too support plural marriage in any form among consenting adults...

    Great information!!!

    ReplyDelete

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