Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Monogamy is selfish? I'm not convinced...

Kenya Stevens of JujuMama LLC left an interesting post on her Facebook wall today:

The nature of monogamy is selfishness. Most people would gladly have another lover, but what kills the dream is they would have to accept the same scenario. They deny themselves to further deny the one person they profess to love most. That to me is the real drive behind infidelity, the selfishness, and wanting to keep... your lover in darkness while you explore the light. (via Shannon Roberts)

Now I love Kenya's unconventional approach to strengthening relationships and her book is in my Amazon shopping cart for quick purchase this Friday. But her recent statement ate at my thoughts until I replied on her page and moseyed here for more commentary.

My original message to Kenya:

I don't agree that monogamy is selfish in itself. Pretending to be monogamous while cheating on a partner that you told something different is selfish. When both agree on the structure of their relationship -- that's harmony.

My His Side values monogamy as much as I do. As such, we have harmony in that area. Isn't it better to say that either ... See Moremodel works... so long as it is a shared value & desire?

Footnote: Monogamy does have its virtues... like the possible resulting children, the possible shared disease, etc. since there's no 100% method of preventing both. Discounting one structure to promote the other denies the value to those who chose it.

I couldn't resist spilling this conversation into this blog, because monogamy is central to my desire in a relationship. Kenya chronicled her journey into sharing her husband's goodies on her old blog, and it was clear it took a long time for the choice to sit well in her soul. That alone tells me that she clearly had a different preference for her marriage - which also features young children. As far as I was concerned, it took a pretty selfish motive on her husband's part to ask her to endure the ordeal.

What say you, or dear readers? Hit us in the comments.

Footnote: This blog will feature a book review of Kenya's book "Change Your Man: How to Become the Woman He Wants." I agree with Kenya's premise that men and women are different - and attempting to change your man via confrontation won't lead to harmony. I ordered her husband's companion book for His Side.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Bitter Pills to Swallow

Several weeks ago, my parents received bad news. "Although you are legally married, you've been living apart for many many years. He must be dropped from your retirement insurance."

In a funny twist, my parents are together almost every day. She cooks for him. He helps her with the house. They introduce themselves as husband and wife. But they can't stand living together. Mom is too controlling and dramatic, which doesn't mix well with the healthy doses of testosterone pulsing through dad's veins. Even in their 60's and 70's, some of their encounters mirror the hilarity of tweens trying to navigate puppy love.


Since mom couldn't produce a single utility bill or bank account statement in dad's name at her address, he is left to his own sparse insurance. They estimate his medical bills could increase by $1000 out of pocket per month. Nobody on retirement funds can afford that nonsense.

As my mother shared this crisis with me (and lamented about my father's annual visit to his girlfriend's hometown - a total other story), she said the bitter words I hear from far too many older women. "STAY. SINGLE." She meant it. "Share your life and your resources with no-one. You'll have to help them one day."

I have thrown my hands to the sky and raised my face to the wind many times with the same objection. "What part of that advice offers me the option and information I need to experience the beauty of a loving relationship?" Doesn't choosing a partner come with the absolute promise that one day I'll have to hold them up during a time of need? Doesn't the anticipation of their love and support during my darkest hours balance the perceived hardship? If that isn't love, then WHAT. IS????

Wounded people wound others. That concept is one block in the foundation of this blog. The wounded spread their bitterness like a disease... cleverly concealed under the shroud of "loving relationship advice."

Keep this in your back pocket: If the advice you get doesn't explain how love can win, then the puppet strings of bitterness and fear are showing all over the messenger. Smile. Keep it moving. Brush the bitterness off your clothes and find a trail that leads to love. It is the only truly positive power this planet has ever known.

Photo yanked from Legal Juice.