Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Marriage Styles

Oscar Wilde is one of my favorite authors, so here goes the first of what I'm sure will be many quotes of his: People who love only once in their lives are. . . shallow people. What they call their loyalty, and their fidelity, I call either the lethargy of custom or their lack of imagination. Oscar Wilde

I finished the book, Lost Boy, yesterday, about the author's experience growing up in a polygamous family on a compound in Utah. Unfortunately, he suffered severe abuse by the leader of the fundamentalist religion, as did other members of his family. Horrible.

However, it makes me wonder if polygamy can ever work. This question is also spawned by the recent discussions of allowing same-sex couples to legally marry, which some say will lead to the legalization of polygamous marriages in the U.S.

Regarding polygamy, the biggest problem with it seems to be the issue of underage girls being involved and whether or not choosing a polygamous lifestyle is really a choice. If those factors were not an issue, if the persons marrying were consenting with their full capacities and not having more children than can be provided for financially, emotionally and physically, I'd be fine with it.

However, our idea of plural marriage usually exists of one man with multiple wives. Plural marriage could be one woman with multiple husbands or same-sex couples (multiple men/women married to one another).

If I am open to marriages that differ from my own in the circumstance of same-sex marriage, shouldn't I be open to the possibility that a polygamous marriage could work as well?

*Again, I do not condone any marriage of any person who is forced or coerced into the relationship and not fully aware of the choice they are making - although, really, who knows EXACTLY what they are doing when they take the plunge?

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