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Closed to open marriages?

One of my favorite recording artists, Jill Scott, caused a little buzz on Twitter yesterday. She happened to ask the question, “What do you think about open relationships?”, which garnered loads of responses.

She went on to pose this scenario “The love of your life cheats and is honest about it. Your life with him/her is everything but monogamous. Do you stay?”

I actually had to think about it for a long time! Do I walk away or do I find a way to handle it? The older I get, the more I realize what is most important.

If I had to make a choice, I would want/prefer my man to tell me before he explores his attraction to other women. Now does this mean I would jump for joy if my husband/partner sought out other people while we are supposed to be exclusive? Absolutely not! I can barely share a remote control!

I just think when two people commit to a life together, I can appreciate the deep honesty it takes to explore an open relationship.

For a long time, I believed that I wasn’t built to commit to one person. Although I have never cheated in a relationship, I simply questioned if I was capable of being with one man for the rest of my life. Could he be enough? Could I be enough? Could we convince each other that “we” were enough?

For the record, I don’t believe that open marriage is just about women kowtowing to male desires. It’s not always about having sanctioned trips to the sexual buffet of women.

To be perfectly honest, I think exploring an open relationship is like this really pragmatic approach to commitment. It’s for those who believe that it is impossible for one person to fulfill all your needs.

If the most painful part of cheating is the deception and lies, will being honest about your attraction to other people make a difference?

Could you be in an open relationship? Could you define an open marriage on your own terms?

Would you tell people that you had that kind of relationship?

What are your apprehensions about the idea?

Do you think more single people would marry if the open marriage option was on the table? Not talking about swinging lifestyle, per se. I am referring to a couple both agreeing to let each other know when they meet someone they feel a strong attraction to.

By Wise Diva, Misadventures in Atlanta Dating Blog

477 comments Add your comment

Brown Eyed Girl!

August 4th, 2011
12:01 pm

…and before anyone brings it up, if your spouse is beating the crap out of you or abusing you in any way, do leave!! Again, I digress…

Purple Reign

August 4th, 2011
12:02 pm

oneofeach4me, did you just judge someone in your 11:59? LOL

Black yeah you and I did not cheat we just had sex and spankings. :)

Leggs

August 4th, 2011
12:06 pm

A piece of Biblical advice for my friends, and me, that are single: Ruth patiently waited for her mate, Boaz. While waiting on your Boaz, don’t settle for ANY of his relatives: Brokeaz, Poaz, Lyinaz, Cheatinaz, Dumbaz, Cheapaz, Lockedupaz, Goodfornothinaz, Lazyaz, or Marriedaz, and especially his third cousin, Beatinyoaz. Please, wait on your Boaz and make sure he respects Yoaz.

Just thought I throw that in!

Simple Man......

August 4th, 2011
12:07 pm

Sassy / Celisea, My point is that there is no cast in stone guide for what arealtionship is supposed to be. If it were then Women would still be sold off to the dude that could give the most widgets to the dads, because those are the types of “marriages” that have been around the longest…The marriages that most folks today engage in are relatively new in the sense that a man and a woman have equal say in who they date, commit to and marry. What that says to me is that the concepts of marriage are continually evolving. Whats wrong with viewing them as such???

oneofeach4me

August 4th, 2011
12:07 pm

@Purple ~ Nope. Not at all. Just responding to a question and speaking in general terms.

Purple Reign

August 4th, 2011
12:08 pm

Simple Man, there is a written standard if you look for it.

SexyCool

August 4th, 2011
12:10 pm

As soon as I hit submit comment, I knew that the question would be taken as SEXYCOOL’s justification for judging others. OneOf…I suggest you go back and read everything that I have posted today. And anything that I have posted previously. I only speak on what I do and what I believe. I cannot and do not judge anyone for what they do. I don’t have a heaven or a hell to put anyone in. However, it also does not preclude me from having an opinion.

I could give a fck less what other folks do as long as it does not affect me and mine directly. Because if it does, you got problems.

Lovely Brown- Beautiful but selfish as hell!

August 4th, 2011
12:11 pm

However we have many people on this blog playing the “Holier than thou” card and it gets old

I don’t think this is the case around here,but we all have our view. I just happen to have a cheat on me, let me find out and your azz and assets is/are mine policy….works for me :lol:

A Realist

August 4th, 2011
12:12 pm

Brown Eyed Girl,

The couples who have an open relationship discussed the idea before it was implemented. They didn’t cheat then tell the spouse afterwards. That is infidelity, not an open marriage. You have to give the spouse a chance to accept, or let them leave the marriage. That is ethical behaviour. Giving people a chance to agree before you violate a previous agreement is the example we should be setting.

Keeping your word is an admirable example, but any kid nowadays has seen spouses cheat, get divorced (breaking their agreement), teachers cheat, politicians lie. They know that most adults have dishonest moments.

Did your marriage vows say “I will only have sex with you”? Or did they say “love and honor your spouse above all others”? Having an open marriage doesn’t necessarily violate that agreement.

Celisea

August 4th, 2011
12:13 pm

Simple Man – My point is that there is no cast in stone guide for what arealtionship is supposed to be.

No there is not…you might say but whatever it is, it lies in four walls made up of dos don’ts wills wonts, respect, love, faithful…so forth and so on. It ain’t just out there and all over the place. Like I said, do you and what makes you happy…just rightfully label.

Leggs

August 4th, 2011
12:14 pm

“Did your marriage vows say “I will only have sex with you”? Or did they say “love and honor your spouse above all others”?”

I believe it says I will forsake all others!

BlackMagicWoman...in NYC

August 4th, 2011
12:16 pm

PR…..you bad boy! SHHHHH…stop telling our business! LMAO

oneofeach4me

August 4th, 2011
12:16 pm

@Sexy ~ I was speaking in general just as you. I don’t frequent this blog on the regular so I don’t know anyone’s past views. When I stated that is not for “you” to decide, I was speaking in general terms of “you” being those who are judging others for their choices. If you don’t judge others then it wasn’t directed at you. My statement that you questioned was simple and to the point. Don’t use scripture to justify your actions and do not use scripture to crucify someone else. Just as you are entitled to your opinion, so am I to mine. The open thing didn’t work for me, but that doesn’t mean it won’t or doesn’t for someone else.

BlackMagicWoman...in NYC

August 4th, 2011
12:16 pm

LEGGS….SC and I thank you for the repost! :lol:

Leggs

August 4th, 2011
12:17 pm

“…offer you my solemn vow to be your faithful partner in sickness and in health, in good times and in bad, and in joy as well as in sorrow. I promise to love you unconditionally, to support you in your goals, to honor and respect you,” – boiler plate language, yes, but the glue is there!

Lovely Brown- Beautiful but selfish as hell!

August 4th, 2011
12:17 pm

Leggs

August 4th, 2011
12:06 pm
A piece of Biblical advice for my friends, and me, that are single: Ruth patiently waited for her mate, Boaz. While waiting on your Boaz, don’t settle for ANY of his relatives: Brokeaz, Poaz, Lyinaz, Cheatinaz, Dumbaz, Cheapaz, Lockedupaz, Goodfornothinaz, Lazyaz, or Marriedaz, and especially his third cousin, Beatinyoaz. Please, wait on your Boaz and make sure he respects Yoaz

passing this on to my single and holding on sistahs….love it!

SexyCool

August 4th, 2011
12:18 pm

Leggs – well……if they wrote their own.

That reminds me of watching listening to a radio show one morning and this lady and her husband called in she and was going on and on about what the vows that she wrote for their wedding the previous year.

The host asked the husband, “Do you remember anything she said in her vows?” His response, “No.”

Sassy Black..Make it rain down on Meee ;-)

August 4th, 2011
12:19 pm

Whats wrong with viewing them as such???

Simple…do what works for you and is good for yoU…m’kay? This blog is full of different opinions(as being witnessed right now)…you have yours and so does everyone else. Do yoU. :lol:

Purple Reign

August 4th, 2011
12:19 pm

You sure aren’t showing honor and respect to your spouse if you are off with someone else doing things that you should exclusively do with your spouse. LOL

SexyCool

August 4th, 2011
12:20 pm

Oneof…different question then…what do you (not general you, you personally) use to justify your actions?

I’m just asking because it doesn’t sound like you think scriptures should be used for anything? And you are well within your rights to do so. I’m curious.

Leggs

August 4th, 2011
12:23 pm

But wouldn’t it stand to reason whether the vows specifically had the words “no sex with anyone but your wife, that you would BELIEVE, not ASSUME, but BELIEVE it’s part of the wedding package, written or unwritten!!!

Simple Man......

August 4th, 2011
12:23 pm

Lovely,

Ain’t Boaz on WSB 750 right about now???? I think he has had a couple of wives too…. :)

Sassy Black..Make it rain down on Meee ;-)

August 4th, 2011
12:24 pm

That’s funny Lovely Brown!…another blogette posted that and I thought it was too cute but oh soo true!!

SexyCool

August 4th, 2011
12:24 pm

My gratuitous wedding planning mention of the day…

TheDude and I will be taking traditional vows. I want to be sure I can remember what I’ve agreed to. (lol) :)

i'm swiss™

August 4th, 2011
12:24 pm

“…what do you (not general you, you personally) use to justify your actions?

I’m just asking because it doesn’t sound like you think scriptures should be used for anything?”

SexyC — This wasn’t directed to me, but I’ll chime in as a resident agnostic… I basically just ask myself how I would feel about someone else doing the same thing to me. If I would have a problem with it, then it’s probably not cool for me to pull that sh!t on someone else. Pretty simplistic, but effective — for me, anyway.

Brown Eyed Girl!

August 4th, 2011
12:25 pm

Simple Man, are you saying it depends what my definition of “IS” is? LOL I think it is a given when people get married they expect their spouse to have sex with them only. I can’t imagine a guy getting down on one knee and saying to the woman, “will you marry me and can we have an open marriage”. I believe that is something that comes along during the course of a marriage. If two people make that decision during their marriage, then so be it. I just believe at that point it is no longer a marriage, it is an arrangement. As for the children aspect, just because they know it happens, doesn’t mean it needs to happen in their home! Just because they know it happens, doesn’t mean we should add fuel to the fire. I want my kids to believe that parents can stay together and be faithful. I want them to believe that there are actually honorable people still left in the world. Wishful thinking…maybe. But its the world I choose to live in.

Brown Eyed Girl!

August 4th, 2011
12:26 pm

Sorry, my comment was for @A Realist! Got caught up! LOL

SexyCool

August 4th, 2011
12:28 pm

Swiss…I knew that about you already. (lol)

And that should apply to anyone of any belief in damn near any situation.

Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

It just so happens to also be supported by a few different verses in the Bible….:)

oneofeach4me

August 4th, 2011
12:29 pm

@ Sexy ~ I didn’t say scriptures shouldn’t be used for anything. They can be used to teach, uplift, and share stories of life and circumstance. I just don’t think they should be used to justify an action; whether that be justification for open marriage or justification to judge those who practice it.

As for me, I don’t justify my actions because sometimes no matter what you say or do, other’s will see it in their own light. And at the end of the day, after work, school, and kids I have no energy nor time to do so. I have my own set of morals that has treating others as I wish to be treated at the top of the list. I am honest, open, loyal yet realistic at the same time. Life is no picnic, but I try my best to hurt as little people as possible along the way.

Purple Reign

August 4th, 2011
12:29 pm

So for the guys that believe in open marriages is that just for you or can your woman do the same thing openly?

SexyCool

August 4th, 2011
12:33 pm

And quite frankly, Swiss, from the way that you present yourself, your attitudes, actions, beliefs seem to line up pretty closely in most ways with basic so-called Christian values.

Now, why this particular set of beliefs HAS to be defined solely as Christian? I don’t know. I didn’t write that rule.

czBrat

August 4th, 2011
12:33 pm

WOW!! five pages by lunch. cool.

agreeing with SC that swiss is following the golden rule, and that’s a rendition of love thy neighbor as thyself. easy breezy.

Values

August 4th, 2011
12:33 pm

It always annoys me when people get judgmental about how other peoples’ relationship should be. Many of today’s comments say that an open relationship is not for me. That’s fine.
But other comments take on this harshly condemning tone, even invoking God (as if we all share the same faith). That bugs me.
Maybe people in open relationships are on to something, maybe they aren’t. But we really shouldn’t try to judge what other consenting adults do in their own circumstances.

SexyCool

August 4th, 2011
12:36 pm

Oneof – I use my belief system, sometimes supported by scriptures, sometimes not so much, to justify my actions, not to others, but as what makes sense for me.

Lovely Brown- Beautiful but selfish as hell!

August 4th, 2011
12:37 pm

Lovely,

Ain’t Boaz on WSB 750 right about now???? I think he has had a couple of wives too….

Ahhh, simple man…..

I can’t do anything but :lol:

Purple Reign

August 4th, 2011
12:37 pm

If you have kids a girl or boy. How do you raise that boy to be a man or that girl to a lady by letting them see the example of a open marriage if indeed you are married? You teach them to take care of home and another home as well?

Simple Man......

August 4th, 2011
12:37 pm

Brown Eyes, I have a neighbor that is From Saudia Arabia…His wife will not come outside unless she is covered from head to toe…He told me that he has two addiitional wives but can not get visas for them to come to the U.S… I can’t ask the wife here how she feels about it beacuse their custom does not allow me to speak to her about such things… She and her children seem happy and content. Who is to say that they are wrong? I know that there are religious differences, but why does one set of beliefs have to trump another??? I think Sassy has told me on many occasions to to me….I will always do me, but in a situation where whe are openly discussing ideas, I can draw a solid line between whats good for me or whats good for you and what is jsut plain wrong……

Into the Light

August 4th, 2011
12:37 pm

I didn’t read it that way. But if I’m asked a question regarding morality, I can’t answer without giving reasons based on Christianity, because that is my moral base.

Purple Reign

August 4th, 2011
12:38 pm

Off topic question and not for you Swiss. Are those annonyed by people as they say are using “God and scripture” go to church?

Celisea

August 4th, 2011
12:39 pm

Swiss – basically just ask myself how I would feel about someone else doing the same thing to me

That’s biblical…YOU ARE A BELIEVER!!!

Lovely Brown- Beautiful but selfish as hell!

August 4th, 2011
12:40 pm

I want my kids to believe that parents can stay together and be faithful. I want them to believe that there are actually honorable people still left in the world. Wishful thinking…maybe. But its the world I choose to live in.

I choose to live in that world too Brown Eyed Girl :-)

Simple Man......

August 4th, 2011
12:44 pm

here I go again…Does practicing a lifestyle outside of Christian guidlines make a person less than honorable?????

Purple Reign

August 4th, 2011
12:46 pm

Simple, I guess that would depend on how one would describe honor.

Sassy Black..Make it rain down on Meee ;-)

August 4th, 2011
12:50 pm

in a situation where whe are openly discussing ideas, I can draw a solid line between whats good for me or whats good for you and what is jsut plain wrong……

You’re starting to sound a tad contridictory with that last sentence..you just stated you will always do yoU..so that being said, how can yoU determine what’s good for someone else and what’s wrong for someone else? Not unless you’re talking about children who need guidance and looking after… and not adults. Just a question not an accusation…

Celisea

August 4th, 2011
12:50 pm

Simple Man – Do you interact with women that profess Christianity?

Sassy Black..Make it rain down on Meee ;-)

August 4th, 2011
12:51 pm

Does practicing a lifestyle outside of Christian guidlines make a person less than honorable?????

No it doesn’t…

BigBoi Long Thick Stick

August 4th, 2011
12:52 pm

we men need open relationship. We need our strange and you ladies know it.
We got to get our swirl on. Am so glad to see that lighter gurls mixing it up with
the mandingos. Especially the married ladies. Nothing better than a undercover
lover. So yes it is a good thing and I encourage all you sweet southern belles
and hot wives to keep a brotha on the side.

i'm swiss™

August 4th, 2011
12:53 pm

“That’s biblical…YOU ARE A BELIEVER!!!”

It is, indeed. Of course, I’m sure you could also find similar teachings in the Koran, or the teachings of Buddhism, Hinduism, etc., not to mention just basic human empathy. I just don’t need to believe that it’s the word of an invisible man in the sky to recognize that it’s probably a good rule to live by… ;-)

Simple Man......

August 4th, 2011
12:56 pm

Sassy..thats my point….I the things that I view are wrong are absolute…i.e. Murder, Child molestation ect…In the context of todays discussion, I do not see open marriages / relationships as wrong, they are just not for me. I Believe that its possible for adults to make choices about how they choose to live their lives that are unique to them. I know that some of those choices may be outside of my lane..That doers not make them wrong or dishonorable, just different…..

Simple Man......

August 4th, 2011
12:59 pm

Celisea, I most certainly do…My Grandmother is devout in her beliefs and she is the best woman I have ever known..