Are you willing to negotiate monogamy?
May 19th, 2011
10:56 AM ET

Are you willing to negotiate monogamy?

Ian Kerner, a sexuality counselor and New York Times best-selling author, blogs about sex on Thursdays on The Chart. Read more from him at his website, GoodInBed.

When you take your marriage vows, you’re pretty much making the commitment to never have sex with anyone else ever again. Wow - just writing that is scary.

With the demise of Arnold Schwarzenegger and Maria Shriver’s 25-year marriage making headlines, it’s hard not to wonder if long-term monogamy is possible or even practical.

As a sex therapist, not a day goes by that I don’t see people who are stuck, feeling as if they have to give up on their marriage, or give up on sex - or cheat. My patients have taught me that sex - or a lack of it - is one of the major contributors to marital strife between longtime couples.

Many people don’t want to throw in the towel, however, which is why the idea of “negotiating monogamy” is becoming more popular. From open relationships, to disclosing affairs before they happen, to giving a partner a “free pass,” negotiated monogamy is a way for some couples to stay committed to each other without having to stay sexually faithful.

Such an approach may seem to fly in the face of the concept of marriage - I don’t blame you for raising your eyebrows or shaking your head at the suggestion. But hear me out.

We live in an age when we’re surrounded by countless arguments (or maybe just excuses) against monogamy: Men have a biological imperative to spread their seed and have always cheated (“boys will be boys”); humans are wired for serial monogamy, not one lifelong relationship; long-term relationships beget boredom; people are living longer and longer but half of all marriages fail… Whew.

When you consider what we’re up against, it may not be such a bad idea to give negotiated monogamy a chance before we dismiss it outright as a violation of the sanctity of marriage.

In my own practice, I often raise the option of negotiated monogamy with couples who have worked their way into permanently sexless marriages, or who feel starved for sex - but not with each other. The very concept of negotiated monogamy is a provocative and useful way for these couples to talk about sex and marriage, even if they choose not to practice it.

As with most issues, it’s better to talk about something and understand each other’s boundaries than to guess or cheat or commit to life of silent desperation. And you know what? It turns out that once couples start talking about what they would or wouldn’t allow - strippers, lap dances, flirty friendships, free passes, oral sex with other people, swinging, open relationships - they often tend to get turned on and end up going home and having sex with each other.

After all, the brain is the biggest of sex organ and, as I discussed in last week’s column about fantasies, even just talking about sex can get people interested in actually having sex.

So remember: Taking a marriage vow does not mean taking a vow of silence. If anything, being married should give you a level of trust where you feel like you can talk about anything. And if you actually want to try negotiated monogamy and your partner doesn’t (or vice versa)? Well, at least you’re having an adult conversation instead of acting like children - or former governors.

soundoff (2,204 Responses)
  1. Jack

    P.S. History, and the literature, have both shown that open relationships invariably turn into broken relationships. You would have thought that a guy with a PhD would have read the literature. But I don't think Ian Kerner has read the literature. He's merely trying to drag down the culture to fit his immoral views. PhD's, in an of themselves, mean nothing in our day. There are people without college who are extremely wise and there are many with PhD's who think they're wise but are extreme fools. Ian Kerner is an excellent example of the later.

    May 19, 2011 at 11:22 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Jack 2

      Jack, he is not saying to go out and sleep with every single person you lay eyes on, he is simply stating another choice that SOME, not all, couples could look into before getting a divorce. When marrigae vows were written the average life span for human beings was 45 years, that's why girls were married off at 12 and 13, did you know who you wanted to spend the rest off your life with while in 7th grade? Times change and we, as human beings, have to be ready to evolve with them or die off. This option is a huge trust issue with two loving people who still want to be together, but are unhappy with a portion of their life. Open your mind and just look at this article as it is, one man's opinion on the matter of monogamy, not GOD,as you put it, leaving him in charge and being able to dictate to the rest of us what to do.

      May 19, 2011 at 11:44 | Report abuse |
    • J

      Why are you so goofy?

      May 19, 2011 at 12:49 | Report abuse |
    • J

      What do you mean when you say, " Ian Kerner is an excellent example of the later." Do you mean latter?

      May 19, 2011 at 12:53 | Report abuse |
    • Alexis

      If you are going to make such a sweeping statement you ought to provide links to verifiable sources. Pretty much every couple I know has been mired by infielity and trust issues. The one couple I know that is stilltogethe rand stronger than ever is an open relationship couple. My experience betrays your statement but I am not stating my view point is FACT the way you are yours.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:58 | Report abuse |
    • nonamedave

      The author's point (I think) is that these relationships are doomed anyway, why not try something that could possibly save it.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:19 | Report abuse |
    • a PhD

      Hey Jack,

      ever fly on an airplane? take a medicine to save or prolong your life? do you drive a car? is your food free of deadly bacteria? oh, how about that computer you just used to express your own stupidity?

      yeah – all invented, refined, or developed by engineers and scientists, many of who get years of training (your worthless PhD) so that they can improve humanity's existence (and help stupids like you actually survive).

      May 19, 2011 at 13:28 | Report abuse |
    • KK

      You are an idiot who has no clue about science, engineering, medicine or anything that requires intelligence. Where do you work again, for a bank or construction?

      May 19, 2011 at 13:37 | Report abuse |
    • Zach

      Don't get married if you are going to sleep with other people other than your partner. The whole point of marriage is to show your loyalty and love for ONE other person who u deeply care about. Marriage isn't easy. That doesn't mean you sleep with other people. An open marriage is not a real marriage. Just an excuse to sleep with other people. DUHH

      May 19, 2011 at 13:38 | Report abuse |
    • C Men

      @ Zach – not everyone has the same religious view of marriage that you do. I'm sure that's upsetting to the religious folk out there but it's a fact.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:40 | Report abuse |
    • Zach

      @C Dude. Umm even if you take religion out of marriage. Isn't the whole point of marriage to settle down and say I love you and i am committed to you and only you for the rest of our lives. It seems open marriages takes away from the whole point of getting married in the first place. Marriage is all about committment and the struggle both partners face in the fight to stay committed.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:48 | Report abuse |
    • Lucas

      I completely agree

      May 19, 2011 at 13:57 | Report abuse |
    • Dan

      Zach: I appreciate your perspective on marriage but not everyone shares your views. It turns out that some people actually think for themselves rather than just trying to fit in to society's expectations.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:00 | Report abuse |
    • cnnreader

      My wife has a PHD. I thank God everyday that we have them. Her research in medicine has saved countles lives.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:00 | Report abuse |
    • Juma82

      "latter", not "later"....

      May 19, 2011 at 14:03 | Report abuse |
    • Zach

      @ Dan. Umm Dan!! You are following society if you get married Dan. Don't get married if you want to go against society. If u think differently don't get married and sleep with whoever u want. Once, however, you get married you have made a vow. Saying "I have made a vow, but I really don't just follow society, like everyone else, I do what I want." Is just an excuse to break the vow and be ok with it. What your basically saying is, I got married because that's the thing to do, but I don't adhere to any vow or commitment because hey man, that's just society holding me back. You are contradicting urself.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:11 | Report abuse |
    • AB

      You are absolutely right thank you. So many people now days have mistaking the truth for immorality. What they don't know is that all of them are going to answer to the Lord one day. Marriages are broken because people are very selfish and failed to compromise in order to meet each other's expectation with respect

      They watch a lot of TV and introduce Hollywood ways of acting in to their lives as if it is real. They failed to differentiate acting for real life and this is causing more problems in their family lives. Marriage to a total stranger is very hard. Everyone think that there is compatibility among people but everyone failed to understand that people are different from each other with many different ways. In order for a marriage to work they need to learn how to compromise and meet each other differences.

      I am a well educated woman with a master in computer science and I am married to a high school dropout, not once in my life do I mistreated him. We are very different and we have been together for the past 12 years. Over the years I have learned that compromising have made a big different in my relationship. I have to let go a lot of my ways to meet him half way. I acknowledge that he is a good man; he doesn’t cheat or lie to me and all I have to do is acknowledge that we are different from each other and from different back ground. We have problems just like any other married couples but when we have a problem we think it over, we apologize to each other and promise never to revisit that problem again. Same goes for verbal abuse, we show respect to each other all the time. Selfishness also is a big problem; we made our material things available to each other without counting them like little kids.

      The first time we fight over money, we both realize what on heart are we doing? We made money and why should we fight over that when we can get to work and make more. So we decided that fight over money which is a material thing will never happen again. So before people get divorce, they need to re-evaluate the problems they are having and see if the problems are worth separate a life that they promise each other in the presence of God; because we will give an account to God as to what happen, why we did not honor our commitment.

      People forget that God created marriage for a reason.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:14 | Report abuse |
    • BLC

      Adultery is adultery – period. This author is just helping others create a justification. I do, however, agree with his suggestion of openness, but that should lead to a furthered desire to focus on each other – not fulfill some urge that will lead to a desire for more.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:14 | Report abuse |
    • AL

      WELL SAID! WHO'S IDEA IS IT TO GIVE THIS GUY A COLUMN AT ALL?!!! If people want to have open relationships that is their perogative but marriage & openess can't happily co-exist nor should they. The entire point of marriage is committing to one person & one person only, it's a vow. If you want to be open then fine just stick to dating & make sure your partner knows. For those of us who are happily married (& those of us who belong married) we will stick to our vows happily because if you are truly in love with your partner you are not going to desire others.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:19 | Report abuse |
    • C Men

      Why would I not marry my wife? Actually if the government didn't make it so beneficial we probably wouldn't be married. Heck even if we weren't after 7 years the government would have considered us married anyway.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:24 | Report abuse |
    • RB2

      Most people cant even negotiate who does what around the house without getting defensive and such. I fail to see how this would work let alone be positive in any way shape or form. People are creatures of habit. There will always be a loser and a winner or favorite in this scenario and all the contestants in this show of stupidity would irrevocably ruin their relationships.

      Just as soon as the players got tired of playing the game or got older and unwanted. This article is a piece of rubbish.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:30 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa

      The only people who say "there are wise people who didn't go to college" are people who didn't go to college. No need to justify your lack of a degree, but obviously you feel inferior because of it.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:32 | Report abuse |
    • Rbnlegend101

      RB, there are a lot of things in this world that I don't understand. That doesn't mean they are impossible, or even unlikely. it just means I haven't looked at them very hard. If your marriage is about keeping score and winning, you shouldn't consider any sort of alternative to monogamy, and don't worry, you will be dating again before too long.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:49 | Report abuse |
    • Jason

      History, and literature, show that some planes blow up in the sky. So, lets stop putting landing gear on them. You see, every situation is different, stop making generalizations.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:44 | Report abuse |
    • Patrick

      History has shown that monogamy was a later human development.

      May 19, 2011 at 16:23 | Report abuse |
    • rh

      I am areligious, and I don't think people should get married if they are going to sleep around. IMHO, it is bucking the system.

      The issues of STD's and sometimes fatal jealousy are too much to risk it. But then again, people climb Everest or sky dive "just to feel alive", so sleeping around while married may be necessary for some people's self-worth.

      I think it is two people fooling themselves.

      But I do agree, there are MANY unhappy couples out there, but the answer is not "work it out using an open relationship", the answer is to get divorced. If you are in an open relationship, you risk a SERIOUS divorce battle where you "convinced your wife to take part in degrading activities" and poof your money is gone. Cheating is fine I guess if you already have an STD and you have no money to give up.

      May 19, 2011 at 21:19 | Report abuse |
  2. Bob


    May 19, 2011 at 11:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. BAM

    Who is this "God" character you speak of and who left him/her/it in charge of anything?

    May 19, 2011 at 11:32 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Michelle

      That would be me. At least, that's what my wife calls me when things get good.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:01 | Report abuse |
    • John

      He made you and everything so get over it. Your Father will put you in Hell soon. Its what he does to any one who thinks he is a fake.

      May 19, 2011 at 16:39 | Report abuse |
    • huh?

      oooh, I'm SCARED of your big mean sky-fairy!

      May 19, 2011 at 21:03 | Report abuse |
    • ADiff

      God? Oh him...yeah, he's the bloke made everyone with those almost irresistible urges to rut with any and all attractive partners for the bulk of one's life, simply as an inherent element in human genetic engineering. Yeah, God's the Ultimate Pander...oh yes. And if 'God Wills' it, we might reconsider any ethical and moral perspectives to the contrary closely....

      May 19, 2011 at 17:00 | Report abuse |
    • FaithinChrist

      Read my post above....he's alwalys been here, He is just waiting on you.

      May 20, 2011 at 09:40 | Report abuse |
    • NC


      May 20, 2011 at 15:29 | Report abuse |
  4. Joeywang

    Jack, U R an IDIOT. Did you actually read the article or just make a summation? You cannot have Adultery if both partners agree on the terms. What do you not understand, REALLY!! Go back into your Religious hole with the rest of your 800BC friends and next time you have a thought, LET IT GO..

    May 19, 2011 at 11:35 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Heh

      Negotiated adultery is still adultery.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:58 | Report abuse |
    • Jessica

      You only understand the English use of the word adultery and not in the sense of a sacramental vow such as marriage.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:29 | Report abuse |
    • C Men

      We don't all consider marriage a sacrament. Sorry. Go enforce your church rules at your church and don't worry about me having esx with people other than my wife.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:42 | Report abuse |
    • Zach

      HAHAA "you can't have adultery if both partners agree" it doesn't even matter if both partners agree. A marriage is a sacred thing. Even if partners both agree you are commiting adultery against the marriage itself. The marriage is all about commiting yourself to ONE person. And then you say u can sleep with other people if we make an agreement?? Why even get married you fools.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:43 | Report abuse |
    • Len

      Actually, the monogamy is considered a more modern development. Humans used to pack animals, its not too shocking that we don't want to stay with only person. If you look at the bible, for example, much of the old testament involves a more of more than one person. Many kings did as well. Monogamy was added religion to prevent the spread of disease. More wives = more wealth. Most people practices monogamy because the male couldn't afford more than one.

      Personally, if both agree, why not? Adultery isn't the problem, it's a lack of trust. Communication and commitment to all in the relationship as important. It is why polygamy does work in some cultures. Personally, I don't believe it would work in American culture because we are way too selfish.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:05 | Report abuse |
    • PLankHunYA

      Wow- and we wonder why the divorce rate is so high.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:05 | Report abuse |
    • Len

      oops! Stupid typo in the beginning.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:06 | Report abuse |
  5. Valerie


    Why not just stay single?? Seriously............to me, this is the same as marrying someone so they can stay in the country.....your intentions aren't to be truly married, you are just looking for worldly benefits of doing so.......

    May 19, 2011 at 11:40 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Alexis

      Why is your definition of marriage applicable to everyone else's???? If it iopen marriage is not for you that is fine, but don't you dare pass judgment on the lives of others that you know ZERO about you arrogant sack of idiocy.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:00 | Report abuse |
    • Zach

      Alexis, it's not Valerie's def. of marriage. It IS the definition of marriage. Marriage is the joining of two people who vow to commit themselves to each other and each other only for the rest of their lives. It is a hard and awesome and beautiful thing. Any other definition of marriage is a perversion of the true definition. i.e. open marriages are a perversion to real marriage. DUHH

      May 19, 2011 at 13:52 | Report abuse |
    • geoz

      But some people, you may have noticed, are not single. So your advice may be good, but doesn't apply. What now?

      May 19, 2011 at 14:02 | Report abuse |
    • Dan

      Zach: please keep your perverted thoughts to yourself.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:07 | Report abuse |
    • Pres.Clinton

      @Zach Can you define IS for me?

      May 19, 2011 at 14:32 | Report abuse |
    • Jason

      Why not stay single? Because we love each other. Why get married and then be deceitful? Play is just play.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:46 | Report abuse |
    • Patrick

      Only an individual can determine for themselves if they are married, as marriage is a subjective concept that, by its very nature cannot have a universal definition any more than "evil" or "good" can.

      Like faiths and fingerprints – everyone is different.

      May 19, 2011 at 16:34 | Report abuse |
  6. Rational person

    While the idea of citing anonymous 'literature' to back up my ideas is tempting, I'd rather they stand on logic. And I would also rather not presume to judge anyone else's religion, background, or knowledge of religion. Certainly not by their name. Sorry Jack.

    What I will say is that I disagree with the championing of open relationships. This opinion piece seemed to be saying monogamy is hard. marriage is hard. So why don't we just not do the hard stuff? I would venture that the relative inability of most married couples to either stay married or faithful is a clear reflection of the self-centered, spoiled, and thoughtless mentality that took off in this country with the baby boomers. It's almost precisely the same mindset, fittingly, that enables nameless people on the internet to insult someone's knowledge and faith while offering baseless judgements.

    A vow is a vow. If you cannot honor it, you should not make it.

    May 19, 2011 at 11:44 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Rbnlegend101

      We didn't all make the same vows. And for those of you who did make that particular vow, probably without thinking about it, is divorce really preferable to a re-negotiation? I like what he says about how marriage means having the trust and commitment to discuss absoloutely everything that you think and feel. If you think re-negotiating is taking the easy way out, you haven't ever sat down and had a really in-depth discussion of uncomfortable feelings with your spouse. You may have lectured or bullied them about an issue, but you haven't talked. Suffering in silence until you just can't take it any more is a much easier path to take.

      Here in the real world, people change over time, and it's difficult. Feelings get hurt, intimacy waxes and wanes, and the only way to stay happy together is to open your mouth and talk, and then shut your mouth and listen. Over and over again.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:19 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa

      Yes, divorce is preferable to renegotiation. If your spouse can't keep from out of other peoples beds, its over. Out of all things, that one thing should remain sacred. NEVER cheat on your significant other.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:41 | Report abuse |
    • EWT

      I agree, and I'm dismayed by the new conventional wisdom that suggests that humans are "biologically programmed" to stray. If anything, the opposite is true. As humans evolved a larger brain case, it meant that infants had to be born before their brains would reach anywhere near full size or capacity. This fact renders infants helpless for a long while—in need of constant care—and parenting for early humans in hunter/gatherer societies tended to foster predominantly monogamous male/female bonds as a means of rearing children through teamwork.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:52 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa

      EWT, actually we ARE biologically programmed to stray. We are still animals. But we have the choice. We don't HAVE to. Your male kitty will be with as many female kitties he can because he has no choice in the matter. But we are capable of higher thinking. Thats why it means so much when the significant other sleeps/or doesn't, with someone else. Because you are making the choice to keep that one part of yourself with the person you claim to have decided to spend your life with.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:55 | Report abuse |
    • Rbnlegend101

      If you prefer divorce to having a discussion, I do not envy your marriage. There is no discussion, no words, that could end my marriage. That's what it means to be comitted. We will not give in to one anothers every whim, but we will talk about anything the other feels. Even when it's ugly or unhappy. And if it's not ugly or unhappy now, it will be. I've only ever heard of that one perfect human, and I don't particularly believe in all the stories about him. Come to think of it, the people who do believe in him seem to think he wasn't married.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:07 | Report abuse |
    • polyimperfect

      Melissa, that's the point–we have the choice to structure our lives however we want. My husband and I are committed to each other as life partners emotionally, physically, financially and logistically. He's someone I want to grow old with and who I can rely on to get my back when everything falls apart. We've also had an open relationship for the entire 8 years we've been together, also known as polyamory. His girlfriend is married and dating another man also, my boyfriend is dating another woman, I'd be happy to date a wonderful woman if the right one came along, and all of us get along really well like a huge extended family. We all hang out on a regular basis, have totally open communication and trust and support for each others' individual relationships, and I couldn't imagine living any other way. All human relationships are hard whether they're monogamous or not, and non-monogamy is not for everyone. But for myself, I discovered that instead of trying to control my partner and live under a huge weight of jealousy and fear and possessiveness, I actually learned to talk about my worries, get genuine support from multiple people, and move past my deepest fears into truly authentic relationships. I never doubt for a moment that my husband and bf are with me because they *want* to be, not because they have to be. For me, it's not a cop-out or giving up–it's an expansion of love and trust and peace and happiness. It is helping me face my fears and become the person I want to be. It's hard as hell sometimes but so worth it.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:08 | Report abuse |
    • EWT

      Melissa, that's generally my point. That larger brain case—the one makes us capable of the higher thinking that you note—is the same feature of our biology that makes us helpless as infants and in need of solid, long-term, team-based care from our parents. Most other mammals, as with your example of cats, can survive on their own much faster than we can, and thus require no such monogamous bonds between parents. Monogamy is our true heritage, even if people selfishly want to stray. When a spouse cheats, he or she is effectively stooping to the habits of animals with smaller brain-to-body ratios.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:08 | Report abuse |
    • Rbnlegend101

      Study of ancient peoples does not suggest that long term monogamy was part of society until we developed more advanced concepts of property. Even that was more of a one father, more than one mothers sort of family unit. Weaker males, less able to provide for offspring had no mates.

      I have a hard time understanding why women are so solidly comtted to a paradigm that classes them in with the rest of the marital property.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:11 | Report abuse |
    • Rbnlegend101

      Your dependant child theory is somewhat relevant, EWT. But you leave out a key element. The seven year itch. I have known several non-monogamous couples that got very monogamous when they had a child, and stayed that way for a few years. But a seven year old child, in uncivilized hunter gatherer terms, can fend for itself as a member of the tribe, and the family unit can change again. A few years works fine, and when the human lifespan is 35 years, you can talk about an exclusive lifetime pairing. When a relationship may last 50 or more years, those hunter gatherer origins are just as destructive as our craving for as much sugar as we can consume. Helpful when you collect food with a spear and a pointed stick, not so great if you can buy 100 candy bars at a time.

      No one is saying free for all. But we have a lot of language, and we can talk about things, and make decisions with the people we love.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:17 | Report abuse |
    • Damien

      I completely agree with you RP.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:35 | Report abuse |
    • JQP

      "A vow is a vow. If you cannot honor it, you should not make it." and I am sure that every vow you have ever taken or will ever take you will honor, no matter what. What if you are are overweight and you vow to lose the weight and you vow to never get heavy again, I am sure that every single person who took that vow lives up to it. What if on that last night of drinking while hunched over the toilet throwing up you vow to never drink again, I am sure all people who took that vow lived up to that one as well. Think about it.

      & to Melissa, divorce being preferrable over "negotiated monogamy", assuming you had kids let me say that is as selffish as you would say "negotiated monogamy" is. And why you ask, because your children may not agree. One household where there is NO physical abuse or drug/alcohol abuse and everyone can "get along" is preferrable to most kids as opposed to two households forced to split time between Mom/Dad. (or at least it would have been preferred to me growing up)

      May 19, 2011 at 13:37 | Report abuse |
    • thefurious

      People might change over time, but when you make the commitment of being married to someone, you are taking on the responsibility of maintaining it, regardless of "change" that happens. Any "change" that results in a stagnant marriage is a result of one or the other spouse or both, not communicating with each other and being completely selfish. Too many people rush into marriages, not really knowing their partner nor what they want out of the relationship. They also lackadaisically jump into a marriage without weighing the results of what being married entails. Our culture now is a culture of selfishness, personal irresponsibility, callousness and without personal introspection. Thats why so many marriages fail.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:53 | Report abuse |
    • Patrick

      "When a spouse cheats, he or she is effectively stooping to the habits of animals with smaller brain-to-body ratios."
      That reads very similarly to this quote:
      "When a human being embraces deism, a rigid suppression of cognitive thought is implemented."

      At times, something else may be more important than being smart.

      May 19, 2011 at 16:44 | Report abuse |
    • Patrick

      EWT, Human prehistory is theorized to be largely communal, and the raising of children was the same. Monogomy was a later development in human civilization as it was not practical in the prehistoric period.

      Note also that the female is biologically designed to have multiple partners in one single event. The journalist Terry Gould wrote a book that first introduced this theory to me. Check it out if you can find it.

      May 19, 2011 at 16:46 | Report abuse |
  7. IanL


    Just for the record, the name Ian is NOT Jewish... it is Scottish. It is the equivalent of John in the U.S.

    May 19, 2011 at 11:44 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Andrew

      Meh, Jack is probably just anti semitic.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:26 | Report abuse |
    • Jack Off

      Scottish, Jewish...same thing...don't interrupt him, he's on a roll...

      May 19, 2011 at 12:58 | Report abuse |
    • nonamedave

      They are both stereotyped as notoriously cheap...

      May 19, 2011 at 13:22 | Report abuse |
    • John

      Hey there only ONE JOHN and nothing like it anywhere.

      May 19, 2011 at 16:40 | Report abuse |
  8. Norm

    The rule in our marriage is, if you're gonna cheat at least do it with someone you'd WANT to tell the other person about. You nailed the Terminator/Gov of California? HIGH FIVE! You shtupped the gardener? eh, not so much. Unless, of course, he's going to put in the new rose beds for free. In which case, HIGH FIVE!

    May 19, 2011 at 11:46 | Report abuse | Reply
    • polyimperfect

      Lol indeed! You never know what benefits it will bring! If I like swing dancing, poetry and coffee shops and my hubby doesn't, I can do all that w/ my bf. If he likes going on weekend rock-climbing trips and I don't, he can do that w/ his gf and I can enjoy the peace & solitude of a weekend with no obligations. It's a huge relief to not have to be everything to your life partner. And no, love and intimacy don't *have* to be a part of all that....but it sure adds to the experience! 🙂

      May 19, 2011 at 13:14 | Report abuse |
    • D

      @poly Not sure why the comment didn't post the first time. I think these activities are what FRIENDS are for! You know, just regular close friends.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:56 | Report abuse |
  9. DR

    This idea could be called "Negotiating Expectations" or "Negotiating Rules of Marriage" but what he describes is NOT, in any way, monogamy.

    May 19, 2011 at 11:55 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Truefax


      May 19, 2011 at 12:00 | Report abuse |
    • Rbnlegend101

      I somewhat agree, but it's a quibble about terminology. The people negotiating could arrive at monogamy as their agreement. Or they may arrive at an agreement they would describe as monogamy, but which others may not. for example, nothing physical, but you can do what you want on the internet. They are negotiating the terms of their monogamy, or exceptions to it. I would say "Negotiating Rules of Exclusivity in Your Relationship" if I wanted a good acruate set of words. This stuff doesn't just apply to married people. I know a guy who got dumped before the first date, because he had arranged a date with someone else, and she was furious he was "cheating" on her. They hadn't had their first date, and she expected total, "you won't talk to another woman" monogamy from him, based on their plans for dinner and a movie.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:14 | Report abuse |
  10. Melissa

    Not a chance in hell. If my husband ever cheats on me, its over.

    May 19, 2011 at 12:10 | Report abuse | Reply
    • SoS

      It's not cheating if you tell him it's okay. Please read AND comprehend the article next time. 🙂

      May 19, 2011 at 12:21 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa

      It IS cheating, you child. Sleeping with someone other than your significant other while in a relationship IS cheating.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:23 | Report abuse |
    • Experienced

      You don't know how you'll react and to say you do is foolish. If you really love your partner, it's not as easy as "it's over." Hopefully, you never have to find out.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:27 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa

      I don't? My first husband cheated on me and we tried to stay together. He became abusive, trying to cut me off from my family, physically abusive, mentally abusive. For years I just took it and said nothing. Finally I met some wonderful people who helped me out of the situation and left. I will NEVER tolerate that kind of thing again. NEVER. It nearly destroyed me. And it all cheated because he slept with some girl at a party. NEVER AGAIN.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:36 | Report abuse |
    • Rbnlegend101

      Simple answers work for simple situations. A life long partnership between two actual human beings is more complicated than you are accounting for. In ten years when you are craving physical intimacy, and he can't or won't provide it, come back and tell us how simple this subject is.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:36 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa

      Incidentally, I'm remarried to a good man. He treats me like gold. And since I will never tolerate what I received from my first husband ever again, if this husband EVER cheats on me, its over. No discussions. Its just done and over. I am NOT going down that slippery slope again.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:38 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa

      Rbnlegend101 , My current husband I have been together 12 years very happily. What were you saying again?

      May 19, 2011 at 12:39 | Report abuse |
    • Rbnlegend101

      If he can't talk about his feelings honestly and in depth, even if they are uncomfortable, how do you really know he is happy? Look at the news, Maria and Arnold were saying how happy they were, not so long ago. CK says if her husband ever brought it up with her, that would lead directly to divorce. I'm sure he knows that, and knows that he can not be honest with her if his feelings conflict with her expectations. The article doesn't say, "go have an affair with someone" it says "you can talk to your spouse about what the limits are, and what they should be". If you can't talk, you are doomed, and it's just a question of when and how.

      Hey, if your relationship is working the way it is, that's great. But if you think your relationship is just like everyone else's relationship, you are wrong. What works for me may not work for you, and what works for you certainly won't work for me. You can tell me what works for you, but you can't tell me what doesn't work for me. Your answer isn't as universal as you present it. And the more dogmatic and absoloute you are about it, the more you sound like all those people who later end up on the wrong side of the issue. Arnold was big on family values, and look at him, turns out he has more kids than his wife.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:53 | Report abuse |
    • SoS

      It is NOT cheating if you give permission. Again, read AND comprehend. It will serve you well.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:55 | Report abuse |
    • Whitney

      The whole point is that it's NOT cheating if it's done with full knowledge and consent and support of everyone involved. Cheating occurs when there's deception, and you can have cheating in open relationships too. It's the honesty that makes the difference.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:56 | Report abuse |
    • Michelle

      Melissa, you are completely missing the point of the article. Take me and my wife, for example (yes, we're gay). I'd be polyamorous by nature, but she generally prefers monogamy. I love her more than anything, so she calls the shots. I'm 100% honest with her if I find someone else attractive. She's also 100% honest with me if SHE finds someone else attractive. She and I are absolutely committed to each other, but if we both find the SAME person attractive, and that person also finds us attractive, then perhaps something might come of it. She doesn't mind me flirting with and kissing other women, as long as she knows about it. I find it extremely HOT when she kisses other women, and have openly encouraged her to do so. It has actually strengthened our relationship.

      And before you get the wrong impression that we're loose... wrong again. In over four years together, we've only found one couple (actually a married straight couple) that we enjoy flirting with enough to do anything. They're equally committed to each other, but open to possibilities. Everything is 100% honest, forthright, and out in the open. My wife knows that I like to flirt, and she has no problem with that, because every night, I'm in HER bed. THAT IS NOT CHEATING. Cheating is where you lie to your spouse, go behind their back, and function dishonestly.

      Maybe your husband cheated on you because you were such a frigid prude that he felt he couldn't be honest with you. He shouldn't have cheated, but perhaps you needed to pull that rod out of your fourth point of contact.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:57 | Report abuse |
    • SoS


      Today, you win the internet.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:59 | Report abuse |
    • nonamedave

      Melissa is not very bright.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:24 | Report abuse |
    • RC

      One definition of cheating would be to operate outside of established rules. If both parties agree to an open relationship, how is that considered cheating?

      May 19, 2011 at 13:33 | Report abuse |
    • Orchal

      I wouldn't say Melissa isn't 'bright', but it does sound like she has some unresolved hurt from her past marriage, (hence the anger in her posts when she speaks of it).

      Melissa, it is great that your new husband treats you like gold. And it is great that monogamy works for you. The point is that it doesn't always work that way for everyone. And it is best to be honest with your partner rather than hiding it, (ala 'cheating'). To cheat, by definition, is to break the rules. Folks have different rules – as long as everyone's abiding by them, cheating is not present.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:51 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa

      Michelle, I don't care that you're gay. I really wish gay people would stop feeling the need to constantly point out the fact that they're gay (I kind of got it anyway by your name and the use of the word wife). I don't feel the need to point out I'm straight all the time. Just live your life.

      I care that you're wrong. And you aren't in a committed marriage. Committed people don't swing.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:54 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa

      nonamedave, no that would be you. I don't make excuses for peoples bad behavior. Unlike you.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:55 | Report abuse |
    • Zach

      @ Sos. It is cheating even if you give permission you fool. Your cheating against the vow of the marriage itself, even if both partners agree. Marriage is a vow to commit yourself to ONE and only ONE person. Anything else is a breaking of the vow and adultery. Who cares what the article says fool.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:01 | Report abuse |
    • John

      Ok, I'll say this once for the cheap seats. MONOgamous...any more than one is not a monogamous relationship no matter what you "agree" to call it .....negotioated, open, or whatever. If you're happy doing it by all means I don't want to stop you but don't try to legitimize fooling around by playing with words and meanings.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:08 | Report abuse |
    • I want da gold!

      Not cheating.

      Open book test – not cheating
      Open book under the desk during a closed book test – cheating

      Not difficult to understand.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:23 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa2

      Why do you care how other people choose to live their lives? When you married, you had expectations that your husband couldn't meet. That's fine as long as both people knew what those expectations were and agreed to them before hand. He didn't meet the expectations he promised you. That's YOUR marriage.

      The expectations I have of my husband and that most people have of their spouses will differ from couple to couple. Why do you care so deeply if other people have different expectations? If you are in a marriage where you think everything is as you wish, then you have no reason to be bothered by what other people do. It's none of your business.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:42 | Report abuse |
    • Rbnlegend101

      Excellent metaphor, about the open book marriage. The professor sets the terms of the test, and you follow those terms. In a marriage, the terms are set by the people in the marriage. Not by melissa, or jack, or any of the other people here who seem to know how other people should run their lives.

      and again, for those who say a vow is a vow. Not all of us took the same vows. You may have been married in a church that tells you what vows to say, but not all of us were. My vows were written with thought and care, and I have not and will not violate them. But I didn' t make promises I couldn't keep. Melissa, how long were the vows in your first marriage? Did you re-negotiate the "till death do us part" section? Or was there a severability clause in there, where his violation of the "I own your gen1tals" clause invalidated the 'death do us part" section?

      May 19, 2011 at 14:57 | Report abuse |
    • Boosh!

      The word "marriage" is defined as more of a contractual relationship rather than being defined as ONE person being with ONE other person for the rest of their lives. If in that relationship contract the couple vows to love, support, and respect one another, etc. 'til death do us part as we all do, then they are contractually obligated to be open minded about any method of saving the marriage. Even if it involves acts that we may not initially be comfortable with. So despite this inability to understand that this article is about doing whatever it takes to save a marriage and talking about all of your options with your spouse, people do and will always have their own opinions (including your own) of marriage. Boosh!

      May 19, 2011 at 15:06 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa's First Husband

      Can you all see why I cheated on this moron?

      May 19, 2011 at 15:07 | Report abuse |
    • @Melissa's First Husband!


      May 19, 2011 at 16:01 | Report abuse |
    • Patrick

      Cheating requires a duplicity, a showing of one face when another is actually true. Technically speaking, if a married couple agree to see other people, it is not cheating in the linguistic, literal or semiotic sense. Check our Webster's.

      May 19, 2011 at 16:57 | Report abuse |
  11. SoS

    You sir are the idiot for thinking your religious beliefs should be followed by everyone on the planet. How about you go get an education and learn some tolerance. Maybe that way the next time you post here you won't make yourself look like a complete fool.

    May 19, 2011 at 12:14 | Report abuse | Reply
    • JB


      You're some piece of work. You open by calling someone an idiot and then go on to preach about tolerance. Nice job. Tolerance most certainly extend to accepting the bad behavior of others, whether it's your own rudeness, or people who can't keep their pants on. What next? You'll want us to be tolerant of the KKK, the Black Panthers, La Raza, the ANP, and other racist organizations? Sorry, I see no reason to be tolerant of that which is wrong.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:26 | Report abuse |
    • kary

      Thank you for this, I was thinking the exact same thing.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:30 | Report abuse |
    • Late the the Party

      Generally, you should ignore older posts when you are late to the party. Had you seen the original post to which that was a response, you might have a better understanding of what was going on. As it is, all you saw was the reply, and I would venture a guess that you don't even know who it was directed to do you?

      May 19, 2011 at 17:35 | Report abuse |
    • SoS

      Well bigots don't usually understand why the rest of the world does not want to be exactly like them. The fact is, YOUR religious beliefs do not dicate how the entire world works. Maybe one day when you grow up, you will understand that.

      May 19, 2011 at 17:37 | Report abuse |
    • SoS

      You tolerate your religious beliefs don't you? Hypocrite.

      May 19, 2011 at 17:50 | Report abuse |
    • Jake

      The Black Panthers weren't racist, they ran programs taking care of kids after school and feeding them before hand. These were kids with parents too poor to buy simple groceries for their kids. Read a book.

      May 19, 2011 at 19:45 | Report abuse |
    • BRETT

      That is what is wrong with this country. Seems like everybody has thrown their bibles down and it collects dust.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:07 | Report abuse |
    • Al

      The bible is a bronze age book that claims that rabbits chew cud. I can't believe that anyone still believes that pap. BTW, how many wives did David have? How about Solomon? The bible is all about poly lifestyles.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:18 | Report abuse |
    • Valerie

      Unfortunately for men, mathmatically there are no where near enough women for all men to have a harem.

      Sure, back in the day kings and sultans had multiple wives but you raverage joe did not- couldn't afford it. Today, men practice in much the same fashion....the rich and powerful get all the woman (all the "good" ones, anyway) and the rest get one.

      Marriage was and is upheld by MEN because that is the ONLY way that ensures most of you get at least ONE woman......I can't believe people are so stupid as to think a man should have multiple wives...you'd all be killing each other just to get a piece if that were the case because if I have to share a man, he isn't going to be some poor, fat nobody. And I am sure most women would agree with me.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:27 | Report abuse |
    • Rbnlegend101

      Valerie. You are right about historical polygamy. When the men can aquire wives and the wives can not aquire additional husbands, you do run into a problem with scarcity. In that situation, the wives are property, and an open market results in a limited number of owners having all the goods on the market. The terms of the marketplace changed, and only a limited few buyers were allowed more than one purchase. Over time, in most societies, that became, one man, one woman.

      This article is not about men gathering harems. It is about negotiating the terms of your relationship with your spouse. I don't know anyone in a relationship where the man is gathering multiple women who are his exclusive property. Usually each partner has one or more outside romantic interests. In a few cases, only one partner is actively dating, at any given time, for a variety of reasons. There's no danger of running out of women, because the women are operating on equal terms as the men. They are not property, they are people.

      I think it's a little sad that you don't have a problem with being the property in this situation, so long as you get to have your owner all to yourself.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:45 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa2

      This makes no sense and has nothing to do with the article. Maybe it was a reply.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:48 | Report abuse |
    • NA

      LOL.. I couldnt agree more! I have no problem ditching monogamy.. my husband does!

      May 19, 2011 at 14:58 | Report abuse |
    • Lila

      I know it was men who created religion, marriage and monogamy(which happily works for many of us) yet the ones who yap on it's unnatural and they are suppose to spread seeds and all that other silliness are men. Acting like women force this on them. Women have never been in power to create these rules in society. Today women have more power than they ever have and will marry the good quality men and dispose of the bad ones. It's easier now than it ever has and it's socially acceptable.

      May 19, 2011 at 16:10 | Report abuse |
    • Neeneko

      You do realize women can do this too?

      May 19, 2011 at 18:32 | Report abuse |
    • Winston

      That has to be the most intelligent comment posted here today :).

      May 19, 2011 at 20:10 | Report abuse |
    • youdontknowme

      I think you've said the most intelligent thing I've seen all day

      May 20, 2011 at 00:31 | Report abuse |
    • youdontknowme

      Let's face it, polygamy was possible in the old days because too many men died of fighting. And it was rather merciful for these women to be taken care of in a family setting. Can you imagine a woman's life without resources back then, like Abraham's wife's handmaid, AFTER she had her "illicit" son?

      May 20, 2011 at 11:13 | Report abuse |
    • Drew

      Your ignorance of the Bible blatantly shows you have no business talking about it as if you are an expert. Yes, Solomon had many wives. And that was his downfall. God was not for it. Please, if you are going to make an argument, make it one that is not so easily shot down. I'm no Bible scholar, and I am able to see how weak it is.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:39 | Report abuse |
    • Al

      Drew, I know a lot more about the bible than you do. God never had a problem with Solomon's wives. You're making that up. You guys never read your book and come to understand what it actually is (a pile of myths).

      May 19, 2011 at 14:44 | Report abuse |
    • z-man

      Soloman had a downfall and it was due to his wives? What a bunch of crap. He was a great Prophet of God and full of wisdom.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:32 | Report abuse |
    • cowboy hat

      Bible is myth: Jesus killed 42 children, 13-and under, with 2 female bears. 2nd Kings chapter 2.

      Angels came to earth... grew...uh something... had bang bang with girls and women... 9 months later...
      a race of GIANTS were born... half human half angel.

      A Dad kills is daughter for "The Lord"... burns her body... spreads blood on the coals.... smoke rises... and
      "tbe aroma is pleasing to Jesus..."

      Need more Bible stories?

      May 19, 2011 at 18:44 | Report abuse |
    • @AL

      Educate yourself: http://www.tektonics.org/af/cudchewers.html

      May 19, 2011 at 14:58 | Report abuse |
    • Al

      I love how you guys torture the text and make excuses for what IT SAYS any time you find it to be in error. You can't just read the bible and accept it or reject it on merits. If it says that rabbits chew cud, it really means something entirely different (educate yourself). If it says that two of every animal fit on a boat that was suspended by water that flooded the entire earth that we have no evidence for but can't prove didn't happen... well, that's literal truth. The tower of bable was not a story about fear, but one about hubris. The story of Job was not god's infantile rage and a bet with his brother, but Job's hubris (Job did in fact ask god why he had done that to him to which god went on a multi chapter tirade " where where YOU when I did this and that... who are YOU to question me who hung the earth on its for pillars...). You guys WANT to believe so you'll do anything you can to protect your belief. It's silly. The bible says that rabbits, along with having hooves, chew cud. It also says that unicorns are real and that god can't defeat men if they are in chariots of iron. It's a collection of Babylonian stories. It's made up, fake and you should stop trusting it.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:04 | Report abuse |
    • Believer

      OK, OK Al – we get it. You don't believe in the complete and inerrant Holy Word of God. We need to "educate ourselves" so we can be smart like you. However, you are grossly guilty of that which people of faith are accused of ever other post – cramming your beliefs down everyone else's throat. But rather than returning the favor, I just prayed that your heart would be softened and that God would use you as an example showing that even those who push Him away with the most force are not beyond His power and His grasp.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:34 | Report abuse |
    • Boosh!

      How's that working out for ya?

      May 19, 2011 at 15:46 | Report abuse |
    • Al

      The "educate yourself" statement was thrown back at one of your believer friends who said that to me. And, telling me that you're praying for me is the christian way of saying, "I'm so much better than you and hope that one day you'll come to realize the same." It's the universal religious f you.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:49 | Report abuse |
    • Thoughtfulness

      It is sad that in this day and age there are those that simply cannot agree to disagree. There are on both sides, both "christian" and "atheists" that take everything to the extreme. Some expect Christians to be perfect, unfortunately they can't be...they like everyone else are human. It is their right to believe in what they will and devote their time to it. The same can be said of atheists. It is their choice to believe in nothing but what is in front of them.

      Just as Faith is a difficult road to walk, the same can be said for those that do not practice a religion no matter what its premise.

      There are valid points to be made by both, but being discourteous to one another and one another's beliefs seems a poor way to do so.

      Just a thought for consideration.

      May 19, 2011 at 18:52 | Report abuse |
    • rh

      We have raised our kids in no religion, but we have also raised them to respect religions and religious people, as well as those with no religion. I wish more religious folks would raise their kids that way, and the world would be a better place.

      We are monogamous because we want to maintain our relationship. If we wanted to stop being monogamous, we'd stop living together. Why do people have to lie to themselves?

      There is no value other than financial or insurance to be married. Monogamy is part of treating each other well enough to stay together. If you can put up with being yelled at, hit, your money stolen, your kids treated bad, you can put up with cheating. But all of it is a form of abuse – is it a "mistake" to hit your 5 year old? Is it a "mistake" to steal from your wife's wallet?

      It's all loss of trust, and there's no way to restore trust. It's what you do when no one is looking that makes you a good human being, or a loser who should live by themselves.

      May 19, 2011 at 21:05 | Report abuse |
    • LEB

      We atheists don't believe in "nothing." We just don't believe in supernatural nonsense. Nihilism is the belief that nothing has purpose or value or is knowable, and that morality does not inherently exist. Atheism is the lack of belief that gods and other supernatural phenomenon exist... and that's it. Nihilists can be atheists, but atheists are not all nihilists. It's not the same thing at all, and it would be nice if people would stop confusing the two.

      May 21, 2011 at 02:26 | Report abuse |
    • Al

      And, to be clear, I'm cramming my[[[non-belief]]] and not my belief down everyone's throat – if quoting from your book can be considered "cramming".

      May 19, 2011 at 15:51 | Report abuse |
    • JulioF

      "I'm cramming my[[[non-belief]]] and not my belief down everyone's throat ... " huh?
      Al. Come on. How can you be so narrow minded and closed to the idea that being a non-believer is, in itself, a belief? You are definitely cramming your beliefs down everyone's throats.

      May 19, 2011 at 16:47 | Report abuse |
    • Al

      Lev. 11:6 And the hare, because he cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof; he is unclean unto you

      May 19, 2011 at 15:21 | Report abuse |
    • Otto

      You eat hair?

      May 19, 2011 at 16:26 | Report abuse |
    • albert

      You are quoting irrelevant scripture. A true student of the Bible would recognize and acknowledge that Christians are no longer under the Mosaic law. When Christ came, those laws were done away with.

      May 19, 2011 at 17:39 | Report abuse |
    • mmhmm

      If those days were done away with, then how come Christians have a war on gays? Something that is mentioned in Leviticus, and on that subject, why are we using the old testament to negotiate laws?

      May 20, 2011 at 06:25 | Report abuse |
    • FaithinChrist

      polygamy was allowed in the Old Testatement. It seems that God allowed it to solve some problems in those days. Women by far outnumbered men then, and many were left to their own devices. A man back then would have married several women and took them into this home and provided for them. Solomon had 700 wives and 300 children +-. Was this wrong THEN? No, as the Bible does not condemn it then,. However, the New Testament does condemn multiple wives now. Especially since our soctiey and the world in the New Testament began to improve. Alot of folks don't realize that after Jesus came, some old laws went away (God sent them to war<Jesus says to turn the other cheek) Good question and one that continues today.

      May 20, 2011 at 09:49 | Report abuse |
    • Valerie

      Where is it written women faaar outnumbered men back then? I have never heard or read that.

      And besides, what does it matter? We don't far outnumber men TODAY.

      May 20, 2011 at 12:00 | Report abuse |
    • youdontknowme

      Where in the new Testament does it "condemn" multiple wives?

      May 20, 2011 at 12:07 | Report abuse |
    • Patrick

      Thank the Lord!

      May 19, 2011 at 16:31 | Report abuse |
    • pgangel

      It is so easy to show that the Bible is not true. Example: what language did Adam & Eve speak? How old is the earth? Which is true Islam or Christianity? The list goes on. There are too many conflicts with truth.

      May 19, 2011 at 16:36 | Report abuse |
    • Patrick

      Islam was derived from Christianity as Christianity was derived from Judaism, so it is possible they could all be on the right path.
      Hard to know when the number of paths is infinite, of course.

      May 19, 2011 at 16:48 | Report abuse |
    • jas

      i wonder where you get all this nonsense. Get your knowledge from the learned ones in a classroom so at least you can make educated guesses at least, rather than make assumptions on philosophies

      May 19, 2011 at 17:08 | Report abuse |
    • give it a chance

      Im quite sure Adam and Eve speak no specific language just the one your bible is translated into ;] and in 2 Peter 3:8 "A day to God is 1000 years".

      May 19, 2011 at 16:57 | Report abuse |
    • nwatcher

      none of what you just said proves anything – fact and opinion seem to blur for many people on these posts. One cannot discern the original contents of the article from this nonsense..

      May 19, 2011 at 17:20 | Report abuse |
    • YeahItsMe

      I wish it was everyone too. Maybe some day.

      May 19, 2011 at 20:36 | Report abuse |
    • the coach

      your response is absolutely amazing .... your saying they should learn tolerance and that everyone should not be forced to believe as they do but thats exactly what you are saying ...believe as i believe ... the real narrow mind here is you...

      May 19, 2011 at 14:55 | Report abuse |
    • earthling

      Well then you want him to believe that he is being intolerant just like he's accusing others of doing. So want others to believe the way you believe. Not very tolerant.

      May 19, 2011 at 20:08 | Report abuse |
  12. CK

    Negotiated monogamy? Give me a break, just another way for mainly men to have their cake and eat it too...and any woman that agrees to this should get her head examined. If my husband came up to me and brought up this subject, it would be over. If you want to sleep with someone outside the marriage, the vows go out the window and no longer mean anything!

    May 19, 2011 at 12:20 | Report abuse | Reply
    • SoS

      I like how you try to make this a male issue. The fact is, plenty of studies show that women cheat just as often as men do. Nice try though.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:23 | Report abuse |
    • Valerie

      Ironically enough, it would actually benefit women to be able to mess aorund than it would men. Women would have a faaaaaaaaaar easier time getting extra on the side no strings attached- if they wanted.....

      The reality is, the men now who get "all the women" (the "good" ones, anyway) would be the SAME men getting all the women...........so, your average joe guy would be back to square one, of course now he would be sitting by himself while wifey is out getting some from the hispanic guy down the street................

      May 19, 2011 at 12:24 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa

      I'm with you on this one.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:26 | Report abuse |
    • Rbnlegend101

      Every man who cheats, is cheating with another person (usually a woman), and that other person is usually cheating too. Turning it into men-bad women-good is just another trip to fantasy land.

      The idea that women have it easier is yet another myth that you find out isn't entirely true when you get out in the real world. Sure, young women who look like models and are eager to degrade themselves with guys they meet in bars do have it easy. Again, in the real world, the situation is more complex.

      When you view life through the lens of a 1970's sitcom, it's all so simple.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:45 | Report abuse |
    • SoS

      Indeed, the man haters are starting to rear their ugly heads.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:57 | Report abuse |
    • Michelle

      Oh give me a break. I've known plenty of women who cheat. Happens all the time. I also know plenty of women who are polyamorous. Congratulation on LIMITING women by your own prudish standards.

      May 19, 2011 at 12:59 | Report abuse |
    • polyimperfect

      Just fyi I'm 100% female and I would never again enter into a relationship under the premise of monogamy. Nor do I have any interest whatsoever in random hookups, swinging, or casual encounters of any kind. The only relationships I want are close, trusting, honest, loving, intimate, long-term. I just happen to prefer 2-3 at a time instead of 1. I can happily be monogamous if I'm not dating anyone else at the time, but that occurs only by chance, not by decree.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:21 | Report abuse |
    • Mama2KOA

      Why are you blaming this on men? "just another way for mainly men to have their cake and eat it too...and any woman that agrees to this should get her head examined." I realize that you said "mainly men" but still, some women crave and enjoy an open marriage.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:44 | Report abuse |
    • Denil

      @rbnLegend : I couldn't agree more. If the woman he is cheating with is a single, then she is a homewrecker.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:02 | Report abuse |
    • Jason

      So you've never wanted to play around with another guy but only love your husband, I take it. Ever.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:47 | Report abuse |
  13. john

    The promise of fidelity is an device to not deal with the partner's own lack of self-esteem. Jealousy is simply an symptom of that lack of confidence in one's own attractiveness and value. With compassion and truthfulness, healthy relationships should survive lack of strict monogamy. If one has a problem with this, one should honestly look inside.

    May 19, 2011 at 12:41 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Valerie

      Wow, remember that wonderful insight once Tyrone the garbage man has given your wife her weekly once over.......

      May 19, 2011 at 12:45 | Report abuse |
    • Rbnlegend101

      When you don't have any good arguement, go for insulting and crude. It makes you feel better and that is all that counts. not other people, not your spouse, and not the garbage man (interesting name choice, BTW, racist much?).

      May 19, 2011 at 13:21 | Report abuse |
    • had to write

      Actually, fidelity is not about insecurity. Fidelity, before birth control, finds its roots in a desire not to raise another's child. If your wife cheated, you raised another's child and your bloodline was frayed. That is where fidelity comes from.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:50 | Report abuse |
    • Valerie

      I see I hit a chord there with my little visual in your head........admit it, it would pizz you off if your wife was doing that....you my dear are the racist.......I wasn't being crude either....I was bringing up a hypothetical situation that made you mad just THINKING about it...........LOL!

      May 19, 2011 at 13:51 | Report abuse |
    • D

      I think the thing that would bother me if I were to do this is: what if Tyrone (as an example) had a much better connection with me in bed than my "monogamous" partner? You would never know until you tried. I think that would mess with my head quite a bit.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:54 | Report abuse |
    • Rbnlegend101

      No, it wouldn't make me mad. I don't have a problem with garbagemen named Tyrone. Try again. You will have to work harder than that. I've been married for over a decade, known my wife for over a quarter of a century, and we've been places and done things you can't imagine. You will have to come up with something completely different to get me angry. If you are trying to make the point that you know better than me how to handle my own marriage, you couldn't be more wrong. But I'm sure it makes you feel better, so, enjoy your wallow. But, would your husband approve of your fantasy of my wife and Tyronne?

      May 19, 2011 at 15:02 | Report abuse |
  14. deanna

    This man should NOT be a counselor.

    May 19, 2011 at 12:50 | Report abuse | Reply
    • polyimperfect

      Why, cause he asks you to talk to your partner? lol yeah that's a pretty scary and irresponsible concept...

      May 19, 2011 at 13:25 | Report abuse |
    • Jason

      Thanks for the opinion. I think he's great.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:48 | Report abuse |
  15. N. Panter

    One night, while I was still living in Los Angeles, I had dinner with an ultra liberal and the discussion of monogamy came up. His angel was that "society has programmed us believe that we should only be with one man or one woman for the rest of our lives, but that isnt human nature." – I have found over the past couple of years that this is a common tag line for people who share this belief. But if thats the case then why dont we go back to the days where men would club a woman over the head and drag her back to his cave? After all thats the primitive male would do... Why do we bother brushing our teeth in the mornings or washing our clothes, or shaving our bodies, cooking raw meat? Primitive people didnt do these things, it wasnt in their nature.. Reason being is, we have evolved, we're more civilized. So, if you dont want to commit to what marriage actually is, then dont... be single, have all the boyfriend or girlfriends that you want. Marriage is what is it, dont come into it trying to manipulate it into something its not and do us ALL one favor... don't pretend we have all been "programmed" just because you cant conform to a more civilized behavior....

    May 19, 2011 at 12:51 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Heh

      See, that view makes sense when there is no concept of property. Once the notion of property enters the human equation, then marriage and monogamy make perfect sense. However, those people seek to obliterate property, or at least the property of others, so getting people to buy in to the human as restraint-free hump monkey concept feeds their broader goals.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:09 | Report abuse |
    • Big Walt

      I don't see this being about having one partner forever. What the author is talking about is couples who are having issues with xes. If you can't have xes with each other, for whatever the reason may be, why not discuss having different partners. He's not saying no one can be monogamous so we should just all have open marriages. It's kind of a last resort before the xeslessness in the marriage destroys it.

      (how are they going to have articles about xes and not let us use the word in comments?)

      May 19, 2011 at 13:39 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa

      I'm a liberal. Everything you just said is crap.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:43 | Report abuse |
    • Milton Platt

      I don't think we have any material evidence of anyone being clubbed on the head and dragged to a cave. In fact, we have very little evidence concerning "primitive" man at all, much less to support your claims.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:53 | Report abuse |
    • Bill

      An inventive and well executed argument! Congrats!

      May 19, 2011 at 13:54 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa2

      It has nothing to do with political party. If it did, then why does Schwartzenegger have a 13 year old love child? Duh! Seems like it's okay as long as it's a republican. Typical dumb hypocritical republican.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:44 | Report abuse |
    • Jason

      FYI I stopped reading after you compared an open relationship with clubbing women over the head.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:49 | Report abuse |
  16. Nina

    I am SO glad I am NOT Ian Kerner's wife. Poor thing. How embarrassing. It's very simple. Don't get married if you don't want to remain faithful.

    May 19, 2011 at 12:51 | Report abuse | Reply
    • polyimperfect

      What about all those loving, faithful, monogamous couples who desperately *want* to get married but are not *allowed* to because the religious fundies have decided only one combination of a certain number of genitalia deserves legal and financial protection? Once gays are free to marry, and non-married individuals are free to decide who they want to have visit them in the ER when they have 10 minutes to live, will this be worth arguing.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:24 | Report abuse |
    • Edsr

      Also if you don't want HIV or herpes or several other exotic diseases.................I kind of feel that Michelle may be an expert on diseases..........................

      May 19, 2011 at 16:38 | Report abuse |
  17. JQP

    It is sooooo easy for all the holier than thou folks to say, "don't get married if you cannot handle monogamy" but come on does anyone really know what they will be like when they are 30, 40, 50+ but choose to get married at 20 something. But now there are kids, bills, families to consider and as we all know a team is stronger than an individual. So if ALL else is going well and everyone can get a long and enjoy each others company BUT there is an issue of "monogamy", I say think outside the box. As a child of divorced parents, behind the scenes "Negotiated Monogamy" would have been preferred over 60+/-% of my time with Mom and 40+/-% of my time with Dad and I never knew if I was coming or going. When I was with Mom I missed Dad and when I was with Dad I missed Mom. So for all you hollier than thou folks, divorce is no picnic either, so if something such as "negotiated monogamy" can keep a Mom and Dad under the same room until kids become adults, it should be considered.

    May 19, 2011 at 13:11 | Report abuse | Reply
    • N. Panter

      Ahh, the "holier than thou" approach. "Holier than thou" for making time to go to the gym, "Holier than thou" for eating right... "Holier than thou" for not being in debt... "Holier than thou" for working extra hard on things I believe in... Listen, trying to undermine people who have handled situations better than you have isnt the way to make things better for yourself. Two people who are living in a house for "the kids sake" have simply just given up. They've admitted they're done trying and are just in it for the kids... There is no law saying you cant get divorced and still live in the same house together. In fact, I think that would be an even more genuine way to see who REALLY IS in it for the kids... "Will he/she leave after shes got half of everything?"

      May 19, 2011 at 13:38 | Report abuse |
    • JQP

      @ N Panter:
      Mother / Father want to get divorced but get a long, take vacations together, choose to continue to live under the same roof for the kids and be a "quasi" family would have still been preferred over not knowing if I was coming or going. Being treked back and forth between homes. Never really feeling like either was truly home.

      "Hollier than thou" is right because people have tolerated less than desiarable situations for far less good reasons than the love they have for their kids so I will state again one household with NO physical or drug/alcohol abuse is preferrable over two separate households on the kids. So again if Mom/Dad under one roof concept can be maintained due to "thinking outside the box" until kids become adults it should be considered.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:14 | Report abuse |
    • Rbnlegend101

      Actually, Panter, it depends on what state you live in. In several states, you can not get a divorce if you live in the same residence. You have to seperate for a period of time before you get divorced. Sleep on the sofa for one night and that clock resets. You could move in together after the divorce is legal, if the terms of the divorce and any custody agreements allow that.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:06 | Report abuse |
  18. Tea

    Very few people have regard for Gods Laws. Remember God anyone? So many compromise there morals because the rest of the world does it. Its so sad and selfish. The Bible did say that men will be lovers of themselves and will do according to there own will. Why you think that STD's and Aids is so prevelent because of this very thing. To each its own thought but trust that when the great day of God comes many will regret there decisions to live a life away from God.

    May 19, 2011 at 13:25 | Report abuse | Reply
    • yari

      God is dead.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:35 | Report abuse |
    • Michelle

      God is a concept and it is in your head.. some morons are waiting for May 21st doomsday!.. i enjoy my moment with my bf and yes its different and its adventurous and both of us enjoy it!! Men will cheat they are born to do that.. so then why live like a hypocrite.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:35 | Report abuse |
    • TCruise

      "Why you think that STD's and Aids is so prevelent because of this very thing" – Use condoms..lol

      May 19, 2011 at 13:37 | Report abuse |
    • CFB

      Umm, didn't "God's Laws" also say that when you massacred another tribe you could take the virgins for yourself?. (Numbers 31:17). Sort of gets you to the same result, doesn't it. That and the polygamy (Deuteronomy 21:15) of course...

      May 19, 2011 at 13:41 | Report abuse |
    • TCruise

      "The Bible did say that men will be lovers of themselves" – means they masterbate.. read the word self!!.. like as if you don't ha ha!

      May 19, 2011 at 13:43 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa

      There is no god.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:45 | Report abuse |
    • David in Corpus

      I hate your god and all the other ones too.
      Which one is yours by the way?
      the eight armed btch? the dude with horns on his head? the lady with a skirt made out of rattlesnakes wearing a necklace of hearts and hands, the dude who was turned into a zombie and hung out with 12 men instead of 12 women?, the fat guy in all the chinese restaurants who looks like he is on a really pleasant acid trip? which one is yours? I hate them all personally.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:53 | Report abuse |
    • C Men

      Tea, I hope you don't wear mixed fabrics or get haircuts ever. Surely you follow all of God's laws and not just the ones that are convenient for you.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:58 | Report abuse |
    • TheOtherSIde

      You are almost as much an atheist as I am......I just believe in one less god than you do.

      Think you're not an atheist? I'm willing to bet you don't believe in and/or pray to Zeus, Apollo, Ra, etc., etc. And why don't you? Because those are childrens' stories and myths, right? "When you understand why it is that you don't believe in those gods, you will understand why it is I do not believe in yours."

      There is NO universal definition of marriage. A marriage is whatever the participants make of it.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:17 | Report abuse |
    • Drew

      "The fool saith in his heart there is no God"

      Lots of fools in here...

      May 19, 2011 at 14:41 | Report abuse |
    • john

      Im think that day is this Sat. according to fervent God-whorshippers. If the day of rapture is not this Sat. then so much for your Bible and God references. Try another crutch.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:08 | Report abuse |
    • C Men

      "If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her."

      Oh, no, it works against you too....

      May 19, 2011 at 15:10 | Report abuse |
    • Jason

      TImothy 2:12 I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:34 | Report abuse |
    • Zah

      @Michelle "men will cheat, they were born to do that" That is what makes marriage so special and awesome. We are putting aside our natural inclinations to cheat to follow a vow we made to one person!! DUHH

      May 19, 2011 at 17:35 | Report abuse |
    • C Men

      It's almost too easy to get the religious nut jobs (not saying all religious people are nut jobs mind you) to shut up.

      May 20, 2011 at 10:08 | Report abuse |
  19. Unowhome

    Here is something women need to consider! Maybe you shouldn't get married if you can't give a man what he needs on a regular schedule! Women need 1000 different things from a man but some men really only needs a few things from a woman and if we don't get that we become very reckless at times. Do u really think your husband wants to hear u talk about work & girlfriends for an hour or more everyday? NO, but we do because that's what some women need! Stop trying to get something from men without giving up something and u want end up divorced and by yourself at age 55!

    May 19, 2011 at 13:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. Hajababa

    Just do it in the butt, that's not technically cheating

    May 19, 2011 at 13:26 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Jaba Baba Jaba

      But doing in the butt is cheating....isn't it?

      May 19, 2011 at 13:29 | Report abuse |
    • Bob

      I say if your wife won't let you do her in the butt she should let you do it with someone else. Anything I won't do with her she's welcome to find another guy to take my place. Like say going to the mall.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:33 | Report abuse |
  21. lesley

    this is so stupid. this is just an excuse so men and women can sleep with whoever they want. what happened with being in love with someone and only wanting them.

    May 19, 2011 at 13:29 | Report abuse | Reply
    • C Men

      Read the article moron.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:34 | Report abuse |
    • polyimperfect

      Being in love with someone, and wanting ONLY them, are two entirely different concepts. Hollywood sells us the fairy tale of one true love, but most people over the age of 25 have figured out that's a load of b.s. they just use to sell movies.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:35 | Report abuse |
    • Christina

      "what happened with being in love with someone and only wanting them."

      um, that was always a fairy tale.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:23 | Report abuse |
  22. Women Sux

    All women cry like little baby girls, all little baby girls are evil, so women are evil

    May 19, 2011 at 13:31 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. frank

    My ex-wife and My ex-fiancée tried to get me into an open marriage. They was quite sneaky about it, too. All they wanted was their special male friends! Overnight! The thought of what they did and what they tried makes my blood boil to this day, years later.

    May 19, 2011 at 13:32 | Report abuse | Reply
    • yari

      Ok, so it isn't for you. Go find yourself a girl like Melissa. The rest of us who can be flexible will continue to seek each other out as well. See how nicely that works?

      May 19, 2011 at 13:39 | Report abuse |
    • polyimperfect

      Deception and lies and subterfuge have no place in truly open relationships, and I'm sorry you got badly hurt, Frank. It sounds like they had no idea what they were doing. The whole point of open is...OPEN! That means consensual, honest, compassionate, truthful, caring, careful relationships that only go according to everyone's comfort level and with care and concern and support for everyone involved. Please don't take that as representative of what open relationships are about.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:39 | Report abuse |
  24. KK

    Jack is a freaking republican who was kicked out of school because of his stupidity and almost zero intelligence. To take a revenge, just like an astute republican, he got his degree in TALK LOUD and TALK NONSENSE. Enough said about this moron.

    May 19, 2011 at 13:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. MAU

    To BAM. The Creator of heavens and earths and you and me and everything in this universe. Who gave you the ability to question His existence? Where were you before you were born? Who created you from a drop of water into a perfect human being.

    Polygamy is the answer, sooner or later.

    May 19, 2011 at 13:37 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. Willy

    "s e x with anyone else ever again. Wow – just writing that is scary". Not to me s e x with anyone else ever again. Wow – just writing that is soothing. Guess this not married guy who wrote the article never heard of S T Ds.

    May 19, 2011 at 13:38 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Al

      Been with many, many women... still ST D free. It's really not hard to stay clean and have fun.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:14 | Report abuse |
    • Willy

      Ok. Maybe your wife is good with that then. But you would have to add " as far as you know".

      May 19, 2011 at 17:05 | Report abuse |
  27. Rose

    First of all, I am not relgious. I also believe that gay people should have the same exact rights that straight people.

    People say that it's normal for men to want to "spread their seeds." However, if it was so natural and healthy for men to do so, than why are there s t d's? There are more all the time. For example, H P V was not very common 20 years ago. S T D's can even cause cancer. What's so healthy about that? Yes, you could use protection, but condoms aren't natural.

    May 19, 2011 at 13:42 | Report abuse | Reply
    • polyimperfect

      er, Rose, I hate to disabuse you of the notion that everything "natural" is good...but the deadliest poisons on earth come from all natural sources. Water is natural and you can drown in it. Death is natural. STDs are natural. The computer you're typing on and the clothes you are wearing are unnatural.

      May 19, 2011 at 13:47 | Report abuse |
  28. MrX

    I believe that marriage is what works for the couple and not what society dictates. So, yes, in some cases opem marriages work and in some cases they do not. The fact is that people need to communicate throughout their marriage and keep an open mind.

    Many of us get married under the assumption that marriage is some fairy tale, and it is not. It doesn't mean that it will not be good, but we must understand that marriage is organic...it changes..evolves...and couples must do the same, otherwise it comes to an end.

    May 19, 2011 at 13:44 | Report abuse | Reply
    • LEB

      Nicely put. I also dislike it when people say marriage is "hard," because it's not hard. It's just something that requires effort. Yes, you should love your spouse all the time... but you're not necessarily going to *like* your spouse every second of every day. Nor are you going to be head-over-heels-in-love every second, or please-please-take-me-now in lust every second. There are highs and lows, and when there are lows, it may take some work to bring it all back together again. But if you've chosen the right person to marry, the payoff is more than worth the effort!

      May 21, 2011 at 02:32 | Report abuse |
  29. abulkheas

    Wow, but why we are so surprized when the holy Quraan said it 1400 years ago. that is why in Islam a man can marry upto 4 wives at a time ,not more than four. It has a wisdon in it for those who open thier brain,not for those blind hate mongers. The age of Sharreya is in the corner... hashahaha...

    May 19, 2011 at 13:45 | Report abuse | Reply
    • David in Corpus

      I have a slab of bacon and pig blood covered bullets waiting to send you to Allah (translation in Texan = camelfkr) Texas style homie.
      Come for my wife and daughter, see how far that gets you.
      Here in America, at least to me and many others, the women are equals and very valuable to us in so many ways.
      Keep your culture overseas where it belongs and I will do the same.
      I have no interest in those heavily veiled camelgirls of yours anyway... oh and I ain't too fond of mud huts and BO either.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:17 | Report abuse |
  30. knarf55

    Question? Why get married and commit to someone if you are still chasing/looking/gawking and have no intentions of being faithful??? Stay ur ass SINGLE and not answer to anyone...I'm sure later in life, you'll want to be with one person because you realized you had enough of worthless/meaniless realationships. I think when your older more wiser you'll find that it would be better to grow old with someone that has the same values and is also fat up with the dating crap... My opinion only...

    May 19, 2011 at 13:46 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. thedude

    If any of these ladies on here are in an open relationship and want to have some fun let me know. I love new trim

    May 19, 2011 at 13:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. scrumbug

    What is with all this "men will cheat" crap? This is on both sides people.

    Here's a list of well known cheating women:
    Whoopi Goldberg
    Meg Ryan
    LeAnn Rimes
    Tori Spelling
    Jessica Simpson
    Anne Heche
    Gabrielle Union
    Ingrid Bergman
    Elizabeth Taylor

    May 19, 2011 at 13:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. Anthony


    Anthony Kraudelt
    4820 Rands Road
    Bloomfield Hills, MI 48302

    May 19, 2011 at 13:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. John

    This is BS who wants there woman pounded on by some dude and then get sloppy seconds. Your a nasty B****** if thats you. Marriage is a GOD thing no for you atheist you have Civil Unions so go on. Marriage is about 2 people not 3 or 4 or 10. If thats what you want then do you Civil Union thing and move on. Quit tell the church they have to accept what you want them to accept. God made marriage so F*** OFF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    May 19, 2011 at 13:56 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Al

      LOL. I got a marriage license from the state. God had nothing to say about it at all.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:05 | Report abuse |
    • thedude

      @john yo man....unless your wife/girlfriend was/is a virgin you already got sloppy seconds.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:05 | Report abuse |
    • Valerie

      Al- that is a civil union then. You don't even know what John is talking about. You are legally married by MAN in a civil union, you aren't married in a holy Sacrament. Your comment made you look stupid.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:30 | Report abuse |
    • C Men

      Valerie, first of all, no he didn't look stupid, he's absolutely correct. Second, get back in the kitchen and make me a pot pie bi tch!

      May 19, 2011 at 14:40 | Report abuse |
    • Al

      @valarie, I love how you decide that I had a "civil ceremony" when I in fact had a marriage. You don't get to define and own the term that is SECULAR and STATE SPONSORED. The state does not have a box for "marriage" or "civil union". I got a MARRIAGE license. Marriage existed long before your silly book and mythology. And, calling people stupid does not reflect well on you or your intellectual prowess.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:46 | Report abuse |
    • Boosh!

      "God made marriage so eff off"...hahaha how pleasantly christian of you. Just because you were in a building with a steeple getting talked to by a guy in a robe doesn't mean God signed off on your marriage. In fact I bet your license has at least one state office symbol or even state appointed official's signature on it. I don't believe you have God's signature anywhere on it.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:17 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa2

      Wow John. I guess this is why people think teachers are not doing their job. It was the rant of a wacko!

      May 19, 2011 at 15:20 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa2

      Valerie: You either aren't married and are one of these women that fantasize about that perfect marriage, you know, the one that doesn't exist?
      Or you are a married and are miserable. There is no other reason for you to care so deeply about what people call their relationship (marriage or civil union) unless yours is falling apart. Emotionally happy people don't get this wrapped up in other people's business.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:24 | Report abuse |
    • Rbnlegend101

      So now, in addition to telling me how to run my marriage, you are telling my minister that she did it wrong when she conducted our wedding ceremony? It must be rough being right about everything when people all around you are wrong all the time.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:28 | Report abuse |
    • Jason

      Yes I'm a nasty B******. Get over it.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:51 | Report abuse |
    • Jenny

      "God made marriage so F*** OFF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

      Wow! Such beautiful, "Christian" language! Your God must be so proud to have you as his champion – well done 🙂

      May 19, 2011 at 19:04 | Report abuse |
    • LEB

      If the Christian God made marriage, then why to atheists have lower divorce rates than almost every Christian denomination? Evangelicals in particular can't seem to get it right, with the highest divorce rates of all! I guess being "born again" doesn't help you in the marriage department.

      May 21, 2011 at 02:37 | Report abuse |
  35. DG

    Saying it's not cheating if you get permission is like saying it's not murder if the person asks you to kill them. Good luck with that defense in front of the judge.

    May 19, 2011 at 13:57 | Report abuse | Reply
    • polyimperfect

      Actually, DG, that would be assisted suicide. Big difference.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:27 | Report abuse |
    • SoS

      You didn't do too well in school did you DG?

      May 19, 2011 at 17:40 | Report abuse |
  36. BRETT

    All of people who cheat on their spouse will probably go to hell. It is biblical to never cheat on your spouse.

    May 19, 2011 at 13:59 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Al

      At least I've got that going for me.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:07 | Report abuse |
    • Rbnlegend101

      I had a cheeseburger for lunch, my slacks are a poly/cotton blend, and I shaved my face this morning. I am pretty much doomed anyway.

      Oh, and I have been known to dance.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:30 | Report abuse |
    • di

      Well I will be going their anyway, why not go out the a smile on my face.......

      May 19, 2011 at 16:01 | Report abuse |
    • TTLG

      I welcom it!!!

      May 20, 2011 at 05:03 | Report abuse |
    • TTLG

      I mean "I welcome it"

      May 20, 2011 at 05:04 | Report abuse |
  37. Paul NYC

    I know people who have open marriages or poly relationships and do well with them. The only problem is when it's more open for one that the other - i.e. When one partner gets more action than the other. Then the jealousy kicks in big time.

    May 19, 2011 at 14:00 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Sarah

      Totally... you have to be completely open about it and if one person is feeling less open than the other, it's time to have "a talk" and figure it out. Then again, I'm less out there than my partner and I don't feel anything wrong with it. He comes home to me every night and I never feel neglected.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:14 | Report abuse |
    • C Men

      I travel for work. The whole don't ask, don't tell works fine for us. We trust each other to be safe which is all that matters.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:42 | Report abuse |
    • Sarah

      I'm not sure I couldn't ask and couldn't tell. Everyone's different in their relationship, but prior to us being together we both lived in SO much shame of ourselves that I think it would feel we were still hiding if we didn't at least talk to one another about it. We're built very much on the no secrets concepts. That and we kinda feed off the details a little which adds to our passion together. lol, TMI

      May 19, 2011 at 15:57 | Report abuse |
  38. anonymous

    Wow. This man is a therapist and actually instigating for couples to try out the idea of cheating within their marriages to "save" the marriage?! This is what's wrong with today's society. The acceptance of immoral behavior. If you can't keep it in your pants, then by all means, don't get married!

    May 19, 2011 at 14:01 | Report abuse | Reply
    • nonamedave

      They're probably getting divorced anyway! Why not try one last ditch effort to save it? It's not like he's saying if you just got married and you're perfectly happy you should start having an open marriage. Man, reading comprehension of the commentors on here is atrocious.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:45 | Report abuse |
    • Rbnlegend101

      Next time, read for comprehension. That's not at all what he is suggesting. He is suggesting you talk to your partner about what you really want, and what is really acceptable in your relationship. Talking isn't cheating. Cheating is breaking rules, and in a marriage, the people who set the rules are the people in the marriage.

      Here's the thing that will drive you nuts. Right now, all across the country, people are doing exactly what he says. In happy, lasting marriages, it happens. Every day, in every city and town. We don't show you, because, well, look at how some of you react, but it's out there, and while it's not everyone, it's not so rare as you think it is.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:38 | Report abuse |
    • TTLG

      "Man, reading comprehension of the commentors on here is atrocious."
      I agree with that statement.

      May 20, 2011 at 05:08 | Report abuse |
  39. Swinger

    This is why the Swing Lifestyle works so well. Open Marriage is the only way to go.

    May 19, 2011 at 14:01 | Report abuse | Reply
    • BRETT

      You are an idiot!

      May 19, 2011 at 14:11 | Report abuse |
    • Jason

      For those that like it it works well, yeah.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:56 | Report abuse |
    • LEB

      The only way to go if you want STDs, jealousy, drama, and some crazy woman demanding child support from your husband for a 5-year old son he didn't know he had....

      May 21, 2011 at 02:39 | Report abuse |
  40. Kallen

    This is why 50% of all marriages are failing. People don't look to their spouse for advice and the companionship that marriage gives one another. Instead they go sleep with someone else which makes the void in their lives even bigger. If you are still chasing others maybe you shouldn't get married. Marriage is a committment to one person..no negotiations! What a disgusting article.

    May 19, 2011 at 14:02 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Rbnlegend101

      No, marriages are failing because people view them rigidly, and rather than communicate with their spouse, they hide and deny until they can't deal with it any more. Then they simply terminate the marriage and move on, in hopes of finding some perfect someone who will be just what they want, forever. marriages end because of fear. Fear that if their mate enjoys s3x or romance with someone else, that the love they share will somehow be diminished or replaced by that other person's beauty, or s3xual skills. They suffer in safe silence, until the suffering overwhelms the safety, and the marriage fails. There was a time, between "I do" and "sign the papers so we don't ever have to talk again" when they could have communicated and fixed their relationship, but they didn't. Sometimes that missing communication was about s3x, or money, or housework, or about not saying "I l0ve you" enough, or yelling at the kids, or walking the dog, or drinking milk right out of the carton. Talking honestly is hard, and many people skip it.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:44 | Report abuse |
    • Jenny

      Marriages fail because people stop talking to each other and if you could go back and read the article again and try to be a little less judgemental you might realize that that is really what the author is talking about. Sometimes being able to talk about your attraction to someone else and not being judged or condemned for it is all a person needs. More marriages would succeed if people were more able to be honest and forgiving.

      May 19, 2011 at 19:10 | Report abuse |
  41. librababy

    If you are going to decide to negotiate monogamy then why bother being married at all? Maybe if people put a little more thought into the person they were marrying we wouldn't see the statistics that we are seeing. I have had several failed relationships, not one of them being a marriage because I was able to see that I was not willing to spend my life with that individual for whatever reason. Half the time people seem to put more thought into what kind of TV to buy than who their lifelong partner should be.

    May 19, 2011 at 14:05 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. Nancy

    Jack, You are gross, disgusting, and perverted.

    May 19, 2011 at 14:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. thedude

    Hmmmmm this article is making me h0rney

    May 19, 2011 at 14:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. remy730

    Take a bow, doc. You just complicated marriage. How about just not be married if there is a major problem like this.

    May 19, 2011 at 14:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. Melissa's Husband

    I'm cheating in you!

    May 19, 2011 at 14:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. DJ

    Define faithful. Define adultery. I think many people define these words differently. But to get to the point of it – If two consenting adults decide to practice an open marriage but still come home to one another at the end of the night, raise a family together, and love each other dearly, then where is the problem? It's their personal, private choice that they have made as a couple. The end.

    May 19, 2011 at 14:19 | Report abuse | Reply
    • di

      Totally – feel the same way... If it works – then go with it!!!!

      May 19, 2011 at 16:05 | Report abuse |
  47. Melissa's Husband

    Sorry... that's *on you... Hard to type with one hand on your sisters head.

    May 19, 2011 at 14:19 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Melissa's Sister

      irsj ejjsy jr dsof@!@

      May 20, 2011 at 10:12 | Report abuse |
    • Melissa's Sister

      Oops, that was supposed to be yeah, what he said. It's hard to type while blowing your sister's husband.

      May 20, 2011 at 10:13 | Report abuse |
  48. Al

    I've done it both ways. I converted my christian wife to a swinger (have had FMF and MFM – no M to M touching 🙂 – switch hitting...) and then into a straight-up open marriage. I wound up divorced after 15 years of marriage – but in excellent shape. I've also had affairs (I've "cheated" on pretty much every women I've ever been with many times). Honestly, I think that secret affairs, if you do it right, are better for everyone. I'm going to stray (perhaps she is too). Nothing anyone can do about it. I don't do it to hurt the woman I'm with. I do it for my own gratification and because I am biologically driven to do so and I'm not willing to deny my biological urges and because new s e x with a new woman is amazing. I don't care who that offends or what you think of me. For those of you are are at this cross roads, I highly suggest that you take matters into your own hands, keep a good perspective (you're not going to find someone better – just someone new – so don't be thinking this is an exit strategy) and have affairs. That's the natural order of things and the best way to ensure no one gets hurt. It's not the affair that hurts your partner. It is knowing about the affair that hurts your partner...

    Flame away!

    May 19, 2011 at 14:19 | Report abuse | Reply
    • thedude

      Straight up honest and to the point. I agree with you 100%. Only problem is I would never want to hurt my wife which is why I could never do it. As much as I would like to have fun and as awesome as that new s e x is I am always afraid of hurting my wife so I choose not to. If she ever wants to bring another woman into the bedroom though...I am all for it!

      May 19, 2011 at 14:24 | Report abuse |
    • Al

      @thedude... yep. I totally understand. I don't want to hurt my SO either. I tip toe around the open-relationship question from time to time. She's not budging and I like it the way it is anyway. But, I can totally understand your point. It's a risk vs reward thing. If you are at all worried about hurting her, you can't do it. I have a system now. I know how to get into it and out of it it and how to spot the crazies or the ones who are going to get attached. If you are not careful, you can wind up with an exasperated, drunk ex lover sitting in your driveway... Play it safe if you have any fear and you feel the risk outweighs the reward. But, if it all does stay secret and if everyone is mature, no one gets hurt and everyone gets what they want.

      PS: I'm also a member of the Dudeism religion. 🙂

      May 19, 2011 at 14:31 | Report abuse |
    • D

      @Al What if you ever found someone who was physically a much better fit than your wife? Would that bother you in any way that you had to go back to the inferior goods, to put it crudely? I am also curious as to what caused the demise of your first marriage. A lot of men would think you were living the dream with that wife.

      May 19, 2011 at 15:21 | Report abuse |
    • Al

      @D, I'd have to say that the demise of my first marriage was due to my misunderstanding of women. I did a lot of study of women – I've never had a problem getting women but knowing how to handle them long term takes certain skills. In fact, the things you do early on to get them work great for getting them but if you don't switch it up, the male becomes bored, she becomes fed up and she'll (rightfully) feel like she does not have a connection to you. If I had that part to do over, I would. And, while the open-marriage played into everything, it was certainly not the primary cause of the divorce. I do not worry that I'm going to find someone more attractive. I am never with women I don't feel are attractive. I have great s e x with my wife and she's s e x y as can be. I'm not looking for better...

      May 19, 2011 at 15:36 | Report abuse |
    • rh

      This "swinger" thing smells of misogyny. Swinging – okay, yes some women go for that. Okay, now we get the "no M-M touching", well maybe she is bi and you ain't. Now we have that you didn't know how to "handle women" in your first marriage.

      If your mom or dad would have taught you that women are human beings, maybe you wouldn't have chosen swinging. Whether or not you are a swinger, you are a pig and misogynist in my book. Sleeping with different women while married doesn't make you a pig, but denigrating women as sub-humans does.

      Make sure you put that on your description for your swinger events, I'm sure it will attract the ladies.

      May 19, 2011 at 21:25 | Report abuse |

      ~~~~~~~ I don't think I have ever wanted to meet a random stranger as bad as I would love to meet you. And please don't get all railed up on this... I would love to meet you and beat the living life out of you.

      You are beyond ruthless. But I actually feels sorry for you, because without a PHD I can tell you you need extensive and intensive therapy. We aren't biologically driven to do anything with exception of things we actually need to survive (air,water, food,shelter)
      You sound like a desperate Addict that claims he cant go on without his drugs. Its all in your head and chances are your penis has nothing to do with it. You might be high headed but if you were more content with your life you would have a good shoulder over your head.
      I think you should consider getting some help.. You can do anything you set your mind to do. And seems like you are dead set on being a d-bag.

      May 23, 2011 at 21:24 | Report abuse |
  49. Rick

    Just my opinion.... if marriage comes to "negotiating monogamy"... it is time to NOT be married. I'm just plain under the opinion that if you cannot be faithful to your partner you haven't any business being married. SOONER or later someone is going to get hurt. If you want to pluck someone else... have the decency to leave first.

    May 19, 2011 at 14:19 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Rbnlegend101

      Sooner or later someone is going to get hurt. Maybe. Maybe not. But you think it's better to go for divorce first, just in case, because that is painless?

      May 19, 2011 at 15:49 | Report abuse |
    • rh

      I know someone who was murdered because she was cheating on her husband and wanted to end it, and the boyfriend didn't agree. Not only was her husband completely floored (his love for her blinded him to her cheating, she would go "out with the girls" on Friday nights until all hours), but her two children were scarred for life.

      PLEASE people, don't cheat, get divorced first. Your children will thank you for it, as will your spouse.

      May 19, 2011 at 21:12 | Report abuse |
  50. JB

    Nobody is getting murdered or lynched here. Simmer down.

    May 19, 2011 at 14:21 | Report abuse | Reply
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