An Exploration of Non-Monogamy

NYT magazine's cover story this week is a very fascinating long-read on open marriages and non-monogamous couples. Monogamy has such a moral dominance in our lives that an earnest exploration of non-monogamy, such as this article, makes a lot of people uncomfortable. 

Below are some excerpts, which do not serve as a summary, but they struck me for various reasons, and which I'd like to preserve. I'll post some excerpts and quotes in independent posts as well.

* "Would you rather be asleep and have things fall apart? Or rather be alive and have things fall apart?"

* Most monogamous couples labor to avoid [jealousy] at all costs; but for the philosophically polyamorous, jealousy presents an opportunity to examine the insecurities that opening a relationships lays bare.

* It took decades for sex researchers to consider the possibility that women’s fabled low libido might be a symptom of monogamy.

* ... the deluded idea that your partner is knowable and entirely safe. Clinging to that illusion, neither partner really sees the other, or even acknowledges that the other has hidden, private selves.

* Open marriages, I started to think, are not just for people who were more interested in sex, but also for people who were more interested in people, more willing to tolerate the inevitable unpacking conversations, the gentle making of amends, the late-night breakdowns and emotional work of recommitting to and delighting each other.

* Over the next day or two, I thought about the man, sometimes, and even wondered if he was thinking about me. Part of what I enjoyed in thinking about him, I realized, was that he was a private thought of my own, like a room in my house where neither my children nor my husband had ever so much as left an empty cereal bowl.

Comments