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are humans meant to be monogamous?

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message 1: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony I wonder if Spitzer is showing his wife this article right now...comments?

Servius  Heiner  | 1980 comments Mod
That is a great article RA.
I think if one feels compelled to "spread" their seed, or to get their Seed from another source, it is probably over. Even if the two get along.

"Your who would you do" thread showed something interesting, besides some of the shocking admissions by some of our Axis Mundi felines. Looking or being attracted to someone other then your counterpart is natural. (I think) Acting on it is completely different.

I don't think social monogamy really fits into "American culture". It happens I know, and some stick with their partners but I don't think it is right.

Once upon a time, I was a pretty heavy drinker. My wife was not always around but I never cheated. No amount of booze could make me forget my wife, and how special she is.

message 3: by RandomAnthony (last edited Mar 19, 2008 11:46AM) (new)

RandomAnthony You know, my wife is really cool, and what would really keep me from cheating on her is hurting her. I'm with you on that, Nick. Does that mean I don't think some other women are hot? Of course not. Does that mean I couldn't hook up with some women I know? Probably not. But the excitement or whatever would never outweigh the pain I might cause my wife or my kids. Did you ever see that Chris Rock movie "I Think I Love My Wife"? There's a scene when he's about to hook up with the (stunningly hot) Kerry Washington, and he doesn't because he thinks of his family. Great scene.

One of my best friends had a series of affairs not long ago. He really discovered, in therapy,(and he wasn't making excuses) that the motivation behind his affairs was the feeling of being trapped in a "perfect family" mode. In other words, he felt he HAD to go see his wife's parents every Sunday, he HAD to do whatever his wife wanted socially, etc. Those relationships are fucked up. Family responsibilities don't mean you have to give up who you are. In turn, I make sure I do a lot of what I want (e.g. read, go to bookstores, hang out with my friends) and I make sure I cover for my wife so she has time to do the same. I don't want to feel trapped and I don't her to feel trapped. That's when you lash out, I think, in order to feel free again. I know that's an oversimplification, but I think you know what I mean.

Servius  Heiner  | 1980 comments Mod
Trapped would make anybody want to lash out. We are ment to be free. I hope they worked things out.

shellyindallas I'm not married (cos I don't wanna be), but my boyfriend and I have been together for 13 years. There have been some break-ups over the years, but they never lasted to long. Were he to cheat on me, the relationship would end for good once and for all. But my idea of cheating is something completely separate from paying for sex or even getting a blow job from a drunk girl in a bathroom stall or whatnot. While I hope these things haven't happened, I certainly wouldn't end our relationship over them. I tend to believe guys when they say that they can have sex with a woman and have it "mean nothing". What would devastate me is if I found out my boyfriend was spending serious, get-to-know-each-other time with another woman. Laughing at her jokes, talking to her on the phone for extended periods, doing things like sending her flowers or buying her gifts. This is cheating.
I've tried to make sure my boyfriend feels as "free" as possible in this relationship, probably--no definitely to a fault, even if at times it meant sacrificing my own wants. But I'm not in this "trap" anybody. I hate that whole "dude, get ready to give up your life! nice knowing ya! how's the ball and chain?" bullshit.He needs me as much as I need him. That's generally how it works.
My boyfriend is my buddy and I'm with him b/c I want and need that kind of companionship in my life. Plus, I happened to by physically attracted to him which is a plus. But I don't feel b/c I'm in a committed relationship that every time he's in the mood for a row I'm obligated stop what I'm doing and drop trou. So if it happens that he comes to me someday and says he has something to confess about a girl whose name he didn't catch and a blowjob in the backseat of her car--I'll get over it.

message 6: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony I agree with shelly in that anyone could f--k up once. Or twice. Or three times. Those incidents don't define a relationship. I think it's fair to ask "Why did this happen? What is the larger issue here?" when someone hooks up with someone else.

I also don't think avoiding off-relationship hookups have to be characterized as restraint in the sense that someone is denying themselves the joy of hooking up with someone else. I like hanging out with my wife. That's why I married her.

message 7: by Amanda (last edited Mar 19, 2008 12:49PM) (new)

Amanda (randymandy) Great topic! Shelly you put it so very well. "spendng serious, get-to-know-each-ohter time" is more hurtful than one stupid mistake. But I think both parners have to be able to define it the same way. That or keep their mouths shut. What you don't know can't hurt you, and the confession--not the sex--can often be the downfall of the relationship.

message 8: by shellyindallas (last edited Mar 19, 2008 12:52PM) (new)

shellyindallas Exactly RA. And you bring up a good point I hadn't thought about. If my boyfriend confesses to "poor decision making/moment of weakness" activities beyond just being able to move on and understand that it doesn't mean he doesn't love me or want to be with me, the two of us should then do some real honest talking over why such an incident could happen in the first place. I don't want to sound overly sympathetic here, but i'm willing to bet that in most instances there's plenty of blame to go around. Obviously, whoever decides (it could be him or me) to cross that line outside of the relationship is ultimately responsible--but yeah, what else (if anything)is going on and what does this say about our relationship? Are there things that may need to change?

Servius  Heiner  | 1980 comments Mod
I don't know if I could swallow your take on it Shelly. If it works for you two, and you are both cool with it great, I'm not going to harp on you and say no.

I just know myself. The thought of anyone touching my wife get me mad. Maybe it is a self esteem thing... I don't think so, most likely a selfish thing, she is really great and I don't want to share.

I Defiantly don't want some schmuck "getting to know" her. I just might have to make my puppers an accessory to murder;)

shellyindallas yeah-- i really mentioned the "him or me" just to be fair. but really it'd never be me b/c girls (generally) like to invest more time and take sex more seriously than men do (typically, on the whole, for the most part etc). that was pretty much my whole point. i know (for me) my boyfriend doesn't view sex the way I do, doesn't ascribe as much meaning to it--so finding out that he had sex or sexual relations with another woman wouldn't devastate me. like i said, it'd be something totally different if they were getting to know one another, sans sex. and at that point it'd be like "ok, you met somebody else--see ya' later and have a nice life".

message 11: by Charissa, That's Ms. Obnoxious Twat to You. (new)

Charissa (dakinigrl) | 3620 comments Mod
Donald... what is O.P.P.? And what did your comment above refer to? I'm lost about what you are saying.

I have been single so long I don't think I have must to offer on this thread. I haven't had to ask myself these questions in quite some time. Except that I have a rule not to be sexually involved with married people. I have received a bizarre number of propositions... and even had one guy pretend to be single long enough to get in bed with me... later on to try and convince me he and his wife have an "understanding". Uh huh... nice. I think I am a naturally monogamous person when I am in love. Having sex with someone I am not in love with is uninteresting to me. Makes it difficult to be single and ever get laid. Sometimes I settle for liking the person and feeling rather fond toward them. But the sex is nowhere as good.

I have seen a lot of couples try the whole "open relationship" thing. I have never seen it work. Someone always gets hurt. Mostly what I have seen is dishonesty, and lousy relationships as a result. Intimacy is based on truth as far as I can tell. But what do I know? I've been single more of my adult life than I have been married. I'm a rank amateur.

Servius  Heiner  | 1980 comments Mod
Well, I would like to say something encouraging, But I have nothing. I'm just an ass hair under 30 and have been with my wife for the better part of the last ten years. I don't know how I do it or how we did it. I know I man whored around a lot when I was younger? But that doesn't really say anything does it?

message 13: by Charissa, That's Ms. Obnoxious Twat to You. (new)

Charissa (dakinigrl) | 3620 comments Mod
and therein lies the rub.

so to speak.

and I think, if most women were honest with themselves and comfortable with their sexuality, they would cop to the same dynamic.

message 14: by Sarah (new)

Sarah (songgirl7) Oh there's definitely that side to me. Of course I notice other guys. I'm married, not dead. It's okay to look at the menu as long as I eat at home.

Servius  Heiner  | 1980 comments Mod
I think everyone looks.

message 16: by Chris (new)

Chris M. | 4 comments This a truly interesting and enlightening discussion. Shelley brings up an interesting point: Is the sex cheating or is it the emotional intimacy "polite" society associates with it?

If emotional intimacy is worse than physical, can a man and a woman ever have a real friendship while involved with other partners? I tend to think so. I have female friends with whom I am close. I love them dearly but I won't sleep them. We do share emotional intimacy. Is that cheating?

What about the whole work-spouse concept? Those relationships (in my experience) are general not about the physical. They can, however, be exceptionally intimate and very fulfilling.

But, then again, I guess this does beg the monogamy issue doesn't it?

message 17: by Kirk (new)

Kirk | 136 comments I'm with Charissa: from what I've seen of the open marriage thing, it rarely works. Somebody's always getting screwed---and I mean figuratively, not literally.

What about swingers? I was once propositioned by a married couple. No bragging here---they were drunk, and no amount of liquor could've made me drunk enough. I kept having visions of having to lean over to the other dude and say, "Are those yours or mine?"

But Chris asks a great question. My feeling is that no, you're not cheating. I think we shut off a part of our empathy if we don't have close friends of the opposite persuasion. It takes a great amount of trust and faith on the part of the significant other to not be threatened. Can't say I've always lived up to that standard, but I've tried. And fortunately I have a very confident siggie who understands I wouldn't be who I am if I didn't have female friends.

message 18: by RandomAnthony (last edited Mar 21, 2008 02:20AM) (new)

RandomAnthony I have one, and heck, probably two, work spouses. I guess I'm just a work spouse slut. If you're not sure to what Chris is referring, check out this link:

I'd actually call the women "work sisters" if anything, because if even if they're cute, they're really more like sisters to me at this point. I'm not kidding. We rely on this each that much, and we've known each other for that long, and we're all married, so the sexual becomes minimized after a while.

shellyindallas I just want to clarify that I'm not for open relationships. I am not down with my boyfriend getting physical with any girl that rings his bell were he given the opportunity. I just think that when it comes to cheating--and any sort of stray from tour relationship, physical or emotional, is definitely cheating--I would be able to get over a meaningless physical encounter with a total stranger way before I would ever be able to get over my boyfriend spending quality, "romantic", time with another woman. Not like a co-worker, or a buddy, but someone he would meet that I wouldn't be aware of who he would be doing things to impress and thinking to himself "this girl's really awesome, she gets me!" That would horrify me!

message 20: by Sarah (new)

Sarah (songgirl7) OK, I have a question for all of you who are or have been divorced.

I have some friends who recently (like, within the last couple of weeks) split. They are both calling me. I do not want to take sides or get involved. But I do want to be a good friend. So what do I do? I had lunch with the wife (whom I'm closer to) and tried to just listen, not give advice. As soon as I got home, the husband called me and wanted to know what she said. I told him I wasn't going to get in the middle but he said by having lunch with her, I am choosing sides.

I've known people who say when you get divorced you really learn who your friends are. Is there any possible way to remain neutral?

message 21: by Meghan (new)

Meghan No. Not while the divorce is occuring. Afterwards, you could be friends with both, but when it's happening, there are only "sides". But it also depends on the couple. YOU can choose to try and remain friends with both, but it's really up to them if they choose to remain friends with you (knowing you're still friends with the "enemy"). And even non-acrimonious divorces, they are still the "enemy" until the judge signs off on the whole thing.

message 22: by Sarah (new)

Sarah (songgirl7) Yeah, this one is pretty bitter and nasty so far. I feel like I should be there as an ear or a shoulder but I just don't know how I can do that without getting put in the middle.

Also, Meghan: I just sent you a private message (not related to this).

message 23: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony I think you're right on to sit and listen first and foremost. One of my best friends is going through serious martial issues right now. I listen and try to reassure him he's not crazy or an asshole. He's not either.

I also think people can't be expected to be reasonable in a divorce, so I agree with your explicit approach. Esp. if it's bitter and nasty.

message 24: by Meghan (new)

Meghan I agree with the below. I think I sounded like you shouldn't be friends with both. But it'll be hard to not be dragged in the middle when both know you're speaking to the other. You'll just have to be firm with the rules/boundaries of your relationship. I'd avoid advice (unless you've been through it personally, it's hard to swallow). Just lend an ear and a shoulder and like Donna said, an opportunity to think about something else.

message 25: by Charissa, That's Ms. Obnoxious Twat to You. (new)

Charissa (dakinigrl) | 3620 comments Mod
I think it's rude for the husband to put you in the position of "reporting" on your conversation. It's natural for people to *want* to be a fly on the wall during dramatic and painful episodes... but as adults we have to accept that it isn't reasonable (or even productive). I think the only thing we can do in rifts between people we love is try to be there for them, listen, offer our condolences and mostly stay out of the rest of it. Unless there is a clear case of abuse.

It unfortunate that one of the couple feel that you have to choose sides. I think it's rare for a couple to be able to split without alienating friends, and for people to wind up choosing sides. If you want to stay friends with both of them I think your instincts are spot on. If you stay grounded and don't let them draw you into their fight, in time you may be able to honor that wish.

message 26: by Inky (last edited Apr 04, 2008 05:38PM) (new)

Inky | 41 comments "Nobody in the first throes of a divorce is sane." There's a thought that certainly explains a lot.

Has anyone besides me ever had an opposite sex friendship seriously diminish because the new girlfriend or boyfriend has insecurity issues? I hardly ever talk to someone who used to be one of my best friends because his girlfriend doesn't like his friends who predate her. It's not just me - there's a whole generation of us who ran together in college. She actually tries to forbid him from doing our once-a-month Tuesday happy hours. It's an attitude that's going to cost her this relationship because my friend is getting fed up with it. He only calls me when he's at work now because he doesn't want to put up with the grief. He puts up with it because he really loves her, but she just won't step back.

I don't think maintaining close friendships is cheating at all, but apparently, she does.

message 27: by Sarah (last edited Apr 04, 2008 06:17PM) (new)

Sarah (songgirl7) She probably doesn't think the friendship is cheating; she is probably worried that it will lead to cheating. It's unfortunate that she's so insecure.

Yeah, I'm kind of annoyed with the husband for calling me and trying to drag me into their mess. The circumstances of the split lead me to believe they won't reconcile, but who knows. Also, if they do reconcile, I don't ever want either of them to be uncomfortable with me because I was too involved in their problems, you know? I know I'm not the only one he's trying to involve, too. He posted a thing on his Facebook that all his friends should delete her as a friend. It's really immature, but I understand that he's hurting and it's making him crazy. I just worry about how this anger and bitterness is affecting their 2 young children. Also, I think it's natural for me to be closer to the wife than to him because we're women. Anyway, it's just a mess. It's very sad.

Oh, I should mention that he backed off when I told him not to bring me into the middle.

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