Monogamy: How Important is It to You?

Monday, Apr. 16th 2012 1:00 AM

Though the statistics vary a bit by study and by gender, most married Americans are monogamous, or at least they expect monogamy from their spouses. Many of us get downright irate about its importance. Some people threaten violence or even murder should their spouses have sex with someone else … and they mean it. Some say nothing but quietly plot the general havoc they would wreak if their partners should cheat – everything from running their partner’s name through the mud, to taking them to the cleaners in court. Some would just feel hurt but not seek retribution, and others don’t expect fidelity at all in their relationships. Either way, it’s probably safe to say that most of us have given the issue some thought and feel pretty strongly about it one way or the other. And considering the emotional, financial and even bodily damage that infidelity can bring about, it’s worth discussing your thoughts with your mate.

Even if you don’t think either of you would ever stray, it’s important to get some clarity about what would happen. After all, there are probably some things that you never thought you’d do – until you did. If monogamy is an expectation – either explicit or implicit – in your relationship, consider putting an actual penalty on the “violation.”

It is said that marriage is a contract, and many contracts have expectations and penalties. So, get the monogamy conversation popping by adding a dollar figure or a substantial penalty to it. Whether or not you make it official or enforce it is up to you, and is ultimately irrelevant. The point is simply to gain a clear understanding of how much value each of you places on fidelity, which is good information to have.

So, what would you consider a fair penalty if your partner had sex with someone other than you? Maybe $1,000 per month for 10 years, not including any alimony or child support that might also be issued? Or perhaps a greater financial responsibility where your children are concerned? In response to this question, a buddy of mine said that he would want his partner to pay for babysitting until their children were grown – at his discretion.

By proposing a penalty to our mates, we get the opportunity to gauge how strongly they feel about fidelity. Your partner might agree to your terms, argue for a lighter or stricture punishment, or state an unwillingness to pay anything because he/she considers it an unfair expectation. Either way, adding a financial incentive to the equation can breathe a new form of candor into the discussion.

Are you ready for the results? Eliminate the quiet seriousness of the issue. How much does it mean to you? How much would you be willing to pay for an indiscretion? Clarity, all the way around, can be a Powerful thing.

And if you think your relationship is too sacred to discuss in terms of money, stay tuned. That’s next week’s topic.

Keep Rising,


Frank Love

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14 Comments on “Monogamy: How Important is It to You?”

  1. Carmen M. Says:

    I agree this is a topic that should be explored by couples in pre-marital counseling. The idea of adding a penalty is an interesting approach to getting the conversation rolling.

  2. David A. Says:

    Hahahahahahahahah… Frank….. Haahahahahah.. Monogamy. Hahahahahahah.
    I didn’t think people even knew how to spell that word let alone wish to discuss it with the one person who could screw you the most. But yes, let’s discuss it. Hahahahahhah.
    Monogamy. Hahahahahaa. And other fairy tales of course.
    How about first, let’s discuss the existance of Santa Claus, Jesus Christ, The Easter Bunny, The Oath of The Presidents Office.
    Did you know that the CIA and the FBI seek out people that are excellent liars. For security purposes only of course.
    My ex-wife… hahahah… she has a high ranking job with the bank. I should have known… hahahahah they love to lie.. so.. yes.. Monogamy.. hahahhahahah
    I love you David.. I would never ever.. OMG.. why would you ask that question?
    Because the next day I caught her with another man.
    Monogamy…. hahahahahah…. here in ends the lesson. It’s just a word.
    Great topic Frank…. hahahaha.. you’re a funny guy.

  3. Deborah B. Says:

    Perhaps the title ought to read “Monogamy in Marriage” …. after all, there is a spoken vow to “forsake all others” ……

  4. Valentina F. Says:

    I really recommend the book Opening Up by Tristan Taormino on the subject of polyamoury. There are so many beautiful & enriching ways to do relationships that are worth consideration and having a mature conversation about.

  5. Stan Says:

    Enjoyed reading your recent blog on monogamy or the lack thereof in relationships. I, however, don’t believe that a financial compensation… of any amount…. would compensate for the emotional anguish/penalty that such an act of infidelity would create. I tend to focus on what couples can do to maintain a healthy, and happy monogamous relationship which may take a little more work on the part of the female since men are perceived as those most unwilling to commit. As I describe in one of may essays from The Penile Soliloquies:

    Is it the Marrying that men are afraid of or is it the Monogamy that goes along with it? Men fear Monogamy for one reason MONOTONY. But take a man like me…. you see, I’ve been happily married for a long time. The key is… she keeps me excited. Always surprising me with a little bit o’ this and a little bit o’ that. Know what I mean? She takes the time to understand what I really like and how I like it and she makes sure that I only gets it from one source….her. She ain’t ashamed to please me either and I respond in kind ‘cause there ain’t no shame in my game. My philosophy is ”No one knows where the nose goes when the doe’s closed.”

    You know, a woman could pretty much control a man if she did her best to please him,… in every way,… like so many of them “claim” they do. He wouldn’t have any desire to cheat because of what she supplies inside and outside of the bedroom. Now, sometimes a woman may need a little help but I aint got no problem asking for what I want. You see.. I’m a firm believer that if you want to g-e-t…, you got to a-s-k!

    A man aint looking for perfection, he’s just looking for her best.., for her to mix it up a little, you know.. put some flavor in it…..keep it fresh! And that keeps monotony out of the game. Does a man have to tell his woman when to change the color of her fingernail polish? Hell.. to da naw!

    Ladies, yo man wants you to be a lady but he damn sure wants you to know when not to be. Are you down with that? Are you ready to pump it up,.. thong it,.. drop it down? Ya’ll know there’s power in the boo-tay!!

    Any man with a hard on, aint gon’ stay in a boring ass relationship. So every now and then all a woman has to do is keep her man happy with some pumps, a bump and a hump and he’ll be her honey-do man forever.

    So when it comes to sex, keep yo’ man at home and step it up to the max…. Every chance you get, “Get it on like popcone!”.….and don’t be shy!…, pump it up…, thong it…, drop it down. I said,. Pump It Up!….Thong It!….Drop It Down!

  6. Grace C. Says:

    I hope we all consider STD’s and the like, but maybe moreso the emotional damage that can be done when one partner considers a relationship monogamous and it isn’t. Is there a different answer by age? I think monogamy is important, but then I am a retired older person. At the least, people in a relationship should agree on this idea.

  7. Elverda Says:

    If one proclaims to be a Christian, then this issue of monogamy should never be a concern. My God says He’s a jealous God, and He doesn’t like it when we try to serve Him and still serve the lust of the world. The church was modeled after the marriage, that’s how important it is to God. He’s the bridegroom who is coming back for His bride. Get it? What part of Thou shall not is not clear to folks? Don’t worry about “penalties” down here, because God has the ultimate penalty for those who do not obey His commandments. And if you can’t last in your marriage here forever, you will last in the final judgment somewhere forever. Your choice.

  8. Andi W. Says:

    Monogamy or the highway. Why get married in the first place if you don’t want a permanent non-cheating spouse.

  9. Christina F. Says:

    Very interesting article cant wait to see what next week’s topic will be. Monogamy to me is very important, in fact that is why I went into the business I did to like the one poster you had ‘Stan’ said Spice it up and keep it poppen like popcorn, his take was too funny, loved it. I would love to know how long they have been married that would be an inspiration for younger couples and a reminder to ladies. Sad but true not to get lazy and let them selves go. I am interested too in the book the other gentlemen spoke of ‘ THE MYTH OF MONOGAMY by David Barash’ I will have to check that out. Have a blessed day keep the great articles coming they are wonderful.

  10. Ralph H. Says:

    I am monogamous out of respect for my wife. I would be a swinger if she agreed to join in. Love with sex is wonderful, but I feel they can be seperated for ones pleasure.

  11. Jimi B. Says:

    in a word: “very”. I’m personally committed to (for example) saving myself for Inna. It has ‘been a while” (sexually) for both of us!

  12. Tiago N. Says:

    One word: CULTURE

  13. Carol Says:

    What if medical issues interfere with “normal” sexual function for one of the two parties?

  14. Gwen Says:

    Monogamy surely does not work in American ’cause we are raised to believe that someone is “yours” – I’m not in possession of any so called solution but, we sure need to do some things differently – and at least start with a conversation about our expectations – I think one of the things that we need to work on is simply feeling better about ourselves so that we don’t ask someone to fill in that gap for us – we need to start off whole instead of deficient in ways that we ask our mates to compensate for – I hear often from my friends that “he doesn’t tell me I’m pretty” – that probably would be nice but you should already feel pretty, just in case you don’t get told that – most of us (men and women) are spiritually bankrupt – we need to start building stronger communities so that we don’t have to feel so all alone……….

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