More on healthy poly families vs. Gingrichy behavior
"Open marriage" rocketed in Google News rankings after Newt Gingrich's second wife dropped her bomb on Thursday and he responded with a flame-throwing condemnation of... the news media. Amid the attention, advocates of healthy, ethical open relationships and polyamory have been seizing this chance to tell their stories of how it can be done right with agreement and caring and kindly love all around.
I posted a bunch of these yesterday, from some of the world's foremost media. Here are a couple more, both by Sierra Black, stressing the benefits that her caring poly network provides for raising a family.
On the mom-site Babble.com, "for a new generation of parents":
Open Marriage Isn’t So Bad
...While that seems like a slimy request from a cheater trying to wiggle out of having betrayed his wife, Newt’s not alone in wanting non-monogamy. Anywhere from 1 % to 10% of couples are living intentionally non-monogamous lives.
My husband and I are among them, and we’re pretty happy with our arrangement.
Tonight after we tuck the kids in, my husband will kiss me goodnight and head over to his girlfriend’s house. It’s not a secret or a problem; that’s just how our marriage works. We both have other partners.
I don’t know what we’d do without them. Our friends and family are wonderful, but it’s my girlfriend I call when I need a ride to the hospital with a sick kid. There’s something about the intimacy of a romantic relationship that makes me feel better about asking her if I can bring my vomiting child in her car.
I don’t know how monogamous couples do it....
Whole article (Jan. 21, 2012).
Our successful open marriage
My husband and I may seem strange for wanting multiple partners. To my kids, this is what normal looks like.
By Sierra Black
I spent a recent weekend up in Maine with my girlfriend and our three kids. We went on long canoe trips, made mountains of buttery waffles, and read Rainbow Fairy books aloud till the words blurred together on the page. When the kids had gone to bed and the house was quiet, we crawled into bed and had sex so hot I thought the sheets might catch fire.
When I got home, I told my husband all about it.
My marriage is open. It’s also happy and stable. After I shared our mountain adventures, he filled me in on the highlights of his weekend: a small triumph at work, some quality time with his girlfriend, a successful home repair. We curled up at the end of the night, watched some old “Dr. Who” episodes and went to sleep in each other’s arms.
I never thought I’d have anything in common with Newt Gingrich. But if the claims that he once asked his ex-wife, Marianne, for an open marriage are true, then we might be more alike than I thought. Unlike that alleged scenario, however (which began with an affair), my husband’s and my open marriage has been based on openness and honesty from day one.
In fact, I’ve never been in a monogamous relationship. This openness in my romantic life stems in part from feminism and in part from idealism. I’m passionate about owning my own sexuality. I can’t stomach the thought of handing the reins of my sexual life to someone else, even someone I love and trust as much as my husband.
I’m also passionate about sharing.... I embraced nonmonogamy, or polyamory as the cool kids like to call it, because I’m good at it. I’m prone to falling for people; my girlfriend likes to say I fall in love with lampposts. I’m good at communication and mediation. I’m bad at rules. Clearly, polyamory was for me.
When I got married and started a family, I just kept doing what I’d always done.
While some people leave polyamory behind with their wild youth, there are large numbers of families that quietly continue to embrace this life while raising kids and growing old together. Some of them form households with several adult “spice” (a humorous plural of spouse). More commonly, they do what I do: live with one spouse, whom they raise kids with, and step out for date nights with other lovers.
...My life sounds complicated, but in many ways it’s routine. The children are the main focus of our attention. My husband and I have three kids. We spend a lot of our time doing the things any parent does: picking the kids up from school, shuttling them to and from activities and birthday parties, cooking them dinner and reading them bedtime stories.
Since we’ve always been poly, I often wonder how monogamous couples do it. I get so much support from my lovers. No one else, not my friends, not my parents, no one, is as willing to deal with the messes and mishaps of parenting as my sweeties. There’s something about romantic intimacy that builds a family-type closeness. These are the people I call when I’m puking my guts out and can’t take care of my kids, the people who call me when their car gets towed and they need a rescue.
Polyamory enthusiasts like to point out that the word means “multiple loves.” They really want to stress the loving commitments people make, the way these networks of relationships support each other. It’s not about the sex, you hear over and over again.
This always makes my girlfriend and me giggle. Here’s a tip: It’s about the sex. If it weren’t, we’d be close friends and I wouldn’t be writing this article....
Whole long article (Jan. 21, 2012).
National Geographic show to re-air. If you missed the remarkably good TV documentary about a 17-year triad family that the National Geographic Channel aired on January 10th, it'll be on again Tuesday the 24th at 10 p.m. Eastern time. (Schedule.) The 20-minute segment is the second of three in the one-hour "Odd Couples" episode of NatGeo's "Taboo" series. I think it would have come off better if it were not sandwiched between other "odd couples" to gawk at, but still. (The show is not available online.)