Components of Open Marriage & Polyamory and the Ethics Thereof

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In America, the values of monogamous, heterosexual marriage are drilled into the fabric of the society – so much so that the prospect of any other setup becomes virtually unthinkable. However, in an ever-evolving semiosphere, these other setups are emerging from their hiding place in order to find a forefront spot in contemporary culture and establish themselves as legitimate lifestyles. Education and understanding become paramount as new ideas and formations appear, necessitating tolerance and even acceptance. One of these new formations is what’s known as an “open marriage,” in which one or both members of a dichotomous marriage seek sexual satisfaction through extraneous partners. Anyone who has ever truly invested their emotions in…show more content…
But as time passes, the role of the spouse has become much more encompassing: now one’s partner is expected to be not only their lover, but their best friend, their therapist, confidant, playmate, masseuse, and escort with matching taste in music and movies. These expectations are of course somewhat unrealistic – one will most likely not find everything they could ever want in just one person. This is where polyamory comes into play: it gives you everything – just not from the same person. According to Washington Post writer Monica Hesse, Polyamory isn't about sex, polys tell you. It is about love. It is about loving your primary partner enough to love that they have a new secondary partner, even when their New Relationship Energy with that person leaves you, briefly, out in the cold. It's about loving yourself enough to acknowledge that your needs cannot be met by one loving person. It's about loving love enough to embrace it in unexpected form -- like maybe in the form of your primary's new secondary! -- in which case you may all form a triad and live happily together. That kind of love. But unlike an open marriage, which is the pursuit of sexual gratification with no strings attached, polyamory is “less about them wanting to fulfill personal desires, they say, and more about needing more people to meet the daily requirements of 21st-century life. As in, if it takes two incomes to keep up with the modern mortgage and school fees,

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