The Polygamist's Daughter

Stories, Reflections and Conclusions of Life on the Inside


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What I Think about Polygamy Now

What do I really think about polygamy? Well that has changed over the years from thinking it was something God expected of me, to seeing it as a religious abuse and a human rights abuse against women and everything in between.

Having multiple sex partners and making lots of love sounds fabulous in theory, yet in reality I believe it is sadly missing the most crucial elements for genuine joy. It is important to understand that joy and happiness are two different things. Happiness is an emotion that can be generated in the belief that we are happy. It is generated by the perception of our choices and actions. Some people are perfectly happy in their misery, not realizing that joy is accessible. Joy is a state of being and occurs when we are fulfilled within ourselves and we no longer live our lives by the beliefs and expectations of anyone or anything else outside of ourselves. It is the result of our heart working to its full potential in alignment with our own inner truth.

Back to polygamy. Polygamy stems from a time in our human history when women were owned and collected by men and traded along with other livestock to build the kingdoms of men. King Solomon had hundreds of wives because he was a king with a very wealthy kingdom. Men gave him their daughters to earn favor with the king and in the hopes that their daughters would have a better life.

What does that have to do with today’s polygamy? Polygamy, now (except where polyamory is practiced – the newest hip term for open relationships, and a few ancient cultures where polyandry is practiced) only exists in cultures and belief systems where women are still recognized as being worth less than men and is justified by religion, otherwise recognized as religiously coerced polygyny. Some argue that it should be a person’s choice and yet any choice based in coercion, when there is a proverbial gun held at your head, isn’t really a free-will choice. It is a choice based in fear and is among the fear-based beliefs I often speak of.

Taking it a step further and assuming it is a choice based in freedom, there are still other issues to consider. It is nearly impossible to have a relationship that is balanced in the masculine and feminine when the numbers are lopsided. In a world where we are attempting to create balance and equality, polygamy simply does not make sense. The more women in the relationship the more masculine and authoritarian the man in the relationship is. That is why extremely authoritarian men are drawn to this form of relationship. The practice of polygyny also causes an imbalance among men. Men who are the most desirable attract the most women, leaving ordinary men without partners. Studies have shown that this imbalance increases violence in men and more hatred toward women. Precisely the opposite of the masculine/feminine balance and mutual respect so many of us are working to create.

And one more thought for consideration. Polygamy is heart breaking, or at the very least prevents the heart from working to its full potential. Women must guard their heart and cannot allow themselves to fully and completely love and connect with their husbands, simply because it hurts too much, and lovemaking lacks the creation of love. It also prevents men from opening up their heart and giving to their full ability out of the fear propagating jealousy and resentment between their wives. And yet, this is sold as love and beauty. What kind of love is it when we intentionally block our hearts from loving and creating to their greatest capacity?

In all honesty I don’t think polygamy can work until the world finally recognizes, once and for all, that men and women are equal. That if men can have more than one wife, women should be allowed the same courtesy, and that love can and should be given openly and freely without fear, coercion or jealousy.  It is certainly not my cup of tea, but in a perfect world it just might work. In a perfect world!


2 Comments

Sister Wives

Having been born and raised in a polygamist commune I saw both the jealousy and camaraderie of sister wives. I left the commune as a teenager and for many years I was angry about the way I had been raised and embarrassed to admit to anyone the truth about my childhood. However, now that I have come to a place in my life where I really know who I am as an individual and as a woman I am able to see how the polygamous lifestyle can work between consenting loving adults. I am happily monogamous and have no interest in polygamy, but I do understand why some women choose it both for religious and relationship reasons.

We as women yearn for connective relationships with other women. We thrive on girl’s night out and the bonds with our girlfriends. Once upon a time in a Matriarchal society women worked together for the betterment of their families and communities. Camaraderie and collaboration between women is still at the heart of who we are. But society insists that we pit ourselves against each other rather than support each other.

Polygamy certainly is not for me, but it can be a very rewarding relationship for women who have gotten past societal expectations and discovered the value of living in collaborative relationships with other women.