Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Negotiated Infidelity: Problem Solver or Problem Starter?

This is a real question folks. I came across this story about a month ago and it intrigued me.

Holly Hill says that if a woman takes the time to truly examine her relationship and considers Mother Nature's unerring spell on men's libidos, she might realize that letting her boyfriend or spouse know she's OK with him having sex elsewhere is a logical way to prevent him from doing it in secret.

"I think that cheating men are normal," says Hill. "Monogamous men are heroes. Monogamy does have a place in relationships, but not on the long-term. Men are hard-wired to betray women on the long-term."

The author also goes on to say, "It is more powerful for a woman to negotiate infidelity than to wonder why her spouse is coming home late."

I was taken abreast by this topic. I can see both sides of the argument. Problem solver because there are no secrets. One thing we hate in relationships is secrets. A lot of people in relationships feel there should be an unexplained, nonnegotiable openness. One thing you hear in cheating relationships is, "He made me look like a fool." Well you can eliminate this problem by knowing your husband is having relations with another woman. So there is a peace of mind??? Another thing to attribute to this negotiated infidelity is that it can keep the arguments and tension out of your marriage/relationship. Think about it. Let me throw you a scenario. If you have seen the movie Why Did I Get Married, Terry is in a relationship where his wife is pursuing a big career as an attorney and not spending little to any time with him. Terry is upset about the intimacy being gone in the relationship. She is frustrated at his beckoning for her time. Hypothetically, if she let him have a mate on the side, this could have lowered his expectations on her for some of these things. He wouldn't be complaining about sex or someone to spend time with from time to time. Another thing is that you can come back to the relationship when the time of you not having time is over. The wife won't be busy forever. Those are just some examples. I could go on but let me stop there.

Well, on to the problem starter. Negotiated infidelity can work, yes it can, if both parties are on board. If both parties aren't totally on board with the idea, it can create problems down the line. If the wife is kind of shaky about it, you can run into some arguments. If a wife, who agreed to the negotiated infidelity, wants her husband's time but he is with the other woman that can create a lot of problems. She can go off on him for not paying her the attention that he may have wanted from her. Going to my point earlier of the spouse being too busy, she won't be busy forever. She will want some her time too. Another thing that can cause problems too is if the man gets very attached/dependent on the other woman instead of his wife. What if he was inviting the other woman out to places with him instead of his wife? What if it became more than just about sex? Think about when the wife frees up her schedule and wants to cut off the negotiated infidelity. Can you really go back to monogamous relationship? I doubt it.

Thank you for taking a look into My Thoughts...


MysticTrini said...

Under perfect circumstances where human beings have control of their emotions and make very though-out decisions before acting negotiated infidelity can and will work.

We don't always live under perfect circumstances and the points you brought up about the what ifs will happen more frequently than not. If a man needs to cheat on his to be fulfilled than it is my belief he has an emptiness/unhappiness he is trying to fill. Either that or he is not ready to settle down and is trying to force himself to be something he may not be ready to become.

I think it to be absurd to state that monogamy cannot exist in the long term when so many men do it and so many try hard not to step outside of their relationships.

Josephine Baker said...

So I have to say first I don't think anybody is hardwired to cheat. However, I do believe that their are people not just men who have issues with monogamy. I am not sure whether I would be able to handle this type of relationship, but I would definitely support having a conversation about negotiated infidelity. The question is though at what point does it stop being about just sex and become something more? The sex doesn't bother me as much as how do you continually have sex with someone and not form a relationship? And then how much do I need or want to know? Do I put a limit on the number of partners? I think my real issue would be how might this change me and my partner's intimacy if I know, because women's sexual and emotional sides are so intricately connected.

Chinye said...

I've been thinking whether it is normal/healthy for humans to be in committed and exclusive relationships with one partner. It seems as though people can have co-existing relationships but I believe that those multiple relationships are supplemented by complex and emotional feelings. So for me, I would not be open to negotiating any kind of infidelity in my relationship. If it’s about sex, sex isn't just sex when you are repeating it multiple times with the same person or a different person for that matter. I think what separates humans from animals as sexual beings is that we have choice. Animals act on it out of urges and instincts. Humans act on it not just out of urges and instincts but also out of choice or the choice not to, because of his or her higher capacity for affection, responsibility, respect, restraint, self-preservation, control, etc. In my humanity, I am not capable of sharing myself with more than one person at a time and I could not be in a relationship with someone who goes outside of our relationship for a connection (be it for love or for sexual satisfaction) because for me sexual satisfaction isn't greater than having a connection with the person I am in a relationship with.

I also just can't agree with the author's point that a man's libido cannot be satisfied by one person. It's not clear exactly what in 'mother nature' hard wires a man to reject monogamy other than the fact that he is a man. I think the author would have made a stronger argument by saying that some people in general aren't meant to be in long-term monogamous relationships rather than arguing in order to maintain a long-term relationship one must consider negotiating infidelity to satisfy their partner. In the event that the former is true, that some people just can't do long-term relationships, I think they should realize this about themselves and only look to get involved with someone who can support and partakes in short-term relationships as well. Two people in a relationship should be on the same page when agreeing be involved with one another and if both are open to being together for a short term and/or having a multiple relationships while together that I can see how that might work.

Above all, I feel as though when two people are in a long-term relationship, they should work hard to please their partner in the aspects their partner needs to be fulfilled. In the event that it doesn't happen, examine the relationship and see if the foundation of their relationship is strong and worth maintaining rather than bring a third party in to satisfy one partner's void. I definitely don’t see infidelity as a way of maintaining a long-term relationship because it isn't getting to the root of the problem; it's just covering up an underlying issue in the relationship.

Zee said...

Wow I feel like saying a man can't be faithful is a bail out completely. And having an open marriage like that doesn't that go against all the values that marriage is based upon? Granted there are ppl that have problems with monogamy period but those are ppl in my eyes that need not be married in the first place. I'm judtbone of those ppl that when I ever get married I'm gonna take my vows seriously and hopefully the person I marry does the same. Think I have a new idea for a blog. Lol

Handsome_soul said...

Happy to oblige the new blog idea. Thank you for your Thoughts..hope there are more to come everyone