A look at the new adultery, which is the old adultery seen through the wink and nod.  You or I, if conservative, might think that such a thing undermines marriage, but, author Catherine Hakim insists not, that adultery should be retitled something like a “playfair” or an “adventure, free of insinuations of betrayal”.  Why be old-fashioned, when adultery is beneficial for marriage?  “As dating websites open up a global shop window of sexual possibilities, as life expectancy continues to rise and we become increasingly sexually aware, how can we still take the crushing old rules of fidelity, that turn marriage into a prison, for granted? Why should we not be able to recapture the heady thrills of youth, while protecting a secure home life?”

As Peter Lawler might put it, marriage is all about ME.  Doesn’t this assume that men and women have become immune to jealousy or guilt or any of the other emotions that made spousal infidelity so painful for the person who did not wander?  In this scenario, that spouse has only himself or herself to blame for not escaping the “marital prison”.  Maybe I run with the wrong crowd, but I do not know of an open marriage that didn’t eventually become so open that was like a burst balloon.  Similarly, the gaseous elements that escaped linked to others, by which I mean both partners wound up married to others in marriages where openness was not evident; there was a stronger bond since no one wanted to go through “that” again.

This is an excerpt from a book Hakim wrote and I wonder of the whole darn thing reads like synopses of modern romance novels or like the kinds of television shows that I read about or hear about but never watch. In the wrong social situations, I have been subjected to conversations about both those novels and shows.  They sound just like what Hakim writes about in this piece.  Fantastic?

Articles by Kate Pitrone

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