Friday, July 11, 2008

On Contemplating Polygyny FOR REAL

Recently, and unexpectedly, my wife gave me a set of conditions under which she would allow me to be polygynous. Let me set the stage for you.

I met and took my present wife while married to another woman. At that time my first wife and I were estranged, which was the choice of my first wife. The estrangement took place, then my second wife and I married. A year later a civil divorce took place that I did not recognize. If you want to discuss this, please comment on the post. In April of 2000 or 2001, I'll have to look at my records, I sent what I call a "bill of divorcement" to my first wife when I discovered she was living with another man and quite understandably calling him her husband. I ceased to be an active polygynist at that point. For the last 7 or 8 years I have been monogamous.

My second wife married me knowing I regarded my marriage as valid until my first offended me in the real way required by divorce law, that being adultery. We continued on that way until I had proof of that adultery. My second wife (now my only one) had received from me a personal commitment to be monogamous. I love her very much, thus I was willing to do this, even though I clearly believed polygyny to be righteous. We have often discussed changing that, it is her option, as I promised her. That changed a bit recently. She has often said I could take another wife as long as I was willing to not be with her, which I have always said, would never do. It is not for lack of love for my wife that I would ever contemplate active polygyny again.

The scenario under which I would contemplate it is adequate provision for my second, and now ONLY wife. I believe that wives should be housed separately. I could be wrong about that, but it's what I believe based on my study of scripture. Essentially my wife agreed that if she had a separate house, we could continue to be together, simply not under the same roof with a second wife. Coolio. That clears the path of the largest obstacle. There are now OTHER, very large obstacles.

One. I am 54. I am still a viable kinda guy, but I'm not 25. The implications of that are many. Suffice it to say that I can still BE a husband to a wife, perhaps several, but the beauties of being older are also the perils of being older. The beauty is I could get an overt overture such as Boaz got from Ruth and walk away from it. The peril is that as a husband, I am much closer to the day where I might HAVE to walk away from it. I have a duty to all wives.

Two. I made the error of getting a certain surgery. Children are one of the greatest of purposes of marriage, to enter one knowing I could produce no offspring, is a bad idea. Reversal of such surgeries is very possible, but also very expensive.

Three. The aforementioned housing arrangement. What I own now is a RV. I would not ask any woman to live in one as a wife. I ask my present wife to do so, because it is our only alternative. Thus I must get TWO houses, not one. Nothing spectacular mind you, but that is what I must do.

Four. I believe I must not require a wife to work outside the home to make polygyny work as an ongoing requirement. Thus I must be ideally, in business for myself. I'm not. It is not that I would not ask a wife to work outside the home if made necessary by future economic situations, but I shouldn't ENTER a marriage with the idea that she has to work outside the home to make the polygyny viable. Perhaps as a sort of DOWRY I might do so, but the idea would be that if she became my wife, once there were children, that she could CEASE to work outside the home. The standard is at least, "work optional" when it comes to a wage earning "outside the home" job.

Based on that really tenuous possibility of plural marriage I let it be ever so slightly known, that I MIGHT be available, sometime, maybe not soon. It was like fishing for the first time and putting string and a bent needle on a stick and dropping it in an irrigation ditch. What surprised me is I got a strike SO HARD that I'm getting pulled nearly into the water. If you've ever seen the movie "The Return of the King" in the "Lord of the Rings" series, imagine that I am "Deagol," I just haven't gotten dunked. Yet.

With the clear understanding that "nothing is impossible with the LORD" though, the situation is pretty impossible. The young lady qualifies for marriage, and after examination, has MANY Godly qualities and is, as far as can be determined to this point, a wonderful choice. The list of obstacles includes the above list, and special considerations.

She is a foreigner. Yes, I understand this would possibly be the sole motivation for marrying a crusty old pile of junk. Let's set that aside and assume I've cleared that out of the way to everyone's satisfaction. The practical consideration is that I cannot marry her legally, to get her into the country. She'd have to get here on her own. If she gained citizenship, well and good, if not (green card only) I could assist her, assuming successful outcome of surgery, by making a mother out of her.

She WAS Muslim. She is now Christian. This represents a real danger to her. Again, I am aware of certain "obvious" problems. Assume that I am not being conned and know how to determine that to my satisfaction. I also believe in parental permission in the case of never married women. You can guess what kind of problem THAT represents. The real danger is that of "honor killing." The lesser practical danger is "like HECK MY DAUGHTER marries an infidel." You see, no permission is a bit of a problem.

What it boils down to is that in my mind, I've been occupied with considerations that have little to do with the sexual, except for the very technical side of that question. In contemplating a polygyny I have to overcome a number of obstacles that have MONEY written all over them. I am at present a poor man. Thus it requires a bit of a miracle. Short of someone LENDING me about a million dollars, I'm not capable. This is a serious speculation by the way. The money would be used to purchase a business, thus providing the context for a Polygyny. I've studied the retail business in question. It pencils. I just can't get conventional financing for it, so I've had to table it. I might not need THAT much money, but I would need something along those lines, or perhaps quite a bit less.

I'm going back to work Monday, if not then, a little later. That's the good news. The bad news is I won't be earning a net of several hundred thousand dollars if past experience is any indicator. The particular young lady's need of a husband is very real. At this point I would be happy to FIND for her, another man who COULD address her needs immediately. I would be a little wistful at loosing the opportunity myself, but my concerns for her, are greater than my own desire. I truly wish to see her safe and secure, and if that involved ME being a husband to her, well and good, very good as a matter of fact. If that involved a good man finding her and meeting her needs, that's what real love is all about, seeking the good of the other, not seeking your own good.

At this point my greatest concern is for that of my new found friend. I would TRULY love to be part of the solution, but that would be a true miracle. I'm not used to such miracles in life. I tend to get exactly the opposite. Every time my hopes are raised for any life goal, they have been shot down. If the past is any indication I'll only get all dressed up, and have nowhere to go. Nevertheless, God can provide if this is his desire. If it is not, I'll continue to dress for the occasion and keep my lamp as well supplied as I can make it.

To sum up. In becoming a polygynist again, what I have found is that the concerns are primarily practical. I have evaluated the young lady in question and will continue to do so and my concerns are that she be a GODLY young woman. Most of our conversations are discussions of scripture, she is reading the scriptures furiously. I am trying to be a good guide to her as a brother in Christ, not a prospective lover. I look for GODLY qualities in a believing sister.

It's an ECONOMIC consideration, to the max. In trying to take care of both wives, my considerations are entirely for their well being. If I can't take care of the first, I should not undertake the second. If I can only take care of the first, I should never take the second. Despite the first item on my list above, believe it or not, I don't spend my time thinking about the SEXUAL side of it. I have devoted a little thought to it, but it's hard to sustain that line of thinking. My thoughts primarily turn to making a place for everyone concerned. Who will live where. HOW do I make them happy, what do they NEED? As almost an afterthought there is the business about the physical side of marriage. So whether or not anything came of this opportunity for me, I offer this as an example of what goes through THIS man's mind. Believe me, it is LOVE in ACTION, not sex, despite what you might think. Since it is LOVE, not sex that dominates my thinking, I would actually give up this candidate to another man, if she would have him, if all I could do would be to find that man. That last comment is for those who think I am some sort of "dirty old man." Now you are free to suggest I am a pimp. You can never win.

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cheese said...

"At this point the dream ended because I awoke to someone knocking on my front door. It was the mail man bringing my power bill."

Hugh said...

Ain't that the truth.

JohnLester said...

I'd be willing to talk to her, Hugh, if the Lord would lead you in that direction. I'm always interested in devout, godly women that are also open to polygyny. We all know how rare they are.

One very unique thing about me is that I have read the Koran cover to cover, continue to read it, consider it to be inspired, and consider Mohammad to be a prophet.

And yet still consider myself a Christian.

As I like to say, a Patriarch First.

A Mormon Fundamentalist second.

I am a Mormon. Christian. Jew. Muslim.

I am a Christian, Jew. Muslim. Mormon.

I am a Jew. Muslim. Mormon. Christian.

I am a Muslim. Mormon. Christian. Jew.