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Group Marriage/Expanded Families

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posted on Jul, 31 2011 @ 11:20 AM
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If you've read much Heinlein (as I know many here have), you're familiar with the concept of group marriages. For those who aren't familiar, it's basically the idea of forming a larger family base, primarily for the purpose of providing a more stable base to raise children with (from?), This is, after all, the major purpose of any kind of marriage, isn't it? Yes, I know most of y'all are looking straight to the bedroom, but this isn't about that. Let's keep our minds out the gutter if we can. For now, anyway.


We're all aware that there is an issue with child raising these days. There are a plethora of reasons for this, but many, I think, can be summed up under the heading of "not enough parents". In today's world, most families (that I know, anyway) need both parent's income to support their family, and still just scrape by. This leaves lots of under-supervised kids, not getting the attention required to raise them properly. There are plenty of other causes, too, such as irresponsible parents, substance abuse issues, and what not, but more parents would help with a lot of these, too.

Consider a family unit of, say, 3 men and 3 women. That's a base of 4 incomes to live off, while still having 2 parents on full time child raising duty. The roles of provider/caregiver could be rotated when desired, or if/when a working "wife" became pregnant. If someone suddenly lost their job, or became sick/disabled, there would still be 3 other incomes supporting the family, so it wouldn't be as dire a situation.

There would always, always be a parent around when needed, and the children would get to learn from the combined experience of 6 adults, as opposed to just 2. When kids get home from school, someone's there to greet them, keep an eye on them, guide them in their development.

Obviously, there would be relationship issues from time to time. It's inevitable. But, even with more people to find issues with, there are more cool heads to help work these issues out. I can see less spouse abuse happening when there are others there to keep things below that level.

As far as the term "marriage", I don't care if you call it a mariage, or a family contract, or anything else. Just so the family unit gets to legally enjoy the benefits, and share in the responsibility.

There are issues that would have to be worked out between members of any particular family, such as bedroom issues, adding new wives/husbands, etc., but, as I said, these would be worked out individually. It depends on the people, and these issues would need to be discussed before entering into the marriage contract.

Property issues would be something else to cosider. Who owns what, who gets what if they leave the family, things like that would need to be worked out ahead of time. If property was owned by the family, it would stay in the family, so there would always be a home to raise the kids in.

All in all, I think it's a viable option. I know there are many who would object due to personal views or religious reasons, but they wouldn't be required to live any way they didn't want to. I think people in general have enough love in them to share it with more than one spouse at a time, and more love is always good, right?

Who knows, we might even end up with generations of better behaved, better prepared kids who would, in turn, be better behaved, better prepared adults.

So, what are your thoughts, ATS? Does it make sense to you? Are you disgusted by the very idea? Anywhere in between?

Discuss.




posted on Jul, 31 2011 @ 11:24 AM
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I think it is a wonderful idea, and in actuality, humans have only abandoned this type of societal unit in the past few centuries. Being isolated into small individual family units impairs human society from functioning at full potential.



posted on Jul, 31 2011 @ 03:50 PM
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reply to post by subject x
 


S & F

I have had very serious and deep discussions about this, and it actually would make more sense. Marriage is only the legal union (recognized by church and state) to share property, finances, and child rearing.

So why can't we do it in a more economical and stable way, ESPECIALLY for the children?

Its actually more 'natural' this way, honestly. Its done like this in the animal kingdom.

Its not natural to be monogamous, but we conform to that because of the 'church'.

Wow...very interesting topic!!!
edit on 31-7-2011 by ButterCookie because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 31 2011 @ 05:58 PM
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Originally posted by subject x
the idea of forming a larger family base, primarily for the purpose of providing a more stable base to raise children with (from?), This is, after all, the major purpose of any kind of marriage, isn't it?


...no... there are many successful marriages that have nothing to do with having / rearing children...


Originally posted by subject x
Yes, I know most of y'all are looking straight to the bedroom, but this isn't about that. Let's keep our minds out the gutter if we can. For now, anyway.


...are you saying that sex is gutterish or that married folks only have sex in their bedroom?...



Originally posted by subject x
We're all aware that there is an issue with child raising these days. There are a plethora of reasons for this, but many, I think, can be summed up under the heading of "not enough parents".


...no... its not the quantity of parents thats important... its the integrity of parents thats important...


Originally posted by subject x
In today's world, most families (that I know, anyway) need both parent's income to support their family, and still just scrape by. This leaves lots of under-supervised kids, not getting the attention required to raise them properly. There are plenty of other causes, too, such as irresponsible parents, substance abuse issues, and what not, but more parents would help with a lot of these, too.


...there are potential positives in group marriage but its naive to presume that it always leads to a stable environment...

...ahaha, stable environment - no pun was intended but thats how some group marriages really are... i've visited some who were more like a pig sty than a stable but i've seen the same in singular marriages too...


Originally posted by subject x
I can see less spouse abuse happening when there are others there to keep things below that level.


...again, you're working on the presumption that spousal abuse wouldnt be the accepted norm of the majority within the group marriage...


Originally posted by subject x
As far as the term "marriage", I don't care if you call it a mariage, or a family contract, or anything else. Just so the family unit gets to legally enjoy the benefits, and share in the responsibility.


...agreed...


Originally posted by subject x
There are issues that would have to be worked out between members of any particular family, such as bedroom issues, adding new wives/husbands, etc., but, as I said, these would be worked out individually. It depends on the people, and these issues would need to be discussed before entering into the marriage contract.


...depends upon the mindset of the people involved... in some cases not only is the concept of a contractual marriage offensive and/or unnecessary, discussing who has sex with whom and when is considered offensive because its indicative of a petty mind...


Originally posted by subject x
Property issues would be something else to cosider. Who owns what, who gets what if they leave the family, things like that would need to be worked out ahead of time. If property was owned by the family, it would stay in the family, so there would always be a home to raise the kids in.


...thats for folks who want to make their marriage all about kids and material possessions - and - the property decisions are really no different than the way a lot of singular marriage families have been for centuries...


Originally posted by subject x
I think people in general have enough love in them to share it with more than one spouse at a time,


...i think "people in general" is just too general...


...there are people who are incapable of loving themselves, much less loving one other person...


Originally posted by subject x
and more love is always good, right?


...depends upon context... a lot of people have a very warped concept of love... like the parent who beats their child black and blue, then justifies it by saying "i whipped him cuz i love him and i want him to grow up right"...


Originally posted by subject x
Who knows, we might even end up with generations of better behaved, better prepared kids who would, in turn, be better behaved, better prepared adults.


...in the best of circumstances - sure, thats a possibility...



posted on Jul, 31 2011 @ 07:32 PM
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It's a good idea in principle and I'm sure it could work for a lot of people but first, what if there was a jealousy issue for any reason? How about if someone else's child was raised by yourself with a certain view while they were working?

Lot of positives and a lot of negatives about this kind of thing and I guess when it comes down to it, it's all up to those wanting to get involved.



posted on Jul, 31 2011 @ 08:08 PM
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Morally there is nothing wrong with group marriages/polygamy/polyamory.



posted on Jul, 31 2011 @ 08:48 PM
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Thanks for the replies, y'all! As of yet, I haven't seen any real negatives mentioned. There will always be those who can't function well in any marriage, of course, and they would cause problems in a group marriage just as they do in a traditional one. There's no way around that, I guess, other than being a good judge of character.

Jealousy issues, as mentioned, would be a concern. However, if those involved know what they're getting into from the start, I think they could be kept to a minimum.

All in all, I think a group marriage would be a more stable base, financially and emotionally, to raise children with. I don't know if they're something I'll see in my lifetime, but if the economy continues to deteriorate, and people still want to breed, I see it as becoming necessary for many people to make raising a family viable.



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