Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Lies and Polygyny

My feet are killing me today. I am wearing my new heels to work and it might just be that they will die off before the end of the day.
Besides this very interesting news, I am doing great. I saw a beautiful autumn landscape. Trees with deep red, yellow and green colors, combined in such a wonderful fashion with a light blue sky at the background, it just made my heart melt. Were it not for a few buildings popping up in between, your usual electricity lines, it would have been perfect, absolutely perfect. Man built structures just mess up the scenery if you ask me..

I posted about my issues with secrecy and how it makes me sad when I think of having kids. It made me think about what’s the hardest thing about polygyny. Polygyny issues are really not that much about jealousy at the end I’d say. I mean, ok, so Mr.Hubby sleeps with three other women. Do I think about this? No, I don’t.
I did in the beginning. I wondered how it was possible for him to love more than one woman at the same time. I wondered how he could share such intimacies and not be a liar to someone. I wondered if he compared us to one another. But I noticed that he actually really doesn’t have these issues - when he’s with me, he’s with me. It was me who was concerned with the other wives, he was genuinely concerned with me. Once I understood that his feelings were true, and that he had good intentions, the whole intimacy thing wasn’t on my mind anymore.

A big problem in polygyny is lies. Husbands that lie to their wives. Mr.Hubby and 2nd lied to 1st. As I wrote before, 1st came with the idea of 2nd marrying Mr.Huby, but had a lot of difficulties once it actually happened. So often they lied about whether or not they saw each other, how often Mr.Hubby came by, whether or not 2nd bought nice clothes, whether or not she bought Mr.Hubby presents.
Even though they got past that point now, it’s still something 1st can become upset about when she thinks of it. She told me once that she surprised 2nd by coming to her home with a cake – as a girlfriend thing – let’s have a chocolate rush and watch a soap together – then she found that there were candles lit up everywhere and 2nd was acting all nervous. This while Mr.Hubby said he was going to visit a male friend of his.

It’s painful to have to deal with lies. However, had 1st been truly accepting of 2nd having a relationship with Mr.Hubby there would have been no need to lie at the first place. 1st would demand from 2nd to give up her rights on time because they were close friends and because 2nd knew 1st needed Mr.Hubby and the kids needed their dad. If 2nd dressed up 1st would blame her for trying to attract the attention of Mr.Hubby while he needed to keep his focus on his family. It was no way of living life would 2nd and Mr.Hubby have done everything 1st had demanded. So can one blame Mr.Hubby and 2nd? I don’t know. Maybe they lied too often at times, maybe 2nd wasn’t considerate enough of 1st and was at times just plain selfish at wanting time with Mr.Hubby and then lied to make it possible. Blame is surely on both sides..

I think lies make it hard to make polygyny work. Any polygny blog you read – lies is what most often results in problems. Once lies are not an issue, as I’d say they are not anymore in our family, it’s gets easier.. So at first all need to be on board, truly on board, with a new wife. Then there needs to be honesty.


Safiyyah said...

Hello Dear:

I could love more than one man at a time. I did it plenty of times before I was a Muslim and was in the "dating scene". It's not difficult.

The only difference between "dating" and "plural marriage" I think is the commitment.

As to 1st, 2nd, and hubby ... well, I think that the man has the lion share of responsibility in a plural marriage situation. Why does everyone give 1st such power? I think her husband should have dealt with it directly.

Donald said...

I like that you followed the posts about secrecy outside the marriage with the topic of secrecy and lies within the marriage itself. I agree, this is a more serious issue in any marriage (polygamous or monogamous), because at its heart, your covenant is not with society, or even with your extended family (as important as they may be). Your covenant is with your husband or wife. It's they you made your promises too, and a promise means very little if the person making it is not trustworthy. Lies break trust, and without trust you cannot give yourself fully to your spouse. Fear and mistrust destroy intimacy.

Dale Kemp said...

Wow, great post. So very insightful. I think that's the whole reason that a lie is a sin. It hurts others and it wrecks marriages. To lie to your spouse is probably the most damaging thing you can do to a marriage.

I love your blog. Please don't stop writing.

egianqueen said...


The lies is what does the most damage. And unfortunately men who are unable to take a stand and put their foot down. My 'co-wife' calls the shots - yes they have children - but I am living in a foreign country - I moved from Canada to Egypt - so I do believe that I need him around just as much as she does as she is living in her home country surrounded by family. I think the time needs to be divided equally - and it is not - he is always having to head home to see to the kids on our days - his kids are not little - they are 18, 16, and 11 - so certainly old enough to 'get' that daddy has another wife - but they are not 'forced' to face up to it - daddy does the dance around the issue and I end up getting hurt and upset - but such is the life I have chosen. Would be so much easier if everyone could be honest and above board about the situation.

UmmAbdur-Rahmaan said...

Lies suck. I am not sure I will ever get over the lies. Sometimes they sneak up, tap me on the shoulder and say "Hey Remember when..." I try to forget them though...it is easier that way...but I am always questioning him thinking he is lying about something...I know that is wrong but I still do it. I don't tell him I think he is lying but I think it alot.....

JohnLester said...

There should be no "ranking" of wives.

I intend to practice polygyny in the future, and I don't intend to number my wives.

There is only 1 flesh.

new#3 said...

Lying hurts everyone involved, especially in a marriage.
Unfortunately, sometimes it seems that some people beg to be lied to (not saying this is the case with the first wife here).

3rd... said...

@saffiyah - it seems impossible to me to really love more than one man at the same time, i figured men were made differently than women in this respect, but I guess it's possible for women as well.. :)

@donald - it's really true what you said, without trust you cannot give yourself fully to your spouse - lies take away the foundations of a relationship, everything becomes uncertain, you don't know who you are dealing with anymore.. very true

@dale kemp - thanks.. ;)

@egianqueen - I think it must be very hard to live in a foreign country, second wife, being kept a secret - that's hard in your own country as well, but then at least you have the social network to help out, lift you up, socialize with..

@ua-r - exactly, it just keep creeping back up and messes with your head. Lies have such a long-lasting ripple effect. It's the evil one coming back and rubbing it in your face trying to get you to start doubting so he can come in your hart and destroy every little bit of love you have.

@johnlester - your comment deserves a whole new post.. :) I don't really agree with your statement, maybe I'll write more about that

@new#3 - it's true what you said, and I actually think that they had to lie to 1st; maybe the extent of it was exaggerated at times. She just wasn't able to cope, it just ripped her apart to see them becoming intimate. To an extent you have to put your foot down, and Mr.Hubby might have tried to do that more. But it's hard when you see the person you love being torn apart by what you are demanding...

JohnLester said...

It's not *my* statement.

It's Scripture's statement.

I have very few statements of my own...

Anonymous said...

#3rd says:

"@new#3 - it's true what you said, and I actually think that they had to lie to 1st; maybe the extent of it was exaggerated at times. She just wasn't able to cope, it just ripped her apart to see them becoming intimate. To an extent you have to put your foot down, and Mr.Hubby might have tried to do that more. But it's hard when you see the person you love being torn apart by what you are demanding..."

Wait a minute - just because someone "begs to be lied to" (which is not a objective perception when it belongs to the liar) doesn't justify the liar's lies. It doesn't absolve the liar from his/her sin. BTW, if anyone's forgotten, lying IS A SIN.

If you really care about someone you don't lie to them. IMO liars are no better than thieves and those who lie for personal gain are even worse. They lack integrity and personify selfishness.

Mr Hubby's "demands" for his own emotional/sexual satisfaction despite the impact it would have on his wife was very selfish and disrespectful. I wouldn't blame the poor woman for never trusting him and her ever again. Being lied has the emotional equivalency of feeling like a piece of fecal matter.

Black is black, white is white and a lie is a lie no matter how you try and justify it.

To be lied to means that you are not respected.