Monday, April 13, 2009

Polygyny Hardships

I came across another polygyny blog Polygamy411, from a first wife, Muslim family, and the story could not be more different from Megan's... Any man considering taking up a second wife, I would strongly advise you to read this blog - all its entries - as it will give you an idea of why I keep repeating that polygyny is hard, and the multiple s.exual partners really doesn't compensate for its burdens.
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Just a very tiny exceprt from a blog with numerous posts filled with similar pain and devastation:
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My calls to Alex during his nights with Carolinah went from pitiful to hateful. That is what I did every night on her nights. I left terrible, profane, abusive messages for Alex. He always answered the phone and spoke with me until my conversation went from being cordial to offensive.
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Similar things happened with 1st in the initial phase of my marriage to Mr.Hubby.. she used to call in the morning - sometimes him - sometimes me - argue over the weirdest things. Sometimes she would call during the night, sobbing on the phone.. She went through similar feelings when 2nd en 4th entered. It always made me wonder whether I needed to step out of the marriage. I was wondering whether I was really being a good believer by staying while I knew she was in such pain. And 2nd was in a lot of pain as well when I entered though she didn't call on my nights, we argued whenever we met, and she argued and screamed and yelled at Mr.Hubby as well. It just made me wonder whether this was all really meant to be.
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Mr.Hubby always said to give it time, to be understanding and forgiving for everything, to try and be sisters to each other.. He pushed us to keep communicating. He was more on top of the situation than Alex in the Polygamy411 blog. And here the role of the husband becomes very evident:
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So one evening while having a pleasant conversation with Alex, he said he would be away on a business trip for a few days. I said, Oh, OK, so you’ll be back home such and such a day. (He was scheduled to be with Carolinah for the next three nights before his business trip. So I surmised that upon his return from the three day trip, he’d be with me three nights.) To my surprise, the date he said he’d be back was like nine days later. That just didn’t add up to me…Three days with Carolinah, three days business trip, back to me. I asked, “Are you telling me that I lose my days, as you’ll be on a business trip when I’m scheduled? He said, “Yes.”
Naturally, I totally lost it, freeeeked right on out! I said, “No. After the business trip you come back here for my three days. I asked, “Are you crazy?” He said he didn’t know. He seemed very sincere. I said, “If you can’t figure out a simple schedule, you don’t need to be in polygamy.” He said he didn’t try to take my days deliberately. He just didn’t know how it was supposed to work. He said he went online to try to find out, but there wasn’t a whole lot of information out there about it. I yelled, “Well yeah, that’s because there’s not a whole lot of people out there doing it!”
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A husband needs to be on top of the situation.
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10 comments:

Ana said...

As Salaamu Alaikum,Sister

I was checking out your very nice site, which is very informative and resourceful.

I am very appreciative and thank you very much for coming to visit me over at www.polygamy411.com. Thank you for saying such nice things about my blog on your site. You are a true sister.

Please let me know if there is anything that I can do to help you. It would be my pleasure. I pray Allah continues to bless you imensely.

I pray Allah allows our sites to be a means to help sisters and brothers survive polygamy and accept Allah's decision, whatever it might be.

Visit me again and I'll visit you, as well, Insha Allah.

Sister Ana

Donald said...

3rd, good on you for keeping things balanced by following up Megan's 'fairy tale' with Ana's 'nightmare'. I expect the venonymouses will be hear shortly with their 'I told you sos'.

Ana, my heart goes out to you, but if I can be bold enough to speak plainly, I think you've missed the point. I don't wish to put words in 3rd's mouth, but I've been reading her blog for a while and I don't think her goal is to 'survive polygamy'. I think she wants a great deal more than that. If you see yourself as the victim, and survival as your only goal, then that is the best you should ever expect.

For me, this line from your blog sums it up:

'I never really had any expectations of polygamy for me, other than knowing it would be a living nightmare.'

I'm sure it sounds presumptuous of me to speak about these things, since I'm neither Muslim nor in a polygamous marriage, but I do believe there are some universal principles of life that apply here. Your attitudes and expectations shape your potential (or lack thereof).

Let me share from my own life… A few years into my marriage, my wife and I had real problems. In counseling, it came out that she had even considered leaving me. How could this be? I was committed to the marriage! I knew we had problems, but I wasn't about to run away. I was going to survive marriage! I was committed for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and health, blah, blah, blah! But then a truth hit me between the eyes… Was I committed to making our marriage survive, or was I committed to making it better? Richer? Healthier?

How about you Ana? How do you see yourself and your marriage? Are you endlessly treading water to keep from drowning, or are you swimming for shore? It's a long way but I think your husband wants to go with you. How can he do that when you won't even let him talk to you about the reality of your marriage (based on your latest post)? Read Megan's Polyblog. There is hope, but you must choose to keep hope alive.

One last thing that struck me about your story. You say your husband 'didn’t try to take [your] days deliberately. He just didn’t know how it was supposed to work.' It sounds like he wants things to be better, but he's not taking responsibility for his own failure to lead in a loving way. How is it 'supposed to work'? Forgive my being presumptuous again, but that sounds like the question of a very legalistic man.

Forgive me also for finishing with a quote from the Bible. I know you are Muslim, but there is truth in these words that can turn around your marriage if you and your husband let it. Legalism and my personal rights must bow to a greater principle if joy is to be found in marriage. These words are often quoted in Christian marriages — if only we lived by them!!

'If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.'

'Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.'

'Love never fails.'

new#3 said...

Thank you 3rd for leading us to Ana's blog, I am going to go read more. You know how I feel about the difficulties, perhaps I can help her, perhaps not.

CM said...

Third,

There is quite a contrast between Megan's and Ann's marriages, but sadly, I think Ana is the norm, not Megan. For most women polygamy is extremely hard and evokes many negative emotions.

I think that is why you get so many negative comments from others. They are just reacting to their own negative emotions evoked by the thought of living polygamy. It's just too bad they choose to spew their venom instead of trying to learn from others.

Excellent comment Donald, and very wise! We all can learn from your words. I especially love the quote from the Bible. If only we all lived by those words. What a wonderful world it would be to live in.

CM

أم ترافيس said...

WOW ;D

Ma shaa Allah

Amazing insight... I enjoyed the post and the comments.

May Allah make it easy for all you sisters, ameen

Donald said...

Thanks CM. You know, when you say 'we all can learn from your words', that includes me. When I write, I'm also reminding and encouraging myself to live what I believe. My marriage and my life is a very long way from perfect. If I had the courage of 3rd, Ana and others to open my life up to you guys, you'd probably be appalled by some of it. But by God's grace I'm learning and growing.

3rd... said...

I really think Ana deserves props for her honesty.. sharing all the nasty things we do out of desperation, anger, pain is not easy, even when it's in cyberworld. Its not easy because we don't like to admit to ourselves how terrible we can be...

Donald said...

True. It's great that you ladies have this wonderful online community where you can encourage one another. You also deserve props for so warmly accepting people like me and CM who like to offer our 'wisdom' without truly knowing what it is to walk in your shoes. I do love you all though, and I can definitely feel the love in CM's posts too.

Ana said...

Hi Donald,

I read your comment that you left for me. It touched a lot of nerves.

No! I cannot talk with my husband about his other wife now under any condition or circumstance. Whenever I speak to him about her in a roundabout way, my blood pressure rise and it takes everything within my being not to freak right on out.

For me, it is best that I leave them in their own world far away from me right now.

You have given me much to think about and I appreciate it greatly.

Let's stay in touch...

Donald said...

Thank you Ana. I've responded on your blog.