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Intelligent Women Need A Polygamy Law.

Updated on July 21, 2013

A Hot Issue

I know that when one writes a piece over the borders of what is politically "safe" it is possible for some people to become very excited. I would ask readers to read the whole piece before exploding into anger.

I am now sixty years old. My wife and I have been together twentyfive years and it is unlikely that either of us will suggest we take a third partner. So there is no need for abuse there.

My motivation is to take an intelligent approach to some of society's problems. If you are religiously offended by any discussion of polygamy I respectfully suggest that you click off onto an advertisement or Amazon now before you become upset.

Books Around Polygamy

Historical Basis

The historical basis of polygamy works around three phenomena which have operated more or less continuously across time and across continents.

The first is that all societies have warfare theft and murder. Even though there are normally more boy babies than girl babies the effect of all this killing is that disproportionately more men are killed than women. So in most societies there are more women of marriageable age than men of marriageable age.

The second aspect is that there are in all societies disparities of wealth. There are many men who cannot afford to marry, and whom a woman would be foolish to marry. There are other men who can afford to support more than one sexual partner and all their children.

The third used to be a "given" but I am not sure is quite so given now. Women are predisposed to select a man who is capable of nurturing and supporting their joint children, whereas men are predisposed to have as much sex as they can and to be less fussy who they have sex with. This last is coming under pressure as with the availability of reliable contraception over several generations women are moving closer to promiscuity. But for sex intended to result in conception I think women still want a "good" man. There are also women who wish to bring up children without a man for various motivations.

The cumulative effect of all these three factors led to the existence of polygamy in most societies and in most religions. Christians today operate polygamy in Africa and in Pakistan. Chinese and Jews have operated polygamy. Muslims and Hindus still do. I am going to try to get through this article without mentioning a well known religion which originated in the USA who used to practice polygamy because their motivations were based on the word of God rather than upon economic or social forces.

A fourth factor was the powerlessness and poverty of many women who were forced into polygamy and concubinage through sheer poverty or through physical force. They were also forced into monagamy and into prostitution.

The Current Day

"Where Are All the Good Looking Solvent Men?" - "They All Have Boyfriends!"

Women generally now have a choice. They can simply say "No.". Often the variation is "I am not that desperate!"

Intelligent successful men in a generally monagamous society can have their pick.of prospective spouses. There are many more good and decent women than there are good and decent men.

A graduate woman wishes to have a man she can respect, someone of an equivalent or better education who is successful in his career. The successful man has a far wider pool to choose from because he often will prefer a woman who will look up to and adore him instead of a graduate woman who cannot stoop that low. The man also has a wider age cohort to select from because there are younger women entering the marriage market every day whereas for a woman the best men are being snapped up.

Add to this that a significant proportion of the male population are never going to be able to provide for a family, so many of "their" women are after better men, too.

So what can women do? Many women who would like a decent man and a family will not achieve their perfectly reasonable desire.

The Career Vice

Many women want to have a career. And they want to have children. And the two objectives make each objective more stressful. When your child is sick and you should be making a presentation in Dallas, which takes priority? Trying to balance all this is hugely tough for women. It isn't as hugely tough for men because they do not interrupt their careers to have babies and no-one expects them to damage their career by caring for sick children.

What every good woman needs is a wife!

If two or more intelligent women can bring themselves to share a man the benefits are enormous. There is usually one woman who finds it convenient to be the principal home maker. Much of the home making falls to her. She is the childcare backup for the other woman or women, who are able to pursue their careers more vigorously, bringing good incomes into the house. With several good incomes coming into the house the entire household can live better.

Experiments with animals have shown that a male who has multiple sexual opportunities is more sexually active than a male confined to one partner. This ought to extend to human males too. Provided the household is harmonious the male should be willing to be more active than he would be in a monagamous household. Given the sexual opportunities at home he is less likely to look for sexual partners outside the home.

Why Do We Need A Law?

There will be disputes and issues and unhappy situations. While in theory it could be covered by a series of written contracts it makes sense for there to be law covering the situations that will arise. With several health insurance schemes and several pension schemes it is important for there to be clarity as to who is a "wife". The "de facto" relationship will be stronger if it is "de jure" as well.

In most polygamous societies there is a pecking order where Wife No i is normally superior to Wife No 2. A co-operative sororial approach may be more appropriate for our society.

It takes a real man to dominate his wives, but is domination needed? A co-operative approach can extend to the men as well. If Carol says it's Betty's turn then it is Betty's turn.

The men can share the breadwinning, and they can share the economic and social power that breadwinning currently gives them. Its win win for everyone except the losers.

The Losers

There are millions of men who contribute nothing to society and who contribute nothing to a relationship. Some women are with them because they cannot get a better man. If all the better men have multiple wives some of the men at the bottom of the Darwinian heap will not have the opportunity to breed. I cannot see that as bad.


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    • ElderYoungMan profile image


      6 years ago from Worldwide

      @Charles-Sorry I missed your question. Adam's first wife was Lilith. I wrote a hub about her and how the bible shows two incarnations of women. Adam had a total of 3 wives. Lilith, an unnamed second wife and finally Eve, who the Father took from Adam's own body.


    • glendoncaba profile image


      6 years ago from Somewhere in the hubverse

      Polygamy is indeed the lesser of two evils when we look at the disastrous effects of unregulated multiple partner relationships.

      I wonder though if warfare and economic stress are the main factors, or is it all about the sexual appetite of the male plus the need for a large clan to do labour intensive activities such as farming.

    • Charles James profile imageAUTHOR

      Charles James 

      6 years ago from Yorkshire, UK

      Who was?

    • ElderYoungMan profile image


      6 years ago from Worldwide

      Eve wasn't Adam's first wife. FYI.

    • Charles James profile imageAUTHOR

      Charles James 

      6 years ago from Yorkshire, UK

      From what I can gather there was no warfare or economic stress in Eden - so no need for polygamy.

    • glendoncaba profile image


      6 years ago from Somewhere in the hubverse

      I have given this subject a lot of thought and have concluded that the Edenic model is monogamous though fraught with post-Eden problems. In other words, monogamy was invented in Paradise and we need all the institutions of the perfect order, such as Sabbath, and the spiritually nurturing home, in order to survive outside of Paradise.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Interesting thoughts. Most of your assumptions about the ratio men/women in the world I believe are wrong, as are the assumptions on what basis men and women choose partners. But I agree that the small familily unit is in trouble, and that the solution is to make bigger units - of all kinds: polygamy, polyandry,polyamory relationships or quite simply collectives.

    • ElderYoungMan profile image


      6 years ago from Worldwide

      On the religious objection, nothing in the Mosaic laws prohibited polygamous matrimony. Polygamy was based on a man's ability to support and provide for a wife and was in that way, kind of akin to social security. Modern Christianity is heavily influenced by Greek and Roman society. These societies were know for their homosexual leaning. Men in these societies had one wife and boyfriends, having sexual intercourse with both....Call it Constantine's revision of the Judao-Christian doctrine. In America, even if there were a law, people are so selfish and deviant, that the intelligence you've outlined as a requirement is out the door before you even get to the logic of multiple consenting adults, living together for mutual benefit. The only restriction in scripture is for men of the cloth.



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