Polygamy vs. Monogamy

Essay by paigenicole11College, UndergraduateA, November 2011

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In our society monogamous relationships are what we find common. But in other cultures or societies they believe differently. For example: Polygamy. Polygamy refers to a type of marriage where there is going to be more than one spouse, but most of the time this is going to mean more than one wife (University of Montreal). These two types of marriages are the typical heterosexual marriage arrangements that exist in the world today. For most people in other countries a monogamous marriage is the norm while the traditional African and Muslim cultures favor the polygamous setting. Once a woman marries in to a polygamous family the man may already have married two, three, or four other women. He has probably already had children with the other women, so really the "new" wife that will be marrying the man could already have a family of twelve, thirteen, or more by the time they tie the knot.

A polygamy ceremony is performed in a "Sealing Room," a room that has an altar in the center of it and has kneeling cushions on each side. At the head of the altar there are two seats for the "Witnesses," their signatures will appear on the temple's marriage certificate (Belien). Others attending the ceremony stand about the room on either side of the altar. The Officiator who performs the sealing stands at the head of the altar. A monogamous ceremony is similar. The bride walks down the aisle, stands (instead of kneeling) in front of the groom, the officiator says a few words and then they are officially married.

If a polygamous couple decides to get a divorce it isn't much different than a monogamous couple getting a divorce. Polygamous divorce is normal. It involves hurt feelings, conflict, difficulties co-parenting, and children acting out...