Monogamy at a Distance

What is monogamy?

Monogamy: The practice or condition of having a single sexual partner during a period of time.

This definition is vague of course and could be taken in many different ways.  Most definitions contain some form of marriage or union, but I believe the definition above has a lot of merit in society today.

A long distance monogamous relationship between two people is the topic I find interesting and touches close to home for me.  I am currently in a long distance relationship, and I enjoying the aspect of the relationship that is built on trust, communication, and personal feelings for one another.

I have asked myself several questions since it first began.

1)      Can you consider a relationship monogamous without having sex?

2)      Is a monogamous relationship natural?

3)       Is it possible to have a monogamous relationship with thousands of miles between the two people?

My first thought, based solely on the multiple definitions, is yes but it requires the people to be married. Then the realization is you can’t.  I mean a relationship without the intent of sex is not a monogamous relationship but rather a close friendship.  There is a natural urge for humans to indulge in sexual activity.

This leads to my next question, is monogamy in a relationship natural?  The anatomy of the human bodies tells us that we were not built for monogamy.  The thought of multiple partners seems like something that will satisfy, but with it comes stress.  This can be in the form of STIs, the burden of multiple relationships, or questions of paternity (for men).  The reason for monogamous relationships is to build a secure, emotionally stable, and happy life.  While it may unnatural, there are benefits to monogamous relationships and they can have positive effects on your life.

Since there is a lot of an emphasis on physical touch and sexual contact, is it even possible to have a monogamous relationship with someone when you cannot see or touch them?  It seems like an impossible task to be faithful to someone who is extremely far away.  The natural urges that cause people to feel temptation, the lack of physical/sexual contact, and the stress of life are all problems that must be addressed when looking at a long distance relationship.

A good monogamous relationship is built on the grounds of strong understanding, trust, communication, personal connection, and of course some type of sexual connection.  Building a relationship with all of these values is hard even when two people see each other on a regular basis.  Long distance relationships take away the physical connection and makes things even more difficult.  While this may seem like a hindrance, it actually puts more emphasis the other key components of a monogamous relationship.

Sex complicates things.  A relationship built on sex can only last so long before the “fire” goes out.  This is why I think a long distance monogamous relationship is a plausible concept.  The connection built between people who have not had sexual relations can only be based on the two personalities. As a couple maintains trust, communication, and commitment to one another, it builds a healthy mental relationship (if their personalities are compatible). The mental connection between the couple leads to the feeling of security and emotional stability, which are benefits gained from the monogamous relationship.  There still must be a physical aspect to a monogamous relationship (even a long distance one), but you can build the foundation for an amazing relationship from a distance.

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About teterpanda

I like comics, anime, sports, motorcycles, and food.
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5 Responses to Monogamy at a Distance

  1. I think the question of “What is a long distance relationship?” is an interesting one. My first thought is that this must be something that is a product of our modern life. Because we have various kinds of telecommunication at our disposal we can have social relations with people who are not present.

    But then I changed my mind. It must have been in the case that, in the past, people would establish relationships that would become interrupted for some reason. There was the expectation that the relationship would continue in the absence of regular contact.

    Do you think that the romantic lives we lead now might be basically the same as they were in the past? Or have things really changed in some fundamental way?

    • teterpanda says:

      I think romance has not changed much if any over the years. I like the point you make about continuing a relationship when the one person is absent. In past men would go off to war or to another nation to make alliances etc, or the woman will go back home when a parent was sick or something of that nature and the relationship was still going on. I think this is because it was the social norm and divorce was not really “accepted”, and it could have been because the two people really loved each other. To day it is similar but people leave for different reasons. The point about the different forms of communication is very important but it is still no substitute for actual contact.

  2. mziar001 says:

    A long distance relationship is possible but can be very complicated and stressful if trust, communication, and commitment are lacking; as you explained. Eventually, there must be some contact to fulfill the physical contact to fulfill our natural sexual desires.
    Military members must maintain a long distance relationships due to deployments; in the case that the member is married. On the other hand, the divorce rate in the military is slightly higher than the national average due to stressful long distance commitments that push couples apart at times. But, these are just statistics and one can’t be a number, everyone has their own unique situation.

    • teterpanda says:

      Slightly is not the word when it comes to military divorce rate. The long distance is a problem but only if you let it be. I have been in a relationship for a while with someone who lives almost 4000 miles away. She lived in the area man years ago and moved away. We made contact and decided we wanted to have a relationship, but she is very adamant about not coming here to live (at least for a few more years), and I haven’t seen her in person for over a year, and things are fine between us. In fact the only thing I think she has been mad at me about is me falling a sleep before we can talk at night. I would like to think that if people want something enough that they can achieve it. Relationships fail for many reasons one of which is that they are unsure in the first place. Many of my military friends married the person they were with because they wanted to be with them and that was the only way to really relocate the significant other. The problem is unless you figure out what you want you can not be sure the person you like/love right now is the person that will make you happy for the years to come.

      This is to ahowa015 and mziar001

  3. ahowa015 says:

    I always think that this is an interesting topic, especially for most college students. At the time when some people come to college, they have a girlfriend or boyfriend that did not come to school with them and many time it does not work. I think that the age and state of mind for some of these people and the relationship that they have are major factors as to why it does or doesn’t work.
    Furthermore, my father was in the navy and often had to deploy on cruises. While this often did put a strain on my parents, they had a strong enough relationship so that the time apart did not ruin it. It does make me think of the role of my brother, sister and I, not saying that my parents would not have been successful in their distance but we probably were factors. More so, it makes me wonder about other military relationships that endure deployments because not all of them are successful in staying together.

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