In Washington State, the voters passed Referendum 71, which affirmed the previously enacted extensions to the Domestic Partnership Act. I wrote about the first installment of that below and stated some poblems, many of which still haunt the laws. I will write more on Referendum 71 in a little bit.
I have been asked to write about marriage more. Interesting that a blog about sex-positivity should move in that direction. To me, marriage is not at all a holy or sacred thing. It is not about children and procreation. It is not about sex or love. Why do I say this? Because that's what the law says:
Marriage is like taking a mortgage loan, except that the law mandates a gender binary. The Revised Code of Washington says nothing about religion, love, sex, procreation or romance between the individuals. That's all made up.
"Oh but what about the kids" I hear the voices screaming. Child custody is a whole separate thing. Parenting is an obligation that exists without marriage, and that survives a dissolution. You can divorce your spouse, but you cannot divorce your co-parent. The same is true of any parenting situation. If you contribute egg or sperm, you are legally responsible...married or not. I get that this is a vast oversimplification, but there are lots of people who write about child custody and obligations.
What about religion, love, sex and romance? Why are those even part of the discussion? Short answer...and this is where you all get to say stuff...is that those things are added to each individual marriage contract by the parties. You heard me right...every marriage can be whatever the parties declare it to be, so long as they are each eighteen or older and of opposite genders. Like any contract there are limits, and you can go study them in the Restatement of Contracts at your local law library. Judges tend to get uncomforatable around these kinds of agreements...prenups and postnups and so forth...but they exist.
Bottom line, there are structures for that. All of it. It takes creativity and sometimes money, but it can be done. I call it "Life Planning" and have used that term for many years to describe the steps I like to take people through when they imagine coming together.
One of the first steps..."know thyself." David Schnarch calls it "individuation" and writes eloquently about it. Passionate Marriage: Keeping Love and Intimacy Alive in Committed Relationships
His perspective is monogomist, and wise.
About love...mixed with a bit of Christianity but with reasoanble restraint...The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts is Gary Chapman's system for feeding your partner(s) "love tank."
That's a start. On with 2010.