For most people, marriage means monogamy. Even the suggestion of seeing other people or the hint of an affair would be a deal breaker for many and could ultimately result in divorce.
However, marriage and monogamy do not necessarily have to go hand in hand. In September this year, Will Smith revealed in an interview with GQ, that he and his wife Jada Pinkett Smith had made the decision to no longer be monogamous.
“There were significant endless discussions about, what is relational perfection? What is the perfect way to interact as a couple?” Will Smith explained in the November issue of GQ. “And for the large part of our relationship, monogamy was what we chose, not thinking of monogamy as the only relational perfection.”
“Jada never believed in conventional marriage… Jada had family members that had an unconventional relationship. So she grew up in a way that was very different than how I grew up.”
Although Will Smith does not elaborate on exactly when they made this decision, it seems it may have occurred after a fight in 2011 following Jada’s 40th birthday.
For Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith, it seems that the choice not to be monogamous has resulted in the couple remaining together and as strong as ever.
“I don’t suggest this road for anybody. But the experiences that the freedoms that we’ve given one another and the unconditional support, to me, is the highest definition of love.”
Does marriage have to be synonymous with monogamy?
For some people, the ideas of marriage and monogamy are so intertwined, that seeing other people would mean the end of the relationship and ultimately divorce.
For others, marriage does not have to mean exclusivity to one single person for the rest of your life.
What is most important is that both parties agree and are happy. As Will Smith himself admits when he says that he doesn’t “suggest this road for anybody”, this is not going to work for every – or even most – couples.
To make any marriage work, monogamous or not, communication is the crucial element.
If you would like to discuss any legal issues relating to your marriage or divorce, get in touch to book your free consultation with one of our experienced family lawyers today.