Is an Open Marriage Anyone Else's Business?

Gillian Sisley

A viral Reddit post asks this very question.

Open marriage is not a new concept, but it is certainly one that is being talked about more openly in the media and in everyday conversations. An open marriage is characterized as a married couple who are not monogamous. They have an agreement that they can see other people while still remaining committed to their marriage.

Every couple is different, and they come up with very different rules for what an open marriage agreement can look like. Some married couples only allow for one-night stands, while other couples may allow for dating. Ultimately, the terms of the agreement are made and agreed upon by the parties involved in the open marriage.

It is easily said that open marriage is not an arrangement for everyone (in fact, 89% of Americans claim to be monogamous). However, for a couple who may choose to be in an open marriage, there is the potential of being highly judged or criticized by those in their life who do not agree with that sort of lifestyle.

This is exactly the case with a recent viral Reddit post, where a married couple came clean to their religious family about their open marriage agreement.

Anything could be going on behind closed doors.

In the viral Reddit post that was published January 20th by user u/ThrowAwatOpen, which has already received 12,000 upvotes and 1,500 comments, the author explains that he has an open marriage with his wife.

The couple chose to keep the status of their marriage, as well as many other elements of their relationship, a secret from the wife's very religious family. However, things got tricky when someone from the wife's family caught the husband at a bar with another woman.

He goes on to explain that he was "outed for cheating" on his wife at a baby shower, and his wife didn't stick up for him. Upset by these accusations, the husband told his in-laws that they were in an open marriage and left the party.

Once the couple were in the car, the wife told her husband that he had betrayed her trust, while the husband accused her of making him out as a cheater rather than telling her family the truth.

Whose business is someone else's marriage anyways?

Data shows that about 4%-9% of Americans participate in open relationships, so this sort of arrangement isn't unheard of. That said, matters within a marriage are no one else's business other than those involved in the marriage itself.

Marriage is already difficult and complicated enough without external pressures. In a survey of married people, the biggest stressor in marriages was found to be finances (36%), while the second-largest stressor was family at 13%.

The author of The Reddit post finished his story by writing that he was sleeping on the couch, because his wife was still mad at him.

What do you think? Was the husband out of line for telling his side of the story and outing his marriage as an open one? Or was the wife in the wrong for not stepping in and standing up to her family on behalf of her husband?

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