Toxic monogamy culture


This has been going around on FB lately, mostly posted by 20-something women. I don’t really see it as a gender-specific paradigm but it has a lot in common with women’s paradigms I first started looking at, maybe 40 years ago, with a jaundiced eye. In my generation there have always been women (no matter how hip or how liberated or how anything who have displayed some maddening attitudes about romance and relationships…the chief ingredient in all of it being that men and women are ADVERSARIES even in love.

I’ll just put this here and see what y’all think.

Characteristics of toxic monogamy culture

  • the normalization of jealousy as an indicator of love
  • the idea that a sufficiently intense love is enough to overcome any practical incompatibilities
  • the idea that you should meet your partner’s every need, and if you don’t, you’re either inadequate or they’re too needy
  • the idea that a sufficiently intense love should cause you to cease to be attracted to anyone else
  • the idea that commitment is synonymous with exclusivity
  • the idea that marriage and children are the only valid teleological justifications for being committed to a relationship
  • the idea that your insecurities are always your partner’s responsibility to tip-toe around and never your responsibility to work on
  • the idea that your value to a partner is directly proportional to the amount of time and energy they spend on you, and it is in zero-sum competition with everything else they value in life
  • the idea that being of value to a partner should always make up a large chunk of how you value yourself


At first this kind of works but that falls apart very quickly and ends up in feelings of rejection.

I wish I could go back in time and tell myself not to let prudish people and church morality shame me out of my sexual wants and needs.


^^^ this


This topic has not been as popular as I expected.


I’m not at all sure what a “women’s paradigm” is, so I don’t really know how to react to the op.


What if your partner creates those insecurities?


Another toxic scenario.

Even so, these insecurities would not be fixed unless the owner of them does the work. This I know.


To be honest, I’m sick to fucking death of the self analyzation. There’s always someone out there who has thought about it and wants us to be aware of “toxic” behaviours. No wonder we’re so neurotic!


So you pretend like you don’t care until you stop caring?


Quite the opposite.


Then I don’t know how that works.


You have to accept that the bullshit in your head is there for a reason, and that it is a part of you now. As you accept it, you can become aware of its effect more quickly and it over time loses its hold.

PTSD, anxieties, they don’t go away, they just fade to the background. It is ever and always a journey and never a destination.

Talking makes it more real than keeping it in, which helps a lot, just make damn sure you trust the person. This I also know from good and bad experience.


I never seemed to get to that point in my personal self help journey.


Which point?


Where it fades into the background.


Agreed. Too much introspection is a bad thing.


Good stuff, especially “the idea that being of value to a partner should always make up a large chunk of how you value yourself”.


I don’t know where the line is between too much introspection and not enough. I think maybe it’s a word choice, and my words are “self-absorption” and maybe “blame-shifting.” (since there isn’t a really good single word for needing others to validate us.)

In a larger view, I think the problems people have in primary relationships stem from two areas.

  1. The dissonance between choosing either (A) being in it for what it’s going to give ME or (B) being in for what I can give THEM.

  2. The entire issue of TRUST, which is not just about honesty but also about motivation.

The OP doesn’t speak of “women’s paradigms” so you can safely consider it without being sidetracked by my historical musings.


This is what I was referring to. I wasn’t sure what your point was.


It is a slower process than you will want. It is for me… let it be what it is, which is pretty much the mantra for the whole thing anyway.