Is an Open Marriage an Alternative to Divorce?

JACKSON, Mississippi. Infidelity can break a marriage. Yet, infidelity, whether it is physical or emotional, is actually quite common. According to CNN, as many as 40 percent of married individuals have admitted to either physical or emotional infidelity. As many as 60 percent of men and 40 percent of women admit to having an affair. Some married couples have decided that if affairs are so common, perhaps monogamy should not be the goal. The issue of infidelity in a marriage can be approached from many directions. The New York Times reports that some married couples are choosing to open up their marriages to allow one or both partners to explore being with other people, while also preserving the primary bond of the marriage. But what happens if you learn your partner cheated and now wants an open marriage instead of divorce? And what happens when one partner wants an open marriage and the other partner wants divorce? If you are struggling with the question of whether to divorce or whether to open up your marriage, it is important to be informed about your options and to be honest with yourself. The divorce attorneys at Malouf & Malouf in Jackson, Mississippi can review your situation and help you understand the financial and legal implications of divorce. A couple’s counselor can help you navigate whether an open marriage is right for you. The reality is that an open marriage requires a great deal of honesty. Open marriages involve a great deal of trust, and if one partner in a marriage is already considering divorce, then an open marriage isn’t likely to work. According to Psychology Today, if a partner cheats first and then asks for an open marriage, that could be a major red flag because it indicates that communication may have already broken down, and communication is the foundation of any successful open marriage. Even in the best of circumstances, where both parties trust one another and can communicate openly, an open marriage can be challenging. And yet, if a couple can work through the betrayals of infidelity and come together to their marriage and to the idea of an open marriage with trust and mutual respect, anything is possible. A writer for the New York Times, who interviewed several couples in open marriages found that some initiated their open marriages after physical infidelity, some initiated the open marriage after emotional infidelity took place, and others initiated their open marriages to explore alternatives to monogamy. Yet, for an open marriage to work, it must be a mutual decision. If you know your marriage is over and it is just your partner who is asking for an open marriage, then it might be time to explore divorce. The divorce attorneys at Malouf & Malouf in Jackson, Mississippi, can help you understand your rights and you navigate this difficult process. Whether you have questions about division of property or child custody, our firm can help.   Malouf & Malouf, PLLC 501 E Capitol St. Jackson, MS 39201 Phone Number: (601) 522-2222
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