How to Talk to Your Kids About Polygamy
As a parent, it is important to have open conversations with your children about complex topics like polygamy. If you and your spouse are planning on opening up your marriage to a sister wife and pursuing polygamy, you will need to explain to your kids what this means for them and the family as a whole.
Talking about polygamy can be daunting, but there are helpful tips you can use to make the conversation easier for both parties.
- It is important to understand why you want to pursue polygamy in the first place and the reasons behind the decision. Knowing your motives and being prepared to discuss them with your kids will help you explain why this change is happening.
- Explain the concept of polygamy in a way that is relatable and age-appropriate for each child. It can be helpful to talk about the historical context of polygamy and how it has been accepted by many different cultures over time. You should also be open to discussing what other families do when considering their marital dynamics. It is important to make sure your kids understand that all family members are still part of the same unit, no matter what changes come along in terms of structure or relationship status
- Explain your stance and why you believe in polygyny. Give your kids an understanding of why you chose to practice polygamy if it applies to your family. Explain how this lifestyle can be beneficial for everyone involved, from creating strong bonds between families to providing financial stability or the opportunity for emotional closeness with more than one partner.
- Explain that each family has its own unique circumstances and situation and that your reason might not necessarily be shared universally. Perhaps you personally find comfort in multiple wives or have a strong faith that guides your life decisions. You should also explain any cultural background related to choosing plural marriage. For instance, if it’s part of a religious practice like Islam or Mormonism.
- It is also important to explain the dynamics of the relationship between you and your wife, as well as how you see your relationship with potential sister wives. Make sure that children understand that polygyny does not mean "too many moms" or that their biological mother is somehow being replaced or made less by the addition of a second wife, but rather that she is adding more love and support in their lives.
- Explain how each person in the family will still have individual responsibilities and relationships within it. Reassure your kids that nothing will change between you and them and that they are just gaining an additional adult figure who cares for them deeply. Once this has been established, talk through any concerns they may have.
- Acknowledge their feelings. Your children likely have mixed emotions towards the idea, from confusion or skepticism to curiosity or even excitement. Let them know it is normal to have questions and mixed feelings, and that you are there to provide a safe space for them to express their thoughts on plural marriage.
- Encourage questions and make sure they feel comfortable bringing up issues like jealousy or different expectations of how plural families should look. Be sure to listen and respond with patience, understanding, and kindness. It is also important to involve your children in making decisions about the acceptance or integration of any new family members. This can help give them a sense of ownership over the process and will aid in their understanding of it as well.
- Finally, emphasize that you both love each family equally and that polygamy does not have to be a source of stress or conflict but instead can be a source of strength for all involved.
By following these steps, you can ensure your conversations on polygamy are productive and successful. With thoughtful preparation and open dialogue with your children, you can effectively explain what it means for your family while allowing them the chance to ask questions and understand the situation. In doing so, your family can build stronger relationships and grow closer together.
Be sure to answer their questions candidly. As parents, it's important not to downplay any of the complexities that come with polygamous relationships. Be open to discussing any potential negative aspects of polygamy and address them with honesty. Reassure your kids that although there may be more people in a plural marriage, they will still get the same amount of attention, love, and support from everyone involved.
By creating an honest and open space for conversations about polygamy, you can ensure that your family is well-equipped to handle whatever changes come their way. It’s also important to make sure that all parties involved feel respected, loved, and valued within the family structure. With these tips in place, you can create a strong foundation for talking to your kids about polygamy so you can foster understanding and secure a loving environment for all members of your family.
A successful dialogue about polygamy requires patience and understanding, but it is possible. By addressing any questions or concerns and emphasizing the importance of mutual respect, you can ensure that your children are comfortable with the idea of polygamy and help foster a strong family unit. With meaningful conversations, your family can learn to embrace all aspects of plural marriage while continuing to grow closer together.
For more information about polygyny and plural marriage, read our polygamy blog.