Should the Black Community Consider Open Marriage?

December 1, 2011  |  

Kenya Stevens, co-founder of Jujumama, a love-coaching company, is like me, outraged at the abysmal divorce and out-of-wedlock  rates in the black community. We both agree there’s a problem, but our solutions on how to solve it are as different as Mac and PC, Hemingway and McMillan, apples and oranges.

She and her husband Carl boldly put forth open marriage and sexual sharing as a viable option for both men and women and on its face, give some convincing arguments for why some should consider it. The couple has recently gained traction in popularity–they’ve been featured in Essence magazine, the Michael Baisden Show,” and “The Mo’Nique Show” on BET. (Mo’Nique has also stated she and her husband are in an open marriage.)

Stevens essentially says that people have been brainwashed into thinking human beings were meant to be monogamous and that only four percent of mammals in all creation are monogamous, which gives more credence to the human polyamorist ideal. She argues that Christianity and Islam are instrumental in shackling people into these rules. “That’s just a bunch of malarky to keep the peons in check. We’re not peons.” Lastly, it’s “the government” that doesn’t want couples to share resources because it doesn’t present a cost-benefit.

Stevens freely admits that she and her husband are in an open, sexual marriage. “Not only do we tell the truth about who we are and what we feel and what we desire, we can act upon those things,” Stevens said. And in fairness, she also states that some people have non-sexual open marriages in which they tell the truth about what they desire, but don’t act upon them. “The can have emotional love relationships with others, but they just don’t get out of monogamy.”

The goal, she says, it not to pursue sexual relationships out of “lust,” but out of “love.”  Stevens said her husband has “lots of women,” and she has “lots of men,” but they have love relationships with them–it’s not just lustful sex. “We want to have an authentic love relationship with our partners. We’re not looking to have short-term one night stands, swinging, sort of, dangerous affairs. We want to add individuals to our community. I know my husband’s love partners, he knows my love partners.”

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