Chris's article

Divorced Meri And Kody Brown Celebrate ‘Anniversary’!


Despite a long-troubled relationship, 'Sister Wives' stars cozies up in Chicago. 


Meri and Kody Brown celebrated their “anniversary” despite the fact that the Sister Wives patriarch divorced her legally to marry Robyn, another spouse.


This weekend, Kody’s first wife, Meri, posted a photo of Kody and herself on Instagram. They were smiling at the camera together on a city street.


She captioned the post: “Kody flew out to Chicago on my last day of #LuLaRoe leadership so we could spend our anniversary together yesterday. How sweet was that?! ♡♡♡ 28 years and still here!


#LivingMyWhy #28Years #Anniversary #Chicago #Happiness.”


PHOTOS: Guns, Whiskey & Whips! ‘Sister Wives’ Son Gets Wild


Meri, who was referring to the LuLaRoe clothing line she’s been plugging, appeared to be thrilled that her multi-married husband showed up to honor their big day.


However, the situation is puzzling as Kody and Meri were divorced a few years ago so that Robyn could be Kody’s legal wife. Even though Kody considers Robyn to be his “4th” wife, he has never legally married Christine and Janelle, his other so-called spouses.


Also, Meri later got catfished, falling for someone on the internet who she believed to be a man — only to discover it was a woman named Jackie Overton, who had lied to her in a six-month relationship.


PHOTOS: ‘Decriminalize’ Polygamy! Kody Brown is Fighting For Plural Marriages


Kody admitted that he does not want to be intimate with Meri on a recent Sister Wives episode.


Meri’s feelings were hurt and she had a meltdown during the finale of the Sister Wives Tell All special.


Meri cried while the other wives discussed how she and Kody were under strain.


“We dug this hole for 25 years. It’s not something we’re going to fix with a weekend getaway,” Kody told the TV cameras about his “marriage” to Meri.








Published By: Sister Wives 

Matchmakers Inc: Sisterwives.com


Do the intense feelings in polyamory ever end?


I’m writing to you because I’ve come to what feels like a breaking point in one of my polyamorous relationships. I’m relatively new to non-monogamy — I began seeing another person for the first time in September 2017. So since then I have been with both my partner with whom I live, and this new person — neither of them are seeing anyone else, but they would if they wanted to. I don’t know how to explain how I feel in a short email, but in a few words: I feel torn in two., I feel like my heart can’t handle how much I feel for both these people, and that I almost feel too much. I want to give everything to both of them and still have some part of me to give all the other people in my life.
I am writing this after a horrendous night where they were both present at the same evening, andwhere I ended up getting really drunk and bawling my eyes out. I felt like I had to choose between them, and couldn’t. This morning I think I have made the decision to end my new relationship because it is too difficult. I wanted to ask you: how do you manage these intense feelings without feeling like you’re relegating people to small boxed off spaces?
Does it have to do with my own mental health at all? Is it that I just simply am not a strong enough and whole enough person to be able to do this? (this is how it feels).
Sorry for the intense email, but if you do have any thoughts on my situation, I’d be glad to hear them.

You can’t really change your feelings but this isn’t necessarily a problem with your feelings, it’s a problem with your expectations and thought processes which is allowing certain feelings to crop up.

The way you manage that is through two things I’ll talk about here:

  • Changing your expectations
  • Reframing your perspective
Changing your expectations

Within your letter, you don’t really explain what you mean by wanting to give “everything” to them. What does that mean? Do you mean all of your time? All of your emotional energy? The first thing I think you need to do is challenge the assumption that loving someone means giving them every aspect of your emotional energy and time, or rather that in order to love someone, you have to give them your emotional energy and time.

Because that’s an idea which monogamy encourages and especially reinforces of the cases of people who are feminine, read as women or raised as women. Specifically, it encourages these people to see their value as a person as what they have to offer others in the form of beauty, emotional labour, and pretty much anything else. I feel like there might be a lot more going on here with you expecting that you need to give “everything” to all of these people — and that you need to give things to people at all.

A relationship is an exchange and a compromise, but that goes both ways and has to go both ways. But it’s not all about you giving something to someone else. And believing a relationship involves you giving ‘everything’ to one person, I think, is one of the harmful things which monogamous-centric culture teaches you which is harmful to anyone in any type of relationship. It sounds romantic and sweet, but this is the kind of outlook which abusive people use to entrap people, so I would encourage you to rethink this and reframe your perspective on this.

To recap, the first problem that I think you’re having is your expectation of yourself and what is involved in a relationship. I think you need to look at realistically what you want in a relationship. Think about it in terms of tangibles. What time are you spending where? And what are your needs rather than your assumptions on what you’re supposed to give to whom? And what do you expect from the people you’re in relationships with? What is the lifestyle you want to have with your partner(s)? When you begin with the tangible stuff and you start from the standpoint of what you need rather than what you’re giving, it’s a lot easier to manage.

Reframing your perspective

The second thing I think you need to do is reframe your perspective and also accept your own boundaries. It worries me a bit that you assume that having these feelings means you are not “strong enough”. This is another really destructive idea that our society encourages, the idea that having or expressing emotions makes you weak or not strong. You can’t control the feelings you have. You can only control how you choose to respond to them and the framing your mind has that encourages different types of feelings.

In changing your expectations, you definitely may reframe your mind but I think you also need to furthermore reframe your feelings as fewer problems and more of signs that your body and your mind are trying to tell you something. Whenever we start a new relationship or whenever things are seemingly unstable, our feelings are going to run on high alert. You might be fighting a lot of internal conditioning of how ‘wrong’ it is for you to have more than one partner. There might be other things your brain is telling you that is keeping your emotions running on high, but the easiest way to cope with your emotions is to begin by not blaming yourself for having them. It’s a lot easier for you to cope with something if you’re not beginning the coping already injured from beating yourself up.

Regardless of what you choose in terms of your relationship style, you will not be able to avoid uncertainty and instability. For as much as we would like to be able to control all aspects of our life, we don’t. Life is ultimately outside of our control and the only thing constant is change. So you will have to be able to deal with a lot of different types of instability and change in your life. The way to deal with that is to have boundaries in place. What you want are things that ground you — but don’t restrain you or prevent you from moving where you need to move.

It might be that you just don’t like the emotions that being with both of your partners on the same evening in the same place brings. And that’s okay. One of the things I don’t like about many polyamory communities and especially the word ‘compersion’ is it puts forth this idea that the ideal for any polyamorous person is feeling no jealousy and only happiness when you see your partners with other people — but that’s sometimes not the reality for a lot of us and that’s okay. It doesn’t make us less ‘strong’ than people who do no more than anything else does. I know personally, I would rarely enjoy being with two of my partners in the same evening and in the same place — just because I’d feel nervous about my own feelings and that anxiety would defeat the entire purpose.

Does that mean I’m weak? Well, maybe some people might think so, but that doesn’t really matter. I’m not doing my relationship style as some sort of gladiator decathlon tryout. When I die, it’s not like I get a gold encrusted plaque on my burial mound that says “World’s Most Emotionally Hardcore Badass”. My loved ones won’t get some type of monetary prize if I prove my strength in some type of emotional arena. Ask yourself what you’re trying to prove? And to whom? And for what? You don’t have to be someone who is fine with them both being present at the same evening.

Listen to yourself and your feelings and instead of trying to fight an emotional battle in your own head of your own creation that has absolutely no prize for winning, give yourself permission to be yourself. And set up boundaries around that which make it easier. Hopefully, none of your partners are forcing you to do any of this, but you’re allowed to say that it just makes you feel uncomfortable. That’s okay. It doesn’t make you weak and it doesn’t make you un-whole. You are as much “whole” as any other human being who is in any other type of relationship.

Reframe your perspective and allow yourself the freedom to feel. Allow yourself permission to have feelings without assuming that is a failure. It might be a lot easier to manage your intense emotions if you’re not beating yourself up for having them or trying to suppress them. And this isn’t necessarily about mental health. People with mental health challenges can sometimes find it hard to cope with new things or changes, but it’s not impossible. I would suggest getting a polyamory friendly therapist who can help you work through your feelings, but definitely, don’t suppress them.

In summation

Allow yourself to feel your feelings and set up boundaries. Just keep in mind that when you set up boundaries, you’re doing so in order to manage feelings, not prevent them. The problem people have with boundaries and rules is that they so often create rules that are designed to prevent emotions when rules will not do that. Setting up these boundaries will not change your emotions, but in trying out polyamory, you’re in a way learning how you do these relationships. And just like you did when you were probably trying out monogamy, you had to learn over time how it worked and what you wanted out of them.

In trying something new, you’re inevitably going to feel anxious, nervous and you’re going to make mistakes. Rather than expecting ‘perfection’ from yourself, which really does not exist here, give yourself a bit of permission to learn something new. Challenge your assumptions and expectations and reframe your perspective and you might find this a lot easier in the future.

I hope this helps and good luck!

Sorry to Spread around this bit of Fake News from in Touch Weekly. From our Research here at Sister Wives Dating, TLC did not Cancel Sister Wives the TV Show


The Primer for Sister Wives the TV Show will be Jan 20th 2019 and for Seeking Sister Wife it will be Jan 14th 2019!

We here at Sister Wives Dating are all Very Very Excited to seen them Both!

Congrats to TLC for making these amazing TV Shows!












Published By: Christopher Alesich

Matchmakers, Inc - Sisterwives.com



‘Sister Wives’ family makes home in inclusive Arizona city


By Brady McCombs and Felicia Fonseca | AP August 25


FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — The patriarch of the polygamous family from TV’s “Sister Wives” drove around his new hometown in northern Arizona, admiring the mountain views but still thinking about the heap of boxes that needed sorting at the homes he rented for his four wives and 18 children.


“We moved to heaven, but we’re in living hell right now,” Kody Brown said, laughing, during a recent phone interview with The Associated Press.


Packing up four moving trucks in Las Vegas during triple-digit July heat and taking his family to Flagstaff, a liberal college city in largely conservative Arizona, was no easy task.


But the Browns said they needed a new place to call home — and film their TLC reality show — after realizing they didn’t want to grow old in Las Vegas. They said they lived there in “exile” after fleeing Utah in 2011 under the threat of prosecution following the premiere of their groundbreaking show.


Flagstaff residents have a “live and let live” attitude, and the City Council has passed resolutions promoting diversity and inclusion. The city has snowy winter seasons and is a popular destination for desert dwellers to cool off.


That open-mindedness and beauty attracted the Browns after they ruled out returning to Utah, where they feel discrimination persists against plural families.


“Let’s just say there’s a lot of hippies in Flagstaff, and they’re awesome,” Brown said.


Being married to more than one person, or bigamy, is illegal across the United States. The law in Mormon-heavy Utah is considered stricter because of a unique provision that bars married people from living with a second “spiritual spouse.”


The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints abandoned polygamy in 1890 and strictly prohibits it today. The Browns consider themselves fundamentalist Mormons.


In a memo addressing legal questions about the family, Flagstaff police said Brown could not be charged with bigamy because he is legally married to one woman, Robyn Brown. The patriarch says he’s “spiritually married” to the other three women.


The Browns bought four lots totaling almost 15 acres a few miles from downtown Flagstaff for $820,000 in June, according to property records. They said they eventually plan to build a home or homes but are now living in four rentals scattered throughout the community.


Producers told city officials the TV show will do most of the filming at the homes and in a commercial building space the Browns rented. Season eight of “Sister Wives” is set to debut on TLC in January 2019.


Flagstaff has been abuzz about the move, with residents sharing sightings of the family on social media.


Pete Page lives across the street from the Browns in a quiet neighborhood where homes are spread out amid a meadow and surrounded by ponderosa pine trees. 


He doesn’t object to the family’s lifestyle but doesn’t want to see environmental damage, streets blocked off for filming, more traffic and noise, or fans driving around trying to get a glimpse.


“Everyone has the same concern: ‘Is this going to turn into a circus?’” fellow neighbor Michael Reidy said. “Most of us don’t think it will, but that will be the fear.”


Jessie Luckey, who lives in east Flagstaff with her husband and two children, said she enjoyed watching “Sister Wives” and would be courteous to the family, but views their lifestyle as patriarchal and sexist.


“This is not a culture I want here,” she said, “normalizing a behavior that I don’t think should be normalized.”


The Browns initially imagined returning to Utah despite suing over its unique cohabitation law, alleging it violated their religious freedom. They scored an early legal victory, but an appeals court ruled they couldn’t sue because they had not been charged under the law.


“Utah is hostile toward polygamists,” Kody Brown said. “There is a very natural and subtle discrimination from the public because of those anti-polygamy laws.”


The family doesn’t regret its time in Nevada, where the kids blossomed because they could be normal and not singled out as polygamous kids like in Utah, the wives said. They now range in age from 2 to 24.


Three of the Browns’ children are married, and two others are in serious relationships — including one daughter who is a lesbian. None plans to practice polygamy.


“I am very comfortable with their choices regardless of what they are,” Brown said.

___

McCombs reported from Salt Lake City.



A 60-year-old pastor has married his pregnant teenage girlfriend - with the blessing of his first wife.


Thom Miller met his first wife, 44-year-old Belinda, who had seven children from a previous marriage, eight years ago.


But having discussed polygamy after Mrs Miller suggested finding another woman to be part of the family, the pair from Mansfield, Ohio, decided to welcome 19-year-old Reba Kerfootruba into their relationship.


Speaking to Barcroft TV, Mr Miller said he was a friend of Ms Kerfootruba's family and knew her when she was younger.
He said the couple bumped into her while volunteering at the church and she moved into their home shortly after.


Mr Miller said: “I’ve known Reba for a long time, then she moved away and I hadn’t seen her for years. 
"When she hugged me, it wasn’t a normal hug and I wanted to keep hugging her and I realised, wow, I’m really appreciating this woman.”


Belinda said: "I wanted to have more of a family, I wanted to be complete, and having another lady in the house not only makes our family as a whole, but individually it's a beautiful thing because it's like having a sister around."


The pair married at the his church - exactly seven years after Thom married Belinda,



Mr Miller is now fighting to have his marriage recognised by the state, pointing to the fact that gay marriage is now legal there.

"I have no problem with homosexuals but I think it's wrong that their marriage is now recognised by the state but my second marriage is not," he said.

“This is America and my wives and I have the right to live anyway we please- providing we’re not hurting anybody.

”The trio believe the Bible supports polygamy, although Reba's family were initially against the relationship.

“At first, my family thought that what we were doing was not right because of him being married," she said.




“But they started to come around as they realised I’m happy.


The new family plan to raise the baby together as a whole family.


“The baby will have two moms which I’m ok with”, Reba said.


They explained Mr Miller only shares his bedroom with one wife at a time, with the pair taking turns.


Belinda said: "Thom is the love of my life and Reba is the blessing of my life so it all works."


A former mafia enforcer, Mr Miller said he turned his life around after reading the Bible in prison, where he was serving a seven-year sentence for stabbing a man in a bar fight.


Source: Independent

'No one who comes to us has the right to put their cultural roots, or their religious beliefs, above our laws,' says justice minister


Germany is to end its unofficial tolerance of polygamy - including marriages involving minors, the country's justice minister has vowed.


Heiko Maas said the move was designed to prevent people in Germany committing to more than one marriage.


“No one who comes to us has the right to put their cultural roots, or their religious beliefs, above our laws,” Mr Maas told Bild newspaper.

“For that reason multiple marriages cannot be recognised in Germany.”

Polygamy is a criminal offence in Germany, but Bild alleged German authorities “often look the other way” if a migrant brings several wives to the country.


Mr Maas said arranged marriages also needed to be addressed, especially in cases where underage girls were involved.


“We cannot tolerate forced marriages,” he said.


According to Unicef, there are 39,000 child marriages every day in the world.


Authorities are unable to register more than one wife to the same man, which has proved difficult and causes other problems such as listing other wives as single mothers and the distribution of inheritance.


In 2013, Germany’s president Joachim Gauck became an honorary godfather to a baby of a couple where the man had more than one wife. Under the law, parents can apply for the status if they have seven children as part of the president’s duties to support families with multiple children.


A Christian Democratic Union MP called for the president to renounce the title on the grounds of polygamy being illegal.


Polygamy, where a man has multiple wives, is legal in much of the Muslim world including the Middle East, Indonesia, and almost all of Africa.


In 2015, India’s Supreme Court ruled out polygamy for Muslims, stating it was not a fundamental right for followers of the religion. Having more than one wife is illegal in US, but is still quite widely practiced in Utah, where there are said to be around 30,000 polygamists.

Society tells us being a heterosexual in a closed monogamous relationship with a legal contract to prove it is the ideal. With the divorce rate hovering around 45% one has to wonder how valuable this path is to follow. Funny enough, with marriage equality recently passing nationwide in the US, more people waiting for marriage later in life, and attitudes about alternative relationships shifting, the divorce rate is decreasing. This is because people today are not only waiting for marriage they are also open to more honest and possibly ‘open’ relationships of some form. Living a life with a partner/s that suits the true desires of all involved naturally leads to better life satisfaction and overall happiness 
 
So what are the options? What relationship could be right for you? Here are a few basic concepts to consider. 
 
Closed Monogamy: This will likely remain the top choice for decades to come because no amount of imagination will convince many people it isn’t the best option. People that can remain faithful and honest to their partner for life can find this is a very happy existence with many benefits. There will be less exposure to outside issues and a legal contract (Marriage) between the two will help with major life decisions if the other becomes incapable. The ‘good ole-fashioned’ married life can absolutely be wonderful for two people that are committed to the lifestyle and to each other. 
 
Open Relationship: In an open relationship a partner is free to have sexual relationships outside of their core relationship. This may or may not include ‘dating’ outside of the core relationship but sexual activity is acceptable and can either be something you tell each other or respect one and the others privacy. The benefit here is that maintaining sexual freedom gives an individual the feeling of self determination and two people that love each other and want a life together aren’t always ideal sexual partners. This is a great way to build a life with someone of differing sexual persuasions or for two people that are not interested in sexual fidelity to any individual. Being honest and straightforward about your shifting boundaries and willing to compromise when needed is vital to maintaining a healthy open relationship. 
 
Closed Polyamorous: A group of three or more people that choose to be together in a committed fashion can make for some exciting times, but keep in mind, it’s not all about sex. If a group has decided to be closed they can ‘date’ new people together, or not at all, depending on the desires of the collective. There are more feelings to work with because the more you add to the group the more possible feelings that could be hurt. Everyone involved has to be given a voice and full respect of their feelings. This style of relationship is becoming far more common in our day. People use the word ‘polygamy’ to describe many of these relationships, but polyandry can also apply, or no defining term at all is necessary. A relationship is what you make it. Legally a group of people cannot be bonded together in a marriage but two people within a group can marry if they wish. 
Many polyamorous people however do not care to concern themselves with legal contracts to define their relationships. 
 
Open Polyamorous: A person can feel close to many people sexually and emotionally but never develop a desire for full commitment to a person or group. They may have a few groups they date or even a core group that is still allowed to date others. They may have a core relationship with one person but are allowed to date others and have relationships without limitations with others while maintaining their core relationship. Open and polyamorous is wide open for each individual to define for themselves. This can be the toughest poly lifestyle to have or maintain but it can also be the most rewarding if handled well. It requires a great deal of honesty, understanding, respect, and forgiving. It is nearly guaranteed to bring situations where jealousy will creep in and you have to remember what you’re dealing with. 
 
Gay or bisexual situations can apply to any of these according to what suits the people involved. Judgment of anyone living honestly in whatever lifestyle they feel they belong is to be avoided, shunned, and/or ignored if it’s directed at you. Modern society has come a long way into accepting ‘alternative lifestyles’ and we are all better off for it. It’s important to make sure you never contribute to any regression by imposing your ill will onto others with your words or behavior. Check out this previous article on dealing with bullies. 
 
The poly life is not for everyone. If feelings of jealousy are too overwhelming and the thought of multiple partners absolutely turns you off it is not recommended to try and involve yourself in an open lifestyle, plural relationship, or any poly situation. Dating a happy group or open person while being uncomfortable with the entire idea is not just some fun for you. It can hurt a lot of people that take their relationships seriously. On the other hand, if you think joining a group to date or starting one sounds exciting I recommend checking out ​Sister Wives online. It’s a dating site and online community of like-minded poly people. When you find the lifestyle that would make you happiest the possibilities to share that joy are endless. It is no longer necessary to subscribe to only doing as told. Explore your truth and enjoy life to its fullest!

Published By:
Christopher Alesich
Sisterwives.com

Written By: Mark Kennedy - for Sister Wives: Poly Dating Website

PHOENIX (AP) — A jury verdict against two polygamous towns in Arizona and Utah for discriminating against nonbelievers now puts the future of the communities in the hands of a judge who will have to remedy the sweeping civil rights violations.


Federal authorities haven't specified the changes they'll seek in Colorado City, Arizona, and Hildale, Utah, but the judge has several options, including disbanding the towns' shared police force, one of the targets in the Monday's verdict.


Former church member Richard Holm, who was arrested by local police for trespassing on a property to which he held the title, said the jury's decision would be hollow if the judge doesn't disband the Colorado City Marshal's Office and instead put county sheriffs in charge. "For there ever to be a decent community, there's gotta be new faces, new control," Holm said.


The jury concluded the towns violated the constitutional rights of nonbelievers by denying them basic services such as police protection, building permits and water hookups. U.S. District Judge H. Russel Holland is expected to order changes to the communities in the coming months.


The trial marks one of boldest efforts by the government to confront what critics have long said was a corrupt regime in the neighboring communities. It provided a rare glimpse into the communities that for years have been shrouded in secrecy and are distrustful of government and outsiders.


The jury awarded $2.2 million to Holm and five other residents for emotional distress as a result of housing discrimination, but the towns will have to pay only $1.6 million because of a settlement in that part of the case that was reached while the jury was deliberating.


Other possible remedies that Holland could order include barring town officials from discriminating, requiring fair-housing training for town employees and having a court-appointed official monitor whether the town is complying with court's orders.


The possibility of disbanding the marshal's office was raised earlier by the state of Arizona in a separate housing discrimination case against Colorado City, though that case's judge kept the police force intact.


Town leaders will abide by whatever changes are ordered by the judge, Colorado City attorney Jeff Matura said, but the government's actions won't change people's religious beliefs.


"There is nothing that the government can do or really should be able to do to change someone's faith," Matura said.


The towns were accused of doing the bidding of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, a radical offshoot of mainstream Mormonism, which disavowed polygamy more than 100 years ago. The trial came as the federal government waged fights on multiple fronts to rein in church activities.


A grand jury in Utah has indicted several church leaders on charges of food stamp fraud.


The U.S. Labor Department has a separate action against a ranch with ties to the church over a pecan harvest in which prosecutors allege that children were forced to work long hours with few breaks.


During the civil rights case, the Justice Department said town employees assisted the group's leader when he was a fugitive and took orders from church leaders about whom to appoint to government jobs.


They say local police ignored the food stamp fraud scheme and marriages between men and underage brides.


Jurors concluded officers treated nonbelievers inequitably when providing police protection, arrested them without having probable cause and made unreasonable searches of their property.


One woman who was denied a water connection testified that she had to haul water to her home and take away sewage for six years. A former sect member said police ignored hundreds of complaints of vandalism on his horse property because he was no longer part of the church.


The towns deny the allegations and say the government is persecuting town officials because it disapproves of their religion.


"If this was any other community in America, this would not be happening at this level," Hildale attorney Blake Hamilton said after the verdict. "The scrutiny these communities have been under is just unprecedented."

A new study commissioned by the federal government recommends that Canada legalize polygamy and change legislation to help women and children living in plural relationships.


The paper by three law professors at Queen's University in Kingston argues that a Charter challenge to Section 293 of the Criminal Code banning polygamy might be successful, said Beverley Baines, one of the authors of the report.


"The polygamy prohibition might be held as unconstitutional," Ms. Baines said in an interview last night.


"The most likely Charter [of Rights and Freedoms] challenge would be brought by people claiming their freedom of their religion might be infringed. Those living in Bountiful would say polygamy is a religious tenet."


The possibility of a Charter challenge to polygamy laws has added significance since Paul Martin pledged this week that the first act of a new Liberal government would be to remove the federal government's ability to use the Constitution's notwithstanding clause to override Supreme Court decisions dealing with Charter rights.


Polygamy has been practised for more than 60 years in Bountiful, in southeastern B.C. Last year, the RCMP launched an investigation into allegations of child abuse and sexual exploitation within the fundamentalist Mormon community of 1,000 people. No charges have ever been laid.


The Martin government commissioned the $150,000 study into the legal and social ramifications of polygamy just weeks before it introduced divisive same-sex marriage legislation. Same-sex marriage was approved last June.


Critics said at the time that the study underscored a deep concern in the federal government that legalized homosexual marriage could lead to constitutional challenges from minority groups who claim polygamy as a religious right.


"In order to best prepare for possible debate surrounding Canada's polygamy policy, critical research is needed," a Status of Women Canada document said last year.


"It is vital that researchers explore the impacts of polygamy on women and children and gender equality, as well as the challenges that polygamy presents to society."


Sayd Mumtaz Ali, president of the Canadian Society of Muslims, said last year that he opposes same-sex marriage, but said if it is legalized in Canada, polygamists would be within their rights to challenge for their choice of family life to be legalized.


"This is a liberally minded country with regards to equal rights, and literally millions live common law," Mr. Ali said.


Multiple marriage is legal in most Muslim countries, he said. But Muslim men who take more than one wife must prove to local courts that they are capable of treating them all equally, Mr. Ali said.


Chief author of the report Martha Bailey told The Canadian Press that criminalizing polygamy serves no good purpose.


"Why criminalize the behaviour?" she said. "We don't criminalize adultery.


"In light of the fact that we have a fairly permissive society, why are we singling out that particular form of behaviour for criminalization?, Ms. Bailey told The Canadian Press.


Ms. Baines said polygamy is rarely prosecuted. "No one is actually being prosecuted but the provision is still being used in the context of immigration and refugee stuff. People are not being admitted to the country."


She said removing it from the Criminal Code will not force marriage laws to recognize it, but would only remove criminal sanctions.


The report -- commissioned by the Justice Department and Status of Women Canada and written by Ms. Baines, Bita Amani and Ms. Bailey -- also says the criminalization of polygamy does not address the harms that women in polygamous relationships face and suggests Canadian laws be changed to better serve women by providing them spousal support and inheritance rights.


"They are denied access to our divorce law.... You have a great deal of difficulty claiming your rights with access to children, custody of children and financial support for the children," she said. "We are starting to make accommodations for some small things in some of the provinces [such as] extending support law to women and children in any kind of marriage.


"Polygamous marriages are legal in some countries. They come to Canada, the vast majority of them will not know the law and they have no legal protection. They could be prosecuted. Suddenly, they're living in fear."


Polygamy, outlawed in Canada but accepted in many countries, typically means a man having several wives at the same time.


 


Source: Legalize Polygamy

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