So what's the cutting edge feminist thought at this popular, influential site? One of the most recent articles was about getting your mother to accept that you are in a polygamous relationship. A woman wrote in seeking advice for this problem:
I'm currently in a relationship with a man I love dearly, and I have been for nearly 3 years. It's going well, he's marvelous, we get on great. There's just one thing - this is a polyamorous relationship. He also has another girlfriend, who he's been with for a long time. That in itself isn't a problem. I knew about her before I entered into the relationship and I've never had a problem with polyamory, it suits me fine ... The problem is in explaining this to my parents ... I want to convey that this relationship is every bit as committed as a monogamous one and just as loving. How do you go about explaining this kind of thing with no knowledge of the response you'll get? What if the response is negative? Please help.
The advice from feministing:
Answer their questions with patience. I also caution that words like polyamory may not work for the first conversation. Keep it simple. "Mom, I know you keep asking me about the woman who says she is in a relationship with Jack. They are in a relationship. I've always known about it ..."
If she denigrates the relationship, I would point out ways that he has been great in the past. When he has been at family functions, when he has helped your family, how happy you are together.
And then, and this may be the most difficult part, let it go. It will take time for your mother to understand and accept this (just ask the majority of queer folks who eventually have accepting parents). Keep answering their questions, but also set boundaries. If either of them are rude to your boyfriend or questions his love for you, you can call a stop to that. Your relationship and partner deserves respect.
This is the last and most important part - prove them wrong by actions. Show them that for all of their preconceived notions of what a "real" relationship is, you and your man are happy and love each other. It takes time, but this will be the greatest convincer of all.
Granted, this is not exactly polygamy as there is no formalised marriage and it's a little more open-ended than traditional polygamy. But it's still an effort to normalise a man living together with two or more women. It clearly opens the door for an acceptance of polygamy as found in non-Western cultures.
This illustrates a point that conservatives have made for some time. If you believe that a family is any group of people who love each other and live together, then logically you are committed to accepting polygamy. The modern view of family is therefore likely to lead in the long run to the acceptance of polygamy as a social norm.
It also hints at the real preferences of the more serious feminists. The sexuality of men and women operates at different levels. At one level, male sexuality is naturally promiscuous and female sexuality is hypergamous (meaning that women have an instinct to be with the most dominant male). If human nature only operated at this level then monogamy would be exceptionally rare.
But there are other drives and impulses within human nature. We do experience a higher form of love in which we seek our "complement" in a close, faithful relationship with someone of the opposite sex. It is this which leads on to the traditional Western form of marriage and family life.
I wonder if there are serious feminists who have rejected the traditional family as patriarchal (or as an impediment to female autonomy) and who therefore seek to "liberate" female sexuality - which really means liberating the female instinct to hypergamy.
The family form which corresponds best to hypergamy is, of course, polygamy - as this gives the most women access to the small number of socially dominant men.
So will more feminists come out in support of polygamy? We'll have to see - but I'm guessing the answer will be yes.