Marriage and monogamy certainly aren’t perfect, but are the alternatives any better?
- Sunset-clause marriage (by de Botton’s definition, a situation where the marriage is renegotiated every ten years)
- Marriage with secret affairs
- Serial monogamy
- Communal living
With his trademark wit, de Botton outlines the perks and problems associated with each alternate arrangement. With polyamory, for instance, you get constant sexual possibilities but you’ll also very likely deal with jealousy.
In the end, the writer suggests that it’s not the framework of our relationships that needs improving, it’s our emotional intelligence within relationships that we need to work on.
“The solution to the dilemmas of relationships should be to increase our understanding of how to love, rather than merely making it easier to find and fire new lovers,” he says.