The advance of the "throuple"

Carolyn Moynihan
9 March 2015
Reproduced with Permission

Three Thai men have advertised their "marriage" on the internet and appeared in Thai media, claiming the distinction of being, possibly, the first gay men to have a three-way wedding. Joke, 29, Bell, 21, and Art, 26, had their ceremony on Valentine's Day in Uthai Thani Province. At Breitbart , Thomas D. Williams notes:

The threesome did not undergo a state ceremony, since Thai law does not recognize same-sex marriages or polygamy, but the trio claims that their union is sanctioned by Buddhist law. Buddhism is notoriously short on rules and does not forbid polygamy , though Buddhists are counseled to limit themselves to one wife. Buddhism has no official teaching regarding homosexual practice, other than prohibiting it for celibate monks.

Art and Joke formed a couple, and later were joined by Bell, reports the New York Post .

"I think we are first three-way same-sex males to have a wedding - possibly in the world," said Bell. "Some people may not agree and are probably amazed by our decision, but we believe many people do understand and accept our choice. Love is love, after all."

But for how long? The story has all the gravity of a Hollywood celebrity wedding, and what will be really amazing is to find that these three men are still "married" in a couple of years' time, even according to their own criteria. Or if they are, whether the criteria exclude other relationships. Throuple weddings look like advance publicity for knocking down the next marriage hurdle, monogamy, as many have predicted.

Marriage itself has never been the ultimate goal for some sexual libertarians, as the 2006 Beyond Marriage manifesto, signed by over 300 scholars, writers and assorted activists, showed. "Marriage is not the only worthy form of family or relationship, and it should not be legally and economically privileged above all others."

Creating parodies of marriage is one way to diminish its worth.

Last April three Massachusetts lesbians who claim to be married announced they were expecting "their" first child. Doll, Kitten and Brynn Young exchanged vows in a commitment ceremony eight months earlier. However, the trio seem to have retired from public life as there is nothing on the internet about them -- at a glance, anyway - since the pregnancy news.

Massachusetts was the first US state to legalise same-sex marriage but it does not (yet) allow formal polygamy, and nor does any other state in the US. Brynn and Kitten (34 and 27 a year ago) were married in November 2011 under Massachusetts law, and later Doll, married twice before to other women, joined them.

Kitten, the youngest, became pregnant with the sperm of an unknown donor.

When approached by the New York Post, a representative for the state's attorney general declined to comment on the three-way union.

Massachusetts law-enforcement sources said they wouldn't go after any of the lovebirds unless the third "wife" sought some kind of recognized marital benefit, such as filing joint tax returns.

According to an account of the ceremony by the women themselves, two of them were not keen on the marriage angle anyway, but Kitten was:

Our biggest challenge: We come from very mixed backgrounds. Kitten was raised Christian but is now Pagan. Doll is also a Pagan, and Brynn is Agnostic. One huge challenge was creating a ceremony that included all the beliefs of each bride. Kitten is very traditional because of how she was raised. She wanted her father there and a white wedding dress. Doll, not a huge believer in legal marriages, leaned more towards handfasting and bonding. Brynn, married before, had little interest in weddings at all. All these things combined lead to the decisions of a Pagan priest with a one-day justice of the peace license.

We also had to work with in the legalities of the state. As being married to more than one person is not yet legal, we had to combine handfasting, legally binding documents, and legal marriage to come to a configuration we all felt equal in.

Note, not "yet" legal. Even if it were, it seems that marriage by itself won't ensure the stability of a lesbian relationship. And the marital history of the partners in this ménage-a-trois raises questions about its durability, especially once a child arrived. Jennifer Roback Morse predicted that it would soon end:

Focusing on the Massachusetts trio with the impending birth of a child, Dr. Morse told LifeSiteNews, "I predict that within five years of the birth of the baby this relationship will be in complete shambles. Every adult knows that when you place a baby into a mother's arms that many things change in ways that she could not predict."

"I have read many lesbian custody cases," she said. "Reading between the lines, what I see is that the mother cannot quite accept the idea that her child will call somebody else mommy. The mother thinks she is the one and only mother. She has more trouble than she expected sharing the care of her child with another woman."

Perhaps that is why the Young household has sunk from public view.