Sunday, July 16, 2017


A bit of a meditation on MAN SHARING.

Back in high school, young women were so determined to declared themselves one man women, and young men were so determined to have a "girlfriend," that having a ring on your finger from him was not only important, it was fairly easy to get.  All he needed was a generous allowance or a job at the Drive Through Burger Stand. Then off to the jewelry store in the mall he went.
These rings were called "going steady" rings or even "pre-engagement" rings, and people took the status they inferred fairly seriously.  These rings, by my way of thinking, were also, "We're having sex but we're serious" rings.  Without one, you might just be sleeping around.  It just wasn't in our experience or our surroundings, with everyone's parents married, to think past the "good girl / bad girl" dichotomy, which was very much in place as if it were - the 1950's - even if that was long ago.  Nobody wanted to be thought of as a bad girl.  Good girls had rings.
Yet, it seemed to me that, just as seriously, certain girls - OK - CHEERLEADERS - did a lot of "giving back" of rings to declare themselves free and ready for - another young man - another ring!
So, just about graduation and prom time, there was a young man from another school who asked me to the prom and I said no.  I had spent some time with him hanging out at his house playing Scrabble and at my house watching TV - with our parents in the next room - and yet he had started rumors about me, claiming we'd had sex.  What a jerk! 
So I said no to the prom and he then went and asked another young woman from my school.  She was acting a bit haughty about it but I didn't care.
Proms seemed to me to be from out of the past.  I just wanted to graduate and never turn back.
But, to go ahead with my story here, off to the prom she went, and from what I heard he wasn't a perfect gentleman and she regretted it.  And soon it emerged that this young man had not only gone to our prom, but the prom as his school, and the prom at yet a third school!  With three different dates. How he ever met three young women to even ask or how he ever even afforded to go, who knows. 
All three young women, sans rings, were upset and angry. They had some romantic notion of what a prom date meant. And they had unintentionally shared a man, if only for a short time.

A few years ago a woman who had been a hippie, which I was never, told me about her man sharing experience in the 1960's while she was in college.  She, and two other women found out they were all having sex with the same man, who was playing them all as if they were the Only One.  This was pre legal abortion, they all had contraception, but he did not and it could have gone wrong for any or all of them.  So they decided they would play him.

One by one they called him and told him they need to Talk.  Then each woman told the man that, shockingly, she was pregnant and that she had not been with anyone else.  It was mean but they thought it was hilarious when he quit college and joined the army.  One can imagine what one unintended pregnancy might mean to a college student - but three?This woman was laughing about it years later. Now since they were all hippies I imagined they would be into the "Free Love" of man sharing, but they were not.

So now it's 2017 and there are women who knowingly and willingly man share.  Some of these women move in and have a Triad, others are Secret Mistresses, some are Ex Wives who don't want to live with their ex husbands any more but still, sometimes they feel as close as they once always were and still have sex even though they know he has Other Women. There are just endless varieties of reasons why but women do man share -  including the real or perceived lack of men in the vicinity though it seems to me that on-line dating may have helped - and it's not always out of desperation. 

There's so much talk about man sharing.  I hear senior citizen women do it a lot.  They all do lunch with a certain man.  No one involved is trying to be Exclusive. 
Is Exclusive only for people who want to be Traditional and Get Married and Have Children?

I thought of all of this as I thought about Ray Charles and his women.

You have to DECIDE.  Is it what you want to do with your life for now, for always?

"I decide.  If I man share knowingly that is my decision."

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