Platonic marriage is a term that describes a legal union between two people who do not have a sexual or romantic relationship with each other. They may be friends who share a close bond, trust, and loyalty, or they may have other reasons to marry platonically, such as raising children together, taking care of each other, or splitting expenses. Platonic marriages can be between same-sex or opposite-sex couples, and they are completely legal .
But why would someone choose to have a platonic marriage? What are the benefits and challenges of this unconventional arrangement? And how can you make it work if you decide to go for it? In this blog post, we will explore these questions and more, and provide some examples of platonic marriages in real life and fiction.
Why Platonic Marriage?
There are many possible reasons why someone may opt for a platonic marriage. Some of the most common ones are:
- Friendship: Some people may have a very strong friendship with someone of the same or opposite sex, and want to formalize their relationship and commitment. They may value their friendship more than any romantic or sexual attraction, and feel that they can provide each other with emotional support, companionship, and happiness.
- Family: Some people may want to have a family with someone they trust and respect, but not necessarily love romantically or sexually. They may have a shared desire to raise children together, or to take care of their aging parents or relatives. They may also want to avoid the complications of divorce or custody battles in case their romantic relationship ends.
- Finance: Some people may benefit from the financial advantages of being married, such as tax breaks, inheritance rights, health insurance, social security, etc. They may also want to share the costs of living, such as rent, mortgage, bills, groceries, etc. They may find that marrying platonically is a practical and convenient solution to their economic situation.
- Faith: Some people may have religious or cultural beliefs that prohibit them from having sex or romance outside of marriage. They may also face social pressure or stigma from their family or community if they remain single or cohabit with someone without being married. They may choose to marry platonically to respect their faith and values, and to avoid any potential conflict or judgment.
- Freedom: Some people may value their independence and autonomy more than anything else. They may not want to compromise their lifestyle, hobbies, career, or personal goals for the sake of a romantic or sexual partner. They may also enjoy having multiple casual relationships without any commitment or exclusivity. They may marry platonically to have a stable and reliable partner who respects their freedom and individuality.
Benefits and Challenges of Platonic Marriage
Platonic marriage can have many benefits for the partners involved, such as:
- Stability: Platonic marriage can provide a sense of security and stability for both partners. They can rely on each other for emotional support, companionship, and assistance in times of need. They can also enjoy the legal and financial benefits of being married.
- Compatibility: Platonic marriage can reduce the risk of conflict and disappointment that often arise from mismatched expectations, needs, or preferences in romantic or sexual relationships. The partners can focus on their friendship and mutual respect, rather than on their physical attraction or chemistry.
- Flexibility: Platonic marriage can allow both partners to have more freedom and flexibility in their personal lives. They can pursue their own interests, hobbies, career, or education without feeling guilty or restricted by their partner’s demands or wishes. They can also have other romantic or sexual relationships outside of their marriage, as long as they are honest and respectful with each other.
However, platonic marriage can also have some challenges that need to be addressed and overcome by the partners involved, such as:
- Communication: Platonic marriage requires clear and constant communication between the partners. They need to discuss their expectations, boundaries, rules, and goals before entering into the marriage, and keep updating them as their situation changes. They also need to communicate their feelings, needs, concerns, and problems with each other regularly.
- Commitment: Platonic marriage requires strong commitment from both partners. They need to honor their vows and promises to each other, and support each other through thick and thin. They also need to respect each other’s choices and preferences, and not try to change or control each other.
- Loneliness: Platonic marriage can sometimes lead to feelings of loneliness or isolation for one or both partners. They may miss the intimacy, romance, or passion that they could have with a sexual or romantic partner. They may also feel left out or misunderstood by their family, friends, or society, who may not accept or understand their platonic marriage.
- Jealousy: Platonic marriage can also trigger jealousy or insecurity for one or both partners, especially if they have other relationships outside of their marriage. They may feel threatened or hurt by their partner’s involvement with someone else, or they may worry about losing their partner’s attention, affection, or loyalty. They may also face criticism or judgment from their other partners, who may not approve of their platonic marriage.
How to Make Platonic Marriage Work
Platonic marriage can be a rewarding and fulfilling option for some people, but it is not for everyone. It requires a lot of communication, commitment, respect, and trust from both partners. Here are some tips on how to make platonic marriage work:
- Be honest and transparent with your partner. Share your feelings, needs, expectations, and goals with your partner, and listen to theirs. Be clear about your boundaries, rules, and agreements regarding your marriage and your other relationships. Do not hide anything from your partner, or lie to them.
- Be supportive and understanding of your partner. Celebrate their achievements, comfort them in their struggles, and help them in their needs. Appreciate their friendship, loyalty, and companionship. Respect their decisions, opinions, and preferences. Do not judge them, criticize them, or pressure them.
- Be flexible and adaptable with your partner. Be open to change and compromise with your partner as your situation evolves. Be willing to adjust your plans, schedules, or routines to accommodate your partner’s needs or wishes. Do not be rigid, stubborn, or selfish.
- Be affectionate and attentive with your partner. Show your love and care for your partner in different ways, such as hugs, kisses, compliments, gifts, surprises, etc. Spend quality time with your partner regularly, and do things that you both enjoy. Do not neglect them, ignore them, or take them for granted.
Examples of Platonic Marriage
Platonic marriage is not a new phenomenon. It has existed for centuries in different cultures and contexts. Here are some examples of platonic marriages in real life and fiction:
- Queen Elizabeth I and Robert Dudley: Queen Elizabeth I of England was famously known as the “Virgin Queen”, who never married or had children. However, she had a close friendship and possible romance with Robert Dudley, the Earl of Leicester. They were childhood friends who shared a common bond of being imprisoned by Queen Mary I. They remained loyal and devoted to each other throughout their lives. However, they never married due to political reasons. Some historians believe that they had a secret platonic marriage, while others dispute this claim.
- Sherlock Holmes and John Watson: Sherlock Holmes and John Watson are the iconic characters created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. They are a detective duo who solve crimes together in Victorian London. They have a strong friendship and partnership that is based on mutual respect, admiration, and trust. They live together at 221B Baker Street, but they do not have any sexual or romantic relationship with each other. They are often portrayed as platonic spouses in various adaptations of the stories.
- Will Truman and Grace Adler: Will Truman and Grace Adler are the main characters of the sitcom “Will & Grace” . They are best friends who live together in New York City. Will is a gay lawyer who has various relationships with men, while Grace is a straight interior designer who has various relationships with men. They have a platonic marriage that is based on humor.
- Humor: Platonic marriage can also be a source of humor and fun for both partners. They can joke about their situation, tease each other, or prank each other. They can also enjoy watching movies, playing games, or going out together. They can make each other laugh and smile, and not take themselves too seriously.
Platonic marriage is not for everyone, but it can be a viable option for some people who value friendship, compatibility, and flexibility over romance, sex, and intimacy. Platonic marriage can offer many benefits, such as stability, support, and freedom, but it can also pose some challenges, such as communication, commitment, and jealousy. Platonic marriage can work if both partners are honest, respectful, and supportive of each other, and if they communicate their expectations, boundaries, and feelings clearly.
If you are interested in platonic marriage, or if you are already in one, you may want to check out some resources that can help you understand and navigate this unconventional relationship. Here are some examples:
- [Platonic Partners]: A website that connects people who are looking for platonic marriages or relationships. It also provides information, advice, and support for people who are in platonic marriages or relationships.
- [Platonic Marriage: How to Have a Happy Marriage Without Sex]: A book by Linda Wolfe that explores the reasons, benefits, and challenges of platonic marriages. It also provides tips and strategies on how to make platonic marriages work.
- [Platonic Love: A Friendship That Lasts a Lifetime]: A podcast by Dr. Helen Fisher that discusses the science and psychology of platonic love. It also features interviews with people who are in platonic marriages or relationships.
Platonic marriage is a new trend or an old solution that can suit different needs and preferences of different people. It is not a lesser or inferior form of marriage, but a different and valid one. Platonic marriage can be a rewarding and fulfilling way of living with someone you love as a friend.