Monday, September 21, 2009

Marriage Contracts and Pre-nups

I offer a bit of exotica from Relationship Reality Why marriage contracts are good for both spouses. Unless you are familiar with Robert Heinlein's science fiction or is a Libertarian, I doubt many Americans think about marriage contracts.  Hence, my calling this exotica:

A marriage contract is more detailed than a pre-nup in terms of what is expected from each party. It addresses specifics such as financially supporting a spouse who wants to further his or her education after marriage, the decision whether or not to have children, the responsibility of jointly incurred bills, and the detailed duties of both husband and wife, including the subject of sexual rights. These are just some of the many issues you will find in a marital contract. You decide what to put into it. It is a legally binding document of what each person will bring to the marriage table and what she or he expects from the other.

Marriage contracts have a distinct place in history; similar to a contract drawn up by the professional matchmakers of the Middle Ages, they are believed to have been originated by the Egyptians over two thousand years ago. There are some interesting ones that deal with privacy and scheduled intimacy.

One of the more interesting contracts was one drawn up between Jackie and Aristotle Onassis. Their contract had one hundred seventy issues outlined. Allegedly, sex was something that had to be scheduled like an appointment, with a twenty-four hour pre-request. Living arrangements were also explicit. Separate residences for each spouse on the Greek island of Skorpios, as well as staying at different hotels when on vacation, were negotiated into the contract.
It seems the idea got kicked around in Germany a few years back.

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