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The key to monogamy

A funny thing happened this week: A reader emailed me with a dare of sorts. "From your columns, I understand you're in a serious relationship with a man," it read. "Mazel Tov, it should be all you hope for." Then things got interesting: "I was wondering if you guys would experiment with something me and my wife do." Oh boy. I readied myself for the revelation of a kink I'd never even heard of before. Instead, he explained that as Orthodox Jews they observe Family Purity Laws, which, among other things, prohibit intercourse and physical intimacy -- even sharing a bed -- with a menstruating woman. While they do it for religious reasons, he believes that it's also caused the passion in his marriage to last longer. "I was wondering if this process would work for secular hetero couples as well," he wrote. "My theory is that there is a finite amount of passion in a sexual relationship; if you use it all at the beginning, there's not much left after the bloom has gone off the rose." He ended rather sweetly with a "P.S." to assure me he wasn't trying to save me or anything -- which is wise, that ship sailed long ago -- he just wanted to see if he could "do a little bit to help relationships last."

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