Differences between concubinage and adultery. Surely you have heard both terms but are you familiar with their differences?
Both terms are widely used at a legal level just as you may have heard them before associated with religion, podcasts, marriage counselors… Adultery and concubinage are often confused but there are marked differences between the two.
Today we will show you what you need to know to learn to differentiate between both terms. Let’s start!
Adultery vs Concubinage
Both terms are associated with relationships that are forged outside the institution of marriage. While the former term is considered immoral, the latter is legally recognized and practiced by many people. Both are found in similar contexts but are mistakenly thought to be the same and are even used as synonyms.
Adultery and concubinage are two different terms and have unique concepts that make them admissible in the vocabulary of our society.
What is adultery?
It can be defined as the sexual union between two people when one of them maintains a marital relationship with another person. It is closely related to infidelity and in some countries, it is grounds for divorce if sufficient evidence is provided. Adultery is morally censored and even in some cultures, it can be considered a crime since it goes against social and moral values and respect for the construction of a healthy society.
From the point of view of religion, adultery is a sin and, depending on which religion is practiced, is severely punished. Levels of adultery can vary. There are those who only limit it to consummated sexual relations and others who consider adultery even the desire with the look and thought of another person who is not your spouse.
Maintaining a sentimental relationship with a third party is also considered adultery since they are normally also accompanied by sexual relations. The term applies to both men and women as both can cheat on their partners equally. Over time, it has become a deplorable practice that has caused the separation of many families, the depression of several people, and even suicide in extreme cases.
Adultery is considered a lack of marital duty as it is infidelity at its best. As mentioned at the beginning, one of the main causes of divorce that exists is adultery. The authorities have proven it and the spouse who reports the infidelity will have the court ruling in his favor at the end of the trial.
What is Concubinage?
This term is accepted by society and in the legal-civil field as well. Concubinage is a form of union between two people who, for different reasons, do not believe in marriage. It is a sentimental-sexual relationship in which two people maintain a “marital” relationship but without being legally united by marriage.
What are the reasons that make a person choose concubinage?
The truth is that they are very diverse. There are those who cannot marry due to social differences, others because there is a pre-existing marriage but they are physically separated from this couple or have not filed for divorce, as well as religious, emotional, or immigration status reasons.
Concubinage is very common nowadays. Marriage is conceived by many couples as a simple role and they believe that it does not determine the level of bond that two people can have. Concubinage by choice is totally respectable since each couple is free to think as they wish and to exercise their relationship as they please.
At the legal level, concubinage is recognized by the rule of law and generates effects on the couple and the children alike. It also creates bonds with the rest of the family and helps give you the legal guardianship status that a spouse requires to support their partner during medical and legal situations.
Concubinage consists of a kind of “free union” but lasting that two people choose to maintain by living and cohabiting together as if they were already married. There are couples who remain in this status for many years and are legally recognized as a couple after at least 10 years of being in concubinage. The number of years required to recognize concubinage may vary depending on the country and the laws there.
Adultery vs Concubinage: The Real Differences
Understanding the concepts and basic aspects of both terms, you can begin to mention the main differences:
- Adultery is considered an offense and moral, social, and loyally rejected practice while concubinage is accepted at the civil level in different countries and is recognized within the law of each State. Religions may not support concubinage but it is not punishable to the same degree as adultery.
- Even when both activities involve sexual relations with other people outside of marriage, concubinage refers to maintaining them with a single person during the time they usually live together (which is usually quite long). Sexual relations are continuous with that person and, despite not being married, they stay together with a lot of commitment.
For its part, adultery is about sexual relations with one or more partners who are not your spouse. It is possible that at a certain moment a sustained relationship with one of these extramarital partners is maintained, but it is not recognized at any time as a good relationship on a social level.
- Concubinage represents a healthy union option between two people who prefer marriage and does not harm anyone’s feelings. It is something that requires consensus between both people and allows you to develop a healthy relationship. On the other hand, adultery does not involve the consent of both parties at any time and, in most cases, tends to damage the feelings of one or all of those involved due to the consequences and subsequent losses.
Conclusion: Differences between concubinage and adultery
Concubinage and adultery are two practices that have a long history and continue to be analyzed by society and the way it works. It is common to find them within the diversity of interpersonal relationships and both help to understand human nature in all its splendor.
Read also: What is a family?; What is Polygamy; Is Adultery a crime in Canada?; Adultery vs Concubinage
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