“Our Rules” – one Gay Couple’s Relationship Contract

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<PLEASE SHARE! Today I received an email from a friend that I felt was too interesting not to share with yall– with my friend’s reluctant permission, of course.

The email reads:

Came across this today. Why did I even give it a chance when we had to spell out 18 rules that should have been obvious? Sheesh, I was stupid!

Attached was the following 3 page relationship contract that my friend, J had his boyfriend, E sign after they had some issues—i.e., see rule number 18, however in J’s boyfriend’s case rule 18 may have needed to be rule number 1.  The contract seems pretty legit right down to the individual page numbering with initials and the final signatures with dates, even taking the time to spell their names out under their signatures.  I am surprised they didn’t go to see their local notary public while they were at it.

The list addresses a wide variety of issues in their relationship from how often they must compliment each other (once a day apparently is the going rate) to basic up-keep of their home.  One that particularly stuck out to me was rule number 10 about how often sex must occur:

10.  We must have sex at least three to four times per week.  If one person does not want to on that occasion, they must give a legitimate reason why.
Valid Reasons:

  • Had a crappy day
  • Too  drunk
  • Upset (specifically only grief-related)
  • An excuse cannot be given twice in a calendar week (Sunday – Saturday)

Must be grief-related, huh?  So someone has to die in order for them to skip sex?  Also with the specification of a “calendar week (Sunday – Saturday)” does that mean you are allowed to skip both Saturday and Sunday consecutively? I mean, you never know how your weekend plans are going to shape up.

Needless to say the relationship has since ended, so apparently for them a contract wasn’t enough to hold a relationship together.  What do you think?  Does this go too far?  Or in the age of Grindr, open relationships and loosening definitions of cheating- is spelling out rules like this a necessary evil in the world of modern dating?  Comment below!

Special thanks to J for sending this to me and allowing me to start this discussion around his relationship.

Full relationship contract transcribed below the images of the full contract.

Our Rules

1. If either of us uses Grindr / hook-up methods, it is only with the explanation to the other person that we are in a relationship and only looking for mutual friends to both hang out with

2.  No one in [location] can know E lives in J’s apartment and/or that we are working on our problems.

3.  J and E must equally contribute to household chores.  We will make a schedule to ensure this happens and we no longer live in a pigsty.

4.  Dog walking will be done by E in the morning and J at night.  If more than twice per day, each will walk 1 dog that time.

5.  J is allowed 1 hour maximum per day on the computer at home.

6.  Don’t use Mark as an “ear” for our problems because we both agree he is two-faced.

7.  E and J are each allowed two nights per week to themselves with these stipulations:
– The two nights are not consecutive
– If going out alone, it cannot be to a nightclub or gay bar

8. Take about 30 minutes per day to discuss with each other how the other is feeling and/or their day’s events or important news.

9.  You (each person) must clean up after themselves, i.e. take dishes to kitchen & rinse, clean up after cooking, throw trash made away.

10.  We must have sex at least three to four times per week.  If one person does not want to on that occasion, they must give a legitimate reason why.
Valid Reasons:
–    Had a crappy day
–    Too drunk
–    Upset (specifically only grief-related)
-An excuse cannot be given twice in a calendar week (Sunday – Saturday)

11.  When parting company to go to work, run an errand, or in general leave the property we live on, we must tell each other bye and let the person know that they are loved, even if we are mad or upset.

12.  We both must compliment the other once per day minimum.

13.  If upset at another, you must give space and time, if needed, but the person cannot leave the property.

14.  We must work out three times per week minimum together.

15.  Unless it is your selected night out, we must go to bed together.

16.  We must have one “date night” per week, even if it is a free activity.

17.  Dogs need to be on a regular feeding & walking schedule and we will walk them both together for about 20-30 minutes every day.

18.  No cheating.

Signed and agreed to on the 29th of July, 2010.

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