Originally Posted by KitWalker
What? They EXPECT monogamy in France? When did that start?
(Just kidding. It's a funny stereotype.
Actually, he was Canadian, I'm the French one, so maybe that's why :P
More seriously, I'm not saying the assumptions don't exist. I'm saying that in my opinion, it would be useful to question them and start from the ground up, making the rules for that specific relationship together. I remember telling couples, as an exercise I had tried, to say in a list what constituted cheating and what didn't, and whether they thought their partner felt differently. The lists never matched between partners, yet partners always said "he/she would have the exact same definitions, I mean, cheating is cheating, it's the same for everyone".
It was NEVER the same. For some cyber was fine but not kissing, for some it was the opposite, for some oral didn't count, for some being naked in the same room regardless of the circumstances did count, etc.
A friend of mine started a relationship with an ace. He told me he couldn't believe how much we assume. Due to the revelation that they had different sexualities, they started talking about pretty much everything, things that had nothing to do with sexuality. He said that things he took for granted she had never considered, and vice-versa.
It's not just the monogamy assumption that is (sometimes) made. Some people will assume that falling in love is fine if "nothing happens", yet their partner will feel betrayed. Some people will assume that sex without feeling is normal, and that everybody does it but pretends not to. I have known many men who said all men slept around, some were just lying about it more, and that it was part of the way things were that you hid it from your wife, and the wife turned a blind eye if you weren't obvious. The idea of actual monogamy to them was as realistic as a fairy tale you tell children.
I think it's a very toxic idea to think your partner will have the same ideas that you do and not ask them about it. Only recently I had a talk with my boyfriend about warning me about what he's doing, where he's going, etc, and he never realised how much I worried when I don't know, and that I don't even care where he's going or what he's doing provided he sends me a text saying "I'll be late tonight" or something.
To me, learning I'll be late and not telling my boyfriend immediately would mean I don't care about him. To him, well, he just didn't even think to do it, it's not that he didn't want to. I had always assumed people were the same as me, that the first thing you'd do, say, in a traffic jam, is let your loved one know you're in a traffic jam. It turns out most people figure they can talk about that once they get home.
These are a few examples but there are many. We're different people and trying to use a set of rules and apply it to everyone doesn't work. I wish they taught you in school that you need to discuss things with partners, and that you can't just assume they feel the same way you do, even when it seems so obvious to you.