Thanks to everyone for your stories and honest answers! This was amazingly enlightening to me, which is what I was looking for. I do understand the legal ramifications and the need to protect the children, pass property on and spousal rights. That makes sense.
It also makes sense that many people come to poly after marriage, when in our society it is not something that is ever discussed as a viable option unless you happen to be around people who live a poly lifestyle. You just sort of seem to stumble upon it as a missing piece of the puzzle (to quote someone, sorry I forget who).
I also find it intriguing and thought provoking to re-examine what marriage actually means. I have been married, and I know that a piece of paper does not and will not guarantee faithfulness. And, I have come to the conclusion that a relationship will work or it won't based on the people involved and the effort put forth. Not because you stood up in a church. I have no delusions when it comes to this, but I do find it interesting that all involved have said that marriage is truly defined by the individual. Who says what it is or what it isn't? Traditional marriage had to be defined by someone somewhere a long time ago before it became a tradition, right?
In other words, I appreciate the interesting stories and the sharing of each persons journey. And, this does actually open up my field of vision in this area. I don't think I will change my mind and want to be married again, but I do understand it all better. Thanks everyone.