SANTA MONICA (CBSLA.com) — So-called “love contracts” between couples, or written agreements that detail specific promises partners make to each other in a relationship, are growing in popularity, but they may have no legal standing.
Toni Mantus and Gregg Sullivan said they hired an attorney to draft their contract, which breaks down how much time they’ll devote to shared hobbies and how often they will have sex.
“I promise that our date night is gonna be a weekend date and our sex life stays active,” said Toni. “It’s nice to have a contract and say, ‘Look, we did agree to this.’”
Gregg said he even made promises about how much weight he can gain and how many times he’ll visit the gym.
“I do that for myself to be the best man I can be for her,” he said.
Suzanne Pelka, a West Los Angeles sex therapist, said promising sex isn’t always what it’s cracked up to be.
“The more they feel like they’re doing this out of obligation, the less likely they’re going to want to have sex with you and the less good the sex is gonna be,” she said. “It’s really this false sense of control that we have because we don’t know what’s gonna happen tomorrow.”
Attorney Brian Kramer said he often gets requests for couple agreements, but told CBS2’s Suzie Suh that a person can’t regulate another person’s conduct under California law.
“You can regulate property, you can regulate support,” he said.
Suh reported that in the end, a person can’t take the “love contracts” to court if one half of a couple falls short of something they said they would do.
Kramer said, “You can’t do that in a prenuptial agreement and if you want a side agreement between the two of you, that’s fine, but you’re potentially jeopardizing the entire agreement.”
Kathie and Paul Atkins, who have been married for 33 years, said they don’t feel comfortable inking their intimacy.
“I personally wouldn’t want to be held to a piece of paper to make him want to be with me,” said Kathie.
Paul said, “I think if you feel the need to draw up a contract it’s because you haven’t taken the time to earn the other person’s trust.”