Multi-partner relationships, between three or more partners where a sexual relationship does not occur between all of the parties involved. The term open relationship is sometimes used interchangeably with the closely related term polyamory , but the two concepts are not identical. The main unifying element to open relationship styles is non-exclusivity of romantic or sexual relationships. Prevalence[ edit ] The examples and perspective in this section may not represent a worldwide view of the subject.
You may improve this article , discuss the issue on the talk page , or create a new article , as appropriate. Both men and women in these, especially in closed groups, are also more likely to be in managerial jobs. Most also are either childfree , or post child-rearing. Open relationships may create a sense of jealousy , attachment , or possessiveness, all of which are challenges for a relationship to work through.
Neither barrier device use such as condoms nor more vigilant STI testing and vaccination can eliminate such risk,  but can reduce the statistical increase attributable to nonmonogamy. Successful open relationships[ edit ] One of the most significant factors that aids a relationship in being successful is that it is about making the relationship fit the needs of all parties involved.
No two open relationships will be the same, and the relationship will change due to the current circumstances at each specific moment. The style of the open relationship will mirror the parties' involved values, goals, desires, needs and philosophies. By taking the time to develop a clear idea of what both partners want out of the openness of a relationship, it allows the parties involved to self-reflect, process their emotions, deal with possible conflicts, and for those transitioning from monogamy to nonmonogamy find ways to cope with the change.
Topics that are commonly found in negotiations between couples include honesty, the level of maintenance, trust, boundaries and time management. This helps to reassure each partner in the relationship that their opinion is important and matters.
However, although ability to veto can be a useful tool in negotiation, a successful negotiation and open relationship can still occur without it. Some reject veto power because they believe it limits their partner from experiencing a new relationship and limits their freedom.
They also help people to feel safe and that they are just as important in the open relationship as their partners. Some couples create a physical relationship contract. These can be useful in not only negotiating, but also clearly articulating the needs, wants, limits, expectations, and commitments that are expected of the parties involved. Even though having a serious commitment with one partner is common, negotiating the time spent among all partners is still important. Although the desire to give an unlimited amount of love, energy, and emotion to others is common, the limited amount of time in a day limits the actual time spent with each partner.
Some find that if they cannot evenly distribute their time, they forego a partner. Swinging sexual practice Swinging is a form of open relationship in which the partners in a committed relationship engage in sexual activities with others at the same time. Swingers may regard the practice as a recreational or social activity   that adds variety or excitement into their otherwise conventional sex lives or for curiosity. Swingers who engage in casual sex maintain that sex among swingers is often more frank and deliberative and therefore more honest than infidelity.
Some couples see swinging as a healthy outlet and means to strengthen their relationship. Swinging can take place in various contexts, including spontaneous sexual activity involving partner swapping at an informal social gathering of friends, a formal swinger party or partner-swapping party, and a regular gathering in a sex club or swinger club or residence.
Polyamory Polyamory is the practice, desire, or acceptance of having more than one intimate relationship at a time with the knowledge and consent of everyone involved. It is often described as consensual, ethical, or responsible nonmonogamy. The word is sometimes used in a broader sense to refer to sexual or romantic relationships that are not sexually exclusive, though there is disagreement on how broadly it applies; an emphasis on ethics, honesty, and transparency all around is widely regarded as the crucial defining characteristic.
While "open relationship" is sometimes used as a synonym for "polyamory" or "polyamorous relationship", the terms are not synonymous.
The "open" in "open relationship" usually refers to the sexual aspect of a nonclosed relationship, whereas "polyamory" refers to the extension of a relationship by allowing bonds to form which may be sexual or otherwise as additional long-term relationships.
A subset of polyamory is group marriage or polyfidelity. This type of relationship functions as an expanded marriage, where no member is sexually or romantically involved with anyone other than the group's members.