Bloom Community Dictionary

glossary of sex-positive terms

What is an open relationship?

Open relationships are a form of non-monogamous relationships where both partners can engage in sexual activities outside of the relationship. This type of relationship is different from monogamy in that it allows for more than one romantic partnership, usually with the understanding that all parties involved know and accept the arrangement.

More about open relationships

Open relationships come with a lot of different interpretations and variations, but generally speaking, they involve two people who have agreed to an arrangement whereby they can both engage in sexual activities with other people while still maintaining their relationship. This could mean engaging in casual sex or having more serious romantic connections outside the primary partnership.

The primary benefit of an open relationship is that it allows each partner to explore their own desires without feeling like they're cheating on their partner or betraying them. Open relationships are also beneficial for those who don't want to commit to one person exclusively and prefer to have multiple partners at once. It also gives couples an opportunity to talk about boundaries and expectations regarding their outside partners, which can help prevent any misunderstandings or hurt feelings down the line.

At the end of the day, what works best for each couple is unique; some couples may find that an open relationship works better for them than monogamy, while others may be better suited for a traditional arrangement. Ultimately, any type of healthy relationship should be based on trust, respect and communication between both parties – whether it’s monogamous or non-monogamous – so couples should always make sure they’re communicating openly before deciding on any kind of arrangement.

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