What is Polyamory?
Polyamory is the desire, practice or acceptance of having more than one loving relationship at a time in an honest and consensual way.Polyamorous is a descriptive term used by people who are open to more than one relationship (regardless of what kind of relationship they are or aren’t in at the current time).Poly is an abbreviation that is commonly used to refer to both of the above concepts.Poly relationships vary widely, depending upon the people involved. Relationships may be sexual, emotional, spiritual, or any combination thereof, according to the desires and agreements of the individuals involved. The number of people involved varies, as can the level of involvement of different partners. Not everyone will necessarily be involved with everyone else and some people within a polyamorous relationship may be monogamous. A poly relationship can be in any form, as long as everyone involved agrees to it.
What isn't polyamory?
Seeing someone behind your partner(s)’ back is not polyamory. The thing that defines a poly relationship is that everyone involved knows about, and agrees to, everyone else's involvement.It’s not swinging either; swinging is focused on sex as recreation whereas in polyamory the focus is on loving, romantic relationships. Polyamory isn’t about more sex, it’s about more love. Love is not a finite resource; ask any parent with more than one child and they will tell you that they don’t love one child any less because of their love for their other child. The same applies to poly relationships.Nor is it about men gathering together a harem of women. The image that many people have in their heads, of one man with many women (as in the tv show Big Love), is technically polygyny, the form of polygamy where a man can have more than one female partner, but women are not allowed to have more than one male partner. Polyamory, on the other hand, applies equally to everybody. In an ethical polyamorous relationship, the same opportunities are afforded to everyone, regardless of their sex or gender.
More info
‘Polyamory? What, like, two girlfriends?’ – a FAQ and resource page on polyamory
‘alt.polyamory’ - The original Polyamory webspace. Featuring a FAQ, resources and a Usenet newsgroup.

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