Open relationships can be just as satisfying as monogamous ones
People in open relationships are as happy as their coupled-up counterparts, says a new study done by the University of Guelph. In consensual, non-monogamous relationships, partners agree to engage in multiple sexual or romantic relationships.
Lead author of the study, Jessica Wood said, “We found people in consensual, non-monogamous relationships experience the same levels of relationship satisfaction, psychological well-being and sexual satisfaction as those in monogamous relationships.”
However, consensually non-monogamous relationships still attract stigma, she added. Wood further said, “They are perceived as immoral and less satisfying. They are villainised and viewed as bad people in bad relationships, but that’s not the case.”
More than 140 people in non-monogamous relationships and more than 200 in monogamous ones were surveyed for the study. The researchers found people in non-monogamous relationships were just as satisfied with the relationship they had with their main partner as those in monogamous ones. Wood’s analysis concluded that one important predictor of relationship satisfaction is not relationship structure but rather sexual motivation.
“This research shows us that our choice of relationship structure is not an indicator of how happy or satisfied we are in our primary relationships,” she added.
The full findings are published in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships.
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