Table of contents:

5 types of relationships for those who are not suitable for monogamy
5 types of relationships for those who are not suitable for monogamy

You can always revise the rules, expand the boundaries, or even get married to yourself.

5 types of relationships for those who are not suitable for monogamy
5 types of relationships for those who are not suitable for monogamy

It is believed that the need to mate for life is just a social construct created during the transition from hunting and gathering to farming. And by nature, we strive to spread our genes as actively as possible. The more partners, the more genetic diversity and "sperm wars", which means the stronger the species as a whole.

On the other hand, even in animals, it's not all about sex. You need to take care of pregnant females and offspring, and then there is a need for partner support: someone has to bring food and building materials for the nest. Some species stay together for a very short time, and some, such as swans, cannot live without each other.

As for people, it is difficult to say unequivocally whether we have an innate tendency to polygamy or monogamy. After all, we are biosocial creatures.

Our desires and needs are a complex conglomeration of evolutionary challenges, natural temperaments, emotional characteristics, cultural attitudes and personal principles.

In practice, monogamy suits some, but makes others unhappy. Only you yourself can choose how to build a relationship. Here are some alternatives to try (with the consent of other stakeholders, of course).

1. Polygamy

In polygamy, one of the partners is in a relationship with several people.

Polygamous marriage, namely polygamy (polygyny), is practiced in various cultures, for example in Muslim, as well as in some African societies. Polyandry (polyandry) is less common, but it also exists among national minorities that preserve traditions. For example, among the Tibetans of Nepal and some tribes in India.

From adultery, in which one of the spouses has a different relationship or a secret second family, polygamy is distinguished by openness, public approval and regulation.

It is assumed that a man in a polygynous marriage will take care of his wives and remain faithful to them. No promiscuity is provided. The fantasy “if I were a sultan” also has its downside - obligations. Many researchers consider wealth to be a prerequisite for polygamy.

As a rule, polygamy is closely related to certain religious and national traditions of a particular society, therefore, it should be recommended as a possible format of relations only to those who feel their connection with one or another tradition. As a rule, we are talking about marriage. In the secular version, romantic and sexual relations with several people will be more likely an open marriage or polyamory.

It is also important to note that classical polygamy involves an imbalance of opportunities. Someone, usually a man, has more rights. He may have several wives, while they are expected to be loyal only to the husband.

2. Polyamory

In modern Western culture, the romantic idea that everyone has their own soul mate is popular. And serial monogamy, consisting of the cycles "falling in love - exclusive relationship - parting", becomes a way to find this soul mate. At the same time, a new love or a strong attraction to someone on the side usually means either the collapse of intimacy, or a life of lies and suffering.

However, is it necessary to disagree with a loved one if you have romantic feelings for someone else? The proponents of polyamory think not.

From a polyamorous standpoint, it is perfectly legal to love more than one person. The main condition is transparency, that is, the consent and approval of all participants.

If a person wants to preserve the principles of polyamory, without turning his behavior into an ordinary betrayal, he informs the potential partner about this approach in advance. If new variables appear in a relationship that was previously exclusive, this should also be spoken out.

More than two people are involved in a polyamorous relationship, but what kind of connections they have with each other depends on the specific case. For example, person A may be in a sexual and romantic relationship with persons B and C. In this case, B and C are aware of each other's existence, but there is nothing between them. A variant is also possible in which B and C have a connection with each other. Or there is a separate partner.

It is difficult to list all the possible variations. The main principle is the awareness of all participants.

3. Open relationships

It is about an alliance between two people who remain a permanent couple, but at the same time admit the possibility of sexual relations with others.

An open relationship differs from polyamory in that in this case there is a main couple who may not inform their other partners about all the details.

Another possible difference is attitudes about romantic feelings. As a rule, the members of a couple do not consider it possible to fall in love with someone else, otherwise such a relationship will already become polyamorous.

An open relationship can be established initially, even at the stage when two people begin to meet and discuss things that are important to them. Some, on the contrary, decide to switch to this format after many years of monogamous marriage. This gives such couples the opportunity to experience new sexual sensations without giving up on a regular partner or family. At the same time, two people continue to maintain a priority emotional attachment to each other.

4. Friendship with privileges

The slightly clumsy translation of friendship with benefits describes a situation that can also be described as "friendship sex."

Such relationships simply do not contain a romantic component and do not imply the creation of a family. Such people do everything the same as ordinary friends, they just still have sex.

The expression "relationship without obligation" is also sometimes used, but it must be understood correctly. Actually, we have quite a lot of obligations to our friends: to support them in difficult situations, to trust, to be honest. Even if there is a sexual component in friendships, these things never go away. However, lover friends do not have the same obligations that couples have, and the boundaries in friendship are usually lined up stricter.

This kind of relationship is suitable for those who know how to separate sex and romantic feelings. However, there is a certain risk: if one is more emotional than the other, there will be trouble.

5. Loneliness, or Sologamy

Loneliness has a bad reputation and is considered by many to be their main fear. However, suffering from loneliness and being alone are not the same thing at all. Feeling unnecessary and not feeling connected with another person is possible both in marriage and with a bunch of sexual partners. Whereas loneliness gives a lot of freedom for self-development, allowing you to do exactly what you want.

In this case, your personal space, material resources and time belong only to you.

Remember, the main character of the film "Girls" said: “I generally decided not to get married. One is quieter. I want to eat halva, I want - gingerbread. " Considering how often domestic disagreements become a problem, this does not sound so naive.

If you feel good alone, the only thing that can get in the way of enjoying this state is public opinion. However, sociologists increasingly note that loneliness is no longer viewed with prejudice today. There was even such a phenomenon as sologamy - marriage to oneself. If the passport is not stamped, you can arrange a holiday and take vows to yourself, as thousands of people around the world have already done.

However, it is not at all necessary to arrange such public appearances. To become a conscious loner, you just need to give up the attitude to seek and build new relationships. At least until you change your mind (it may never happen, but so what?).

Loneliness does not necessarily equal asexuality. People who choose him can go on dates and have sex, they just do not strive to build relationships and create a family. If you are an ideological loner, people with whom you have something planned, it is better to honestly warn about this, so as not to hurt other people's feelings.


  • Polygamy- the “head of the family” has several wives or husbands, depending on gender. It is practiced primarily in traditional cultures.
  • Polyamory- there are more than two people in a romantic and sexual relationship. Relationships are equal, everyone is aware of this state of affairs and approves of it.
  • Open relationship- each paired, with the approval of the partner, can have sexual relations with someone else.
  • Friendship with privilege - the same as an ordinary friendship. Only with sex.
  • Ideological loneliness, or sologamy - deliberate rejection of romantic and sometimes sexual relationships.

On a monogamous marriage, the light did not converge like a wedge. But building a harmonious relationship even with one person is not so easy. So, starting them at the same time with several, it is important to understand whether your resources are enough for this.