Is Monogamy Out?

By: Gay.com
2.1.2010

A recent study found that about half of all gay couples surveyed engaged in sex with people outside of the relationship. In a telling twist, the extra sex is disclosed to and approved by their partners.

The New York Times reports, “New research at San Francisco State University reveals just how common open relationships are among gay men and lesbians in the Bay Area. The Gay Couples Study has followed 556 male couples for three years — about 50 percent of those surveyed have sex outside their relationships, with the knowledge and approval of their partners.”

81605384 Researchers drew conclusions that the consent of the partner to have such liaisons creates a very different dating culture than monogamous straight couples. “With straight people, it’s called affairs or cheating,” said the study’s principal investigator, “but with gay people it does not have such negative connotations.”

The result? Researchers happily reported that, “open gay couples [are] just as happy in their relationships as pairs in sexually exclusive unions.” They note an earlier 1985 study actually found that open gay relationships outlasted traditionally monogamous ones. "“The combination of freedom and mutual understanding can foster a unique level of trust,” according to one expert.

So is the future of relationships? Experts think the data may be a signifier of what’s to come. Some are concluding, “boundary-challenging gay relationships represent an evolution in marriage — one that might point the way for the survival of the institution.”

Read the full NYT article here: Many Successful Gay Marriages Share an Open Secret

TELL US: What do you think of traditional monogamy versus open relationships? Have you ever tried an open relationship? What was your experience? 

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