My name is Sherry Mason and I am a psychology student at the University of Central Oklahoma. I, along with a counselling student, Adam Everson, and professor of psychology, Dr. Alicia Limke, Ph.D., are executing research in an attempt to understand the relationship needs of polyamorous people and how those needs are met through multiple partners. As it stands, there is very little research about this community. This greatly disadvantages therapists as well as individuals/couples seeking treatment.
The survey link is as follows:
The survey takes approximately 45 minutes to complete and consists of questions about relationships, feelings toward being a sexual minority (i.e., polyamorous), and some general questions on personality. This study is open to individuals of all sexual orientations and gender identities. The applicant will also be entered into a random drawing for a $5.00 gift card to Amazon.com. The safety and privacy of all participants is highly important, we ask that anyone be allowed to share the link to this survey, but to refrain from disclosing any information about their involvement to keep their participation completely anonymous. This project has been approved by the University of Central Oklahoma Institutional Review Board #16107.
If you have any question or would like more information please feel free to contact me at: smason5 (at) uco.edu. Or my associate: Adam Everson, aeverson (at) uco.edu. Or my advisor: Dr. Alicia Limke, Ph.D., alike (at) uco.edu.
Thank you for your time and consideration!
Sherry Mason, AA Psychology
University of Central Oklahoma
Department of Psychology
A journalist for an international, reputable publication wants to write an intimate, thoughtful longform piece that follows a married couple as they start the process of opening up their marriage to ethical nonmonogamy. Ideally, this couple is in engaging in couples therapy as they navigate this new phase of their marriage; those conversations, recounted or recalled, would provide structure for the story and a way of clearly translating the complexity of the thought process of the couple. The couple could remain unidentifiable; ideally, the therapist would use his or her name, although that could possibly be discussed as well. This article would seek not to sensationalize this phase of the marriage, but explore it as an increasingly logical, even possibly conventional option, in a world in which the traditional family has already been reconceived and marriage itself has expanded its definitions. The piece, which could be part of a larger cultural reframing, has potential for high impact. If you're interested, please email asktristan [at] gmail.com and I'll connect you with the journalist.
Dr. Eli Sheff's new book, The Polyamorists Next Door: Inside Multiple-Partner Relationships and Families, has been released -- and I encourage you to buy it today. Doing so can help it become a top seller in its category, which can lead to a less expensive paperback version and hopefully more mainstream recognition.
Eli Sheff is an important voice in the poly world. She was a guest on my radio show, Sex Out Loud, and has been on panels about polyamory, an expert on TV shows discussing polyamory, and a frequent source of quotes for mainstream articles exploring non-monogamy.
Sheff is one of the premiere experts on children in polyamorous families, and so The Polyamorists Next Door is a fascinating and important look at families:
In colorful and moving details, this book explores how polyamorous relationships come to be, grow and change, manage the ins and outs of daily family life, and cope with the challenges they face both within their families and from society at large. Using polyamorists own words, Dr. Elisabeth Sheff examines polyamorous households and reveals their advantages, disadvantages, and the daily lives of those living in them.
. . . This book provides information that will be useful for professionals with polyamorous clients, educators who wish to understand or teach about polyamory, and especially people who wish to better understand polyamory themselves or explain it to their potential partners, adult children, or in-laws.
Go buy The Polyamorists Next Door today to help push it to the top of its category -- where it belongs!
A recent study by relationship researcher Terri D. Conley and four colleagues at the University of Michigan concludes that there is no evidence to suggest that monogamous folks are any more satisfied than non-monogamous ones.
The study is a review of other research on consensual non-monogamy, and appeared in Personality and Social Psychology Review with the title A Critical Examination of Popular Assumptions About the Benefits and Outcomes of Monogamous Relationships.
After reviewing the research, the study concluded a few things: that "sexually unfaithful" individuals were less likely to use barrier methods than consensually non-monogamous (CNM) individuals; that gay men in CNM relationships felt a comparable level of satisfaction to gay men in monogamous relationships; and that jealousy was lower, more manageable, and less problematic for people in CNM relationships. The study elaborates:
Men reported that their open relationships accommodated their intimacy needs as well as their desires for sexual diversity. Moreover, the men in these partnerships often felt more intimate with their partner when they agreed to be non-monogamous. Just as monogamy can provide a sense of support and protection, consensual non-monogamy can provide the emotional support of a primary partnership while also allowing exploration of other sexual relationships.
Over at Psychology Today, Bella DePaulo summarizes the study's findings in a series of three posts: Are Monogamous Relationships Really Better?, Satisfied? Jealous? On Deciding Not to Be Monogamous, and Is Polyamory Bad For Children?.