Polyamory is an increasingly popular lifestyle choice in which two or more people involved in a relationship decide to share an open relationship. As the polyamorous relationships grow in popularity and acceptance, more people are beginning to understand what they entail and why they work for some couples. From exploring how polyamory looks and how it may differ from monogamy, to its types and the potential cons, this article will discuss what polyamory is, the various types of polyamorous relationships, and its potential drawbacks.

What Is Polyamory?

At its core, polyamory is about having multiple relationships. People in polyamorous relationships may also be referred to as polyamorists. Polyamorists may refer to themselves as poly or have a variety of other terms to refer to their open relationships. Polyamorous relationships may involve couples or groups of people, and the relationships may be sexual, romantic, platonic, or some combination of these. In contrast to traditional monogamous relationships in which partners are exclusive to each other, polyamory encourages a person to open up about their needs and desires to other people, regardless of what type of relationship they are in.

Types of Polyamorous Relationships

Polyamorous relationships come in different shapes and sizes, and polyamorists may prefer different types depending on their desires and needs. There are several types of polyamorous relationships, including open, hierarchical, and vee relationships.

Open Relationships

In an open relationship, the partners are aware of the other partnersโ€™ involvement and consent to the relationship. The partners may engage in sexual activities with each other, with the consent of all involved. However, open relationships do not necessarily involve any romantic feelings beyond that between the primary and secondary partners.

Hierarchical Relationships

In a hierarchical relationship, there is usually a primary partner who is the focus of the relationship, and one or more secondary partners. Secondary partners may or may not have long-term commitments to the primary partner, and the partners may or may not engage in sexual activities with each other. The primary partner is usually considered to be the primary partner in all aspects of the relationship, and the secondary partners are expected to support and respect this hierarchy.

Vee Relationships

Vee relationships refer to relationships in which two or more people have a primary relationship with each other, but also have other relationships with various other people. These other partners may or may not be involved in sexual activities with the primary partners, and the relationships are often not hierarchical.

Drawbacks of Polyamorous Relationships

There are several potential drawbacks of polyamorous relationships. The most common one is jealousy, as all involved parties may feel a certain level of jealousy when another partner becomes involved. Other potential drawbacks include the potential for emotional complications, potential confusion over the boundaries of the relationship, and potential legal complications. Additionally, there may be a lack of safety in a polyamorous relationship, as there is less assurance of safety in multiple relationships than in a monogamous relationship. Additionally, there may be difficulty in finding other partners who are compatible with the primary relationship, as well as the potential for more conflict and arguments in a polyamorous relationship than in a monogamous relationship.


Polyamory is a lifestyle choice in which two or more people engage in an open relationship. There are several types of polyamorous relationships, including open, hierarchical, and vee relationships. While there are many potential benefits to being in a polyamorous relationship, there are also potential drawbacks, such as jealousy, emotional complications, confusion over boundaries, and potential legal complications. Ultimately, it is up to the individuals involved in the relationship to decide whether the potential drawbacks outweigh the potential benefits of the relationship.