Non-monogamy advocates are urging Facebook to be more open


A group that supports ethical non-monogamy sent an open letter to Meta on Thursday, urging Facebook to allow users to list more than one relationship status on their profiles.

That Letter, initiated by the Organization for Polyamory and Ethical Non-monogamy, or OPEN, said Facebook’s current policies are “arbitrary” and “exclusive.” Signers included leaders from groups such as the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom and the Center for Positive Sexuality.

A spokesman for Meta said the company was reviewing the letter and noting that one of the statuses users can choose on Facebook is “in an open relationship.” The change requested by the petitioners would allow them to list all their romantic partners.

About 20 percent of people say they have engaged in some form of consensual non-monogamy a 2017 study. Today, the term “comprises a bajillion niche terms,” ​​according to Brett Chamberlin, OPEN’s executive director. Some of the most well-known terms include “polyamory,” which means multiple people dating at the same time, and “swinging,” which describes when people swap partners in relationships.

A more recent entry is “relationship anarchy,” in which participants dissolve all expected norms associated with romantic relationships and only adhere to rules established by the people involved.

“Ethical non-monogamy is nothing new, but technologies like the internet have made it easier for people to build communities and pursue lifestyles that may not have been accepted before in a mainstream culture,” Mr Chamberlin said.

Today, people interested in opening up their relationships can turn to podcasts and polyamory coaches for advice, and join dating apps like Feeld and #open to meet like-minded people. Consensual non-monogamy has even reached Vogue magazine, where one author asked: “Is monogamy over?

People have also become more public about their non-monogamous relationships by writing article and social media posts about their experiences.

Last month, Taylor Frankie Paul, a TikTok star with 3.6 million followers, opened up about her open marriage in a Live broadcast. Ms. Paul, a member of the Mormon Church, told viewers that she and her husband and some of their friends would engage in “soft swinging” where “you don’t completely switch and go all the way.” Ms Paul also said that she and her husband are currently divorcing, prompted in part by Ms Paul’s decision to break the rules of their agreement.

The most prominent people who have publicly discussed their experiences with non-monogamy might be Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith. Last year Mr Smith told GQ over a period when his marriage was open.

“We gave each other trust and freedom, believing that everyone must find their own path,” the actor said. “And marriage must not be a prison for us.” Willow Smith, the couple’s daughter, spoke in “Conversation at the Red Table‘, a show she hosts with her mother and grandmother.

Part of the shift toward greater acceptance may be generational. in one YouGov survey which surveyed approximately 1,340 people and asked them to describe their “ideal relationship” on a scale from “completely monogamous” to “completely non-monogamous,” 43 percent of millennials said their ideal relationship would be at least slightly non-monogamous compared to 30 percent of Generation X and 25 percent of Baby Boomers.

Despite the increasing normalization of non-monogamy as a practice, Chamberlin said, many people who engage in it are still afraid to go public with their lifestyle.

“Due to the structure of your intimate relationships, you could be fired from your job, be denied housing, or lose a custody battle,” he said. Creating awareness and creating more acceptance for non-monogamous relationships is the goal of his organization, which he founded with two others in April.

“In the long run, one of the projects of culture and society is to give people more space to live in the consensual relationships they choose,” he said. He pointed to the LGBTQ rights movement as one of those projects. Consensual non-monogamy, he added, “is the next chapter.”

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