Books and Web sites on polyamory

Want to find out more about polyamory? Links aimed at therapists and health-care professionals who want to learn more about polyamory are at the bottom of the list. You can find a list of polyamory books here.

Beyond Monogamy New podcast by former BBC reporter Jonathan Kent and therapist Zayna Ratty, exploring the world of non-monogamy from a compassionate, inclusive perspective.

Poly in the Media This blog tracks references to polyamory and articles about polyamory in news media.

Loving Without Boundaries Poly blog and podcast by Kitty Chambliss, covering non-monogamy from an ethical, sex-positive perspective.

Multiamory A podcast offering new ideas and advice for multiple forms of love: everything from conscious monogamy to ethical polyamory and radical relationship anarchy.

Loving More The only nationwide magazine dedicated to polyamory, Loving More also hosts conferences and poly retreats throughout the country.

Poly Skeptic Polyamory from a skeptical, non-spiritual stance. They also have a companion podcast.

Unitarian Universalists for Poly Awareness A Web site an organization for Unitarian Universalists interested in polyamory; the UUPA also runs an email list. Curated list of poly links and resources

Alan’s List of Polyamory Events Compiled by the same person who does Polyamory in the Media, this is an often-updated list of polyamory-related conferences, workshops, and events going on all over the globe.

The Inn Between: Polyamory Pages Essays, safe-sex articles, advice on “coming out” poly, and other resources for polyamorous people, written by my wife.

PolyTampa Web site for the Tampa, Florida-based poly group.

The Ordinary Extraordinary A Weblog and journal of a polyamorous couple and their lives.

Poly in the Cities Minneapolis-based biweekly polyamory podcast.

Polyamory Society News, information, discussion, and resources, particularly for people who aren’t necessarily poly but know people who are. Forums A large, international online forum for people interested in polyamory.

PolyMatchMaker A poly-focused dating and forum site.

Creating a Line-Family A site with information for folks interested in multigenerational line families.

Polytical UK-based polyamory activist and organization site.

Links of interest to therapists and other professionals

How to educate your therapist about polyamory Guidelines for talking to a counsellor or therapist about poly-related issues.

What psychology professionals should know about polyamory PDF file put together by the NCSF to educate psychology professionals about polyamory.

Therapy with clients who are bisexual and polyamorous Written for therapists, this page discusses therapy in a bisexual and poly context.

Legitimizing alternative sexualities in psychology A short overview of the Community-Academic Consortium for Research on Alternative Sexualities (CARAS) and its role in helping therapists deal with non-traditional relationships.

Working with polyamorous clients in the clinical setting Article published in the Electronic Journal of Human Sexuality about therapy involving clients who are in ethical non-monogamous relationships.

And while we’re at it, some books on the subject. (Note: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.)

A World Beyond Monogamy: How People Make Polyamory and Open Relationships Work and What We Can All Learn From Them by Jonathan Kent The first in-depth, journastically-researched book on consensual non-monogamy to focus on the practice of non-monogamy throughout the world. Written by former BBC and Reuters journalist Jonathan Kent, based on years of interviews with people from North America to Singapore to Africa, this book goes beyond the limited personal experiences of American authors to take a global look at how polyamory happens around the world. Read my in-depth review here. (And despite what a few weird Internet creeps are saying, Jonathan Kent is actually a real person; he's not me.)
Can I Be Honest With You? An Edgy and Empowering Romantic Comedy Dating Memoir by Amy Palatnick A sometimes funny, sometimes touching, sometimes heartbreaking memoir about finding new models of love. There's a lot going on here: tantra, missed opportunities, awkwardness, tenderness, and kissing. Lots of kissing. There's something else here, too: genuine lessons from a life examined, delivered softly, without preachiness or lecturing.
It’s Called “Polyamory”: Coming Out About Your Nonmonogamous Relationships by Tamara Pincus and Rebecca Hiles A resource for people struggling to come out to family and friends about being polyamorous. This book helps you explain what polyamory is, answer questions like “isn’t polyamory bad for children?” and address common prejudices and misperceptions.
When Someone You Love Is Polyamorous: Understanding Poly People and Relationships by Dr. Elisabeth Sheff This is a resource intended to help the friends and family of a polyamorous person get a better understanding of polyamory. It offers a clear, non-threatening, and academically supported explanation of what polyamory is (and isn’t). Where the book It’s Called Polyamory is aimed at people who are coming out as polyamorous, this book is for the people they’re coming out to.
Rewriting the Rules: An Integrative Guide to Love, Sex and Relationships by Meg John Barker A guidebook for building healthy, happy, functional non-traditional relationships of all sorts.
Stories from the Polycule edited by Dr. Elisabeth Sheff A collection of anecdotes, stories, artwork, and essays by people in polyamorous relationships of all shapes and sizes from all over the world. Stories from the Polycule is sometimes heartwarming, sometimes sad, and always sheds light on what real-world poly relationships look like.
The Polyamorists Next Door by Dr. Elisabeth Sheff This book is the result of a longitudinal research study by sociologist Dr. Elisabeth Sheff on polyamorous families. It starts with an introduction to polyamory, then covers the ways that poly families operate, how poly families raise children, and more. Written in a dense, academic style, it is an excellent introduction to polyamory for non-poly folks.
Open All the Way: Confessions From My Open Marriage by Sadie Smythe (Kindle only) Sadie Smythe is a well-known blogger who writes openly, frankly, and compellingly about her experiences in opening her long-term marriage. In this book, she documents the ups and downs, the lessons, th pitfalls, and the happiness of her own journey from monogamy to non-monogamy. This entertaining book is good reading for anyone seeking to open their own marriage.
Love Unlimited: The Joys and Challenges of Open Relationships by Leonie Linssen This book is an overview of several different kinds of non-monogamous relationships, put together from interviews with 12 different non-monogamous families. Each section contains ideas, relationship agreements, and tools that these families developed on the way to building their relationships.
The Art and Etiquette of Polyamory: A Hands-on Guide to Open Sexual Relationships by Françoise Simpère Another personal narrative, this book describes the author’s process to coming to her own polyamorous arrangement, and talks about the rules and ideas that keep her relationships healthy and happy. It’s written from a very specific perspective (long-term couples who want lovers on the side), and as such describes only one particular kind of polyamory. It offers practical suggestions and how-tos for couples looking to arrange non-monogamous relationships.
The Ethical Slut: A Guide to Infinite Sexual Possibilities by Dossie Easton and Catherine Lizst Considered by many people to be one of the definitive guides to “responsible non-monogamy.” While it does not really discuss polyamory per se, but rather polysexuality–the practice of multiple sexual partners in an ethical framework–this book is a good read for anyone interested in polyamory.
Opening Up: A Guide to Creating and Sustaining Open Relationships by Tristan Taormino Part anecdote, part interviews with poly couples, part advice, this wonderful book is an outstanding answer to the question “So how do you make non-monogamy work, anyway?” Through interviews with folks practicing a wide variety of different forms of non-monogamy, this book covers several styles of polyamory, swinging, and even polyamory for single people. There’s a companion blog as well.
Open: Love, Sex, and Life in an Open Marriage by Jenny Block This book is a personal narrative of one “average girl next door” who just so happens to be in an open relationship. The book covers the ins and outs of her own relationship, the lessons she’s learned along the way, and examines why it’s still more socially acceptable to cheat than to be polyamorous.
Polyamory: Roadmaps for the Clueless & Hopeful by Anthony Ravenscroft Written with humor, wit, and style by a person with twenty years’ experience in polyamorous relationships, this book is a guidebook to the benefits, pitfalls, mistakes, and rewards of a poly life. Covers many of the mistakes the author has made without flinching, and lays out a roadmap for successful polyamorous relationships.
The Sex And Love Handbook: Polyamory! Bisexuality! Swingers! Spirituality! & Even Monogamy! A Practical Optimistic Relationship Guide by Kris A. Heinlein and Rozz M. Heinlein This book, an overview of many relationship styles and sexual practices, explores the emotions, philosophies, risks, and rewards of non-traditional sexual and romantic relationships. Written in an optimistic, enthusiastic style, it presents a wide range of relationship models engagingly and honestly.
Redefining Our Relationships: Guidelines for Responsible Open Relationships by Wendy-O Matik This book explores the realities of day-in, day-out non-monogamy, particularly as a conscious political and social act. It’s direct, in your face, and offers excellent insight on managing problems like jealousy.
The Myth of Monogamy: Fidelity and Infedelity in Animals and People by David P. Barash and Judith Eve Lipton Written by a husband and wife team of behavioral scientists, this book explores non-monogamy from a behavioral, genetic, and moral standpoint. The book is not hostile to monogamy, but it makes the statement that in humans, a relationship model is a matter of both biology and choice, and that monogamy is not more inherently “natural” than non-monogamy.
Polyamory in the 21st Century: Love and Intimacy with Multiple Partners by Deborah Anapol A follow-up to Polyamory: The New Love Without Limits (listed below), this book is a retrospective on Dr. Anapol’s life as a poly activist. While it has some sections that are likely to be useful to newcomers, this isn’t really a book aimed at those new to poly; instead, it’s a collection of Dr. Anapol’s personal experiences in polyamorous relationships.
The New Intimacy: Open-Ended Marriage and Alternative Lifestyles by Rev.Ronald M. Mazur This book advertises itself as “for non-traditionalists, those ready for new life and love affirmations.” The Rev. Dr. Ron Mazur has been an ordained minister, a university health educator, a clinical sexologist in private practice, and a pioneer in computer on-line networks.
The Lesbian Polyamory Reader by Marcia Munson and Judith P. Stelboum (Editors) A collection of stories, poetry, and essays on non-monogamous lesbian relationships, together with descriptions of solid frameworks for ethical non-monogamy.
Monogamy by Adam Phillips Written by a psychologist, this book examines the traditional concept of marriage in a society where divorce is altogether common.
Polyamory: The New Love Without Limits by Dr. Deborah T. Anapol This book focuses more on polyfidelity than on other kinds of polyamory, with a heavy emphasis on New Age spirituality, and is often recommended by those who combine polyamory and spirituality.
The Seven Natural Laws of Love by Dr. Deborah T. Anapol This book draws from thousands of interviews to try to create a set of rules which govern all loving relationships regardless of their form.
Lesbian Polyfidelity: A Pleasure Guide for all Women Whose Hearts are Open to Multiple Sexual Loves by Celeste West Recommended by an online visitor; I don’t know much about this book personally, but it’s received excellent reviews.

Last updated: Wed Dec 14, 2022