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There are variant forms of open marriage (such as swinging and polyamory), each with the partners having varying levels of input on their spouse's activities.The term open marriage originated in sociology and anthropology.Individuals might claim to have open marriages when their spouses would not agree.Studies and articles that interview individuals without taking their married status into account may not receive accurate information about the actual "open" status of the marriage. (Blumstein & Schwartz, 1983, page 287) Couples may have an open marriage in principle, but not engage in extramarital sex.Other couples drop out of the open marriage lifestyle and return to sexual monogamy.These couples may continue to believe open marriage is a valid way of life, just not for them.(Blumstein & Schwartz, 1983, page 286) We've never spoken about cheating, but neither of us believe in it. Blumstein and Schwartz found that 15 percent of married couples share an agreement that allows extramarital sex, but only about 24 percent of men and 22 percent of women (or 6 percent and 5 percent of the total, respectively) who had such an agreement actually engaged in extramarital sex during the prior year.Open marriage is usually defined in terms of legally married, opposite-sex partners.

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Interviewed individually, the partners in some couples gave very different responses to this question; the respective replies from one married couple were Sure we have an understanding. Never go back to the same one.' See, that's where it's going to screw your mind up, to go back the second time to the same person. Spaniel and Cole found that 7 percent of couples would consider participating in an open marriage, but only 1.7 percent of couples reported having open marriages that actually included extramarital sex.

Data collected from these kinds of open marriages may not generalize to other kinds of open relationships.

For example, cohabiting couples tend to show higher levels of involvement in extra-relational intimacy compared to married couples.

A person of the opposite sex would not compete in this way, satisfying a different set of needs for their partner." (Weinberg, Williams, & Pryor, 1995, page 108) People who experience normal jealousy have at least nine strategies for coping with jealousy.

The problem-solving strategies include: improving the primary relationship, interfering with the rival relationship, demanding commitment, and self-assessment.

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