PEOPLE in open relationships are no less satisfied than their monogamous counterparts, according to newly acquired data from New York University’s Centre for Health, Identity, and Preventative Studies.

Researcher Christopher Stults spoke to The Guardian about the study and its findings.

“We wanted to see how these relationships form and evolve over time, and examine the perceived relationship quality, relationship satisfaction, and potential risk for HIV/STI infection,” Stults said.

The insights were determined through interviews conducted with ten gay couples in open relationships, spanning a variety of age groups.

“My impression so far is that they don’t seem less satisfied, and it may even be that their communication is better than among monogamous couples because they’ve had to negotiate specific details,” Stults said.

The study found that this negotiation between partners was important and that successful open relationships depended on establishing and following rules. Gay men in open relationships weren’t put at a disproportionate risk of HIV or other STDS either, according to Stults.

“To my knowledge, no one contracted HIV and only one couple contracted an STD,” Stults said.

The full results of the study are expected to be written up and published early next year.

Open relationships are common in the gay community.  The most recent Melbourne Gay Community Periodic Survey found that 32 per cent of gay men in Melbourne were in open relationships.

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