Commitment in Polyamorous Relationships

Master's thesis by Elaine Cook (aka Cascade Spring Cook)

This thesis is a research project that was written in partial fulfillment of the requirement for the degree of Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (Psychology) at Regis University in Denver, Colorado. (c) 2005 by Elaine Cook

It was approved in November, 2005.

I interviewed 7 long term polyamorous couples to explore the nature of a commitment that is not defined by sexual exclusivity. I described the nature of the relationships that respondents are involved in, their conceptualization of the nature of commitment, the ways that they maintain their primary bond, and the benefits of polyamory as perceived by the participants. The common elements leading to a successful primary relationship were mutual appreciation, emotional closeness, honesty, good communication, and flexibility. The respondents were oriented towards personal growth.

The thesis may be read as several web pages (see below), or accessed as a .pdf file.   An abbreviated version may be read on the Electronic Journal of Human Sexuality.
If you have limited time, you may wish to skip the academic background and jump straight to Chapter 4: Results.

Commitment in Polyamorous Relationships
Chapter 1: Introduction
Chapter 2: Literature Review
Chapter 3: Method
Chapter 4: Results
Chapter 5: Discussion
Appendix A: Questions for Thesis Study
Appendix B: Glossary
Table of Contents
Abstract (Academic)

Please feel free to link to for access to this paper
(the location within the site might change).
Please do not copy the contents to another website.
You may contact me at cascade(at)

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