Assessment guidelines and clinical implications for therapists working with couples in sexually open marriages

Abby Girard, Allison Brownlee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations

Abstract

Over time, there has been a significant population that adheres to non-traditional relationship constructions. Whether this is seen as polyamory, swinging, or open marriage, these couples have been marginalized by their monogamous peers and risk being ostracized if they reach out for help from professionals. As therapists, there is a lack of information about non-monogamous couple dynamics and assessment. Additionally, there is a disparity in the training that clinicians receive to be competent in working with couples in non-monogamous relationships. The authors begin by reviewing current literature about the population of interest and define sexually open marriage, as it will be understood throughout the writing. The authors then go on to suggest assessment guidelines, clinical implications for working with couples in sexually open marriages and finally explore limitations and issues that therapists could face when working with this population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)462-474
Number of pages13
JournalSexual and Relationship Therapy
Volume30
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • assessment
  • clinical considerations
  • couples therapy
  • non-monogamy
  • polyamory
  • self of the therapist
  • sexually open marriage

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