FAQ: Is there a limit to how many people can be involved in a polyamorous relationship or network?

No. As long as your emotional energy and physical safety are not compromised by your arrangement, you’re fine. Some people find their time and energy stretched thin by having two partners; some people juggle six or more partners and an active dating life with ease! Everyone is different, so don’t make assumptions about your own needs based on what you see other people doing.

Neither closed/polyfidelitous relationships nor extended poly networks have a set numerical limit on them. The circumstances and realities of each individual person’s life, schedule, emotional needs, and other things all come into play, and each situation is different.

The bigger your poly network or polycule, the more important it is to keep the lines of communication open about issues of safety:

  • Everyone should know and disclose their STI status to their partners. That means getting tested regularly!
  • Everyone should know and enforce their own boundaries about safe sex, and disrespecting or pushing those boundaries should not be tolerated.
  • If things like BDSM/kink are being engaged with, everyone should be clear about their philosophies, methods, and risk tolerances.
  • If there is a dangerous person anywhere in the network - an abusive partner, a stalker ex, a threatening family member - people in the network deserve the honesty and resources to manage this safely and with minimal drama. 

In this, as in all other things, the key is to know yourself and your needs so you can advocate for them, and know your partners and their needs so you can grow together and love each other in a healthy way. 

Previously answered questions on this: