Terisa Greenan and her boyfriend, Matt, are enjoying a rare day of Seattle sun, sharing a beet carpaccio on the patio of a local restaurant.
Matt holds Terisa's hand, as his 6-year-old son squeezes in between the couple to give Terisa a kiss.
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Not all ethical sluts are polyamorous, and not all people in polyamorous relationships have the "ethical slut" attitude.
The difference between a polyamorist and a swinger is that a polyamorous person has broad-spectrum involvement in their partners' lives, including love.
Swingers are largely there for the sex, often for the novelty of an unfamiliar partner.
If they come to this conclusion to resolve a Love Triangle or Love Dodecahedron, then it may be the subtrope Marry Them All.
Areas of difference arise regarding the degree of commitment, such as in the practice of casual sexual activities, and whether it represents a viewpoint or a relational status quo (whether a person without current partners can be considered "polyamorous").
In the process, they rearrange themselves: Matt's hand touches Vera's leg. The child, seemingly unconcerned, puts his arms around his mother and digs into his meal.
Terisa and Matt and Vera and Larry—along with Scott, who's also at this dinner—are not swingers, per se; they aren't pursuing casual sex.
Polyamorous relationships can be open, where the relational partners agree to permit romantic or sexual relationships with other people, or closed, where those involved do not engage in relationships outside of the defined set of committed partners.
The practice of engaging in closed polyamorous relationships is sometimes called polyfidelity.