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People who identify as polyamorous believe in an open relationship with a conscious management of jealousy; they reject the view that sexual and relational exclusivity are necessary for deep, committed, long-term loving relationships.In 1999 Zell-Ravenheart was asked by the editor of the OED to provide a definition of the term, and had provided it for the UK version as "the practice, state or ability of having more than one sexual loving relationship at the same time, with the full knowledge and consent of all partners involved." Separate from polyamory as a philosophical basis for relationships are the practical ways in which people who live polyamorously arrange their lives and handle certain issues, as compared to those of a more conventional monogamous arrangement.Unitarian Universalists for Polyamory Awareness, founded in 2001, has engaged in ongoing education and advocacy for greater understanding and acceptance of polyamory within the Unitarian Universalist Association.At the 2014 General Assembly, two UUPA members moved to include the category of "family and relationship structures" in the UUA's nondiscrimination rule, along with other amendments; the package of proposed amendments was ratified by the GA delegates.
With only minor exceptions no developed countries permit marriage among more than two people, nor do the majority of countries give legal protection (e.g., of rights relating to children) to non-married partners.
In jurisdictions where civil unions or registered partnerships are recognized, the same principle applies to divorce in those contexts.
There are exceptions to this: in North Carolina, a spouse can sue a third party for causing "loss of affection" in or "criminal conversation" (adultery) with their spouse, although they are infrequently enforced.
Accordingly, they include parallel entitlements, obligations, and limitations.
Among the latter, as in the case of the New Zealand Civil Union Act 2005, there are parallel prohibitions on civil unions with more than one partner, which is considered bigamy, or dual marriage/civil union hybrids with more than one person.