New Book on Open Relationships

This post is also available in: Nederlands English (Engels)

We all love the parties, don’t we? What we don’t love so much are the sometimes awkward or even painful conversations we have with our partners before and afterward. So, let me introduce you to my new book:

OPEN: Conversations for People Considering an Open Relationship

Book Cover of OPEN: Conversations for People Considering and Open Relationship by James Whittard, PhD

“OPEN is an essential toolkit on your journey of self-discovery and pleasure.”

– Emma Sayle, Founder & CEO, Killing Kittens Ltd.


I’m a globally recognized expert on human behaviour

I’ve had 13 years of experience in monogamy, and 13 years in an open relationship. I want to start a conversation with you about the parts of being in an open relationship that we don’t talk about very much. The unsexy bits. The misunderstandings, jealousy, and boundary breaches that can cause unhelpful turmoil in our relationships.

Being in an open relationship is amazing, but it’s also the razor’s edge separating incredible adventure from unbearable exclusion.

Expanding your sexual canvas

Sex is a large part of the intimacy landscape in a committed relationship. If a couple can find a way to expand that canvas, then the adventure brings with it a whole new spectrum of experiences that can be shared. But the edges of the canvas are fluid; changing, often invisible, and treacherously sharp. If a couple doesn’t define those boundaries well, it may have catastrophic consequences, causing irreparable harm to the intimacy such an adventure was intended to deepen.

  Most open relationships have rules and boundaries that require negotiation.


Negotiations cover expected boundaries like what kinds of sexual expression are permitted by your partner with a third party, but quickly encompass a myriad of micro-boundaries like who pays for drinks and where to have sex. For example:

  • Can you bring someone home? If so, can you use the bed you share with your primary partner?
  • Can you bring someone home when the kids are at home? When the kids are asleep?
  • If you go to a hotel to avoid all of that, who pays for it?
  • Can money from the primary partnership coffers be used to fuel a third-party sexual experience for only one of the partners? If so, is there a limit to what can be expensed?

These are only a few of the hundreds of tiny boundaries that become exposed once a couple embarks on an open relationship journey.

  I wish I had known that many years ago.

What you’ll learn

My book will provide a starting place for you: a space for clarification of what an open relationship might be like for you, and for your current or future partner(s). You will have a clearer view of what this kind of relationship can offer you, and a much clearer understanding of how to navigate it in a way that allows you to capitalize on the adventure while minimising the risks of injuring either yourself or your partner in the process.

Imagine you and your partner in a loving and committed relationship where you are fully aware of and support each other’s sexual expressions. Imagine being known, loved, and celebrated for who you really are — all of you, not just part of you. Imagine loving your partner in the same way. That’s what I’m offering you in OPEN.

You’ll learn the core conversations that you and your partner should have before you begin an open relationship, in order to ensure the best chance of you finding a path to adventure that is life-giving and fun for both (and all) of you. You’ll learn about the evolutionary psychology of sexuality belonging and loyalty so that you have a handle on the kinds of things that humans can, and sometimes can’t, control.

You’ll learn about trust, transparency, boundaries, and freedoms. You’ll also learn about allergies and fetishes, which drive the pain and pleasure points of open relationships. You’ll learn to distinguish between the kinds of compromises you should be making for your partner’s pleasure, and the kinds of sacrifices that you should avoid.

At the end of the book, I’ll give you practical tools too, like a checklist of permissions, and an Open Agreement that you can write down, if you choose to write something down as a couple.

  I’ll share my juicy stories with you as well.

Ultimately, I wrote this book because when I needed it, it did not exist. Well, it does now, and my hope is that these conversations help to ensure that your open relationship is a life-giving and mutually supportive sex-fest for both you and your partner.

Please message me if you want to chat. I’m happy to help if I can. You can find my information by clicking on the banner below.

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