Protecting Love: The Role of PrEP for People in Open or Polyamorous Relationships



In today's world, some people consent to relationships with more than one romantic partner simultaneously. This can be referred to as ethical non-monogamy or polyamory. It's about being open to loving more than one person. However, when you're in this kind of relationship, keeping everyone safe and healthy becomes important. One way to do this is by using a medicine called PrEP, which helps prevent the spread of HIV, a serious virus that attacks the body's immune system.

Why People Choose Multiple Partners: More and more, society accepts that romantic feelings can be shared for more than one person simultaneously.

Ethical non-monogamy and polyamory are based on the ideas of sharing love, caring for multiple partners, and being honest with each other. As these ideas become more popular, more people feel comfortable choosing this way of life.

The Importance of Safety and Health: Being in relationships with multiple partners means taking extra steps to ensure everyone's health and safety. This includes regular visits to the doctor, open conversations about health history and practices, and agreements on how to protect each other. It's all about looking out for one another and ensuring every relationship is healthy and respectful.

Understanding PrEP and Its Benefits:

PrEP stands for Pre-exposure Prophylaxis, and it's a medicine that people at risk for HIV can take to prevent getting the virus. It's especially useful for people in open or polyamorous relationships, as it adds extra protection to other safe sex practices.

Typically prescribed PrEP (Pre-exposure Prophylaxis) medications for the prevention of HIV infection include:

  1. Truvada (emtricitabine/tenofovir disoproxil fumarate, or FTC/TDF): Approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use in adults and adolescents, Truvada is taken as one pill once a day. It was the first PrEP medication approved by the FDA and has been widely used since its approval in 2012.

  2. Descovy (emtricitabine/tenofovir alafenamide, or FTC/TAF): Approved by the FDA in 2019 for HIV prevention in all adults and adolescents, except for individuals at risk via vaginal sex. Accordingly, Descovy offers a similar efficacy to Truvada, but with potentially fewer side effects on kidney function and bone density.

  3. Apretude (cabotegravir extended-release injectable suspension): Approved by the FDA in December 2021, Apretude is the first long-acting injectable form of PrEP. Therefore, it is administered as an injection once every two months, after an initial loading dose is given as two injections one month apart. Apretude is approved for use in at-risk adults and adolescents weighing at least 35 kilograms (about 77 pounds).

The choice between these medications depends on individual health profiles, risk factors, and personal preferences. Truvada and Descovy are oral medications that require daily intake. Apretude offers an injectable option with less frequent dosing, which might be preferable for those who find it challenging to adhere to a daily regimen. It's important for individuals considering PrEP to consult with a healthcare provider to determine the most appropriate medication based on their specific circumstances.

How PrEP Fits into Open and Polyamorous Relationships:

For those in open or polyamorous relationships, PrEP is a key tool for maintaining sexual health. It's about taking responsibility for your health and the health of those you're involved with. Choosing to use PrEP is a decision made through open discussion and agreement among all partners, highlighting the importance of communication and mutual care in these relationships.

Getting Started with PrEP:

If you're interested in PrEP, the first step is to talk to a healthcare provider who understands your lifestyle. They can help you decide if PrEP is right for you, and guide you through the process of starting it. Many insurance plans cover PrEP. There are programs available to help cover costs for those without insurance. Click Here to search for a healthcare professional in your area.


As society grows more accepting of alternative relationships, it's crucial to prioritize the health and safety of everyone involved. PrEP offers a powerful way for people in open or polyamorous relationships to protect themselves and their partners from HIV. By embracing open communication, care, and preventive measures like PrEP, individuals can fully and safely explore their relationships.

Choosing to use PrEP is a proactive step in taking control of your sexual health. It shows a commitment to the well-being of all partners in an open or polyamorous relationship. It's about making informed choices and supporting each other in a lifestyle that values love and connection in multiple forms.

Article Written by:

Marilu Esplandiu