The term “Oligoamory” defines the relationship-philosophy as well as the lifestyle of committed and sustainable multiple-partner relationships involving only a select few participants.

The composite-phrase “Oligoamory” stems from the Greek ὀλίγος olígos, “a few” and Latin amor, “love”.

Because I accessed the view of Oligoamory through my intense involvement with the concept of Polyamory, there are several points of contact and overlaps with it.

Thus, concerning the spelling of the term, I decided to choose the Anglo-American version (with the y-ending) in order to keep its origin discernible as well as to pay tribute to the actual creators of the underlying word Polyamory (from Greek πολύ poly, “many, several”, and Latin amor, “love”), namely Morning Glory Zell-Ravenheart und Jennifer Wesp.

And to do justice to all the godfathers and -mothers: To the best of my knowledge, the first mention of the word “Oligoamory” was employed in March 2012 by the user “JohnG” on lifejournal.com with the intention to create an antithesis to the term Polyamory.

My ideas, which I am going to explain on these pages – constituting the meaning behind the term Oligoamory – will progress beyond average or rather common interpretation of polyamorous values that are relevant to multiple relationships like e.g. mutual agreement, honesty and responsibility.

In this respect – and in accentuated contrasts to a lifestyle of serial-to-parallel “loving many” quantitatively – I would like to invite by oligoamorous means to the opportunities of quality-conscious and sustainable community-building.

Oligoamory puts the love-based “mutual we” at the very heart of things. Thereby the concept wants to give the chance to all participants to experience themselves and the others both as free as well as united. At the same time, the “mutual we” facilitates for everybody the experience of contributing to and partaking in the relationship-network as a whole, which is collectively bigger than the sum of its parts and by that generates surplus value for all persons involved.


As well as the term, the symbol of Oligoamory likewise emerges from the equivalent template relating to Polyamory.

Both badges feature the red heart, which since medieval times stands as an attribute for romantic love, affection and passion.

Concerning Polyamory, that heart is being supplemented by a closed figure-eight-shaped blue ribbon, a so-called “Lemniscate”. The symbol is intended to represent the infinity and boundlessness of love.

Whereas the heart of Oligoamory is being entwined by a blue double spiral, similar to a so-called “Clothoid”. The pictograph of the double spiral, with its into one another winding coils, is employed by humans since the late Neolithic age to represent becoming and passing away as well as time. The dynamic shape of the double coil is thereby open – and likewise finite.

As the originator of the “Oligoamory symbol” the above-mentioned interpretation of the double spiral is crucial to me because the emphasis on the idiosyncrasies and potentials of the human element are essential to my view of Oligoamory.

Human beings like us are existing spatiotemporally in a both finite as well as transitory world. Our resources and our energies, our sensory perceptions, our time, and therefore also our relationships and even our lifespan is limited and finite.

Exactly this finiteness – and the dawn of the 21st century makes it quite obvious in so many ways – immediately suggests a more attentive and sustainable husbandry regarding our available treasures of substantial as well as ideational nature.
Our awareness in respect of the ubiquitous finiteness has always evoked in human groups the fascinating aptitude of distribution, shared use, and optimisation of the available.
In the course of this, it becomes globally as well as in the smallest companionship apparent that we have always been particularly successful, if we thereby moved from mere distributional justice towards individual needs-based justice.

Oligoamory wants to invite to a mindful adoption of these vital values into ethical and loving multiple relationships.

Creative Commons License

The Oligoamory-Heart by Julius Otto Roeber is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.


This is the bLog of the expedition that researches and describes the remote island of “Oligoamory”. Who or what ever attains to these pages is invited to share in the considerations and insights this venture is going to unearth.

Entry 71

Concerning Polyamory In this Entry I would like to talk once again about Polyamory – which is, after all, in a way the godmother of my “Oligo”-amory”.Why does Polyamory exist and why do we want to be polyamorous? When I read through the flurry in the media on- and offline, as well while browsing through …

Entry 70

Undetected leitmotif*… “Polyamory isn’t for me. If I want to disappoint two people at the same time, I’ll visit my parents.”This sentence I read last month in a forum about different types of relationships – and I have probably never seen a more terrible confession regarding the attitude towards multiple relationships. Whereby “terrible” is of …

Entry 69

One for all – all for one!¹ As the author of a bLog, one is necessarily critical regarding one’s own texts. Again and again, I therefore regularly look again at entries written by me months – or meanwhile even years – later, and even in my eyes there are rather powerful but also sometimes less …

About me

Since the author was born in the year of the first oil crisis, he hails aboriginal – as most people currently still alive – from the old world of Monoamory (all right: The term “Di-amory” would be etymological accurate – as it describes a romantic relationship between only two people). Likewise it was there where he gathered basic relationship-experience.

Via sojourns in Tübingen, Metzingen, Löhne, Münster, Havixbeck, Fallersleben, Braunschweig, Meerdorf, Tosterglope, Barmstedt and Dassel he gradually approached the legendary mainland of “Open Relationships”. Once arrived there he initially tried to gain a foothold on the versatile archipelago of Polyamory.

Driven by sheer curiosity and some sophistry, he discovered during one of his expeditions the remote island of Oligoamory, which represents the centre of his research studies ever since.

The expedition leader characterises himself as highly sensitive (SPS) in accordance with the descriptions of the American scientist, clinical psychologist and Jungian psychotherapist Dr. phil. Elaine N. Aron.
He further identifies himself preponderantly as straight, cisgender and male.

In his heart he remains a romantic – and an idealist.