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Can you romantically love more than one person?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/13/2015 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 539 times Debate No: 70000
Debate Rounds (4)
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1.Romantic means thinking about love, and doing and saying you love someone.
2.Love means to have a strong or constant affection for a person
3.Love also means the strong affection felt by people who have a romantic relationship.
4.Love is an emotion that is subjective, that has no definitive reason or logic.
5.Love cannot feel or see the difference between one and multiple romantic lovers.
6.From most religious scripts, the word "agape" appears in order to emphasize on a selfless, undying love for God.
7.If we as a species were to abide by agape than there would be no room to love anyone other than God. Nevermind, more than that.
8.Someone who takes religion very seriously, who is also married, or in romantic love is defying the idea that that one can only love one person.
9.Some religions and belief systems accept and praise a man who is in love with multiple partners.
10.The human brain is far to complex to only be able to love one another. In research interviews in an experiment at the University of Nevada subjects who were in multiple romantic relationships were very open about how much happier them and their multiple partners were.
11.Concurrent romantic love can be achieved with the right balance between what"s being taken away from each.
12.Example for number 11 is that in these interviews one participant gave examples to support his belief that concurrent romantic relationships were healthy, and each partner though occasionally "jealous" were ultimately happier.
13.There are instances where one partner is better at cooking, while the other is better at fixing cars one finds a real balance in their life.
14.If one has a desire to seek out specific urges, that their partner cannot achieve, one must seek that out, with their partners blessing.
15.From these premises concludes that a person could romantically love more than one person.

Non-Controversial Premises:
Premises 1,2,3 and 6 are definitions of love, romantic, and agape.

Controversial Premises:
4 and 5. Love is not something that alone could make decisions. Therefore love itself has no limit, especially if the need for it is being satisfied. Satisfaction is not to say
7 and 8. A person who is "devoted" to their religion and it"s practices, but is married and claim to be in "love" could conceptually love multiple partners, as they have already exceeded the "space" to love more
9. Polygamy is accepted in Islam, Mormon polygamists, Christian polygamists,
10. Psychologically, the human brain can"t be held to one person.
11-14. Supporting instances for premise 10.
15. Conclusion


Con 1

1) I would have to disagree with your interpretation of the world romantic due to the fact that in the definition of the word it states “involving love between two people “. And to leave those key words out would be doing a injustice to the word.

2) I agree with the premises that love must have a strong and constant affection for a person.

3) I don’t necessarily agree that just because you have a romantic relationship with someone that doesn’t mean you’re in love. I agree you feel the strong affection but those feelings many times are confused with true love.

4) Being in a relationship with one person is already so time consuming. If you package that with work school and everyday life, there’s not enough hours in a day to possibly build a healthy loving relationship with multiple partners.

5) The long-term effects that this can have on a child can be catastrophic in their upbringing.

6) I agree with this premises

7) You’re correct when you say “if we as a species were to abide by a agape” but being that we all don’t abide by that this premises is there for invalid.

8) Whatever deities one chooses to follow in his or her religion is not look at in a romantic eye but more in a spiritual way. So their love for a partner and their love for their god are two different loves all together. So in no way do I believe that this will be defying the idea that you can only love one person.

9) According to tons of new study’s coming out it takes 12 areas of the brain to be clicking at the same time for the state of euphoria in the brain that is connected with love to occur.

10) Most cultures and religions look at polygamy as immoral.

Debate Round No. 1


1. In order to mover forward I will add "two people" to this definition. In any case, the definition does not state, "exclusively" two people. One could love people in different places and when they are with each, they can be romantic.
3. This is a definition pulled from the dictionary. I"m not exactly sure what you are trying to persuade.
4. This statement is very vague and subjective. Your statement is to assume that romantic love with multiple people can be accomplished very quickly. Over time, one can devote time each thing they want. School, work, and love are all subjective, when thinking of how much "goes in".
5. What premises could prove the "catastrophic" long-term effects on the up-bringing of children. From this statement, wouldn"t it make sense then to argue that same-sex parents could have catastrophic effects on their children.
7. Spiritually, we do not all abide by "agape", but mentally would you agree that the brain has "room".
8. Considering your premise 8, I can agree the focus on spirituality can be removed from this debate, unless other premises arise where it is appropriate.
9. This state of euphoria is connected to love, but is not exclusive to a specific type of love, as other factors play roles, conditional, unconditional, and platonic for instance are all tpes of love that effect different parts of the brain.
10. Ok. This statement however, doesn"t clarify why someone would be incapable of romantically loving more than one person


Con 2

1) Even though it doesn’t state exclusively two people love isn’t something that is easily reached with one person so how can you say truthfully that you can have the same strong love with multiple people at the same time I don’t believe you can love 2,3,4 people at once and say the love is the same with all of them. And I’m confused by what you meant when you said “one could love people in different places”.


3) I’m trying to say that Just because you and a person are romantically involved doesn’t mean your in love it means you made a romantic connection and love is far more than just a romance.

4) I agree that it is subjective in some ways but that doesn’t make it any less true. Realistically the average person has to many things going on in day-to-day life to really build a healthy relationship with multiple partners. Do you happen to know any one in this type of relationship? Probably not because its not realistic.

5) I’m finding a hard time seeing how you correlated same sex parents to what I said could you please elaborate.

6) I agree that the brain has the room to try and love multiple people but I strongly question how successful the attempt would be.

7) I agree with your premise for 9 that love does affect different parts of the brain.

8) One of the most common religions and examples where polygamy is allowed is in the Muslim community. But the main rule when it comes to having multiple wives is that you must treat them all the same. The love you have for one is the same you must have for all. Out of all the marriages about 4% of them practice polygamy 4% out of 100. Why is that number so low you may ask? Maybe because people saw over time that it really isn’t possible to have that same love with multiple partners.

Debate Round No. 2


1. With love people in different places, I mean someone who is nomadic. Whether it be homeless, or white collar traveling for work. Because you "believe" it"s not possible, does not mean that it is impossible.
3. Understood. I can appreciate that opinion. I even agree slightly with that. However in the case of romantic love shared between multiple partners I simply believe to to be possible.
4. No. I do not know anyone personally who achieves such a relationship, but much like premise four since round one. This one is subjective. To be "realistic" with time is vague, as some people sleep very little, and could spend more time with more people.
5. In this, I"m assuming that the catastrophe of multiple partner parents is stigmatizing from a social level. This could be bias towards "typical" parenting situations. Since "typical", should be a Father and a Mother, isn"t it just as easy to say same sex, and multiple are bot non-typical? Our society is far more accepting of same sex parents, why wouldn"t multiple follow?
6. With that being said we can move on from this premise.
7. This could also relate to love in many locations. Also parts of the very expansive brain. Someone who is a "higher level thinker" may not be fulfilled by a relationship that only sparks interest in the right or left side of the brain, and in turn may need more Romantic love from someone who could invigorate the left.
8.. Maybe you are right with this premise, but we mustn"t use the word "maybe". That 4% may be so small because they feel ostricized perhaps? And where not comfortable taking part in the study.


1) Can you honestly say that you are able to love 2,3,4 people at once with the same affection? Nothing is impossible but if you do think you can then more than likely you’re part of the outlier.


3) I also agree that romantic love sheared between multiple partners is fully possible as you said, but that sounds more like a good time rather than a health loving relationship.

4) I don’t necessarily see how me being realistic is me being vague. All I’m saying is it less than likely that with every thing going on in this fast pace world we would really have the time to build what is needed to have a flourishing relationship with multiple partners. You said it your self that you didn’t “know anyone personally who achieves such a relationship” and I’m sure you meet a good amount of people throughout your life. Even if you asked any of them I’m more than certain they would have the same answer as you did it just isn’t realistic.

5) I agree with this point to some extent I still don’t think our society is that accepting of same sex parents yet, you may be under estimating just how ignorant some people really are. So to say that multiple parents would soon follow is taking a big leap.


7) I could see this being the case for “higher level thinkers” but then again not everyone is in that percentile or even close.

8) You say we shouldn’t use the word “maybe” and then you turn around and almost use the same word. Why would they feel ostracized when this isn’t taboo in their culture? This is just a stat showing how this type of relationship is not part of the mode.

Debate Round No. 3


1. Romantic Love can be achieved amongst many partners as it is strong and affectionate feeling for another person. Not exclusively to one other partner, however.
2. Love is subjective, and not be defined or measured spiritually, psychologically, or mentally. With that being said, how could someone say it was "impossible to love more than one partner"?
3. Romance is also subjective. What someone sees as romantic another may not.
4. In this case realistic is subjective. Reality is what each individual sees, and how they interpret the world. For some, yes it may be difficult to hold many relationships at once. Either, over time or at a different time all-together this capacity for love could be achieved.
5. My opponent and I agree to an extent on this premise. People"s ignorance does not hold weight in this topic because at the same time, someone could come along and say no person is ignorant. Therefore, countering your argument.
6. We can agree that the brain is a extremely powerful. The brain is powerful enough to do anything, including romantically love multiple partners.
7. It is true that most people are not "higher level thinkers", but it is true that it "could be the case" in such a situation, there is someone who could achieve this at all.
8. The word "maybe was used in a hypothetical and ironic way. This type of relationship, as you stated is not "part of the mode." However, it exists, and in some cases it has been successful for all parties involved. Not frequently occurring is ok. Neither do many other demographics, or cultural groups when there is any scrutiny laid upon them.

My opponent and I have agreed and disagreed on many premises. Despite some very good points brought up by my partner, I still stand by my side of this debate, in believing that it is possible to have multiple romantic lovers at the same time. In history, and in many societies throughout time, polygamous societies have existed and been successful. Although we are raised and socially nudged in the direction of believing that monogamy is best, I still do not see that the human brain must only be tied into one romantic relationship.


1) I couldn’t agree with this point because I have strong and affectionate feelings for more than one person with out any romance involved.

2) I agree with this premise love is somewhat subjective, and nothing is impossible but its very unlikely that you can reach a state of true love with multiple people.

3) I agree with this but romance and love need to be put into separate categories because they are to many times confused as one.

4) I stressed being realistic because a lot of people say all the time that they can do certain things and in the back of your mind you wonder can they really? Saying you can do something and actually being able to do it are two different things. Some things may be possible but on the other hand not so easy to accomplished.

5) I agree with this premise

6) The brain is extremely powerful and we can definitely agree on that but love is also a powerful emotion and is not easily reached so that’s where we part ways.

7) I agree with this premise

8) These types of relationships do exist but it’s also many factors that play into them working or not. Were on the outside looking in so we can’t say for sure if these relationships are healthy loving ones.

In this case my opponent and I would just have to agree to disagree seeing as I cant and wont back down from my stance. Some great points were brought up on both sides but I just don’t believe that it’s possible to love more than one person at a time. History has showed that even though many attempt to do it, it just doesn’t work out. The biggest example of this would in the Muslim community and seeing the modern day stats of just how unsuccessful these types of relationships are. Love is a very complicated emotion that many times can be confused with others and until we reach that state of bliss can we then decide if it can be sheared with another
Debate Round No. 4
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