Books I loved Dating and Relationships Starting a Relationship

Use the “Relationship Bill of Rights” to have a Happy Marriage.

31 December 2023

The “Relationship Bill of Rights” sounds like something out of a legal drama on HBO. This story, however, begins with my friend Alexandra, who wanted a traditional happily-ever-after.

Alexandra had been dating Stephan, a globe-trotting entrepreneur who lived between Europe and the United States.

On paper, it seemed like a perfect match. A few months into their nascent relationship, other issues came to the surface.

“He wants me to be in an open relationship,” said Alexandra.

She was very upset.

“He even gave me this book, which explains open relationships.”

With that statement, Alexandra handed over a well-worn, thick copy of “More than Two.”

Though I’ve heard of and read books about the virtues of polyamory, I’d never seen a guide on HOW to do it.

Over the following weeks, I began thumbing through the book in the evenings after work.

My eyes, exhausted after days of staring at screens, should have glazed over the pages. Instead, the book was gripping.

The Relationship Bill of Rights enables Happy, Harmonious Relationships

Authors Franklin Veaux and Eve Rickert explain relationships, in easy, accommodating language. Their goal is to guide us through managing relationships with two or more people.

What results is a book that feels like a guide for all relationships. It remains one of the best books I’ve ever read on building better relationship skills.

In the book, they describe a “Relationship Bill of Rights”. This document defines each partner’s rights in any intimate relationship.

Couple discussing the Relationship Bill of Rights

A Guide to Intercultural Relationships

Most of my readers are dating men of different nationalities. Our students usually marry a partner from another culture and background. Using this list can help you set healthy boundaries from Day One. It can also form the foundation of an on-going conversation on emotional connection. This lets each partner feel safe and secure inside the relationship. It also gives you a common language to discuss any problems that may come up along the way.

This list is so simple, straightforward, and easy to understand. You can use it to discuss your wants and needs with any potential partner.

The Relationship Bill of Rights

by Eve Rickert & Franklin Veaux

You have the right, without shame, blame or guilt:

In all intimate relationships:

  • to be free from coercion, violence and intimidation. This includes violence such as destroying property, or hitting the wall near you. It also includes any other acts of violence not specifically directed at your person.

  • to choose the level of involvement and intimacy you want

  • to revoke consent to any form of intimacy at any time

  • to be told the truth

  • to say no to requests

  • to hold and express differing points of view

  • to feel all your emotions

  • to set boundaries concerning your privacy needs

  • to set clear limits on the obligations you will make

  • to seek balance between what you give to the relationship and what is given back to you

  • to know that your partner will work with you to resolve problems that arise

  • to choose whether you want a monogamous or polyamorous relationship

  • to grow and change

  • to make mistakes

  • to end a relationship


Perhaps the only downside is that this list is not on Page 1 of the book. It might have helped my friend Alexandra avoid heartbreak before it happened.

My favourite item is the right to “be told the truth”. It sounds so simple, and I love that it’s stated loud and clear on this list.

I’d love to hear – which of these items surprised you most? Have you used any of the above in a relationship so far?


Franklin has a far more detailed updated list of “Relationship Rights” on this website (scroll all the way down). Photo of Couple reading together via Rodnae Media.


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