Sex 101: How To Navigate A Threesome

Introducing a third party into your sex life can be an eye-opening experience, but is it wise to take it from fantasy to reality? Paula Lyne gets the suss on threesomes.

The classic threesome scenario is a familiar one, at least if you ask a straight man: two women, one guy, lots of oral sex, maybe some toys. Yet in truth, a threesome can take many forms, and the pleasure lies in finding which one works for you.

“The first time I had a threesome, it all happened very organically at a party,” says Sinead*, 28, a doctor from Dublin. “It was myself and two guys, and it was great fun, more fun that I had ever expected. I always had it in the back of my head that it was something I wanted to try again, but it just never really came up.”

Eventually, after spotting a male-female couple on Tinder looking for a woman to hook up with during their holiday in Dublin, Sinead decided to take the leap. “I matched with them and was immediately terrified. Finally I told myself to cop on and message them. I got talking to the girl, and she was so chatty and friendly that it put me immediately at ease.”

Sinead arranged to meet the couple at a bar in Dublin, before heading back to their hotel. “It was definitely a funny interaction to begin with, as I suppose any date that’s sex-inevitable is going to be,” she recalls. “It was like a waiting game, but it was very important to me to have that initial meeting somewhere neutral and safe.”

In the end, Sinead’s sexual experience was a positive one. “The couple weren’t the type of people I’d necessarily be attracted to if we had met organically, but because the physicality was so good, it didn’t matter that much. I was lucky that they were both very experienced and enjoyed teaching me different moves, and they definitely took pleasure in making me the centre of attention.” As for her orgasm count? “Off the charts,” says Sinead.

For a single person, the main concern when exploring the idea of a threesome is that you yourself feel safe and comfortable at all times. If you’re in a couple though, the waters are a little murkier. “Respect is key,” says sex therapist Teresa Bergin of broaching the topic of a threesome with a partner.

Not every person out there would be comfortable with the introduction of a third person and it’s something that could potentially provoke a lot of anxiety.

“Any time either party wishes to introduce something different to a sexual relationship, there needs to be clear communication about what they want and why. Not every person out there would be comfortable with the introduction of a third person and it’s something that could potentially provoke a lot of anxiety,” she explains.

Mia*, 32, from London, is in her second long-term open relationship, and often goes on solo dates with other men and women, as well as having threesomes with her partner. “We definitely have ground rules in terms of what we’re willing and not willing to do, but it helps that we have both been part of an open couple before,” she says of her relationship dynamic.

If anything, Mia says that bringing a third person into the equation has only served to strengthen the bond between herself and her boyfriend. “The threesomes we’ve had are always liberating and exciting, and it makes our own time together all the more intimate. When it’s just the two of us, we’re fully engaged and we know we’re both where we want to be.”

A healthy sex life evolves and changes as time goes on, and what you find desirable now might be completely different in five years time, as Mia points out. “In my mind, it’s always worth trying new things,” she says. “Worst case scenario, you find out you don’t like it.”

However, sex in a coupledom is far more about intimacy than physicality, and many couples fear jealousy and desire towards other people ruining their relationship – perhaps wisely. We’re not so highly evolved that sexual envy doesn’t come in to play, and many women (and men) would balk at the thoughts of another person in their bed pleasuring their partner. However, the fantasy can still be alluring and there are ways around it without actually inviting another human over – from porn to dirty talk to role playing, you can get off on threesomes without actually having a third person in the room. Whatever happens, just be wary of your other half’s feelings – and it might be wise to keep in mind the potential dynamics of any couple you’re considering guest starring with too.

This article first appeared in STELLAR’s April issue. Our August issue is on shelves now! 

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