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TEAM ZOELLA OCTOBER 20, 2021

Everything You Should Consider Before Having a Threesome

If you’re considering taking things up a notch, whether it be in an existing relationship or as a singleton seeking something fun and flirty, then threesomes or group sex might be just the ticket to the raunchy rendezvous of your dreams.

Feeling spicy this autumn and not just in the pumpkin coffee sense? You’re not alone. Although studies suggest our libidos are naturally higher in the summer months, there’s something about long nights at home and getting cosy (read: frisky) after a rainy afternoon of Netflix and chill that really gets the pulse racing. If you’re considering taking things up a notch, whether it be in an existing relationship or as a singleton seeking something fun and flirty, then threesomes or group sex might be just the ticket to the raunchy rendezvous of your dreams. Although threesomes are all fun and games in the movies, there are some important things to consider before jumping feet (or genitals) first into polyamorous intimacy. 

How do you know if a threesome is for you?

According to one study, threesomes are the most common sexual fantasy, with 95% of men and 87% of women surveyed saying they fantasise about sex with multiple partners, but that doesn’t mean they’re for everyone. 

If you’re in the position of the ‘unicorn’ (referring to someone who joins an existing couple as a third partner sexually or emotionally intimately), it’s important to ask yourself what exactly you’re seeking before going ahead. Are you looking for some no-strings-attached fun or the opportunity to connect with others on a longer-term basis? Are you comfortable and confident in yourself and in a stable position to try something that might trigger new (or old) emotions? Would you be putting yourself in a vulnerable position with unknown outcomes? It’s important to know yourself well enough to ensure you will definitely be confident to speak your mind, vocalise your needs, wants and own desires and communicate how the experience is for you both before, during and after. Joining a couple that already knows each other intimately and can communicate more seamlessly might be intimidating, so it’s important to consider how you would feel as the newbie in this dynamic. 

Despite this, as a third joining a couple, there’s so much fun to be had in exploring your sexuality and learning more about what makes you feel good, whether you’re in-between monogamous partners or moving towards a more polyamorous attitude to sex and relationships. 

Bringing a third into your relationship has the potential to change the dynamic of your sex life and feelings for good. Are you ready for that?

Sex can be casual and something that simply satisfies the desires of those involved, but naturally when intimacy is involved, feelings can get complicated too. It’s important to consider the potential long term impact of a threesome if you’re in a committed relationship and what this could mean past the night in question. It’s worth looking a bit deeper and asking yourselves why a threesome is appealing at this point in your relationship? If it’s sparked by feelings of monotony or a desire to spice things up, there are plenty of ways to inject some va va voom into your love life without the risk that comes from adding another person into the mix, which certainly may be worth exploring first. 

More often than not, fantasy is more exciting than reality, so it might be useful to delve a little deeper and uncover what it is about a threesome that appeals to you and the desires you want it to fulfil. Expectation vs reality has never been more apt.

Making sure both partners feel seen and heard is imperative and discussing the ‘rules’ of your threesome beforehand is paramount. Some couples prefer not to kiss or cuddle with their third afterwards, whereas others may be more of the ‘anything goes’ thought. Most importantly, cross every possible (metaphorical) bridge beforehand in preparing for how each other may feel, and you’re well on your way to threesome fun, fun, fun.  

If you’re a jealous person, consider that you might feel left out at times…

Jealousy is without a doubt something to consider going into a threesome, more so for those in relationships adding in a third, as even the most #zen and non-jealous people may find themselves triggered in this scenario. In the same way that seeing your S/O lust over Margot Robbie in The Wolf of Wall Street activates a defensive and comparative mechanism in us, seeing them with someone else IRL is no doubt even more intense. Consider whether these new emotions are ones you’re capable of dealing with and weigh up the impact on your mental health for the benefit of this new experience. Whilst threesomes might become an exciting way for you to express yourself sexually, it’s not something to jump into at the click of a finger. 

We spoke to sex educator, digital creator and the genius behind sex-positive and educational Instagram and website @cliterallythebest to delve a little deeper into the most frequently asked threesome Qs you’ve always had on your lips. Consider Evie your sexual pleasure fairy godmother:

There’s some basic lingo to know before engaging in a threesome, for example, FFM = Two women, one man, MMF = Two men, one woman, T = Transgender. Although some may instantly know the dynamic they want from their threesome experience, how can those that are not sure come to a decision?

Any group of three can have a threesome rather than just those listed, no matter your sexuality or how you identify they are all valid.

Evie Plumb

When it comes to deciding on who you want your threesome with, it all depends on who turns you on and what you fantasise about.  If you are in a couple looking for a third, you both need to decide on what kind of threesome you want to experience and that neither one of you is pressuring the other.

Whether you’re a couple seeking a ‘unicorn’ or someone on their own looking for others, I recommend making a good old pros and cons list. This can help you/you and your partner see a clearer picture of what you might enjoy best. Another great tip is to watch porn (if it’s something that gets you off), preferably ethical porn and see what types of threesomes turn you on or you can imagine participating in – it’s also a great way to ease you into the idea! 

What are the benefits of a threesome and how might it help people explore their sexuality and sexual pleasure? 

There are many different reasons people have threesomes and the benefits can be individual to each person. It can simply be an exciting new way of experiencing pleasure, a way for someone in a relationship to explore their sexuality/fantasies or even a tester for becoming polyamorous. 

What’s the best way to approach your partner if you’re looking to introduce a third into your relationship? 

If you’re worried about bringing it up straight, maybe bring up someone you know or a celeb couple that you’ve heard are having threesomesEvie Plumb

If you’re worried about bringing it up straight, maybe bring up someone you know or a celeb couple that you’ve heard are having threesomes, ask if they have ever had one and if it would be something they would be into. If they hit you with a no, respect this. I’ve seen quite a few articles with titles similar to ‘How to get your partner to have a threesome’ or ‘How to persuade your girlfriend to have a threesome’ – there is no persuading or getting your partner to have a threesome, this is <span style=”text-decoration: underline;”><strong><a href=”https://www.cliterallythebest.com/pages/consent-consent-consent” target=”_blank” rel=”noreferrer noopener”>coercion.</a></strong></span>

If your partner does say yes, it’s important to discuss why you both want to have this threesome and whether this will be a one-off or a segue into a potential open relationship. It’s also essential to communicate any thoughts or fears from the beginning, like jealousy (because you will feel it and it’s totally normal) so you can work out how you will both navigate these feelings.

How can you ensure that everyone feels equally involved in the threesome so that it’s equally pleasurable for all? 

Learn what each person enjoys before. Find out what turns them on and voice what gets you going too. As well as this, don’t feel like you have to jump in straight away. Take it slow, ease it in, take breaks if you need to. There’s no wrong way to have sex and this applies no matter how many people are involved – do what works for you.

Another important thing to make sure everyone feels involved and gets the most out of the experience is aftercare. Ensure everyone is hydrated, replenished and content, plan an activity for after, don’t just get the third party to leave once it’s done. This could be post-sex pudding or grabbing some breakfast in the morning – make sure to check in with everyone and chat about what went well etc.

What is a safe word and how can people use it when they feel uncomfortable? 

A safeword is simply a random word that you pick that can be used when you or others want the activity to stop. Safewords originally came from BDSM but should be used in any sexual activity. 

People recommend not to use the word ‘stop’ or any word that could be used during sex normally as this can be confusing when people use these playfully. Agree on a random word like ‘Banana’ that every party can use when they feel uncomfortable. 

What sort of things should definitely be discussed with each partner before engaging in a threesome? 

Don’t forget to always discuss STI statuses and what kind of protection you will be using.Evie Plumb

Communication is key with most things in life but especially during sexual activities. Make sure you discuss beforehand what you are comfortable/not comfortable with, why you want to have this experience, what turns you on and how the threesome may make you feel – positive and negative. Don’t forget to always discuss STI statuses and what kind of protection you will be using.

Are there any basic threesome dos and don’ts that newbies may not be aware of? 

For those couples looking for a third, it’s important to remember that your potential ‘Unicorn’ is a human and not a sex toy and their needs should be given equal weight. Do get to know them as a person first, take them out to dinner – sex doesn’t have to be the first conversation. 

Don’t use a threesome as a relationship bandaid. Threesomes, especially with established relationships, take trust and security. If you are not feeling secure in your relationship I do not recommend adding a third. 

How do you ensure you’re using protection to keep everyone safe whilst also allowing partners to all engage sexually at once?

Protection can be hard to keep track of when you bring another person into the equation. It can be hard to remember who’s gone where especially when you’re in the moment. 

Make sure you discuss how you will stay protected with all parties before you get down to it. You can highlight who is on contraception, everyone’s STI status, what protection you’ll be using (condoms/dental dams will be easiest) and what activities are on/off-limits. This means that you’ll all be on the same page and the risk of sharing a little more than orgasms will be lower.

To stay safe I recommend changing condoms/dental dams when the mouth-to-genital/genital-to-genital pairings change.

How can you find compatible and like-minded people to share the experience with? 

I recommend apps like Feeld that are made specifically for this kind of dating.Evie Plumb

Luckily, the era of dating apps has made it much easier to find like-minded people. I recommend apps like Feeld that are made specifically for this kind of dating. You can set up a profile as a couple looking for a third or a single looking for couples and even input your likes and dislikes, making it super easy to find your people.

Another great way to meet people is at sex parties. People often get a bit freaked out when you mention these, but they are some of the safest spaces to explore and meet people in the same headspace as you! There is absolutely no pressure to participate which can make it a lot less daunting than planning a whole threesome.

Answers submitted by Evie Plumb, Evie is an ACET- qualified sex educator and the founder of Cliterally the Best, a sex-positive educational platform and Instagram. 

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