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Kink / LGBTQIA+

I’ve Had Over 30 Threesomes, Lemme Tell You My Secrets

Written by Lina Dune.

Art by @marlenejuliane

I used to hate the idea of threesomes but now I’ve had more than 30 — here’s how I make them work.

As a bi woman, threesomes have been part of my sexual awareness ever since I can remember. Whether it was the long-term straight male partner who campaigned for a threesome (he’d never had one) just as hard as he campaigned for anal sex (also had never done it) or the couple that admitted they were incessantly offering me cocaine at a party in an effort to grease the threesome wheels, I’ve been at the center of a threesome bull’s-eye with anyone I’ve ever been honest with about my sexuality. As a result, I have historically been aggressively gun-shy about jumping into the act. Sex for me has always been deeply intimate — the best way of connecting with one other person. I’m big into eye contact. So to me, a threesome seemed like the ultimate recipe for disappointment and hurt feelings. What if I did it with a committed partner, and they enjoyed sex with the new person more than with me? What if I did it with a couple and it just amplified my own loneliness? The questions were too great and too many, so I filed the whole concept away and dubbed myself more of a one-on-one girl. 

To me, a threesome seemed like the ultimate recipe for disappointment and hurt feelings.

That is, until I met my current partner and we entered into a 24/7 Dom/sub dynamic. Our whole relationship is predicated on communication, and I’ve given myself over to my Dom’s direction and (reasonable, negotiated) expansion of my limits. When He first brought up threesomes, my response was “oh, no, no, no — I don’t do that.” Unfortunately, that had been my response when he first brought up blindfolding, butt plugs, and caging/confinement, and I ended up loving all of those. So we sat with it. For a couple months. We talked about how He wanted to support my bi identity and allow me to experiment in a way that felt controlled and comfortable. And I interrogated Him within an inch of His life to make sure He wasn’t just objectifying my queerness, but instead seeing me as a whole person of which queerness was only one part. And so we finally dipped our toes into the threesome world. And then we did it again. And again. Until we locked down a system so tight that I’ve gone from nervously going over every detail with my Dom before a threesome begins to occasionally forgetting we have a threesome scheduled on a given night until I get home from work and remember “oh, that’s happening?” 

Going into our first, second, and third threesomes, I was deeply worried the experience would estrange me from my partner. . . . [But] threesomes have strengthened our relationship in ways I could never have imagined.

Some couples (considerably more in the BDSM community from what I understand) deploy the “play together” method of openness, which for me — the victim of a past open relationship gone terribly, terribly wrong — seemed like the only option where we could get fresh blood in the mix without setting off my myriad cheating triggers “Indiana Jones and the Temple Of Doom” style. Going into our first, second, and third threesomes, I was deeply worried the experience would estrange me from my partner. Now, after our 31st (yes, I just counted, and holy shit), I know that threesomes have strengthened our relationship in ways I could never have imagined. Watching my Dom respect my specific boundaries and limits while having sex with another girl right in front of me has become even more romantic than a box of chocolates. So how do you get to this point with your partner? Well, everyone is different, but the below parameters may help you ease into the playing together deep end…. 

Engage in Exploratory Dirty Talk

The first place you and your partner should ever have a threesome is in your imaginations. I know this sounds corny, but if you can’t talk about the ins and outs of what might happen, you also can’t be trusted to thoughtfully navigate this potentially emotionally complex situation. The easiest way to start playing with the idea would be to start describing some of your desires to your partner during one-on-one sex and vice versa. If your partner starts describing performing oral sex on a play partner and this freaks you out, you can let them know that might be a limit for you. But if they start talking about penetrating you from behind while you go down on a third and you start cumming out of your eyeballs — this might be a good place to start.

After you’ve gotten a feel for what you and your partner fantasize about, you can start to take these conversations out on dry land. When you’re out for dinner, taking a drive, or going on a hike, you can start to map out what you’d feel comfortable with. Having these conversations as though you’ve got plenty of time and aren’t hurtling towards a destination is key in making sure both partners know that your bond comes first, and the threesome is just icing on the cake.

Go Find Your Play Partners

Once you’re ready to play with the potential of a real third, it’s time to take it to the apps. Create a profile for one or both of you, be really clear about what you’re looking for in your bio, and anoint one partner to manage communication with the outside. For us, it’s my Dom, because that’s what made us most comfortable, but I see all communication between Him and our play partners. When you do match with someone who’s interested, don’t cut right to the sex. Be conversational and ask them about themselves. Then, when it’s time to set up a date, be clear about what’s happening next. Say you’re going to meet up in a public place to talk about what’s on the table with a friendly, no-expectations drink. 

We’ve decided the system that works best for us is only to play with partners who are new to both of us so that our D/s dynamic can remain as we have defined it when we bring in a third. Some people may feel more comfortable playing with people they know. For me, that has the potential to get too murky and jealousy-provoking, but if you’re not in a big city and options are limited, it can be a viable route as long as you and your partner are comfortable.

Set up a System

Once you know what you want, and who you want it with, it’s time to define how you’re going to go about it. Speaking from personal experience, my Dom and I set up our system with my triggers in mind. I wasn’t sure what was going to happen when I watched Him have penetrative sex with a new play partner. Would I completely freak out and run from the room screaming? Be politely intrigued? Fall out of love with him entirely and have to start life from scratch? With these stakes on the line, we developed a system of graduated steps that would ease me into the process, which we call the 1A, 1B, and 2 (etc.):

1A: The 1A is the first date with a new play partner. After some discussion has occurred on whatever dating app my Dom found them on (we’ve exclusively had success with Tinder and Feeld) and we’ve defined expectations, we meet the person at a bar. Over a drink, we get to know her, tell her about ourselves and our relationship, and then finally describe exactly what we’re looking for, talk about hard and soft limits, and define what sex acts are on the table for that night and beyond. If we all jive, we move on to the 1B.

1B: This is when we go back to the apartment and get naked. It’s so named because occasionally the 1A & B will occur on the same night, thus they’re two parts of one evening. The 1B is a time when we can all get to know each other, and the new sub can see how our dynamic works without being specifically involved in penetrative sex. 

2 (and beyond): By the second time we see a partner, everything is on the table, including penetration*. Every play session begins with some casual conversation and revisiting everyone’s limits and safe words, and ends with aftercare and a check-in.

We find that being really clear with ourselves and our partners about what is on the table each time we see them minimizes confusion and jealousy. We all know what’s going to happen to some degree — and yet it’s still fun! Our system is tailor-made to our relationships and concerns about new partners, and yours should be equally fitted to what intimidates and excites you about playing with a third. Maybe you want to always be touching your partner during the play session (collar and leash play can be great for maintaining connection). Maybe you have boundaries about who can kiss whom. Your system will come together with time and patience to serve your needs.

*A note on penetration: If you want to be entirely certain you are not transmitting STIs during play, any penis or toy will need a new condom each time they switch partners. What we do instead is show test results and share birth control information before playing without condoms. For many people this is a soft limit, so we ease into it on a case-by-case basis. To each their own.

Be Ready for Your Limits to Change

You can dirty talk and hypothesize all you want, but you won’t really know how you’re going to react to a threesome until you’re in one. And your attitudes may change. For instance, you may think all you want in the world is to watch your partner kiss your third while he fucks you. But in practice, that may make you feel left out. Alternatively, speaking from experience, I thought my worst nightmare would be to be left across the room while my Dom basically carried out a one-on-one scene with a third, totally ignoring me. What I found to be the case, however, is that I absolutely love being cucked and can’t get enough of Him deliberately ignoring me or even using degrading language towards me while playing with another sub across the room. Romantic gestures live on a spectrum I guess. The point is, you and your partner should plan on being flexible about each other’s changing limits and interests. 

End it Responsibily

A very wise man by the name of Dan Savage once said something along the lines of “there’s such a thing as a successful short-term relationship.” People are often so uncomfortable with being disliked that rather than be clear and considerate, they allow their short-term relationships to dissolve into ghosting. I’m a proponent of a clear and communicated end point, especially with casual play partners. Usually, we tell people we’d like to see them on an ongoing but probably infrequent basis and most of the time they self-select out due to scheduling, seriously dating other people or, once, contracting an STI from another partner after we had mutually agreed on using protection with other people. But if the situation arises where we know we don’t want to see someone again, we’ll find a way to gently tell them. That’s just being a good neighbor. 

Lina Dune is a bi 24/7 sub, writer, and witch living in Los Angeles. LD is a pen name derived from two Anais Nin Stories — “Lina” and “Woman On The Dune.” You can find more of Lina’s work and ask her questions at askasub.com and on Instagram @askasub.

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