It seems like talking about open relationships, threesomes and polyamory is all over the news over the past year, from Jade-Martina Lynch explaining polyamory to other Big Brother contestants, to Psychology Today reporting an increase of acceptance of consensual nonmonogamy among younger adults, to VICE publishing a piece about growing up in a poly family. Franklin Veaux has made a popular infographic of the various ways people may engage in some sort of open relationship that keeps popping up on my Facebook wall. SHOWTIME had a TV show, called "Polyamory: Married and Dating". Even Cosmopolitan got in on the trend (and poked fun at its reputation for bad sex tips) by making a satirical list of threesome positions.
But how to go about having that threesome of your fantasies? I was pleasantly surprised when I came across advice columnist Dr. Nerdlove's suggestion in a piece about threesomes- hire someone. "If you're interested in as uncomplicated a threesome as you can find, an escort is likely your best bet," he says. "Regardless of how you may feel morally about sex work, an escort isn't going to be a threat to the relationship - hell, they won't be interested in being a threat - and has a vested interest in your satisfaction (they will always appreciate cultivating repeat customers) and mutual safety (for obvious reasons)." But why should a couple choose to try nonmonogamous sexytimes by hiring a male escort?
My boyfriend and I have toyed with the idea of hiring a male escort for a threesome before. Our reasoning comes from having participated in threesomes in professional capacities (we're both porn performers) as well as privately. The idea of having a third who knows what they're doing and isn't invested in a capital R Relationship is a plus for us. I mean, you don't know about the working quality of a toaster you get on Craigslist, never mind a sex partner. And when you want something done right, why not hire a pro?
Curious about the experiences of the OTHER side of the equation, I spoke to some male escorts from Rentboy.com (where we were browsing for our third) to find out why couples come to them, and how to have a good time.
First off, a couple should have a good talk about why they want to hire a male escort. "Generally speaking, male-female couples have one party who's really hot on the idea of hiring a male escort, and the other person is along for the ride," said Legendary Dave, considered one of the top 50 male escorts in the US. "They might be ok with it, but it's not their Thing." He added, "the best way to have a threesome is to have everyone equally excited for it- I check in with both members of the couple to make sure everyone's comfortable." "Boy next door" Caleb agreed that communication between the couple was key to a positive experience, saying "A good thing to ask is what you (as a couple) want out of our time together- be specific, don't be nervous for what you may think of as weird or bizarre requests. The worst that can happen is I say, no, I don't do that."
When you book an escort, the comfort of the couple is the priority of the provider, says "one of a kind" escort Viktor, and that can take off some pressure as well. "I'm really not going to take anything personally. It's their time, their space, and their decisions. It's nice for a couple to be able to take a pause and know they won't have to navigate my feelings." Even though it can be a little intimidating to ask for what you want, said Caleb, it's important for your enjoyment of the experience. "Don't let nerves prevent you from getting the most out of our appointment... by being up front I can be confident in fulfilling all your desires."
So what's the advantage of hiring your third rather than picking them up on OKCupid or Craigslist Casual Encounters? Winner of "Best Top" in the 2015 Hookies escort awards, Austin believes that the parameters of seeing a sex worker offer a higher sense of control over the threesome. "The experience has a contract, and with that comes many securities. I won't fall in love. I won't interfere with their relationship." Dave agrees, and adds that a professional is more likely to be safe... and have much needed experience. "If you find a good escort, they're going to be dependable, they'll be comfortable in their skin, they're going to have sex skills, and they're likely to be health-tested regularly."
Dave also had some great advice on threesomes generally. "To have a successful threesome, whether professional or personal, you always have to give the other two people equal attention. If the third person goes away for a minute and then comes back, reach out to them and bring that person back into your interaction." I know from personal experience, a threesome can be ruined if you feel like you're just there to witness your partner and the other person getting it on... a pro can be trusted to not demonstrate favoritism, which is key.
Practicalities aside, I was kind of curious if there were any particularly juicy stories these men had about couples coming to see them. Austin had a story about an older straight couple he had seen. "When it was over and I was cleaning up, I walked out to find her on the phone saying "I love you too" as she hung up. She turned to me and said "Sorry. Our seven year old wanted to say good night". I had to wrap my head around that I just had sex with someone's parents!" Viktor told me about a couple he had been seeing regularly for a while: "For the first night of their honeymoon they wanted me to jump out of a giant cake. It was totally ridiculous. We had a wonderful time and to see them fall so deeply in love with each other has been incredible."