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Why Are Group Sex And Threesomes On The Rise?

Is interest in multiple partners, whether for a one-night stand or for a poly relationship, really on the rise? According to surveys by Cosmopolitan and Psychology Today, yes. So what does that mean, and why is it happening? There are several signs which point to the cultural markers that lead to the threesome fantasy and swinging becoming more common.

Interest in Alternative Sexual Practices Is Increasing

We live in a world where Fifty Shades of Grey became the fastest-selling paperback of all time, selling over 125 million copies despite critical reception, and later becoming a mainstream movie. There had been kink-focused erotic works released before, such as The Story of O (1954) or 9½ Weeks (1986), but these came nowhere near the mainstream acceptance that E. L. James’ work did. To match the same cultural impact, you have to look to Deep Throat (1972), a pornographic film focused on oral sex.

Add to this the refreshing of sexual mores of late in the Western world. Gay marriage has been legalized, LGBTQ issues make the front page more often, and more people are comfortable being “out” about their fetishes, kinks, and gender identity or orientation than ever before. The Sexual Revolution of the 1960s might have only been the first wave. The 21st century so far has counted as a sort of post-revolution, where cultural attitudes toward sex, sexual identity, and relationships have gotten over nervously acknowledging sexual variations and moved on to being able to accept them with less judgment.

 

MMF or FFM?

For most straight hetero couples, the prospect of a threesome presents a challenge: What gender will the third partner be? Because every straight person looking for a threesome wants two members of the opposite gender to romp with, while their straight partner may be iffy on having somebody of the same gender along for the ride.

A 2018 study at Birmingham City University found that of people who fantasize about a threesome, most would consider it extra-hot if the two opposite-gender partners in that scenario also get into each other. Men with two women would like the gals to interact with each other also, and women with two men would also like to see the guys get busy with each other too. This presents a paradox for everybody but those with bi tendencies to start with: Two of you will have to be the same gender (at least as far as birth genders go) for this to happen.

Nevertheless, this points to another reason the threesome fantasy is so common: for many, the idea of watching their partner have a bi make-out is alluring. There’s a hetero market for gay and lesbian porn with exactly this dynamic driving it.

It’s A “Gateway Taboo”

The idea of multiple partners is one of the most mainstream possible fantasies out there. Unlike some alternative tastes, everybody can at least understand where a desire for a threesome is coming from.

For those with bi tendencies, of course, there’s the added bonus of being able to explore their tastes in a safe zone. Surveys by data-gatherers at Kinsey and Gallup peg the number of LGBTQ people at 3.8%. While there’s always going to be some fuzz in the data due to the stigma against non-hetero people the simple statistical data suggests that a significant percentage of the population is looking to explore their sexuality with a same-sex partner.

However, people who are a little more anchored to the idea of multiple partners tend to head for the lifestyle of polyamory, rather than just scratching the curious itch for a one-time adventure. It has been said that threesomes can be the gateway to swinging. Oftentimes, a couple will test the waters, so to speak, with a third in order to see if they are capable of opening their relationship up without creating emotional drama. Based on the results, they could decide that the life isn’t for them ef emotional attachments or jealousy get in the way. Conversely, it can be an illuminating experience that opens them up to many new possibilities. It just all depends on the couple.

Why is Interest in Group Sex Growing?

Chalk it up to 1970s-era liberation that first made the concept of large-scale group sex popular. It is still obtainable, but like most adventures in life, the actual event may not line up with the expectations. Many people seem to want this just to check it off their bucket list and have the bragging rights.

If you really want an orgy and nothing else will do, the closest and most available option is to head for a major city, join a local lifestyle group, and wait to get invited to a “play party,” or join an entourage to an adult social club (AKA sex club, swingers’ club). NASCA International is an organization devoted to listing swingers’ clubs around the world and registering them according to their adherence to Safe/Sane/Consensual standards. If you currently have a partner, be certain to communicate with them about what you want. Most US states have at least one swingers’ club.

Typical swingers’ clubs charge an entry fee, limit the participation of single males, and have an on-site hosted environment with some monitoring to ensure everybody plays fair. But if you keep your conduct in line with the standards, you too can find yourself in a huge cushioned room while couples, triads, and huddles get it on in every corner.

If you’re just after a threesome, many swingers’ publications, websites, and alternative lifestyle groups cater to this and many other fantasies. Just be advised that few poly households are interested in short-term swings, so arranging a threesome for just one time may prove the most difficult feat out of all these.

Inez Beltran

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