I was lying sprawled out on my bed, stained oversized hoodie on, stoned and elbow-deep in a bag of chips. My phone buzzed, and I remembered: “shit!” I told the couple that we could have cyber-sex tonight. I groaned and looked at the ceiling. Maybe I could just bail. After all, I’m the unicorn.
Unicorn, according to Urban Dictionary: “A common swinging term used in the community to refer to a single (person) interested in meeting other couples.”
I rolled off the bed with my bloated PMS belly and picked my favourite black lace lingerie. I washed my face, put on some light makeup, poured myself a glass of wine and lit some incense. I carried my sex toys to my well-lit bathroom and laid down on the fuzzy bath mat. I opened Instagram and saw greetings of adoration waiting for me. I responded, excited. I picked up my heavy Njoy wand (as they had requested) and put it in my mouth to make it wet, and then I began filming. I’ll leave the rest up to your imagination.
My cyber threesome was fun and hot and pandemic-safe. It was also a fun way to test the waters with a couple I was interested in potentially one day seeing in person. Though I trusted the couple, as last month’s Mother of Goo article articulated, trust isn’t always enough. I must be clear that I was aware these images of me could be shared (even if unintentionally), and I was prepared for whatever happened. To help ease any anxiety around this, I made sure to hide my face in the content I sent.
Cyber sex hits a bit different than in-person multiple-partner play. Less sweat, spit and vulnerability is involved. Threesomes are so multifaceted and are not simply defined. I’ve personally enjoyed the lack of commitment that comes with being the third or playing with friends. Bringing a third in as a couple can bring up difficult feelings of uncertainty and jealousy. But it can also be an opportunity to explore sexually with a partner and build new levels of trust.
Patriarchal colonial culture is keen on binaries and categorizing relationships. Sexual intimacy with platonic friends can be gorgeous and a hell of a lot of fun. Defining what works for you and the people you are in a relationship with is what is important, not trying to figure out what predefined social category you may or may not fit into.
As with all things sex, communication and crystal-clear boundaries are essential. In a small city like Winnipeg, finding a third you won’t run into awkwardly later or worry about can be difficult. I remember having a conversation with a past partner about hiring a sex worker for our first threesome. Once we thought of the idea, it seemed obvious! As sex work is still so stigmatized, many couples don’t consider this as a way to dip their toes into the murky waters of a third. But it’s actually possibly the best way to get started: with a professional.
Sex workers are commited to consent and clear boundaries. Obviously, please play safe and be discreet and respectful if you choose to seek out a sexual professional. Governments continue to morally condemn sex work, and they push to stigmatize it with their political agendas. There are also many apps available now that pals of mine have spoken highly of like Feeld. If you are clear in your bio, classic apps like Tinder and Bumble can also work.
It’s totally hot and fine to only want to enjoy one-on-one partnered sex, but whether cyber sex or in-person post-COVID exploration, three’s a crowd, and boy, do I miss crowds.
Madeline Rae is a pleasure activist, writer and artist living on Treaty 1. Rae holds a BFA Honours in performative sculpture and is graduating with her BA in psychology in June 2021, while pursuing a career in sex therapy. She is trained in client-centred sex education and harm reduction. She can be found at motherofgoo.com.
Published in Volume 75, Number 23 of The Uniter (March 24, 2021)