Throuple dating is a relatively new term in online dating that refers to three-way relationships. Although introduced by popular TV shows such as Trigonometry, Genera+ion, and You Me Her, this dating concept was largely ignored or misunderstood by wider audiences.
Whether you’re into the above shows or just curious about alternative relationship concepts, throuple dating might be the right approach to online dating for you. This throuple dating guide will delve deeper into this type of dating, the rules it follows, and more.
What is Throuple Dating?
Throuple is an invented term that refers to a mix of the words three and couple. Throuple dating is an innovative phrase used by online dating fans to describe romantic relationships between three people. In throuple dating, every participant shares intimacy with the other two.
The three persons are linked emotionally and intimately with each other. Contrary to popular belief, such relationships can be as serious and meaningful as monogamous connections, despite the media representation.
Three-way relationships involve the same level of commitment as regular couples. However, most legal entities don’t recognize throuple dating as a legal relationship framework due to being a non-monogamous dating format.
What Makes it Different from other Relationship Types?
Although many would confuse it with open relationships and polyamory, the throuple format is quite different. While it may share some notions with the two, such as being a form of ethical non-monogamy, it’s essential to differentiate these terms.
Polyamorous persons prefer having meaningful connections with more than one partner, including intimate and consensual relationships. In other words, all people involved must give consent before engaging in a polyamorous relationship.
Polyamory is based on the notion that this type of relationship is normal and desirable. It doesn’t differ from a monogamous relationship aside from involving the third person. That’s why polyamorous people feel there’s nothing wrong with being intimate with more than one partner at a time.
An open relationship revolves around an intimate couple who share the idea of having romantic and erotic connections, such as casual sex or occasional flings, outside their relationship. Although the goal is to form long-term emotional connections, couples that practice open relationships usually avoid commitment or lasting emotional bonds.
Compared to these two concepts, throuple dating can be both, but it all comes down to the personal preferences of those involved. However, it’s vital to mention that, unlike open relationships and polyamory, throuples may date others outside the threesome, and each partner may have one or more partners on the side.
Rules in Throuple Dating
Each throuple is unique with its own agreements, making it hard to narrow the basic rules of engagement. However, triads can choose how they want their relationship to carry out.
They must determine the best course of action they want to take and what approach works best for them regarding how they want to date other people, etc. Since things can get confusing, here are the most common options that most throuples practice.
This option involves throuple relationships where one partner has a relationship with the other two, but their partners don’t share intimate connections with each other.
The way partners relate to one another depends entirely on their agreement.
In some cases, triads can be close friends. On the other hand, they can be strangers. All that matters is the sexual or romantic link all three partners share.
Sometimes, triads decide to look for romantic and erotic adventures outside the throuple, and that’s perfectly fine as long as their partners have nothing against this kind of behavior. In fact, this is a common situation among triads, so common that most of them don’t count it as cheating.
However, as mentioned earlier, we recommend asking for your partners’ consent to avoid awkward situations. Your relationship will be fine as long as all three of you agree on the same thing. That’s why it’s essential to set ground rules for governing a particular throuple.
People have different preferences, and most wish to consent before their partners can date other people outside of their primary relationship.
The best case scenario is when all three partners sleep together, so nobody feels ignored or neglected. It’s a common thing to feel left out in a three-way relationship. The best way to avoid awkward situations is to base your throuple relationship on individual preferences.
If one of your partners wants to sleep with others, talk it out and find a mutual ground where you all feel comfortable with such a decision. Some people wish to date others outside the triad, while others prefer staying within their comfort zone.
It’s important to understand that you can’t go wrong here; whatever you choose is fine as long as others agree. After all, all that matters is catering to each partner’s individual needs.
Some will want to sleep with other partners, and others will feel better rotating between partners to ensure everyone enjoys equally. That’s where throuples resemble monogamous relationships – both revolve around fulfilling your partners’ wishes and vice versa.
Throuple data nights work in a similar way to sleeping arrangements. Triads arrange date nights to involve all three partners and enjoy activities everyone loves. Since there are no rules to abide by here, you can organize your data nights however you see fit.
They can involve all three of you, or you can go on separate dates. Whatever rocks your boat will work here. However, make sure your partners are OK with your decisions. No one should feel left out, and everyone should receive equal treatment.
No matter how different you and your parents might be, you should all be open about your desires, boundaries, goals, and feelings to make your three-way relationship work flawlessly.
Looking for a Throuple Unicorn
Since people have general misconceptions about the role of a unicorn in a triad, we’ve decided to share some light on the matter. A unicorn can be any pansexual, bisexual, or heteroflexible individual who actively seeks out a couple of other partners to form a throuple.
There are two scenarios here:
- A couple seeking out a third compatible partner for a triad;
- A single looking for a couple to engage in a throuple.
In the first case scenario, a couple consists of one bisexual and one heterosexual partner. However, there are no general rules here, and anything goes. A couple can be of any sexual orientation. The most common situation is when a couple goes on a unicorn hunt.
From society’s point of view, there’s a lot of stigma around unicorn hunting, as many monogamous people see it as unethical and nothing but turning an individual into an object of sexual desire. In reality, this hasn’t been the case as throuples work hard to avoid disregarding unicorns’ needs, wishes, and feelings.
The Legality of it All
Although state entities don’t recognize three-way relationships, there’s nothing illegal about them. Adults are free to engage in relationships however they see fit. Three consenting partners won’t face legal obstacles for being in a throuple relationship.
However, they can’t get married or harness the benefits, such as tax deductions for married couples. Thankfully, as society progresses to a new era of social relationships, things might get better for triads.
The best example is the 2017 Canadian court case where one woman and two men in a three-way relationship claimed legal parenthood over their child and won.
Throuple Dating Challenges
A throuple relationship promises security, affection, and love for all three persons involved. However, it also challenges the partners in unique ways due to many insecurities and the absence of rules.
When a couple finds a new partner, they might feel insecure about their role in the relationship. That’s why a triad should invest time and effort in working out what the relationship means to them and how they want to go with it.
Lack of communication and closure are among the biggest challenges for three-way couples. A three-way relationship shouldn’t be a competition where a partner must fight to win the affection of the other two.
Triads should enjoy an equilateral relationship and work in sync with each other to achieve harmony and mutual happiness.
It’s not Widely Accepted in Society
Then, there’s also the society-sanctioned dismissal. Dyadic relationships are still the norm, and who knows when things will change in favor of throuples.
Let’s face it. No one wants to come to a family holiday with two partners only to overstay their welcome. You can see many disadvantages of triads wherever you go. Hotels and resorts cater to couples, wedding invitations include +1, marriage only works for two, and the list goes on.
Then, there’s secrecy. Since most triads revolve around a primary couple, the third partner might feel left out hiding in secrecy while their partners enjoy all the perks of being together.
The Feelings and Expectations are Different for Everyone
Finally, people involved in a triad usually have very different expectations.
They form their relationship goals around the connection they share with the other two partners. However, this connection differs from person to person. Partners tend to evolve at their own pace, and all three people can’t achieve the same relationship dynamic simultaneously.
These discrepancies usually lead to inequities among partners, invoking painful feelings between them that can escalate beyond their control.
Tips to Make it Work
They say three’s a crowd, but there are plenty of people in successful love triangles. Here are some tips to make throuple dating work for you.
Communicate at All Times
No matter what kind of relationship you have with your partners, you must all communicate openly. Communication is at the core of every relationship, and triads are no exception. All three of you must be honest with each other for a throuple to work.
If someone isn’t making extra efforts to express their feelings, that’s a sign that something is wrong. No matter how embarrassing you think something might be, bring it in the open and in front of your partners. Honesty strengthens your bond and provides the foundation for undoubtful intimacy.
Establish Some Rules
While no specific rules apply to throuple relationships, you and your partners should work together to set ground rules collectively.
That’s a perfect opportunity to communicate and understand what you all are comfortable with, including the things or situations that are unacceptable.
Every person has a limit, and it’s better to find the deal-breakers to ensure your relationship works.
Take the Time to Indulge Yourself
In addition to setting ground rules, making time for yourself and each other is the key to happiness. That’s how you show you care for your partners and vice versa. All three of you should indulge yourself in every way possible, and spending quality time shouldn’t be a luxury but a privilege.
Communicate your feelings, show understanding for your partners, share intimate details, and do as many things you all like as possible. Doing things together is an excellent way to establish a profound connection with each other.
Since each partner has a favorite activity or a hobby, find out what that might be and make time to enjoy it together. Aside from happiness, doing things together will help you to learn how to compromise and navigate your insecurities and jealousy.
Throuple dating goes far beyond simple excitement and adventure; it exists to make people happy. However, we understand how easy it is to get lost in all that commotion, especially if you’re new to this type of relationship. Don’t forget your feelings amidst the emotional whirlwind.
If something doesn’t feel right, that’s probably because it isn’t. Be open and honest with your partners about your desires, wishes, feelings, and relationship goals, and you’ll have the time of your life without a doubt.