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My Job Is to Match People Up for Threesomes

We spoke to Patrick from The Threeway Dating Club about the ins and outs of arranging a three-way between a bunch of strangers.

by Nick Chester
12 March 2015, 6:00am

(A publicity shot for the TV show 'Threesome')

Internet dating can be a fucking minefield. Are you female? Prepare to receive roughly one dick pic per day. Are you male? Keep on keeping on, mate; now you've sent over 70 messages I'm sure someone will reply. Looking to set up a date for three people? Everything gets even trickier.

Lucky, then, that services like The Threeway Dating Club exist, where you – a man, a woman or a couple – can link up with others looking for a threesome. The online dating agency arranges dates for trios as part of their commitment to introducing the masses to the joys of polyamory, then coaches them on how to go about it.

I got in touch with one of their matchmakers, Patrick, to find out what he does on his day-to-day.

VICE: Hi Patrick. So how does the technique involved in matching up a three-way date differ from that of matching up a conventional two-way date?
Patrick: Originally, we thought that matching three people at a time would be very different to conventional two-way matching, but it's not. Most of our clients are couples, so although we're dealing with the partnering of three people, it's really matching a couple with a third person.

The majority of your clients are couples?
Over 80 percent are couples. However, our largest growth spurt over the last six months has been young, single females. The majority of our clients are college-educated couples, aged 21 to 34.

Are the couples usually a man and a woman, or do you cater to LGBT couples as well?
Three-way dating is not restricted to heterosexual relationships; we are completely open to people exploring homosexuality and bisexuality. In fact, many people go on three-way dates to explore areas of their sexuality that would otherwise have gone unexpressed. Kinsey research has showed us that there is no one who is truly homosexual or heterosexual. We not only accept this, but advocate exploration and the pursuit of heterosexual and homosexual adventures. Bisexuality, as Kinsey's scale showed, is a natural state.

Do you ever match three single people for dates?
Absolutely. In these cases, we most frequently match a male with two females, but we have matched two females with a male, and we have also matched three females.

How does the process differ from matching a couple and a single person?
When a female is matched with two males, we often don't find it necessary for the two males to have input to one another.

Got you. How popular is your service? Do you get a regular stream of clients?
We get new applicants every day from varying walks of life, some wanting coaching and some wanting matching.

What does the coaching consist of?
Relationships between three people are naturally more challenging than those between two, so coaching is strongly recommended to help people fulfil their true relationship desires and goals. Communication is always paramount in dating coaching. The coaching starts with the clients' initial communication to us about their desires and goals. It then moves on to communication among the members of the three-way date. Coaching starts before the date, and continues well after. We teach issues ranging from health to fantasy fulfilment, and also teach our clients about identifying their boundaries.

"It's an unnatural notion that one is to love only and always one other."

How much do you charge for your service?
Everything we do is tailored to the male, female or couple we're matching. The variables considered include age, matchability and specific goals. The other primary variable in price is geography: there are more people looking for three-way dates in some places than there are in others. This means that the prices vary.

Fair enough. Do many of your clients wish to enter into long-term polyamorous relationships, or do they just want one-off three-way dates?
Although polyamory is something that we are huge proponents of, many people don't understand the challenges that are involved with that type of relationship, which is why we offer education along those lines. The primary goal of our clients is an initial three-way date.

So your service is aimed at opening people up to the possibilities of polyamorous relationships?
Of course. We believe that polyamorous relationships should be recognised as legitimate relationships. They have always existed, and will always exist, but, unfortunately, they have always been suppressed by a society that doesn't understand them. It's an unnatural notion that one is to love only and always one other. Infidelity and natural exploration has destroyed marriage, family, society and more for too long. Polyamory is a natural state that we should and could exist in.

Polyamorous relationships, to us, are more than one-night stands. We strive to match three people for the relationship that they desire, whether that be for a night or for a lifetime. We explain to people that the desires they have are natural, instinctive and fun. Ongoing education about polyamory is paramount to who we are. We offer free initial consultations with our matchmakers, and in these consultations our primary goal is understanding clients' short and long-term goals so that we can properly educate them about how to achieve those goals.

How frequently do the dates that you arrange result in long-lasting three-way relationships?
We have received feedback informing us that lasting friendships frequently occur that continue past the initial three-way adventures.

Do you help to plan the details of the date or just match the trios?
Many times, the three people going on the adventure have never met. We listen, communicate, recommend and offer to facilitate a date that ensures that everyone's wishes are fulfilled. For instance, we once set up a date between two men and a woman who was initially nervous about being with two men in a three-way date. This was in spite of the fact that it was something that she had been interested in for years. We asked her what her interests were and she told us that they were jazz, wine and fine dining in upscale hotels, so we set up a date that involved these things, ensuring everyone had a good, comfortable time.

Who usually foots the bill for the dates?
Typically couples pay the bill for single females. Rarely do we find a single female paying the bill. In the case of a couple and a single male, it can go either way. It boils down to personal preference.

It says on your website that you use criminal databases and face recognition software to vet your clients. Does this mean that people with minor criminal records are automatically barred?
Criminal databases and face records are used to ensure that we do not match clients with nefarious people. Criminal records do not automatically disqualify people, but sex offenders or people who we have found to have civil judgments against them for activities such as stalking or malicious assault are automatically excluded from matching.

That's good. Finally, how would you respond to critics who say that dating is only intended for two people?
Well, three-way dating isn't for close-minded people; it's about freedom of expression and choice. I have difficulty understanding how two people, after limited courtship, enter into a monogamous and inseparable union vowing death 'til they part. I don't understand it, but I accept it for them. However, when I examine divorce rates, it makes me question why these critics are so against what we do. Why be against others' happiness with regards to love or friendship when your own institution is so clearly broken? If we had the same success rates in three-way dating as conventional marriages do, we would be out of business. So we say good luck to anyone seeking happiness through romantic couplings and friendships, and we hope you find a way that makes you happy.

Thanks, Patrick.

More stuff about this kind of stuff:

Polyamory Is a Good Way to Be Slutty Without Hurting Anyone

Scientists Are Working Out Whether You Can Have a Baby with Yourself

Three's Company