Can a Marriage Survive a Consensual Third Party?

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Dear Em & Lo,
I hope you can help me and my wife with our problem.We have been married 9 years, she is 40 and I’m 41.We are an attractive slim couple but for quite some time my wife has complained about our sex life. The main issue is quite simply that I have a very small penis — just 3 inches fully erect. My wife at first accepted this, but she has become increasingly unsatisfied during penetration, especially when she is aroused. She tells me that she is unable to feel me inside her. Now she has started to talk about a man she works with who has a reputation of being quite well endowed. My wife would like to sleep with him on occasion. I have to admit, this would be a bit of a turn-on, especially as she stated that I could be involved. She would never cheat on me behind my back, as we have such a strong loving relationship. She is very unselfish and has embraced and encouraged my fetish for dressing as a baby girl in diapers, plastic pants, frilly pink panties, nighties, etc, etc. I have a submissive side and this is something we could explore more. We have talked about me being dressed as her baby while she is with her “lover.” What are the positives and negatives of this kind of thing? And could this work out for us?
–Maybe Baby

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10 Comments on "Can a Marriage Survive a Consensual Third Party?"

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I think this couple should really look into the Swingers lifestyle. I’ve met many wonderful, intelligent, loving couples through lifestyle clubs, many of whom are there for this kind of situation- one partner needs more than the other partner can give- and in a swinger environment, the rules are very clear-the primary relationship is of utmost importance and sexual gratification is just for fun, not for finding someone to replace the person you love…though you will wind up with many great, intimate friendships with caring, generous people!

Leigh Olivia

i’m with figleaf, but with the caveat that i don’t really buy this guys story. it sounds a little too much like he was only typing with his left hand.


I’ve tried the ethical nonmonogamy route with bad results. The truth is, the only way this can work is if the third party is someone who you’re both involved with, or there’s a fourth party for your fun. You have to work to keep yourself and your wife as a primary couple, and jealousy (especially with someone better endowed) will come up.
Though if this is the only problem, it’s easily fixed. Strap on, anyone? Clitoral stimulation?

Dave W

I can see figleaf’s point. But I’m not 100% ready to label MB a selfish non-giver based on the content of his letter. An evening out with a lover doesn’t seem like a good idea because it is responding with selfish, possibly devastating behavior. If MB watches or participates(and enjoys), cool. Just make sure it’s about her.

Ephiphany’s point really is excellent. MB has expressed a pretty specific set of strong, overlapping, and unusual fetishes: cuckold, voyeurism, infantilism (cross-dressing, no less) and, it sounds like, “femdom” submissiveness! And since, at least based on MB’s text, it sounds like pretty much everything about the scenario is meant to indulge his fetishes the third party really needs to give informed consent. Also, consider that people with such precise, multiple fetishes can be pretty demanding because can be difficult to meet all their needs. The increased chance of a misfire increases the risk of… awkward conversations at the office between… Read more »
The marriage is in trouble. There are lots of ways to obtain intimate sexual satisfaction even for a woman with a large yoni and a man with a small lingam. (Not smart ass words: the Kama Sutra discusses this very issue.) I suspect her dissatisfaction with him involves more than sex and that she is trying to establish some connection that does not exist in the marriage. Far be me to judge someone else’s chance for happiness. I can’t see that there’s much to lose. Still…human sexual arrangements are idiotic. We are not made for monogamy. Yet every single attempt… Read more »

When I was living in Europe, I met a lot of men and women who indulged in affairs outside their primary relationship. They actually thought this behavior improved their relationships. In some ways, I could see their point – many of those couples have a history and intimacy together I see very rarely in American couples. I wonder if these kinds of open relationships could work here?