How to Have a Threeway…With Your Girlfriend & Your Ex Husband

I used to know this guy in San Francisco named Ronny Jay Boyd. Ronny is a vegan and into polyamory (you get a lot of this in San Francisco). He is also vociferously against circumcision, so much so that he wrote a whole book about the topic and was featured on 20/20.  He used to ask me to have sex with him all the time.

“No, Ronny, I can’t,” I’d say.  “I’m married.”  (Even if I’d been single I wouldn’t have wanted to sleep with him. Ronny looks like a little elf. A smart elf, but an elf just the same.)

“Doesn’t your girlfriend get mad that you sleep with other people?” I asked him once.

“Not really,” he said.  “Sure, she feels jealous.  But what’s so bad about feeling jealous?  What’s so bad about feeling anything? Once you get through an uncomfortable feeling it passes through you. You get to a higher place.”

I thought very long and hard about polyamory when my ex-husband Mark came to visit me and my first real girlfriend Moira in Park Slope. Mark and I had been separated for about a year. We hung out in Moira’s apartment and talked for a while. Mark liked Moira.

“Let’s have a threesome!” I suggested. We all laughed, but after he left for the night, Moira and I talked it over more seriously.

I said, “You know, maybe a threesome would get me off the hook for leaving him. He’s single now. There won’t be a better time.”

Moira hadn’t had sex with a man since she was a teenager.

“Well, it could be kind of fun,” she said.  She grinned and laughed a little.

Moira may be a hypochondriac and fearful of committed relationships and we may have had a terrible breakup, but I will say this: she embraced the edgy and the weird pretty well, and she knew how to have a good time besides.

“Let’s do it,” I said, thinking about what Ronny Jay and my friend Leesa said about being uncomfortable.  “I’ve never had one before.  What if I’m missing out on something fabulous?”

Again, bad boundaries, inappropriate, irresponsible — the list goes on and on.

“Does Moira really want to do that?” Leesa asked. Leesa is one of those gays that has never been with a man in her life.  The idea of having sex with the opposite sex is outright anathema to her.  Even discussing it makes her shudder.

“I think she does,” I told Leesa.

“And you?  Won’t it make you uncomfortable?”

“You said it was okay to be uncomfortable.”

“I don’t want to talk about that anymore,” Leesa said.  “You have totally distorted the concept.”

“Just do it,” another friend told me.  “Whenever I feel uncomfortable, I know I’m about to change.”

So we did.  A threesome!  The three of us called it, affectionately, the menage.

There have been a lot of movies and television episodes where the guy starts out really excited to be in a threesome with two girls but soon discovers that he’s the odd man out while two women have their way with each other. I wish I could report that this was our situation, but as it happened the only person who ended up feeling like an outsider was me. As soon as the clothing came off, Moira and Mark started having at each other like long-lost lovers from some televised version of The Promise. At one point I actually sat back against the pillows and watched the whole thing unfold like a B movie gone awry.

“Come on, Zemser,” Moira called, all muffled, from underneath the blanket, feeling around with one hand until she found my arm.  “Get in here.”

Oh, what the hell, I thought. Menage a trois is a French term, after all.  All French people are bisexual, aren’t they?  Maybe the same holds for American women, I thought.

We were all very busy doing things to each other for quite some time. It was often hard to keep track of who put what where, and there were moments when the whole to-do felt a little like a fundraiser event where everyone delegated jobs and formed smaller committees, but at the end we were functioning like one person with a lot of arms and legs. Then something amazing happened.  This is one of those details that is horrifying to admit on a public forum but so incredible that you feel you must share it with everyone you know: all three of us had an orgasm at exactly the same time.  How was this possible?  I can’t tell you.  It did happen, though.  It really did.

We did it again the second night, and even made plans for a third get-together after Mark went out dancing in the city somewhere.  But when he called from his hotel room, Moira motioned to me that she’d had enough. It was fun, she said, but also overwhelming. She couldn’t take the negotiating, both during the menage and afterward, and she was starting to get jealous of my relationship with Mark. To be honest, I was relieved. I’d spent most of the second session feeling guilty about the fact that I wished Mark would leave so I could be alone with Moira.

Mark was profoundly disappointed.

“I’m glad we’re all going out to dinner,” he said, his voice tinged with sadness.  “But the menage!  What about the menage?”

Mark flew back to San Francisco and eventually got married to someone very nice.  He doesn’t speak to me at all, but it’s not because of the menage.

The above is the 11th installment of a hilarious ongoing series by author and squirrel hunter Amy Bronwen Zemser called “How to Thaw Your Unborn Child.” Start at the beginning here. Read more of Amy’s adventures on her blog,

Amy on coming out, homophilia & sexual identity:
My Husband Has No Penis

One Comment

  1. Ha, this is one of the best descriptions of a threeway I’ve read in a long time: “It was often hard to keep track of who put what where, and there were moments when the whole to-do felt a little like a fundraiser event where everyone delegated jobs and formed smaller committees, but at the end we were functioning like one person with a lot of arms and legs.” Except that most threeways I’ve heard about never make it to that functional one person/many arms and legs stage.

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