Unicorn interviews 6: The Poly Unicorn

child holding unicorn toy
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It will occur to most threesome-seeking couples after a while that obtaining a unicorn from scratch every time is a rather labour intensive and uncertain endeavour, however good at it you become.  If you meet a unicorn you like, would it not be better to keep her around?  Would it even, perhaps, be better to actively seek out a polyamorous unicorn right from the start, to love and cuddle and have that extra spicy excitement with from time to time?  Someone to bring into your relationship, a lovely extra addition to that which you already have?

Well, my baby ducklings, I have some bad news for you.  If you try to venture from swing to polyamory, and enter these forums/pages/sites with the intention of seeking out a female to share as a couple, you are in for a baptism of fire.  The cries of ‘unicorn hunter!’ suddenly sound like the most terrible derision.  The polys despise you, my darlings, and when I went on a forum and explained this post to ask for quotes, I had to spend a day defending my rationale to the best of my (somewhat extensive) linguistic ability, and ameliorating a whole lot of hurt feelings and vitriolic accusations.  Allow me to shield you from this a little, with some explanation.

Similarly to the kink scene, the poly scene has a lot of rules, a lot of lingo to learn, and a lot of literature to read before you even speak to anyone without causing offence.  Asking for clarification on anything will likely give you the response that it’s not anyone’s obligation to educate you.  Allow me to assist a little.

Unlike the swing scene, which is absolutely full of unicorn hunters, where that’s pretty normal and acceptable, the poly scene views you as naive sex tourists who are out to exploit vulnerable individuals and don’t really understand the nature of polyamory.  You are an outsider, boys and girls, come to hurt them.  There are a number of excellent references about exactly why this is, and why unicorn hunting in polyamory doesn’t work (couples privilege, male privilege, unbalanced power dynamics), and a lot of broken-hearted, former poly-unicorns littering the groups.  I’m not going to go over all this here: www.unicorns-r-us.com does an excellent job of helping you understand the issues, and why striding in with your swinger-size-nines to pick up a spare F for your couple is really not cool.  If your intention is sincere, these are issues you really need to understand before you even start trying.

Not to be disheartened, boys and girls.  After a year of searching, I actually have found a happy, poly unicorn to interview.  Truly, this must be the rarest of the rare.  So sit back, relax, and enjoy the last of the unicorn interviews.

 

What would you like me to call you? 
Unicorn N. I’m 24, a single unicorn, pansexual, polyamorous.

 
What brought you to the scene?
Up until November 2017, I’d been in back-to back Vanilla (by which I mean, people who weren’t particularly sex-positive or sexually adventurous) long-term, monogamous relationships. No matter how much I loved someone, I always felt trapped by monogamy. I kept thinking, “I’ve got so much love to give. I can’t be the only person who thinks this way?” I found that I continually developed intense crushes on colleagues or new friends, then spend my time either fantasising about these people or chastising myself for never being able to just love one person at a time. It felt like a personality disorder: I was either swept in euphoria or crippled with guilt. Neither person was really me.

In my most recent relationship, I was engaged to a wonderful woman. Like, 6-months-away-from-walking-down-the-aisle engaged. One day all my doubts, the dreams I’d been shoving down to make room for “our” dreams… it all caught up to me. I called off the engagement. My partner moved out. Everyone asked how my new “freedom” was, but the truth is, I was completely devastated. I’d lost my family, my whole life did a 180 turn overnight. I had been comfortable, content. I had stability (something I did NOT grow up with), but now I knew that “content” just wasn’t good enough.

So, after a lot of crying, drinking and binge-watching sad movies, I got out there. For the first time, really since I was 16, I was single and I was scared shitless. But I had a LOT of things I wanted to try. The first: a threesome. Mainly because I’d watched ‘You Me Her’ and it had set something off in me. Polyamory just made sense to me. Even though the characters went through constant drama, it just looked like a beautiful kind of life to me. So I started researching ‘polyamorous dating’, ‘how to find a couple for threesomes,’ etc. I eventually signed up to Tinder, Bumble, OK Cupid and (most importantly) Feeld. The latter advertises itself as a platform to meet singles and couples. Like most apps, it was hit and miss. But the majority of the people on there were exactly what I was looking for; local, sex-positive, open to new experiences.

 

How did your first MFF come to happen?

Once I had immersed myself in “alternative online dating”, I talked with dozens of couples. A lot of the time nothing came of it; either because they were into things I wasn’t, I became overwhelmed with the intensity of their interest in me, or I suspected there was no couple – just a horny guy looking to get nudes from me. 

The first couple I met, I’d spoken to for a few weeks. We had a group chat on kik and it was a good dynamic, everyone could see everything that was said, so there was no favouritism/jealousy/secrets. They were quirky and fun and we had a lot in common. They were the first couple to make me feel like an equal in their dynamic – however temporarily – they weren’t just looking for a toy for the woman to “experiment” with while the guy watched. There was real interest from everyone, for everyone. They finally came to visit me and we had an amazing night together. And that was it, I was hooked.

 

Would you describe yourself as a unicorn?
Yeah, but only because it makes me feel special. Ha! 

 

What do you feel the difference between poly unicorning and swinger unicorning?In my opinion, poly relationships (however casual/serious) and swinging are totally different ball games. There should be no unicorn in a poly relationship. If your encounter is a one-time adventurous hookup, it’s not polyamorous. That’s a couple swinging with a unicorn. But the two aren’t mutually exclusive. Threesome hookups don’t equal poly, but that doesn’t make any long-term arrangements are automatically poly relationships. It’s all up to the individuals, how they identify themselves and their agreed boundaries.

 

How do you feel being the unicorn in an MFF differs from being the primary female?

Because I’m single, I’ve never really been the primary female. But I have watched playmates of mine have sex with others – and that felt very different from entering a threesome as the unicorn. As the unicorn, there’s little chance of feeling possessive or jealous. But it does open you up to encounters which can leave you feeling empty, shallow, used, lonely. So both sides are tricky and require lots of communication. 

 

What is your favourite dynamic?

Of all the dynamics I’ve experienced, my favourite is with a married couple I regularly see. I think of myself as their unicorn or playmate. They are completely monogamous and deeply in love, it’s incredibly sweet to see and intoxicating to be around.  I see them about once a month and we usually go for dinner and drinks before heading back to theirs. We play together and then all cuddle in their Super King bed.

It’s not poly, in my opinion, because they’re only committed to each other. And as wonderfully as they treat me, I’m on my own. I can’t play with either of them separately. They’re in it together and I’m on the outside of their relationship. But that works for us. They’re getting their needs met and I still get my freedom. 

After a few months, they chose to make me their only unicorn which was wonderful to be told; whatever they’d been searching for from a threesome, they’d found it in me. They give me hope for the kind of marriage I never believed was possible.

 

Do you prefer couples, women or single men?
I love them all – I have a particular soft spot for group play, but I still meet with single men and women and enjoy it.

 

Do you find there is a difference in the way the three groups approach you?

Absolutely! Single women hardly approach me – I think I give off more dominant vibes with women, so I’m often making the first move.

Men are all different – generally, men are quite forward with me, which I think has a lot to do with my very sex-positive, ball-busting demeanour. I don’t present myself as an ultra-feminine, sexually-repressed “lady-like” kind of woman. I’m direct, open and honest with my expectations and desires. That scares a lot of people off. Others find it refreshing. 

Couples are, more often than not, tentative in their approach. Especially if they’re new to it. Either because the woman is anxious to try sex with another woman, the man doesn’t want to overstep and scare the unicorn off OR piss off his Missus by being too keen on another woman. I feel for them, really. So I’m always open and patient, I let them ask me whatever they want and make sure no one feels pressure to do anything. 

 

What is the worst approach you’ve ever had?

In terms of threesomes – I haven’t had particularly awful experiences (touch wood), but I have had some awkward situations. I chatted with a guy for ages when I was first on the scene who lived in Bristol. I really fancied him and his girlfriend, but she was very nervous. Rather than do the noble thing and back off, I kept talking to him, hoping his gf would change her mind. He and I ended up very attached to each other and eventually I had to break off contact because I started to doubt his gf was as in the loop about all this as he’d made out. 

For me, I want to be equally attracted to both people. I won’t sleep with a couple just for the guy or the girl. And similarly, I need to know they both fancy me. 

I also prefer to sleep with women who’re genuinely interested in women, as opposed to just looking for FF play for the enjoyment of their man. Similarly, I like to make sure they’re doing this for the right reasons; “we’re in a rut and wanted to spice things up” – sets off alarms for me, you don’t need a unicorn, you need a therapist… “it’s something we’ve both always wanted and we’ve talked a lot about it and feel we’re ready” – *ding ding ding* We have a winner!

For anything more serious to blossom I’d have to have things in common with both people, we’d have to make each other laugh and there’d need to be a genuine spark from the get-go. 

 

Why do you think most polys despise ‘unicorn hunters’?
I guess it’s kind of impersonal? It’s objectifying to unicorns – like we’re all just cattle in a pen waiting to be chosen. But, I think you could say the same about a lot of labels within the sex and relationship sphere. At the end of the day, the labels help us find what we’re looking for without the awkward rejection of the Vanilla world. If I call myself a unicorn, couples know that I’m open to being approached. Which eliminates a lot of pointless conversations with people who aren’t looking for the same things as me. It’s the same as if I went out looking for a Dom. That doesn’t mean I’d choose just anyone – but it saves a hell of a lot of time spent scrolling through profiles.

 

What would be your ideal, fairytale scenario for your life? Your happy ending?

More and more I’m beginning to think that I’d love to be part of athrouple/triad or poly group. Where I live with multiple partners and we all play together/love each other. But I supposed I’d have to really experience it to know if it was my happy ending.

Failing that, if I had a committed monogamous partner, I’d want them to be someone I could play with in groups or we went to parties together. Basically I don’t think I could ever go back vanilla.

 

How do you feel single girls on the scene are perceived?

By the couples who “hunt” us, I’d have to say I’ve always felt thought of well. Any negativity I’ve suffered has usually come from within – my niggling insecurities, my depression creeping in from time to time. I think if you’re right for a couple and you click, they’re appreciative. Maybe that’s just the glow of my current situation talking, I’m sure some people have faced slut-shaming from this lifestyle. Personally, I think I’m too much of a loud-mouthed feminist for anyone to call me a slut to my face. I love my experiences and I own them, a lot of my friends are guys (who are jealous) or fellow sex-positive people. The only time I’ve been questioned was by a friend’s boyfriend. 

 

What advice would you give to a couple setting out to have their first MFF?

This applies to the question below too – if you’re in a couple, have your shit together before you bring someone else into the mix. Don’t go searching for a 3rd person to improve your relationship. Before you even think of pulling someone else into your dynamic, make sure you COMMUNICATE openly and honestly. I can’t stress that enough. You need to have talked about everything; what could go wrong/right? how will we deal with the unexpected? what do we want out of this? how far are we willing to go? what are our motives? Have these conversations multiple times and then Keep Having Them. Check in with each other. Check in with your unicorn. Check in with yourself. Juggling 3 human beings’ emotions, needs, hopes, fantasies, insecurities can be beautiful – but make no mistake, it’s hard work. Even if you’re under the impression it’s a casual one-time thing, be prepared to fall in love, be prepared to hate each other, be prepared to be disappointed, be prepared to have the time of your life. If you’re not ready for any/all of those possibilities, you’re not ready for this. Stick to the porn-fuelled fantasy in your head.

 

What advice would you give to a couple looking to set up a poly MFF?

Same as my advice above. Only difference is that you need to be prepared for the huge commitment that being a triad entails. PLUS, you’ll have to deal with either hiding your lifestyle or be okay with facing constant judgement and possible backlash in your professional life/upsetting family etc. Any alternative lifestyle is a big commitment and takes time, care and consideration. If you can’t give that, it’s probably not for you. Personally, I’m a dirty hippy at heart. Free love. More the merrier. All that jazz.

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