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Photo by The Dirty Gentleman

Photo by The Dirty Gentleman

Looking over my 30 or so book and story collections, I realize that I write about some type of partner sharing quite a bit. Some of it has been in a poly context of having multiple relationships, some of it (okay a lot of it) is in threesome scenarios, and a bit of it has been cuckold themed. While each scenario comes with its own emotional element, there’s a common thread of watching (or knowing) that a partner is getting it on with someone else.

I’ve written about this personally quite a bit on QNY as well, largely as an attempt to work through my own sexual history in hopes of bringing some understanding to my turn-ons. From my first “real” threesome with an ex-girlfriend and a college buddy, to my first honest open relationship, nearly every relationship I’ve had has included some level of openness, sharing, and on occasion, just plain cheating.

While there are a lot of things about these fantasies that I like, I want to first focus on the outsourcing of my sexual energy, which I think is a vital one for me. Maybe it’s not even energy so much as action, but watching someone I care about with someone else gives me space to enjoy my partner’s sexuality with some distance. But it gives me more than distance, and that’s the complicated part.

Watching my partner with someone else, sexualizes them in a completely different way. At the heart of it, I’m putting my fantasies of an uncontrollable sexual appetite onto my partner. When I sit back and listen to her beg a new partner to fuck her, I’m taking my own desire and passing it to her.

Let me try to say that another way: watching my partner lets me give in to my own desires for sexual freedom without the risk.

It doesn’t require me to be hard, it doesn’t require me to be capable, and it doesn’t require me to handle her pleasure (or even my own). In many ways, I’m taking myself out of the equation (at least partially) in order to remove some of the stress and anxiety that comes with sex.

In Disgusting Beautiful Immoral Thomas get’s to watch his girlfriend give in completely to Brent, and he enjoys the desire he sees in her eyes. He gets to sexualize her, objectify her, and of course, he also turns his jealousy into desire. Her sexual appetite becomes the focus.

In The Places They Come, Peter lets his wife assume all of the risks even though it begins largely as his turn-on. She has all the unprotected sex (almost always a theme with this genre), she puts herself in dangerous situations with men who might abuse her, and she controls everything, leaving him without the responsibility.

And in Driving Lisa, Henry gets to take his sexual attraction to his step-daughter and release it through other men having sex with her without feeling the guilt of his desire. At least until the end.

But in each case, the male character is taking his desires and putting them onto a female partner where he can avoid risk, effort, and fear. Of course, there is still anxiety, often more so, but it’s a different type that they can most often handle it. When they push their partners to let go, there’s an unspoken understanding that they really can’t do the same.

Like I said, there are a bunch of other things to unpack (jealousy, humiliation, control, etc) but this one feels both challenging and honest right now. In the middle of this fantasy, whether it’s sharing, watching, or even just talking about it, is an attempt to put my desires onto someone else who then get to assume the risks along with the pleasure. It’s complicated, but it’s also pretty damn interesting.

Maybe next time I’ll try to dive more into the control aspect of it, which is something I occasionally write about but have struggled with.

But until then, thanks for reading, and as always I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.