Throuple Dating – All You Need to Know

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Throuple Dating - All You Need to Know

Polygamy is not new, as it can be traced way back. However, contrary to popular belief, polygamy is no longer limited to marriage. 

Individuals are practicing non-monogamy while dating, hence the rise of polyamorous relationships, open dating, and many other new dating concepts. 

Throuple dating falls under this category as it involves dating more than one person, but it’s not the same as open dating or threesomes. 

For a better understanding, here is everything you need to know about throuple dating. You’ll learn the basic structure of the throuple dating concept, from the definition to how it works and tips to make the relationship successful. 

Keep reading to learn all these things and more.

What Does Throuple Dating Mean?

The word throuple comes from two words: three and couple. As you’ve probably guessed, a throuple is a relationship structure involving three people. So instead of a couple, they form a throuple.

And don’t get it twisted. This is no dating game where partners can bring in anybody they feel like and later dump them.

A throuple is a serious relationship in which all parties are in love with each other and commit to a relationship. 

Generally, partners should be equals and consent to the relationship, just like in a romantic relationship between two people, except that this involves three people.

Like every relationship, there are challenges in a throuple relationship. And as you can imagine, they demand more effort and investment than a couple. 

More clarity

As I said, a throuple falls under the concept of non-monogamy. We can also say it’s a form of polyamory. 

Polyamory is the practice of dating multiple partners at once, with the informed consent of those involved. 

But unlike polyamory, a throuple relationship can be exclusive, and partners commit to each other. That means the three parties involved only have intimate relationships with each other. Such a relationship is said to be closed.

However, a throuple can be left open, meaning partners can have sex with others outside the throuple but cannot be romantically involved with other people (fall in love with others). 

It’s also worth noting that a throuple is not a threesome. Often, a “threesome” occurs when a couple invites a third party for purely sexual pleasure. It is considered erotic and only for sexual pleasure, nothing more.

We also have triadic relationships. They are relationships involving three partners. A triad can only be called a throuple if the three partners are all romantically and sexually involved with each other. 

However, there are instances in a triad where one person is interested in two people, but the two are not romantically interested in each other. As such, they can remain friends or casual acquaintances, but they know they are dating the same person.

Such a triad is called a “vee” relationship. 

A throuple having a movie date night
A throuple having a movie date night

How Does a Throuple Work?

Based on the above discussion, a throuple can work in different ways. Some of these ways include:

Three people who are romantically interested in each other agree to commit to each other and make their relationship exclusive and closed. This means they are all equals in the relationship and are only allowed to be sexually involved with each other, not anybody outside the throuple.

Alternatively, the same three partners in a throuple can agree to keep their relationship open so that parties involved can have sexual relations with people outside the throuple but are not permitted to be romantically involved with anyone else. So basically, you only pursue others for sexual satisfaction, nothing more. 

In our case, we’ve assumed the three partners were never romantically involved with each other before. However, there are instances where a pre-existing couple or even married partners invite a third party to form a throuple. 

Sometimes throuples start as threesomes, where couples invite a third party to spice up their bedroom experience but end up falling for the other person.

But like I said, it can only be a throuple if all three people—the existing couple and the new member—are romantically and sexually interested in each other. So in case the new member is only interested in one individual in the pre-existing couple, that’s not a throuple.

Simply put, all three parties should be crazy about each other to form a throuple, and it cannot be one-sided.

Throuples should work like couple relationships. It should be exactly like a relationship with two people, but now with three partners. 

Another thing is that throuples can be formed by individuals of any sexual orientation and gender identity. It can also be made up of people who don’t conform to any gender. 

That means a throuple can involve two women, one man, one woman, two men, pansexuals, homosexuals, and any three people attracted to each other. 

There are no strict rules here regarding who should make a throuple and who shouldn’t. Labels don’t matter here. After all, love is love, and if you can love two people equally at the same time, why not?

Can a Throuple Relationship Work?

If all parties involved are intentional about each other and focus on making their relationship work, they will enjoy a successful throuple.

So yes, a throuple relationship can work like any other romantic relationship, but it demands more effort and investment than a duo relationship. 

Every person must ensure they treat their two partners right. Remember, partners in a throuple should be equals, and maintaining a balance is crucial.

Like any other relationship, there will be challenges involved (we’ll cover the common ones later). It won’t be easy, but with genuine intentions, effort, and determination, this relationship can be something incredible!

Tips to a successful throuple relationship

Tips to a successful throuple relationship
Tips to a successful throuple relationship

If you’re in a throuple or thinking about trying one, here are some tips for a successful experience.


Air everything out, as it’s the only way to a successful relationship. Communication is vital in a duo relationship and, more importantly, in a throuple.

Always talk things out if there is a misunderstanding or indifference. Even for things that seem trivial, it’s important to make an effort and communicate. 

If you’re not good at communicating, work on that. Communication is the only solution to almost everything. Think about it: You want your partners to know your feelings about something, your needs, and your desires.

The only way to make this clear is by communicating. Even in the bedroom, communication is still essential.

Practice equality

Throuples operate under the principle of equality, and it’s the critical rule that makes it work. Humans are sensitive and emotional beings. As such, any kind of favoritism may cause an imbalance in the relationship.

That said, for it to work, never make one person feel less appreciated or less loved by word of mouth or actions. If you’re going out for a movie or any other activity, all partners should be involved, regardless of their schedule. 

Make time to bond over such things according to everyone’s schedule. You should also understand that you’re all different, so don’t compare each other. Take each partner exactly as they are, and you’ll have a fantastic time together. 

Be honest

Change is inevitable, and sometimes our needs and feelings change with time. Since you can’t avoid change, be honest when your needs or concerns change so you are all on the same page. 

Transparency is as essential in a throuple as it is in any other relationship. Be genuine about your feelings, needs, interests, and anything else that might affect your relationship. It doesn’t have to be a negative change, but letting everyone know what’s going on makes it easy to make the relationship work. 

Have rules

Every throuple relationship needs some ground rules; otherwise, it will be chaos. All parties should agree on what is acceptable and what is not. As I said, some partners make their relationship open so that they can sleep with other people outside the throuple.

In such a case, there should be clear guidelines on who you’re allowed to sleep with, how to practice safe sex, and more. 

For example, we’ve already established that, though you can sleep with someone else in an open throuple, you are not allowed to be romantically involved with them. 

For example, if one of the members sleeps with their ex and they rekindle whatever they had, it will cause conflicts.

So in such an instance, it’s probably wise to establish that you’re not allowed to sleep with your ex.

Work on yourselves

Nobody is perfect, but the idea is what you do about your imperfections. If you’re not a clear communicator, what are you doing about it?

Self-development is very important, both for yourself and those around you. If everyone in a throuple works on themselves to be better, they make it easy to be in a relationship. 

Always be ready to compromise

There are a lot of things you won’t like about your other partners. Learn to accept them because there are also things they don’t like about you.

Besides, it takes work to make time for two people while navigating your personal and social lives. This means you should be willing to make sacrifices and compromise whenever necessary.

Learn to overlook some things and focus on making things work. 

A throuple eating breakfast together
A throuple eating breakfast together

Can a Throuple Get Married Legally?

According to the law, an individual cannot marry two people at the same time. Going by this, a throuple cannot be legally married.

However, there have been instances and cases where polyamorous relationships, such as throuples have come up with their legal unions. 

It may not be a legal marriage per se, but there are instances where a throuple couple got a legal document that recognized them as a family that lives together under one roof.

In such a case, a throuple can do anything a couple would do. Whether it’s owning a pet or buying a house, they are free to enjoy life like anyone else.

And though the ins and outs of such a relationship may confuse the monogamous community, a throuple can enjoy dating while making their own rules. So if they want to move in and sleep on the same bed, they can still do that.

Challenges of Being in a Throuple

The dynamics of a throuple relationship are a little complex. Three might be a magic number, but sometimes it’s not easy to maintain balance.

Some of the common challenges in a throuple relationship include:


Parties involved might try their best to treat each other equally, but sometimes things are not always smooth. For example, the likelihood of loving one person more than the other is still high.

Even if it’s not love, imagine an instance where you’re trying to solve misunderstandings. It’s expected that the third person might be assumed to take sides, no matter how neutral they try to be.

It might start as nothing, but with time, the other person starts getting jealous and assumes you love the other partner more. 


Insecurities are normal in every romantic relationship. Partners in a couple feel threatened by third parties outside their relationship. 

In a throuple, two partners might have more in common, making the other person feel threatened. It might be very honest and unintentional, but it might bring some negative energy. 

Societal stigma 

Though we are embracing modern dating and its dynamics, there are still stereotypes about open dating and polyamorous relationships.

That said, partners in a throuple relationship will have to deal with societal stigma. There will be stares, uncomfortable questions, and much talk behind your back.

It might be easier for some than others, especially if such stigma comes from close people like relatives. 

A throuple enjoys spending time together outside
A throuple enjoys spending time together outside

How to Know if a Throuple is Right for you

You’re the only person who can make a decision that involves your feelings. That is to say, whether a throuple is right for you depends entirely on you.

If you’re unsure, you can research deeper about throupledom and polyamorous relationships to learn more.

In addition, read about other people’s experiences and ask questions if you get a chance. I know this might not affect your feelings directly, but it helps you understand better how you feel about it.

Another thing: work on yourself and try to understand what you want. Take time, as this is not something to rush on. You will not only hurt yourself but also two other people.

Bottom Line

Throuple dating might be new to you, especially if you belong to the monogamous community, but it’s not new to the polyamorous community.

It’s a romantic relationship involving three partners who consent to a relationship. Partners love each other equally and decide to enjoy their love without the rules and dynamics of traditional dating.

Like all relationships, this one has its benefits and disadvantages. The idea is to enjoy it, let things flow, and be intentional about the relationship.

Photo of author


Over the years, Stephanie has had her fair share of dating experiences. While some turned out great, others weren't so great. She believes that relationships are meant to be fun, exciting, and full of laughter. She wants to help men and women become confident, attractive, and successful in their romantic relationships.