Granting your partner a 'leave pass' to have sex with others…

How far would YOU go to please your partner? Tracey Cox reveals the requests you SHOULD indulge and the sex acts to swerve – from threesomes to kinks and giving a ‘pass’ to have sex with others

  • Tracey Cox asks if there’s a sex request that your partner has been dying to ask
  • Sometimes doing something a little risky is good for a couples sex life 
  • She explains what sex requests are worth considering such as a threesome 
  • Going through the do’s and do not’s she goes through ‘leave pass’ and ‘anal sex’ 

Your eyes are glued to the telly, your partner’s eyes are glued to your face as they say, in what they hope is a casual fashion, ‘Hey, I was just thinking, have you ever thought about doing X?’

And there it is: the sex request your partner’s been dying to ask, is finally out there in the open.

Doing something a little risky together is good for couples sexually. 

We’re all inherently lazy and inclined to stay within our comfort zones – being forced to push outside it, is nearly always a good thing.

But there are requests and there are requests.

Feeling a little uncomfortable and worrying it’s not your ‘thing’ is very different to being repelled by an idea or feeling pressured to do something you don’t want to.

Here’s my take on which sex requests are worth considering – and which should be avoided like the plague. 

Tracey Cox explains what sex requests are worth considering such as a threesome. Going through the do’s and do not’s she goes through ‘leave pass’ and ‘anal sex’ (stock image)


It might be every man’s fantasy, but the reality of a threesome is often the stuff of nightmares – especially if it’s two women and one man.

The idea seems amazing – two sets of breasts to play with, two mouths instead of one, both women paying him tons of attention!

And there’s his first mistake: it’s rare (and unfair) for one person to be the ‘star’ of a threesome all the way through. 

In fact, if it’s your first experience with a woman, he’s likely to be cast aside while you enthusiastically embrace your bi-curious side. 

Tracey Cox (pictured) asks if there’s a sex request that your partner has been dying to ask. Sometimes doing something a little risky is good for a couples sex life

Plenty of men feel left out and threatened when this happens.

Also common: the pressure to perform is so overwhelming, he’s unable to get an erection. 

Double the humiliation – and what does he say to his mates, having boasted about how brilliant he’s going to be?

There are many reasons why you should say no to this request for his sake, not yours – but some on your side, also.

Having sex with another person with your partner there with you is not usual. It feels very, very odd. 

Most of us aren’t used to sharing our partners sexually and intense, often disturbing, emotions result.

It’s impossible not to assess how you stack up attractiveness wise; equally as stressful is seeing how much more turned on your partner is by this new person than you. (Logically, you know why but try telling your heart that.)

The perils of threesomes are obvious and many.

But what if you’ve had one (or more) threesomes and your partner hasn’t? Do they have more of a leg to stand on, requesting one?

This is a little trickier because you clearly can’t argue you have a moral objection to the concept. 

But a threesome at university, drunk, with people you know but weren’t attached to, is a very different beast to a threesome with someone you love and are committed to. Age also comes into it. What appealed at 20, might not at 40.

The bottom line: If you’re both threesome ‘virgins’, argue often or feel insecure about each other’s feelings, don’t go there.

Threesomes have the least fallout with couples who can separate sex from love and are used to doing sexually ‘risky’ things together. 

If you’re already visited a fetish club and watched others have sex in front of you, you’ve dipped a toe in and will probably survive with good communication and set rules.

If you’ve had threesomes yourself and think the relationship is strong enough to cope, it might be worth considering a one-off – but only if the idea appeals. 

Don’t do it just because you’ve done something your partner hasn’t.


This tends to happen when one of you has had loads of experience and multiple partners and the other hasn’t.


Here’s how to respond to your partner’s sex request and keep both of you happy.

You have the right to say no. First and foremost, you have the right to say no to anything you don’t like the sound of. 

It is NOT acceptable for your partner to say things like, ‘If you loved me, you’d do it’, blackmail, threaten or make you feel guilty in any way for refusing. 

The litmus test is this: Will it (unintentionally) hurt you emotionally or physically or put you in danger (like breaking the law), if you agree to try it? If the answer is yes, it might do, say no.

Be respectful. It takes courage to ask your partner to do something that’s a little out there. 

It means they trust you not to make them feel stupid. Don’t make a joke about it, don’t tease. 

Do tell them you love that they felt comfortable enough to share their ‘thing’ with you.

Don’t judge. However alike you are, you will still both have different sexual preferences. 

Just because something appeals to your partner and not you, doesn’t make you sexually incompatible – it means you’re human. 

It’s natural to feel a little threatened but resist the urge to lash out with a kneejerk reaction you will regret. 

Saying ‘I always knew you were weird/a pervert/odd’ is not on.

If you need time, say so. If they’re asking you to do something, they’ve been thinking long and hard about it for a while. 

If you had no idea, it’s normal to feel a little shocked and/or surprised and need time to process the request.

A prude or prudent? If you’re not sure whether you’re being ultra conservative, go online. 

Find out whether this is something lots of couples do by searching ‘how many couples do X’. Type in ’20 new things to try in bed’. 

Is it mentioned on the list on mainstream websites? This will give clues on where it falls on the ‘kink’ scale. 

If you have trusted friends who you think are more sexually experienced than you, ask their opinion.

Do your research. Look it up. What’s said about it. What are other people’s experiences. What’s likely to happen. What are things that can go wrong.

Make your decision – and make it clear what you’re promising. It might be that you are happy to try it once, but that’s all. 

Also make it clear that they must be willing to stop at any time, if you aren’t enjoying the experience.

Come up with a compromise. If you’re going to say no, say what you would be willing to do. 

Often, a request to do something is simply a longing to try something new.

It’s OK to go back on a promise made while you were drunk or high. Everything seems like a good idea after a few! 

It does suggest you are at least mildly interested in the concept though. Well worth questioning why you’re saying no sober and if it’s a valid reason (rather than worrying what people might think).

In theory, it sounds both fair and logical: you want to stay together but also don’t want to deny your partner the adventures you’ve had.

After all, surely giving your partner permission to go off and play is better than them having an affair behind your back?

I’m not so sure about that.

Think about what happens when an affair is discovered: it’s not all about trust being betrayed. What haunts people is the unbearable thought of knowing your partner has kissed, touched, licked and penetrated/been penetrated by someone other than you.

Why on earth would you willingly grant permission to someone you love to do what could play on a permanent video in your head…forever?

We are far more territorial than we think: what’s ours is ours and we’re not inclined to share.

It’s also extremely risky. We’re human beings, not robots. What’s to stop your partner developing feelings for this person? Where do you draw the line? 

Are they allowed one person or ten? What about repeats? Will a leave pass satisfy their urge for more partners or offer a taste of forbidden fruit they now can’t resist at all?

The bottom line: The concept works well in sit-coms (when both, inevitably, decide at the very last moment not to go through with it). 

Not so well in dramas (think Indecent Proposal, when Demi Moore did follow through and it derailed the marriage).

It’s luck of the draw whether you meet your ‘person’ early into your sexual experiences or at the stage when you’ve had enough and happy to hang up your sexual skates.

What is in your control is deciding whether to commit when this happens. 

If your partner knew you were more sexually experienced but still chose to pledge monogamy, quite frankly, it’s something they should have thought about then not now.

It’s a big ‘no’ from me for a leave pass. But not necessarily for a similar but conceptually very different request…


Why would a leave pass be riskier than an open relationship? Because it’s generally granted to one person, rather than both.

The only circumstance when you should ever consider making your relationship polyamorous is when BOTH of you want to give that a try.

If your partner has requested it and the idea appalls you, say no and do not be pressured. Leave the relationship if your partner insists because it means you have fundamental differences in what a healthy, happy relationship means.

But if the idea does appeal and you’re intrigued, it might well be worth exploring.

The first thing to do before you go any further: establish what they mean by an open relationship. 

Does it mean you have sex with other people but only have a love relationship with each other? That’s the most common definition but ask, never assume.

Polyamory is something lots of young people, women included, are attracted to. Younger generations aren’t as wed to old-fashioned ideas like The One, or even marriage and babies. Sex is so easily accessible, they place less importance on it.

The obvious upside for both of you is you get the excitement of sleeping with new people and the security of an established relationship.

The bottom line: Jealousy and insecurity aren’t the only things to contend with. As well as setting rules for safe sex, you need to set emotional boundaries.

Who is allowed as a potential partner, who isn’t? Who will you tell? 

Do you want to know about these encounters or not? How often and how much time will you spend with others?

Having a long, in-depth discussion to set the rules will give you vital clues as to how well you would handle it.

If you’re able to talk logically about all these scenarios and don’t feel rattled or threatened, it might be something that suits you.

If you’re feeling sick to your stomach at the very thought, leave well alone and don’t be coerced.


Anal play – stimulating in and around the rectum using a finger, toy or tongue – is something I encourage everyone to try at least once. 

It’s surprisingly enjoyable and the feelings are powerful and unusual.

Done safely, anal intercourse can also be highly pleasurable. 

The problem is it’s often not done safely with lots of women, particularly young women, feeling forced and rushed into it.

Anal intercourse is the norm on porn and porn is where most young men get their sex ‘education’. 

In porn, the woman is equally as eager as the man, there’s no ‘prep’ and the men thrust hard and fast.

To have anal sex safely, you need to build up to it slowly, over many sex sessions, which can take weeks or months.

 You start by introducing a finger, work up to a butt plug, then start by inserting a penis a tiny way, a little at a time. 

Lube is essential, communication and feedback even more so.

This is not happening. One recent study found one in four women who participate in anal sex, say they were pressured into trying it, did so to please their partner not themselves and usually tried it drunk or high.

Differences in the female anatomy mean physical injuries are higher for us and include incontinence, STI’s, pain and bleeding.

The bottom line: If saying yes to this request means agreeing on the spur of the moment to something you’ve never done before, it’s a definite NO. 

Do not be talked into trying it, without having prepared for it, especially while drunk or having done drugs.

If it’s requested by a kind and loving partner you trust, and they are prepared to take their time and take baby steps, it’s worth agreeing to try.

Be aware though that we’re all built differently. If he has a big penis and your anus and rectum are small, it might be impossible to achieve comfortably.


We all have something we hide sexually that does it for us. It might be watching gay male porn as a woman (the men are hotter), it might be longing to have our partner give us a ‘golden shower’ (pee on us).

Lots of us give vent to our kinks during masturbation and/or our choices of porn and that’s enough to satisfy. For others, it’s frustrating not to do it with a partner. Usually,

they’ll wait until there’s a level of trust that hopefully guarantees they won’t be belittled for suggesting it.

Agreeing to indulge a kink is different to agreeing to indulge a fetish. A kink is something you enjoy doing with yourself or a partner; a fetish is something that must be present for you to become sexually aroused.

Your partner wanting you to wear heels naked does not mean they have a shoe fetish. Needing you to wear shoes to derive any sexual pleasure, is.

The bottom line: One person’s kink is another’s ‘ick’. The answer to whether you’ll want to indulge your partners, very much depends on how it aligns to your personal sexual preferences.

If it’s something you’ve never thought of but don’t mind giving a whirl, they’ll love you for saying yes. 

If it doesn’t appeal, consider doing something similar. (If peeing on your partner is a ‘no’, letting them masturbate while watching you pee on the loo might be a yes.)

As with most sex requests, clarify whether they’re asking as a one-off or whether they want it to feature regularly in your sex sessions. 

Most of us are much more open to saying yes to a one-time-only deal.

Tracey’s two product ranges, Tracey Cox Supersex and Tracey Cox Edge are available through Go to for her podcast, books and blog.

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