sex

“I'm happily married with three kids, but my partner and I have sex with other couples."

There is nothing like the arrival of children to put a dampener on the sexy times in a relationship. Whether it is the feeling of exhaustion at the end of another busy day or logistical dilemmas involving kids sleeping in your bed; parenting usually equals less sex.

This is not the case for everyone and some couples with kids are not only managing to have hot sex at home, they are also making time to have hot sex with other people. Mamamia spoke to two such couples about why, when and how they visit sex clubs or swap sexual partners, as they juggle the responsibilities and demands of parenting.

Natalie and Adrien* are in their mid-thirties and have three children under seven. Together for seventeen years and married for ten, the couple enjoy plenty of hobbies including hiking, kayaking, dining out and watching Netflix. About once a month they also ‘play’ or have sex with other people.

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For Natalie, the benefits of swinging are unbeatable.

“It’s all the fun and excitement of dating – but as a team – which is a lot of fun! We’ve enriched our lives with friendships we would never have otherwise formed with like-minded, sexy and relaxed couples.

“Beyond the fun, our communication has really improved in terms of learning to listen and articulate our emotions to each other, which is essential in the partner-swapping scene.

“Swinging has given us a naughty little secret together that even in times of stress, one of us can make a joke about or give a wink or wry smile that immediately eases the tension. We believe it’s forced us to focus on us and our relationship and not be overwhelmed by the demands of parenting.”

Sydney based professional couple Jeremy and Lou* are both thirty years old with one child aged six. They have a passionate sex life but started swinging and experimenting in ‘the lifestyle’ after feeling they had lost some of their personal identity when becoming parents.

“We spent a long time exploring the fantasy of ‘playing’ with others before actually considering it. We had tried to look for other couples for private play but found it was a real hit-and-miss experience with a lot of talk and no action.

“Finally, we settled on Our Secret Spot club in Sydney, given its reviews online and how active the owners seemed to be in the industry. That first night we booked ourselves a hotel room and an overnight babysitter, I was so nervous that we showed up too early and were the first ones there!

“This lifestyle has allowed us to identify that we have needs that lie outside of our family and that it’s important to give them life. It’s also enabled us to feel closer as a couple and raised our level of intimacy and trust. You can’t expect to watch your partner have sex with someone else if you don’t have a unique level of trust that they aren’t doing it elsewhere as well.”

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For both couples, the main difficulty lies in the logistics and expense of locking in childcare and getting out of the house. Jeremy and Lou are fortunate enough to have a full-time au pair living at home who encourages them to go out, whereas Natalie and Adrien who live in a small rural town, have to use family or paid babysitters.

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“Going out to a club involves a lot of planning and we book babysitters or rely on grandparents if they are available. Due to the difficulty in getting out without the children and the cost of organising a room and babysitting, we are less inclined to meet new couples on dates. We are more likely to go out to a club, just because we know we will have a good time there,” said Natalie.

“As we live in a remote area, we need to be cognisant of our children’s fatigue, for example we couldn’t expect them to travel out of town with us two weekends in a row.”

According to Natalie, another difficulty for anyone without a live-in au pair is also the hangover the next day.

“The biggest downside particularly from a parenting perspective is probably the morning after going out! We tend not to drink too much because we prefer to be fully functioning and cognisant in the lifestyle environment, but coming home at 3am with children who will be up at 5am can be rough. We try to take it in turns, allowing one of us to sleep whilst the other sees to the children’s needs and then switch mid-morning but it’s still hard!”

Natalie and Adrien believe that swingers clubs are the best place for interested couples to ‘dip their toes’ into the scene and Lou recommends starting with some thorough research.

“Research first and don’t be discouraged if the first few times are not much good. If we gave up at the start, we wouldn’t have had some of the amazing experiences we have,” said Lou.

Both couples believe that their sexy shared secret provides some fun into otherwise very busy lives.

“At any stage of your life coming into the swinging lifestyle will present some pros and cons. Having children can be difficult in terms of planning, getting away and the costs of sitters but the kids also give us a good perspective that swinging is just a fun, sexy hobby and that we have other far more important priorities in life,” said Natalie.

Lou feels strongly that just because she and Jeremy are now parents it doesn’t mean they can’t enjoy naughty pleasures.

“Too many people think that their lives and their desires should be ‘turned off’ when they have kids and I don’t think they need to be. It’s not selfish to think of your needs and wants and I think that being fulfilled personally (of which my lifestyle with my husband is one small part) allows me to be a better parent.”

* Names have been changed to maintain privacy. 

Have you ever considered swinging or swapping sexual partners? Or do you think it is the worst idea ever? Tell us in the comments section below.

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