Swinging. Who does it and why.

Time to hear from our sex correspondent Kerri Sackville. I am not going to tell you whether or not she’s a swinger.  But she does have some interesting questions to pose about the MECHANICS of it. Kerri writes….

The SFW (safe-for-work) type of swinging.

“I have absolutely nothing against swinging. As long as it involves two consenting adults, it sounds like a fine idea.

In principle, anyway.

The thing is, it’s the technicalities of swinging that baffle me. Not… you know… the technicalities of the act itself – I’m pretty au fait by now with all that. It’s the organisational aspect of swinging that worries me. How does the whole thing actually work?

I mean, how do two people begin their swinging careers? Do they choose a couple and decide they want to have sex with them? This, to me, already poses two distinct problems.

For a start, how do you choose a couple? Out of my fairly wide circle of friends, there are virtually no couples for whom I would be as willing to have sex with the husband as my own husband would be willing to have sex with the wife. And even if we did stumble upon such a couple, how would we approach them? Hi Jane, hi John, we’ve so greatly enjoying seeing you at school concerts and the footy, we thought we could all take our clothes off and have intercourse? Nope. I just can’t think of a smooth way to segue into that particular conversation.

The other option, of course, is to join a Swinger’s Club. It’s purpose built and there’s no question that the couples who attend are perfectly happy to pop round after dinner for a bit of a shag. But that, too, worries me. Sure there’ll be lots of couples there, and sure there’ll be lots of men to choose from. But how do you know that all the good ones won’t be taken by the time you get your turn? It would be like being at a party when a box of chocolates is opened and passed around the room. You just know that by the time it gets to you, the macadamia centres and hard caramels will be all gone, and you’ll be stuck with the horrid orange cream (whilst no doubt, at the back of the room, your husband is chomping away merrily on a nice mint slice).

Of course, there’s the other, equally difficult alternative. It is possible that you will actually score the pick of the bunch (say, the raspberry fondant) and it will be the most delicious thing you’ve ever tasted, EVER. And you’ll want to come back to the party, time and time again, dying for some more. But the next time you’re there, the fondant is being eaten by someone else, or – worse – the fondant doesn’t want to be eaten by you again. This, my friends, would be absolutely heartbreaking.

OR – possibly the most dangerous scenario of all – the fondant is very happy to be eaten by you, and you become totally addicted to each other. Before long, you are sneaking out every single night to have a raspberry fondant. In other words, instead of swinging, you are now having an affair.

So how does it work? How can people swing, without all the complications and feelings associated with having sex with other people? It all sounds a little bit difficult to me.

I think I might just stick with my chocolate swirl.

Okay so it is clear that Kerri hasn’t had too much hands-on experience swinging so I asked her to find someone who had. Helpfully, she found this insight from onlymelbourne:

Meet Paul. He’s 40 and is honest about the scene that society labels as a one-way ticket to male utopia. His moral code is also fairly rigorous. He only has safe sex, will not sleep with married people who keep their swinging a secret from partners, will not “play” with any woman he feels is there under duress to satisfy her partner’s fantasies, and will only indulge swingers whose company he enjoys socially. Turning women on turns him on, it’s that simple.

“I took a partner to a get-together when her fantasy was to have a number of guys and there were eight at the time. Most guys wouldn’t do that because there’s nothing in it for them. It didn’t make me uncomfortable at all.”

He has come across others who try to take take advantage of the scene: men who treat it as a meat market, manipulative, single women who play havoc with happily swinging couples, men who encourage their wives into bisexual encounters but who baulk at the thought of fulfilling her double-lover dreams.

“There’s no doubt in my mind that there is a double standard operating but it’s not everybody … but I’d say 60 per cent of men do have it, and begrudgingly cooperate (with their partners’ desires) to get what they want but that’s not good enough,” says Paul.

He believes swinging is best approached as an “add-on” to a healthy sex life. “A lot of couples who have open relationships (who swing separately within and outside the scene), never seem really close.” There are exceptions but to his mind, open relationships are generally a “recipe for disaster”.

Paul thinks people need to be more honest about their sexuality. “Monogamy is something that nobody really wants, deep down inside. I think what people want is a monogamous partner (someone to come home to) … My own view is that monogamy wears a bit thin, for women too.”

Are you a swinger? Have you ever swung?  And let’s play pretend. If you were FORCED to swing (you know, if it was say compulsory like voting), who would you swing with? Your best couple friends? Brad and Angelina (we’re playing pretend so go for your life)? Ellen DeGeneres and Portia?

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