So Naïve! The Couples Quest

I’m sure I have touched on this topic before, but in light of a recent conversation on the Hunter Gash and Alley Cat show (Which you should check out at GTFO if you’re 18 or older) I feel it deserves another look.  When E and I decided to look for couples to date together, I went into it with rose coloured glasses.  In short, I was optimistic and naive.  I honestly thought that amazing people would attract each other and that finding couples would be easier than finding new singles as a result.  I thought that all you would need to do was vet one person, and then naturally they would bring to the table their equally amazing partner, just as I was doing.  We would all get together for drinks, and laugh, share stories, and sexy times would inevitably be the result.

Yes, I went into this whole thing believing that finding couples would be simple.  I never considered opposites attract.  Nor did I ponder just how one sided many relationships are when it comes to entering into non monogamy.  I foolishly assumed that if two people were ready to head out on a date, that they would have put the same level of work into their relationship that my partner and I had.  That they would be confident (after the nerves of the first meeting wore off), and sure of what they wanted.  Oh, and I thought that as couples this would eliminate all the ghosting, bread-crumbing and they would be serious, AKA not time wasters.  It after all takes work to schedule 4 people, and that investment alone should mean that we are all willing and able.  Hence, when we finally meet, everyone would have the same goal, which is to have fun, and see if we all get along to determine if we would become friends or something more.  Oh my poor little naive and optimistic heart…

I also, very foolishly thought that because I already have a partner, and was not looking for perfection, that the couples we interacted with would be on that same wavelength too.  You know, looking for fun, willing to overlook a thing or two, and just enjoy the experience of meeting new people.  But oh no!  That has not been the case at all.  In fact, just recently I was chatting to a couple that I thought would be a lot of fun, and was just about to start scheduling a meeting between the four of us, when they dropped the bombshell.  They wanted to find a couple to help them raise their family.  I replied that we weren’t quite at that point yet in our lives with family, but why don’t we meet to see if we even click and go from there.  Not only did they not respond but I got deleted and blocked!  I mean I get that we weren’t quite on the same page, however, what’s the harm in meeting or at least getting to know a couple before you start a family with them?

And did I mention that we are looking for a stable couple?  And by stable, I do mean a couple who love each other, and have a good solid foundation.  A couple that leaves the majority of their drama at the door.  Yes, we all have issues in our primary relationships, but we have come across two couples in particular who used opening up to try and save their troubled relationships.  And guess what, it didn’t work!  And it really sucked for us, as the couple coming into it.  For you see, I begin to care about the people I’m dating, and then when the relationship deteriorates I get upset too, and there are tears and then pretty much everyone breaks up!  It’s a crappy feeling!

So now I go into these first meetings a little guarded and I make a point of asking how long the couple has been together to potentially avoid that particular pain.  And while I can weed out the FWB or new partners very quickly it’s still time consuming business.  I tend to gravitate towards couples who have been together 5 plus years.  I find couples who are in love and stable to be much more attractive than just a couple of hot FWB who only have amazing sex together and no real intimacy.  Why?  Because I am not looking for one time hookups.  Scheduling is tough.  My life is very busy.  Finding partners who are in the same boat makes life much more relaxed and easy going, as you can accept everyone’s priorities and really value the moments the four get together.  For me, it is more intimate and special.

I hope in the next few years, I can lower my guard a little and go with the flow again.  But right now I feel stuck in this weird zone of too many red flags from everyone I talk to.  And I suppose part of the reason is in that open relationships, swinging, etc are becoming a little less taboo.  So the pool is getting a little fuller around the edges.  Many couples are dipping a toe in here and there.  Or testing the water, so to speak.  While exciting, it’s a little tricky when your ready to start swimming laps, and leave the water wings behind.  But hey, at least a few of those toe dippers will stick around to experience the full pool soon right?

If you liked this post, and want to see or read more, please consider following me on twitter or subscribing to my Patreon page.

Catching the Feels

This is a term that I see time and time again within the swinging community and if this is your first time hearing it, no, it is not something that swingers use in a positive light.  This is the term that really separates swingers from the rest of the non-monogamous spectrum.  Because one of the main attractions to partner swapping and sharing is the ability to isolate sex from emotions.  You in essence can sleep with a multitude of people, get to know them, be social and do all these exciting and amazing things in the bedroom, but remain emotionally monogamous with your spouse.  For you see, if you develop any sort of feelings you must stop seeing these outside partners immediately.  That is a breach of trust within your relationship and basically violating the golden swinger rule; Thou shalt not catch the feels!

I hear this term frequently, within forums and any discussion about how to approach swinging for the first time, especially from the older generations.  These couples have negotiated the ideal that they can have sex outside their relationship with the clear understanding that it is only sex.  They can play together multiple times with the same couple, sometimes even for years at a time but there is no emotional bond beyond the sex and friendship.  There is a line strongly drawn in the sand here.  Your emotional connection is reserved for your spouse/partner and only for them.  With the acknowledgement that sex with other people is a lot of fun and encouraged so by all means embrace the physical.  But if you blur those two ideals, then your very relationship could be in jeopardy and your swingers card is basically revoked.

Ok, I’m over stepping a wee bit on the that last one, because there isn’t actually a swingers card, although that would be really fun.  A card where you have to basically sign that you agree to consent, take responsibility for your own sexual safety and you agree to abide by the house rules, whatever those may be.  But I have digressed there.  Let’s get back on track, those icky feelings.

I have explored so many wondrous relationship norms on the non monogamous spectrum, and if you’re a regular reader you know that I struggle with rules.  I struggle with being told that any relationship I embark on has limitations.  I am so much more flexible and open minded about these things.  I want to be able to explore without limits, other than safe sex of course.  So, in essence I feel like I am living a taboo within a taboo.  A non-monogamous open mindedness for relationships within the parameters of swinging or at times vice versa.  It’s a strange feeling.

If you read my post Next Generation Swingers, you may have noticed that I see a whole new generation of swingers entering into the lifestyle and club scene.  And with that I see the potential to re-imagine or re-invent the term swinging, because the reality is it is already happening with the 20 somethings whether we like it or not.  They are groups of friends who go to clubs, host parties and have a much less restrained view on swingers and relationships.  It’s a new fresh community, which of course will create all new issues.  And the main one that I see, and dread being a part of, is the word drama.  When you eliminate relationships from forming beyond sexual contact with other couples, you do lessen the public drama.  Realistically there is still drama going on behind closed doors, and in private bathroom stalls (we’ve all been witness to those sobbing sounds).  But it is removed from clubs almost immediately, because bad vibes kill boners, it’s a fact.

So, with the influx of the young, and more relationship flexible people we are opening up to more drama.  Because relationships are very, VERY complicated.  So maybe that’s what the earliest swingers had in mind with the whole keep feelings out of swinging mantra.  And I have to admit, that they also created a very enticing idea of maintaining a constant adrenaline high of butterflies with new partners without ever having the heartache or breakup in the end.  But truly, don’t you think having the lows makes the highs so much more meaningful and valuable?  I know the argument that the lows are for marriage and that swinging is just a bonus for many.  So then my full disclosure here, is that I cannot separate sex from feelings if I want to get off in a way that really makes my knees shake, and nor would I want to learn how.  I adore the intensity of sex with people I care deeply about, so much more than just the fleeting excitement of newness.  The emotional connection has a staying power with me and that is where my physical attraction comes from.  So here I sit, a swinger outlier, yet again.  But I ask you, is there a single swinger out there who hasn’t yet discovered that you cannot ride the highs forever, no matter how much you try to avoid catching the feels?  Is this whole idea of sex without feelings simply a myth, an ideal that can never actually be achieved in the long term?  I would love to hear your thoughts…

 

 If you liked this post, please consider subscribing to my Patreon page!

 

Is it OK to Flirt When You’re Married?

One of the social constraints that monogamy places on a relationship is the notion that once you are married any sort of flirting is suddenly taboo.  That you must close off your sexual identity to everyone except your life partner.  I can see the beauty and sanctity in the ideology behind this thinking, and more I used to subscribe wholeheartedly to it.  You found your soul mate, and all your love should be saved for them.  On paper, it’s sweet, endearing and a fantasy that many of us longingly thought about in our youth.  But, is this practical, real world behavior?  Does this actually make the relationship healthier, and stronger or does it instead plant a seed of jealousy and possessiveness?

Depending on if you are a monogamous or a non-monogamous reader your relationship biases are going to play a major role in answering that question.  The beauty and trust in knowing your partner will never flirt with another human could be an integral part of why you got married.  That idea that you never have to worry, can be incredibly comforting and allow you to explore many other facets of your relationship.  Pair bonding is an incredible experience and not something I want to diminish the importance of as it’s critical in all partnerships.  I fondly remember how incredible it was for me, to tell people, that my first boyfriend and I were each others firsts and only sexual partners (well until our first breakup around year 6 anyways).  We were fully committed to each other in every single aspect of our lives.  And that was a really significant factor in us staying together for 9 years or so.  It gave us something extra to stay together for, something meaningful and gave our relationship an almost added importance.  Additionally, in the no flirting when married school of thought, I must add that many people hate dating and flirting, so they were all too happy to give that all up with marriage and not think about it again.

Now let’s talk briefly about the other side of the issue, the married people who think it is OK to still flirt.  And there are tonnes of us out there, many who would identify as monogamous too.  These are the people, who like me, absolutely love to flirt.  To push the envelope of friendship just slightly past the normal everyday pleasantries.  I for one, see, just how freeing and liberating it is to flirt.  How much a part of my sexuality comes alive when I get to talk, and be playful with new people.  It not only invigorates me, it also revitalizes my relationship with my partner.  Any swinger will tell you that often, they have the hottest sex with their partner when they come home from the club or a date.  So, the idea of flirting actually strengthens many relationships in direct conjunction with a solid foundation.  Having been in long term relationship on both sides of the spectrum I believe flirting, even when married is a true sign of a relationship that trusts, and ultimately has their shit together.

But the reality is that, what I think doesn’t matter.  What really matters is what we as a society publicly do or say.  And that is where I think the meat and potatoes really are because as much as you may agree with me in your head, what you support publicly is what gets noticed.  Take a fellow blogger, who shared her experiences with “bigger than friendship” feelings for a married man.  The public outcry from her followers, on Twitter, was predictably close minded.  The shame, finger wagging and instant judgement that she crossed lines by even talking to this guy, because he was… wait for it… married, was quick and very decisive.  And further that he was in a moral obligation to never have a female friend outside of his marriage, period.  Of course, there were a few open-minded comments speckled in, but until she came out with the piece called Aftermath the critics were outraged.  Was she and the married man engaged in some form of flirtation, how scandalous!  But was it harmless?  Well that depends on your prerogative and what you have negotiated as your own personal marriage terms and boundaries or your base belief system.  Wait scratch that… it actually has nothing to do with anyone but him, his wife and Lucy.

See the thing of it is, us non-monogamous folks, we talk about these things like is flirting ok when we get married.  There are no assumptions made in a healthy and communicative partnership.  We negotiate and re-negotiate our wants, needs and our boundaries.  And what’s more, we implicitly understand that all the people we interact with in the community, are doing the same.  So, we don’t make assumptions for their relationship boundaries either. We ask, we talk, we respect what works for them.  The monogamous world, doesn’t do this.  Instead there are harsh guidelines that public opinion dictates as a result of whomever speaks loudest or often who presents an argument that involves the most public shame, and that becomes the standard.  Protect the sanctity of marriage even though we don’t talk about what that actually means!  Nowhere did anyone ask or suggest, that Lucy, and the married man have a discussion about their friendship boundaries or if that that worked with the wife.  Instead, Lucy, developed feelings, understood that having feelings for a married man was wrong, shameful and ended things.

But what if there was another option?  What if it was permissible to flirt in the married couple’s relationship?  And further what if as a standard for monogamy the conversation about what cheating actually entails occurs?  What if public opinion did not dictate relationship norms, and instead we embraced the idea that each partnership is unique, respected and we went on with our merry little lives?  What if, it is OK to flirt when you’re married?

Curious about Lucy’s story?  I highly recommend you giving this 3 part blog post a read, not only because @LucyGoesDating said I could share!  But also because her blog is super fun to read, and so completely opposite from mine that I adore it. So here is part 1 to get you started, Married Man Part 1.

*** If this piece got you thinking, or you want to support it, or even just continue with the discussion (because, I didn’t want to make this a two part rant ), I would love for you to join my Patreon community!***

 

The Checklist for Finding the Perfect Male to Procreate With

Please note that this piece is satirical in nature, created in direct response to a repulsive list making it’s way around the interweb with the intent of giving men a list of rules to find the perfect wife.

In the beginning women were worshiped and revered for being the true Goddesses of society and their families.  Men were in awe of our sacred and mystical abilities which included the ability to bear children.  We kept the secret behind our fertility and reproductive requirements within out gender for generations.  Men were oblivious to the fact that women had the power to choose a mate, while at the same time, choose a physical partner with which to create new life.  It was our prerogative and right to use men in the manor that suited our companionship needs, our pleasure, and kept us in power for quite some time.  And then men got jealous.  They started asking questions, and getting too wise to the fact that they were bigger and stronger so perhaps they should be the revered sex.  And so one day, one man made the correlation between bedding a woman and a baby appearing 9 months later and suddenly the mysticism behind our great power was gone.

So we relinquished our power, and moved into the background of the historical records.  We began to understand that power can always be taken away and can never be an absolute.  So, we evolved our thinking and evolved to start working towards equality instead.  To finding a way to be valuable to society, without overstepping the male leadership, which they were enjoying far too much.  To suit this ultimate goal and allow us time to formulate a real plan, we created busy work for the men.  Encouraged them to go to war, start industry and develop new technologies.  All were done with the sole purpose of giving us some breathing space so we could sort out the wants and need necessary to co -exist with equality among the sexes.  And ultimately unify our gender’s, work together and not against.

But in order to do this effectively we needed to come up with ways to ensure our offspring were of the best possible breading.  We needed to regain the power of our procreation first and foremost allowing us the ability to choose that most perfect mate.  As the sugar and spice of humanity we created a list to help us become more picky and choosy in selecting these husbands and partners.  As any woman knows, the toll that bearing children takes on our bodies alone is enough to warrant this very important checklist.

  • First, a man’s height is very important, but if that is lacking he better make up for it with strength.  A man must be able to sweep you off your feet, both literally and figuratively.  The first true test of his procreative prowess will be in carrying you across the threshold on your wedding night.  He shall not gasp, pant or struggle as he picks you up.  Anything less than majestic beauty as he lifts you up, walks forward and gingerly places you on the bed it unacceptable. 
  • Next the eyes.  When you look into a man’s eyes you must see right back into your soul, with a hint of mystery.  You want eyes that you can stare into for hours during the most loving and tender moments.  But stay clear of a man whose eye has no sparkle or shine.  These are the men with much to hide, and are too focused on themselves, for it will bring much hardship to your offspring.
  • Now look at his ears and the nose.  If they are already large early in life, remember that the ancient Chinese believed that big ears and noses were a sign of wisdom and luck.  He needs both to ensure the future of our species.  But remember, only one of the spouses requires the luck gene, so if you’re the one with the larger orifices, choose someone a little under proportioned.
  • And here we rapidly shift to his physical manhood, the penis.  His dick should never frighten you, be it with python like size, girth or with a hairy untamed mess.  His penis should respect that you are the boss, and not it.  And should react with erect confidence whenever you approach.  If this happens, feel free to reward it with kisses and licks, encouraging continuation of good behaviour and pleasing appearance.
  • When it comes to the act of sexual intercourse.  The perfect mate will never allow himself to orgasm before ensuring that you, his wife or partner are completely satisfied.  He will please you whenever you wish him to, and will always show up for sex clean, able and without socks.  If any of these are missing, you simply say no, and go and grab your favorite toy as there is no need for you to be punished for his bad behaviour.  And when he has proven his worthiness, you may of course choose to procreate as is your Goddess like right!  The ultimate praise for a job very well done!
  • And just one more thing to keep in mind, this man must be a perfect blend of tenderness and manliness.  For example if your man cannot take down a wild animal with his bare hands for dinner and then present it to with wine and candles, then, you must send him packing before making a baby.  How else can you ensure that you, and your offspring will survive the zombie apocalypse, I mean the coming of equality, if he cannot even take down a bear by brute force alone and then rub your tired feet at the end of the day?  This is the ultimate showing of bravery, and love.  A true man, fit to procreate with you.

 

 

So share this, with every woman, to remind her the we still have the power to choose.  We have the will to ensure equality.  And ultimately we have complete control of our bodies, procreation and the absolute voice to say NO.

Swingers Rules and Why I am an Outlier Part I

In general, social groups are comprised of like minded individuals who come together for a commonality.  There are those who create a generalized norm, follow the mean, and then we have the outliers.  In the world of non-monogamy I have often felt like the later.  Part of the reason of course is that I don’t particularly like rules or being told what to do, and the other part is that I constantly evolve my thinking based on new experiences and education.  When it comes to the term swinger, I feel more like an outsider than in any other branch.  And yet, I attend swingers parties once a month, frequent clubs, whereby I have an incredible time, and it should be said, have met the most like minded connections.  However this may be an anomaly as I will soon point out due to the strict nature of the puritan swinger.

The following list of rules, is based on my own experiences, and those of current online forums.  This is not a complete list of course, simply the ones that best express my views on feeling like an outlier.
1)Never make swingers out of friends.  

2)If you develop feelings for any of your play partners you must end things immediately. 

3)Leave all drama at the door.

4)Do not ever gossip about other swingers.

Rules are made to protect the society you are a part of, and swinging is no exception.  There is a lot going on so hard and fast rules do more good than harm or do they.  I am beginning to think that these rules were designed for a generation with whom have had their day in the sun and have actually run their course.  A generation that was used to hiding, and keeping their sexual exploration in complete isolation of their day to day lives.  Or had simply no network of support with which to embrace a swinging sexuality and a normal 9 – 5.  We call it the swinging 60’s in retrospect, and yet, very few were public about their lifestyle.  We assume “everyone did it” and yet we don’t know anyone who actually is brave enough to admit it.

Let’s assess these rules in reverse order for a little fun.  Do not gossip about other swingers is fairly straight forward and seems reasonable.  However if perchance you run into a couple who is belligerent or abusive towards you or your partner, guess what?  You get shunned if you say anything or tell anyone.  Why?  Because anonymity is more paramount than safety.  Yes, you heard right.  If anything goes amuck your responsibility is to keep your mouth shut and quietly move onto someone else.  I think we can all agree that mindset needs to change.  We should be mature enough to make our own decisions based on all the information given to us.  To give people chances where due, and to say no, whenever we feel that someone crossed a line.  There are so many non-monogamous folks out there now, that this fear you will have no one to play with ever, should not take priority over warning your partners of someone who in your opinion is toxic.  While the word gossip itself is bad, in umbrellas every single negative word you may voice over someone else in your community.  We need to extend love and support if someone has been wronged and not ostracize as is the current model.

Next up, leave all drama at the door.  Our members only house party has this rule.  And within a house party, or club setting I have absolutely no issues with it.  However this rule extends far beyond the social setting.  If let’s say a couple is having issue with jealousy or any other emotion that may hinder their libido the first thing a swinger will say is  “this is a drama free environment, so clearly you are not ready to swing if you cannot deal with this issue”.  In my world, I strive to surround myself with a loving and supportive network.  A place where I can discuss my issues, or tribulations within the lifestyle, and not have to hide it for fear of breaking the rules.  While drama is not much fun in a public setting, why should couples have to put everything on hold and recluse until they figure things out?  With all these amazing, well put together couples, you would think we would be more open to helping and sharing our successes rather than shutting out those that make poke holes in our obvious facade.

On a side note, it is interesting to me, that our (being swingers) resources are long lists of “read my mistakes and learn so you don’t have to”.  Rather than providing help, advice and compassion to get over the rough stuff we dismiss the opportunity to share strengths alongside weaknesses.  The reality of a drama free rule is simply that we are free of drama in the here and now, in the current moment and that seems to be all that is necessary to engage in group or partnered sex.  And that seeking advice or help is dismissed as you are simply not in the right head space or emotional state to swing. Obviously I think we can do better.

 So with those first two (or last two as it were) addressed please stay tuned for part II.