As I think about the person that I've been, the person that I am, and the person that I am continuing to evolve into, I realize I owe a lot to swinging. I'm fitter, happier, more well-rounded in my interests and companions, and I own a lot more lingerie. Most importantly, however, I have a lot more confidence.
First, I'm much more confident when talking to other people. Before swinging, I rarely had to talk to strangers. Occasionally I'd chat with someone in the grocery store, or perhaps make small talk with a co-worker from another part of my company, but it certainly wasn't a weekly occurrence. Now, I talk to people all the time – because if you want to meet someone, you need to say hello, and then hopefully engage them in some sort of conversation.
Additionally, talking to people from vastly different ages, backgrounds, professions, and neighborhoods has given me a greater appreciation for the variety of people in this world. It has also eliminated the intimidation I used to feel from people in power. This alone has been invaluable.
I think I first noticed it when I met with the CEO of the company I was interviewing for. In the past I would have been terrified and intimidated by a man with such success. But this time was different. Although I was certainly respectful, I was also comfortable. I felt like I was talking to a person, not someone with the power to hire or fire me. And, to be honest, in the back of my mind I thought “I've flirted with CEOs. You're not that scary”.
Talking to groups of people has become easier for similar reasons. You know that old trick where they tell you to imagine your audience naked? Well it's kinda like that, except that I've actually seen a room full of naked people. Sure – I haven't seen THESE people naked, but one group of naked people is pretty much like the next. Sure, maybe toastmasters would have given me the same confidence, but swinging has been ever so much more fun 🙂
Lastly, I am more confident in my physical appearance. Tyler has always made me feel like the sexiest woman on the planet, both when we were dating and after we were married. But even so, there was always the small amount of self-doubt in me that said “Well sure HE likes you. He married you…he has to say that”. Swinging has made it clear that people other than Tyler find me attractive, flaws and all.
Marilyn and I raise our hands as two of those people other than Tyler who find you attractive! Such a sexy cutie!
Interesting. Ms Swap Fu told me about a month ago that she too is more confident among "powerful" men these days and she said it directly related to our experiences swinging. She sees these men as people she can approach more readily because she is more in touch with the universality of their sexual desire and the power she has in that context. It's awesome!
I have noticed something different in myself, however. While I've always been fairly confident, since we've started going to swinger clubs, I have found myself evaluating many more people I meet in day-to-day life as potential sex partners. This is due to the variety of people we have met at the clubs. You almost inevitably conclude that anyone can be a swinger, therefore everyone is. lol. This has made me hestitant to interact with people until after I've made that determination. I don't know… I'm not less confident, just hesitant. Good topic, Holly.
Holly, I second your sentiment. Being in an open relationship allows me to fully live…to experience sparks where there are sparks and wear my erotic energy on my sleeve (or corset for that matter)! I am thrilled to hear your experience. Enjoy!
We were just talking about this last night and I can’t agree more. We went out in a vanilla party last night and found ourselves much more comfortable as a whole. I continue to be amazed by this journey.
I must admit I feel very much the same way. Being in the lifestyle has finally convinced me that I AM attractive and desirable, and not just because my husband said so. He was delusional don’t you know? 🙂
I’ve always been a little shy and have found talking to
people to be somewhat of a chore. I used to dread the idea of being alone with
strangers and having to make small talk. After becoming a swinger, I’ve found
all that much easier. I’m much more comfortable around people today. For some
reason I still don’t like vanilla parties though. I can talk to people at a
swingers’ event with no problem, but if I don’t know anyone at a vanilla party
I’m still miserable.
“Lastly, I am more confident in my physical appearance. Tyler has always made me feel like the sexiest woman on the planet, both when we were dating and after we were married. But even so, there was always the small amount of self-doubt in me that said “Well sure HE likes you. He married you…he has to say that”. Swinging has made it clear that people other than Tyler find me attractive, flaws and all.” Oh so true!
In my case it’s a bit more personal and intimate. I’ve always been a bit of an exhibitionist, but after giving birth to two larger than average babies vaginally and then breastfed both, I had become a little bit paranoid about my body. I hated the stretch marks, and as for my vulva…..that was just ghastly in my eyes.
When my husband and i first talked about swinging, I found the idea excited me but I dreaded letting someone other than Phil (hubby) see my bits. But once we met our first couple, I realised that not only was I not so ugly “down there”, people’s physical flaws are not really an issue.
Now I’m 54, on HRT and back to my exhibitionist self! Life’s great. But we don’t swing quite so much now, there is a psychological limit to just how many strangers one is willing to get intimate with once we get past 50!!