A Polyamorous Woman at a Swinger Party

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A Polyamorous Woman at a Swinger PartyMy name is Zoe Hanis and I am polyamorous.

I was recently invited to a swinger party. I am seriously considering going. Much more so than I might have been even six months ago, when the idea of swinging conjured thoughts of sex with anonymous strangers and preconceived notions of a “meat-market” where people would only be interested in physical traits or coital skills. The thought of sex used only as a recreational activity, like a pick-up game of basketball, would make me nauseous, bringing back childhood memories of always being the last one to be picked for any team. The uncoordinated geeky girl with the glasses that no one wanted is still a part of me, loathing the thought of more rejection. But I have grown and learned to face my fears.

I am currently dating a gentleman who swings. (henceforth called “Guy”). In fact, it is he who is not only responsible for inviting me to the party, but is hosting it. And he is slowly changing my views about swinging. I am learning that those of us that are ethically non-monogamous, whether swinger or poly, are a lot more alike then I was first led to believe. That while there are still some swingers that do fit into my previous stereotypes, many do not.

From what I have gathered from Guy, swingers (or at least the ones that he plays and talks with) do have a friendship with each other before fucking. (Apparently swingers call sex “fucking” without all the euphemisms that the rest of us are so used to using).
I suppose this would beg the questions of the range of “friendship” on the scale of interpersonal relationships and how deeply one must know someone in order to consider them a “friend”. But the point of the matter is, that it is NOT sex with anonymous strangers.

When Guy originally threw the party idea out there, I was not sure if he expected me to nibble, but I did. Not for the usual reason of me taking up hobbies or interests of the men I was dating, molding myself to what they appeared to want (a habit that I am breaking), but because I am actually curious. Yet the unknown has always frighten me.

We talked a bit about what went on at such parties so I could make a more informed decision. And he pointed out that he would not only be affectionate to the other women there, but would be fucking them. This was not to be some sort of monogamous group sex in which I was his date. I told him that I would give it serious consideration. And I have; getting counsel from those I value most.

My husband of 21 years, was at first surprised that I was interested in going. He, himself, is not interested in anything other than “relationship sex”. And when I tried to explain that friendship was a relationship, I realized that these were not really my friends, but Guy’s. So in essence it would be sex with anonymous strangers. But Hubby encouraged me to go, saying that I was free to leave at any time.

Hubby’s girlfriend seems all in favor of me going. She, personally, could never handle the potential negative emotions of having Hubby fuck other women “in front of her”. But she thinks it would be good for me to quit trying to be what I think other people want me to be and just go explore to find out what I want (or don’t want).

My boyfriend, said that he would not be interested in swinging. That he wanted a “connection” with the people that he had sex with, but he did not seem to be against me going.

I think Guy was surprised about all of the thought that I have been putting into his invitation. And I think he is worried about me being jealous of him being with others, a very valid concern. But I have found that open and honest communication is what allows me to feel secure within a romantic relationship, and as such, be able to share partners. Knowledge is power. Knowing that he probably won’t have sex with me that night does not mean that he does not find me attractive, nor does it mean that he does not want to have a relationship with me. He chooses to spend quality alone time with me, not simply seeing me along with others for a short time at the occasional party.

And as for me having sex with anonymous strangers. I am not sure if I will. But then again, how long is someone really a stranger anyway?

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Zoe first described herself as "bad at monogamy" until about five years ago when she and her husband discovered the term that actually described her: polyamorous. Since then they have opened their family to other partners. Zoe is currently juggling relationships with her husband, their two kids, her husband's girlfriend, and a slew of friends/loves that she calls her tribal poly family. She can be reached on facebook or on twitter @ZoeHanis

2 Comments

  1. Avatar
    Silenus Zarkoff on

    Swing parties can offer a lot more than just a chance to bang someone you’ve never bet before. Here are some examples from my own experience:

    1. Soft swinging. Fondle, massage, maybe masturbate half of another couple, then both couples have intercourse with their partners, if they like. This provides sensual touch and visual excitement with a high level of safety. It is a good way for couples to enjoy variety and still reinforce their bonding.

    2. Just watching. A couple can make love in a highly sexually charged environment, with plenty of eye candy, but not physically interact.

    3. Go to a swing party with your polyamorous pod or network. Do what you normally do, have a great time, and see who is attracted to the way you present yourselves. I’ve made several long term poly friends that way over the years.

    Keep in mind that while the popular concept of swinging is “sex with Strangers”, in reality that is only the tip of the iceberg. Sure, some swingers pick up strangers at parties or elsewhere, or use contact web sites. But sometimes long term friendships evolve. The attendees at swingers clubs always include newbies, but the majority are usually people who come repeatedly, some over decades. Friendships develop and people start to do activities with each other outside the parties. At the end of the first swing party I ever went to, in 1980, a half dozen guests were sitting around the fireplace planning to pour a concrete drive way for one of them the next day. That didn’t sound like sex with strangers to me.

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