If I’m going to be honest, I’m a curious girl. I’m curious about sex- this primal need most of us have. Granted, my curiosity has led me down countless rabbit holes, one of which is swinging. I learnt about swinging when I’d just gotten to university. I admit, I was still untouched, a virgin by all standards, but I would listen, wide-eyed, mind racing as my friends and classmates talked about their wild sexual experiences.
I always wondered how it would feel if I had a partner willing to explore their sexuality with me ethically. While I haven’t been that lucky, my curiosity hasn’t fizzled out, and this article is a by-product of cruising the web and living vicariously through the lives of others. If you’re curious like me and have always wanted to find out more about the sex life of swingers, this is your chance to learn a little more!
What is Swinging?
Ask anyone about swinging, and their thoughts automatically flash back to the sex parties of the 60s and 70s. But there’s more to swinging than exchanging sexual partners. Swinging, also known as “the lifestyle,” is a form of ethical non-monogamy.
We say ethical non-monogamy because both partners have to consent to the non-monogamous relationship with a set of rules they abide by to keep their primary relationship healthy. Swinging typically involves both partners exchanging or swapping partners with others or single people. While most people feel that swinging is reserved for heterosexual married couples, anyone can be a swinger, including:
- Those in a committed relationship
- People in the LGBTQ community
- Those who are open to sexual activity with others
- Those who are looking to spice up their sexual experiences with their partner
What Happens During Swinging?
Uhm…sex? And anything else you and your partner give consent to. Some partners might want to have “same room” sex. This is where all the activities they engage in happen in the same room. I know, you probably think that’s a bit weird, right?
Some partners want to experience the same thing their partners are doing or enjoying. For some, sharing the same room can be a way to provide security that their partner is doing what they said they would within the boundaries of the rules they set. For others, it’s simply a turn-on. Even so, not all swingers want to be in the same room with their partners, so they enjoy experiences in separate rooms.
Here’s the thing, though. Being in separate rooms doesn’t mean there’s no element of getting turned on by what your partner is possibly doing. Being in different rooms adds more perspective to the imagination!
The Different Levels of Swinging
One of the most interesting things I’ve learnt about swapping is that there are levels to it. I mean, it’s not like you and your partner agree to swap, and that’s it. There are rules to abide by, and you must stay within those boundaries if your primary relationship means anything to you.
The first level is a “soft swap”:
Sexual activities, including oral sex. There’s no penetration taking place during a soft swap.
The second level is a “hard swap”:
Everything you would do in a soft swap, including actual sexual intercourse, depending on your preferences. Usually, if you are a beginner, you would start with a soft swap to test the waters, but others prefer reserving intercourse for their primary or romantic partners. Some people choose the level they choose to partake in depending on different concerns, such as the risk of pregnancy, STIs, and other concerns.
While most people think swingers and polyamorous people are the same, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Swingers can only be in one committed romantic relationship at one time, unlike polyamorous people. Swingers are romantically and emotionally exclusive to their primary partner even though they might want to indulge in some sexual activity with others once or twice a month.
Note: You might be interested in our blog “Things to know about Polyamorous Relationships”.
While some couples can and do use swinging to spice up their sex lives, it’s important to note that it isn’t for everyone. If there are trust issues in the relationship, it would be best to work on that before you choose to swing. That being said, swinging isn’t something you indulge in without a plan. You and your partner have to get consent from each other and respect the rules you come up with.
Note: You might be interested in our blog “What is sexual consent”.
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