Who controls the swinging lifestyle?
I was once asked “Isn’t swinging and the lifestyle demeaning to women?” I thought the implication of the question was demeaning. Women have no say about sex? Do they believe that swinging was for sex-crazed men who view women as some sort of sex object? Do they think because men are able to talk about their libido and express their sexual desires that women are repressed? That is the extreme opposite from the truth.
Society has tragically shamed women into bottling up their sexual desires and fantasies. Terms like “sluts” “tramps” trollups” “easy” “whore” have all been created just to make ladies feel horrible about their sexual selves. While at the same time society applauds overly sexual men as “studs” “players” “real men.” Our society has a sexual double standard and THAT is what is demeaning to women. The swinging Lifestyle promotes gender equality and even tips the playing field (sports analogy) in favor of the ladies.
Women run the Lifestyle because the Lifestyle empowers women. Swinging for couples is a partnership and a team effort. Many times it is the man who initiates the first foray into swinging but it is usually the ladies who keep them there. It is women who make the ultimate decisions; who we play with, how the play will go and even where the play will happen. Women are the ones who close the deal. A friend once stated it this way, “I believe a more accurate representation would be that: Women are the focus of the Lifestyle and, although they may not run it, they definitely have uncontested “veto power.”
There were days when “wife-swapping” and “key-clubs” were used as adult swinging events. These were demeaning to women because men made the calls. Wife swapping sounds like you are a commodity, and you will seldom hear experienced swingers use such an ugly term. Key clubs was where the men placed their car keys in a bowl and at the end of the night the lady picked the keys and played with the owner of those keys.(Just a side note of interest: the next time you watch the “Grinch Stole Christmas”, watch the Who’s Christmas party. As every Who entered the party they placed their keys in a jar.)
Why does it seem that ladies run the lifestyle? One response was “Because everyone wants to fuck the ladies!” Another response was, “She who has the pussy makes the rules.”
What other reason might there be? One reason is the mere size of men makes them more intimidating than women. Women are less intimidating therefore more comfortable to be around. If the ladies are controlling the decision, things are softer, more comfortable.
Also men have had years and years of a bad reputation to overcome. They have been the ones who initiate sex, even sometimes take it. So with women “in charge” there is an atmosphere of respect, gentleness and patience.
My personal view is that swinging and the lifestyle is about female sexuality. At a vanilla club, a local bar or college frat party the men may be more the aggressors, but what I have found is that at lifestyle functions it is often the women that are the aggressive ones and at times are anything but gentle in the process. I think that can be good as well as bad. While I think it is great that there is a venue where women can express their sexuality in a safe and accepting environment I also believe that just because someone has boobs that does not give them license for rude or bad behavior.
The second theory is that a majority of women in the Lifestyle are bi-sexual. We can have plenty of fun without any men around at all. So the men in the Lifestyle are extremely grateful that the girls even want them to be involved. At a swinger seminar I was asked, "Are all women in the Lifestyle bisexual?" Not all women in the Lifestyle are bisexual or bi-curious, but the majority of them are. In fact, a woman’s bisexuality, or bi-curiosity is one of the most common reasons that couples get involved in the Lifestyle to begin with.
My story: My husband and I were sitting around just talking about stuff and I mentioned in a still small voice, about a girlfriend and I being curious about being together. Well, my husband was on a mission! He was going to find me a girl friend. Some of the avenues we tried did not feel comfortable and some were too scary. When we found Rocky Mountain Connections (the club we used to own), we found what I was looking for. There are many ladies who enjoy sexual play with other ladies and it is fun, safe and has helped me grow sexually.
“I think it’s a process. The ladies make the ultimate decision but the guys are the ones on average who show them the profiles and the recommendations because they are online the most. I think it is a good process that has worked well.” Lynn
My perception of on line swinging sites is that men are on more often then ladies. They check out the profiles maybe even initiate the first contact then say “hey honey, check this out.” One of the things that really attracted me to the Lifestyle was the respect and openness given to women exploring their sexuality.
To sum it up, a friend stated, “I don't think demanding a respectful environment is at all the same thing as "running" something. And I find it odd that when women have a strong voice in a partnership, it is then viewed as being "run" by those women.”
The Lifestyle is not run by anyone, men or women. We all have power to say "No". Granted, more men are willing to say "Yes" than women as part of our greater culture, but that does not give power to a gender.
PS: My experience has been that men in the lifestyle are polite, patient, respectful, and most of all grateful that they have a woman who is open-minded enough to want to experience this with him. Lifestyle men are more comfortable and I give them my applause. Men who are bossy, aggressive, disrespectful or otherwise inappropriate do not last long in the Lifestyle. In the case of most Lifestyle parties, clubs or events, a couple with a disrespectful male will be immediately expelled and never allowed back… and news of rowdy male behavior travels fast. Don’t you forget it!