Getting Off The Merry-Go-Round: Playing With The Swing Set

DISCLAIMER:  This post has been written with positive intentions, for the purpose of sharing information.  It was not written to educate, infuriate, irritate, or otherwise annoy.  I am not an expert, and do not pretend to be.

These are real questions (LOVE questions!) I received over the course of an extended email exchange a couple months ago with a member of my bloggy audience, and my answers are based on my own experiences within the construct of my own marital relationship.

Your own experiences and your own relationship(s) are likely vastly different than mine.  Feel free to share your insights in the comments section of this blog post and/or on your own blog.

Please adhere to The Rules when commenting, and give everyone the respect they deserve.

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A Feverish, Fuckerish Q & A:  SWING(ING) CLUBS (no, not the golf variety)

Are the clubs at somebody’s home or are they downtown in the business district with a big sign that reads “SWING CLUB”?

Okay, I’ll admit I sort of snort-laughed at that question.  *:P tongue

House parties are completely different, so for now I’ll just talk about the clubs.

I’m sure there are a variety of club environments and atmospheres, so I can’t definitively state that there are no neon signs.  However, in my experience, clubs are members-only and they are discreet.  Just as there are misconceptions, stigmas, and stereotypes applied to members of the GLBTIQ communities, there are an abundance of ’70s-style misconceptions about swinging.  Perhaps that is why, from what I’ve seen, most people are not ‘out’ about being polyamorous or about swinging.  Hence, there is a hold-harmless agreement and legal paperwork required before one can become a club member.  And nobody plays at the clubs I attend unless they *are* a member.

The clubs we’ve visited in our area are set up as ‘Adult Recreational Clubs’; there is a facility (which hosts a variety of everyday functions, from weddings to corporate retreats), and there is a club that uses the facility.

The party I blogged about in December was hosted *by* the club, *at* the facility.  The facility itself was a large ranch-style house with two cinder-block outbuildings, and indoor pool and hot tub, and a dance area, all set on 100 acres of land.  We had to email with our request to attend before we were given any location information, and once we arrived at the party, we had to pay our fees before we could get past the front door.

At the prominent clubs in our area, there is a membership fee (remember, it’s a members-only type thing) plus a party fee.  Sometimes clubs have bi-annual or yearly dues as well.  Think of it this way:  When you join a gym, you pay a ‘membership fee’ up front, then you pay monthly dues, and then you pay extra for step aerobics classes or basketball leagues, right?  Same concept.  Except you pay a ‘cover charge’ for each party instead of a ‘seat fee’ for a spinning class.

You say the clubs offer a safe, sane, sober environment so, there is no liquor?

It varies.  The Mister doesn’t drink at all, and I don’t drink when I’m playing.  It’s important to me that all parties are fully cognizant of their decisions and are 100% mentally engaged.  Drunks are poor decision makers.  And, in my opinion, if you need mood-altering substances to want to play with me, you don’t deserve to play with me.  Thanks, but no thanks, if you know what I mean.  So the event *we* attended was dry.

Other clubs have different rules.  Alcohol consumption is somewhat discouraged in reputable places though, and *if* alcohol is allowed, it’s BYO and there’s a cut-off time, after which no alcohol can be consumed (10:00pm-ish).  I imagine that’s because (1) they are concerned for the comfort and safety of their members, and (2) they would be subject to all kinds of legal ramifications otherwise.

Whose idea was it to go to a swing club?  Did You enjoy it the first time?

It was a mutual decision, and it was something we’d talked about for a long time.  Our previous swing experiences had been private events.  While exploring our local clubs recently, we *visited* two, but only *attended a party* (read: played) at one (which is where I made friends with Sybian), and yes, I definitely enjoyed it.  We’ll likely be going back to that club again in the future.

It should be noted that we researched our options carefully ahead of time (there’s tons of info online), we talked about various possible scenarios ahead of time (what if, what if, what if…okay, then what…), we set up mutually agreed-upon boundaries ahead of time, we stuck to those boundaries and maintained open communication with each other the entire time we were playing, and our focus was first and foremost on one another throughout the whole process.

I’m sure at the clubs, everybody must practice safe sex. 

Safe sex is encouraged but not demanded.  Latex condoms and lube are generally available in every room, and the use of towels/pads is encouraged, particularly for women who squirt or men who are heavy ejaculators.  I used a condom (my own; I’m allergic to latex) on the Sybian; I did not (nor do I ever) use a condom with my husband.

One problem I think I would have is walking in the front door without having a Hard-On…with everything going on…I would probably have a tough time ‘being natural’…It’s probably not cool for guys to walk around at full attention, huh?

As for the ‘hard-on’ issue…  It’s pretty much a NON-issue.  Some people walk around fully nude all night, others wear robes, others remain dressed unless they’re physically involved with somebody at the moment.  When you’re watching, it’s basically expected that you’ll be hard.  Also when you’re fucking.  (Duh!)  But most of the guys I saw who were walking around naked in the common areas (like in the pool area, for instance) either weren’t hard at all or were just at half-mast.  I asked Mr Fever why that was (because of course I’m interested in checking out the equipment!), and he equated it to walking around naked in the men’s locker room at the gym.  You don’t want your junk to accidentally stab anyone in the eye.  Or something.  Shrug.

It must really be something to walk into a place where there are 150 people in different stages of undress.  Some eating dinner in the kitchen, some making love in the corner and one HOT girl moaning and sighing as she is riding the sybian (Awww…  Isn’t that cute?) in another room.  I think it would give me a sensory overload to be in such a sexually charged environment!

You’re absolutely right about the sensory overload.  There’s a fine line between arousing and distracting.  And it’s one thing to be coaxed along in your race to orgasm via aural stimulation (gasps and moans and shudders, oh my!), but it’s quite another for someone to start talking about their long drive home while you’re in the middle of a sex session.  (True story.)  Oy!  And the excessive visual input has the potential to be hugely distracting.  (Think:  SQUIRL!)

There was one point when my husband and I were having sex in the voyeur room, and he was looking everywhere *but* at me, which really wasn’t working for me at all.  It was an easy fix for us; I said, “I need you to pay attention to me right now, babe,” and he knew exactly what I meant by that.  His focus immediately snapped back to me and he gave me the connection I was craving.  But I can easily see how what was a small hiccup for us could be relationship-threatening situation for someone else.  Overstimulation can create a disconnect between couples in that situation.


I enjoy both voyeurism and exhibitionism, but my stronger tendency is to be an exhibitionist.  When other people are watching me ~ watching me masturbate, watching me deep throat a cock, watching me ride a Sybian, watching my pussy get pounded ~ I’m able to totally focus on what I’m doing, but at the same time, I experience a heightened awareness from knowing that I’m on display.  It’s like I absorb all the energy being focused on me via other people’s stares, and I convert that energy into orgasm.  It’s an incredible turn-on.

…having an open marriage can actually make your marriage stronger…

Not true.  In our case, having a strong marriage is what has made opening up a possibility.  Exploring sexual relationships with other people (secondary partners) has enhanced our appreciation for one another.  Totally different concept.

Believe me, if the Mister had come to me and, completely out of the blue, announced, “I want to start fucking other women, starting today!”, I’d have freaked.  Ack!  Gah!  Wha…?!?!  I mean, I’m right here, right?

So, no.  It starts with the relationship.  We’re life partners and we’re friends.  There are fantasies we wanted to make reality, and having other partners has been on the table since day one.  (Literally.  I was dating two men when he first met me, so other lovers hasn’t just been a what if… kind of possibility; it’s something we experienced in our relationship as we were building it.)  So when we decided to explore swing, we talked about it (read: talked it TO DEATH) and agreed on our plan(s) of action(s), and have made our adjustments as we’ve gone along.

I’m glad to hear that it brings the two of you closer together after a good night at the club.  I have also heard it can break up a marriage too. Personally, I think it would make a marriage stronger by opening up avenues of communication, just like You two are doing.

You’ve heard the whole ‘swing thing’ can break up a marriage, and I’ll be honest:  You’ve heard correctly.  The thing is, a lot of couples try opening up their marriage as a way to save their marriage.  The root problem(s) is/are inside the marriage relationship itself, so having sex with other people as a way to solve those problems makes about as much sense as “Well, we’re on the brink of divorce, sooo…  Let’s have a baby to save our marriage!”  Head-Desk-THUNK.

My husband and I have a rule that nothing and no one can interfere with our dynamic.  He’s my number one; I’m his.  I’m lucky in that the man I married is very much my friend.  We fit together really well as life partners.  So we talk a lot and fantasize out loud and when we act on something (or someone) it’s by mutual agreement, and becoming involved with another person is never an attempt to replace one another.  Rather, those outside relationships enhance our own dynamic.  (Think: Compersion)

And then, of course, there are the practical considerations:  One cock alone cannot perform double penetration.  *;) winking

The man says, “I want to become a swinger!” because it means SEXSEXSEX:

Think with your big head, please.

In my experience, men tend to think, “Woo-hoo! More pussy for me!”, but cannot handle it when the situation is reversed. It’s a double standard, and believe me: I’ve seen the fallout, and it’s UGLY.

So think of it this way:  If your S.O. came to you and said, “I want to have sex with other men and also continue having sex with you,” how would you react?  Would you be hurt?  Jealous?

What if you were committed?  Living together?  Married?  Engaged to be married?

Would you wonder why?  Would you feel inadequate?  Humiliated?  Would you want to screen the other guys?  Would you want to watch?

What if she wanted you both at the same time?  What if his cock was bigger than yours?  What if he got a different/bigger/louder/stronger response from her than you do?

Things to think about.  And talk about.  At length.  Ahead of time.

31 thoughts on “Getting Off The Merry-Go-Round: Playing With The Swing Set

  1. Dane the Barbarian

    This is a terrific summary of swing clubs. A great service to those who are thinking about it.
    I particularly like your part on the need for a strong marriage FIRST.
    I’ll put a link to it on my Tumblr blog.
    There must be some regional variation though. I’ve never been to a swing club that ended BYOB alcohol consumption at a certain time.

    1. Mrs Fever Post author

      Thank you. 🙂 I’m glad it came across in the spirit in which it was intended.

      I’m certain you are right about the existence of regional variations, and not only where alcohol consumption is concerned. There are local legalities to take into consideration, as well as personal preferences.

      One common stereotype about swing parties is that they are nothing more than drunken orgies. While puppy piles *do* exist, they are, in our experience, only one of a multitude of possible activities. And we choose to play sober.

  2. NormalDeviations

    Finally. Sigh.

    In my experience, men tend to think, “Woo-hoo! More pussy for me!”, but cannot handle it when the situation is reversed. It’s a double standard, and believe me: I’ve seen the fallout, and it’s UGLY.

    Absolute fuckin’ truth. I’ve never seen this in a swing dynamic (more later ’bout that) but I’ve seen it so many times in the “open marriage” or “experimenting with polyamory” folks. And, like you said, I have seen it more in men than women… I’m not sure why.

    Anyway. Swing clubs.

    I suspect you’re not gonna be surprised at all, Feve, but I’ve never been to a swing event… and have no desire to be involved in one. It’s related to my disinterest in sex with anyone I have no emotional connection with – and I’m not an exhibitionist. In my earlier years, I doubt I would have had interest – even before I grew such a strong need for emotional connection/friendship with sex.

    I’m pretty certain, even when I was a walking erection of youthful mostly-innocence, it would’ve held no interest for me due to the above: I didn’t have any truly strong relationships at that age and I suspect I would have fallen into the insecurity and jealousy mode.

    These days, I’m not sure how I’d react to a (strong relationship) partner who would want to be involved in something like that. I can’t determine after thinking about it whether I would be, “have fun – be safe; don’t wanna hear the war stories” or if I would turn it inwards and need to work it out between us. It really depends on the strength of the relationship and the communication and understanding on both parts.

    1. Mrs Fever Post author

      Just because I play music does not mean I am a musician.

      For me, the same thing goes for swinging. I’ve had ‘swing’ experiences, but I’m not a ‘Swinger’.

      I am, however, an exhibitionist. And my spouse is definitely a voyeur. So being in an exhibishivoyeuristic (rhymes with supercalifragilistic) situation is a turn-on for both of us.

      And, to address the ’emotional connection’ issue: I don’t have sex with strangers. I addressed that topic somewhat more in depth during my conversation with Jayne on the Intellectual Intercourse post. You may wish to scroll through the comments section there and read my explanation to her, if you’re interested in further clarification.

      These days, I’m not sure how I’d react to a (strong relationship) partner who would want to be involved in something like that.

      When I was single, and when I was in relationships with previous partners, swinging is something I had ZERO interest in. Likewise, D/s. And if someone had told me ten years ago that I would end up having sex with my husband in front of a room full of onlookers, I’d have choke-snort-laughed on my drink and sent water spewing out my nostrils.

      Now, though, being in a strong relationship with a person whose wants/needs/desires are just as important to me as my own… Let’s just say my point(s) of view on a lot of things have changed since we’ve been together. And it’s because we’re both comfortable enough to be honest with each other, and we are capable of negotiating boundaries and syncing our interests in such a way that we can explore our sexuality in new (safe, supportive) ways. Yes, I have hard limits. But sexually speaking, my curiosity is boundless.

      So you never know what the future may hold, Dave. Never say never. 😉

      1. NormalDeviations

        And if someone had told me ten years ago that I would end up having sex with my husband in front of a room full of onlookers, I’d have choke-snort-laughed on my drink and sent water spewing out my nostrils.

        Ahh. This brings up a good point. It’s never crossed my mind and I’m not sure if it would matter to me if there were observers or not. The reason is pretty simple: because I’m not a voyeur (more like… I’m an *anti-voyeur*) and it would bore and/or annoy me to watch people having sex, rather than me participating.

        And it’s because we’re both comfortable enough to be honest with each other, and we are capable of negotiating boundaries and syncing our interests in such a way that we can explore our sexuality in new (safe, supportive) ways.

        Exactly. I can understand this level of trust leading to all sorts of things. The thing that nags at the back of my mind is due to the fact that it’s dependent on the relationship – meaning, two (or more) people, where views, needs, and wishes aren’t always in synch. Trying to reach that absolute state of trust in a partner is something that I’d really want. Damned if I know how to get there… again. Need a partner first, oh yeah… 😉

        So you never know what the future may hold, Dave. Never say never. 😉

        Abso-fuckin-lutely. If there’s one thing I’ve learned over the last decade is that I’m aware of how my views, needs, and vision *will* change down the road. I’m never saying never to anything I can’t see right now, that’s for sure. 😉

        1. Mrs Fever Post author

          You’re an anti-voyeur?

          Does that mean you squinge when you hear other people banging the headboard against the wall when you stay in a hotel? Or you cover your eyes so as not to see naked flesh? Do you turn your back when your partner touches herself in front of you? Do you never watch porn?

          Perhaps you should define your terms. Because ~ especially given the experiences you’ve written about on your blog ~ I *really* don’t see anything “anti” about your voyeurism.


      2. NormalDeviations

        Nah, none of those. Except *perhaps* the second to the last one – and only in certain circumstances. If she’s touching herself and really does not want my interaction, it’s one way to get me pissed off. Even if it’s a denial thing, because of some fucked up scarring from past, eh, experiences that I haven’t quite gotten past yet.

        As far as anti-voyeur and what I mean by it… I’ve got zero interest in observing sex; my interest is in being an active participant (passive being possible, like, being an observer). I believe it’s how I’m wired; if sex interests me I wanna be doing it, not watching it.

        Now, this is kinda different than porn. Porn isn’t a live event within reach. The ability to participate in that is impossible, so it’s mentally stimulating rather than actively participating.

        1. Mrs Fever Post author

          I’ve got zero interest in observing sex; my interest is in being an active participant (passive being possible, like, being an observer).

          That was slightly confusing. Given what I know of you, I’m reading this as:

          I only want to engage in *watching* sexual activity when I am invested both in my partner and in the process.


          And for the record: I’m totally snort-laughing at the fact that you find porn to be ‘mentally stimulating’.

  3. The Suburban Domme

    Quoted from the OP:
    ~*…having an open marriage can actually make your marriage stronger…
    Not true. In our case, having a strong marriage is what has made opening up a possibility. *~

    Nothing to add…it was just awesome to see another person type this out loud and do so—so boldly and confidently!

  4. wildoats1962

    Maybe it was the previous post. I remember the 70’s being mentioned. I basically consider myself a swinger but not a particularly active one. When my wife and I were dating she brought up the subject of threesomes on our second date. We hadn’t even done anything yet. Her parents were there when I arrived, my first time meeting them, they leave and five seconds after the door is closed it’s, “How do you feel about threesomes?” I really didn’t know how I should answer. Was she looking for a swinger or did she have some horrible negative experience that permanently scarred her about swingers? Turns out she was interested. Teaching tact, discretion, and the code words of kink, were a whole nother topic. I spared her some of the more imaginative uses for bodily substances though. I did tell her about my milk fetish and how I think pregnant women are sexy. She was willing for the titty fucking but really didn’t like pititration or pitilingus.. The oft mentioned Sysop reacted with self consciousness when I went to lick her pit too. She relented though. I think it’s always been a more or less unique experience each time.

    I suspect working on the set of a porno is somewhat like that. You have people engaging in a particular sex act, with lots of people watching with varying degrees of interest..

    Well, my Chinese food is here now. Time to eat and go to bed.

    1. Mrs Fever Post author

      Yes, the ’70s were referenced thus:

      Just as there are misconceptions, stigmas, and stereotypes applied to members of the GLBTIQ communities, there are an abundance of ’70s-style misconceptions about swinging.

      As I told Dane (above): One common stereotype about swing parties is that they are nothing more than drunken orgies. All stereotypes originate somewhere, and most stereotypes contain a few grains of truth. In this case, those ‘grains’ come in the form of ‘grain alcohol’, I’d say.

      You said, “Teaching tact, discretion, and the code words of kink, were a whole nother topic.” I’d say those are three other topics. With the topic of ‘kink’ having a multitude of ancillary topics all its own. (And The Suburban Domme is giving the dissection of that particular topic a good go. I think you’ll like her, Wild.)

      Again with the pititration! Lol. Heaven help me if I’m ever in the same room with you, Arch, and the Mister at the same time… GAH!

      Hope you enjoyed your Chinese. You’ve reminded me that I’m hungry.

      1. wildoats1962

        I did enjoy the Chinese, the food was good too.

        Three topics and very important ones, unfortunately way too many people don’t learn until after they make mistakes. The first two can lead to problems and hurt feelings, the last one mostly just wastes time. I ask when I don’t understand something. That’s how I found out what a Lipstick Lesbian was, and how I found out what HWP stood for. That one had me stumped, I was trying to figure out all the possible weirdness I could. Who would’ve guessed Height Weight Proportional. SSBBW had me for a while too. Super size Big Beautiful Woman every body has their own preferences, but we do need the same language. Wouldn’t want to run into any full figured Nazis.

        1. Mrs Fever Post author

          I like that you ask questions, Wild. I, too, am a curious kitty. If I don’t understand something, I will ask for clarification.

          Speaking the same language is important. Thus, my endless ‘How do you define __________?’ questions.

          And I purposely avoid acronyms. Alphabet soup is for eating, not for speaking.

  5. vixenincognola

    I couldn’t agree with your comment about having a strong marriage more! Oh so true!
    Swingers clubs are a new fav of mine. I’m a Nola (new orleans, la) gal and we have two clubs in the city with two totally different vibes.
    You’ve hooked me 🙂 thanks for sharing!

    1. Mrs Fever Post author

      Welcome, and thank you for your comment. 🙂

      You bring up an excellent point about different clubs having different vibes. That may be something to expound upon in the future.

        1. Mrs Fever Post author

          Interesting. While there are BDSM clubs in our area, the Swing clubs here do not cater to the kink crowd. The two major ones here are feminine-centric and couples oriented, and they are both pretty adamant about restricting any kind of BDSM activities within their domain(s). They definitely each have their own “vibe”, but it’s more of an overall-ambience type of thing.

          When I mentioned to the Mister that I was curious about the kink clubs, the response I got was something along the lines of, “Sure, I’ll go with you. As soon as flying pigs take to the air during a snowstorm in hell.”


          One of the Swing clubs *did* host a Spanking Party last Halloween though. I wasn’t there, but from what I understand, various members brought in their spanking benches, paddles, cat-nines, etc, and a good time was had by all. So since it was such a smashing (pun intended) success, I’m hoping they’ll host another party like that at some point in the future. I’d love to go! 😀

          1. vixenincognola

            That sounds very “smashing” indeed!!

            The fetish room is set up pretty neat. There is no pressure, participating or viewing is welcomed.
            They do it an instructional sort of way. They did a how to on using ropes. This guy had this girl completely tied up and hanging from one hook in the ceiling and he could lower her, swing her- she was completely at his mercy.

            They have also done the hooks and piercing skin… Super deep kink.
            I thoroughly enjoyed watching! Don’t think I’m quite there to participate but ya never know!

            Definitely a must do if you ever venture to Nola for our food, history, fun and debauchery!

  6. NormalDeviations

    …having an open marriage can actually make your marriage stronger…

    My push on this, finally.

    What’s the definition of an open marriage, collectively, here?

    I know *my* internal definition of it has changed radically over the last decade…

    1. Mrs Fever Post author

      There has not yet been a ‘collective definition’ established. The person with whom this email exchange took place interpreted the activities I described as “Feve has an open marriage”, because, to his way of thinking, any sexual activity that includes anyone other than husband and wife, denotes an “open marriage”.

      It is not an assessment (or a label) I agree with, and ‘open marriage’ is not a term my husband and I choose to use regarding our somewhat complicated relationship.

      1. NormalDeviations

        Ahhhh! You’ve hit on it, in my view, with what you just said. Meaning: agreement from Dave.

        This question suggests it’d be a good one for your arsenal some Wednesday, eh? Or maybe I’ll swipe it if you don’t. 😉

        1. Mrs Fever Post author

          There have been a couple of good topics that have come up as a result of this post. And thanks for reminding me: I definitely need to post more questions soon.

          Feel free to “swipe” this one, even if I *do* add it to my ‘arsenal’. I’m a polyconversationalist. 😉

  7. williamsjoel22

    I’m a single guy who is in a relationship at the moment. Would I like to visit a “swing club”? No… Right now my girl friend is meeting all my needs and hopefully I’m meeting hers. Would I like to have sex with other women? My first thought would be OH YEAH!!! but then after thinking about it for a while, I probably would not. Why? I guess it would break the trust we have between us. I wouldn’t want my girl having sex with other guys so I guess I shouldn’t be doing it; right? I know some couples can separate love and sex and having recreational sex is really no big deal. To me, having sex creates a bond with that person and bringing in another person into our relationship would break that bond.

    1. Mrs Fever Post author

      So, in other words, you’re thinking with your big head. 😉

      As happens in so many other parts of life… When it comes to swing, fantasy and reality are not the same thing.

      I think it’s great that you’ve taken the time to think about where you are as an individual, as well as where you are in your relationship. Communicating both of those things, as well as how you *feel* (Oh Gawd, you are thinking, Do I have to talk about feelings?) about sexploration… Communicating with your partner about those things is important to maintaining a healthy relationship. 🙂

  8. Pingback: My Thoughts On The Sex Club….Later | The Woman Invisible

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