How to Swing: a couple’s guide to the swingers lifestyle
If you’re considering the swinging lifestyle, are new to the concept of swinging, or are looking to improve your swinging relationship, read on. This four part “how to” series will help to demystify swinging, answer common questions, provide you with the tools to safely navigate this complicated landscape, and identify ways to get started and meet other like minded play partners.
History of Swingers
There are a number of theories on how swinging started, however, the most common theory emerged in the 1950s whereby California military couples would gather at “key clubs” or “key parties”. The men would throw their keys into a bowl and their wives would choose a sexual partner for the evening by randomly selecting a key from the bowl. Eventually, the media caught wind of the activities and began writing stories about this new social phenomenon dubbed as “wife swapping”. Over time, the phenomenon spread to the surrounding suburban communities and by the early 1970s, the term commonly known as “swinging” emerged.
Today, swinging has evolved into what is now more loosely called “the Lifestyle”. Although no exact count exists, The North American Swing Club Association (NASCA) claims there are organized swing clubs in almost all states as well as Canada, England, France, Germany, and Japan.
This new form of swinging encompasses a much broader range of play styles. Although there’s no shortage of “full swap” couples, many couples are now entering “the lifestyle” to enjoy a lighter side of fantasy play with others that includes Voyeurism, Exhibitionism, Threesomes and Soft Swap but may never include full swap or “wife swapping” (visit our Sexipedia for detailed definitions). Due to the insurgence of detailed information about this topic on the internet, “The Lifestyle” is growing in leaps and bounds. There are conventions, resorts, clubs and websites dedicated to “the Lifestyle”. There are mainstream television shows such as “Swingtowns” and “Big Love” dedicated to the lifestyle and other forms of open relationships. And in some countries, including Canada, swinging has been recognized as a legal activity at the highest judicial level. With its increasing popularity and social acceptability, more and more Canadian couples are turning to this new form of swinging as a way to “spice up” their sex lives.
Who are swingers?
According to the “General Social Survey”, Swingers tend to be middle class, white collar professional couples with above average education and income. They are doctors, lawyers, nurses, teachers, mid to upper level managers, entrepreneurs and office workers. when it comes to attitudes about sex and marriage they are less racist, less sexist, and less heterosexist than the general population. Swinging appears to make the vast majority of swingers’ marriages happier, and swingers rate the happiness of their marriages and life satisfaction generally as higher than the non-swinging population.”
Swingers could be your business associates, your friends, your neighbours…they may even be you!
Facts about Swingers
- 31% of Canadians agreed that as long as there is no deception involved, a person can be intimate with more than one person. (Source: 24 hours/Sun Media Sex Poll, October 31, 2007)
- swingers are happier in their relationships than the norm. 60% of swingers said that swinging improved their relationship and only 1.7% said it made their relationship less happy. (Source: Electronic Journal of Human Sexuality, Volume 3, Oct. 10, 2000)
- Half of those who rated their relationship very happy before becoming swingers maintained it had become even happier. 90% of those with less happy relationships said swinging improved them. (Source:Electronic Journal of Human Sexuality, Volume 3, Oct. 10, 2000)
- Almost 70% of swingers claimed no problem with jealousy, around a quarter admitted to some jealousy but only 6% said it was very much a problem. (Source: Electronic Journal of Human Sexuality, Volume 3, Oct. 10, 2000)
- Swingers rate themselves happier (59% against 32% very happy) and their lives much more exciting (76% against 54% exciting) than does the rest of the population, by surprisingly large margins. Electronic Journal of Human Sexuality, Volume 3, Oct. 10, 2000)
- There was no difference between the responses of men and women. (Source: Electronic Journal of Human Sexuality, Volume 3, Oct. 10, 2000)