4/26 Are You Swinging to Enhance or Fix Your Relationship?  

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4/26/2022 9:13 am
4/26 Are You Swinging to Enhance or Fix Your Relationship?

The difference may seem nuanced, but swinging rarely fixes problems.

Our long-time podcast listeners have heard us say over and over again that we dont recommend getting into the swinger lifestyle as a means of fixing a relationship that is less than ideal. It can be problematic, even disastrous if one or both partner decides to partake of the lifestyle in order to fill in an important missing component in the relationship or tries to make a relationship work that currently is not working for one or both partners.
But the difference between fixing and enhancing a relationship can be nuanced.
Is it OK to get something from a play partner that is different than what you get from your primary partner? Does your relationship have to be 100% trouble-free for swinging to work for you as a couple? What counts as fixing and what counts as enhancing?
Lets tackle enhancing first.
If you’re in a respectful, mutually satisfying relationship and you both agree that youd like to expand the boundaries of your sexual activities to include other people, youre looking to enhance what you already have. Thats a great reason to try out the Lifestyle! Wed argue that its the ideal reason. Your relationship is not likely to be 100% problem-free (we havent met anyone in that situation, ever). But if your communication is consistently strong and your level of commitment to one another is off-the-charts, swinging can be a fun enhancement for both partners.
It may happen that one or the other (or both) of you find that you experience things with others in a play experience that are different than the things you experience with your partner thats part of the excitement of the Lifestyle! Thats, not the same as seeking out a fix to problems you may experience with your primary partner.
If you get something from other play partners that you dont get from your primary partner, it doesnt mean youre trying to fix a missing part of your relationship. It means youre enjoying a variety of human experiences. And, if youre doing it well, youre also talking about those experiences with your partner and encouraging one another to explore and enjoy them.
So, whats fixing?
Fixing is when one or both partners are less-than-satisfied with the intimacy of their primary relationship and hope that opening up to experiences with others will fulfill the missing component, often without discussing it fully (or at all) with one another. Fixing is using the Lifestyle in place of honest communication and maybe in place of counseling that would strengthen the relationship. Fixing occurs when a couple feels unhappy with each other, whether they discuss it or not, and look to the Lifestyle as a salve for that dissatisfaction.
It may be that the couple loves and admires one another a great deal, but experiences difficulties or incompatibilities in their sexual relationship. The Lifestyle isnt a great way to fix that. In fact, opening up a relationship with sexual tension to others may jeopardize the relationship. On top of that, it may cause drama that gets foisted on the play partners invited in. Nobody in the Lifestyle wants to become part of a schism between two primary partners.
How can you tell if youre fixing versus enhancing?
Take an honest inventory of where you are in your relationship. Ask important questions, such as Can/do we talk openly, candidly, and without reservation with each other about our sexual<b> desires </font></b>and fantasies?
Do we have a fulfilling intimate life right now, with each other?
Do we both have a desire to experiment with the Lifestyle, or is one of us trying to convince the other?
Is there anything we should address about our intimate life or relationship that one or both of us would rather avoid?
If you find one or both of you would rather not address all those questions honestly, thats the first sign that youre heading toward trying to fix. If you are able to be very honest in your responses to those questions and the answers are YES, YES, YES, and NO youre probably looking to enhance more than fixing your relationship.


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