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The job of foreplay

Concerning your comments: Back in the Fifties I used to read those men's magazines. You know, the one's that featured articles with titles like: "I Conquered the Lost Tribe of Amazon Women?" I remember once coming across a short item about foreplay that treated the idea that women needed to be warmed up like it was a new discovery--and maybe back then it was! Anyway, there was nothing in the article that indicated that you--as a man--would enjoy the effort you'd have to put out to get your baby going; it was just a sacrifice you'd have to make for good nookie.

To quote you: "a highly stimulated and aroused woman feels better during sex--beyond the obvious question of vaginal lubrication, extended arousal phase causes all the tissues of the vaginal wall to swell, making her both softer in texture and tighter around you. Now, what’s not to like about that?" True, but you're not going far enough. A highly stimulated and aroused woman's whole body--arms, legs, back, whatever--will feel amazing in that situation.

More anecdotal evidence needed

Well ask him next time if the couples were swinging because they thought it would repair their marriage. They're quite common in swinging and already on the path to divorce. It's a huge mistake so it wouldn't be a surprise to find them in counselling!

Needless to say experienced swingers avoid couples like that like the plague!


There is a name for this type of statistical error: a self-selecting sample. There is a LW reader (whose name I can't use because he thinks it breaks some copyright law or code of honor or something) who specializes in this type of error. He often mentions that his wife is a couple's counselor, and the vast majority of swinging couples she treats end up divorced.

Ummm...if the only swingers you ever meet are the ones seeking marriage counseling, wouldn't that skew your view of swinging marriages just a little bit? LOL.

Annecdotal Evidence

Another point I wanted to make was the "marriage counsellor" claims of percentages of couples in open marriages. As you point out, it was his own experience and numbers that came to HIM for counselling.

Most chat boards where areas like this are discussed warn you to go to "lifestyle friendly counsellors" to get an unbiased opinion or help. Someone who has at least a modicum of understanding of what drives a particular lifestyle, rather than a "thou shalt not" bible belt mentality. (A.K.A brain dead)

Counsellors frequently have their own agendas, faith based, pro-marriage, anti-abortionist etc. Seriously, would you want to go to an anti-gay counsellor if your problem was being gay.

Counsellors usually lay out their areas of expertise and preferred practice areas and would attract appropriate clientele. Those advertising "lifestyle friendly" are the most broadminded. (anecdotal evidence) :-)

Based on anecdotal evidence, a lifestyle counsellor could claim 100% of all married people are in swinging or open marriages.

Open marriages sometimes work out fine.

I've been married for 25 years and am in an open marriage. My wife and I have had several different sexual partners over the years. We've had our ups and downs, as all married couples do. That said, we have maintained our relationship quite well. There are times when one of us has gotten jealous of the other 'getting some' while the other isn't, but those are few and far between. As we've gotten older, we are both in our 50's, the frequency of outside relationships have slowed.

Has it affected our marriage? I don't know. How can I? I haven't had any other experience than the marriage I'm in and couldn't give an accurate opinion on the subject. All I know is we are still together and reasonably happy. We still fight on occasion. We still have sex with each other. We still sometimes pursue 'conquests' with other sexual partners.

If she gets laid by another guy it doesn't bother me, I actually get turned on by it. If I get laid by another girl , she seems to get turned on by that. When she has sex with another girl, I really want the details! If I decide to suck a guy off, she wants to know how he tastes, If I get sucked off by a guy, she wants to know if he's better at it than her. That fact that we are both bi-sexual might make a difference in why our marriage has lasted. Again, I don't know. All I do know is that it works for us.

It's all in your values

What you consider important. What is less so. Strong marriages? It's hard enough when things are going right. It's shit when they are not. All in all, thank you for your writings. As you have said several times. It's not for everybody, only the strong. Looking at my family and compatriots (and my own sometimes rocky marriage)...IT AIN'T FOR ME. Might be for someone else, but you have made it somewhat clear (to a point) it really doesn't save the marriage.

Thanks, gordo12

I'm sure that I didn't even scratch the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the various studies that have been conducted. Thanks for adding a few links. (By the way, had I known that was allowed, I would've included the links to all my studies in my essay!)

Re. open marriage, if one spouse is going behind the other's back, then it really isn't what I would call an "open marriage." If they had an agreement where they allowed each other to do whatever they wanted without the other spouse needing to know, I suppose that could be "open", but I have no idea how you would pull that off!

As always, thanks for your comments.

Here's another article

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/new-sexu al-revolution-polyamory/?WT.mc_id=SA_DD_20160105

My only criticism

it seems you use the terms swingers and open marriages interchangeably. I don't agree. An open marriage to me is the ability to have sex anytime anywhere with anybody without letting your partner know. Swinging on the other hand, usually is a do it together activity with rules and etiquette the partners have agreed on beforehand.

There have been a couple of psychiatrists that have done swinger studies and these studies have shown higher satisfaction rates and more open communication between spouses. Accordingly the divorce rates have been (siginificantly) lower.

Here's a couple of decent articles:

https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/th e-swinging-paradigm/201310/are-swingers-freaky-and-d eviant

https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-s winging-paradigm/201311/women-swinging-sex-and-sed uction

Re. Infidelity

Good point. I actually wrote a story on that very situation, called "Opening Up."

There are basically two main categories of reasons why a married person (in a monogamous relationship) would cheat on his/her partner:

1) Dissatisfaction with the marriage, unhappiness, boredom, feelings of inadequacy, etc. Basically, there are problems with the marriage.

2) Sexual gratification, either spontaneous or prolonged desire.

If a spouse falls into the first category, the marriage is doomed regardless of whether it is open or not. My original statement in this essay referred only to the second category. Presumably, a spouse in that second category would act on his/her impulses only with permission/knowledge of the other spouse.

Having an open marriage certainly doesn't preclude anyone from having a dissatisfying marriage. Some marriages will be dissatisfying regardless of the agreed-upon arrangement.

Thanks for your thoughtful comment.


You stated that having an open marriage negated infidelity and communication as reasons for problems in a relationship. This is absolutely not true. I do not engage in such a relationship, but I have known people who do. When a partner engages in relations without knowledge or consent of their partner it is infidelity, and it happens in open relationships as well as conventional ones.

To: gxnn

Thank you for you kind comments about my writings. As for your question about self-conscienceness, the answer may not be what you want to hear. Some people simply are not into voyeurism. It is like anything else really, some people are into different things and others are not.

Sometimes you can convince somebody to "try" something new and sometimes you can't. The best you can do in a situation like this is to reassure the party involved of what your desires may be and to see what they say in response to those desires.

As an example, before I ever get involved with another man I explain that my husband must be present for all encounters. I also explain that the reason for my insistence on this is for my protection and eroticism. I've only had a couple of men refuse after explaining my reasoning and that is okay with me.

I hope this adequately answers your question,
Deborah Sue

Very informative

For a person not in the lifestyle it explains a lot.

My thoughts

I've been there, and yes split the wood too, still do. I remember my first time. My now ex wife was the witness. I remember being the first to go down. I leaned in as he pulled his hard dick from my ex's pussy, I hesitated, then said the hell with it. There would never be a better time. First impression, when he started thrusting his dick into my mouth, relief, I was afraid I would be rejected. Other impressions; his cock was hard, felt big in my mouth, couldn't believe I was doing it, he was hot and lubricated from her tight warm pussy. Most lasting impression, even tho I had not completed my first time, I knew I would do it again. One rather ridiculous thought that night, I didn't want to be too good, so he wouldn't think I was gay. Yeah, I really thought that, but I'm over it now. So many years ago, I think of it as my golden age, my wife, my best friend and I. The adventures were many and varied. With only two exceptions, it was always a hand job or oral, in all the various forms we could conceive. Mostly in the presence of the wife, and only with two guys, each man at a different time in our lives. Though as the years went by, the second gentleman and myself enjoyed our sex in many ways, many times, just us, no women. It was very satisfying, and if I had any guilt, I lost it over time. We came to an interesting conclusion, that, for us, it was more fun, and more naughty, and more exciting to be the sucker of cock. We never determined the reason for that conclusion, didn't think it was important. I'll always think of my "Bi Time," my "Golden Age," with great fondness.

very nice writing and very logical, it is the voice of my mind. You have make a good example of yourself. But technically a third-party may not be self-concisous when he is naked and being watched unless he is a professional, how do you handle such problem?

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