Swing-aphobia – the fear that an orgy will break out in a hot tub near you

I’m catching up on my email after the holiday hiatus, and am noticing that I’m getting more questions than usual about the issue of threesomes and swinging.  More and more people seem to be curious. Known as “The Lifestyle”, swinging, swapping, or anything that includes one or more people into sexual play with you and your partner.  This ranges anywhere from light touches to the “full swing” of complete penetration, and evening partner swapping. The stereotype of dropping your keys into a basket by the door, and going home with whomever picks them up, or of wild orgies the minute you enter lifestyle domain, went out of style with lava lamps and wide bottoms, or only exist with the small, very extreme end of the spectrum.
Having filmed a number of the “adult only lifestyle clubs” in Canada for my television series, and having toured clubs, resorts, and participated in workshops for the radio show, what I understand is that participants of  The Lifestyle look like you and I (from 20’s to 60’s with most from 35 to 55), are better educated, with more money than average, and on the whole, have better relationships.
“What you say?” Yup, ordinary people, who love their spouses, who are open minded, understand that sex is adult play, and have clear rules and open communication about what happens when they play.
The etiquette of swinging seems to be universal and quite rigid. It’s almost always couples (except for a some that let in non-predatory single women), No, absolutely means No, conversation happens like in any social situation, there are no visible drugs or falling down drunks, no male on male or anal sex, and most of the women are at least bi-curious, and interested in the possibilities of girl on girl massage and touch. And normal social rules apply. Nobody jumps you, touches you inappropriately unless you invite it overtly, or tries to steal your partner.  Condoms are left on every flat surface, and you are expected to use them. Rude people are universally shunned or asked to leave. If you break the rules you are asked to leave, and won’t be welcome back. You have to give your real name in confidence, and are expected to respect the confidences of other people present.
In Canada, private, consenting group sexual activity on private property is considered legal after the Supreme Court of Canada ruled on a Montreal based club that had been raided didn’t fall under the criminal code and was deemed unwarranted harassment by the highest court in the land. And the police across the country got the message clearly that the state really has ” no business in the bedrooms of the nation”, unless there was abuse or money was changing hands.
Each country is different, but as the North American culture becomes more open, and more and more people are trying to figure out how to keep a relationship that can last up to 60 odd years hot and interesting sexually, the Lifestyle play ( in the nicest possible way of course) is soliciting more and more interest.
For many years I’ve been talking about the “in-between space” between swingers and your parent’s bridge club.  There were this group of under served adults who wanted to be sexy but safe.  So along with my husband we started the Ducklings- a social group for the safe, fun, happy, friends, but non-aggressive people in the middle. We now have 5 chapters. Maybe there is one near you or you can travel with us. Check out the Ducks.