Thursday, June 30, 2011

Dropping By the Swingsets

This Australian writer says “sex positive” basically boils down to “swinger,” but this is incorrect, as there are many people who identify as sex positive, and many more who are, even if they don’t use the term, who are not swingers. I’m sex positive, and I’m not a swinger. I certainly support the rights of swingers, but I couldn’t be classified as one myself.

The column gets better, though, as swingers are depicted as they are, rather than as a nasty caricature…

I had to admit, I found some of the anecdotes in the forums pretty refreshing. Here we had seemingly well-educated, intelligent and confident people discussing better ways to give and receive sexual pleasure.

Further down…

I was impressed by the level of respect that everyone had for each other, especially themselves. There was no placating, no boundary-abusing, no malice or narrow expectation about what was morally right and wrong because, it seemed, this community was founded on the principle of safe, pleasurable, experimental, joyful sex that you want to have. That foundation is predicated on the idea the individuals involved have actively questioned how they want to live their sex lives, rather than just going along with a mainstream view which doesn’t seem to be that satisfying for a damn-large number of people, does it?

Consider, if you will, the distinct downsides of your ‘average’ heteronormative relationship; one partner, a dynamic based on restrictive gender expectations, forever alone in monogamous commitment. That may be fine if you’ve explored enough of yourself and the world to understand a few things before you ‘settle down’... but how many of us can honestly say we’ve really done that? The dating scene, for instance, is all about hunting down the perfect partner, rather than opening up to many.

Again, there’s nothing wrong with monogamy, only the way some people do it or some people who aren’t suited to it try to force themselves to practice it, thereby hurting others. There would be less of this is nonmonogamy wasn’t discriminated against in our laws. There are been people who have been lifelong monogamists with only each other, and they have had good lives. That shouldn’t be ignored. But nonomogamists have rights, too.

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