Both swinging and polyamory fall under the umbrella of ethical non-monogamy. So what’s the big deal?
Can’t we all just get along? Polyamorists and swingers often set themselves in opposition of one another even though they both operate outside the confines of mainstream culture, choosing to love differently in non-monogamous relationships.
Swingers vs Poly People
A Difference of Commitment and Intention?
Poly people will say polyamory is all about love and relationships; and swingers are all about sex and wild swinger parties. But swingers do engage in longer than one-night stand relationships and complain polys don’t respect or are jealous of their swinging lifestyle. In fact, swingers typically have a very strong primary relationship from which they explore.
Private vs Public Ethical Non-Monogamy
Swingers are often scrutinized and feel a need to hide their practices while poly people are often more open about their relationships (pretending you don’t have two wives can be difficult.) Polys and swingers, you would think, should be compatriots, but often the decision to be out about one’s lifestyle is what separates them.
Swingers often see themselves as normal everyday people that crave a little excitement now and then. They don’t see their lifestyle as anything unusual, perhaps just more adventurous than most. And some of their relationships with other swinger couples do become long-term, not unlike those of poly people. Some people that begin experimenting with swinging end up in polyamorous relations.
Both Polyamory and Swinging are Part of ENM
Polys are often people that live many aspects of their life apart from what is considered mainstream – the types of work they do, other social activities they enjoy, and the environments they choose to live in. Very much like their swingers who also have their own subculture.
I don’t understand the judgements I hear from one group to another as I see more similarities between swingers and poly people than differences. These two ethically non-monogamous groups should be championing one another and encouraging a wider acceptance from traditional relationships and lifestyles.
Swingers vs Polys: How do view one another as a subculture? Is there a crossover?