From Monogamy To Open Marriage: Wasting Time At A Swinger Club

We know that mood, timing, desires, limits, as well as other prominent things like language barrier and sexual preference,  can quickly turn a “maybe” into “not an option.”

From Monogamy To Open Marriage is a weekly column devoted to the discussion of pursuing sex and love outside marriage. 


We booked a hotel. We packed an overnight bag. Actually, we packed two since I opted to bring an absurd amount of clothing with me. I never know how I’m going to feel about what I *think* I want to wear to a swinger club until I’m wearing it. So, I allow myself to try on at least eight different dresses/outfits before making a final decision. Since we decided to get ready at the hotel, I needed to bring all eight wardrobe options with me. My stride was slower, weighted down by my heavy bag of clothing, until my husband insisted on carrying it for me (yay chivalry, but for the record, I am capable of carrying a bag) as we walked from our home to the train station to head to New York City.

I knew better than to have specific expectations, but I was optimistic. 

On a couple of swinger sites, I posted that we would be at this club. I expected to meet people who saw my posts — ideally a couple or a woman that appealed to both of us. Single men are so easy to find, so I don’t need optimism for that. On the train, we went over proposed scenarios and asked one another about boundaries and rules for the night:

If a person/couple is interested in just one of us, what do you want to do? 

What if we meet a couple and only one of us is interested?

Private rooms only or open/shared spaces tonight?

What time should we call it a night?

Should we bring any alcohol? (most clubs are BYOB)

What if one of us wants to leave and the other isn’t quite ready?

 

Related: From Monogamy To Open Marriage: Why I Only Want The Big D

 

After we checked into the hotel, I attempted a short nap. Since my mornings usually begin right around sunrise, the only way to ensure I’ll still be awake (and nice to people) after 11 pm is to take a midday nap. After a restless 40 minutes of failing to relax, I got up to take a shower and start getting ready. Perhaps the universe was trying to forewarn me about the evening because the water was constantly changing temperature. As I dried off and watched my husband getting undressed, I suppressed my arousal so I could ‘save’ it for later that night. I put on some eyeliner and mascara and brushed the knots out of my hair. I tried on most of the clothes I brought with me only to settle for the very first dress I put on. 

We caught the subway, walked a few blocks, and found the unmarked entrance to the club. We climbed the creaky stairs and were greeted by friendly security guards and a bubbly hostess. While my husband paid our entry fee, I peered into the club and inadvertently made eye contact with about ten different guys. While I can appreciate a vast selection of eager men, I have plenty of opportunities for that. With my heart (okay, my libido) set on meeting a couple or a single woman, I averted my eyes from their glares and friendly smiles as we walked into the lounge area.

We assessed the room and didn’t need to communicate our conclusions since we know each other's preferences very well. There was a small selection of single women that, at a glance, had potential. Some couples seemed fun and friendly. 

Anyone who has dabbled in this lifestyle for more than five minutes knows that aesthetic appeal is only one small component of the formula that makes a connection. 

We know that mood, timing, desires, limits, as well as other prominent things like language barrier and sexual preference, can quickly turn a “maybe” into “not an option.” 

After chatting with a lot of different people, it seemed anyone we were interested in was either just there to watch or wasn’t too eager to play. Neither of us is very forward or pushy, so when body language and engagement seems to sway toward the “just being friendly” vibe, we tend to leave it at that. When we headed to the common play space, we sat with a dozen other people and watched an intense sexual scene between three people. As they moved from the bed to the floor to the corner of the club and over and over, the screaming, begging, and howling caused the crowd to become a captive audience. There were points when the scene was humorous and awkward, and I could tell that I wasn’t the only one who experienced a decrease in libido while trying to stay out of the way. 

Once we were back in the lounge, I tried chatting with a woman who appeared bored and alone, and who seemed to want to stay that way. Three men sat down near us, one introduced himself, and the other two just stared. The man told me I was sexy in about half a dozen different ways, and before he could begin pouring another loaded compliment on, we decided it was time to call it a night. All I could do was hope we weren’t too tired by the time we got back to our hotel room so that we could have some sexual gratification that night. 

On the subway, we struggled to stay awake. When we finally made it back to the hotel room, I knew that any attempt at sex would be best to put off until morning. While we had both hoped for a fantastical night at that club, as I drifted off to sleep in the crook of my husband’s arm, I knew we would have incredible sex in the morning. 


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