Yes, I was raised conservatively but with blinders on. Anything that would raise a normal curiosity or question was explained to be taboo. The internet was not a thing when I was a kid, so I was left to figure it out on my own, through the vast knowledge of my friends. My parents felt that if you don’t discuss it, it won’t exist. That is not the case. I had ‘normal’ sexual curiosity since I was young. Looking back, I believe that my interest in sex was and remains a bit stronger than other women my age. I have always been drawn to the taboo, pushing the limits of the social norms and bending the rules a bit. These characteristics are why opening my marriage was like a breath of fresh air to me.

Even though my subconscious was a very dirty girl, my main mindset was a forced conservative. Who would let somebody else have sex with their spouse? That would be insane. How could I be with another man, and my husband know? Impossible. Who would ever be a swinger?

Don’t get me wrong; the first few experiences that we had in the lifestyle were clusterfucks. We slowly found our way to what we liked and disliked as a unified couple.

I spent years feeling like there was something wrong with me. I was not like my conservative counterparts, and I was much more brave and outspoken. I didn’t fit in, and I found that being in forced church present wrapping parties with my Christmas turtleneck on made me want to scream. Nobody ever told me that it was ok to be different.

I remember a particular incident when, at a church breakfast, a group of women were discussing the potential disfellowshipping of a 19-year-old member that had ‘turned gay.’ I was appalled. This young man was a pillar in the church, active and talented, and passionate about his belief in God. Yet, because of his attraction to men he was going to be cut off from the others. I was stunned and speechless. The speechless part didn’t last long. The truth was, I was worse than the 19-year-old because I did not want to organize the choir schedule or bake cookies to raise money for the new tables in the fellowship hall. My heart was not there, unlike his. But I was accepted because of the role I played, and because he chose to be who he is as well as being honest, is shunned. I did not stay. I was formally asked to leave. I have a benevolent heart, but organized religion was not where it belonged. I don’t do well with stringent rules or acceptance based on ‘if you act like me’ mentality.

The thing I love about people is that every one of us is so different. Sure there are similarities, but there are also deep fantasies and curiosities. I find it fascinating in the swinging lifestyle that I get the chance to meet many different people that are allowed to be themselves.