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Mom and corporate employee by day, swinger by night

Christine Bryant is a freelance writer based in Columbus, OH, where she lives with her husband and daughter. She writes for SheKnows, as well as several other publications that include newspapers and magazines. She writes on topics such ...

Mom says swinging saved her marriage

When Sabrina and her husband opened up their marriage — and their bed — to other partners, they discovered a whole new world.

As a mother of three, Sabrina Smith found herself experiencing many of the same draining emotions moms often feel.

"There were many years when raising kids, working and maintaining a household just left me feeling completely depleted," the 41-year-old Minneapolis mom said. "I had no energy and did not consider myself a sexy, beautiful woman. It's like I totally forgot my sexuality."

Something needed to change — Sabrina needed reinvigorating.

When Sabrina's husband saw a notice in the local newspaper advertising a swinger party, she thought the idea sounded like something they needed to try.

Though they had dabbled in exploring other sexual experiences, swinging wasn't yet a world they had explored.

"We started out with threesomes early in our marriage, just to sort of dip our toes in and see how it felt," she said. "Gradually we moved on to meeting other couples, and now it really is open to anything that works for both of us, either as a couple or individually."

Now married for more than 20 years, the Smiths don't limit themselves to a single expression of swinging.

"We play with other couples individually and in small groups with people we know well," says Sabrina, who by day works for a major corporation in the Minneapolis area. "We meet couples at events and either play with them that night as a foursome or make plans to meet later."

They each have permission to play separately in one-on-one situations as well, she says. To some, this may open the door to jealousy — something Sabrina says is a normal human expression.

"I really don't find myself jealous during the sexual part of swinging," she said. "I honestly just find it hot and sexy. Where I do experience something that feels like jealousy — emotions can get a little confusing — is if I feel like my husband, or someone I'm seeing, is spending more time with someone else."

Sabrina thinks her feelings come from a fear of being forgotten about or not feeling special — emotions found commonly in any type of relationship.

"The best way for me to overcome this is to focus on creating my own happiness," she says. "When I'm living life to the fullest, rather than worried about whether I'm the girl getting the most attention from a particular guy, I am happier and that makes me a more interesting, sexy partner."

Though swinging has become a part of her life, Sabrina says it doesn't work for every couple — and it certainly won't cure deep-rooted issues in a relationship.

"I absolutely feel that opening up a relationship in this way demands a new level of communication," she says. "This can either make your relationship better or very quickly cause it to disintegrate."

She says swinging simply amplifies what's already happening in someone's partnership.

"If your relationship is struggling, swinging will make it worse," she advises. "If your relationship is healthy, swinging can bring it to a whole new level."

For Sabrina personally, swinging has helped her reclaim her sexuality and her connection to the outside world beyond parenthood.

"I've experienced great spiritual and emotional growth from this," she says. "I am more open to other people emotionally and more interested in meeting people socially."

Though she has decided to keep her swinging lifestyle private from her family, Sabrina has opened up about her experiences in a blog.

"I felt we had a unique voice in this lifestyle," she says.

A natural part of their relationship, she wanted to share their experiences with others who might be exploring or considering this lifestyle.

"We are pretty much the most normal suburban couple you could imagine," she says. "This is who we are and I felt that others might connect to that."

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