Want more than a Swinger but not sure I'm poly either...
Hello everyone! This is my first post here. This is also the first time I've ever really researched polyamory.
A bit of background first. I am 30 years old and have been married to my husband since I was 21. For several reasons, my earlly twenties were very difficult. I was severely depressed and literally slept the days and nights away. Looking back on it now, I always say that my personal, sexual, intellectual, etc. growth was all put on hold during that time. When I should've been figuring out who I was as a person- I was ALSO trying to figure out who I was as a wife, a mother ( and later a mother of a special needs child). It was a lot. Not making excuses, but I just shut down. Now at 30, I am doing a ton of growing-emotionally, sexually, and personally. The reason I tell you all of this is because for the last three years, I've been in a huge transition in my life.
About 26 is when things started to change. I'll spare you the details but over the next 3 years I got my life back on track. Because of great family and friends, I was able to take some time to focus on myself. After that I focused on the children and marriage I neglected for so long. I became the wife and mother I knew I could be, I felt valued and finally, I REALLY became comfortable with my sexuality and fantasies. And although I was a completely different (better in my opinion) wife than my husband married, my husband was the same, good ole man I married. Loyal, calm, neutral, logical, even mannered, and conservative. I should just say, we are complete opposites. I know I am loved and I love my man. We've worked through a lot in our relationship and we are grounded and happy. But he's sooooo darn conservative (sexually). I tried to slowly introduce him to new ideas and although he plays along because he loves me, the feelings behind the motions are not genuine so it's just not the same. Don't misunderstand me, I am far from bored with my husband. We have an active, incredible sex life. But there are things I wish to explore that he has no desire to explore.
So, to fill that need, I started to chat/webcam online. I know, I know. Trust me I know, online communications are ...well...interesting. But there are good, genuine, sexy, creative people out there. It's like finding a needle in a haystack but it's possible. I still have some online friends to this day. I adore them. I really do consider them my friends- even though it's not like we are Facebook friends or that I even know their last names in over 90 percent of the cases. They allow me to explore with them and I've learned a lot about myself through my interactions with them. This has never been a secret to my husband. He has always known about and understood the type of relationships I had with these men/women. He often came in while I chatted or cammed with them. I have never hidden anything from him. He occasionally joined me on cam-but more for my sake than his. He accepted that this was the way for me to fill that need to safely explore with others. We continued to have a great relationship full of fantastic sex and lots of laughs. For years, that seemed to be enough but increasingly I became interested in the idea of swinging. Mainly because, eventually, after chatting with someone for a year and a half, it'd reach the point where I'd want to meet them physically. I would bring the idea of opening up our relationship to my husband over the years and eventually our discussions became more and more serious. In fact, at first he was not interested at all but told me I could "do what I wanted to but he just didn't want to hear about it." But to me, that felt like him tolerating me cheating and if he wasn't going to do this with me, I wasn't going to do it at all. Fast forward to this day, we are a "swinging" couple, that plays both as a couple and seperately. We've had some physical expierences with others- some good, some not so good. We've remained open and honest with one another throughout the journey.
Problem is ... swinging doesn't feel like enough to me, which leaves me wondering if I'm perhaps more polyamours than a "swinger". But on the other hand, having always struggled with intimacy, my husband is more interested in swinging than polyamory. To me,swinging seems to be "let's meet and f*ck immediately" and then onto the next. I am looking for genuine connections with others and I don't feel like I will find that in the swinging world. I don't like the idea of being a wam bam thank Mam kind of girl. I'm not sure how I'd feel if I were at a party, playing with someone and then saw them playing with others when they were done with me. I know that this is more than just about sex for me but I also am not sure how I feel about the idea of loving others (or my husband loving others). I was reading about the models of relationship types but it's all so confusing at this point. Obviously, I am planning on doing much more research into this and having many more discussions with my husband about it but am just curious on thoughts veterans may have. I realize this is a process and may take years to figure out-- this is my first step.