02nd Sep2016

AS63 Friends

by admin

We spend a little time chatting with our friends John & Jackie Melfi  Authors of the Award winning openlove101 blog & the award wining Colette clubs in Dallas & New Orleans.

J&J

 

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13th Feb2014

St. Juan and Marie

by St. Juan and Marie

Who are St. Juan and Marie?

This is us. This is our story, in less than a 1,00 words ;D

For the most part, we are your normal, average married couple. Happily married 17 years, two kids, two full time jobs, house in the suburbs, and Cleaveresque family portraits all over our walls. No one would ever suspect our “alternative lifestyle” activities.  Actually, we only have one family member (my sister) that is aware of what happens when we go out with “friends”. For the most part, I’m pretty sure she’s done hearing the details, throwing it aside as a piece of our life she just can’t comprehend, just like the rest of the general monogamous population.

Our open marriage fails to fit in the square box given to us so many years ago. We technically only identified with being open for the last couple of years. During the summer of 2007, we started dipping our toes into the swinging community and enjoyed fully diving in during March of 2011. Yes, we took it slow, up until that point. Then we got caught up in a whirlwind fucking frenzy.

Amazing doesn’t even begin to describe our experiences.  Even mediocre encounters gave us new perspectives and different ways to define our wants and needs. Despite the fun we were having, not everything was rainbows and butterflies.

My sister has asked why we do this if it’s not always fun or the least bit stressful. For me, I have lots of reasons. The most important being the personal development and self-realization it has created within me. My marriage has reaped the benefits because it has caused a complete and utter revaluation of trust, security, and reliance on each other.

What really threw a kink into our perceived reality of swinging was a couple that actually became very good friends with us. Things progressed with them to a place I had no business being. At that point, what I didn’t understand was swinging could be anything you make of it. One person’s definition of it doesn’t necessarily have to match up with another’s. Not realizing we could modify and adjust how we managed our relationships with others, I shamed myself for actually developing feelings for another man, but I will refrain from rambling and stay focused. That is another blog topic entirely.

My inherit nature has always been to shut down and not share when things get too difficult, because if you ignore it, it will just go away, right? Apparently, not so! My husband actually wanted me to talk about things and tell him how I was feeling about all the new and exciting changes that were happening in our relationship. I know, this is kind of a chick thing, but we role reverse A LOT in our relationship.

It was right around this point I thought it would be a good idea to try out single dating (which again is another blog all in itself), but we weren’t communicating properly so it turned out to be quite a challenge for us. So much that I realized we needed help. If we were going to “open up” like this I needed to do some serious personal work and we needed to learn to communicate differently with each other. Our old ways weren’t working with this new relationship format.

A couple of years of ago, a friend of my referred a family/marriage counselor to me for a girlfriend and her husband. I kept the number in my phone. Was it for “just in case” or perhaps because I’m lazy and I never clean out my phone? I don’t know, but it was still there. My girlfriend wasn’t impressed because she claimed the counselor was too unconventional and “different”. Those who go against the grain always impress me, so I called her to set up a phone appointment. It was the best decision I’ve made in long while. She took us in that very evening and for almost two years has been our relationship coach. There are no guidelines, no rule book, no user manual for this open lifestyle and I’m not very good at figuring things out on my own.

We’re in a good place right now. At this time, we stick to couple-couple play. Our time together is limited as is, so we use the weekends to reconnect and hangout with old friends and new couples. Separate room play is not an option, as I feel it blurs the lines for us way too much. We are very go-with-the-flow, laid back sort of folk. We want to have fun and enjoy our friends in any given situation.

I’ve come to terms with the fact that it’s OK to actually like someone you’re fucking. A mental/quasi-emotional connection doesn’t scare me away like it initially did. In fact, I prefer that. I’ve come a long way, and I’m proud of that. We’ve got issues, and that is normal, not shameful. I want to share with others about our marriage and how we manage our friends with benefits relationships. Although I would like to converse with others about our experiences, sometimes I really just need to get things off my chest, out of my mind, and on to metaphorical paper. Apparently, I’m game for all kinds of therapy.

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07th Feb2014

Ripping Off the Labels

by St. Juan and Marie

Whatever the label is, it carries a specific connotation along with it. Sometimes it’s positive. Other times it’s positively awful. I suppose labeling is a form of categorization. Categorization is also a form of boxing/storing. I don’t want to categorized, lumped together with others. I, like everyone else in the world, am an individual with special qualities, needs, wants and desires. I’m as guilty of labeling people as anyone. I’ve lived a large part of my life trying to determine who people are based on their labels. Perhaps through age/maturity, it’s become increasingly apparent to me I have to actually rip off the labels in order to see who the person is underneath. Even with my own self.

Our entrance into the “lifestyle” years ago was clouded by numerous labels and like a lot of others, I bought into wearing them. I wore the Swinger name badge loud and proud. What I failed to realize was while wearing that label, I also tried to epitomize the definitions society tacked on to it. That was my fault. That was me trying to be what I thought was expected of me, and not me being my authentic self. (Honestly, I’m still trying to work on figuring that out.)

On the surface, it seems the larger part of society defines swinging as a sexual activity between couples with no strings attached. A purely physical connection, void of feelings other than those generated in your nether regions. I took that seriously, especially when we ran into many other couples who also were in this to “just have fun”. I wasn’t trying to make friends. I was trying to get laid. I’m stubborn, obstinate and had to figure out on my own that wasn’t me. The label I was making myself wear wasn’t who I was; however, keeping up the facade was a lot easier than ripping it off and figuring out who and what I really wanted to be in this “lifestyle”.

[quote]I wonder how many other newbies start off this way?[/quote]

I wonder how many couples want the thrill of fucking but have ignored/forgotten emotions and feelings are attached to this most primitive of act? Most likely the initial feeling created is lust, overwhelming lust when you’re really attracted to someone. That’s a confusing feeling for someone who’s been in a monogamous relationship for almost 20 years. I’d go out on a limb and say it’s generally a confusing feeling for most mono-normative thinking couples on a whole. “WTF am I feeling” kinda shit. I love my husband, why can’t I stop thinking about fucking this other guy (or girl, whatever)!?!? Idk, maybe it was just me. Perhaps I was the only emotional moron in the swinging universe who felt like this. I was embarrassed, ashamed, and at a total loss when I realized my husband had been feeling the same way towards someone else.

So what to do when this happens??? Well, there’s lots of options depending on your level of relationship and emotional security. You could revel in it. You could bail and pull out of swinging altogether. You could start with open, honest dialogue with the opposing couple. You could be a train-wreck and passively aggressive sabotage your most meaningful relationship. Unfortunately, my preference was for the latter. As you’ll hear frequently, swinging will amplify the best and most likely the WORST parts of your relationship. I’m not sure a lot of the people I run into are ready for that. I sure wasn’t. Luckily, I had a spouse whose emotional maturity superseded my own ten-fold. His love and concern for my well-being brought us through the toughest of times. That’s one reason I happily refer to him as my St.Juan. It’s a nickname that suits him quite well. I’m glad we endured and I’m equally as impressed with the “new me” that has emerged. I’m not wearing any labels, nor am I placing them on anyone else. This is just me, take it or leave it. I’m finally ok with that. ~Marie

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