Some background before we get to today's SLLOTD...
On Friday last week two notorious anti-gay bigots held a press conference at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. John Becker from Bilerico took one for the LGBT team and sat through the whole fucking thing and took notes:
The purpose of the organization, called the Coalition for Family Values, is "to unify and coordinate" anti-equality organizations around the world in order to most effectively obstruct the global push for LGBT human rights. It was unveiled by Scott Lively of Abiding Truth Ministries and Peter LaBarbera of Americans for Truth About Homosexuality; both organizations are SPLC-certified anti-LGBT hate groups. Other notable members of the still-growing coalition include Linda Harvey of Mission: America, Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association, former Navy Chaplain Gordon Klingenschmitt, and Oklahoma State Rep. Sally Kern. LaBarbera—who has traveled to Jamaica to spread his extremist anti-LGBT views—and Lively—who has spread homophobic propaganda in Russia, Uganda, Latvia, and Moldova—were joined at the press conference by self-proclaimed "ex-gay" Greg Quinlan and Diane Gramley, head of the Pennsylvania chapter of the American Family Association (another SPLC-certified hate group).
LaBabera and Lively heaped praise on Russia—where it is now illegal to be out and a vicious anti-gay pogrom is underway—while heaping scorn on equality, LGBT activists, and Matthew Shepard. Both men stated that kids are better off in orphanages than they are in families headed by gay couples. Families headed by same-sex couples are not even families, Lively insisted. Then Peter LaBabera chimed in with this:
"I think a good example [of a non-family] is Dan Savage. Dan Savage has raised a son with his supposed husband. He's already admitted publicly to engaging in sexual three-ways—his husband, him, and another man they both know; he advocates now for... straight couples with sexual problems, he advocates having secret adulterous affairs. And Dan Savage is now in the forefront of advancing these radical promiscuous values to non-homosexuals. And so I think that is what's happening with this agenda. It's not that homosexuals are being made more monogamous, it's that homosexual values—these reckless values—are being imported into straight society."
My family being attacked from a podium at the National Press Club—that was a new experience. But I will grant Peter this: I do think there are things straight people can learn from gay people. (I also think gay people can learn from straight people.) Gay relationships tend to be more egalitarian and happier than straight relationships—and our relationships are also less sexually restrictive, which might have something to do with that egalitarian happy shit we seem to have cornered the market on.
Anyway, this letter from a straight reader—a straight reader who has carefully and thoughtfully embraced my "radical promiscuous values" and is now happier in her marriage as a result—arrived on Friday during Peter and Scott's little press conference. Enjoy.
I've been married for 12 years and with my husband for 17 total, with two elementary-age kids. We try to get away alone at least once a year, and due to many weather-related flight cancellations and thwarted plans, my husband booked an all-inclusive, cheesy resort at the last minute. Being a snob, I only went very grudgingly, and of course everything he did in the next 24 hours irritated the hell out of me.
Then he suggested we meet up with another couple and fool around.
I'd never been with a woman before, but I'm kind of androgynous in my thinking, and have always been open to it—even turned on. I understand how sex without novelty is like a little death. And while, for women especially, we can usually keep ourselves busy enough/ plugged-in enough/ tired enough that we are content with a low-level strum of sexual happiness. But I think that men's bodies drive them (for decades) to reproduce—thus the physical drive for sex. Why else would sperm keep being produced? Or eggs? Why would a sexy (especially young & "fertile") stranger turn us on?
I considered my husband's idea, and agreed. Already last year we put up a profile for such activities. I've even surprised him with reservations to a sex party, where we did some soft swapping. We've also visited a tantric sex "therapist" who facilitated mind-blowing sex. All within the arc of our covenant.
After days of communication with the other couple, and then several hours of pleasantries and uncertainties (I understand now why you suggest a sexless meeting first!), we went back to the couples' room, jumped in their cheesy "lovers pool," and took part in a lopsided full swap.
I made no promises for contact with the other wife's husband (though he made it clear this would have been a celebrated bonus to the night), the sheer illicit joy of it all was more fun than I could have expected. I was passionately desired/cared for, felt in control and connected to my husband, and got horny as hell (with the help of cocktail or three). We won't meet up with them again—the guy was a little emotionally intense in person—but we still had a blast. Our next step will likely be fostering a longer-term relationship with a hot, artsy couple closer to home.
I'm intrigued that men thrill at the idea of monogamish behavior, but in the heat of a healthy, supportive encounter the women seem to be in control—whether from negotiation, comfort level, whatever. It forces women (acculturated to be mostly ambivalent about sex) to make decisions about what they want.
All of this was last week. Each day since, my husband has looked at me like I'm a goddess, massaged my feet every night, has been turned on every night, and after years of stalling on getting a vasectomy, is making plans to do so.
So I'm writing you to say thanks. You helped us get to this place. Granted, we took it a little fast, but within the supportive environment I treasured the experience.
But, finally, my main point: the husband's so grateful and overwhelmed, I'm feeling a tsunami of love from him. It's a beautiful thing to see. After such an infusion of sexuality, vitality and pleasure, I see how ordinary monogamy in a long marriage can potentially dull the spirit. Without becoming monogamish, we would have also been fine. But my husband also probably would've understood those "Take my wife, please!" jokes, and I probably would continue his view his desire as another thing I had to find time for in the day. If we move forward in a safe, informed manner, I'm excited for a life of enthusiasm, fully committed parenting, and self-confidence.
I appreciate the work you do and especially the way you stand up for children when parents are trying to make long-term relationships work.
Sexy Woman Into Novel Games
You're welcome, SWING—and go fuck yourself, Peter.