The very first time I entered a swingers club, I was single. Granted, John and I were dating at the time, but technically I WAS single…and I WAS nervous! After all, I had never been inside a “sex” club. Oh boy, a sex club. What was I getting myself into?
Yes, the swingers club was colette, and because John and I were dating, it made sense that I would be visiting one of his clubs for my “maiden” voyage. I had looked at pictures of the club online and have to admit, I was really surprised at how cool it looked. I can’t remember exactly what my imagination had conjured up, but it definitely didn’t match the photos on the website. The club not only appeared to be decorated with upscale furniture, but the layout of the conversation/bar area mirrored any high-end night club. Now I was even more intrigued!
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Okay, so I cleared the first hurdle safely and successfully. The club website and interior had piqued my interest enough that visiting the club seemed like a plausible option. The next hurdle, which really wasn’t all that difficult, was shopping. There aren’t too many women who don’t enjoy a leisurely stroll through the mall. Yes, I had a closet full of dresses, but I didn’t have one for a wild and crazy night out on the town. I was going to get the chance to spread my wings and wear something which made me feel sexy!
Oh boy, this was going to be harder than I thought. When it actually came to trying on all the sexy, short, barely-there dresses I had bravely gathered in the dressing room, I was overcome with doubt. Could I really pull off wearing something like this? What did this dress say about me? Was I trying too hard? Ugh! I wanted so desperately to be sexy, yet I realized I wasn’t even sure I felt comfortable with my own sexiness.
But I persevered. I made myself pick out a dress. I have to admit, I was rather proud of myself. I had shelved my fear and doubt in exchange for a moment of power. Next on the list was shoes. I love shoes. I’ll buy a pair of shoes that go with only one outfit…this is my obsession. The sexy dress I had just purchased had given me a sense of adventure and courage so finding the shoes was a bonus. I waltzed into the shoe store and picked out a pair of the highest heeled shoes I’ve probably ever owned in my entire life! Take that, doubt!
I was beginning to like this “stepping outside the box” kind of mentality! It was like suddenly I was someone else. Someone who wanted to be seen. Someone who wasn’t afraid. Someone giddy with excitement for this new adventure. This visit to the club was going to be amazing and I was ready!
The night finally arrived. I had my dress laid out on the bed along with a cute clutch purse and an array of jewelry just waiting for adornment. What was that? What was that feeling I was getting in the pit of my stomach? Oh no, I was nervous again! Oh great, now I think I look ridiculous. Who am I kidding in these platform heels and this short dress? You’re far to refined and respectable to allow yourself such silly frivolity. Thanks ego! I really appreciate those self defeating comments. Now I feel dumb. Now I don’t want to go. Now I’m scared of what people will think of me.
Cue the mini breakdown. There I was in the hotel room, sitting with John on the side of the bed, tears streaming down my face. Thank goodness I had such a loving, understanding and patient partner. John stopped what he was doing and reassured me that everything was going to be okay, that I didn’t look ridiculous…I looked beautiful and nothing was going to happen that I couldn’t handle. I was strong and powerful and quite capable of handling this. He was right of course. I could handle this, I just had to remind myself (and my ego) that I was in charge.
OMG…the club was AMAZING! I had never done anything even remotely close to this before. I walked in all nervous and not knowing what to expect, other than some outlandish imagined story that had me entering the club and being drug to the back somewhere and made to perform some sex act.
It’s astonishing to me how vibrant my imagination can be. I was NOT knocked down and drug by my hair to a secret back room nor was I made to perform any sex acts. I did, however, get to hang out at the bar and meet the most incredible people. I’m almost embarrassed to admit that I was surprised at how “normal” the patrons were. The club was a collection of society. Some of the couples were new to the club and some had been attending for years. I even met some single men. One man in particular grabbed my attention, and I spent a fair amount of time visiting with him at the bar. Not only that, but they had regular jobs. Go figure! These people were intelligent and funny and completely in love with the lifestyle. Looking back, I couldn’t have imagined a better example of successful relationships which to emulate than from all the people within the club.
My outfit, the one I was so sure was too much, or in this case too revealing, was perfect. I felt sexy and beautiful and respected. Not only did I feel beautiful, but I was made to feel beautiful by everyone in the club. No one was manhandling me or making any unwelcome gestures or movements towards me. This club was so dramatically different from a regular night club, I knew from this first visit that I was safe. I was safe in a swingers club. Another myth blown!
When I think back to that first visit, I realize how little I knew about the world of swinging. Society had impressed my view of those involved in this lifestyle. It was only when I had the fortitude to test this view for myself did I recognize the skewed narrative. Not only were the people who attended these clubs genuine and compassionate, they also fostered a safe environment. As a single woman, if you want an uber safe place in which to let your hair down, a swingers club is the perfect destination. You’ll be enveloped by a community of couples and other singles who approach each other with respect, communication, trust, empathy and compersion. These people want you to be happy. They want you to feel safe in exploring your sexuality. There’s no room for judgement or dishonesty in a swingers club. There is, however, room for diversity, acceptance and unicorns!
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John and Jackie Melfi are in a consensually non monogamous marriage. They have been featured in ABC News Nightline Special Report “Getting Naughty In N’awlins”, Inside a New Orleans Swingers Convention, and CNN “This Is Life” with Lisa Ling. The Melfis are the force behind the industry famous colette swingers clubs in New Orleans, Dallas, Houston, and Austin. With over 20 years of combined experience, this powerhouse couple coaches thousands of singles and couples through their award winning blog Openlove101.com.