You Can’t Touch This

One of the things that some swingers pride themselves on is being conscious about obtaining consent. The phrase “No means No” is a mantra often repeated. I have observed this more frequently in the club that Mr Jones and I visit than in more private settings such as house parties or interactions between groups of acquaintances at say a camping weekend. For reasons that I am still formulating Mr Jones and I have not attended the private gathering type of swinger event for several years but recently we became acquainted with a couple who are a prominent feature of this kind of socialising and we have found ourselves flung back into the mix.

It is an interesting time as we are experienced but at the same time, we find ourselves acting a little bit like newbies. Sometimes we are unsure of how to act, what to expect when we turn up at someone’s house and what is expected of us. Some of the people we are encountering are people we have known for a long time and others are people who have been ‘in the scene’ but we have somehow not met. Whatever the case we found ourselves at an end of Summer Toga party recently. The hosts had gone to great effort to make their house look the theme and it was amazing. Much alcohol was consumed and there was a lot of flirting.

Flirting is often accompanied by what many people would consider foreplay. Extended kissing, stroking of body parts like breasts and perhaps a little fondling of genitals. I had interactions like this with several of the people present and most of them were pleasant as they were with men I would have taken things further with. However there was one man present who I didn’t want to go there with. I am certain the feeling was reciprocated. I won’t go into the history but there is a bit.

On this particular evening Mr Obnoxious was quite drunk. Other people who knew him better than me said they had never seen him that drunk. Quite early in the evening he had occasion to brush against me because I was sitting where he had left his phone. He said, “I am sorry,” to which I replied, “Are you?”

This is a response which I sometimes use with students who are annoying me with bad behaviour. It is a challenge to them to consider their behaviour for more than a millisecond and not just excuse themselves with a false politeness. The awkwardness I felt around him made me defensive. He clearly didn’t feel the same way because he took my comment in a flirty way and proceeded to grope my boobs. I didn’t quite know how to deal with that and so in the way of too many women everywhere I said nothing. During the rest of the evening there were another couple of times that he took the opportunity to put his hands on my boobs. Clearly he liked them. He never considered asking if this was OK with me or even really spoke to me. In such an alcohol and sex charged environment it was hard to formulate a response that wouldn’t cause a scene and result in me looking like the one with a problem. The other women seemed to treat his behaviour as cute if they weren’t interested or go with it if they were.

The next day as Mr Jones and I discussed the events of the evening his behaviour was a prominent topic. We agreed that his touching of me was not appropriate. Up to that point I wasn’t completely convinced. I still held on to that old chestnut that perhaps I had invited his touching by simply being a woman at a sex event and dressing provocatively. Mr Jones told me that at one point he had tried to tell him to stop but he had been ignored.  

I tried to explain to Mr Jones about the conditioning of women to not say outright no. I tried to make him understand that often I don’t feel that I CAN say no. There is always that little seed of doubt in my mind that says “What if I am wrong? What if I did something to tell him he could even inadvertently? What if I make a fuss and look like an idiot?” Sometimes I am strong and confident and I do tell men like that to fuck off. Right then, at that party, I was not. I felt awkward and unsure of myself. I was not confident of anything about me. I didn’t feel sexy or particularly desirable.

That is not a reflection on anyone there including Mr Jones. That is all on me. Once I would have walked into a situation like that and flirted with and fucked whoever I wanted. I would have thought to hell with the mutterings of others behind my back. 2021 me is not that woman. I have taken pause and listened to some of the mutterings. I have lost that confidence. Sometimes I yearn for the old me. Sometimes I think she was way too arrogant.

In my working life, my principal requires that we set goals every year in a formal review system. We are required to have two professional goals and one “Spiritual Formation”goal I shat out the professional goals without too much difficulty. That kind of “management speak” comes out easily for me. The spiritual goal gave me pause. I don’t want to write “Go to church more” or “seek out opportunities for prayer and reflection”. They sound stupid. Maybe I should write “take steps to improve my confidence in my own worth and abilities.”

Just No

I was recently at a swing club and encountered a man. That in itself is not unusual. It is in fact one of the things that Mr Jones and I go there for. The difference in this case is that I didn’t find him attractive. I knew this as soon as I saw him. Not only did I not find him attractive I also had some instinctive understanding that he wasn’t going to take no for an answer.

Throughout the evening I avoided eye contact with this man. I didn’t want to get into a conversation with him. I knew without experiencing it that he would be pushy and not listen to me when I avoided his advances. In short I just found him a bit creepy. I chatted with other men and found other people who were much more attractive to me.

Later I was in an open play area and I was enjoying myself with another man. He was sitting on a couch naked and I was kneeling in front of him with my mouth on his cock. It was hot, he was enjoying himself and I was enjoying myself. Two consenting adults enjoying themselves in a place where that kind of thing is allowed. I was aware of the creepy guy watching. It wasn’t ideal but it was a public space, he was entitled to watch. As long as he kept to himself.

Of course he didn’t. Creepy people never do. They are constantly trying to find a way to ease themselves into situations where they are not wanted or invited. I heard him asking Mr Jones if he was able to join in. Of course Mr Jones stated that I was in charge of that. I turned and clearly said no to him.

Undeterred he moved to be sitting on the couch a little way down from myself and my new friend. He pulled out his cock and began wanking. Not entirely the most acceptable thing but I ignored him. As long as he kept his hands to himself I was prepared to ignore his transgression.

As it happened Covid restrictions meant my new friend and I were directed to a closed room. I don’t know what the difference would be but hey, we adjourned and continued with our fun.

Later I was talking with the club security. He apologised for moving us. In pre-Covid times giving a man a head job in an open play area was the norm. These days rules say that kind of thing is not allowed. The club’s owners don’t like the rules or think they are sensible but they are also keen to avoid a fine and so enforce them. What was more of a concern to him was the behaviour of the creepy guy. It turned out that he was not prepared to overlook Creepy Guy’s transgression and was only to happy to evict him.

As I suspected he did not go willingly. He refused to understand that what he had done was not acceptable. No amount of explaining could convey why creepiness was not OK. To make matters worse he accused the security man of being racist. It is true that Creepy Guy was not Caucasian like myself, Mr Jones, our friend and the security man but that was not the reason why we found him creepy. He was just creepy.

At the end of the day no-one likes being rejected. It is unpleasant and can be painful. But pushing things can lead to situations where you have to hear even less pleasant things about yourself. If a person says No it really is best to just accept it and walk away.

This post is part of Wicked Wednesday prompt #441 Unrequited Love. Click on the image to see who else is being Wicked.

TMI Tuesday – Take a Picture it Lasts Longer

Another week. Another Tuesday. You know what that means…

1. Do you post sexy pics of yourself on your blog? Why?

EERRRM yes. Why? Because I can. Because it makes me feel good. And because there are a bunch of people out there who like to look. So without any further ado

Another reason I post the occasional pic is because I want to put some images of real women onto the internet. We aren’t all perfectly shaped.

2. Have you ever had sex when you suspected security cameras might be present but the passion was too hot to stop or care about being caught on video?

Mr Jones was a security technician in a previous career. Sometimes he still does that kind of work. The first few times I had sex in the secret sex hang out I considered that he may have installed a camera for his viewing pleasure. He assures me that he hasn’t done that but to be honest it would be kind of hot if he did.

3. Have you ever had sex knowing full well you were being filmed or pics were being taken?

Mr Jones DID set up a camera to record our wedding night. That was back in the days of VCRs. Somehow during a move the video disappeared, or got taped over. It was a great tragedy.

Since then we have taken pictures during sex especially play sessions. As I have described in a previous TMI there was a recording on a USB card of myself and Mr Fix it that also met an unfortunate end.

4. When it comes to sex, to which do you most relate–being an exhibitionist or a voyeur?

My go to has been exhibitionism. I love being watched. A long term fantasy is to be surrounded by people who are watching me have sex. During the session various onlookers are invited by Mr Jones to participate but those who are not invited are masturbating.

Having said that I am not against watching. I recently watched a woman on her knees surrounded by three men who she was pleasuring in turn. She was so wild and free and so hot.

5. Have you ever sneakily or overtly filmed or taken pics of others having sex? What did you do with the evidence?

For me consent is everything. I can’t in good conscience record something so intimate without permission. So the answer to this question is No.

Bonus: Hot or not–having sex in front of people?

My response to number 4 kind of answers this question. But there is the question of consent. In the past I have had sex in swing clubs and at parties in full view of all participants. I love it. The people watching love it. Everyone is happy.

Mr Jones and I have also been known to have sex in other public places like rest areas on the side of highways. In these situations there isn’t anyone in the immediate area watching or being exposed to our shenanigans but there is always the risk. Which is what makes it so hot. Sometimes there are people in the distance who can see what is happening if they choose to look. Also adds to the level of excitement.

However my responsible adult has developed since those days, some of them not that long ago. Teaching teenagers about consent and reading some posts by May at Sex Matters has made me think about this in a different light. Those onlookers didn’t consent before our R rated act was thrust upon them. While they don’t necessarily mind, no one actually asked them. Which is our bad really.

Blurred Lines

The thing about swinging is that it opens doors. Doors to fantasies that you didn’t know you had, doors to understandings about people and relationships that vanillas never have, doors to a world where a lot of things are OK even though the vanilla world thinks it is not.

This world can be very liberating. When you step through that door you are taking yourself to a place where a lot of the regular rules don’t apply. Expression of your sexuality is allowed. Even if it isn’t exactly everyone else’s cup of tea. The general attitude expressed by most people in this world is that as long as everyone is consenting then everything is good.

In the regular world there are rules about this. A person in a relationship is clearly out of bounds to everyone else. Outsiders think that the swinging world abolishes this rule completely. That everyone is available to everyone if there is attraction. The truth is not quite that simple.

Yes people in relationships can be free to explore other people they are not in a relationship with. Yes people can have multiple sexual relationships, even multiple romantic relationships. Is everybody happy with the situation all the time? In a word, no. The key word is, as it is in the vanilla dating world, consent.

In the vanilla world consent is pretty clear. It is about one person saying yes to another. Once you get into non-monogamy consent becomes complex. The two people getting naked together might be all good and ready to say an enthusiastic yes but there are other people in the picture, others who have a stake in what is going to happen. Consent must be given by them as well.

Of course that doesn’t mean that the intending couple get naked and then sit down and phone all of their current partners to ensure that there is informed consent. In these situations consent may have been discussed beforehand, eg as they dress to go to the party or even as they make the decision to embark on opening their bed to others. Consent in these situations can be like a long term permission, not a case by case basis.

But life is not black and white. There is ALWAYS an exception, situations NEVER play out exactly as you expect and you frequently find yourself dealing with the result of the unexpected or the unplanned.

For example a situation I found myself in recently. Mr Jones and I attended a swinger’s weekend where we made some lovely new friends. In fact you can read about it here. The weekend was organised by an experienced couple through a group of swingers. It wasn’t publicly advertised. To be in the group you had to be “in the scene” so to speak and be referred by someone. One of the couples we met had an interesting dynamic. Mr introduced Mrs as very new but himself as experienced in the past. On the first evening alcohol was consumed, Mrs seemed happy to participate and get her toes wet. Everything was going swimmingly.

The next day she was more reserved. The real statement was when eight people got into the spa and she was the only one wearing a swimsuit. On the second night as cocktails were consumed and the party heated up Mr and Mrs retired to bed, stating they had partied too hard the night before.

A few weeks later Mr contacted me. The reality of the situation became a little clearer. They were not, as we thought, a married couple. In fact they are not even living together. Not that much of an issue except he admitted to me that Mrs really only expresses herself that way when she has been drinking.

This admission only came out after some flirting and a clear statement on his part that he found me attractive and definitely wanted to take things further. Here is the blurred line. I have the required consent to go and fuck most of the men I encounter. I think this man does not. But he has not stated this. He is clear that he wants Mrs to enjoy the delights of our world but she isn’t confident. How much encouragement should Mr Jones and I give? How much of this situation is him trying to “encourage” her to a place where he can be out and about? I got into a situation like this once before. Pet did not have consent from Mrs Pet to be with me. The contortions he went through to make that situation happen were interesting to say the least.

In the end he and Mrs Pet did not make it. I guess his single minded pursuit of women out of his reach contributed to that but really the danger signs were there in the beginning. The point is that it is hard to tell where the line is when it comes to consent of other partners when finding your way around the swinging world. Most of the time you are relying on people to tell the truth. Most of the time they do, but sometimes they don’t.

Pet never really lied about the way things were between him and Mrs Pet. He just manipulated the situation slightly. I don’t think my new friend is really lying to me about his girlfriend. He hasn’t suggested a meeting between the two of us and maybe his isn’t thinking about that. I honestly don’t know. Which links back to the issue of having to rely on people telling the truth.

Mr Jones and I are honest. About everything. It is the secret to our success. If you want to call what we have as success. But I can’t expect everyone to have that standard. Experience has taught me that many people struggle to be honest. In the end it is safe to say that freely given, informed and enthusiastic consent is difficult to obtain from everyone in this world.

I said No!

I recently read a post by Ophelia outlining some experiences she had involving being raped by men one of whom she considered to be a very good friend. In both situations there was no violence, nor did the men consider that coercing a woman into having sex simply by not accepting no and sneaking their dick into her vagina was wrong.

I am fortunate that I have not had an experience where I felt as violated as Ophelia. But I think there is not a woman on the planet who has not agreed to sex with a man, based purely on her desire but simply because she got tired of the nagging and saying yes was easier than enforcing her initial no. It can be argued that many women are not very good at saying no and I am a very vocal supporter of the idea that mothers have just as much responsibility to teach their daughters to say “no” clearly and confidently as they do to teach their sons about respecting “no”. In the past I have been privately very critical of women who give out mixed messages and then complain about men who don’t get the hint. I try very hard to be honest and up front with my partners and many of them have commented on how easy it makes life to know where they stand. Recently however I had an experience that made me question my approach.

I met The Fireman initially through an online dating website. We chatted but nothing came to pass until I became part of a Facebook group he was hosting. He was a very sexy guy and I was definitely very keen. We met up a couple of times and the future looked full of fun times and fantasies being fulfilled. However he turned out to be, putting it kindly, a bit of a flake. Plans always seemed to be massaged, Mr Jones and I were left waiting in bars, and on one occasion fully stood up. As time went by he seemed to lose interest and I moved on. Then out of the blue, he was back again. The conversation went something like this;

F (Fireman): Hey guys

G (Gemma ): Hello

F: sends dick pic -do you miss him, he misses you

G: Oh a penis (I resisted the urge to add “how cute” )

F: I love your mind and your sexy body. Do you miss me? 

G: I did a while back. It has been a while (again I showed restraint and didn’t add that last time we met it had taken him so long to get his shit together and turn up that our play time had to be cut short to about an hour) 

F: sorry Hun (OMG! I am sooo not your Hun) I have been busy with my business

At this point I mentioned a couple of Facebook posts that seemed to indicate he had a girlfriend for a while, something he denied, but I didn’t believe him. I asked him what he was looking for and he said a regular threesome/ hotwife arrangement. He has a thing for that role play and although he has the body for it his cock is not anywhere up to specification. So I said “we have a regular play buddy at the moment” which is the truth

F: oh 😢 I guess I missed the boat. Is there room for another?

G: No we are happy with what we have right now, sorry. 

There was a bit more to the conversation because he wanted to be petulant and comb through reasons etc. I resisted the urge to vent about his flakiness and lack of respect for my time but I stood my ground quietly and honestly. In the end he said thank you for your Homestay and wished me well. I thought that was that .

I was wrong. In the couple of weeks that followed he contacted me every few days saying hello and making conversation. There was never an actual request for sex but he was blatant,y trying to get in my good books. I resisted the initial urge to be rude because I believe very firmly that being rude just creates unnecessary bad karma. I was also clinging to the misguided idea that I had made my position clear and he knew where he stood.

Of course I was wrong. After a few weeks when he felt that he had charmed me enough he again asked for sex. When I reminded him that I had told him he wasn’t interested he relied with ” but I thought you were”. Why? Because I replied when he messaged me? Because I told him that the posey, staged photos he was sending me were not the best way to impress people? Because I was polite? I was irritated enough to be quite blunt with him, I maintained my resolve to not be rude but I made sure my reply pointed out some of his flakiness in detail and very clearly in kindergarten language said “we are not interested”.

Of course this is not as dramatic as the events Ophelia described but is quite typical of the way a lot of men, particularly those who consider themselves attractive, operate. It is like they have some kind of filter in their ear that translates all of the negative responses they hear into a signal which says “I am really interested, you just have to chase a bit more”. I am sorry but no! When I say no, it means no. I am the mother of a teenage boy and I am also an educator of teenagers. I have made it part of my life mission to educate the young people in my charge about consent. The best description is this video that compares sex to tea.

It is easy for people to understand when someone doesn’t want tea you can’t force them to drink it. The thing the video can’t make clear is that trying to change a persons mind after they have said no is a version of forcing them to drink the tea. Like all the other versions of forcing them to drink the tea it is not OK. As humans we have a responsibility to accept no for an answer. We also have a responsibility to protect the integrity of the no response by using it in a very clear, straightforward way. By this I mean not being that person who says no when they mean yes or the one who encourages the chase by saying no initially.  It is not a simple thing to solve but coercing people less powerful than us, usually women, into sex has to stop! 

When I say no it means no.