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Monday, February 27, 2012

SL Letter of the Day: Who Said Life Was Fair?

Posted by Dan Savage on Mon, Feb 27, 2012 at 10:29 AM

I'm a 37 year-old straight woman, GGG and married for almost 10 years. Before we were married, my husband told me that he wanted to watch me with other men. After several years of discussions about boundaries and rules, I agreed, and I've since played with a few other men, both alone and with my husband. We've both thoroughly enjoyed our play! The problem is that, inevitably, the idea of him playing with another woman, or of both of us with a couple, will come up, and for me it's the opposite of sexy. I panic at the idea of him with another woman. I've always been up front about the rules: he is not allowed to play. I know: "not equal," but I'm more than happy to give up my own freedom if he feels that it's unfair. And we have talked a lot about the fact that seeing me with another man is HIS fantasy, while seeing him with another woman is NOT mine. But I know it doesn't make sense.

I have played with other men and have had no problem keeping my emotions out of it, so why can't I convince myself that he would do the same? Intellectually, I know it's no different and I want him to have fun! But emotionally, I can't wrap my head around it. Adding to my confusion is that he recently played alone with a male friend of ours, someone we have played with together, and I was completely comfortable with it. Rather than being scared, I was happy that he got to have a little adventure and I was glad he got some pleasure out of it. I wasn't turned on by it, but I certainly wasn't turned off and would be comfortable with him doing it again. My play has made me feel, for the first time in my life, attractive and sexy, and although he has never pressured me about this, I would like it if he could get a similar shot of confidence.

So do you have any advice for me about how to take the comfort I felt with him and our male friend and apply it to the idea of him with another woman or should I just accept that I'm doomed to a natural aversion to handing my man to another woman?

He's Often Tethered While I Freely Experiment

My response after the jump...

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Does he mind? Does it bother your husband that you're allowed to do things he isn't allowed to do? Is he dying to sleep with other women?—Dan

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I apologize now for what might be a too-long answer to your questions, but it's an indescribable relief to have SOMEONE to talk to about this. (We live in a very small town and I can't talk with any of my friends about this!)

I think that we were both unprepared for how much I would like my play. When I was a younger woman, I never felt attractive, like, ever. I can look back now and realize that I was, but I was the type of girl who was totally clueless. If I was hit on, I never realized it. And even when I met and married my husband, I was convinced that he was much more attractive than I was and that he was settling for brains over looks. And then, in an attempt to help him realize a fantasy—seeing me with someone else—I put myself out there in a way I never had before, which was easy for the first time because I didn't feel I had anything invested in other mens' response. And it was an enormous boost to my confidence to find that there are lots of men who find me attractive. So I think that seeing what a positive effect this had on me made him wish he could have the same thing... but the thing is, neither of us saw that coming. Being jealous of the other men we were prepared for, although that never materialized. What we weren't expecting was how much fun I would end up having. So I don't think it's the freedom he's looking for so much as the fun.

And I recognize that it's totally unfair. When he encourages me to look for a potential playmate, I do! But he's not allowed to play with anyone else, and even talking about it makes me feel scared and defensive. I don't even like to hear about women he was with before we met. On the other hand, I'm always careful to remind him (gently) that it was never on the table for him and that I still don't have a lot invested in playing with other people so it won't bother me a bit to give it up. The fantasies I want to explore have nothing to do with other people. But if it IS so inconsequential and so easy to give up, why can't I let him have it? If it's such a small part of who I am and what I want that I could easily do without it, then wouldn't it be a small, simple thing to let him have it, too? AAGGH! It's always this same circle!—HOTWIFE

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It's nice that you recognize how totally unfair this situation is and it's swell that you have the decency to feel conflicted about. That speaks well to your character, HOTWIFE. But like you said: seeing you with another man is his fantasy; seeing him with another woman is not yours. If your husband can accept this limitation—if he can cheerfully accept it—then I think you should go ahead and continue to play with other men and that you shouldn't feel too bad about the existentially cosmic unfairness of it all.

In short: take your husband's, "Yes, go for it!" for an answer.

Unless that "yes" comes with a side of guilt. If your husband can take pleasure in your pleasure, if he can enjoy having his hotwife/cuckold fantasies fulfilled, and if not being able to sleep with other women is the price of admission that he's willing pay to have those fantasies fulfilled by you, then you should continue to play with other men.

And you should continue to have the decency feel conflicted about it. Because I'm confident that if you keep thinking about this, HOTWIFE, you'll eventually be able to wrap your head around the idea of your husband playing with another woman. It may take a few years for you to get there—but it took you a few years to get where you are now.

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