Uninhibited? Perhaps this is the term we should use to replace the word swinger.
We have spoken before about how the term ‘swinger’ is outdated. Today, the word swinger has a negative connotation which dates back to the 1970s. Swingers are no longer a part of the key club culture and they also gave up their huckapoo shirts and nylon slacks decades ago. The word swinger seems to conjure up an image of older folks groping each other and partaking in massive, hairy orgies. It is for this reason, that finding a new word to replace the word “swinger” seems necessary.
The term open-minded has been suggested and we have discussed this as well. It seems like a good option but today we would like to consider the word “uninhibited.”
The word uninhibited, according to the free dictionary means the following:
1. not inhibited or restricted; unhampered.
2. not restrained by or mindful of social convention or usage; free; candid or spontaneous.
When a friend suggested this term I thought, bingo! This is exactly the word I would use to describe swingers. Although many vanilla people think swingers are wild, reckless and depraved, the word uninhibited exudes a much clearer image of who swingers really are.
Swingers are the first to argue that they are, for the most part, no different from anyone else. The central difference between swingers and their vanilla friends is their desire to enjoy sex with more than one person.
Swingers have the ability to let loose and experiment sexually with other people in ways we have always been taught were wrong. We either learned this from our parents or our religion. Sex was intended to take place only between a married couple. Not between two women, not between two men and certainly not with a multitude of partners. We grew up learning to be modest and to cover up our bodies (especially women).
While these teachings were consistent with generations of the past, with the decline of religion over the past decade or so, and with the Baby Boomers now parents and grandparents, we have seen a shift in many people’s moral compass. People are more open to new ideas and beliefs, which has in turn led people to a more open-minded way of thinking.
Interestingly enough, even with the more relaxed attitudes we see today, swingers remain outcasts. It has become both common and acceptable to reveal to friends, family and coworkers your sexual orientation as well as your gender identity, but it is still not acceptable to be a swinger.
If society refuses to accept swingers, perhaps the best course of action is to change the word associated with swinging. In order to change the mind set, the most logical thing to do is to change the word. Take for example the word stripper. We no longer refer to women as strippers. Exotic dancer has become the new term. The name is chic and no longer elicits an image of vaudeville days with trashy women wearing tassels on their breasts. The term exotic dancer, although it means exactly the same thing as stripper, paints a much more palatable image of a beautiful woman dancing in a club.
As swingers, if we were to change the terminology to simply say that we are uninhibited adults, this would erase the image of bunch of old, out of shape people engrossed in an orgy. For vanilla people, the term will imply little more than an individual who is open to new thoughts and ideas. People who are uninhibited are not prudish or uptight. If people truly are uninhibited, they would be open to the notion of swinging but may or may not partake. This would allow us the freedom to let the world know that we are unconventional or free thinking. It does not say anything about us sexually. It simply invites open conversations between adults who are uninhibited like ourselves.
Swingers must take the initiative to help change the stigma attached to living this lifestyle. Acknowledging to others that you are uninhibited gives away little about your lifestyle. I truly believe that if the word swinger was abolished, many people who are actually swinging, although they claim that is not what they are doing, would readily admit that they are uninhibited. This would help build the community while at the same time helping swingers to be accepted for their lifestyle choices. After all, telling people that you are uninhibited does not really tell them precisely what you are doing.