There are certain rules and conduct within the Lifestyle.  Swinging isn't only about sex.  It is about a community
of people that care a lot about not stigmatizing the act of sex.  Swingers are not cheaters.  Swinging is not illegal
in most US jurisdictions.  (Check your local state, county and city ordinances on Adultery and Fornication laws.)   
The only societal hangup is the moral issue...and that comes down to your personal beliefs or feelings
There are several sites that cover the moral ground of the Lifestyle (they will be referenced at the bottom of this
page).


Rules

The golden rule in the Lifestyle is "No means NO!"  This is the mantra of the Lifestyle.  This is particularly
important to single males who wish to Swing.  Respecting everyone is paramount and maintaining a good
comfort level is imperative.  Pushy, arrogant, or pompous people will not last long in the Lifestyle.  We are a very
close-knit community and your word-of-mouth reputation goes a long way.

Anyone (yourself included) may say no at any time for any reason, without further explanation.  If you’re in a
situation that makes you uncomfortable, just say
NO!  Don’t jeopardize your joy and satisfaction with the Lifestyle
- or that of your partner - by doing anything against your will.  Don’t submit to guilt or pressure.  Swinging is fun.  
Keep it that way.  Disentangle yourself as quickly as possible with a firm, but gentle response.  Be honest but up-
front in order to avoid misunderstandings.

Always be kind.  First and foremost.  It’s the proper, humane way to behave.  Secondly, you may reconsider and
want to party with them later.  Keep your options open.

Everyone has been rejected at some time.  If you’re rejected do NOT take personal offense.  Keep the encounter
upbeat and light.  Who knows?  The person who passes up the opportunity today, may want to play with you
tomorrow, or may be the key to you meeting another terrific partner!

Know your own likes, dislikes, boundaries and strengths, thoroughly.  Encourage and aid others in their own
explorations.  Keep relationships friendly and pleasant.  Always propose, never impose!  Swingers feel their way
through encounters in more than one way.  Open all channels of communication.

Deal with jealousy head-on!  It’s a normal, human reaction.  Learn what triggers jealousy in yourself and in your
partner.  Then work things out.  This may mean modifying certain activities, curtailing others or finding new
means of sexual expression.  Festering jealousies are destructive.  Seek constructive remedies as soon as
possible.

Let your steady partner know he or she is always number one!  Take time to stroke their ego.  Be generous with a
kiss and a smile.  Touch bases with each other often, so that you both feel secure.  Always arrive together.  Honor
any and all prior understandings.  Always leave together.

Use common sense and courtesy when you’re at a swing club, a meeting place, or someone’s house.  
Concentrate on being kind, thoughtful and sensitive and smile.  Happiness is contagious!

Respect the guidelines others set, and make your own wishes and desires clear.  There should be no surprises!  If
you’re
Bi for example, ask if the couple or single you have chosen has a similar interest.  Likewise, if you really
object to
Greek or Bondage, bring it up for discussion.  Once you’re all comfortable with the format, let the games
begin.

Before, during and after you party, pay close attention to “Body Language.”  There’s more to human interaction
than just sexual signals, but that’s definitely part of the picture.  Enhance your romance by considering the total
person.  Learn to read the signs and you’ll pick up on what makes your partner comfortable, happy, excited, and
ultimately satisfied.

DISCRETION IS PARAMOUNT IN THE SWING COMMUNITY!    Who you see, what you see and what you and
everyone else does, MUST remain private.  Never, never discuss details with anyone not intimately involved.  
Promoting the Lifestyle is wonderful.  Publicizing it is unforgivable.

Demand absolute discretion...and be worthy of the same!

Remember:  Although the Lifestyle is about having fun with sex, it doesn't mean that it is ONLY about sex.  
Attraction, chemistry and social graces mean a lot to being successful with other couples and singles.



Truths and Pitfalls

A good friend of ours put to words so eloquently some general truths and observations about the Lifestyle.  
These are put here in a very blunt and raw form so you will understand that the Lifestyle is not always such a
perfect place.  Below are his observations and comments:


     Altogether too often, when a new couple first decides to dip their toe in the open sexuality water, many of
    the more experienced Swingers that they meet earnestly respond to the questions of the newbies by
    pumping them full of the polite lies we tell each other about the lifestyle.  Among the ones that most newbies
    hear, and many believe, are:

    1.  Most couples start as soft-swap  (Demonstrably untrue.)

    2.  Most women in the Lifestyle are bi-sexual  (Many Lifestyle women are bisexual, a much larger fraction
    enjoy some occasional play as part of the scene, and a significant fraction feel pressured to participate in bi-
    play.)

    3.  Swingers are much less likely to cheat on their spouses than vanillas  (Can't say for certain of the
    comparison, but I know of a lot of cheating that goes on in the lifestyle.)

    4.  Swingers are open-minded  (Yeah, right...I think a larger fraction of Swingers than vanillas might be pretty
    open minded, but a lot of them are just horny people that like to f*ck.)

    5.  "We seek friends first."  (Hmmm, if I had a nickel for everybody that says that...this is true only if you
    define "Friend" as someone that on first meeting, after two drinks you are best buddies and ready to f*ck.)

    6.  Swingers all have great marriages.  (That ignores a big fraction that joined to try to fix problems in their
    marriages...some of which actually have some success with this approach.)

    7.  Everyone tests for STD's regularly  (Yeah, sure.)

    8.  People always use condoms  (Most people insist that they use condoms, and a startling number will try
    to sneak it in without condoms when you combine group play, dark room, and alcohol.)

    9.  Lifestyle people are just sweet, friendly people  (MANY, I would say MOST are...but there are also quite a
    few very predatory Swingers with agendas, and many of those purposely prey on newbies.)

    10.  Swingers are never sexually jealous  (How many single females have learned to their chagrin that this is
    not actually true?)

    The TRUTH that we should be telling new people is that Swinging can be a lot of fun if they are emotionally
    able to handle it...but Swingers, by and large, are like any other large group of people.  Some good, some
    not so good, some will lie, cheat and steal; some will give you the shirt off their back, as well as the thong off
    their crotch.  And while Swinging can be a great deal of fun, always have your own voice to say "NO THANK
    YOU" when something is not what YOU want.

    Ultimately, Swinging is what the individual makes of it, and they need to keep their eyes open and realize
    that not all Swingers have their best interests at heart.


While we agree with our friends observations, we don't want this to be something to dwell on.  We just felt it was
important to let folks know that bad things (and people) exist in just about every social environment.  The
Lifestyle is no exception.  Thank you, Michael, for your words of wisdom.



References

The North American Swing Club Association (NASCA) has a great FAQ on swinging.

If you want to see what the higher-learning institutions have to say about their studies on the Lifestyle, see
Institute for Advanced Study of Human Sexuality.