Hey guys, had another awesome question come in via Ask Swanky:
My boyfriend and I have been swinging (soft swaps) for over a year. Now he and his ex also swung yet even after she has moved 3000 miles away they have continued to have contact. By contact I mean he has several skype accounts, emails and a Tango account for them to often send dirty photos, videos and tells her of our escapes with other couples. At first I told him to stop buy he assured me that it meant nothing but “visuals” for him and her. She trash talks me in a lot of the conversations with most of the time him having my back. Also from what I’ve read in her emails she can’t seem to get/keep a guy has never had a real relationship, having men only use her for sex. It seems as though my guy was the best she ever had. Yet the relationship wasn’t strong enough for her to stay here, open and him cheating on her. Now mind you my guy and I are always together or working! I know that he is not cheating on me with anyone else but would you consider their cyber thingie cheating! Please help! (This is the short version of the question, a far more detailed question was actually submitted)
Thanks for contacting us and giving us a chance to answer some questions for you. If you have read over our previous replies you may notice we ALWAYS try to open up the eyes of the concerned party to the other person’s point of view. I don’t think we are going to do that here.
There is NO way that anyone would think it is ok to maintain that type of relationship with an ex, lifestyle or not. The ONLY way that would be acceptable is if both of them were still single. Within the lifestyle you will find that a lot of people skype, tango, trade pics etc. It comes down to who is comfortable with what. The people that do this aren’t exes. Friends within the lifestyle are very common, and most of them do text, talk, cam, etc.
If you want to go full swap within the lifestyle, and leave it at that, that is perfectly fine. Some people like to maintain a friendship, or a relationship type of connection. By relationship definition, I don’t think anyone should be falling in love, or even lust…but personal friendship connections are perfectly acceptable. Both people MUST be in agreement on this issue. If you want sex and out, and he wants more, the lifestyle IS NOT going to work. All this is going to do is create an uncomfortable friction that others in the LS will pickup on immediately.
3 things MUST exist to be happy and successful in the lifestyle. Communication. You must discuss wants, needs, rules, etc. Rules. You MUST set ground rules as a couple to abide by or you are asking for a drama filled headache to erupt. Trust. If you have even a slight amount of distrust for whatever reason, stay out of the lifestyle until you get it sorted!
Now to get to the root of your issue. Are you wrong for wanting him to cut ties with his ex? HELL NO. He is in no way, shape, or form committed to you, if he is still sexting with his ex. Regardless of what excuse he feeds you about the lifestyle or open relationships, he is reaching for a way to stay in touch with her. It is completely unacceptable for this type of behavior to be ongoing, especially since you have voiced your disapproval. Being that he is hiding communications from her (pics, sexts, skype chats, etc) and hiding the fact that he is secretly buying her gifts…that is a form of cheating. Cheating isn’t always about sex. If he feels he has to hide it, then he feels like it is wrong.
In this situation I would tell your boyfriend it is time to make a choice. Put your foot down, be firm, and see where he truly stands. There is no room in a healthy relationship for an ex to still be THAT much a part of his life. There is a difference between sexting/texting strangers or someone you just met vs an ex. There is a strong emotional bond there that he is refusing to break.
What do you think guys? Would you consider this cheating? Do you feel we offered the right advice? You know what to do from here.