Commercial Coupling: The Business of Swing


One couple, Shawna and Frank Garguilo, run a food-importing business in Arizona. They take an average of three swinging vacations a year.

"You know, there's a lot of people that are into Lifestyles. More than people think," said Shawna Garguilo. "It's your neighbors."

Her husband, Frank, readily agreed.

"You know what amazes me?" he asked. "The vast variety of people that are attracted to it -- that participate in it. It's every walk of life. It's casino host, to blackjack dealers, to drivers, to lawyers, to professionals, to Internet gurus -- there's everybody here, and the lifestyle does not target one separate economic distinction or professional distinction. It covers everybody."

"The biggest thing that we enjoy is that people are down to earth. There are no barriers to try to break through to start a conversation and meet new people," he said. "That's the No. 1 thing besides the fun that goes along with it. We've been to both a Lifestyles-type and then followed up with it on an ordinary-type vacation, and the experience was so different and so disappointing."

Tony and Joleen Morales have been in the swing lifestyle for 15 years. They were high school sweethearts who married at 19. Like many of the other couples at Desire, they radiated a sense of happiness. They described basically stumbling upon the lifestyle.

"It was probably about nine or 10 years into the marriage. We kind of got curious," said Joleen Morales.

Her husband, Tony, explained how it happened.

"We were watching something on TV, and I don't know, it was something about the lifestyle or whatever it was, and I said, 'What do you think of that?' And she looked at me and said, 'You think about that too?!'"

A visit to a the resort's grand opening in early November offered a wide variety of couples and a shocking display of sex around every bend and on every cushion -- an incredible display of sexual openness.

Tony Morales said it can initially be shocking for those considering getting involved in the lifestyle.

"It can be very frightening for somebody who's not done it before, and they can come in with preconceived notions of what they think it is going to be like," he said. "They are not necessarily prepared for what's happening before their eyes because they already have in their heads what it should have been like. And it's not always the same thing."

His wife agreed.

"Jealousy sometimes comes up as an issue," said Joleen Morales.

Sleeping With Others, But Doing It 'Together'

The Moraleses said that getting involved in the swing lifestyle is only for the strongest of couples. Only those firmly rooted in their commitment to one another can handle sex outside of the marriage, they said.

When discussing the lifestyle, many couples at the resort had the air of people who harbor a great secret to health and longevity.

The Garguilos said that it all started for them during their honeymoon, and their relationship has only grown stronger ever since.

"We respect each other. It's a fun thing, it's a new thing," said Shawna Garguilo. "I believe that it keeps our relationship alive in a lot of ways. There's a lot of people that are married that go out and cheat on each other. Why? We can do it together.

"I am with my husband. I know what he is doing. I am here. I'd rather him and me have a relationship that we can share things like that together, instead of trashing our marriage and going different ways."

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