The 'Lifestyle' -- Real-Life Wife Swaps

ByABC News
September 5, 2006, 11:26 AM

-- On the hit ABC show "Desperate Housewives," cheating destroys marriages because spouses lie and get caught.

But we found couples who say they have found a way to enjoy the company of others without the deception. It's called the "lifestyle," or swinging, an arrangement in which couples have sex with other couples, and there is no secrecy.

Brian and Olga Depenbrock got married four years ago. Now they run a business together, and after work they like to go to a club in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., called Trapeze, which also has branches in Atlanta and Philadelphia.Trapeze looks like other nightclubs, with a dance floor, buffet, bar.

But it's not like other clubs, because in back there's a locker room where couples can get undressed and, if they want, have sex in different bedrooms with other couples -- or watch one another in hot tubs. It's called swinging or the "lifestyle."

Isn't it immoral? Four couples I talked to said no, it's a good thing.

"What we do is not illegal. And I don't believe it's immoral," said Brian.

Chris, who takes part in the lifestyle with his wife, Lavonne, said, "I don't want to be 85 years old, looking back on my life, like, 'Man, I didn't have enough sex in my life.' " Like most of the couples we talked to, Chris and Lavonne didn't want their last names used.

Another swinging couple, Bob and Tess, were college sweethearts. They've been married 19 years, and five years into their marriage they decided to try the lifestyle.

"Tess was the first woman I ever kissed in my whole life. So you always have an innate curiosity about 'How would another woman feel?' I no longer have that curiosity," Bob said.

Swinging was Tess' idea. She heard about it from a girlfriend and was intrigued. She figured their relationship was strong enough to give swinging a try. "You have to be completely open and honest with each other," she said.

Won't they look back at their lives and feel that they ruined the intimacy they had with each other by having sex with all these other people?