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The couple I would like to have a threesome with has a kid, and I am beanplating.
November 29, 2012 9:20 PM   Subscribe

The couple I would like to have a threesome with has a kid, and I am beanplating.

Last year I asked this question. Since then, I've had a couple of awesome experiences! Thanks mefites!
Now I've been chatting with a couple who seem awesome - and appear to have a kid (from their profile, and from a pic of them both that they sent me that includes what looks to be their daughter). I'm kind of embarrassed; I know that plenty of swingers have kids, and that they're adults etc. etc. - and I don't disapprove! I just had a moment on seeing the picture of, oh, possible source of drama and higher stakes. I do like the sound of these people though. Am I being silly? Is there anything in particular I'd need to do/talk about first that I might not need to with a childless couple?
Good grief I cannot believe I'm asking this, my life is so different now :)
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (37 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
 
No. The kid is their responsibility, not yours. People with kids are allowed to have sex. You are allowed to have sex with people who have kids. There is nothing wrong with any element of this.

You are way overthinking this. There is no problem here. Even if there was a problem, it would not be your problem.

Have fun!
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 9:26 PM on November 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


I don’t see anything inherently wrong with the fact that they have a child, and certainly nothing that has to do with you.

However, I would also trust your gut on this one, aka: if drama springs up and it involves the child in any way, bail. You don't want to be a part of their parenting/relationship issues.

But that is a rare case, really, there is no reason for you to have anything to do with the child unless interacting with him/her it is agreed upon by all parties involved.
posted by Shouraku at 9:28 PM on November 29, 2012


It's a little weird that they sent you a picture of their kid, in my book, but anyway, them being parents is not big deal. Plenty of parents are swingers. If anything, they may have a stronger commitment to each other and more clear communication/ideas about how to manage swinging in a healthy way.

Go for it!
posted by latkes at 9:31 PM on November 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


I just had a moment on seeing the picture of, oh, possible source of drama and higher stakes.

Usually means stay away.
posted by Ironmouth at 9:39 PM on November 29, 2012 [10 favorites]


Trust your gut.
posted by KokuRyu at 9:50 PM on November 29, 2012 [6 favorites]


Maybe your reaction isn't because they have a kid, but because they included their kid in the mix by sending that family photo?
posted by zippy at 9:52 PM on November 29, 2012 [30 favorites]


If you subtract 2, you still have over 7 billion alternatives.
posted by oceanjesse at 11:07 PM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


Here is my incredibly nuanced and well though-out opinion: They sent you a photo of their kid? That's fucking weird!

But for real, their apparent inability to grasp how behavior should correlate with context raises a red flag for me, too.
posted by jessca84 at 11:10 PM on November 29, 2012 [31 favorites]


I'd recommend against involving yourself with people who have issues with separating different spheres of their lives. I don't' care how sexually liberal you are, don't send uninvited pictures of your kids to random people on the internet you plan on boning. With something like this I would assume you would want to deal with people who have a sound sense of good judgement.
posted by JimmyJames at 11:37 PM on November 29, 2012 [3 favorites]


Sending a pic that includes their kid is not the most common behavior, but is also not necessarily a red flag. Not everyone is super uptight about images of their precious child. It could be as simple as, "yeah, the kid's in this one but I look REALLY hot, so whatever."
Context is also important. They're aware that they're sending it to a single adult female, not to the local sex offender support group.
posted by FeralHat at 12:33 AM on November 30, 2012


Red Flag.

As a former kinkster I can tell you that you do not not not send a picture including a minor child to someone you met online in the context of hooking up for sex.

My honest opinion?

Report them to child services. I have a VERY uneasy feeling here.

I say that knowing full well what kind of trouble this might bring down upon them. I can't in any way imagine how this was innocent or a mistake.

UNLESS - what is the pic file named?

I guess maybe if the pic was "jpeg 639" they maybe could have meant to send you a different photo??

What do you think? Am I catastrophizing this? Any other flags in your communications with them?

I dunno. Keep the possibility of reporting them in your mind until you figure out what to do.

Either way. Don't meet them for sex or especially alcoholic drinks, or in private.

My other thought is this could be a sting operation looking for pedophiles.

It smells so wrong!

Do your best. Be a good human.


Yes. In my experience, you are 100% correct to post this question here.
posted by jbenben at 1:11 AM on November 30, 2012 [5 favorites]


I think you are freaking out over nothing. They sent a picture that includes a child. Was this just a pic of them together, maybe out having fun, or something like that? They're just sharing something about themselves. Maybe they just liked that pic of them, and it happened to include a child. There are a million explanations that do NOT include anything bad.

I think your recommendation to report them to child services is irresponsible in the extreme, given the information we have, jbenben.
posted by Philosopher Dirtbike at 1:45 AM on November 30, 2012 [2 favorites]


Yea that does seem odd. If they seem otherwise normal why not just ask them about it and see how they react? Then go with your gut.
posted by matildatakesovertheworld at 1:45 AM on November 30, 2012 [2 favorites]


I do not have a kid and I am not a swinger, but maybe they included the "happy family" picture in order to prove that they're not crazy axe murderers or anything? Like, "look, we're stable and comfortable with each other and we know what we want out of relationships"? I kind of feel like reporting them to child services is fairly extreme.
posted by olinerd at 2:01 AM on November 30, 2012 [23 favorites]


They probably didn't think anything of sending a family photo. They probably thought it was a good picture of them. It may also mean they are being upfront about who they are and you can expect the kid to be not in the mix, but definitely a factor in their scheduling and probably a topic of discussion and they most likely won't be able to host. The only thing you really need to do extra is be understanding that they may not be available as often and may have cause to cancel.
posted by psycho-alchemy at 2:24 AM on November 30, 2012 [1 favorite]


If I was sending a friend a picture of my husband and I, and we had a kid, I'd most likely send one with the kid in the photo. The photo is a family photo. I think when you're looking for sexual encounters, you like to present a "wholesome" image. What's more wholesome than being a family, in that apple pie kind of way?
posted by Goofyy at 3:45 AM on November 30, 2012


Having an open marriage, even to the extent of one or both of the members being bi, isn't all that kinky so I'd be cautious of applying rules that apply in kink circles to this interaction. This couple could be really vanilla.

And really sending you that photo maybe as simple as wanting to break the ice about the nature of their family.
posted by Mitheral at 5:39 AM on November 30, 2012


I know people who are active in the kink community and who have children. I have never, never, even heard of them including family in new pictures to prospective people. Sharing after trust is established, sure, but it is a huge huge huge red flag. I wouldn't report them to child services on that alone, but it is big trouble all the same. I would say no.
posted by corb at 6:04 AM on November 30, 2012 [1 favorite]


I think that while it's weird and would probably lead me to avoid any encounters with these people, it hardly rises to the level of calling child services.
posted by crankylex at 6:22 AM on November 30, 2012


Okay, sending the pic is just... weird. Very weird. HOWEVER, just so's you know, the vast majority of people in "the lifestyle" (gawd, I hate that term!) are in pretty conventional relationships, often with kids. So the having-a-kid thing itself is practically inconsequential. But letting you know about it - whether via the photo or by some other means - yeah, that's kinda weird.
posted by julthumbscrew at 6:47 AM on November 30, 2012


jbenben's mention of sting makes me think it would be worth your while in a big way to reply to that photo with an email saying very explicitly "I am interested ONLY in adult relationships. The photo you sent was a nice family photo but in this context completely inappropriate. Do not send me pictures of your child or any other child ever again."
posted by headnsouth at 6:54 AM on November 30, 2012 [3 favorites]


unless the child in the photo is nude or doing something sexually suggestive/explicit, I'm really not sure why we would have any reason to believe this is a child porn sting operation or that you need to make a statement to them that you refuse to look at photographs of children.
posted by treehorn+bunny at 7:02 AM on November 30, 2012 [10 favorites]


Jesus christ, please do not report them to any kind of social services!! Depending on where they live, their swingingness could be used against them. You have zero reason to believe they are doing any kind of harm to their child and you could make their lives, and most importantly their child's life, a complete nightmare by getting them investigated when you have no reason to think there's a problem!

When I was on dating sites, I'd sometimes see people posting pics of themselves with their kids. I guess they wanted to show who they really are. God knows, if you are a parent, your kid is one of the biggest, if not the biggest, thing in your life. I didn't post a pic of me with my own kid, but I never thought doing so was an indication of being a child abuser, and no one here has presented a shred of convincing evidence that it is.

Sheesh!!
posted by latkes at 7:20 AM on November 30, 2012 [14 favorites]


So yeah, this is slutshaming. There's a cognitive dissonance that you're trying to resolve between "Parental Figures" and "People Who Want To Have (Slightly) Kinky Sex." That venn diagram has a whoooooole lotta overlap. I don't have kids and I don't swing, but I can come up with a number of plausible explanations for this:

- It is a good picture of them. Families sometimes have professional portraits taken. Couples maybe sometimes do this, but not nearly as frequently. And singletons? Unless you need a professional head-shot or are my good friend Bridget and you just want to go play dress-up... no. And hey, that's a good picture, I look really hot! So when do I need to look hot? Um, when I'm trying to hook up with someone! Yay!

- They want you to not be surprised if/when you arrive and start tripping over Beanie Babies or Legos or whatever. Maybe they've had a bad experience with someone getting judgy over parents wanting to invite in a third? Maybe they'd like to subtly screen out people who might have a problem with that. Maybe they want you to know that this wont be a slumber party, and why.

This might be indicative that they're freakshows. But it is just as indicative that they're Dick and Jane Smith from Normaltownvilleburg who want to get a little freaky.
posted by jph at 7:37 AM on November 30, 2012 [10 favorites]


If you were doing internet dating, would you think it weird to get a pic of person+kid? So why should this be any different?
posted by disconnect at 7:42 AM on November 30, 2012


People who call themselves "swingers" range from "looking to fuck without knowing your name" to "looking to have a couple to vacation with and be BFFs with forever".

If they're looking for an ongoing relationship, mentioning that they have a kid is understandable. If they're looking for nameless fucks it's a bit awkward.

I'm guessing it's more of an ongoing relationship situation, and that's why you're worried about drama or complications...? If it's just a casual sex thing, I'd just worry about finding a place to do it because chances are they won't be able to host.

In terms of child protective services, you can tell better than us if they were sexualizing their kid. I mean, were they like "here is our HOT KID"? Then yeah, maybe think about contacting someone, but from what you've mentioned here there's an even chance that they suck at cropping/taking digital photos. I mean, there are people who pay money for the one-hour photo places to put their digital pictures on CDs for them.

Of course you don't have to sleep with them if you're uncomfortable for ANY reason, even if it's not "reasonable" or "fair" or whatever. It's always okay to not be interested and we don't know these people any better than you do, you know?
posted by the young rope-rider at 7:53 AM on November 30, 2012 [2 favorites]


Oh and I'd also be worried that they're looking for more of a relationship than you're interested in.
posted by the young rope-rider at 7:54 AM on November 30, 2012 [1 favorite]


Oh for god's sake. I'm a polyamorous parent, and my online dating profile includes a picture of me and my child, for exactly the reason that several people above described: my kid is a huge part of my life, and anyone I date needs to know that and be cool with that. And also with tripping over legos, crazy scheduling, etc. I really hope no one reports me to child services.

Now, granted, I probably wouldn't send a pic of me and my kid to someone from Craigslist casual encounters or something like that, but I actually have no experience doing that kind of thing. If it's just a family photo, I think you can probably relax. But maybe also meet these people for coffee before fucking them, and see what the vibe is.
posted by woodvine at 8:19 AM on November 30, 2012 [4 favorites]


My experience has been that kids don't necessarily represent drama or higher stakes in a casual situation - if you wind up in a polyamorous sort of thing then yeah drama can happen, but that doesn't sound like what's going on here - but kids do tend to represent a scheduling inconvenience.

In terms of them even sending you the photo, I would say the most likely reason is that they wanted to convey a sense that they're basically normal people with a basically normal life; this is a thing that is done to put others at ease because there are a lot of creepers and lunatics out there. In kink communities it's sort of the done thing to cordon off that part of one's life pretty fastidiously (to the point of using "scene names," so there's less of a chance of shit getting back to your real life) but it's not a universal standard and, again, whenever I see people do this, it's almost always for one of three reasons:

1. As mentioned above, they want to portray themselves as a normal healthy couple, which is an understandable desire because if you're on the look for some MFF action it's easy to feel kind of like a skeeve, so this as much about proving they're not a skeeve to themselves as it is about proving it to you - one internalizes messages, it happens

2. The kid is a huge part of their life and if you're going to be anything but a one-night stand they never call again, you're going to need to know that and be aware that no one's going to be pretending otherwise; I once had a first date with someone who initially planned to bring their kid along (young enough that my presence wouldn't confuse them, mind you), and that is just how some people kick it

I think the latter reason is a good one because let's face it, reality intrudes into even the most Dear Penthouse-y scenarios and children are a version of reality that intrudes in a uniquely uncontrollable way. No one expects you to know exactly what to do with yourself when you're sitting on someone's face and being groped by a third party and then suddenly the baby monitor crackles and screams and the third party has to run out of the room and no one's sure if they should keep going or wait or what, or if the kid's staying at Grandma's but is suddenly running a fever and what the fuck do we do now, but it's a pretty worthwhile aim to at least do their due diligence in making sure you're aware of possibilities like that.

Having an adventurous sex life when you're a parent is tough because you're keenly aware that at any moment and with no warning, you could experience the equivalent of a (screaming) bucket of ice water being thrown on you while you're trying to do pretty much anything at all but especially sex, and a few years of that can make you a little crazy.

So:

Am I being silly?

Being sent a photo with a kid might give me a slight amount of pause for the reasons stated above - that it is not so much The Done Thing - but only that, and if they seemed cool I'd at least go meet them. So if it gave you pause, no, you aren't being silly. It would greatly assuage my fears that their profile said up front that they have a kid - their cards are already on the table in that way so I wouldn't think anything untoward was up if the photo they sent me included the child.

Is there anything in particular I'd need to do/talk about first that I might not need to with a childless couple?


My experience with this is that the only thing you need to bring to the table is some understanding and an open mind and a willingness to roll with whatever inconveniences or unexpected things come up. Beyond that, you can take your cues from them - they'll pretty much give you whatever primer is necessary.

And for the love of God, don't call child protection services. I mean, yeah, call CPS if they ask if you want to involve the kid in your sexy times, but that is a very different (and very unlikely) scenario from what's going on right now.
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 8:45 AM on November 30, 2012 [2 favorites]


I can understand why someone might want you to know they have a kid, kids being a large part of their life and potentially affecting when and where of what they can do, but I can't for the life of me understand why they think you need to see the kid.

Also, as someone who was a kid, can I just say that OMG how horrifying would it be to find out your parents were sending photos of you to people they were trying to bone?? I fully support my parents doing whatever they want with their sex lives, I do not want to be a part of it in anyway.

I would argue this could be evidence of poor boundaries (their kid's boundaries. They are people folks) at worst, poor judgement at best. Definitely a yellow flag, maybe a red one.
posted by Dynex at 11:06 AM on November 30, 2012 [3 favorites]


Report them to child services.

This is terrible advice. They have done nothing wrong. If you're weired out, walk away. Don't do anything that might ruin their lives over nothing.
posted by Dasein at 11:24 AM on November 30, 2012 [10 favorites]


Please read my entire comment and keep statements in context. Please. I don't conclude the OP should report these folks to children services right now, but rather that the OP should be open to doing so if need be.

In the context of the "We might have sex with you, here's our photo!" online pic exchange, including minors in the photo might be some kind of test or code, a way of sussing out people who into criminal sexual behavior.

Someone above mentioned being a polyamorous parent and having their child in their profile picture. Yes! Because in that situation, you are looking for ongoing relationships. The OP in this question is corresponding with the intent of seeking out partners for hook-ups. It's just not the same thing.

Headnsouth gave great advice about what type of reply to send.

During the process of seeking out sex-only partners online, it is very weird to offer up images of your minor child/ren as you attempt to seem appealing.

My level of concern is pretty high.
posted by jbenben at 4:05 PM on November 30, 2012 [2 favorites]


OP: I do not think you are being silly to feel like this is worth thinking about. I can't even remember the last time I was more surprised by a set of AskMe answers. Including a photo of your child in the internet messages to strangers you are seeking for casual sex?? To me that is glaringly, obviously fucked up. It is very very creepy to me. It makes me wonder about these people. I... don't even know what to think, I am so surprised by the other answers that I am a bit stunned.

First of all, the way they are behaving with regard to their child's privacy is a solid outlier compared to the almost all the parents I have ever known. Many parents I know don't want photos of their child online at all. Almost all the ones I know who do post photos online keep the privacy settings restricted to friends and family. Most of them have also taken real-life steps to prevent the child's name/identity from being known to strangers (from things as simple as instructing the children not to tell strangers their name, to refusing permission for their child's photo to appear in the local newspaper, to forgoing name-embroidered backpacks, etc.). Including a photo of your child in a message you are sending to strangers for sex?? Whatever else it is, it is an outlier.

Dynex really nailed another reason why it is creepy to me. They are playing unusually loosely with their child's boundaries. Who would want to be included in someone else's sex seeking messages?? If I had a friend who was sending out a bunch of messages to people for sex, and she was sending a photo of the two of us, so my photo was going out to all those people, I would be seriously pissed. Honestly that could be friendship-ending and I would be shocked at her poor judgment.

That's how I would feel about a friend doing it. Now - my parents doing it??? My parents doing it when I was a child??

Bottom line. These people are playing fast and loose with the privacy and boundaries of someone who they are supposed to love and protect more than anyone else in the whole world, someone who is pretty helpless and dependent on them.

I think that makes them pretty bad candidates to trust enough for casual sex.

My two cents. I do not think the mention of CPS is out-there.
posted by cairdeas at 9:17 PM on November 30, 2012 [4 favorites]


> Please read my entire comment and keep statements in context. Please. I don't conclude the OP should report these folks to children services right now, but rather that the OP should be open to doing so if need be.

That would be the opposite of reading your entire comment keeping statements in context. You reply quite stridently at first with an imperative to call child services. And then you go on to speculate on ways that it could be a mistake. Or, alternately, a sting operation for pedophiles. And THEN you say that the OP needn't call CPS now, but to be open to it. The context of your entire comment is "get ready to call CPS, because you'll probably need to."

anonymous, I think that sending a family photo is an odd choice, but I know people for whom this would be an uncomplicated and natural thing to do. I think an initial coffee date with the couple should give you everything you need to know to use your judgment as to whether they're matter-of-fact people who just sent you a good photo, or making a statement that swingers can be normal family people (either to make you feel safe or just kinda for in-the-scene PR), or people who are intentionally provocative but go all DRAMA on people who take their bait, or over-sharing creepy people with boundary issues.

So on that coffee date, feel free to just honestly and earnestly ask them about the photo. I'd say something like "In that one photo, was that your daughter? I was a little surprised to get a family photo, I wasn't quite sure what to think." See how they respond.
posted by desuetude at 11:35 PM on November 30, 2012 [3 favorites]


Who would want to be included in someone else's sex seeking messages?? If I had a friend who was sending out a bunch of messages to people for sex, and she was sending a photo of the two of us, so my photo was going out to all those people, I would be seriously pissed. Honestly that could be friendship-ending and I would be shocked at her poor judgment.

Based on the usual sort of profile pictures I saw on OK Cupid when I used it, there are a lot of friendships that need some ending.

Everyone's all focused on the "omg sex!" I feel like whoever mentioned slutshaming is kind of right here. If I could put up an OK Cupid picture of me and some friends out at a bar having fun in the interest of securing some sort of interaction with someone in which sex may be involved, I really don't see why doing so in pursuit of a more temporary relationship in which sex may be involved is somehow creepy. People have sex. Your relationships with other people -- friends, family, etc -- are part of who you are and how you will interact with others. Informing someone of those relationships in the context of establishing trust with someone. And if that couple has a youngish kid, how many recent pictures of them together do you think they have without the kid in the photograph with them? My guess is not many.

How would people feel if this was a dude picking the OP up in a bar and he had a picture of his kid in his wallet that he showed her in the course of conversation? Bar pickups are pretty much always with the intent of sex. Does this also warrant a CPS call?
posted by olinerd at 1:52 AM on December 1, 2012 [2 favorites]


I've always been a little weirded out by people who post pictures of themselves with their friends on OKC, let alone a child. Did they ask the friends for permission? What's it trying to prove? Wow. This guy on OKC has friends, that's so sexy... I don't write to these sorts of people or respond to them in any way. To me, it sends a big red flag about not caring about the privacy of others. (I make an exception for babies since they all look the same.)

It's not weird that these people have a kid, but it is weird to give a picture of their kid to a random stranger on the internet. They have no way to tell you're not a pervert. This couple is taking some fairly big risks with their kid. Plus, as others have said, I would be horrified if my parents sent a picture of me to someone they were seeking out for casual sex.
posted by parakeetdog at 11:44 AM on December 1, 2012 [1 favorite]


Based on the usual sort of profile pictures I saw on OK Cupid when I used it, there are a lot of friendships that need some ending.

But we weren't talking about profile pictures on OK Cupid (though the considerate thing to do would be to ask permission there too). We were talking about sending out messages to people for casual sex. Context matters. I would be fine with someone sending my name and phone number to a work contact but not fine with them writing it on the wall of the men's bathroom. It has nothing to do with slut shaming because nobody is shaming the parents for wanting or seeking sex or wanting or seeking sex while being parents. It is about how they treat the privacy and boundaries of others, specifically their own child, while doing that. I am only saying this in case it is useful to the OP in answering the question of whether or not is is useful to think twice about this.
posted by cairdeas at 12:54 PM on December 1, 2012 [1 favorite]


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