And I’m Back

Sorry All!

Things in life started to get the most of me, and I had to shut a couple of things down in order to deal.  I cannot say they are completely dealt with, but I’m working on it and in a much better head space than I was a few months ago.  So, here I am again.

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The Depressed Sub

I have a sneaking suspicion this isn’t going to be very popular, but oh well. Here goes anyway.

I am a sub, not a fucking robot. I see all the time doms complaining that they are not fetish dispensers, and I agree with that. I’m not one either! Even for my partner, I am not always submissive. It’s not me being bratty, or obstinate, or any other derogatory term you wish to fashion. In reality, it is that there are times when I simply cannot be submissive.

I am fully aware this is a choice that I am making. But, believe me, I make it with both my partner and myself in mind. The times I cannot be submissive are almost entirely driven by my depression. I have to make the choice to not submit, or find alternative means of pleasing my partner, in order to ensure my own mental well-being as well as the well-being of the relationship. It’s not an easy thing to do when the only thing my brain wants to do is dig itself deeper into whatever dark cavern triggered the bout of depression.

Everyone gets depressed. It is a quite normal emotional state. The difference is that the vast majority of people can change what they are doing, temporarily change their environment, or simply “pick themselves up by their bootstraps” and break the mental cycle. Those of us with depression, are unable to do any of the above. We end up digging ourselves such a deep mental hole, bouncing from one depressant thought to the next, that eventually we don’t know which way is up much less how to break the vicious cycle of our own thoughts. Often, the entire mental cycle is accompanied with thoughts of severe self loathing, general unworthiness, and self doubt.

Now, imagine just for a moment, someone in this emotional state submitting to a beating, being humiliated and degraded, or submitting to any number of socially unacceptable sex acts. Trust me, it is not a pretty picture. The simple act of submitting, and the resulting thought patterns, in many ways mimics the symptoms of depression. For anyone already in the grip of depression, it can often intensify them to a completely intolerable point. The damage to be caused to a person in this state is very real and long lasting. The damage to the relationship is also very real and most likely permanent.

So, if your sub is suddenly not so subby, or acting completely out of character, you may do well to think back over the past couple of days. Did something happen with work, family, a night out? Or, {insert shocked gasp here}, how about try talking to your sub beyond demands, requests and to-do lists. Your relationship will thank you for it!

Headspace: The ins and outs for me

I have heard more versions of what headspace is, whether or not it is a good thing, whether it is dangerous or not, etc, than probably the weeks than I have been alive on the planet.  Everyone has their own version.  There is a good reason for this phenomenon:  headspace is intensely personal, and everyone deals with it in their own way.  What I am writing now is NOT to be taken as “This is how headspace should be and what you should do” but rather just me relating my thoughts on it.

With my Lady, I reach many different levels of subspace.  Anywhere from not at all, to gone to the world for an hour or more.  Regardless of the deepness level, I do tend to have a ritual of “self-aftercare” involving a beer and a cigarette.  This in no way means that my Lady does not provide aftercare, or that I do not want it.  She comforts, soothes, does all the things I require during this time, regardless of the level of subspace she has taken me to.

There are times that I get so damn deep into subspace that I would literally be incapable of giving directions to the gas station across the street.  I am completely coherent, I know what is going on, but it all seems far away and frankly the connection between thought and words seems to get disconnected.  I could no more tell my Lady what I need than I could walk outside and jump to the moon.  This is definitely where she shines.  She is attentive, patient, guiding me not out of subspace, but back into the safety of her arms. She gets me to a physically safe place, and then holds and cuddles me until I swim my way back out of subspace into reality.

Yes, coming out of subspace feels like swimming up from a deep lake or pond, for me at least.  All my thoughts are there, but the mental perception of drowning in emotion should I open my mouth is all too real.  All the emotions are good ones, but they are entirely overwhelming when they hit all at once with no filter on them.  Raw love, admiration, respect, gratitude…  I may not have words for all of them, actually.  It is not a case that I do not want these emotions expressed, but I have to have the time to process them myself, which happens in subspace as I am swimming back to reality.

As far as whether or not it is healthy, I’m not a mental health professional.  However, I do know that for me it largely depends on my partner.  If, as with my Lady, I have a caring and understanding partner, I do believe it is an entirely healthy experience.  I get the time to recoup my senses, work through all the thoughts and emotions, and most often our night continues.  I have been with partners who were not at all caring or understanding.  They viewed subspace as taking me away from them and having their accolades sung by me for the job they did, which I suppose in a certain sense it does. With them, I actively did everything I could to avoid losing myself to the experience, and thus to subspace, because the outcome was invariably unhealthily filled with guilt, shame and pressure.  The only answer I can truly give is the overall feeling I have the next day, good or bad, of the experience in total is what determines its health for me.

So, in closing, should everyone strive to find their own headspace?  I believe so, but I strongly caution for you to allow your own relationship, and your own mind, dictate what it looks and feels like.  To me, my subspace is in invaluable tool in determining if I liked, loved, or hated the activities that happened to send me there.  During the actual scene, and immediately afterward, I am too involved in my own physical feelings to recognize any mental sides to it.  It is the process of subspace that gives me clarity to the overall situation.  Not immediately after I come back to earth, certainly, but after reflection with a clear head the next day.

I know I have written this almost exclusively from a subspace perspective.  That is the headspace I have the most experience with personally.  However, I do recognize there are others, such as domspace and little space, which require elements of care from the partner not in them.  But as my experience with them is extremely limited or non-existent, I will leave it for someone else to expound on them.  All states of altered perception require a caring, understanding hand from the other partner to be healthy in my opinion.

Does experience matter?

I responded to a post yesterday about a more experienced submissive than the dominant they were in a relationship with. I have been in that position a couple of different times, so it wasn’t hard to offer advice. However, without derailing their post entirely, I could not in good conscious say all that I had to say on the subject.

Now, we all get into relationships with partners of varying levels of experience compared to our own. It is the nature of everyone being an individual. A person can have years of experience as a rope top or bottom and none in corporeal punishment. There are folks with experience in degradation and humiliation that have no idea how to handle a service oriented submissive though they have always been the dominant in their previous relationships. The comparisons are as numerous as the experiences you can think of.

The question of mentors came up in the replies, and I agreed that they can be useful in having questions answered about specific activities. If you want to learn how to successfully and safely suspend a human in rope bondage, having a mentor that has experience in doing so is definitely going to come in handy. If you stop and think about it, it only makes sense.

What I did not want to say in my comment was there is a whole area of experience that while harder to quantify and define may well be even more important over all. It is not experience in specific activities that I allude to, but rather the experience of living in the mind and body of an individual. This is true for both dominants and submissives. It is impossible for a person to know everything that is in the mind of another. We can come close with communication, but I highly doubt an individual ever divulges all their own deepest, darkest secrets. These individual, and largely internal, experiences do not nullify the fact that they are experiences at all, even if they have only happened in the imagination. The human imagination, combined with a cursory sense of research, is a very powerful thing. After all, it is our imaginations that form our fantasies in the first place, without experience or research. It is this mental adventuring that in fact leads most of us to our respective roles within any lifestyle relationship.

So, back to the question of does experience matter? Yes and no would have to be the only logical answer. If you are only concerned with specific activities, it definitely does, and should. But in terms of a relationship, the emphasis on experience is lessened by the fact that we are all individuals. There is no “One Twue Way” that is going to work for everyone. Each relationship is a unique entity, and should be approached and treated as such. It is not so much about each person’s experience, but the experiences that can be created, shared and enjoyed between two unique individuals.

Something to make ya go “HMMM”

My use of the word lifestyle encompasses anyone and everyone who enjoys sexual activities not currently in the sexual vocabulary of the general public.  There is a surprising large community of these like minded individuals from all corners of the world and from all social and economic backgrounds.  We are not monsters hiding in the closet or under your bed.  In fact, I would be willing to wager that you work with, went to college with, or attend church with people in the lifestyle.

But a curious thing is happening which I do not understand or condone.  It seems that some people have gotten it into their heads that there is some form of hierarchy to be derived from the level of one’s participation in kinky activities.  I have seen it alluded to many times that people in 24/7 dynamics are more true to the lifestyle of BDSM than the kinky bedroom-only players, or that strictly play partners, while both may be respected members of their local community as individuals, they as a play couple are somehow less,  and people just experimenting have no place in the lifestyle. This is an absurd notion to me.

The lifestyle is supposedly governed by the idea of you kink your way, I’ll kink mine.  It is a self-defense mechanism to limit the influence of the “One True Way” mindset.  No one is the same, and none of us have the same likes and dislikes as the kink community as a whole.  That is the very point of having a community. Being able to have a resource of information, opinion and insight that is non-judgmental is the very reason many of us ever ventured into the community in the first place.  Hell, if I was interested in being judged, or set upon some pedestal, I would simply have to talk to my family!  I would like to think that the larger lifestyle community is much more open, honest and understanding.  And dammit, we should be! Thankfully, the vast majority of people are.

We all came to the community in search of something we were unable to find, or unwilling to try and find, from the general public:  acceptance.  We tend to stay in the shadows of the public because in many parts of the world careers, the right to see our children, social connections and a host of other things are at risk merely for the fact that we are not perceived as “normal” and there are many misconceptions about the lifestyle floating around among the “normal” folk.  So, we come to the community searching for a safe haven.

Why would we then, in our entirely self-governed community, allow it to be fractured into this idea of an unneeded, unwarranted, baseless notion that there is in fact a hierarchy among the members?  I, for one, am no better for being in a 24/7 dynamic based relationship than the man who enjoys a little light bondage or the occasional swat of a buttock while having sex doggie style.  I say we make welcome all people, regardless of their current or planned level of  participation, or what their kinks are.  Remember that notion of you kink your way, I’ll kink mine?  Yeah, we need to get back to that, and remember it is not the community’s job to necessarily agree as a whole, but to support as a whole.  If you count yourself as a member of the community, this means the acceptance has to come from you, regardless of what you may actually think personally about how it fits into your life.

30 Days of Kink: Day 3

Day 3: How did you discover you were kinky?

I have to say that I actually discovered kink as an adult holistically through porn and erotica.  The internet came to the world outside of academia when I was in my early twenties, and being a horny little bugger, I was all over that in a heartbeat!  But a curious thing happened, I was turned on by the vanilla mainstream porn, but found that I was really turned on by the BDSM and lifestyle porn.  This led me down a road of research and self exploration that I continue to travel to this day, and hopefully will continue to do so until the day I cease to exist.

30 Days of Kink: Day 2

Day 2: If you could only indulge one kink, what would it be and why?

I would have to say ass play.  It is my foremost kink and fetish and always has been.  I love everything about it.  It gets the point that if I go long enough without it, I get a definable “empty” feeling and itch.  This is not just a physical feeling, but psychologically as well.  I can have all the vanilla sex I want, and eventually the thought of ass play is going to creep in and basically take over my brain until it happens.

30 Days of Kink: Day 1

Day 1: How do you label yourself, and why? What interests you about BDSM/kink? What does BDSM mean to you, personally?

How do I label myself, and why?

I consider myself an Alpha Sub.  I am submissive only to my sexual partner, not to the world in general.  In my daily life, I am the leader.  I am the one that the managers come to run things by me BEFORE approaching the owners to get a feeling of the response they are likely to get.

What interests you about BDSM/kink?

Everything.  I love the fact that BDSM and kink allow for exploration of the body that are not normally considered to be sexual.  Ever had someone run a fingernail lightly down the back of your knee?

What does BDSM mean to me personally?

Personally, BDSM is a pretty accurate definition of what I want my sex life to be.  I love bondage, I am attracted to sexually dominant women, I am sensually sadistic when asked to top, I am sexually submissive, and as far as masochism…  ummm, yeah, more please!

What is sex? What is kink?

First, sorry about my absence the past couple of days.  I had to take a short break after finishing the series to get my head back out of the past and into the present.

That being said, I have this question bouncing around in my head.  I have had it for a while now, actually.  You see, I define basically anything I do sexually just as “sex”. Basically, if it is an activity that I cannot, or prefer not to, do fully clothed it is sex.  This ranges from cuddles to oral sex to ass beatings to bondage.  Obviously, my definition of sex is rather expanded from the normal found in society.

With this expanded definition it is a fair question to ask what, if anything, I define as kink.  Kink for me are things that are not overtly sexual in nature, but given my brain and my relationship dynamic turn into almost a form of light foreplay.  Giving Malady a foot rub is a kink to me.  I can do it clothed or not, and since I don’t have a foot fetish per se, they rarely lead directly to sex or turn me on.  Surprisingly, I have far fewer actual kinks than most people give me credit for.

So do I adjust either definition in an attempt to even things out a bit?  No, I think I’m good and I really am alright with not being overly kinky.  Because let’s face it, my sex life is fantastic!

What puts the kink in kinky?

Before we can actually get into this, we have to decide what is and what is not kink. According to Urban Dictionary the definition of kink is:

Noun – kink
Plural – kinks
As in “a kink”.  Sexual tastes for a person. Usually a kink is an unusual taste in sexual behaviour.

Alright, I can live with that, somewhat.  Now, I do not use Urban Dictionary if I need an actual definition of a word, but it does come in useful when you are trying to figure out how a particular word is being defined by people outside of academia.  So let’s have some fun with this.

If we take this definition one step further, and take the use of “unusual” to mean “not everyone is doing it”, there are some rather obvious sexual kinks.  Fisting, orgies and sex in public being just a sample that quickly come to mind.  But what about some of the other activities?

I know plenty of people who adamantly oppose oral sex.  It doesn’t seem to matter if they are in the lifestyle or not.  Does that mean oral sex, giving or receiving, is a kink?  Or is the opposition to it the actual kink at this point?

What about sex in the traditional missionary position?  This is certainly unusual for me, so can I consider anyone who does partake in it to be kinky?  Or do I have to wait until they are having missionary sex while wearing cartoon animal hats?

Which brings up another question.  Who exactly gets to decide what is kink and what is not?  Is there a Kink Commission somewhere in a dark corner, or is it more of a “general consensus” thing from the public?

Obviously, I do not have answers to any of these questions.  But in a society that looks askew at people who are thought to be kinky, there is one more thing to ponder.  Since the advent of the internet,  and the proliferation of pornography depicting kinky activities thus causing a rise in the amount of people experimenting over the past twenty years or so, missionary sex may very well be the biggest kink of them all at this point.