Day 25: Are you open about your kinks, or are you “in the closet”?

I have very few vanilla friends, so in my social life, I am largely “out”. I do not, however, believe in sharing my kinks or my sex life with those whom I would not ordinarily have such a conversation. I am not ashamed of my lifestyle; however, I believe there is a line between being proud of who you are and imposing your kinks on those who have not consented.

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Day 22: What do you think is important in keeping a BDSM/kink relationship healthy? What differences and similarities do you see in a kink relationship and a vanilla relationship.

There are a number of things that are vital to the maintenance of a healthy relationship. These things are also important to a vanilla relationship; however, it is my experience that a vanilla relationship failing does not have the same intense emotional impact that the end of a kink relationship does. Yes, there is pain and grief at the end of a vanilla relationship. A kink relationship, however, is one of intense extremes. There are times when you may be quite literally trusting your partner with your very life. I believe there are three things that are absolutely required for a healthy kink relationship: self-awareness, trust, and communication.

Self-awareness: Some come to a new kink relationship with years of experience under their belt. Others come with nothing kinkier than doggy style sex. It doesn’t matter how much experience you have. What matters, is knowing yourself. As you explore your sexuality, be open to your own thoughts and emotions. If you don’t like a specific kink activity, that’s okay. If something triggers a negative emotional reaction, that’s ok. What is important is being aware of the reactions and being accepting of yourself. Don’t try to force yourself into a box you don’t fit in. No matter how hard you try, the square peg won’t fit into the round hole unless you shave some of it off. Don’t shave some of yourself off just to fit into a label.

Trust: Trust yourself. Trust your partner, but first trust yourself. Self-doubt is absolutely toxic to any relationship, but perhaps more so in kink relationships. Regardless of which “side of the slash” you identify with, you must trust yourself. It is only then that you can be psychologically okay with some of the more extreme aspects of kink.

Communication: This one is the one every one talks about. In a vanilla relationship, communication typically is about things like feelings, finances, home decorating, careers, etc. A kink relationship has all of those same things, but more. Communicate your desires with your partner. Let them know if you want to try something new. Let them know if you didn’t like something done in a scene. Let them see your vulnerability. Let them see you.

Day 18: Do you have any kinky/BDSM pet peeves? If so, what are they?

I have a number of things that irritate me about the community; however, I’m not sure those qualify as kinky/BDSM pet peeves. For what it’s worth I’ll address those irritations.

  1. Using RACK as an excuse to look the other way regarding safety.
    I have recently been to a group that states that they are a RACK group, and that they trust that all involved will be aware of the risks in their activity. While that sounds good on the surface, I observed a number of safety concerns that could be easily remedied. Unsafe equipment was probably the easiest to remedy. The other major concern I had was the repeated welcoming of an individual who had demonstrated predatory behavior, and had a number of complaints against him.
  2. Using “brattiness” as an excuse for poor behavior
    I’ve written a whole rant about this previously, so I won’t bore you all again. Suffice it to say, that being a brat is a kink. It is not welcome when brattiness is imposed on those who do not appreciate it, and using the excuse that: “I’m a brat, I just can’t help myself” – Well, that’s garbage. We are all adults, even brats.
  3. Demanding that those who use a similar label all act similarly.
    I am dominant. I am also little. I recently went to a discussion where the presenter said that being little is a bottom position. Although he was corrected by another group leader, the fact is the stereotype of littles as bottoms is there for a reason. It is the norm. However, we should not impose our definition of a label on anyone but ourselves.

Day 16: What are the most difficult aspects of having a sexuality that involves kink or BDSM for you personally?

I am out about my kinky predilections, however, I do not impose my kink on others. What this means for me, is that I do not discuss my kink with those that I would not ordinarily discuss sex with. The only difficulty I have found that kink creates for me, at times, is a limitation of the dating pool, and perhaps the odd occasion where I have had to tell someone where I’d been the night before.

Over time, I have come up with ways to engage in social conversation, without actually lying. A conversation with a co-worker about weekend activities may involve discussion of whether I went out or not. When asked, I will say that I went to a party. I don’t typically provide more details than that. When a joke is made about BDSM, especially since 50 Shades Darker recently was released on DVD, I just avoid those conversations.

What is it about that series that guarantees the BDSM conversation will come up with vanillas at least once a year? Le Sigh

Day 15: What is a BDSM/kink activity you’re curious about and would like to try? Do you know anyone that can help you explore this?

I am fortunate to have had the opportunity to explore most of the activities I’d like to, and to have done so early on. I look at my early exposure as an opportunity to find my niche, and to master the skills I choose.

I would like to experiment with hot wax, and other temperature play. There are a few people local to me that I know of that could show me the safety precautions necessary, and of course, my wonderful knight, Phoenix, would be more than willing to explore with me.

Day 14: In your experience how does real life BDSM/kink varies from fantasy BDSM/kink?

Fantasy BDSM is often fueled by erotica, whether that be writing or imagery, and porn. What gets portrayed is often the grand finale. The beauty of a woman suspended from the ceiling, unable to free herself. The bright red welts left behind from a solid cane. The painful contortions made possible in CBT.

What all of that imagery misses is the build up. The rope that took an hour to tie. The slow warm-up to make the recipient able to withstand and enjoy the welts. The gentle manipulations to get the testicles in a position to be hurt but not injured.

What it also misses are the bad days. The days when your limits are no where near where they usually are. The days when the slightest touch make you flinch. The emotionally unstable days, when you can’t tell up from down.

Reality, for me, is about connecting to my partner. Yes, that can, and often does lead to some intense and amazingly erotic moments. But it also includes the mundane days. The days when he doesn’t feel like doing his chores. The days when I don’t feel like making decisions. Reality also includes the downright bad days. The days when chronic fatigue just won’t shake its hold and I barely feel capable of standing up, much less being dominant. The days when depression hits him, and he needs me to hold him not beat him. This is reality. He is first my love, then my sub. I would not have his submission without his love.

Headspace – My Perspective

Phoenix recently posted about headspace, which you can read here. This prompted an interesting discussion between the two of us, where he asked about my headspace and I struggled to explain it. I regularly inhabit multiple headspaces, and they are all distinctly different. As Phoenix stated, these posts are our attempts to explain what our own headspace looks like. They are by no means an effort to tell anyone else what their space should be.

Dom Space – In my dom space, there is no one but me and my submissive. The reactions I elicit from him fuel my arousal. At the same time, my senses are heightened. Every muscle twitch, sigh, and hitch of the breath becomes a signal. Do I continue pushing? Do I take a break? Do I soothe the burning pain, or do I stoke the fires more? These are decisions that I make in the moment, based on the reactions I perceive.

In addition to the heightened awareness making me a more attentive dominant, it also serves as an opportunity to become more attuned to my partner. I am pleased that my partner and I communicate as much as we do, but there are things that words cannot convey. These little signals become beacons of insight given enough attention and time. The more I learn my partners small cues, the better I understand him, his desires, his needs, and his emotions. It is this understanding that allows me to be the partner that he needs.

Primal Bottom Space: As a primal, I am almost always a bottom. I love being pinned down, having my neck bitten (within reason), scratches, and being flipped over and fucked until I scream. In my primal space, there are no extra thoughts. It is raw hedonism. While I am a bottom in this space, I do not stop being dominant. When I want more, I demand it. When I want my partner to do something different, I get it. It is in this place that “passion” becomes apparent. The raw energy of this place, when fully tapped, leaves me drained, exhausted, and sated.

Little Space: This space, in varying degrees, is my default. This is the place where I find happiness. This is the place that normalizes the sadism of dom space and the hedonism of primal space. After an intense evening (I hesitate to call it a scene, as my dynamic does not function on a scene by scene basis) my little space is what bring me back to reality. After Phoenix has gotten aftercare, and I have gotten aftercare, my little space is where I go to bring the laughter back. This is a place of innocence and trust. A place where my partner is my safe place and my light. In this place, love is shown in the form of nose boops and raspberries. My partner responds to this with a tender affection.

Note: There are many more aspects to my little space, that would require a post all of its own. I’ve included it here briefly just to provide a more complete picture of the layers that make up my headspace.

Combine the three head spaces and you start to get somewhat of an idea of why I do the things I do. Again, this is just what headspace is like for me. These descriptions may resonate with you, or they may not. Hopefully, these posts can serve as an inspiration for self-exploration and reflection, and maybe some talking points with your partner if you have one.