Thursday, July 31, 2008

Know thyself, know thy place

I've been a bad kitten - a bad sub - and now I'm being punished for it. Master and I got into a few arguments (about really stupid things, and I don't know why I got so impassioned about them), and he said that it wasn't that I argued that bothered him - "If I wanted to be with someone who never stated their opinion, there are plenty of vapid twats out there," he said - but that I argued so belligerently and got so defensive.

It made him question whether I really wanted to be his pet.

If I could, I'd shout, "Yes, yes, a thousand times - yes!" so loudly that he'd be able to hear me two states over. My relationship with Master has been deeper, richer, and more fulfilling than any other I've had in my life, and I have no doubt that this is greatly due to the amount of trust, openness, discipline, and intimacy that D/s has brought into our relationship.

But sometimes it's hard. I am not a submissive person; I am submissive to Master and Master alone because there is something about him that brings out that aspect of me - that holds me, entranced, at his feet. When we're hundreds of miles apart, though, and all I can communicate with is words on a screen or a disembodied voice on a phone... it's more difficult for me to stay in the mindset of his pet.

I guess you could say that I was starting to go feral.

This doesn't excuse me, of course. After mulling it over yesterday, I decided that I needed to punish myself - to make up for the lack of discipline. So I slept on the floor, or tried to. After a few hours my hips hurt too badly for me to sleep, so I moved back up to the bed. I wish I could say it's the thought that counts, but that feels like a cop-out.

When I finally spoke to Master tonight, he said, "The only time you really think about your transgression is when I withdraw from you." He's right - I was frantically trying to contact him today, even bursting into tears because I knew we needed to talk and the longer we went without the worse it seemed to get. I think it has something to do with how our relationship came to be. Last summer, we weren't officially "together." We loved each other - we were incredibly in love, just like we are now - but we weren't supposed to be, for myriad reasons. So Master tried to suppress our budding relationship; I, my reason addled by emotions, clawed desperately to keep it up. I managed to restrain my phone calls to one per week, but if I wasn't able to talk to Master for over seven days I would grow increasingly frantic, fearing that perhaps he'd finally grown tired of me.

I think that is why I was nearly panicking when I couldn't get ahold of Master for an entire day. It was just like the bad old days, when he tried to avoid me because he wanted to deny how we felt for each other. It's one thing when we can't speak for an extended period of time due to extenuating circumstances: one of us is on vacation, work keeps us busy, whatever. It's another entirely when there's no reason for Master not to pick up and I have the terrible suspicion that he can hear the phone and just chooses not to answer - chooses to ignore me. I guess you could say it's a form of seperation anxiety or something.

But Master doesn't want to simply cut me off, however temporarily, whenever I need to be punished. It's as hard on him as it is on me. I told him how I slept on the floor last night, and he said I'm going to do it again tonight - only this time I'm not to move to the bed, no matter what. I'll just lie on my stomach; that should be most comfortable.

"And tomorrow," he said after telling me to sleep on the floor, "for breakfast, you're going to get your dish and fill it with water. And that's all you'll have until five o'clock."

My eyes teared up when I heard that. "No lunch?"


"Can I have my tea in the morning?" I always bring a mug of tea to work with me; the caffeine keeps me from falling asleep at my desk.



Then Master asked me if I would rather go without food until 5 pm tomorrow or go without speaking to him until 5 pm. I paused, since I wasn't sure whether this was a trick question or not. "Well, I'd rather go without speaking to you until five, but that's because I normally don't get home until around five anyway - so that's not really a punishment."

"That's good. I wanted to make sure your lunch was more important than speaking to me."

"Yeah, my lunch is more important to me."

"Okay. I'm going to hang up the phone now. I'll talk to you at five."

Though I'm glad I get to eat food tomorrow, part of me feels like I should fast anyway. Whenever Master does this - threatens to implement a particularly draconian punishment in order to scare me, then ultimately settles for something milder - I feel... almost cheated. Well no, not cheated, but like I'm cheating. What have I done to deserve him going easy on me? Far be it from me to feel ungrateful; to the contrary, I feel undeserving of such generosity.

Well, I'm still sleeping on the floor. I suppose that's punishment enough.

I just wish we were back at school together. I feel like all of this would have been avoided if I were just able to sit beside his chair with my head in his lap.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Almost Out, or, All In The Family

I went for a walk with my mother and the dog when two young guys on a tandem bike rode by. "Evening, ladies," one of them said jauntily. "I like your collar."

"He likes your collar," my mom said with a laugh. "Your collar!"

Her teasing was nothing new to me; I'd worn them on occasion even before I got into kink, and so by now I'd just learned to roll with it. "You done yet?" I asked.

"Why do you wear a collar? Is it an S&M thing?"

"Because I want to," I said without missing a beat.

I want to say that I'm just that smooth, that I can think on my feet when faced with an awkward situation. The truth is, I'd been mentally rehearsing for exactly this kind of scenario for some time. I've decided that my stock response to the question of why I wear my collar is, "Because I want to." It isn't lying - I certainly want to wear it, and love wearing it - but it's vague enough that I don't need to divulge more about my sex life than I'm comfortable with. Really, Mom's the only one who's asked me (though a handful of others have made cracks about it).

I feel somewhat hypocritical because I'm out to my parents about being queer. I had a girlfriend in high school; my parents were all aflutter over both of us when we went to prom, so I know they don't have problem with that. I think that part of it has to do simply with not being comfortable sharing details of my sex life with my parents. They undoubtedly know that I have sex with Master, and I've discussed birth control with them, but it was only in abstractions. I'm not one of those women who gossips with her mother about how great her lover is in bed.

An argument against that is that BDSM is more than just sex for me. Master and I live it 24/7; the collar is just one part of it. To say that coming out as queer to my parents was sharing my sex life is only telling half the picture; my pansexuality colors my entire worldview. Can the same be said of kink?

On a slightly related note, I suspect my brother is also into kink. I also suspect he suspects I'm into kink. And I suspect he suspects I suspect he's into kink. It's all very strange.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Growing pains

The other day Master and I had a conversation about feminism. He feels that the feminist movement has evolved so much since its inception (and it has; just compare second wave and third wave philosophies!) that the word "feminism" can no longer even be accurately applied to it. I disagree, considering that a sizable chunk of words in the English language have meaning that are far evolved from their origin, and also because "feminism" has almost become a slur - I want to change that.

Master certainly respects my decision to label myself a feminist, since he agrees with its ideals, but he wanted to make sure I'm solid in my reasoning for adopting the label and not just the philosophy. The way he made sure was by testing my reasoning - by poking and prodding and shaking the foundations of my philosophy to make sure they were solid. He pointed out the faults in my arguments, asked questions that I didn't know how to articulate answers to, and when I tried to retreat defensively he dragged me back out.

I understand that he was doing this to help me - after all, if I can't defend my choices against someone I love, then how could I against someone who's outright hostile? But it left me feeling emotionally drained afterward. I really could have used some aftercare, but, alas, he was several hundred miles away - another reason why long-distance relationships suck hardcore.

So. Why do I choose to identify as a feminist?

For the same reason I choose to identify as kinky, polyamorous, liberal, queer, and all the other labels I've decided to pin to myself. These labels resonate with me deeply because behind those labels are a set of philosophies and entire communities that make me feel more at ease. They give me something to ground myself with, something to identify with. Being and individual is cool and all, but it's scary being all by your lonesome. That's why almost everyone has at least one group they choose to associate with. And even though there are people whose interpretations of kink/polyamory/liberalism/queer activism/feminism I'll disagree with (an inevitability, really), there are still hundreds of awesome human beings that I've met or heard of who helped me understand who I am as a person and where I fit in this world. I want to associate with them, I want to help others find their place in the same way that these people helped me.

And, yeah, I do kinda want to save the world.

That's why I call myself a feminist.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Let's put a smile on that face!

To all the radical feminists who bemoan how scary it is to be a "real" feminist, who repeat over and over (and over and over) how hard and alienating and depressing it is, who are convinced if you aren't a pariah you're not trying hard enough, who complain about the "fun feminists" who dare to crack a smile and enjoy themselves once in a while...

Why so serious?

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


I just got back from my second trip to see Master! And my goodness, we had sex a lot. Much more so than my previous visit, if I remember things correctly. Not that I'm complaining - far from it; I was the one who initiated a good portion of sexings.

On several occasions I was struck by how damn horny I was. Usually, I'm good with one go-round, but this time I wasn't satisfied until we had sex two, maybe even three times in a row. Which is really bizarre, because even though I'm multi-orgasmic, usually by the end of sex I'm a quivering, incoherent mess. But during the trip I'd have a half-dozen brain-shattering orgasms in one session and I'd just want more! It was great fun, but it made me wonder.

At first I thought it had to do with the fact that I hadn't seen Master in a while. But the time between my first trip and this last one was much shorter than the end of the school year and my first trip, even though I was hornier this time 'round. So that wasn't it. It's possible that it was hormones, since I think my period started while I was there. (But I'm not sure, since my Mirena makes my periods - when I do have them - super light, and it's possible the teensy bit of blood was the side effect of lots of rough sex in a short period of time, lol.)

I think one of the biggest differences was the time of day we had sex this time around. My first trip, we usually had it at night - often past midnight, when I'm already tired from a long day of wandering around the city. This time, however, we almost always had sex after we woke up between ten AM and noon. Not only was I refreshed and rarin' to go by that point, but I've also noticed that I tend to be hornier around noon. Which kinda sucks when I'm at work all day, but is awesome when I have nothing to do but lounge about with Master. >:3

I'm not sure what it is that makes me hornier during the day. Is it the "taboo" aspect - sex is supposed to be a nighttime activity, after all - something to do with my sleep cycle, or some independent factor? My guess is the third, since we have more-or-less independent cycles for our other urges, like sleep and hunger and such. Why can't sex have its own cycle?

Other changes between my first trip and my second? Well, I went on a free-range diet, which means I'm essentially vegetarian now, and I started doing yoga almost daily. (Gawd, I'm such a hippy.) Maybe they had something to do with it, but I don't think so.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

If you're into it

I'm fairly certain most people agree that what causes the plethora of sexual attractions, fetishes, what have you is a mystery. For example, when Master and I are doing it doggy-style, it drives me crazy whenever he grabs my ankle. I don't know why this is such a major turn-on for me, but nevertheless it is. M, on the other hand, can be reduced to an incoherent puddle by applying pressure to her collar bone - not even biting it, just pressing on it with your finger. I'll bet that everyone has their own little sexual quirks like these, and that no one can really explain why. Most people are pretty understanding of this, too; when confronted with a desire that they can't understand, many people will just shrug and say, "Hey, if that's what you're into."

The biologist in me wants to say it has something to do with genetics, since I've never had any environmental exposure to ankle-grabbing that would lead me to view it in such a positive manner. But far be it from me to be a genetic essentialist who views every aspect of personality as something that can be boiled down to a few lines of DNA. (TATTC causes an ankle-squeezing fetish, while TAATC would cause a propensity for water sports? Probably not.)

After all, sexual desires are far from immutable. Incredibly enough, when I first started dating Master I wasn't turned on by spanking in the slightest. He tried it once or twice during sex, and when he asked me whether I liked it, I believe my exact response was to shrug and say, "Meh." But for some reason I grew to like it. It wasn't because Master pressured me; he stopped it after I told him it wasn't a turn-on, and only once we started using other aspects of BDSM, like bondage, did he reintroduce it. By that point, I had suddenly become a spaking whore. Even when it doesn't turn me on physically (get me wet, that is), I just love the physical sensation of a good spanking or paddling.

Everyone involved in BDSM - and increasingly more people who aren't - know what limits are. When Master and I began our first forays into kink, I found a "limit checklist" designed for people negotiating a scene. It was, in essence, a list of various kinky activities, which one could either mark as "major turn-on," "curious about," "not too interested but willing to try," and "hard limit; never ever ever." I filled it out for myself and showed it to Master, and that was our starting point. As I've pulled up the list since then and revised it, I've noticed an evolution - a softening, if you will - of what I'm willing to do. I still have some rock-hard limits (bestiality, scat play, watersports, anything involving breaking the skin, incest) that are so ingrained into my psyche by biology and society that I doubt I could ever be swayed. But there are others (anal play, sensory deprevation, and a whole host of others) that are now piquing my interest when they haven't before. For some of them it is because Master has introduced them to me and I liked them; for others, something about myself has changed, and even though I've never tried them before I suddenly think they sound interesting and fun.

It's for this reason that I'm skeptical of people who say they were "born" kinky/poly/some other sexual descriptor. I mean, certainly genetics plays a part, but we are not static creatures. We change a hundred times over the course of a lifetime, and though the seeds of kinkiness may have been there since birth, it was a million other influences that shaped me into the exact incarnation I am today.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

What to do

Master, at my request, is looking into the possibility of us going to a play party and/or BDSM club when I'm in town again next week. I'm excited, but also incredibly nervous. I have no idea what to expect or how to behave. I mean, I know basic etiquette - don't pick up someone else's toys without asking them, don't get in the way of a scene, yadda yadda - common sense stuff. But I'm still terrified that I'll make some terrible social gaffe.

Really, I get this way whenever I'm entering a new social situation. My first cross-country races and ski meets gave me the same trepidation. It doesn't make it any easier. >.<

Sunday, July 6, 2008

The only thing we have to fear

I keep up with a women's health community online, and by far the most common question asked by people on the board is something along the lines of, "I'm on hormonal birth control and my period isn't due for another week yet and I haven't ever actually had sex but my boobs are kind of sore and yesterday I was nauseous which may be because I had the stomach flu but I hear it's a symptom of pregnancy. AM I PREGNANT?!?!?!"

The fear and paranoia that so many young women have regarding pregnancy is baffling. If the number of questions of this sort are any indication, it seems a good portion of sexually active women - and some who aren't even sexually active - live in almost constant anxiety that the condom broke or they missed a pill or their IUD expelled and now they're preggo. Where does this irrational fear come from? Surely they've read up on the birth control that they're using and know the success/failure rates. After all, why the hell wouldn't you do research on something that can have such a large impact on your life? Just a few minutes of web searching would reveal that most birth control methods, particularly hormonal ones, have a success rate in the 90% range, even for "typical" use. Even the withdrawal method, which is so often ridiculed as an ineffective birth control method, can have a 96% success rate during "perfect use." (Granted, "typical use" has a 73% success rate, but that's still a hell of a lot better than nothing.)

Then again, maybe they don't know these things. Fear is born from ignorance, and it seems the conservative movement is premised entirely on keeping people ignorant. I read in my local paper not too long ago that a Minnesota study showed an increase in abortions among teens (though a decrease in all other demographic groups) in the past year or two, coupled with a decrease in the number of women using contraceptives. When one recalls the spate of investigations that revealed the inaccuracies and outright lies that abstinence-only education feeds to kids, and the current (but waning, fortunately) administration's stance on sex education, it only makes sense, sadly enough.

When I went to public school as a kid, parents were given a choice of which sex ed course to put their kids in either "abstinence-based," which said abstinence is preferred but didn't shy away from teaching about other forms of contraception and safer sex techniques, or "abstinence until marriage," which taught exactly what the name says - and nothing more. Fortunately for me, my parents are of the more progressive bent (most of the time), so they put me in abstinence-based.

Though I'm grateful for my parents' choice, the course still was woefully inadequate. Like most sex-ed courses, it was mostly about scaring kids away from sex. I got to see my share of explicit photographs showing advanced cases of syphillis, gonorrhea, and genital warts - but was never told that most STIs are treatable, even cureable. To their credit, the teachers were very good about dispelling myths on HIV/AIDS; never did I think that HIV could be spread via public toilet seats. In terms of contraception, however, basically all we learned about were condoms - male condoms, at that - probably because condoms also protect against STIs. Birth control pills were mentioned in passing, but that's about it. I didn't even know IUDs existed until I entered college, and I'd be willing to bet that the majority of college-aged women still haven't ever heard of them, despite IUDs being one of the most effective contraceptives available.

I partially blame my good-but-not-good-enough sex education on the one pregnancy panic I've had in my life, which occured a little over a year ago. This was before I'd started on any sort of birth control; the condom fell off at some point, probably after we'd finished and Master was pulling out, and though I didn't feel any semen get on/in my vulva I decided to get some Plan B from the school nurse just to be safe. Looking back on it later, I realized the chances of my getting pregnant were slim to nil - not only was it unlikely any sperm managed to get their way inside me, but my period had ended that day so it was basically impossible for there to be a viable egg for them to find. On top of that, I took the Plan B just as directed, reducing the possibiliy of pregnancy even further.

Even so, for the entire two weeks between taking the Plan B and seeing the nurse for follow-up, I was constantly wondering what if? what if? Keeping the baby was out of the question, but the nearest abortion clinic was all the way in the Twin Cities, to my knowledge. How would I get down there? There was no way I could tell my parents about it, but keeping a secret like that from them would tear me up inside. And then, of course, there was the small part of me that said I wouldn't have to get an abortion, that maybe having a baby would be okay. That part scared me the most.

Though the pregnancy test I took at my follow-up was negative, I couldn't truly relax until my period arrived, right on schedule, a week later. (Contrast that to now: I haven't had my period in... oh... two months? Three? (Cessation of menstruation is a side effect of the Mirena.) But I'm not worried in the least.)

And while I partially blame my own ignorance on my anxiety - I didn't know at the time how incredibly unlikely it was that I was pregnant - I know all too well that reason goes flying out the window when one is worried about something. Take for example all the parents who stay up late imagining all the horrible scenarios that could happen to their kids when they're just playing video games at a friend's house and lost track of the time. So while education does a lot to reduce fear of pregnancy, it can only do so much.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008


I just got back from my visit to see Master. It was so amazingly awesome! We went all around the city - and, of course, made up for all the lost time spent apart. ;)

We went to the gay district, where we visited a sex shop that I really like. It's run by a bunch of really cool women, and it totally flaunts the seedy, dark, dingy stereotype. It's more like a trendy boutique than anything. In any case, we got a nice riding crop. It's a bit on the short side, with a nice wide flap-thingie (whatever it's called) at the end. Master used it on me a couple times while we were in the basement at his house, but he couldn't hit very hard (*sad*) because his parents were sleeping upstairs, lol. I admit I was a little disappointed, since the light whipping he gave me didn't really satisfy my craving for a good, hard scene. But it couldn't be helped, and it certainly was enjoyable in its own right. Two minutes in heaven is better than one minute in heaven and all that.

What was really funny, though, was that we were walking all around the city after we bought the crop, which didn't fit in Master's messenger bag. So we had to walk around the city with a riding crop (albeit in a black plastic bag) sticking out and poking the random passerby.

We also met with M, who's having a lot of fun prodomming. However, she did have a bit of an accident during an erotic photo shoot and had to go to the emergency room with a rather embarrassing wound. The poor baby. :( When her prodom friends heard about it, they gave her a gift basket full of floggers and paddles and other toys. I hope she brings them up to school with her - or I get to see them next time I go down to see Master and her!

I have something of an infatuation with floggers, though I've never been on either the giving or receiving end of them. They look like they're exquisite, though, and from what I've heard/read of the sensations they produce, I'm practically salivating to have Master or M try one on me. It's possible that, once I actually experience a flogger, I'll find it won't be nearly as exciting as I imagine. But considering the wide variety of floggers and all the different sensations they can produce, I'm sure I'll find at least one type that I like.

Master, M, and I went to a BDSM shop with two of M's friends. Though one of them also seemed interested in kink, one of them was decidedly vanilla, lol. And though he was pretty good about being surrounded by leather hoods and harnesses and chastity belts and whatnot, he definitely was baffled by the entire thing. Sometimes I forget that most people don't like to mix pain with pleasure - I'm not used to having to explain it, since most of the time it never even comes up. So when M's friend asked, "Why in the world do you guys like this stuff?" all I could do was grin and shrug.

The BDSM shop was geared towards leathermen, so there wasn't much stuff specifically for women there, but there was an absolutely gorgeous elkhide flogger there! Aaaaah, it was so soft! It was also very well-balanced (according to M; I don't know enough to make a valid judgement). I think I'm going to save up for one. Yes yes. I think I shall.

Also, Master's going to look into us visiting a BDSM club and maybe even go to a play party next time I go to visit him. I hope we can - I really would like to meet new people in the community in person. Online is fun and all, but it's not the same experience as meeting people and watching them play.


Whenever Master was at his computer, I sat on the floor beside him and rested my head on his lap. As he ran his fingers through my hair, I couldn't think of any place I'd rather be. I can't wait to see him again.