Asking Permission

I’m still with the new dude, and for the most part, things are going well. We had a drama-filled encounter with some friends of mine, and he handled it super awesomely. While I was upset for my friend who was suffering, the issue let me see a side of the new dude that I really appreciated.

I’m struggling for a few reasons, though. One, I think he’s generally a quieter guy, but I’m not used to that, so sometimes I expect more conversation to happen. Two, I swapped my OkC profile to “Seeing someone,” and he said he would too…but 48+ hours later, and he still hasn’t, and he shows as having logged on a few times. This, in turn, is making me insecure and making me wonder if I should be concerned. He was the one pushing for exclusivity at first, so it’d be frustrating if he were seeing multiple people after that agreement was made. If you want to date around, just say so, and we can be open about it. I feel sort of nuts/in my head about it, though, and it makes it harder for me to bring it up. I don’t want to ruffle feathers. It is such an inconsequential thing, but yet, it still really bothers me, which bothers me more because I know it doesn’t really matter. Ugh.

Lastly, and on a totally different note, I’m not sure entirely how to incorporate D/s into things. In the bedroom, there’s an element of it. I don’t want to freak him out, though. He said he’s into toys and things insomuch as it turns me on, but I feel weird and extra freaky for wanting pain and things he isn’t really naturally inclined towards. He said something offhand today and I mentioned that it’d be hot, and he was all “you think everything is hot.” I’m sure he didn’t mean that negatively, but to me, it feels that way because I feel like I’m more screwed up in the head than he is in terms of my fantasies. I’m trying to take it slow and let things build, and just see what happens, but it’s difficult.

In the meantime, we have a rule that I’m to ask for permission before climaxing. This shouldn’t be difficult, but it’s hard as hell for me. I keep thinking it’ll be easier to ask next time. When we’re together, I don’t have an issue with it. When his hands are fucking with me, begging seems more natural. By myself, when he’s living his life and doing whatever, the thought of calling and interrupting his day to ask is humiliating and scary. I convince myself he’ll say no anyways, so why bother asking? It’s so stupid, because having to ask is hot as hell to me, and the thought that I would call and he’d say no is arousing too. I’m not really sure how to make it easier.

Sooo I have no clue how to go about dealing with these things, but that’s what I’ve been up to lately.

*edited* to add that I did at least tell him I was struggling to ask…worried that he’d judge me for the timing or I’d impose/interrupt him. He pointed out that the point is to give up control, which requires actually doing so and surrendering to him. Moreover, he reinforced that my asking turns him on, and is what he desires. Imposing implies that he wouldn’t want the call…I need to get it in my head that he wants my surrender, and that he gets off on that. Perhaps if I can frame it in my head as calling him pleases him, demonstrates my submission/obedience to him, than I will want to do it more.

It’s interesting, because he mentioned that part of the current arrangement we have is freedom. I’m allowed to touch myself however and whenever I want, as long as I ask for permission. It isn’t like he’s telling me to touch myself every day. He mentioned that he has no desire for the latter, because it may mean I was touching myself when I didn’t want to, which isn’t as thrilling for him. I tried, and will have to think of a better way to explain later, that if I’m touching myself in order to follow a rule, that in turn arouses me. Even if I didn’t want to before doing it, I’d enjoy it more because of that, because it meant I was doing it for him and the act of submission turns me on more than the touching. And, if something was really bothering me or I wasn’t able to enjoy it, I would let him know I was struggling, and if that really bothered him, we could waive the rule that time. As long as there’s consistency (like if waiving it, maybe require something different or extra time next time or something so that it isn’t too easy to skip out) it’s all good.

Slowly Incorporating Submission

A couple of things have been on my mind lately, as a result of different conversations and photos and things.

First, I can’t stop thinking about chains, handcuffs, and cages. Rope is great, but it has been over a year since I’ve been bound tightly enough that I couldn’t escape. As a result, while I still love it, I think I’m comfortable with it. I still feel like I can escape. Metal bondage doesn’t allow for that, which is frightening but also appealing.

The more I think about D/s, the more I get nervous. In books, Dominants are great about sensing when a submissive is nervous or afraid and tailoring their approach. I’ve never met anyone who was that observant. I’ve never had a Dom comfort me or talk me into a submissive headspace.

If I’m going to submit to someone on a deeper level, I need to build trust. Everyone emphasizes trust, which is great, but how do you build trust other than giving it time? How does someone assert control in small ways to build that trust?

I’ve been trying to think about ways to do that. One, I think service is a great way to do this. Bitch make me a sammich isn’t really the hottest or best way to exchange power, but little requests/commands like that change focus. In the book I’ve been reading, the Dom forces his potential sub to make eye contact, to answer questions immediately and without hiding. In my mind, introducing rules early on would help. I think it’d be best to have vanilla sex before kinky sex (or at least, mostly vanilla – no toys/bondage, but power dynamics ok). That said, even before that, a couple can establish some sexual tension and D/s dynamics.

For example, when we spend time together, he can require I ensure my legs are spread a certain amount to be available to him. I can be relegated to the floor. Maybe he’d have me kneel until I ask to sit differently – ways of forcing me to ask him for something. In ways like that and others, he can force me to acknowledge my submission and the fact that with that comes communicating all my needs, comforts, etc. to him.

My inclination is to endure or suffer in silence. I don’t make a lot of noise during play, and I don’t like asking for help or depending on others. D/s is all about enabling a submissive to depend on her Dom for order. If I want a D/s dynamic to work, I need to have honesty/communication/vocalizing drilled in early on. Thankfully, those are things that can happen with less sex, so they can happen earlier on in a relationship.

Thing is, do I bring that up with a potential Dom? Do we sit down and have a conversation about how to build trust/control? I mean, really, wtf is the protocol here?

Someone I was talking to did bring up an interesting point about pride, though. I mentioned how begging is difficult for me because it makes me feel like others will view me as weak or needy (but also how it’s super hot). He asked if thinking of begging as a submissive act that shows how good a submissive I am would help. I think it would, actually. If I had a Dom who encouraged begging, who acknowledged it and praised me for doing it – even if not giving me whatever I’m begging for – I think it would be a helluva lot more doable on my end.

I’ll do a lot to please my partner. If begging pleases him, and he makes it a positive act and not a degrading one, then I think I could take pride in it. I think, too, it would help to know that asking isn’t futile. I will vocalize a lot more if I know it won’t be futile or punished, like it has been in other aspects of my life.

Code d’Odalisque and Protocol

Edited to add: This is my 500th post. Crazy! Funnier still that it revisits something discussed in one of the first blog entries I posted.

Someone I’ve been talking to mentioned the Code d’Odalisque the other day, and I’d never heard of it. It’s essentially a framework and extensive set of protocols for a male dominant/female submissive sexual slavery relationship. Read it here.

The Code was interesting to read. I was a bit surprised that someone had the time and energy to create such a document. I mean, they include things all the way down to how to address other slaves in text. That’s a bit intense. There are some things that really appealed to me, though:

  • As a whole, the framework emphasizes legality, consent, and the protection of vanilla reputation.
  • There are contract and many safety precautions.
  • There’s an emphasis on existing for the Master’s pleasure – training, service, etc. along those lines – and being tortured with pleasure.
  • There are formalities and rituals for initiating a period of intense service and for earning a collar-like necklace (only they are incredibly specific that it be tahitian black pearls…).
  • There are clauses that require honest discussion.
  • Masters aren’t permitted to cut their slaves’ hair, or beat her face, scar her, or humiliate/degrade her.
  • There are protocols for interacting within a D/s relationship that are built on a foundation of respect and care for one another.

Those things all have positive elements to them. There are larger things that bother me, though.

  • The slave is required to have no sexual desires or plans of her own. She becomes a passive vessel for her Master’s fantasies. I’m all for my Dom using me for his pleasure, and taking my submission as an opportunity to play out fantasies…but I also want my fantasies to be acknowledged. They don’t have to be included in our play, that’s my Dom’s discretion, but I have desires, and I’m not going to pretend they don’t exist.
  • The slave should not take initiative. I’m sorry, but sometimes, it’s fun to turn the tables, insomuch as I’m horny as fuck and want to jump my Dom. He’s welcome to playfully punish me for it later, or I’m happy to ask for permission to take initiative, I guess, if I had too…but too much restraint makes for no fun.
  • Similarly, the slave should be silent unless spoken to. I get this for a scene, or maybe a long scene/weekend of crazy-intense protocol, but for a regular dynamic, no thanks. I want to converse and joke with my partner. I want to be able to snark at him and have him tease me back. That’s part of who I am and what makes me happy in my relationships.
  • The code says sentimentality and vulgarity should not be in the bedroom…I beg to differ.
  • Clothing must be sacrificed – the code suggests putting them under lock and key. I can understand rules about clothing, inside and outside of the home. Selecting every item and having no access to clothing is micromanagement I’m not interested in. The point is for the captivity to be reemphasized…but to some extent, I’d rather be trusted with the choice. If you want me naked at home, fine, then  make it a rule. If I disobey it, discipline me. But wouldn’t you rather have my submission when I am faced with an option and I voluntarily choose to ignore the clothing, rather than forcefully keep it from me?
  • Service for obedience’s sake isn’t appreciated. Service should only be sexual, and all other types are sort of spoken down about. Literally, to the extent that wearing an apron indicates lesser status because odalisques shouldn’t cook, it’s beneath them. Sometimes, I want to cook for my partner because I want to serve him in that way.
  • With that, I want my submission to be valued in ways outside sexuality. If I want to clean or do something as a service to make him happy, why not do that? I want to exist for his pleasure, not just sexual pleasure, as long as my needs are being met and he’ll listen to my wants, and we can work out daily life responsibilities in a way that isn’t overwhelming to either partner.
  • Solitary confinement as punishment. Being deprived of affection and/or love, or being ignored, are dealbreakers. I’d rather use pain, or write lines, or have an activity restricted, etc.
  • There’s a lot of emphasis on sharing and how to interact with guests. I’m not sure on this. If I were going to engage in M/s in a group setting with other Dominants, I like the idea of having etiquette for that scenario. I just am not OK with a protocol that allows  my Dom to share me at his discretion.
  • Sex slavery is listed as an adjunct to marriage. My ideal is to find a Dominant that I can marry. I want to be wife and submissive, not just tertiary sex slave.
  • A series of individual protocols: referring to myself in the third person (Master’s slave thinks…), having no name or being renamed, mandatory marking/branding, chanting, a six year limit on a relationship, slaves aren’t allowed to toast at dinner, slaves must have an empty glass by their side for semen only and can’t have their own beverage cup otherwise, capitalization protocols with people other than my Dom…basically there are a bunch of nitpicky things that bother me.

Overall, I don’t think the code has a middle ground. You’re either a sex slave, or you’re not. You’re in “occlusion” or “sojourn.” What about the in-between? I want a more flexible dynamic. I think it’d work having a set of very formal rituals and protocols that can be lived out in a fantasy weekend here or there. The rest of the time, though, I wouldn’t want to be in “sojourn,” I’d just want a lesser amount of protocol. In the bedroom, there can be an element of pleasure slave, sure, but in life, sometimes protocols get in the way.

Honestly, I don’t know what level of control or protocol works for me. I’ve never been in a D/s relationship like that. I’ve been in relationships with men who Top, and I’ve dated men into D/s, but I’ve never built a power exchange relationship. When I think of having rules for clothing, greeting, speech, eye contact, sitting, and more, it overwhelms and scares me. I want some rules. I want structure, discipline, and subservience. I want to serve my Dom’s desires and please him, to feel his control over me. I just think that can be achieved in a variety of ways, both sexual and service-oriented, not all with protocol.

I also know that I can’t start out with protocols galore and such. I need to start with small gestures of submissive, and gradually escalate as trust, affection, love, and comfort grow. I need to be led into it, too, and with lots of positive reinforcement and constructive conversations so that I can learn and accept my role thoroughly. Being a submissive at all is a new thing and requires training and gentle guidance for me, being one with a high level/frequency of power exchange would require even more.

That said, protocols I think make sense would include wearing a certain type or style of clothing that fits my Dom’s preference, addressing him as Sir, keeping a journal, sitting on the floor unless alone or have his permission, asking permission to orgasm, on certain days maybe being required to do something specific with him in mind, etc.

Rules I think make sense would deal with how to maintain communication, how to behave in his presence, pet peeves to avoid, habits I want to instill that he’s reinforcing, etc. For example, if I am trying to exercise more, we can talk and have him make it a rule or provide some form of accountability so that I can reach the goal that I want. Note that the emphasis is on his guidance to accomplishing goals that I set and we mutually discussed, not on him trying to change me outside my will or without my acknowledgement. (Manipulation should be acknowledged and consented to.)

But really, the dynamic I foresee is similar to a “normal” (non-kinky) couple. We’ll live our lives, and when it’s just us, I’ll refer to him differently, defer to his decision-making – but be allowed to debate and joke, try to do things that please him when I can, and be sexually available to him. He would provide opportunities for me to please him (i.e. it would make me happy if you did x,y,z), or directly ask (sternly so I know it’s really a command) me to serve him in some way. If I have a problem with something, I voice my concern. If I have needs not being met, I voice them. If I have wants, I voice them but he can determine whether or not they’re satisfied. My choices are to obey, to disobey and be punished, or to end the dynamic.

Submissive Shortcoming

I’ve wondered a lot about why my dating interactions with “Dominant” men always seem to fail. On the surface, it’s been obvious (distance, one of us is less into the other, etc). I’ve always wondered, though, if it was just that I got so nervous that I wasn’t really being myself. Maybe, had I been my normal, slightly snarky, bubbly self instead of shy, quiet, and totally acquiesing, they would’ve been more into it. A conversation with a friend tonight is leading me to believe that in fact, maybe it hasn’t worked because of who my normal self is.

It’s frustrating. I’ve always been nervous and afraid that more dominant men will rule me out as an option because I’m very type A and generally have my shit together in day-to-day life. I’m shy with new people, but otherwise, I’m outgoing and energetic. I have a lot of energy, am not afraid to ask questions, and I lack much of a filter. Dominant men frequently just have this flirtatiously commanding persona they embody around submissive females (usually the quiet, more timid types), and they almost never act like that with me. Really, the ones that do tend to be the very experienced men or women, oftentimes “old guard” folks or those over 35/40. (Random, but part of why black rose appeals to me a lot is that most of the people I’ve met in that group tend to be of that “old guard” mindset, and don’t immediately disregard my submissive potential.)

I’m not submissive with everyone, but that doesn’t make me any less submissive. I have opinions, and I’m a planner and taking charge doesn’t frighten me. I’m capable of managing, both myself and others, but that doesn’t make me any less obedient to those with authority above me. I’m not totally new and inexperienced, but there’s a lot I have to learn and I’m very willing to be taught.

I’m strong, but I’m willing, able, and in fact sometimes near desperately desire to submit to someone else’s will. People never seem to see it. My closest friends see it, but potential partners never do. I’m a people pleaser. I will go out of my way to make sure those around me succeed, are happy, and have what they need. I will use all of my passion, energy, and enthusiasm to effectively serve my partner. It just takes me a bit longer to get there.

I can’t act like that with anyone. For me, it takes a great deal of trust. We have to have fun together, get along as friends, and have physical chemistry. I have to respect you, your actions, and the decisions you make. If you start taking a stronger/more commanding tone with me, I’ll respond to it. You’ll notice my starting to look out for your desires more and more.

And really, if you take that commanding, flirtatiously dominant persona with me from the beginning and you’ve establish some quick initial respect, you’ll generally be able to see the change in my reactions to you.

I guess I just wish men would see the potential behind the day-to-day self, and would be willing to take on someone who is maybe a bit more of a challenge, or at least is more teasing in nature. I want men to take on a more commanding air in my presence.

November Arrives

Welcome to Fall, officially! Daylight savings time still throws me, having spent a good deal of life in a state that didn’t follow it. I like light in the mornings, but I miss light in the evenings. Such is life.

I welcomed fall with a party with many of my good friends.  I mixed several different friend groups, which worked surprisingly well. We baked lots of goodies – I now have a fabulous recipe for both deviled eggs and spinach dip – and drank lots of alcohol. I haven’t danced and had that much fun in a while. It was really great to see so many people I care about in one place. I forget sometimes, in my hatred of groups, that the point of parties is to see all the people you like in one place. I may need to have parties more frequently…

I had a couple of friends really show me how much they care. I was in some awkward situations romantically, and they sort of saved the day.

I’ve talked a lot to friends this week about some difficult dating situations. It’s hard. I want to find love and a partner to share my life with. I feel ready for that. At the same time, being single is better than settling. I need to feel excited to share my life with my partner, not worrisome.

Moreover, while D/s appeals and is of interest to me, I’m still working out how to build trust to have such a relationship. Fundamentally, I still want someone to be a partner in life with, to respect me and cherish me as I am. I am ok with sexual manipulation, but I don’t want someone to mind fuck me in everyday life. I don’t want someone to manipulate me into being codependent or surrendering control. I want open, honest communication, and as I care more about you and trust you more, as I submit to you more, my need and desire to please you will naturally increase. It doesn’t need to be manipulated further.

The problem is, if you’re unclear or vague in order to get me to need or think about you more, than I’m left unsure. Yes, I may think about you more, but it isn’t in a positive way. I want my partner to inspire and motivate me to be the best version of myself (and I the same to him), and if I’m constantly questioning your level of desire, affection, happiness, I can’t do that. Insecurity is not my best self. Make me secure, be open, and then I’ll think about you all the time in happy ways. I’ll want to go out of my way to make you happy.

On a totally separate note, I’m debating trying to participate in NaNoWriMo. I wouldn’t commit to 30,000 words, but I really want to write a new story, maybe more than one. The question really just goes back to what level of character development I want, how much romance v. kink, and are there are new themes I can bring into my writing?

Revisiting Rules: The Why

I posted a week or so ago about how I like rules and structure in life, and how that permeates seemingly every aspect of my life. I realized today why that is, and how that impacts how I view myself. It’s amazing how 1) once you notice something about yourself, you see it everywhere and 2) one other person can give you so much insight about yourself.

So, I like rules, structure, and discipline. It’s what I value more than almost anything else. I realized – I had almost no discipline or structure in my family life or growing up. The only discipline I’ve had has been self-installed, provided through school, or from God (or my interpretation of my spirituality).

Creating and following my own standards and rules has given me the order I need to get through life successfully. Lately, I’ve been super stressed out, and I had a hellish week last week. I feel like I completely humiliated myself more than once at work, and then I got super strung out a couple of times this past weekend – high strung to a level I haven’t been in a while. I recognized that this weekend – that my inability to control things lately has made me a bit crazy, and my lack of kink or surrender has just further facilitated that – but tonight, it hit home even more.

After a date’s comment a few weeks ago, I started noticing that I have a tendency to act like a know it all, be stubborn, or speak before thinking in ways that overstep boundaries I feel are in place. Acting like a know it all with friends is something I thought I got past in middle school. Letting my impatience and stubbornness impact my ability to stay humble, respectful, and deliberate at work is something I thought I got through too, but I’ve messed that up. In the scheme of my losing my internal shit the last few weeks, I overstepped my self-imposed discipline, which I haven’t been able to let go. I disrespect myself and am so embarrassed for my lack of discipline in these work situations.

I know that while yes, at the exact moment of these incidents, people may have thought differently of me, but likely forgot it immediately following. I need to let it go. All I can do is know that this is a tendency, work to improve and forgive myself, and try to be as best a person as I can moving forward. I think I may discuss it with my immediate supervisor, just to ask him if he has any feedback on how I can manage those situations and if it’s in my head. I can apologize for being too opinionated or overstepping his management, and ask him to be honest if he feels I’ve done that.

Anyhow, more reason why sometimes, I think I’m too harsh on myself. I set up high standards, then sometimes lack discipline to follow them, and instead of being able to be punished and let it go, I harp on it over and over. Someday, I hope to find someone who can give guidance and instill structure in my life.

Rules

I had a strange realization tonight involving rules. Basically, I like them (shocker, I know).

I’ve known my Myers-Briggs Personality type is an ‘ESTJ’ for a while now.  “The Supervisor.” Short summary:

ESTJs thrive on order and continuity. Being extraverted, their focus involves organization of people, which translates into supervision. While ENTJs enjoy organizing and mobilizing people according to their own theories and tactically based agendas, ESTJs are content to enforce “the rules,” often dictated by tradition or handed down from a higher authority.

ESTJs are joiners. They seek out like-minded companions in clubs, civic groups, churches and other service organizations. The need for belonging is woven into the fiber of SJs. The family likewise is a central focus for ESTJs, and attendance at such events as weddings, funerals and family reunions is obligatory.

Tradition is important to the ESTJ. Holidays, birthdays and other annual celebrations are remembered and observed often religiously by this type. The ESTJ is inclined to seek out his roots, to trace the family heritage back to honored ancestors both for a sense of family respectability and for a sense of security and belonging.

Service, the tangible expression of responsibility, is another key focus for ESTJs. They love to provide and to receive good service. The ESTJ merchant who provides dependable service has done much to enhance her self image.

ESTJs have an acute sense for orthodoxy. Much of their evaluation of persons and activities reflects their strong sense of what is “normal” and what isn’t. ESTJ humor is frequently centered around something or someone being off center or behaving abnormally.

ESTJs promote the work ethic. Power, position and prestige should be worked for and earned. Laziness is rarely viewed with ambivalence nor benevolence by this type.

Anyone who knows me would peg me as this to a T. It’s sort of creepy.  (Sidenote – not focusing on it in this post, but the service part also rings true given my submissive tendencies and the orthodoxy part explains why so many say I ‘do vanilla well.’) So basically, I’ve known that I like rules for a while. I never really noticed how much that “liking of rules” thing permeated my life, though.

For example, my job involves enforcing rules and sometimes improving rules. I got my Masters in a topic that would me allow to inform and create rules. Every internship I’ve had has involved enforcing or creating rules. Most people I meet professionally feel to removed from projects and policy…but me, I love enforcing rules (in my case right now, enforcing policies and federal law within certain federal agencies). Watchdog-type work suits me.

Then, in my private life, I seek out power exchange relationships. Part of this is kinky sex, open communication, increased trust, etc… but a large part is because in a D/s relationship, the rules are enumerated, whereas in ‘normal’ relationships there are either no rules or it’s guesswork. I like having boundaries to follow and enforce in my life, and I respect people who can set and enforce boundaries.

I really felt this click tonight though when, while playing board games, I realized I like games with a lot of rules. I don’t function well when there are no rules, or the rules involve going outside of the logic-structure. In Civilization, parts of the game force you to ignore the rules –> I hate this. I like being able to keep track of where I stand and I despise doing things wrong. Rules help me stay within what is normal and they outline a structure for me to get ahead in life (or specific situations).

Summary – I think the ESTJ personality is 1) predisposed to some type of BDSM or power dynamic and 2) is code for control freak.