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.

25 Things About my Sexuality

1 year update found here: https://inquisitiveexplorer.wordpress.com/2012/11/25/25-things-about-my-sexuality-revisited/.

Many of my fetlife friends have been posting these. The trend is based on this website: http://25thingsaboutmysexuality.blogspot.com/. I don’t have the nerve to post my 25 things quite so publicly (on fetlife), but here’s mine.

  1. I’m a masochist. I love pain. I love way it makes me shudder, scream, and sometimes cry. I love how it gives me a reason to fight and struggle, yet simultaneously can guarantee my surrender. I like submitting to it, I like knowing someone is getting off on inflicting it. I also have a really high pain tolerance. Don’t be afraid to hurt me – I can take it, and if it gets to be too much, I’ll say so.
  2. I’m afraid of my own masochism. Despite all the things I just mentioned that I love, I’m afraid that my masochistic desires will prevent me from finding a relationship that will satisfy me. I’m afraid I’ll put my trust in the wrong person and end up hurt in the bad way. I feel somehow partially damaged for desiring, craving, and enjoying pain.
  3. I find it difficult to vocalize my feelings, from emotions to screaming from pain, it’s all hard for me, even more so in public play scenarios. In private, if I feel comfortable with you, I will make an effort to relax and let sounds happen. In public, I tend to withdraw vocally and it takes a bit to make me make noise. I’ve been told my non-verbal cues are explicit enough to make up for it, but others have been frustrated or disconcerted if I don’t scream from what some would consider heavy pain.
  4. If I start uncontrollably shuddering during play, almost 99% of the time it is a good thing. Usually, this happens after an intense amount of pain, although rope and other things with certain people evoke it as well. This reaction internally resembles something like aftershocks of a climax, and can be prolonged for hours. There may or may not be accompanying sexual arousal, but even without it, it’s still physically and mentally very satisfying for me.
  5. I can slip into subspace, but loud background noise gets in the way. I love feeling spacey and sated, especially when it’s combined with the aforementioned shuddering.
  6. I love pushing my limits. I’m pretty stubborn, and I enjoy seeing how much I can take. If it’s bondage, I like seeing how long I can stay in a position, or how much I can contort myself into a new one, etc. I tend to have more difficulty finding people who can push me to my limit. I love nothing more than playing with someone who is willing to challenge me, especially if their will is stronger than mine.
  7. With that, I will safeword if I need to but it is difficult for me. When I combine my own stubbornness with my innate desire to please, it gets hard to stop something.  If I’m petrified or freaking out or something and my Top doesn’t notice, I will bring it up, and if I don’t feel comfortable enough to do so then I shouldn’t be playing with that person.
  8. Realistically, I think most of the times that I’ve safeworded have been out of concern or fear that the Top playing with me was tired, sick of playing, etc, not out of need on my end.  I worry a lot about pain play or bondage being too focused on me, thus being work for the other person. It helps me a lot to hear whether or not my partner is enjoying himself. It also helps if I know in particular that the person enjoys whatever we’re doing – rope play with a rigger, pain play with someone who considers himself a sadist, etc.
  9. I love to write, and have written erotica for many years. None of it is nonfiction, but certain individuals have at times been the catalyst to my writing something down. I always appreciate feedback and interesting ideas. Someday, I might go on and write an erotic romance novel, but I need spare time first.
  10. I find comfort, relief, and pleasure in consistency, rules, etiquette, and protocol. Simultaneously, the intensity, extremity, and commitment of those things scares me and puts me off quite a bit. I haven’t figured out a good balance yet. This is a large part of what drives my rare submission, but also is a lot of what scares me about a D/s relationship.
  11. I have a love/hate relationship with light humiliation, in terms of being flustered or embarrassed. I like being made to blush. It doesn’t take much to get me to that point either – talking about sex, teasing, etc. does it quickly. I like the dynamic that type of teasing creates, and I like (and hate) the level of vulnerability that type of interaction fosters.
  12. I was raised Catholic and grew up with a Mormon best friend. I don’t attend services, but I do believe in and have a relationship with God. I don’t think sex should only be after marriage, but I do take issue with having NSA hookups, one night stands, or casual sex (defined in this case as intercourse) without some form of commitment/ongoing dynamic.
  13. I love and adore bondage, but rope bondage more than anything. I love the experience of being bound and the intimacy and sensuality that can be shared. I like the feeling of complete helplessness. I like testing my flexibility, struggling, and not being able to escape. I love the feeling of rope on my skin, the scent of jute, the bite of the binding. I enjoy bondage sexually – it definitely pushes my buttons – but I can also enjoy it as a mental release. I find safety and security in the bindings, and it does things for my stress level and mental state that I bet would rival therapy.
  14. I try to be very open minded, but at heart, sometimes I’m a conservative Indiana girl. I don’t know how to handle polyamory, queer identities, sex in public, and other things sometimes. I can get really awkward, and I don’t know the proper way to interact. Please don’t take this to mean that I am disproving, judging, or in any way responding negatively if you fall into these categories. If you tell me how to act or set the tone, I’ll do my absolute best to match it as quickly as possible. It’s just a hard to manage “I’ve never dealt with this, what do I do?!” reaction.
  15. I have horrible difficulty asking for what I want, including asking people to tie me up and/or hurt me, directing them to best please me, voicing my desires, etc.  I appreciate it when my partners make me talk about things, even when it’s embarrassing and hard for me (in fact, as mentioned above, sometimes the forced vocalization and resulting embarrassment can be arousing in and of itself). I blush, stammer, hide, etc. sometimes, and it’s better when people push me into vocalizing. On this same note, I find initiating contact with potential play partners extremely difficult, and greatly appreciate initiative in a partner.
  16. I’m not extremely sexually experienced. I’m not a virgin, but I haven’t had many sexual partners. In fact, I’ve done kinky things more than I’ve done certain sexual things.  I have a healthy sex drive, but as points above indicate, I’m not overly promiscuous.
  17. I find everything about hidden control in public to be incredibly arousing. Remote controlled vibrators, hidden rope harnesses, sneaky bites or pinches, very discreet play in a dark semi-private space – all of these things push my buttons like none other. That said, I highly value privacy and propriety, and have to trust that my partner will protect my reputation.
  18. I love to dance, and at different points in my life I’ve taken tap, ballet, hip hop, swing, tango, salsa, and broadway dance classes (some for much longer than others). Jazz/broadway style and hip hop are where most of my background lies. This is most relevant sexually in terms of my flexibility, which tends to surprise people a bit. I find ballroom dancing especially to be a great manifestation of power control, and a man who can spin me around a dance floor or keep up at a club is a whole different type of sexy.
  19.  I had a traumatic childhood experience with inter-female sexuality, and as a result I’m very, very hesitant to do anything sexual with a girl. I’ve loosened up on this a bit more over the last year, and am more open to playing in a kinky way with a female – especially as part of a couple who is topping me – but it’s still an often uncomfortable zone for me.
  20. Orgasms are strange for me. I can have a “mini” climax rather easily, but I’ve only had more intense orgasms a few times. Climaxes and shuddering from pain are their own separate category of pleasure. Too frequently, I get performance anxiety, especially in public play scenarios.
  21. I love to cuddle! I adore hugs and snuggling, and once you’ve welcomed it I’ll forever be happy to be a cuddle buddy. These feelings are amplified tenfold after a scene.
  22. More than I ever thought I would, I like edge play. The bite of fear thrills me. My reaction to fear scares me sometimes, but I do enjoy it. I’m curious about takedowns, kidnapping things, etc. (but only with role play).
  23. I’m entirely too curious for my own good. My curiosity has led me to try things I would never have considered, and usually I’m a “try it once before ruling it out” kind of person. There are many things that are going to take a lot of time, finding the right person, the right level of trust, etc. to do, but there are few things that I would rule out forever.
  24. I enjoy a dynamic where my partner is amused by my antics. I am very easily amused, and humor is important to me even during play. I enjoy it when my partner is also amused or is amused by my amusement, if that makes sense. That knowing, slightly condescending, stern look touched with humor can get me every time. Enjoying this dynamic is a large part of why I usually play with and date men who are older than myself. I’m not opposed to a younger guy, but I’ve yet to feel that same dynamic with a younger man. I will point out here, though, that there is a fine line, and if the condescension steps across it I become incredibly snarky and pissed off.
  25. I’m driven by my desire to make those around me happy. I vigilantly strive to please people. This drives my more submissive side. My snarky, independent side has spawned a switch-y being who may emerge at some point in the future, but it would definitely be more of a service top thing.

Ice Ice Baby

My apartment is frigid. We have no heat currently, my room has two huge windows, and my room is very large. Combined, it’s ice cold. I’m wearing sweatshirts and every blanket I have, and I’m still cold.

I’m also craving pain like an addict. I’m longing for a good, intense flogging/paddling/whipping. While I adore nipple pain and torment, it’s an entirely different type of endorphin and feeling. It’s been a long time since my limits have been pushed with implements.

It’s getting to the point when I’ve got things planned several weeks out…time is seriously flying. Craziness! I only have two more classes of budget policy, which is pretty amazing. Then we switch to global health.

I keep going back and forth between being afraid of and nervous about a long term D/s relationship versus excited (as opposed to purely a bedroom thing or simple bottoming). Power exchange has huge appeal to me, and on many levels I think it would be very liberating. On the other hand, when I’m as busy as I am now I could see myself getting easily frustrated by rules and priorities and just generally getting pissed off by an expectation that I would submit. At the same time, when I’m most likely to feel like that, I’m most likely to need a good pain session…so maybe it’d all work out?

I’m almost afraid to try. You spend all this time thinking you want something, but really, who knows without trying it? What happens if I try it and it doesn’t work for me at all? I almost feel traitorous entering into a relationship when I’m uncertain about the nature of it. I guess I’m still trying to figure out what balance of D/s and vanilla I need to maximize happiness for all involved. I’m comforted by my young age – I know I at least have time to figure it out. I’m really in no hurry at all.

In other randoms…I bought a new raincoat and super cute heeled boots this weekend, I got paid (even though 1/4 was taken for taxes 😦 ), I got to spend time with a variety of good friends over the last few days, and I’m still doing well at work. I also finally got to catch up with my friend whose mom died, which was a relief. I’m glad she’s making it through ok.

D/s Interactions in an LTR

*Edited to add that I really don’t know anymore how much I desire this type of relationship, but most of these things appeal on some level. I just don’t know that I’d ever want them all, all the time.*
These are elements I want in an eventual long term D/s relationship:
  • When my Dom sits on the couch, sitting at his feet rather than by his side, his hand on my neck or in my hair.
  • When out in public, wearing some form of necklace or token to signify my Dom’s power in our relationship.
  • Occasionally going out to dinner, a movie, etc. with hidden toys – ropes harnesses, remote vibrators, butt plugs, possibly even discreet nipple clamps, etc. and having to maintain the vanilla facade. This would be most fun when going out with my Dom, but could also be done when going out and about my business alone.
  • Needing to ask permission to play with myself or to orgasm.
  • Being required to write down sexual fantasies, curiosities, or vulnerabilities and my Dom having full access to my writings so as to promote open communication. Or, rather, being forced to vocalize them in different ways.
  • Being required to maintain eye contact when discussing anything kinky, emotional, sexual, or generally difficult. Basically, not being allowed to hide, even in that minute way.
  • Having my Dom order for me when out, even if just asking me what I want then telling the waitress.
  • Holding my wrist, rather than my hand, or walking with his hand on my lower back.
  • Having potential clothing restrictions, insomuch as “wearing a skirt once a week” or a certain type of panties, not anything crazy micromanaged, just general preferences or occasional requirements.
  • Having my limits pushed, with pain and other experiences. I want to be challenged.

*Edited 5 months later to add that the thought of all of these things at once in a relationship overwhelms and frightens me into not wanting power exchange at all. This is an idea of general things in a power exchange relationship that appeal, but in no way would I or could I have all of these all the time. At least not at this point in my life.*