Book Review: This is Who I Am (Master of Shadowlands)

This is Who I Am (Masters of the Shadowlands 7) by Cherise Sinclair

This is the seventh of the Master of Shadowlands series, all of which have overlapping characters. Cherise Sinclair is one of my favorite erotica authors, and this is another win for her. I love Sinclair’s writing because of it’s authenticity in terms of relationship dynamics and BDSM. Furthermore, she caveats her books by telling readers to remember that in real life, men can’t read your mind – I appreciate that honesty, and it comes through in the books themselves as well. Character development is key for me, and the characters in this series all make me feel. I cry when they cry, I get turned on when they’re turned on.

This particular book is about an older woman who was kidnapped as part of a human trafficking ring and then rescued. The hero helped free her, but in doing so forced her to feel in front of slavers she’d spent months freezing out. The hero is a sadist, and the protagonist a masochist. Against her own interests, the protagonist repeatedly needs and seeks out the hero/sadist as she is forced to accept her masochism.

Aside from the jerk-off material, suspense plot line (kidnappers aren’t fully arrested), and romantic story, this book rang true to me because of the protagonist’s feelings about herself. I struggle sometimes to accept my masochism (and kink in general, at times), striving instead to be “normal.” Sinclair clearly emphasizes that what is “normal” and what is “right” don’t contradict how you process emotions and what you desire sexually. Sinclair writes about the protagonist’s foggy state of mind – when things get stressful and it’s been a while since a pain session, the world isn’t in focus. Pain helps her release and focus, let go, and feel again – not just feel at all, but feel positive feelings too. — That resonated with me strongly, because pain for me is more than an endorphin rush or surrendering of control, but it helps me feel pleasure in all aspects (not just sexual ones) when before I had disassociated.

I recommend this book to anyone into kink, or anyone interested in a good portrayal of S/m.

“She wanted that ruthless part of him. With him, she wouldn’t have to beg for more, because he’d force her to where the sharp edge between pain and pleasure slipped away, and he’d keep her there, where her soul was bared to him.”

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DO:Fusion 2013

It’s taken a while for me to really want to write about this, partially because it wasn’t the most eventful of weekends kink-wise.

The weekend overall was good. I spent a lot of time at the Primal Fires, which was really cool. I enjoyed the drumming, fire spinners/dancers, and massive bonfires. I am not pagan, but I do connect to myself more in that type of situation. I also attended some of the scheduled programming, in that I went to the perv pride parade, the bare! stories event, and the burlesque show. All were enjoyable. I really liked the stories part – I love hearing about other people’s experiences. I joke, but seriously, sometimes I can be a nosy bitch.

Other milder things – I hosted an ion for board games that got a great turnout. I also did a bunch of sparklers, roasted some marshmallows, and hung out with great friends, all of which was amazing.

I had a sort of strange/disconcerting experience with play. I only played once over the weekend, with someone I’ve played with before. Some caveats: I hadn’t played since March (so 3 months), and I’ve never played fully to the point of sobbing. I’ve teared up a couple of times. I cried real tears twice, both from a singletail after just a few minutes, not from hard pushing or lengthy beatings, never from impact play. I’d also eaten only about 30 minutes prior to our scene.

I didn’t intend initially for this to be a rough scene, so I didn’t line up any friends for extra cuddles. I didn’t want to put anyone out either, especially since everyone seemed to have plans and things going on. As my prior posts indicate, I’d been in a weird space leading up to the event, and after discussing it, the Top said he’d be down pushing me to tears. I really needed to release some emotion, so I was up for it. We had a very intense (for me, at least) scene, where he was doing very heavy impact play – think paddles, spanking, punching, and crowbar. I broke down into sobs, all was well.

I’ve never needed much aftercare with him before, so we didn’t do much, and then off we went to walk around and hang out. I began feeling more and more out of it, dropping from the play. I tried to meet up with a friend to lend her support, and the pain kicked in hardcore as the adrenaline wore off. I tried to get back to our campsite, and stumbled up a hill. I somehow made it to the DXS campsite, where some friends helped up my bloodsugar and walk me back to my campsite. I got very ill en route, and passed out pretty quickly.

Lessons learned – don’t eat so near to a scene, and discuss lengthier aftercare up front.

Reality of this, though, is that I don’t want to impose on my friends for aftercare. It makes me feel pitiful, and discarded by the person I played with. I want aftercare with the person inflicting the pain. The only exception to this is when that person is part of a couple and I’m friends with them both, in which case either person works for aftercare. Otherwise, if someone can make me so vulnerable and expect so much trust, then I deserve the same in return. If they can break it, they can fix it. If someone doesn’t want to share that intimacy, I don’t want to share play.

There are people who can do that casually, as in outside of a relationship. Unfortunately, that’s hard to find. Frequently, either myself or the other person gets emotionally attached outside of the kink, and one of us doesn’t reciprocate.

So, for now, I’m being much more hesitant about play. Rope is fine, since it’s a bit more tame. A light flogging, sure, why not. Anything remotely pushing limits – I need something more. Hopefully, I’ll find a way to make that happen sooner rather than later.

#DO:WF

Wow, what a crazy weekend, and holy shit how things have changed in a year.  I’m probably going to post a few separate things to process everything going through my head, but for now, I’m going to go with a daily recap. First off, for more information on Dark Odyssey and associated events, click here or visit this group on fetlife.

Friday

I started the weekend right by taking off Friday from work. I’m very glad I did, as it gave me time to get ready, pack, go to target, and check-in/register early during the day. I was originally planning on rooming with three friends, but then last minute ended up adding a fifth person to our room. We also had two others use our room to store bags and change. It got a bit crowded, but worked out all right. I’m glad I stayed in the host hotel again, as it makes everything a little more relaxing and the whole experience sort of becomes a mini-vacation.

I went to one class on Friday, “Electricity 101 with Mister Sean.” Recurring theme of the weekend – stun guns and cattle prods scare the shit out of me. It’s the noise combined with the literal shock of it. I logically know it won’t be all that painful, but I can’t help the innate fear. (Similar to needles and knives – no matter how much I enjoy it, I’m still scared). I tried a new toy in class, a folsom tens unit. It’s a lot stronger than other toys. I’m not a fan of the jumpy muscle feeling, but I admit that with electrodes from this unit on the inner thighs it’d probably make a great orgasm.

I did a lot of socializing on Friday, from dinner at B.Smiths (fabulous!) with friends, to the burlesque review, to late night chattering. I also perused the vending, but held off on buying things to ponder it. I had one scene Friday night involving rope and some sadism, a few of my favorite things. My nipples were tormented for a good portion of our lengthy scene, and they are still bruised…I got out of the shower on Sunday and one was bleeding. I’m always a little disturbed by how fragile my nipple are. I guess I should be thankful that they’re that sensitive?

Saturday

Saturday morning started early with some coffee and Lady Aisha’s class on alternative beatings. I really enjoyed this class because it emphasized some basic themes of negotiation and how/where to hit. I had volunteered to be a demo bottom, although there really wasn’t much need for it. Some of my friends used a few of the implements on my ass, and I gave a few whacks to a friend with a paddle. I then went to the “Better Blowjobs” class. I learned a bit about human anatomy, but I was a tad disappointed that there wasn’t a demo. I also learned that petroleum/lip gloss melts condoms. After lunch, I went to a discussion circle about topping. It’s interesting to think about topping and learn about that perspective since I normally bottom. I have a list of insights that I’m going to ponder at some point.

I watched a chick flick with friends (napping…we suck at it), had some dinner, than went to the drag queen a capella show (which was AWESOME). I also bought a leather strap and acrylic paddle from vending (leather by Danny, website here), which I’m super pumped about.  Saturday was a bit stressful because a bunch of friends bought day passes, and I felt pulled in a bunch of directions. I started the play part of the evening by getting beat up on by someone new, a friend of a friend who is newer to the scene. He used his cane and my two new toys, and it was really fun. I love the acrylic paddle because it can deliver thud and sting, and it’s easy for people to be a bit heavy-handed with it. Plus it’s pretty! All that aside, this was a second play instance where the person hurting me had a shit-eating grin, and that just makes me all happy inside. I love being hurt by people who are clearly having fun doing it.

After that, I had a very intense scene with someone else I’d never played with before. I probably needed more build up during that scene, but I think that was the highest number of times I’ve had to yellow before. I was tearing up/on the verge of sobbing, and I hadn’t expected that. Recurring theme of the weekend 2 – beating my calves is going to be a soft limit from now on, as are single-tails.

I socialized a bit more and came down from that scene, then I decided to go see what some friends were up to. I gathered my courage and went to a “sexy funtime party.” Last year, I went to this party and was a bit freaked out and awkward the whole time.  A lot has changed since then. Context here, is that normally I’m pretty sexually reserved. I don’t usually do a lot of sexual play outside of lengthy friendship/relationships. That said, I was really amped up this weekend, and honestly, I wanted to get down and dirty. There was some internal debate about whether or not people would judge me if I got slutty, but by Saturday night I’d gotten to the “fuck you if you judge me” stage and figured why the hell not. (To clarify, when I talk about slutty for me, it’s anything more than making out with someone when I don’t know them very, very well.) I went to the party, drank a bit, flirted, got beat on by a good friend, and did some sexy things with a few other friends. I’m not usually one for public sexual activity either, so I was a little embarrassed that a few people I didn’t know too well saw me doing some things…but all the same, lots of fun :).

Sunday

Since I was up until 5am at that party, Sunday morning was not my friend. I did drag my ass out of bed to go to an 11:30 rope class. I’m glad I did, too, because I learned a few new ties that I can use and enjoy. I also got super rope spaced out from a simple elbow bondage tie…what can I say, I really like restrictive rope bondage. After lunch, I crashed and ended up passing out for several hours. I was disappointed in myself for missing a few classes, but I also needed to get sleep or I knew I wouldn’t make it through the night. There was dinner, then the gender blender show.

My first scene Sunday was a casual thing to test out my switchy side. I’d had one scene where I cotopped a guy, but it was mainly sensual teasing with a wartenburg wheel, and it was different because my partner in crime was his longtime partner. This time, a really good friend and I beat up on another friend. We were all cracking up hysterically the entire time, which was really entertaining. I need to learn a bit more about where to not hit, but I quite enjoyed getting a bit sadistic. (Third recurring theme: I’m a bit of a sadist.)

I then went to get hurt by a female top I know. It was really intense, and involved lots of screaming on my end. I was shaking for at least 30 minutes afterwards, but really enjoyed it. I followed that up with socializing, then violet wand play with a couple I know from Rapture. I really enjoy the violet wand – the shocks surprise me, which makes me giggle, and the pain is all sensual for me. I really want to try out some conductive rope at some point.

Weekend Thoughts

I need to have a little less stress next time. That means 1) less people in the room, or only people I know uber well, 2) more sleep, or scheduled naptime 3) more liquids! and 4) firmer “no”s and less vague commitments.

I’m switchy. I don’t have any desire to be “Dominant” and be on the top-side of power exchange in a D/s context, but I like teasing and hurting people that enjoy it, and I don’t mind occasionally having people at my mercy. So, ideally, I’d be in a relationship with a guy where I was primarily his sub, but then maybe occasionally I could have my way with him or  together/separately we could top another mutual friend. I don’t know, but the evolution continues.

Pain to my calves hurts like a motherfucker and is a new soft limit. Single tails are a new soft limit because they cause instant tears. Fear gets me going – someone scared the hell out of me with a stun gun, but the look in his eyes and the vulnerability turned me on something fierce.

More sexy fun things!

New Erotic writing: Masochistic Desires

In theme with current fantasies, I wrote a new story. Here’s a snippet:

After years of playing and enjoying the BDSM community in my city, I’ve finally found a Dom who shares my kinks. I’m a submissive masochist, you see. While many enjoy rough play, even within the kinky world my desires run along the edge. I don’t want someone to just take me hard, but I also want the wicked gleam that promises evil things are coming my way. I want to revel in the darkness, to scream, to struggle, and eventually to surrender. I want to let the pain blossom inside me, curling through me and setting my nerves aflame. I want to feel the ache and bruises afterwards. I want my Dom to exploit my vulnerability and needs for his basest desires, with a side of tender love and savage fucking.

This rather…unique…combination hasn’t been easy to find. A few months ago, I met someone at a happy hour that immediately caught my eye. He almost immediately picked up on how to fluster me; I think I blushed during our entire conversation. His eyes lit up with mischievous glee for the entirety of our talk, and I went home dreaming about his big hands spanking me as that glint deepened into something far darker. We flirted, talked, and shared secrets and joked for a few weeks before finally going out solo. Our first date was completely vanilla, but at the end, he pinned me against my apartment door roughly, sucking and biting hard on my lower lip. It was then that I realized he might share a love for the harsher side of kink.

A few weeks later, I was certain he was sadistic, although I hadn’t gotten to experience to what extent. We had gone to fetish flea markets, classes, and happy hours. Sexually, we’d been taking it slow. We’d played lightly in public, sensually experimenting with his favorite flogger. We had sex, and again it was more vanilla than kinky, but the few bites and pinches had my desire spiraling out of control. After our second night together, we were lying in bed sipping wine and feeling much more open. I finally confessed how much I wanted him to hurt me, although I couldn’t bear to look at him while I forced the words out. I didn’t want to scare him away like so many others. I didn’t want him to just tease me or spank me — I wanted to suffer. I wanted him to make me cry, beg, and plead from unsatisfied desire (denial is a special kind of torture that my inner masochist adores). I wanted him to make me scream and sob in pain…and I wanted him to get off on it, take me to the edge, and then push me one step farther.

His silence was gut wrenching. He pulled me up for a passionate kiss, his desire taking me off guard. My body responded helplessly, and after another quick bout of hot sex, he looked me in the eye and whispered heatedly that he accepted the challenge.

On a Sunday night a week or two later, my Dom and I set up a date for the upcoming weekend. I wouldn’t be seeing him until the party on Saturday because our schedules conflict all week long. He let me know that he had rules for me for the week, if I agreed to obey them. He instructed me to tease myself. I was to choose one of the following to do each day: 1) tease my nipples for 15 minutes, 2) masturbate to the edge of orgasm without going over 3 times, or 3) tease my clit and g-spot with a vibrator for 10 minutes without climaxing. I could call and beg if it became too much and he would re-evaluate the situation. I have to check in each morning to let him know which option I chose and its eventual outcome. Friday and Saturday leading up to our date there would be no touching at all.

By the time our date night arrives, I’m incredibly needy. Earlier in the week, I had broken down over the phone, begging and in tears, but my Dom had talked me down. His husky voice telling me how much my suffering pleased him turned me on further, but dulled the pain of ruined orgasm to a persistent ache. During work on Friday, I could barely concentrate on my spreadsheets. My mind kept wandering to the following night’s promised torment, and I went through two pairs of panties. A coworker even asked if I was all right since I was so flushed from arousal. When Saturday finally arrived, we met at the party to set up with our friends, and the sexual tension could be cut with a knife.

Throughout set-up and the beginning of the party, my Dom teases me with casual caresses and kisses. He has me watch some friends do a sexy scene with wax and knives while imprisoning my hands behind my back and forcing my ankles apart with his legs. I can feel his hard cock pressing into my backside, and it ratchets my desire higher. I can feel my arousal soak my panties, and a surge of need empowers me. I struggle in his arms to turn around, looking up at him with my passion clear in my eyes. After a lingering look, I force myself to lower my eyes and I mumble a plea to him. I can feel his smirk, and he grips my chin to meet my gaze again. He knows how much more difficult it is for me to vocalize my desires when he’s looking at me, and I feel my cheeks redden even further. He raises an eyebrow, and I finally stutter out a plea for him to let me worship his cock with my mouth. His eyes darken, and he simply nods. I feel the excitement course through me, and slightly giddy, I grab his hand and pull him after me until we’re by a chair in the kitchen. It isn’t exactly the most private or classy place, but I don’t care. I look up to check with him and he seems aroused and amused, so I don’t worry about it too much.

I unbutton his jeans and happily realize he’s gone commando. I saucily push him down into the seat, and while he still seems amused he raises his eyebrows again, letting me know retribution awaits later. Knowing this is my only chance to have him at my mercy, I revel in my small moment of power. I make eye contact and kneel in front of him. I move one hand to caress his balls while the other strokes him gently, my thumb teasing the sensitive head of his hard cock. He lets me play for a moment, as I fondle him into full hardness. I kiss the tip, swirling my tongue around and capturing the small bead of pre-cum. I smile at him as I pull back and lick my lips. His eyes darken even more and he gruffly orders my hands behind my back. I obey, focusing more on worshipping his cock with my lips and tongue. I lay one small, wet kiss after another down his dick before licking up the underside. On my return, I engulf his cock in my mouth, sucking firmly and swirling my tongue again. I sense his patience waning, and — keeping my eyes locked with his — begin moving up and down. I can take him pretty far before I start to gag, and I work through my reflexes to let my warm, wet mouth suck him in deep.

To finish it, go here: http://www.literotica.com/s/masochistic-desires. If you read it, please vote! Feedback always appreciated.

Book Review: “Hurt Me So Good”

Something about being home just makes me need pain…it’s really a wonder I didn’t turn to full-on self-harm early on in my childhood. Seriously. Lately, though, with the stress of work, and pretty much everything, I really need the cathartic release of pain. I also am craving the pleasure of it.

I re-read an erotic novel last night that sort of highlighted my struggles with masochism: “Hurt Me So Good” by Joely Sue Burkhart. The quick summary/snapshot, courtesy of Amazon:

Victor Connagher is no stranger to the Dallas BDSM scene. As CEO of a risqué cable channel that caters to adventurous adults, he ensures the lifestyle is portrayed in a positive light. He even supports a local bondage club. Yet behind the cool, confident mask, Victor lives in fear. Once, and only once, he lost control of his inner Dom—and it cost him his fiancée. Now, no one knows how hard he works to keep his darker appetite for pain buried. No matter how much his saucy, confident associate producer makes his fingers itch to once again take up his riding crop. Shiloh Holmes is a sub, but she’s no doormat. She’s always suspected Victor has the skills to feed her insatiable need for pain, and now she’s found the perfect way to crack his formidable control. Develop a new reality show, America’s Next Top sub…and dare him to compete. Week after week, as Shiloh fearlessly challenges the real Victor to come out of hiding, he realizes his past mistake was only a blow to his pride. If he loses Shiloh, he could lose his heart.

It’s a great novel, and I strongly recommend it. It’s hot, it’s interesting, and it gets to the heart of a lot of issues. At one point, the protagonist is describing an instance when she tried to convince a vanilla lover to experiment with her. For clarity, the protagonist is a heavy masochist. The book read:

I wanted him to hurt me. At first, he was horrified. He thought I hadn’t been enjoying our sex life at all. I told him no, it was fine. I just needed…more. … It hurt him, in a bad way that I absolutely hated. I couldn’t ask him to do that. I like pain, yes, but I want to enjoy it, and know that the man giving me that pain enjoys it too. If he’s not getting off on it, then I won’t either. My boyfriend hated it. He hated hurting me. I knew he was going to end up hating me too.

He delves into her need to suffer for him, and he struggles a lot with his sadism and a fear of losing control. She describes her love of pain so perfectly too:

I want you to hurt me like that again. I need it. When you take me to that dark, sharp place of pain, then that’s where I find myself. I’m free there, freed by the pain and the pleasure it brings.

I feel the same way. I don’t want to be hurt unless the person is getting off on it. I NEED my partner to get off on hurting me in order to relax.

I am craving pain like a crack-addict in withdrawal right now. I want the wicked gleam that promises evil things are coming my way. I want to revel in the darkness, to scream, struggle, and eventually surrender. I want to let the pain blossom inside me, curling through me and setting my nerves aflame. I want to feel the ache and bruises afterwards. I really want the tender caresses and brutal savage fucking too… Blerg.

 

 

Stress, Learning, and Cravings

First, work is nuts. I never realized quite how much of a perfectionist I am, at least in terms of meeting my own personal standards. My boss’ incompetence is just growing and growing. He tries to do certain things administratively that directly contradict what the boss above him says. He takes too long to finish projects and is very behind, which is hindering the progress of our report. Furthermore, since I can’t trust him to do things, I have to do a ton more than I should be doing, and I simply don’t have time to do it. There are very intense deadlines being set by upper management, and the agency we’re working with is stonewalling us and not providing data we’ve requested. All this on top of catch up from going overseas, people’s holiday absences (including my own), and normal life pressures. EEEEEEP.

Otherwise, everything is busy. Trying to see friends and do normal life things (bills, dr appointment, groceries, job/fellowship apps and loan payments) on top of work and going in/out of town is leaving me very little free time. I alter between wanting to curl up in a ball, be intensely dominated, and have the shit beaten out of me. See below listing on options for realigning the internal stress.

It’s funny though…I’m going through a kind of kink withdrawal. Between going overseas for work for 2 weeks and the prep before/after that, and now leaving for a wedding, then leaving for thanksgiving, I won’t be able to attend a kink event until Rapture at the end of the month and I haven’t been to anything since Fetish ball. I’ve been experimenting with orgasm control/denial with someone new, but that’s a different type of torment and release.

On a relevant sidenote, teasing and denial has reiterated and taught me a few things:

  • One, when I’m incredibly aroused, I do indeed vocalize.
  • Two, when I’ve been teased for a few days, I can get aroused enough to take a dildo, which means YAY! sex is possible without the physical therapy my OBGYN recommended. Rock on.
  • Third, I have a bit of an oral fixation; sucking on things turns me on. Probably has something to do with my first kinky play partner’s “training”…but is also probably somehow related to:
  • Fourth, I literally get off on getting my partner off. When someone I like and am attracted to (important points, it’s not like every person I know getting off gets me off) is receiving pleasure, I physically react. They shudder, moan, get hard, and I shudder, moan, and get wet. Handy hardwiring, that. I realized this a good while ago, but the extent to which it holds true fascinates me.
  • Fifth, having been allowed to climax, I’m now missing the denial. I enjoyed the edge of arousal during the day. I hated, but also loved the torment of teasing without release.

But, back to the withdrawal and stress…Basically,  I’ve never been one to cry when I’m stressed. Working out and being productive does help a lot, but not quite enough. The frustration at work and everything makes me want pain to process it all. Options for processing/realigning the stress:

  • Warmth in blankets and hot cocoa while in a ball watching bad tv, basically hiding away from it all.
  • Drinking copious amounts of alcohol.
  • Finding my old roommate and recentering with her steady comfort and awesomeness. (Which hopefully happens tomorrow, so will hopefully improve my mental state)
  • Laughing hysterically with friends. Don’t worry, I’m not going to start spontaneously laughing hysterically alone.
  • Wrestling/grappling, or an excuse to fight really hard, use my energy, and still lose.
  • Bondage for similar reasons – I want to struggle, lose, then settle into helpless peacefulness.
  • Pain because it helps me release the pent up tension by creating tension of a different type, tension I can’t ignore and have to face but can then release.
  • Serving someone else in a very intense power exchange way, so that I don’t have to think or worry about anything. So much lack of control in a bad way from work/life, so it’s good to have an intentional, healthy lack of control in order to recenter and refocus.

Problem is, not really in a good place to get one of the latter options. I keep leaving town, so I can’t attend a kinky event to get someone to meet me up and help there. I don’t want to have one of my play partner folks help me out because it counteracts the control I’ve surrendered. And while I’m accepting enough of my need for pain to joke about it or talk about it with either a complete stranger (no risk) or a very trusted friend (no risk), I feel too exposed and raw bringing it up outside of those contexts. Basically, I still feel all dark and twisty for this way of coping, so I hate calling attention to it. So, stuck…annnnd stuck with this stress and mental frustration is not fun.

4/30

After a great weekend, my emo attitude from last week is almost entirely gone. Amazing what friends, dancing, and pain can do for a girl!

First off, I bought some lingerie a little over a week ago. Some of it was too big (perils of buying online and being curvy), but the stockings and garter set fit perfectly. This weekend was my first chance to wear them, and it was great. Somehow wearing thigh-high stockings with garters makes me feel incredibly alluring and sexy. It’s also a great reminder of femininity.

In general, going to this month’s Rapture event really amped up my mood. I was able to try a bunch of things for the first time, I met some new people, and I got to hang out with some really good friends. Since I live across the city, I don’t see these folks as much as I’d like. I forgot how much I enjoy their company. I really appreciate being able to be myself without any judgement. One benefit of moving this month will be being closer to these folks, enabling us to hang out more.

Now, for the things I tried. I actually tied someone else up all by myself! I did a chest harness and hogtied my friend, and then her boyfriend stepped in and did knife play on her. I was able to get it all to stay and she couldn’t get out, which was awesome. It was kind of strange because when I finished I realized there were a bunch of people watching me. I didn’t ever think I’d enjoy being the one doing the tying, but I did. I think it was primarily because I could joke with my friend, and try out the things I wish I could have done to me.

That experience is one more step along my journey of admitting my internal switchy-ness. I was thinking about this on my commute this morning, and how I enjoy teasing people and messing with them a bit. I like turning the tables every now and then (or trying to). For rope, I just love everything about it, and it’s fun.

Another new thing for me was experimenting a bit deeper with breath play. It still frightens me, and the only reason I was willing to go there was because this person is truly an expert. Breath play doesn’t have to involve smothering or being choked out, but can include general moderation of the way in which you breath. Really, it was mainly a mindfuck – he wasn’t cutting off my air, but his hand around my throat made me think he was so I would stop breathing. It intensified the other sensations we were experimenting with, and I surprised myself by enjoying it.

I also worked up the nerve to try needle play. This one was a biggie for me. It was kind of funny, I was watching my friend do a pretty intense needle play scene from a distance, and someone caught my expressions. (I have a horrible poker face.) Apparently, I looked confused and somewhat upset by the scene. I admitted that needles squick me out – something about going in and out of the skin just freaks me out. Logically, I knew it probably didn’t hurt that badly, but still. Despite my fear and uncertainty, I really like to try things before I judge them, and this person offered to let me try it. Crazy enough, I actually enjoyed it. On my arm, I didn’t even really feel the needle at all. Same on my thigh. On my back, however, it hurt quite a bit more. I don’t know what it is, but that type of pain immediately sent me on an endorphin high, and I came pretty close to getting off on it (and there were just 3 needles). I should’ve suspected I’d like it, given my propensity for playing with thumbtacks. It’s not something I can do to myself because of the squicky factor, but I enjoyed doing it with someone else.

I was comparing needles to cutting in my mind, and trying to figure out how I feel about it. I’ve written before on the cutting scene I did and how it really messed with my mind. It’s basically too edgy for me. Needles, though, while still being edgier (and considered more extreme by many BDSM players), are far less dangerous. As long as you avoid veins, your many layers of skin can pretty much handle being pricked without much danger. If you use small needles, than there’s not a lot of blood, few (if any) lasting marks, and yet you can still get endorphins and pain/release. Anyhow, I definitely surprised the hell out of myself for enjoying it.

Lastly, I also did some rough body play for the first time. This has actually left some marks, which rarely happens, so that’s kind of interesting. I had a lot of fun with it, particularly because it involves a lot more physical contact, intimacy, and reinforces the physical overpowerment that I enjoy.

Overall, the evening revisited my exploration of pain quite a bit. It was a lot of fun, and generally helped me release some of my frustration from school and life. I’m still not comfortable with masochism, especially as I can enjoy and tolerate relatively heavy amounts of pain, but I’m trying to just roll with it. I rationalize things because I enjoy them, they’re consensual, and they don’t cause lasting harm. Despite that, my discomfort comes from the associations with self-harm and that it really doesn’t scream “I’m a healthy, sane person” when you enjoy someone beating up on you or jabbing you with needles. In many ways I love being unique, but I’m not fully comfortable being downright edgy either.  Since I went a few months without any type of intense/edgy pain, I know it isn’t necessarily a need I have, but it is something I can enjoy quite a bit. That makes me feel a bit better about it, but I’m still not sure the role my masochism will (or should) have in future relationships.