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BDSM beyond the bedroom

I've been exploring BDSM ever since my kinkiness came out of the shadow and laid me flat. I watched movies, read, experimented with myself, and sought out play partners. I've been having the best sex of my life! And I've felt the power of BDSM rippling through my life more generally in delightful and intriguing ways.


The world of BDSM is huge. The letters can stand for more than one word, making even the acronym kinky! What I want to focus on today is DS, or more apropos D/s, meaning Dominance and submission, consensual power play. I've written about the spiritual allure of this. There is also a real physical allure. I like to feel small and physically overpowered. And I like to feel claimed, aggressively, like an animal.



What I want to write about today though is the draw of feeling watched over. The reason one can even settle into a power dynamic and gather its pleasure is because there is a deep trust between the players. The submissive believes their Dominant will take good care of them. Every human wants this from time to time: to let someone else manage their well-being. It is undoubtedly regressive. And so is falling love! We project our ideal parent onto our lovers, hoping to play out our redemptive fantasy, to finally get the love, recognition, praise, etc. we deserved. At least kinksters admit what we're doing! Even better when it is a project undertaken consciously, as a form of healing as well as play.


In my limited experience I see a lot of kinks coming from childhood trauma. I received very little attention growing up, and didn't feel seen or celebrated, so I have a kink for praise. That is perhaps an overly-reductionist example, but it often holds that we are trying to redo some part of our experience. In BDSM, that becomes fun, and hopefully conscious. I tell my lover I love to be praised and he offers that to me while I melt, doing whatever he asks. I get a feeling I always missed (plus the erotic charge of it), and he gets my submission. Through my inner tracking I've met a part who wants to "get credit" for everything I do. This part is starving for attention and appreciation.


Another kink of mine is around discipline, which I wasn't watched well enough to receive. Without healthy discipline from my parents I developed a wicked inner critic, who drove me -- often ignoring my body's signals to slow down -- to qualify myself for love. So, as an adult I've found myself empty handed when it comes to appropriate ambition, unable to embody internally a sense of discipline that serves my greater good.


Over the past several months I've worked with my partner, my Daddy, to put those kinks into service of life-enhancing commitments, expanding their play outside the bedroom.


Last year, I started working out, here and there. This was very new. People had been telling me for years that working out would help my sleep, yada yada. It wasn't until I joined Jaguar and read Kimberley Ann Johnson's book that I connected the dots between my default nervous system state (freeze) and what types of activities would really support my healing (activating ones). I digress. It seemed right to make a habit out of it and I decided to do Mad Fit's December workout challenge....for Daddy.


Of course it was for me! But to play the game that it was for Daddy, and he did stand to benefit quite a bit from a fit little one, made it more fun, increased the stakes, and got me the praise I crave.


Whenever we include someone else in our process the power grows. Even if we just mention an intention to another person, we've fed our accountability. I think it was Charles Eisenstein who wrote about accountability meaning being seen. We are more likely to act how we promised, or in accordance with our values, if we have the sense that we are being watched over by people we respect and care about.


I definitely had the sense I was being watched over. *bites her lip*. Daddy had me come up with a mantra to say before every work out. This had the effect of bringing him in each day, and also sort of making ceremony of the challenge, as I acknowledged out loud my intention and its righteousness.

“May this workout strengthen and sculpt my body, for my Sir’s enjoyment, and for my own. I am committed to completing this challenge to show my obedience and to honor my will.”

He also required me to message him every day once I'd completed my workout, sometimes accompanied by a sweaty photo in my sports bra or a voice memo of me panting. "I suffered bad for you today," I'd whimper, wanting. I felt his pride in me grow. The deeper I went, the more committed and submissive I was to him, and the more he praised me.


With Daddy on the line, I pushed through the days that I would have just skipped had no one been looking. In the process, I learned a healthier balance between discipline and listening to my body. In the past I'd take cues of tiredness or not being able to focus as my body saying "no". I have an ethic against controlling or forcing my body. I want to attend to it well. Which is a wonderful idea except that I also want to devote myself to my life, my work, my goals. I want to show up, come what may. Though as I mentioned, my inner driver/inner critic can blow that way out of proportion, driving me at the expense of things like feeding myself well, or getting enough sleep. Learning to better navigate that tension was such a gift of the challenge.


Daddy and I have continued to have fun with this strand of our dynamic. When I began physical therapy and was given exercises to do at home, I asked for his help. I developed another mantra and a system for reporting to him. I haven't been as steadfast with these, so I've endured some punishment, though who can object to a solid spanking?


I’m committed to tending my feminine core, and to listening to and taking care of my body, to enhance my health and pleasure...and to make me a better fuck toy for Daddy.

While decidedly less fun, I've also played with this dynamic intrapsychically. When I was trying to establish a good bedtime routine after a year of horrible insomnia, I'd invoke my inner Daddy, speaking lovingly, but firmly, and laying down a limit. Or when I got really wrapped up in the man I fell in love with, my inner Daddy would pipe up and declare, "You belong to me. I am the one who is here for you and taking care of you. You are mine." If I still breached healthy boundaries, like stalking him online, my inner Daddy would punish me in an erotically delicious way.


Making new habits can be hard....for Daddy ;)

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