How Shitty Romances Were Created

In the beginning god created starry-eyed dates and red carnations. Dating life was saccharine enough to make you puke and rose petals were over the surface of the deep. Adam and Eve were completely batshit crazy in love and god saw that it was good, but then he got sick to death of all their kissing so he said, “Let there be shitty romances.” And it was so. Adam forgot to replace the milk, and god was pleased for Eve ranted and cried, and that was way more interesting than their god-awful, constant cuddling. And there was evening, and there was morning – the first day.

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And god said, “Let there be burned and over-salted dinners to piss Eve off and make Adam feel like an idiot.” So god made higher settings on the stove and got Adam to put too much seasoning in the potatoes. God called the grotty dinners “not tasty enough to make up for the milk Adam forgot to buy yesterday so seriously, try harder.” And there was evening, and there was morning, and Adam wept – the second day.

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Subs Need Balls; Tops Need Teddy Bears

In vanilla life, I’m as submissive as a Siamese cat, so I like abrasive people who value truth over kindness. Authenticity is more admirable than a gazillion pleases and thank yous. I’m interested in what is real, not what’s dipped in syrupy bullshit.

I wasn’t taught to be well mannered, but to speak my mind and rule my own damn life. I learned diplomacy at the tender age of 30, so I’m a little better at dulling the jagged side of my tongue these days. That has added an entirely new stable of personality types to my friendship group, but my closest female friends are as submissive as Siamese cats, too.

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Don’t call us “alpha subs”, though. That term needs to be shoved into its own can of worms and thrown out to sea because all subs need balls to submit. We’re all Wonder Women. We just don’t want to carry the whip.

Submitting is like creating an iron casting. The melting point of metal is extreme. Trying to heat a lesser material at those temperatures will just end in a blackened crucible. Only something as strong as metal can melt at, and recuperate from, such intense heats, and only powerful people can “melt” into a submissive role without burning away.

While submission begins from a place of strength, the dominance I love best is rooted in vulnerability. Tops like that have a profound respect for the subs in our community. They’re sensitive enough to understand submission’s risks and the courage required to take them. I find a touch of arrogance sexy, but I stay away from it in dominants. Humility is precious in a top if you’re looking for safety.

D/s is yin and yang. Our contrary forces can only compliment each other if there’s a little of me in you and a little of you in me.

Why I Need Vanilla Sex

I like vanilla sex. You heard it here first. Just don’t tell all the Twue Masters and Super Masochists in the community lest I lose my credibility. In Vanilla Land, you spice up your sex life with a pair of furry lilac handcuffs, but for me, vanilla sex is a perfectly legitimate seasoning. Sadomasochism compels me, but sometimes, I want gentleness.

I also need a regular reminder that D/s is not the only framework for our relationship, and that equality can exist if I need it to. Call it a personal failing if you will, but I call it human. Total power exchange takes years to earn, but I trust too easily. I need to go over my vanilla foundation every so often to make sure it has no new fractures. I must hold back some of my independence until a man has proven he can handle my world as well as I can.

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When you paint, you begin with the background, otherwise the subject of the picture looks detached from the rest of the piece like a cutout you pasted onto the canvas. Layers are everything in painting. They add depth and keep your colours from looking muddy. All those principles apply to my brand of D/s. Vanilla sex is the background. I feel detached from the world and my relationship if we never spend egalitarian time together. I’m not just an object and a whore. I’m also an independent person. I need that part of me. I can’t have a healthy life without it.

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The Sinister Side of Kink

As a masochistic sub, I dip my toes in sinister things out of choice. I’m sure most kinksters do. That’s why we’re here—to discover the ghosts and grit of sexuality. I don’t need sex to be wrapped in a pink candyfloss cloud scattered with rose petals. I like pain and mud and filth. If I know you respect me, I don’t need you to behave as though you do all the time.

I do have to treat myself with a lot of respect if I’m to live safely with your sexual darkness, though. If I don’t, I will drown in it. I must stay in touch with how our dynamic affects me because no dominant can read all the secrets in my eyes. I’m the one with first-hand information about my mental health. I’m the one who knows the difference between pain and destruction. I know when my masochism is healthy and when I’m using it like heroin.

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We’re not fucking with teddy bears and flower gardens. We’re fucking with shadows, so there’s genuine potential for abuse from both sides of the slash. I need a dominant to treat the shadow side of his sexuality with as much respect as I treat mine. I need him to stay alert about his motives and compulsions because, as expressive as those eyes are, they don’t speak all that clearly.

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My Seriously Sophisticated Dating Strategy

I have as much talent for The Dating Game as I do for singing: in other words, you never want to be around when I’m in the shower. I can play hard to get as well as I can hit a note: read: not at all. I don’t give a damn about the compulsory three-day waiting period for calling a new man or the one month no fucking stage. I will not treat you mean to keep you keen or use any other rhymey technique to make you believe I’m a catch.

I subscribe to a more sophisticated technique. It’s called “Doing Shit Because I Want To.” Admittedly, its efficacy is not established, but if you crush on me because I manipulate you into thinking I’m unavailable, I’m guessing you’ll lose interest in me pretty fast anyway, so I’ll accept failure as an early warning system that you and I are not Capulets and Montagues.

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Why Newbie Ideas About BDSM Matter

During my first month in the BDSM community, much of what I saw petrified me. I developed a connection with a dom within two weeks of joining. We exchanged details about limits and expectations, and then he said something that went against my newbie concept of consent. I thought I’d officially met True BDSM, and it was nothing I could ever accept.

I spent some time dearly wishing I wasn’t a sub. I began to see my years in D/s relationships as lucky accidents that couldn’t happen in The Real BDSM Community. Fetlife had a sense of terrible weight, as though we were all stuck in an Orwell novel. Much of what I saw in the community looked more like manipulation and control than dominance. My past had been a healthy one, and submission had never disempowered me.

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I believe intuition is all the information you have scrambling around in your brain that is not quite consciously processed. What arrives as a gut feeling is based on experience and knowledge, not mysterious mental odysseys into the psychic ether. My intuition was telling me that fitting into what I was reading about kink would be an epic mistake, but they were experienced, and I was not, so I found it hard to believe I knew better.

Slowly, I began to connect with those who’ve become the core of my friends list through shared opinions about consent because…what? Others are into my idea of consent, too? Apparently.

I began to meet people in person. I gained confidence. I learned that my safe, sane D/s relationships had taught me something that was—duh–-sane and safe. Morality is a relatively universal belief system, even here on Fetlife. Being new to kink did not make me new to ethics, morals, or consent. I knew more than I believed I did. All I needed was a little trust in my own views.

When I first began writing, I went to classes for years waiting to hear what everyone else was hearing from our teacher: “You’ve found your voice.” Those words are a halo of glory to a new writer. Not hearing them for so long left me thinking that I might do a better job stopping writing entirely. After two years, I finally heard them. A party exploded in my head that didn’t stop for days.

The fact that I hadn’t found my voice for two years did not mean I shouldn’t write, though. Writing is what helped me to find my voice. The same is true of BDSM. I can hold tight to my opinions and intuition about consent even though I’m no expert. I can stick to my guns about what my gut tells me consent is about. If I do that and carry on learning, I will win the battle as best I can.

It’s been over two years since I joined Fetlife. I’ve done play parties and munches. I’ve played and I’ve negotiated. All I’ve learned in that time is that my interpretation of healthy consent in BDSM was on the mark right from the very beginning. Very little of what I believed then has changed. All I needed to learn was to trust and value myself.

About that Word “Sapiosexual”

I’m not attracted to people with below average intelligence. Does that make me a sapiosexual? No. I’m like most other people walking the planet. We all look for attractive traits, and intelligence is no difference than an hourglass figure or those sexy squinty eyes I love beyond all reason.

I’m relatively smart. Does that make me a sapiosexual? Definitely not.

I like to have relationships with people I can talk to for hours in dark bars. Does that make me a sapiosexual? No. It makes me normal.

My ex used to get as turned on when I spoke about books as he did when I wore The Red Dress. Was he a sapiosexual? Maybe.

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The word sapiosexual doesn’t show up in any major dictionaries. A random blogger named Torin claims to have invented the word in ’98. His definition goes: “I don’t care much about plumbing. I want an incisive, inquisitive, irreverent mind. I want someone for whom philosophical discussion is foreplay. I want someone who sometimes makes me go ouch due to their wit and evil sense of humour.”

Torin turned himself into an internet celebrity on the basis of a lie–The word ‘sapiosexual’ was hanging around long before he claims to have coined it.

Guess where?

In the kink community.

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