Monday, April 30, 2007

Yes, My Lady: Domestic Discipline: a Lady's Choice

This past October 19th, I had the wonderful opportunity to meet some of My column enthusiasts when I taught a BDSM Workshop on Domestic-style Discipline. The Society of Janus (, the Bay Area's pansexual BDSM organization, sponsored this public event open to BDSM folks outside of Janus at the Fort Mason Center in San Francisco. Elated to learn from Me in the flesh, I honored the workshop participants with the knowledge and experience of My favorite type of SM play.

Domestic Discipline is a mutually consensual scene or living arrangement in which one partner assumes the role of authority and disciplinarian over the other partner. It is the kind of control exerted by a Traditional Authority Figure. Being controlled is what the bottom needs, and controlling is what the Top needs. The discipline involves all things domestic: roles, toys, clothing, terms, language, roleplay, scenario, and location. It is the classic image of home, school, kitchen, office, or bedroom. It's Mommy's wooden hairbrush or wooden spoon. It's Daddy's black belt. The beatings, the birch, the cane, the paddle, the lash, or strap. The key to Domestic Discipline is that the bottom is afraid to admit that they want the Top in control. A bottom seeking discipline would normally expect their behavior to be carefully controlled; that there will be regular opportunities for some form of physical punishment, even if mild, for infractions.

The tenants of discipline, punishment, responsibility, and consequence that we first learn from our parents comprise the core of Domestic Discipline. It is the first lessons that will form our desire as adults to experience the same emotions, spirit, and play. When I was an adolescent, My brother and I used to run around the plant room against My mother's wishes. The story is always the same, and eventually, one of us would knock a plant over, spilling black, rich soil onto My mother's white, fluffy carpet. Mother would hear the falling of the plant, of course, and slowly approach upon the scene. She would chant, "Fee-fi-fo-fum, I smell the blood of an Englishman." My brother and I would look at each other in great fear and anguish. We knew what was coming next. Mother would demand that we lower our panties, and then, she would make us hold that position for a minute, or two. She would then wail on our bottoms with a homemade wooden paddle, last name engraved, and all. Today, I crave for the exhilaration that My brother chasing Me brought. Nothing quite like it except for maybe a lover chasing us around the house. I yearn to be mischievous…to make a mistake, and to be held accountable. I desire to scare My bottom: to make Her feel the fear of the consequence is greater than the consequence itself. I need order, stability, and object constancy in My life. Domestic Discipline provides such direction.

I categorize Domestic Discipline into two types of play: Lifestyle and Scene. Both are unique and demanding of their own set of rules. In a Scene, there is a beginning, middle, and end. Players negotiate the limits of the scene, and respect safewords. There are agreed upon roles, and from there the Top usually controls and/or makes up the scenario. The bottom's only way to end the scene is with the safeword. However, the bottom has just as much power as the Top. When bottom consents, do trust it. Overall, the Top must trust her/himself, and have confidence. The Top must also trust that the bottom will use the safeword, if needed. The bottom must trust that the Top is in control, and will not lose it. To make the scene safe and sane, pay attention to your partner's reactions, cues, respect limits, earn trust by acting trustworthy, stop at the use of the safeword, and push one another when you can take it.

As for Lifestyle Domestic Discipline, it is a long-term commitment to a certain agreed-upon relationship that follows certain domestic-discipline tenants. The Top establishes rules, which both parties negotiate, and the bottom agrees to obey the rules. The key is that the bottom may verbally agree to obey the rules, but s/he may defy them. The bottom must break the rules in order to require punishment. Disobeying rules carries consequence, such as corporal punishment or loss of privileges. As the authority, the Top sets example by living an orderly life and following the rules. This lifestyle demands good behavior from both parties. Overall, the bottom desires order, discipline, and control, and seeks the Top to contain them and guide them through this process. The bottom feels worthy and loved by the attention, boundaries, and knowledge of what is expected. The Top feels loved and respected by the bottom who takes punishment well and begins to perform better due to the discipline. Both parties are pleased when they have accomplished something: something that seems to produce a new way of relating. The objective of this lifestyle -- and the appeal -- for many couples is a smoother running household where power roles are defined, boundaries clear, and harmony prevails.

Domestic Discipline tends to be more accessible than other types of BDSM play. Most players can simply use their imagination, theatrical skills, past knowledge, and emotions. With Domestic Discipline, one doesn't have to buy new and expensive fetish wear, toys, and equipment. One can simply use what is in the home. It is an equalizer: both players may feel equal when they come to the drawing board, especially when it comes to class privilege. Both players have only to offer themselves, a true test of self-worth, confidence, and trust.

Domestic Discipline can take you and your partner on a sadistic, mind-probing, emotional interrogation that you will not soon forget. It pushes that edge between SM and real life, releases endorphins, and can bring great atonement. Using the best techniques to push both Top and bottom, Domestic Discipline fosters tuning into your partner's energy and role-playing cues. Domestic Discipline is special because it expands the boundaries of both Top and bottom and integrates fantasy and reality in a safe, contained manner.

Yes, My Lady: Sex & Bondage Go Together Like Love & Marriage...?

My most vivid memories of childhood are when I was bound, unwillingly and nonconsensually: bound to an abusive family, a sexist, racist nation-state, and my own low self-worth. As an adult, I will struggle with the confinement of the institution of marriage and the capitalist production of love. I will feel bound by tradition and familial and societal pressure to wed. Struggle to rid these chains that bind is a common theme in my life, and that in the lives of many Dominant women. However, being placed in bondage will serve as the only method to a sexuality for me as a young adult. How is it years later that bondage will serve as the only form of play in which I feel totally safe?

Like love and marriage, "sex and bondage" is an exercise teeming with convoluted practices and messages. The media often portrays women who are tied down as a victim. If she is shown enjoying bondage, then the character is assumed some sort of freak. Children learn at a young age that you tie someone down so that you may do what you wish to them -- so that you may keep them. Yet, the images that strike me most are the ones of men being tied down by women. Movies like Basic Instinct depict a manic, dominant man who both seeks and fears being restrained by a woman. The face of Michael Douglas's character portrays a struggle with submission as Sharon Stone's character forcibly wraps the silk scarf around his wrists. His bodily movements and facial expressions show a man that does not want to be bound by this woman, but he does not verbally resist. What remains is the silent omission that screams consent. Pure passivity.

Only bondage produces and maintains this type of passivity. By passivity, I do not mean submission. Submission signifies that you have power, which you choose to resign to another. By passivity, I mean you have no will to hand over to the Top. By passivity, I mean that you do not relinquish power. Rather, you act as if you have no power. As the rope, leather, and chains begin to sink into your skin, you don't care who enters you, when, or how.

For some novices of BDSM, bondage is the means to fact; it is the only way that some can submit. Being bound allows a certain freedom to act as if one cannot escape, so one must submit. Bondage allows for a certain insidious negation of responsibility and blatant consent. The bottom can fool her/himself into accepting submission and the dominance of the Top. (The Top is only getting away with this because I am bound...) The bottom can enforce a private, internal illusion that the Top is making them do this. The bondage maintains the illusion and allows the bottom to act out as if they do not truly want what the Tops gives, but is forced to accept. Without the bondage, the bottom wouldn't be able to submit. Thus, for some novices, bondage is the only means to playing...a sort of forced submission.

For many novices of sex, let alone BDSM, we learn to feel sex as a dirty, bad thing. We cannot proudly covet or request sex. It usually requires someone else to "force" us to enjoy sex, to force us to become someone else for a little while, which allows a bound freedom. To inhibit the inhibited frees. This is where bondage enters. Bondage acts as a mediator between an abjected sense of self and sex; that is to say, it allows a person to let go of control over sex, the situation, fluids, etc., just enough to have sex. As My submissive friend Kaylynne says, "I couldn't let go enough to have sex, or to act that way [submissively], unless I was bound -- I needed bondage."

Bondage is a means to receive domination, attention, and/or sex. Many novices see bondage as a form of domination. They believe that they must be bound to be truly dominated. Many novices go through the ropes, actually not enjoying bondage, in order to get what they truly want from the Top: dominance. They learn to associate the two. Bondage and dominance are not the same thing. You can bind a body, but not the spirit. A dominant person will not suddenly submit simply because s/he is placed in bondage. Similarly, a submissive person can submit willingly without a single piece of rope restraining them. It usually takes a novice some time to learn that they need not be placed in bondage in order to be dominated. Similarly, many novice Tops believe they must bind someone in order to control them. How untrue!

As for experienced and cultivated players, many of us no longer mix sex and bondage. Why, you might ask? Well, it's something that only novices do seem to do; moreover, it's something that I no longer need to do. Bondage with sex, or sex with bondage was often our first act of SM. You tie your lover up and have sex. However, time passes, we gain experiences and try many different forms of SM, and suddenly, one finds her/himself not interested in traditional sex anymore. Bondage has replaced sex. Moreover, bondage becomes a new form of sex. One that is just as intimate, trust producing, and sexy as 69, intercourse, or any other form of "vanilla" sex.

Bondage takes on a life of its own. One suddenly begins to crave it like when one hasn't masturbated for a long time. The body aches for it. The loins desired to be pushed, knotted, and covered with delicate, yet strong, beautiful fabric. One longs for the feel of the ropes sliding up and down the body. 'Til finally, nothing is left but rope, leather, chains and bones. Like a good fuck, you continue to feel where the ropes once laid. Sex and bondage. Love and marriage. You can have one without the other.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Yes, My Lady: The Romanticism of D/s

My sexuality is sado-masochist. I am a dominant sadist to be precise.

I am also a hopeless romantic.

Many may find this contradictory. I find it perfectly natural. Good D/s, or Dominant & submissive relationships are inherently romantic in nature.

[As I write these words, My servant boy Diane is kneeling on the floor next to Me, presenting Me a plate of gourmet food that she has prepared. Diane is My full time submissive and I am, at all times, her Queen. Our relationship is deeply steeped in leather romance. It pleases Me to see Diane's devotion to Me. There is also a submissive's satisfaction in a job well done. Do these simple acts of cooking and presenting her gift of food to Me while kneeling, acts of devotion and affection, strengthen our relationship? Most certainly.]

The fundamental key to understanding a healthy D/s relationship is the mindful and formalized elements of the interactions that people would otherwise pass thoughtlessly through in non-D/s relationships. First, the union is entered into and begun consciously with the explicit consent of both parties. There is a clearly delineated and agreed upon beginning and end. This may take the form of a formal collaring ceremony, exchange of written vows called a 'contract,' or verbal acknowledgement of each of their position to the other.

Such a formalized acknowledgement of the formation of a relationship is a declaration of a beginning of a adventure, that both have some idealized sense of the experience they are about to enter. The ultimate outcome of this adventure is the validation and fulfillment of a desire unchecked.

As part of the conscious entry into the joint journey, boundaries, and terms are also agreed upon. This formalizes the scope of the relationship. Where some D/s relationships can fail, causing heartache, is when shift in personal needs and the need for renegotiations of boundaries are not recognized or acted upon. When regular emotional maintenance is built into the structure of the relationship, D/s relationships can last for years.

The D/s relationship is entered into because there is desire. Desire begets desire, fueling the passion of each for the other. This desire is not the simple sexual craving or that of physical attraction. There is certainly fondness and affection -- even love. However, it is also more than that. It is a desire to know this particular person in an intimate way that is so much deeper in the heart than simple physical intimacy. A desire on the submissive's part based in hope that a special trust can be built where loss of Ego State and peaceful surrender may be possible. The Dominant desires a singular loyalty and emotional safety where they are free to explore their hidden erotic hungers.

My boy Diane, who practices the tango, reminds Me that D/s is much like dancing. Both individuals, well practiced in the art, know the fundamental steps and the elements that compose the dance. They approach each other in a formal formation, stop to recognize each other, and begin the dance. One must be an exceptional lead, the other, an elegant follower. The lead's skill is pointless with out the presence and grace of the follower. Although the components of the dance and even the music may be known, each dance is different as the lead step into the follower's step, the follower respond in yet another different step. What a beautiful dance is thus created! A unique dance imbued with the energy and intent is much like hot D/s play...

Good D/s relationships also manifest signs of honor, loyalty, bravery, courtesy, and devotion. It is obvious that there is an expectation for the submissive to be loyal, courteous, and devoted to her Dominant. The relationship is also based upon the loyalty, courtesy, and devotion of the Dominant for the submissive. The Dominant must give the submissive due respect, which means fundamental courtesy of a human being. She must be loyal to the relationship and committed to the care and protection of Her bottom. This is a form of devotion to the union. It is also vital that the Dominant honors the gift of surrender from the submissive. A submissive of quality would not be so foolish as to trust, much less surrender to a so-called 'dominant' who would not respect and honor their gift. Both parties must honor the boundaries and vulnerabilities of the other. D/s has built into it a sense of mutual protectiveness and trust that flows both directions. D/s relationship is built upon respect and trust.

For many practitioners, D/s relationship's formalized nature also brings a sense of domestic peace by consciously creating a space of order in a world filled with chaos and unpredictability. There is, for many, comfort in knowing exactly what their role in the relationship is and having the power to define it with awareness. In many non-D/s relationships, the roles of dominant and submissive parties exist, but they are not acknowledged at a conscious level or discussed as such. In such an environment where the roles become a set of default behavior, there is a great potential for quiet resentment and sense of dissatisfaction to build up.

My submissive Diane reminds Me that there is something more to the richness of the D/s experience. The boy is quite right. However, there is a problem. How do I explain the emotional richness and pleasure in meaningful words to those who have never experienced it? How do you describe the pleasure of biting into a freshly picked, sun ripened luscious peach to someone who has only had hot house fruits from a chain-grocery store? This quality of a special love is precisely what poets have been trying to put in words from airy nothings for thousands of years. Thus, after attempting to write upon the romantic nature of the form of affection I practice called Dominance and submission, I am still want for words, time, and space to convey the subtler nuances that I celebrate each day.

Yes, My Lady: Fantasies for the Holidays!

My inspiration for this article did not come to Me in a flash. Instead, the idea of discussing the most popular kinky fantasies slowly dawned on Me as I was searching through piles of readers' and clients' correspondence. Sifting through the discreet letters, I began noticing similarities in the SM, bondage & discipline, fetishist, and role-play activities that were being described to Me. Furthermore, an overwhelming amount of readers requested ideas for scenes that they could spring on their lovers during the holidays. What better insight than describe the most popular fantasies that I have come to know through My correspondence and career as a Professional Dominant.

The Pain Game

This popular kink is as much a test of one's masochistic endurance as it is a proper fantasy. It involves pure, unadulterated SM. Basically, the masochist is challenging him/herself and his/her Mistress to a contest of wills. How much can the bottom take? Moreover, will the Top get tired before the bottom is beaten to death?! This blatantly physical, yet psychological trial tests thresholds. Can the bottom top his/her own pain in a mind-over-matter battle in order to endure what the Mistress dispenses? Moreover, will the Sadist make Her slave reach his/her safeword before She is threw? This type of scene can take both Top and bottom to lofty heights. It is an intriguing and sexually exciting tableau where the most important ingredient remains the SM balance between Mistress and slave. A cruel Sadist must be matched with a heavy masochist...or there will not be any game at all.

Forced Feminization

This scene works well with submissive men and butch women. The stripped bottom is ordered to dress in panties, garter belt, stockings, corset, and high heels. The bottom is humiliated, but excited at the same time. If the bottom-turned-sissy slut argues or resists, s/he will be disciplined; or worse, the Mistress will threaten to reveal the slut's sissy secret to other people! The bottom is literally "forced" to prance around the Top's playroom. This is the classic scenario known as forced feminization. This fantasy is as much about cross-dressing as it is about compliance and embarrassment. It is as much about wearing frilly panties and it is about being ordered to wear frilly panties. Remember to take pictures this holiday season. They make for great blackmail!


Total enclosure. This elaborate restriction fantasy involves expensive, complex paraphernalia such as strapped body bags and isolation hoods, most commonly made of latex or leather. It is primarily about three things: immobilizing bondage, sensory deprivation, and an euphoric sense of meditation. The bottom is completely out of control. Trust is a necessity. The bottom cannot move. The bottom cannot feel anything except the restrictive material that encircles her/him. The bottom cannot see, may not be able to hear or breathe freely. The Top is in total control. Only the womb offers such a similar state.

Public Humiliation

Imagine being verbally berated and slapped across the face by an aggressive, high-heeled bitch, while strangers watch and whisper. If the suggestion of this scenario makes your pulse quicken and the flush of embarrassment turns you on, then you are most likely one of the many submissives who enjoys public humiliation. Just remember not to get arrested for indecent exposure or causing a public nuisance! Moreover, make sure to get the consent of all parties involved, as non-consensual bystanders do not make for popular, safe, sane scenes.

The Personal Slave

The personal service fantasy usually involves domestic duties, running errands, making equipment, and hopefully, caring for the Mistress and Her personal items. Of course, most bottoms do not hope that "all work and no play" is not part of the equation. If your bottom desires to be your personal slave, go ahead and try it by establishing a short-term contract. Win or lose, at least you will not have to cook the holiday meal or clean the dishes!

Tease & Denial

This is the most popular fantasy among those who are apprehensive about SM: "Yes, please, tie me up and tease me mercilessly. But, just don't hurt me!" A little rope restraint, one or two tepid smacks on the fanny, and a stern talking-to will work for any holiday fantasy.

Golden Showers

Nothing can be more rewarding or degrading (depending on how you look at it) than ingesting your Top's piss as a holiday present. You will have to determine what your emotional, visceral response is to this type of play. I know that My bottom will be drinking urine rather than eggnog this holiday season!

Foot Worship

Some have a fetishistic need for sexual intimacy with a Mistress's feet or footwear. The look, the smell, the feel, and the taste all combine to overwhelm the admirer. Witness the worship of your feet: I guarantee a holiday scene sure to please.

Domestic Discipline

Your bottom has been very naughty. The infraction can be almost anything. S/he knows that if you discover her/his indiscretion, s/he will be punished; so, of course, it is essential that you catch her/him! The resulting discipline makes for one of the purest, most popular SM holiday play. The "rewards" for being bad are exactly what Santa and submissive want!

Dildo Training

It's quite simple. You, the Top, strap a menacing black silicon "cock" to your pelvis and swagger about the house teasing your bottom with it. Make sure to wear a Santa-hat while you are at it! Many bottoms enjoy being taken. Most Tops enjoy taking. This holiday, find out if Santa baby is a squealing little ass-slut!

Now, don't be alarmed if your favorite fantasy is not discussed here. No one sexual inspiration is better or worse than any other is. In addition, keep in mind that what preceded itemizes general categories of kink rather than specific fantasies. There are hundreds of unique twists to each topic, making for more delightful holiday deviance! Just keep in mind that safety, sanity, and consensuality are important ingredients to healthy, rewarding fantasy...and happy holidays!