Knowledge comes to you from many locations if you are open to it. I read a post quite a while back from a gentleman (and I use that word quite purposefully) in Zuid-Holland, Netherlands, an area of the world with which I have no familiarity. But his writing echoed much of my own, and I asked if I might quote him here. After a short conversation, he agreed, and I, with great care and consideration, totally forgot about it. (Sigh)
With a short note this morning reminding me of our conversation, I delved in again to additional posts of his which only confirmed my admiration of his understanding of this magical relationship we call the lifestyle. His name is Guus , and as I will make no attempt at the proper pronunciation, I will use his screen name, Anjelen.
From “How Not to be a Dumbinant”
“While books, movies and other media, such as The Training of O, The Secretary and, oh, The Koka Shastra are wonderful sources of information, they aren’t the end-all – and simply watching or reading these, do not a Dominant make.” As I have told many a new Dominant or submissive, media descriptions of BDSM behavior is a very good way to discover what interests you, they are not a good description of the reality of a relationship. They are meant to titillate, not to inform.
“…in many, if not all impact play scenes, you will see a Dominant standing at arms length from their subject. yes – this makes for great visuals; the body of the submissive is exposed and squirming, the flogger will stretch to it’s full length and thus leave the most visible marks…” BDSM porn is wonderfully entertaining. Yes, there are cogent arguments against porn and its inherent treatment of women in general, but the argument here is about what it doesn’t include, the close touch, the tight intensity that happens in skin to skin contact, the whispered suggestions, the emotional bonding.
“…before he moved on to see about entertaining his other guests, [he] said the most remarkable thing. ‘I love how close you two are, and the energy you exchange.’ This is probably one of the greatest compliments I’ve had in a long, long time…” Yes, in my experience, this IS the purpose of play, the exchange of energy, the connection between two or more individuals, whether it be through pain, submission, or humiliation. Unfortunately, it is often missing, certainly in porn, and often in club scenes, and most unfortunately in relationships.
“People skills are important. Not simply controlling another – but knowing what goes through another’s mind, reading their body language, listening to the sounds they make, the speed of their breath, watching the movement of their muscle – taking every cue possible to find out how they feel and acting on this in a way that makes the ongoing scene more enjoyable for the both of you …” We hear much about learning to read a submissive. Often it is taught to us as a way to make sure no mistakes are made, that limits are adhered to. But it is far more than that. It is the way to maintain the connection, to read and absorb the energy, the exchange. Observe, be in tune with those with whom you play. The energy is there, watch for it, touch it, take it in, add to it and freely give it back.
“What is your submissive going to feel if they are constantly told they are worthless, scum of the earth, and not worth licking the ground you walk on? While it may be hot to you to degrade your submissive, and [may be – my edit] hot for the submissive to feel degraded, constant degradation will have an adverse effect – over time, your submissive will come to feel ungratified, taken for granted, and unappreciated.” While I certainly find some types of humiliation play quite hot, this concern is one that is highly important to me. Someone who willingly gives me authority to play with their mind and body is of overwhelming value. My seeing and appreciating that value should be conveyed to them constantly. That is why I try to do humiliation play within strict parameters, usually enveloped by elements of protocol. Within that scene I am free to be strongly verbally abusive and demand negotiated humiliating actions, but once the scene is clearly stated to be over, then is the cuddle time for strong affirmations of regard, value, and pleasure. For that is the relationship to maintain, not the humiliation.
“Certainly, a submissive should aim to serve and pleasure you – and here is the kicker – just as you should aim to serve their needs and pleasure. Treasure your submissive – after all, without them you are just a bully with a perverted mind.” Enough said. This is vitally important.
Anjelen goes on to speak on Honor, being yourself, communication and most importantly in my mind, the equality of value between the people in the relationship, no matter how divergent the roles. I am severely tempted to continue the quotes from this gentleman, but then there would be no purpose to reading his words directly, something I would highly recommend.
His words will probably appear again in this blog. I know we will continue our dialog. I feel that wisdom should be passed on, even if it comes from a place I can not pronounce.