It’s probably time that I talked about that thing I’ve been avoiding for the last several months. Actually, when I start to think about it, it may even be years…
It’s honestly a bit difficult to pin down when my thoughts about things started changing and it may even be that my thoughts were changing on a subconscious level waaaay before I even knew what was going on. Anyway, I guess it doesn’t really matter when it started, but the big reveal is that I’m not interested in this slavery thing anymore.
On some levels I feel like I gave it really good go before calling it quits. We were doing the slavery thing for years and I was lucky to have been able to experience quite a large range of activities, so in terms of ‘bucket-listing’, I’m pretty satisfied with what I achieved.
But on other levels, and specifically those that speak to the completionist in me, I’m annoyed/sad that I didn’t reach that place of ‘end’. Now, I’m not even sure what the ‘end’ of slavery is, but I’d always imagined that there was some place of ‘fulfilment’ or some other zen bullshit like that, because it’s always sold as a ‘lifestyle’ that almost borders on a religion and if it’s not fulfilling your wildest dreams, then somehow you’re not doing it right.
If you’ve been reading me for any length of time, you’ll know that I’m very goal-focussed and when I make my mind up to go after or achieve something, you can be pretty damn sure I’m going to get it. That’s actually how I gauge whether I really want something – if I do, I’m going to make it happen at any cost, but if I’m not 100% invested, I’m going to procrastinate and make a half-assed effort.
In the beginning I was 110% invested in slavery. I left my husband, a country I loved and a life that I had built up over ten years to be with a man who said he could make me a slave. When that didn’t work out as planned, I was still 100% invested and not ready to give up the dream so I packed up my bags and moved to the other side of Australia to be with another man who said he could make me a slave.
I would give M full marks and a big gold star for his efforts at making me into a slave. I mean, the piercings, the tattoo, the collar, the sleeping chained to the bed, the mystery shoppers, the play parties….the list goes on. Really, you can’t say he didn’t put 100% into doing his job. I would imagine there are people just coming into the scene who would be pretty impressed with what we managed to do in those 10+ years.
Because, let’s face it, like everything else in this world, it’s a fucking competition.
And especially now, it’s all about getting the best photo or the best video and proving that you’re tougher/more flexible/edgier than anyone else. It’s about having your K&P moment or your “you won’t believe what we did!” story. As much as we’d all like to think that we’re on a personal journey, 99% of the time, we only get satisfaction in the approval we get from others.
In hindsight, I’ve only ever been happy with the things that I’ve managed to do by myself. I’m not really a fan of the group effort or the team play, I purposely choose to do things where it’s up to me and only me. It’s a way of condensing the personal sense of achievement. I move countries alone. I travel alone. I pilgrimage alone. I run marathons alone. I study alone. I win prizes alone. Me, myself and I are a good team.
The problem with slavery is it’s inherently a two person activity. You are relying on someone else to make a scene, someone else to tie you up, it’s about making someone else happy and by extension, making yourself happy and getting a sense of achievement.
But as I said, there’s no end. No, “Well done, you’ve finished all 150 levels of slavery! Here is your certificate.” It just keeps going and at some point, you kind of ask, “What exactly am I doing this for?”
When I first get into a relationship, I try and be perfect. I’m the kind of person who would wake up and fix my face and hair before the other person woke up so I wouldn’t look like crap. I’d be all up in shaving this that and the other and I clean my place like a maniac before anyone comes over so they don’t see my sloth. From a bdsm perspective, I was up for anything, anytime. You want to invite some random stranger around to fuck me? Sure! You want me to wear thigh-high stiletto-heeled boots and a butt-plug in public? Sure!
But over time I start relaxing. I let down my perfect walls brick by brick. I start letting people see me without make-up, in stained home clothes. Then I start talking about farts and bowel movements. And finally I start to expect that just me, the real me, without needing to do anything, wear anything or say anything should be enough. And the question, “What am I doing this for?” raises its head again. If the answer is, ‘Because my master wants me to!’ it’s natural to start thinking that what you have to wear and what you have to do are more important than the person underneath the trappings – that person being you.
I’ve always had a mediocre sex drive and bdsm has never really been about the sex for me. While I watch porn like every other woman and my porn of choice still tends to be bdsm-related, I’ve never expected bdsm activities with another person to take me to flights of orgasm fantasy. I enjoy the fantasy just as others do, and I understand that by wearing or doing certain things, it brings the fantasy to life for some people, but at the moment, the thought of me actually doing any bdsm-related activities, just feels akin to a cold shower.
I try to think about what I used to feel like – how I’d get excited about being used or having tasks to do or even how wearing a collar seemed like the most wonderful thing in the world – but I can’t even wrap my mind around how any of those things could even have felt attractive to me.
I like having a role and being useful. I like routine and having control. I like being rewarded for doing a good job and I like to do the best that I can do. Those feelings haven’t changed because they are at the core of my being, but all the bdsm stuff feels like it was a shell stuck on to the outside, an extra layer that I put on like a coat made of bubble wrap.
I can’t say that I’ve ‘moved on’ from bdsm because I’m stronger in myself and no longer need the outside cushion. I don’t actually feel any better in myself (and if anything, I’m becoming more introverted and anxious as I get older), I guess I’m just not looking at bdsm as something that can ‘fix’ me.
I don’t think that not having bdsm in our relationship changes how I feel about M. Our relationship transcends what we do and I don’t love him because of what he does and does not do, I love him because of who he is.
Maybe I was looking at bdsm wrong for all those years. Maybe I was thinking it was something it never was. Whatever the answer, I’m folding up that chapter of my life and putting it up on a shelf. Maybe I’ll take it down again. Maybe I won’t.