Tops Don’t Have to Play with You

March 2nd, 2015

Another two events coming up this weekend, and I just want to say this. Everyone knows that bottoms aren’t required to play with any top that asks, so why is it that some people get offended if the Top says no. Tops are Not required to play with you. Ever. It doesn’t matter if they are identifying as a service top at an event. Or if they are running an event. No one is required to play with you. And I say this as part of a group that runs events where we have sign up lists. Even then, a particular person on our crew still has the right to say no.

Now, at normal parties, this is generally not an issue. Sure some folks (top or bottom) complain that no one wants to play with them. But I see it more around suspension than any other type of play. Single subs come to a rope event expecting that someone Has to tie them up. Someone Has to suspend them. Simply because that’s what they want.

Let’s be serious here for a minute. Suspension is Dangerous! Serious injury and death Can occur. Minor injuries occur often – from rope burns to nerve pinching to muscle strains. And not just for the bottom. Lifting someone, no matter what their body type puts a strain on the lifter. Suspension takes a lot of trust, from both sides of the equation.

Suspension tops are not carnival rides, waiting around for just anyone who wants to play. They have to know the person they are tying, they have to trust the person they are tying, and they have to be mentally and physically prepared for each and every suspension they perform.

If you show up at an event without a partner, or without pre-negotiating, it is no one’s responsibility to give you what you want. It is on you to talk to people, to negotiate, and to accept yes or no as equally valid answers.



March 3rd, 2011

A year ago tomorrow, I wrote a post about needles. Last night I experience needle play for the first time. He put one needle in each breast, and he and hubby pulled them out at the same time. Here is my story.

We’re going to need you. Toy and I. Physically and mentally, we’re going to need your support tonight, to watch the demo portion of the needle class. A hard limit for us both, but we are curious and want to learn the information. I’ve been preparing for needle play for over a year. She barely wants to go.

He is prepared, has a plan, and restraints. The class gathers and he cuffs our wrists to each other, my right to Toy’s left. Then shackles me to a riser, left ankle to a handle on solid wood. There are blindfolds nearby, should watching become more than we can handle. I’m already halfway through a glass of water when the class begins.

Safety first. Always. Cleaning supplies, gloves, first aid. Listening intently, safety quiets the panic. Veins and nerves must be avoided – like rope, I tell myself. Health inspectors and the law, public versus private.

The doll gets naked as we learn about the needles. The types of needles, the parts, the shape. The bevel could be like an airplane, but maybe backwards – don’t ask, it’s origami gone horribly wrong.

We get demonstration of cleaning and preparing, the site and the sub. Remember to breathe, always remember to breathe, and remind them to breathe.

The movement of the needle described in detail, I cannot watch. I have to watch. Toy is hiding against me. Oh god, I can’t watch that. Different sizes, higher numbers are smaller – I have 25s, they’re apparently for babies. I’m okay with that.

He sits in front of us, I hold his shoulder, pet his hair, finding comfort in his solidity.

You can run line through the needles, leave it there and take the needles out. Oh god, now there’s blood. Toy and I hide against each other. He tells us to watch.

Ribbon now, connecting them all together into a pretty corset. Pretty from here, if you don’t look too close. And now he ties the center of the ribbons all together and tugs. We’re hiding again and he’s pulling our eyes back to the scene. Look at that blood. Didn’t someone tell me needle holes weren’t supposed to bleed. I swear someone said that once. Oh gods, why do they keep pulling on it?

He’s uncuffed my ankle at some point, I don’t remember when, and cuffed it to another girl who is enjoying the show, though she arrived late. Class is over on time and now it’s time for folks to try it out.

He unshackles me, collars her and leaves us sit with the needleplay box I gave him last year. We curl up and chat with folk, the only part of the room not filled with needle tossing. Calming and relaxing, I warn her, he has plans. She just says no.

He gets an experienced bottom, tosses two in a pain button and calls us over. We watch him put in the next two. Double dipping pain button, and then she offers him a 14. Oh dear gods, look at that thing, it’s HUGE. I can hardly look at it, let alone watch it go in her, under the other two. Dear gods it’s huge. There is a screaming contest and then a quiet contest. Then he cleans her up.

Our turn. Toy shakes her head. But just one? If you do one, Toy, she’ll have to do two. Are you okay with that? I’ve already agreed to a couple, sure. Okay. One for Toy, two for me. We hop up on the table, hands still cuffed, fingers intertwining.

Where, Toy? Thigh, below the writing, above the knee. Help her breathe. I am terrified, we look at each other and I control the breath. Breathe in… Breathe out… Breathe in… Breathe out… and on and on. He puts hers in, double dipping through her thigh. She does well, cringing but not screaming. Feels like a fucking needle in her thigh. But she is fine and breathing.

Now me. Where? I don’t know. Scared, confused, not very fleshy. Hubby says breasts, so I take off my shirt and bra, one handed. He taps my chest. Here? No, lower, please. Aww… He offers hubby first kiss. I kiss hubby, near tears. He kisses me, too, then turns my head to Toy. Breathe in… Breathe out… she intones. I am freaking out more than she did. Choking breaths. Breathe in… Breathe out… Breathe in… Breathe out… One needle in, I barely felt it. Breathe in… Breathe out… The second one he does less deep and I squeal. Breathe in… Breathe out… and squeal again… Breathe in… Breathe out… Two needles in. One in each breast. I snap my head back to him, he is grinning and happy and bouncy as he has been since the first needle that night. I’m breathing too hard. Slow down. My hands are numb. That’s okay, don’t breathe so hard. Breathe in… Breathe out… Kisses again. You know that if you went deeper on that second one, it wouldn’t have hurt her so much, hubby notes. Yes, he says, I wanted it to hurt.

So, your hubby gets two as well? No. Speak up? Two more? No more. I heard One more, speak up. No more. Please, no more right now. So, I can leave those in for a while? Light headed. Breathe, don’t hyperventilate. My arms are numb from the elbow down. Okay so should I take them out one at a time? Or hubby and I both take one at the same time. Yes, that, both. On three. One, two, three. I squeal again. Another kiss. Thank you. Toy’s comes out, too, after we convince her that out hurts less.

We hold each other for a bit on the table, she starts to drop and we move to the bed. Snuggles, all three of us curled up together. Warm, happy, crazy. We did needles tonight. First time ever. OMG, we did needles. He strokes and pinches and pets. Comfort, love and quiet.

Head hurts, ears are leaking, but oh so incredibly happy. We made his week. He made mine. Hubby even helped. Will I offer it again? As punishment? Yes, I can see offering it again. It made him so happy and bouncy. I like playing with fear, and offering limits as atonement.

Dear gods, I had needles in my breasts last night. Wow. Still buzzing.


Complete Shibari: Land and Sky

May 6th, 2010

My mentor recently ordered Complete Shibari Land and Complete Shibari Sky by Douglas Kent. After looking at them, let me just say they are gorgeous. Full of clear color photographs of knots, ties, suspensions and beautiful art. He lets the photos and simple icons take the place of lengthy instructions, including words only when necessary. He starts each book with sensible safety information, as well as a photographic index. He goes into the physics of suspension and lifting. He writes in a clear and approachable manner, and takes time to point out that not every bottom is healthy, fit or flexible enough to accomplish all the things in the book, especially some of the artistic photographs. He also talks about how important it is to understand the concepts, not just memorize the patterns. They are both incredible books, and are clear, concise and very informative.

We have been working on learning the knots and the ties he shows. Experimenting with the designs, combining them and seeing what works for us. Some are very different ties than we usually do. Focusing on aesthetics rather than on comfort. We work to find balance and make them fit to my body and his vision. I have enjoyed working with them, and look forward to his third book, as well.

I recommend them to anyone with an interest in rope, and especially to anyone who loves shibari.



Let’s Talk About Sex, Baby…

April 8th, 2010

Sex was never discussed in my house growing up. Mom never had “the talk” with me, I had it at school from a silly video. It was mentioned by her twice in my life. Once, when a friend of hers had been embarrassed when her 8 year old daughter told her not to have sex if she didn’t want more kids and described the act very poorly because I had misinformed her, being only 9 and just previous to the talk at school when she had asked Me about it. So Mom asked if I knew how it really worked now, and I said yes and that was that. The second time was when we were out buying flowers for my wedding and she wanted to know if I had any questions and to tell me the first time might not be great. I rolled my eyes and said Mom… in that tone most of us perfect as teenagers. My Dad never discussed sex when I was growing up, though as he’s gotten older he’s discussed a lack of sex due to the ineffectualness of Viagra… thanks, Dad.

I only dated one boy for one weekend in High School, and that was only a couple phone conversations, so I’d never even been kissed before I got to college. My first three boyfriends freshman year took me from kissing through oral sex at a not-too-fast pace. It was not until the summer after my sophomore year that I had sex for the first time. Subsequent first visit to OB/GYN for birth control was a godsend as far as period control. I am now nearing 30 and have had a total of 8 sexual partners, 9 if you count 3 seconds of penetration as a sexual partner, I generally don’t. Only 4 of which were/are continuous sexual relationships. I had a few STD tests a couple years ago at the request of a life insurance company and in the past couple weeks, my new doc ran a full panel for me, results still pending, but I’m not expecting any surprises. (That’s why they’re called surprises, eh?)

So that background is all well and good, but what am I really on about? One of my hard limits is sex in public. Public generally being defined as more than two other people(other than the one I’m having sex with) being present. I blush when talking about sex, avoid using sexual terms in public and even in private sometimes. I’ll swear like a sailor, but ask me to say cock or admit I’m thinking about oral and I’m suddenly shy and flustered. Sex, to me, is a private thing, but even more than that, it’s something I find it difficult to be forward about.

One, on the private matter of sex. It is a personal thing, a private thing. Sex, to me, is an expression of intimacy shared between two people, maybe three. It’s a special kind of energy and I don’t fancy the intrusion of other energy into the mix. The excitement of having sex somewhere inappropriate and public has its allure, but the thought of other people watching and the threat of being arrested most often kills it for me. That’s not to say I haven’t had sex in a public park at night, but only when those two factors have been reduced to almost nil.

He asked me to go without panties recently and it was a huge deal. Let my most private and intimate bits be exposed under my skirt? Proper girls just don’t do that(when the hell did I become proper again?). What if someone sees? What if someone grabs me randomly? What if I get pulled over? It took some very serious conversation for me to get past the fear and realize that I was in control of myself, my safety and my personal space. Not to mention, my friends would be around me to protect me should anything go wrong. It was a very freeing experience, and the edge of fear kept under control was wonderful.

Two, on not being sexually forward. Communication is key. I’ve learned, though my journey in kink, that I have to ask for what I want, be clear about what I want and to accept what I want without being ashamed or embarrassed by it. Why hasn’t this transferred to sex as well? I looked back at my posts, even my erotica, I only mention fucking once at the very end. I don’t write overt sex scenes very often and it is even rarer that I share those that I do. I could blame my parents, I could blame my sheltered early life, I could blame being an introvert and generally shy, I could blame a Puritan society. Excuses, excuses, excuses. These are excuses I have let run my sex life.

How do I stop that? How do I let go of fear and embarrassment? Why am I afraid? What am I afraid of? Rejection? Do I think that if I suggest sex or oral or say I’m thinking about your cock, he’s going to say “No, how could you? What kind of girl are you?” How ridiculous is that? Seriously, I can asked to be beat, set on fire, tied up and swung from the rafters, and yet sex, that pretty much everyone on the planet has, trips me up. How silly and neurotic is that? Talking about sex is my Boggart in the closet (yes, a Harry Potter reference). Laugh at the fear to make it go away.


Clear and Honest Communication

December 16th, 2009

I’ve posted about Saying No and I’ve posted about how talking helps me out of Sub Drop, but communication is important in other ways, too. Clear, honest communication.

It starts with being clear and honest with myself. That may sound like the easy part, but really, it can often be the most challenging.  I lie to myself all the time, how about you?  I can handle that. I won’t get jealous over that. I just want everyone to be happy. I don’t know what I want. I don’t really want anything. I’m okay. Things are fine. It is hard to get past the knee-jerk reaction of everything is fine. It takes effort to look deeper, to examine my wants, needs and desires. It takes work to admit to myself that things are not the way I want. I am a writer, and sometimes, I find, that the only way to know what I’m really thinking, is to put pen to paper and start writing. And keep writing until it’s all there. Every last bit of anger, hurt, joy, love, need, desire, complaint and exultation.

Then comes the next step. Clear and honest communication with my partner/friend/lover/Dom/sub/family/whoever. Once I know what’s true for me, I have to share it with them. I have to tell them, via text, chat, email or Out Loud, what is going on in my head, heart and life. I also have to accept that they may not understand, and that they have just as many things going on in their hearts, heads and lives. I have to strive to be as clear as I can be, but also to listen openly to what they are saying back to me. Communication goes both ways.

An example.  Scene negotiation. If I am asked what I want, and I say I don’t know, that’s not helpful. If he suggests something I don’t want, and I don’t tell him so, then the scene will go bad for us both. If the negotiation goes well, but the scene starts to go badly, I have to be able to clearly and honestly communicate that, or the scene will just get worse. If a scene went badly, clear and honest communication afterward can keep it from happening again.

Another example. Poly. I often tell people who ask, that Poly is all about clear and honest communication. Communicating what the boundaries are. Communication can reduce or resolve jealousy. Communication can keep partners from drifting apart. Communication keeps people safer when going to meet someone new.

What are ways you use to achieve clear and honest communication?