topthemonkey: (really)

This isn't a disclaimer per se, I just want to explain a few things. I think this entry portrays me as a pretty crappy slave, and I generally don't think of myself that way. The Top puts more emphasis on my mental illness issues than I would like, both in this entry and in general. I know those who know me well will not do so, but a caveat: please do not take this entry as representative of me as a person and/or slave.  My own disclaimer.: You're not a crappy slave at all.  You're wonderful, and the whole point of this Journal is that people know it.

The monkey was having a hard time with her PMDD a few nights ago, and it came down to her attacking both herself, and me. It was spurred by her telling me not to do something (I think but am not sure I was hitting her butt with a crop, gently), and me laughing about it, because it seemed like a silly request: one I would honor, but the fact that I was smiling, laughing, light hearted, set her off. Actually it was set off by this: The Top took my glasses and was laughing at my squinting. I protested and he told me it was adorable. I was very frustrated.  As I remarked to you on IM just now, it kinda...remined me of Velma from Scooby Doo for reasons I can't quite explain.  I love the little pouty face you make when I take them.  It's the same pouty face you make when I take your nose.  If it's a serious thing, then we'll work it out.

She got really angry, and started biting and pinching me, trying to wrestle it out of my hands. I kept pushing her off, but she kept coming at me, despite my saying no.

After, she wound up on the floor, crying, for several minutes, not liking who she was at all. And I held in things I wanted to say, because I didn't think they'd help. Yelling and screaming wasn't the answer, but neither was laughing (you considered laughing at my crying?). I wanted to tell her "stop crying, you're being ridiculous, get off the floor", but that would have brought tears, so I stood, and watched, and let her cry out. That was kind of depressing, being curled up in a ball on the floor and having you just stand there silently, making no gesture towards me, not offering tissues.  Given what had just transpired, I wasn't sure HOW to react, honestly.  I offered you a paper towel, tho.

It all happened so quickly I can't honestly remember events now, but maybe she'll fill them in.

The next day, when I brought her out of bed, I put her leash on, and as she was using the bathroom I got a set of cuffs, and told her she was going to get her hair cut for attacking me. She immediately said "red". After a moment of trying to convince her otherwise (you said that I was calling red because I did not trust you, which did not jive with my understanding of safewords or trust), to which she replied "you're not honoring red?" I went with it and took the leash off, I didn't have the typical "correct" reaction of saying "there, there, it's allright". I just felt bitter and angry. I don't think there's any "correct" response though perhaps some are more productive than others. Very rarely do you say "there, there, it's all right" when I call "red.No, the response I'm describing is the typical response most people use in red, that we use in Yellow.

In the BDSM context, "red" is supposed to stop an intense scene (I would contend that it is intended to pause whatever activity is going on. "Intense" and "scene" are so subjective I disagree, though.  Think of the attitude it's given at our local playspace.): safewords are mainly used in places where other forms of communication break down, for example, during a flogging screaming "stop," "no," "ow," or crying or struggling. We use it more thoroughly, but she's used it in the past against taking a bath (I don't remember that one), or getting up after not having had enough sleep, or doing things she felt were embarrassing, as opposed to painful. There was context to all of those, and just saying it like that makes me seem like a brat. Also, "red" is not limited to when things are painful; more often than not, when I have called it the reasons have been emotional. Red is also useful when approaching a "hard limit." For us this generally means permanent damage. Her hair is not quite a "hard limit," as such. Though if I had my druthers it would be. This may be something we can talk about.  I don't want to concede it, though.  Your body is mine, love.  We've cut it short before, and I've told her of events that will lose it for her, without question.

Throughout the day, I continued to feel pent-up anger and aggression, and in the evening, I simply stated the sum total of what had been going on inside me. She asked a question about something else (I have no idea what, or if it was at all related), and I realized that the level of honesty was to the point where I needed to say them, and that it wouldn't be damaging to say so, and I said it:

"A real slave would have sat down and taken her punishment like a good girl."

Her response was "are you trying to get a rise out of me?". I explained that I wasn't, that I had just been thinking of how "real" the BDSM element in our relationship felt, discussing it with a friend. Recalling how insulted I had been when another friend had said something to the effect of: "as much as you guys like to claim you're 24/7, you're really not because you don't have complete control over her." I asked other deep questions like "do you like being mine?" and "do you like wearing that collar?" Make no mistake, this has come up in discussion before, what if she no longer wanted that aspect of our relationship (in hypothetical terms, not because I've contemplated leaving I was going to put that, but thought this entry was already getting tangential enough) -- but in this case, there was no doubt that she wanted it.

He also said he wished that I would of my own accord prepare to be shaved down.
I told him that his anger would fade faster than my hair would grow back.  I wasn't doubting that.  Neither should you.  What you should worry about is if my anger fades before I'm done buzzing down your whole scalp. Some time passed, maybe 5-10 minutes, and I was thinking about whether or not I was going to do what he wanted. On her own, and without being ordered, she went over to the bathroom area and took out the hair clippers (we actually use pet-grade clippers, they can tear through the thickest hair better than most home-grade stuff), and got out the handcuffs and the leash. I cuffed her and told her to sit down.

Before I turned on the clippers, she looked at me somewhat defiantly and said "I'm doing this for health insurance". Actually I said that I was earning my health insurance, to which you agreed.  Indeed, my memory was a little fuzzy. I also said that I wasn't sure if the fact that he was willing to risk whatever anger and resentment came was a positive or negative thing.  How much resentment are you feeling? She cried a bit while I did it, but in the end I only buzzed off a few inches at the base of her neck, and then brushed the rest of her hair back and put it in a ponytail.And you were intensely aroused.  I was aroused after.  I don't recall being aroused during.

I have no doubt that if I would have taken more, that she would have grown more upset, and who knows, that day may come at some point. Like some of the most severe punishments our relationship has seen, I didn't want to do a set amount, I wanted to do it until I wasn't angry anymore. The "beat her until I'm not angry anymore" can work out better or worse (on my side) than the set number method. The fact that she took the punishment on willingly...did a lot to alleviate that anger. But I needed also to make it clear this wasn't just a "mindfuck," wasn't just a case of my making her sit down to see if she'd sit.

But this time, I don't think I ever wanted to shave her down to nothing: I like seeing her long hair as a length of how long she's been with me. We've trimmed for some split ends, so really, it's more like "I've been with you at least this long." What I wanted was to see her put on the cuffs (it's a bit tricky to handcuff your own hands behind your back), sit down, and take it like a good girl. I wanted to have her there, helpless, and say "I'm sorry," and know that absolution was there. I wanted her to trust her master instead of calling red as soon as the order was given. And in reading this after I write it, she may once again feel bad about it.

As her master, I need to show her that I've given it chance after chance, but that I need to push, ever gently, on the rules here, and hold her to them. That's the problem, though. If it happens and you don't punish me, over and over again, of course I'm not going to take threats of punishment seriously. We discussed this.  Which is why I was annoyed at your calling red.  It does not work well for me. She's expressed this. I told her while she was showering that after it had grown in, if she did it again, I'd shave off the same spot, and if she more bad things before then, I'd just take more. I would much rather let her slide on dishes being left in the sink on a night she went to bed sick, than let this go by. Yes, she was in extreme emotional circumstances, but that explains it, not excuses it.

Make no mistake, if I find her doing something like using drugs, or deliberately not taking her meds, or something like that, I won't hesitate to take everything, but having it groomable is a work-related thing, to at least some degree, and it does affect her self esteem. It's not self-esteem exactly. It's really complicated. If I wanted to damage that, I could of course be evil and strike fear into her with the words "reverse mohawk" or "mullet."

In short, I believe there would have been far less angst if she'd have tried hard to believe that I understand her attachment to her hair, and understand the relationship between it and her self-esteem. See above. One of the things she needs to understand is that I'd rather -- much rather -- have us both know that all's forgiven, but she's going to look a little less like she wants to, than have us see each other in ways we don't want the other to see. I would rather look at her and see a girl who made a mistake that will take a few months to fully fade, but whom I forgive fully now. The physical matches the emotional, and it makes sense to me.

Note carefully that I've told her if she wants to dye her hair, that she may (after discussing it with me) but after she does, once her roots start coming in, she's getting buzzed down to nada. Because she's as attached to her hair as she is, she hasn't tried using it to "buy" anything with it, although if she did, it might work. I never even thought of that. That's not really how my mind works.

From a slightly more kinked perspective, I like the concept of this kind of haircut. It's something I associate with learning, and privilege. It's an extreme change of appearance that leaves no permanent damage. New slaves are "fuzzy," and longer hair comes with age, experience, and time. You earn your long hair by not making the mistakes that cause you to lose it, or in a more extreme sense, because you're required to cut it regularly. I also like it because it counters some of the norms of traditional beauty, at least to some degree: reference Natalie Portman's character in V for Vendetta, or in a more extreme example, Britney Spears. (To be fair, Natalie looked hot, Britney didn't, but the pics of Britney were pretty badly candid.) And I'd be lying if I said I didn't love the feel of it under my fingers.

I wonder sometimes, what will happen if it gets worse with age. I love her dearly, and know that she loves me. I know that sometimes when TheCrazy sets in, it's easy to lose sight of that. She's already on a cocktail of medications, and I'm loathe to add in Yet Another to the mix, when many forms of birth control could cancel out existing medications.

I need to get a pic of the back of her head put up before it grows out too much.

topthemonkey: (Default)

The monkey and I have joined our local dungeon/play space. We went to orientation earlier this week where we toured the facility (but didn't play because the monkey had forgotten his ID), and last night, we used the place for the first time.

I should mention that when I met the monkey two years ago, playing in public was very much a hard limit. I wouldn't say "very much." Some time at a fetish con, and living with a few kink-friendly people have changed that somewhat, but a new place with new people is still a stressful experience.

We got there around eight, after having dinner with incredibly slow service in a normally-good Mexican chain, but the monkey was having a bizarre personal fixation problem: he wanted a new pair of shoes, because he's been stubbing his toes rather a lot lately. In fact, he had been obsessing over this for most of the evening, despite the fact that I felt he wouldn't be wearing them most of the time. In my own entry I'll explain this. Anyway, after signing in, we ran out again to do this:we were in an unfamiliar area, and finding a shoe store proved rather stressful. We eventually found a PayLess, but I'm generally not a fan since they tend to fall apart. The monkey did his usual retail-female-uncertainty thing, trying on several pairs of open-toed things and mid-height heels (I did not try on any open-toed, and I wasn't being uncertain I was trying to find a pair that fit) (neither of which would do anything to offset the accident-proneness), and we eventually settled on a nice set of male dress shoes for him.

I got him back to the playspace, stripped him to his underwear, took his glasses, and put him into a small floor-cage while I went and used the bathroom. I took out some toys and laid them out on a chair and on top of the cage, and went and attached one half of our suspension cuffs to some ceiling-chains that were nearby. I exposed his back, and his butt, and got going.

However, after bare-handing him a few times, I started to see the angry expression: the expression that shows the monkey's going to break, going to snap and take an alternate, Sybil-like tone, and get aggressive with me. He growled a few times. I pushed a bit, encouraged him to communicate more, told him it could stop any time, and we kept going. I used a crop, a rod (both very nice things), as well as both of my deerskin floggers on him. (I love this new flogger, it's just so pretty. I really need to put a picture of it up here at some point.1.) He told me that his arms were tired (I said my shoulders were starting to hurt and I'm trying to be more conscious of such things since I've started regularly going to a chiropractor), and he needed something to lean against, and I moved him over to a very heavy St. Andrews Cross: really well made, with adjustable restraint points. I put the suspension cuffs up on those, and as his tits were just straddling the "X", put a set of clamps on those as well, so if he backed off, the chain would tug. I continued flogging, quite hard, with the Big Flogger, really developing a good rhythm and form.2, moving along to my other toys, the rubber one occasionally, covering his entire back side pretty well. I wasn't going for catharsis or anything like that, but it got to the point where I could hear him sobbing, and I looked and found his nose runny. I got him some tissues and let him down, and after some brief cleanup we headed to the "cooldown area", a lounge of sorts, and met some of the group. The timeline there is a little messed up. I was crying a good portion of the time I was on the cross, the Top knew and asked me if I wanted to continue and I said I did.

I cannot express enough how awesome and comfortable these people made me feel. While I of course don't mention names (hell, even our own), it was a very friendly, fun crowd, easily relatable, and very accommodating. I got a chance to play show and tell with our suspension cuffs, and tell brag about the deal we got on them, and the like.

After some others proceeded in for another round of playing, we did too. This time we wound up in the "medical play" room, where I tied the monkey to a stirrup table with a plethora of a rope, put a spreader bar between his legs, and gagged him with a roll of vetwrap (as in, just popped the roll in his mouth). This is the condensed version. A few people walked through the room while we were going at it, all were respectful, none conversed unless I started it, but I tend to like over-the-shoulder conversation. At one point, a couple giving a tour peeked quietly in. The Top waved at them. It was very surreal.

We hadn't brought any lube, or a vibrator, unfortunately: I had told the monkey to, but he had felt that he wouldn't be at that level of comfort on this trip. Consequently the only lube we had was some SurgiLube that was already there, and I worked him up for what was probably close to 45 minutes before he dried out and my arm started getting tired. He tried to tell me through the gag that he needed more lube and how to better finger-fuck me, but I was trying to be cautious as we'd never used this product before. He seemed okay with it, so I slathered it in, and went back at it. Another few minutes of (ahem) deep tissue massage, and he was ready to come. However, I need to mention something here...when I thought he was getting close, I *ordered* him to come, and he did, within a few seconds. This...amazes me. It's been a stressor before, both for him and for me, gives him performance anxiety, and he handled it so well. I think a big factor in that is I'm trying to let myself go and be more obvious when I feel myself getting close and the Top has also gotten better at picking up on when I'm on the verge of orgasm.

Again, cleanup. Again, back out to the cooldown area. The ride home was nice, too, we talked a lot. I shared some radically honest things about an ex, and the best sex we had ever had (the ex and I). I also related that because this dungeon requires condoms for vaginal and anal penetration, that I didn't think I'd be having much sex there. I revealed to the monkey that there's a loss of some sensation since my hernia surgery. Not a lot...just coupled with the additional loss of sensation of a condom, it's just not...nice. I like the closeness of flesh on flesh; I think once the monkey gets his wisdom teeth out and his TMJ under better control, we may do more oral there.

Thoughts for future visits:

  1. I need some kind of transporable gear carrier. I ideally like the "street salesman" case, a suitcase with unfoldable legs type thing, but other things are workable and my mind's now going at it. I am in favor of buying a case from For Your Nymphomation, perhaps this. Or just a good duffel bag.
  2. The lockers they have there are just a few inches too short for some of our impact toys. But they bend.
  3. Other people I'm working with have expressed nervousness at public play but feelings of being okay with being a helper, one to go get water and get me toys, and otherwise observe. I'm thinking a blue play-collar (get it?) for this purpose might be great. Oh look, sub-shop's having a sale, and this is on sale too.
  4. Buying some food in advance. I'm thinking hitting the nearby subway would have probably been a good idea. This kind of stuff is exhausting. I really only like Subway sandwiches immediately after they're made. Otherwise the dressing soaks in and it's oogy.
  5. Other things, I'm sure. Things the monkey will add, I'm sure.

1. Hell, I need to have one of the slaves photo-catalogue all our toys here, and rate them on cost, history, and pain factor.
2. I believe flogging is somewhat an art and a technique, and I'd actually like to make up a flogger Kata

topthemonkey: (Default)

Note: this is the final part of a five part entry, posted in five daily parts. It's strongly suggested you start with the first, here, and read from there. Note that single-spaced, this series of entries comes out to nine pages in OpenOffice, so the daily breaks are for both digestibility as well as readability. On the same note, I think I may get more useful comments and feedback with multiple parts. Please note:I state defining principles of a lot of what we do here, ergo comments are not only welcome, but requested. They are screened by default, if it's okay to unscreen please tell me. This notice will appear on each entry.

In the previous four entries, I covered, as straightforwardly and as honestly as I could, my belief systems, how I see people, and my justifications behind it. It may make me seem unfair, or self-centered, but I'm being open here: I forge the types of relationships I forge. Throughout it all, every time I've found myself posting something that I didn't see as accurate, I stopped, backspaced, and went over it. Any time I found myself saying something that I couldn't believe I'd said, but then I found to be true, I forced myself to leave it in. Sure, copy editing, spelling corrections, and restructuring happened, but I couldn't let what I felt escape the entry.

Part 5: Explorations in Radical Honesty

The Monkey and I recently watched an awesome Fox show starring Tim Roth called "Lie to Me". The show is about a team of "deception experts" who are able to tell when people are lying by facial micro-expressions made for less than 1/5 of a second. It's based on a real person, Paul Ekman, who pre-reviews every episode.

In this show, there is a supporting character named Eli Loker who adheres to something called Radical Honesty. The link there is to a wikipedia entry, and a copyrighted series of books and self-help lectures, but it's a very, very simple concept.

Say what you're feeling. Say what's on your mind. I've always tried to do this on some level with the Monkey, but now, I'm pushing it one step further, even removing the last of the filter. It also implies things like "don't ask questions you don't want an honest answer to". I suppose the classic "does this dress make me look fat?" would be an example. Supposedly, if the show is to be believed, the average person lies three times in ten minutes of conversation. About past experiences, about knowing things they don't, about seeming more right than they are. About the time, number, and frequency of sexual encounters. About inane things. About important things. And it comes to the point that you start to get not only used to it, but believing it. It's a filter that takes things from the speech center of your brain, and embellishes, polishes, omits, and distorts. It's a bullshit filter.

I've often said that the relationship I've had with the monkey has been one of the most honest and open ones I've ever had, but there's still been things I've been less than true about: a friend I had let be dominant over me, previous experiences in life, things as minor as a food allergy I've claimed to have ever since I've known her.

As I worked to shut down the filter, over the first few days I felt like I was drunk. I babbled incessantly. In fact, I gestured as I normally do when drunk. This is actually not surprising, as being drunk shuts off the same filter, so my brain was in a similar mode. I said every thought that popped into my head, no matter how inane (and given enough caffeine, there are quite a few of those). I've mentioned numerous things to the monkey, and with at least a few other people, in both emails and IM conversations, I've simply gotten things off my chest, cleared the air, said things I hadn't said previously or been saying to try to be nice, to be tactful. For some people, in IM, as soon as I saw their names something came into my mind, I realized it was true, and typed it: some radical things about ways I had damaged relationships, people I had wronged, opportunities I had missed. Every time I think about other things in the past that I might have said that are even the most bit misleading, I blurt them out. I correct myself constantly now, until I'm sure meaning is straight. Conversations are just a little stressful with the monkey. If I'm upset, I've been saying it lately instead of keeping calm. This may pass, it may not.

Being this honest doesn't mean the complete lack of tact, and it doesn't mean the complete loss of at least a little sugar-coating. If someone's wearing something that makes them look bad, there are a couple ways to say it as opposed to first-instinct. "That's not attractive on you" gives the same message as "God that makes you look ugly". I suppose the most important thing may be to respect people's limits: if they tell you outright that they don't like this, then I suppose like everything else, there needs to be the capability of safe space.

I would love to have this concept with everyone who wears a collar, and I would love to have it be bidirectional, but like so much else, that part wouldn't be mandatory: some people could only take it on after a long time, and some people never could. Some of the guidelines I've mentioned previously start to approach this, though.

I already push subs to this: to tell me what's wrong when I ask, to tell me what their needs are, to tell me when they're not okay instead of shelling. I especially insist on "safewording", and giving me status updates when you've got heavy stuff going on, either inflicted by me, or by life in general. I think on this one, I'm going to lead by example. Some of you reading this may have already seen this if you've been speaking to me.

Once I've explored it on that scope, I may employ it with my greater circle of friends and acquaintances in general. I'd honestly love to be able to employ this in my work life as well; but there are walls. Mentioning your love life at work (especially when you're into BDSM and are poly and at least a little bit bi) is a little bit weird, and just a little bit dangerous, but I can at least shut off the bullshit.

I freely admit that I can't do it with strangers. Not yet, anyway.

Conclusion

I'd like to thank anyone who's read all the way through to this point. It's been an interesting writing experience, and it's been useful both to hone my writing style, as well as to get a lot of things out of my head and into text, both about the past, and about the future: where I've been, where I'd like to go. How I've lived, how I'd like to live. While I have been told by some that I write using a very knowing/knowledgable tone, the truth is, just like everyone else on the planet, I'm still learning and still figuring it out. People are complex, and when you have multiple people, in multiple co-mingled relationships together, that require the degrees of trust these do, it can be difficult, and there can be numerous unseen variables. I don't propose to be an expert. I'm a programmer, a techie, a appreciator of hard science: I analyze things, and I come up with logical conclusions and relationships. People aren't always logical, and they don't always adhere to rules.

I need to be honest with myself as well: perhaps, in all this, I'm just trying to come up with some method to bribe/nudge/push people into fitting into my definitions, or rule them out. I can't honestly know, and time will tell.

For those of you who haven't been regular readers, please know that comments are screened, and that I love/crave feedback. I tend to reply to screened comments, which requires me to de-screen them momentarily (obviously if you have the option to email comments turned off, you miss out). Once this entry has had time to "set" for a while, I'll likely add them to this journal's memories listing.

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topthemonkey

October 2012

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