Mentors Vs. The Cult of Personality.

When I first started dipping my toes into the wider world of BDSM (AKA found Fetlife and joined the local community), I made a few very telling mistakes… and it’s something I see a lot of still happening to people on a regular basis.

I fell into the trap of hero worship (emulation) rather than forging my own path and adopting things that had practical real world value for my life and relationship.

You see, my town is incredibly small and at the time there were few (No) power exchange couples locally for me to talk to and exchange ideas with – So I went searching, and this is where I found out the difference between carefully constructed fantasy versus real world applications. For those of you familiar with them, I aspired to be the next Peter Acworth, Stefanos, and James Mogul. Is this smart or healthy? I suppose it could be, had I not been taken up in the PERSONA’s rather than the real people behind the characters.  (For reference Stefanos is still someone I’d love to meet/attend a class from.) I very quickly was approached by someone who kindly offered some advice Via PM on fetlife and Helped nudge me in a better direction, To this day even though we don’t talk much I follow things he (and his slave) likes and comments on closely.

Over the years since then I’ve learned the difference between hero worship and mentors.

Mentors are people you can go to with questions, or in need of advice, and for the most part they are readily available to answer said questions or give out some wisdom. They’re regular people with flaws, insecurities, and practical real world experience. They can fill gaps in your skill set, and might offer other people to talk to who have a better grasp of certain subject matter. They want to see you succeed and reach your goals, and will help facilitate that however is needed, they should push you and challenge you. Mentors should not: try to fuck you,  sabotage your goals, or not practice what they preach.

Hero worship is blind allegiance to the ideal of something. Imperfections, and the struggle to become are swept aside in favor of a sparkling view of effortless success. The sad and accurate truth is these individuals are usually lauded with praise, and afforded attention that others are either denied, or have to work harder to achieve by order of magnitude. In such a sexually charged environment like the BDSM/and Leather cultures something as simple as a certain aesthetic or method of play can cause the hive mind to elevate that person to status and credibility that they might not otherwise attain or deserve.

So whats the point?

I see time and time again mistakes I’ve made manifesting in others, the Cult of Personality is strong, and the pull is intoxicating – To fit in, to aspire to the pinnacle, it can be human nature to do so, all too easily, and the followers of the these people can be zealots, from the D-list to A-list celebrities in vanilla and BDSM circles.

Many people confuse this with mentorship whether they mean to or not. Blindly accepting something as the proper path, or one to aspire to, will, in the long run, cause a pretty spectacular train wreck, publicly or privately.

Think critically of the people you put your trust in, your future in this subculture is your own – don’t blindly follow and expect success through emulation of your hero’s or trying to copy their aesthetic. On the flip side evaluate if you want to be a paper paragon, or someone people want to follow based on realism and merit.

I for one plan to do what I do, because I like it, and if people choose to ask – I have no problems digging up the pristine, along with the dirty truth of my journey because they just might learn something.

 

Syn

 

 

 

 

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Plans, Goals and Declarations of Intent.

I really do dislike new years resolutions. I firmly believe that if something is important enough, there is no need to wait to accomplish, or start it.

However, I felt that I needed to put some plans in writing both from a personal goal standpoint, as well as a kink standpoint, a declaration of intent if you will. Much of this stems from My little fae’s post on our goals for the upcoming year, and more still because I rarely spill out plans and prefer to keep them in my head, causing some to be overlooked or lost. So here we are.

From a personal (and more vanilla) standpoint – Operation look better naked continues, it’s a slow process and one that will take some learning, I’ve never actually done any sort of a bodybuilding cut, and while I am stronger than I have ever been – I’m being a little vain and wanting to look a little more aesthetic. So back to self-experimentation once again. I want to continue to learn from the stoic philosophy, I find that stoicism helps me calm down here and there, reduce anxiety and think a little more critically about situations I find myself in. In that vein – I also want to start reading more again, I used to crush a book a week, sometimes two or three depending, and I have so many books sitting waiting to be read that it’s starting to look insurmountable.

From a kink/Power Exchange standpoint – I must admit, I’m very happy with where I and we find ourselves. We’ve met and befriended some amazing people this past year, and I can’t wait to continue to cultivate those relationships. To that end, we do both wish to travel more and connect more with the Herd, not to mention the people from other provinces who we felt/feel a strong connection with. I think this year is going to be one of just enjoying ourselves, and learning, I am very much looking forward to it.

From a personal Kink and relationship standpoint, there are a few things I want to learn/do/focus on. Relationship wise, seldom and I are in a better spot than ever – I do want to finish buying the last of her bootblack kit, as I know it’s something she enjoys, and truth be told, it’s fucking hot. I want to continue to practice with cigar play/service, I am learning the ash, and how it behaves, heat, and relearning the joy of a nice smoke and scotch. I want to continue to refine and perfect my rough body play techniques, incorporate more boot work, and I realize that operation look better naked will help with the stamina in that regard.

I would also be remiss if I didn’t mention my other partner – Lola. I want to be able to make more time for her, it’s hard being in a long distance relationship, between kids, conflicting schedules and obligations, we’ve had one dinner date. At the very least I’d like to have more face time with her – We do talk almost every day, however our schedules are a bit opposite, about the time I’m going to the gym after work, she is heading to sleep with her primary, and by the time I get up for the day/work she is already halfway through hers. I feel a bit…..guilty (?) about the lack of time/quality conversation we’ve had. I plan to fix that.

Finally one thing I really do need to work on, and I am aware this is a little counterintuitive when you realize I talked about stoicism earlier in this writing. I need to learn how to become a bit more of a hedonist, and not fucking worry about so much. A little self-indulgence, self-gratification and just enjoying the moment is something I’m horrible at. I constantly over analyze, and over think things I shouldn’t – both in BDSM and vanilla life. My little fae is excellent at pointing it out, but I don’t think she realizes just how deep that goes into my brain. I plan to learn how to shut that shit off to an extent, not to my detriment, but enough that I can just learn to enjoy pleasure for the sake of pleasure. (It makes sense to me anyway).

So there you have it, just a few thoughts about the coming year – I think it’s going to be amazing.

If one does not know to which port one is sailing, no wind is favourable. – Seneca

Regards,

 

Syn.

Hypocrisy and Realism.

 

Bear with me, I am about to get a bit ranty.

A Long while ago I wrote about over-romanticizing the lifestyle and setting yourself up for failure. I think it’s high time I revisited that.

Now before I start, I’d like to point out two things.

I am Liable to piss off a lot of people with this post, and that’s ok – if it pisses you off, you likely needed to hear it.

I am by no means referencing erotica, or fictional writings with this post. That’s a completely different animal.

Now I may be completely off base, or maybe it’s just me, however, I don’t see submission or dominance as any sort of “gift”. What power exchange is at its core is a form of symbiosis. Both of you working in concert to build the life, relationship and sexual experience you want. At the end of the day, the Master makes the final decisions on what is and isn’t acceptable within the bounds of the negotiated limits, yes, the slave can say no but that will 99% of the time end the relationship as it exists.  In my case, you can say no, but there better be a damn good reason, and if there isn’t you better do as you’re told.

Time and time again I see writings from other D-types that are pandering and catering to a completely unrealistic view of the lifestyle, mostly for likes on FetLife. They make it appears you will find a d-type or s-type and suddenly you become otherworldly and hold the secrets of pure power exchange in the palm of your hand. Suddenly with the proliferation of the internet, ANYONE can seem like an authority, and precious few people call them on their bullshit. Even me, you read the writings I post, and assume I know what I’m talking about, but do I have the experience my words carry? I encourage you to ask – I have a long-term slave, I have friends that can vouch for me, and at the end of the day I try to pass on what I’ve learned to those that have EARNED the knowledge. When I repeatedly say I am an expert at impact play, ASK people who have seen me play (or played with me) if that’s the truth. DO NOT blindly assume I am an authority because I write well, or post pretty pictures that make you weak in the loins.

I read something the other day that blew my goddamn mind. Regarding a threesome, the D-type in question said that it wasn’t about him, it was a “special gift” for his girl. BULLSHIT. If you receive even a bit of compersion from the joy of your partner, it IS about you in a small way – but let’s be honest here: I’ve seen countless posts on how ALL men want to get their dicks wet, and that’s all they want. Barring that, how many times have you seen a meme, or another post about sex being the primary driving factor for men, and even some women? you can’t have it both ways and applaud one person for their altruism while condemning another for being honest that a threesome will be fucking hot and that’s what they are focusing on. I want a cuckquean experience with a cute lady and my girl – why? because I’m fucking horny, and I like sex…. does that diminish my power exchange or the reality of it? No – but I won’t pander to the masses and tell you a cuckquean relationship will be a “special gift” for my slave. We both want it because we like sex, and we’re sluts. If a full-on relationship with the cuckcake happens, that’s awesome too, another person for sexy-times, with or without a Power exchange. Please also bear in mind, I/we are looking for partners that aren’t a cuckquean dynamic either – which might or might not have a sexual component.

It’s interesting to me to say the least, that with my writing about separating myself from the social media herd, I had some advice from someone I respect and admire, telling me to just shoot a PM and get to know the individual that caught my eye, So I did. I didn’t come on like a creep, I referenced something non-sexual that caught my eye, and was polite and respectful (trust me, I had my girl read and approve the message). I was summarily dismissed without so much as a second sentence. I’ve had people I find attractive, basically tell me to my face, that I’m not attractive enough, or assertive enough, or any other host of things, Hell I’ve even had people (on both sides of the slash) tell me that if I wasn’t in the way, they’d try and seduce My girl. These same people sing the praises of some fictional internet persona (some of which I know) and claim that because of their pictures, or writing, they are somehow “understanding” something those of us with real, palpable experience do not.

All of the above are forms of hypocrisy I have encountered on a fairly regular basis, and it perpetuates an unhealthy environment, where more and more you have people developing unrealistic expectations of people, power exchange, and potential partners on a whole. Not every D-type is going to have a supreme grasp of power exchange or every technique BDSM has to offer. Not every S-type is going to be a supple and pliable mind, or body you can order around without working on bonding with them. Not all potential partners will be physical sex personified in a suit or leather dress. Be smart enough to recognize pandering and call out hypocrisy, both from yourself and others – don’t blindly become a fanboi/gurl.

Now that you’ve read this far, I imagine there’s a ton of folks foaming at the mouth, waiting to tell me I’m wrong, or misguided, or mad, or I’m pissed because my life sucks.

Sorry to tell you, for the most part, I love my life. Just like anyone, there are things I’d like to change (and I am working to do so), but I felt that so many say we never talk about difficult issues – it was about time I tackled a bit of the hypocrisy I see on a day to day basis. Feel free to disagree and educate me, but don’t be an asshole about it.

Regards,

 

Syn.

Reflections on a Long Term Power Exchange.

Earlier this month my little fae and I celebrated 9 years together, and almost all of that time was in one form of power exchange or another. We’ve transitioned from Top/ bottom to Dom/sub, to Master/slave and to what we are now (it could be taken as some form of Owner/property and Leatherman/leathergirl).

So the big question is what has allowed us to last as long as we have? Over the years I have learned some things that have surely helped, but not all the learning has been easy. Worthwhile, yes, easy, no.

I thought to myself that sharing a few of the things I have learned about power exchange might be a good idea.

You will fuck up – a lot, and that’s ok. Through mistakes and the ownership of them, your best growth can, and will happen. Nobody is perfect, even Masters, contrary to what they’d have you believe. I’ve fucked up quite a few things with my little fae, but through communication, analyzation, and adaptation we’ve moved forward, and carved out things that work for us. Your journey will no doubt be different than mine, but by stowing ego, and thinking critically you can help your power exchange grow and create long-lasting pillars to build the foundation of your power exchange on.

It’s ok to have a slave who is smarter, more professionally successful, or further along their path than you are. We’re all human, with our own strengths and weaknesses. We end up being a product of the people we surround ourselves with. My little fae is far more professionally successful and intelligent than I will ever be (even though she tells me I’m crazy). I value her input on how to better (more professionally) handle work issues, advice on people, and her experiences in the community from years ago. Does this diminish the person or Master that I am? fuck no. If anything, it makes me a better person, partner and capable of making better choices for us. Put aside the pride and realize you have a whole pool of knowledge to draw from.

Be open and honest about needs/wants/desires. I’ve been blessed that my girl is open minded and fairly receptive to just about anything. She would do anything I asked, however, it’s much easier when they are receptive, encouraging and excited. For a long while I found it hard to talk about (what I considered) some of my weirder fetishes, Cuckqueaning, Degradation, and humiliation, even heavy S&M play.  Once I learned that by using my words I could find a partner I wasn’t miserable with and even might have some kinks in common with dating, fucking, play and power exchange got easier, more enjoyable and downright eye-opening. If you’re in a power exchange that can’t deliver on your basic relationship needs, then why are you even in it? Can you compromise on yours and your partner’s desires? Do you REALLY need something, or is it a want? As a Master these are important questions – Sure, you may -want- a supermodel who cooks like Nigella Lawson, fucks like Angela White, and Dresses like Dita Von Teese, (or is that just me?) but do you NEED that? Be realistic and honest.

Don’t fall in love with your own legend or pretend to be something you’re not. It’s great to take pride in who you are, and what you do – however pretending you’re something you’re not, or allowing untrue stories to proliferate WILL be damaging in the long run. Again, we’re all human – this wonderful mess of personality, skills, faults, and virtues are uniquely yours. I’m confident in the fact I am VERY good at Rough body and impact play of all intensities. I am also confident that I need work with Cigar play and confidence approaching potential partners. Would I attempt to mentor or teach someone either of these skills? Not a fucking chance, I’d end up at the least giving bad information that might cause someone to correct them later (and I’ll look like an asshole), and at the worst severely injure someone.  Consider it negligence or unhealthy ego if you will.

Don’t overload yourself to the detriment of your primary relationship. Now, this isn’t just poly people. Having a slave/property (S-type) in general can be a lot of work, mentally, emotionally, and physically. Priorities here are important. A good slave can be incredibly self-sufficient once they reach a certain point, Give them their instructions and off they go. However, if your plate is too full with work, family, other partners, and all the obligations that come with life, then you need to perhaps step back and prioritize the things you need to keep your relationship healthy, not only with your slave, but with yourself and others. Take time for reflection, self-care and making sure your energies are being spent in a way that enriches your power exchange(s).

Be part of your kink community. Go to events, meet people, volunteer or organize. Masters too should serve, service to one’s community and others is one of the greatest gifts you can give. Knowledge, experience, and opinions. All of these things can foster discussion, and in some cases growth for other people – help build the community you want to see, and your life will improve because of it, and so will your power exchange.

Finally, something I find most important. Never stop being a student. Learn voraciously, read not just things about the lifestyle, but read books on management, psychology, and philosophy. Apply the principles to your life and power exchange, learn from others mistakes, and how to avoid them yourself. Be a student of life.

Have fun, be silly, laugh often, play hard, and be open to experiences.

Adapt and Survive.

 

Just a few thoughts from a long-term power exchange.

 

Regards,

 

Syn

Another Trip Around the Daystar – Reflections on the Journey.

Well, another trip around the daystar is done. I turned 38 this year.

I was always wondering how to mark this occasion, I do every year. Drinks with friends, time with My little fae, a dinner date with my other partner, and surprisingly a lot of introspection and planning.

So what have I learned this year?

First and most importantly, I learned that going forward, my slave and I together can tackle anything that comes our way. Even more so than the years past, we’ve begun planning for the future. From our engagement to Attending Wicked in the West, and everything in between. We want to move forward, and experience – do different and new things. We want to help grow Leather Culture closer to home, and in the process grow together as Leatherfolk.  Our power exchange is stronger than ever, but we’ve realized it doesn’t exactly fit into a nice neat box, Master/slave, Owner/property, Leatherman/Leathergirl, we’ve come to be so much more than when we started this crazy ride just under 10 years ago. I am beyond grateful.

I’ve realized even more than last year, I’m not everyone’s cup of tea, and that’s OK. When you meet me I am equal parts smartass, sarcastic, and introverted. I will good-naturedly tease, and some can’t handle the reality of my relationship with my little fae. I know some people think I’m an asshole, but those that look deeper, or catch on that I’m rarely serious are the type I’d rather surround myself with. For friends, family, and tribe, I would do almost anything – and I have also realized that being able to balance healthy “giving” and receiving of energy sometimes I have to say no, or enough. Authentic people who care will respect that, and if they don’t then it’s their loss, not mine. That’s self-care, not greed or being a poor friend.

In the last bit of this year, I’ve also come to the conclusion, that I am the one in control of the things I experience, and associate with. I’ve taken steps to experience Polyamory in a healthy and less reckless/more organic way. My little fae is fully on board, and I am blessed that my other partner is and was a dear friend first, Her and her primary. I’m looking forward to the future there, it’s just tricky for me having to experience all the “firsts” of a new relationship so many years down the road again.

I have also come to the conclusion, that I am an equal opportunity Sadist/Master. I could see our house having a boy in service, just as evenly as having another female, Sex is a separate issue. We still want to find another partner for U/us, however, I’ve also become more accepting to the idea of Dot having a sub/play partner as long as there is no other dominant in the picture, that I think would create a hell of a mess that would be detrimental to our goals. Poly was never off the table, it is my reaction to it which has undergone a change.

I’ve come to realize that My Leather has always been a part of me, but as I get older it evolves. The core tenants have always been there, but I am less apologetic and ashamed of everything else than ever before. I used to worry about what people would think of the person that I was, but thanks to some self-improvement work I’ve done, that no longer matters. In the end, having people who have a problem with who you are and what you’ve become can be more of a yard stick for progress than anything. Leather is no different, authenticity will breed haters, that’s how you know you are succeeding.

Going forward I’m going to continue what I have been doing, I will adapt when I need to, continue reading the works of the stoics, and other modern thinkers. I will continue on my Leather path, and do so with my little fae at my side (not to mention others if they will walk with me).

I think I have a good plan for the next trip around the daystar. I’ve made progress this year mentally, physically, philosophically, and emotionally.

All in all I am very pleased with the year, and can’t wait to see what lessons and experiences are waiting for me in the next.

Regards,

 

Syn.

Technosexuals and Petitioning

Recently I was thinking about some things in relation to the lifestyle and how things differ from vanilla dating, which of course led me to thinking about certain things that seem to be headed the way of the vanilla. One in particular stood out to me, and I think I’m going to take a moment and dive into it a little further.

Why is it, when you hear Masters talk about the old days a large portion of that was slaves/submissives approaching the Master to petition service, and yet today that seems almost nonexistent?

Don’t get me wrong I understand that evolution will happen, but extinction of a practice that makes so much sense in the last years seems odd to me. Especially in a Power Exchange context.

I suppose the technosexual era we appear to be living in is at least partially to blame. Look at vanilla dating, more and more websites are the way to go to find a potential partner. Tinder, Plenty of Fish, OK Cupid, even Adult Friend Finder; Swipe, click and cycle through multiple potential dates in seconds. Aesthetics and shallow “about me’s” are the signposts people use to streamline and (in my opinion) cheapen the getting know you process.

I am starting to see this more and more in the Power Exchange circles as well, I see and hear multiple cries of “fake dom!”, “pseudo-sub!”, etc. So my question is this: Why, in something as important as finding a permanent D-type, are submissives complacent in actively “shopping” themselves around?

Think of finding a potential Master like applying for a job, you find a company you want to work for, so you do your research, tailor your resume, approach the company with your resume, and then (hopefully) Have an interview to assess compatibility, both for you as a perspective employee, and they, as a potential employer.

This is the essence of the petition – Lets use myself as an example. I am a Master (in that I own a slave), Very well versed in rough body play, mind fucks, and have a disciplinarian approach to power exchange. I own a slave already who has multiple years in the lifestyle, is more than adept at domestic duties, all forms of service, and boot blacking.  All of these things are discernible from our profiles on Fetlife and WordPress blogs. So, you see something that you wish to learn, be a part of, or are interested for other reasons. Do you have an inventory of BDSM and life related skills? Yes? Good!

At this point it’s on you to make you intentions known that you wish to petition, generally with goals for the relationship in mind. I can offer x,y,z skills to the house/relationship in turn for learning x,y,z skills from you. Sex? negotiated. S&M play? negotiated. S-type Role? Negotiated. Have what amounts to an interview to assess compatibility on both sides of the equation, and then the consideration phase could begin.

Now I know right now, out there someone, or multiple someones, are reading this and thinking “What the fuck? that’s too much work! You’re a self important douchecanoe.” So I ask you this simple question – Do you value yourself, your skills, and want what you have to offer be the focus of a relationship, rather than having (or being) arm candy and a quick rough fuck? (which are completely fucking awesome too, if that’s the basis of the arrangement). I hear so many people bitching and pissing and moaning that they have more to offer a partner than just nice tits, or a big cock. Well petitioning can PROVE it. Prove you wish to learn, improve, and work on goals as part of a relationship.

In the process some very hot S&M, Sex, and general debauchery is bound to happen. It’s not always the job of the D-type to find you, be proactive and go find what YOU want, because you know better than anyone else what you have to offer and what you want out of a potential Master. If you wait for them to find you, you’re liable to have a string of ill fitting D-types (read: Fake), or be able to weed them out before wasting your time, and vice-versa.

Just some thoughts.

Regards,

 

Syn