Defending Your Life.

As anyone who knows me can tell you, I have a very eclectic taste in movies, my top 5 are all over the map. I do want to talk about one in particular. However, the list has an overriding theme that I think will become clear if you are familiar with them.

  1. Fight Club
  2. Nightmare On Elm Street (1984)
  3. Tombstone
  4. What Dreams May Come
  5. Defending Your Life

Now if you know all the movies on my list, you get major cinephile cred with me.  That said, I am sure more than a few of you had to click the link for Defending Your Life. It’s major draw in the 90’s was (and would be today) that Meryl Streep was in it. Truth be told this is one of the few movies with her in it I can stomach (and maybe Julie and Julia). That’s neither here nor there, however. Have you figured out the one thread that ties this movie to the others on my list?

They are all about confronting fear or dealing with it.

Albert Brooks wrote this movie and the end premise is about conquering fear and how many times you are fearless quantifying if you are ready to move on to the hereafter.

So what does this have to do with either my journey, or BDSM, or both?

Bear with me, I want to tell you a little story about myself first – we’ll get there, I promise.

When I was in high school, not many people knew, but I LOVED sports – and a few would have agreed I was really good at quite a few of them. I never played on high school teams though.

One afternoon when I was 16 or 17 (grade 11) a bunch of us had a free period and would go fuck around in the gym. Well rather than just shooting hoops by myself, as I did ALL the time at home, and during some free periods, there was a volleyball net set up. You see, my school had one of the best Highschool AAA volleyball teams in the country (for both boys and girls). In my high school, volleyball players were treated with the same reverence some high schools treat their basketball and football players. Well, I couldn’t shoot hoops, but one of the girls I had known since primary school invited me to fill the 6th position on their team, I am sure the rest of the varsity team was salivating at the prospect of spiking a ball directly into my face. You see on a good day back then I was 5’9 and 180 Lbs – Short and built like a beer keg – great for the martial arts I was involved in, not so good for vertical lift.

So, the game begins and I try as hard as I can, I’m diving for digs, and receiving in the back row fairly well.  I Always try as hard as I can, no matter what I’m doing. Suddenly it’s my turn in the front row, now for those who are not familiar the front row is responsible for attacking – Spikes, and blocking spikes – Oh shit. Truth be told I did better than OK, and the Short beer keg looking bastard that I was even managed to get high enough to Spike the ball with a reasonable downward arc.

When we were done and just sitting back on the bleachers waiting for the bell, I had 3 members of the boys and girls varsity teams ask me why I never tried out – in their estimation, I would have made the cut. I never did answer them with more than a smile and a shrug. But I knew the answer clanging around in my head all too well.

I was Scared of Fucking up and being laughed at and ridiculed.

I have no real defense, other than to explain that I was raised that way – my parents were both scared of me getting hurt, or worse if I ever played sports or did anything physical. Even the martial arts I was involved in, I kept MUCH of the physicality of the sparring to myself so that they wouldn’t “convince” me to stop going.

Now that all of that is at least 20+ years behind me, I look back on it and laugh at what a poor mindset that was. I look at my mom who I love dearly and see all the irrational (to me) things she still harbors fear about, I don’t want to end up like that – however it is hard to undo YEARS of growing up with that, much like deprogramming people who are no longer catholic, but will still answer “and also with you” when they hear “may the lord be with you”.

With BDSM, and power exchange, We are all living outside of the norm – most of society would Squirm if they ever witnessed a scene between a sadist and masochist in real time. I remember an incident on fetlife with a face slapping video: someone watched it and because people fear that which is unknown or foreign to them this man threatened to call the police on them for domestic violence. Fear is everywhere, and it can be destructive to not only yourself but others too if you let it leak out.

Many facets of personal growth in the lifestyle can boil down to conquering fears – that is why it’s so important to have a slave or s-type that encourages growth, along with the Master doing the same for the slave. As the Master in the relationship, most will tell you we must have a good handle on our fears,

As the Master in the relationship, most will tell you we must have a good handle on our fears, and truth be told we do, but not as firm a grip as most think. Masters can have fear too – I choose to address mine in many ways, writing here, talking with my little fae, and seeking advice and opinions from people we are close to, and respect.

I’ve made a conscious decision to meet my fears as head on as possible and deal with them if at all possible. I do still have a few that I struggle with daily (and sometimes less frequently) but I will get there eventually – it’s a marathon, not a race.

Bob Diamond: They can make a mistake. You shouldn’t let others get to you like this. Just follow what’s in here.

[points to his heart]

Daniel Miller: [Daniel nods in agreement]

Bob Diamond: Don’t worry, and don’t kick yourself forever. Just take the opportunities when they come.”      – Rip Torn as Bob Diamond, and Albert Brooks as Daniel Miller in Defending Your Life.

I will follow what I want in my heart, and deal with my fears – quite possibly the most imporant thing I can do as a Man, a Master, and someone trapped on this floating rock for a finite period of time.

Regards,

 

Syn.

Scattered Thoughts.

Most days I am beyond amazed that a woman like My little fae not only agreed to, but throws herself into her life with me. I’m not the easiest person to serve, and I know this – I can be demanding, harsh and sometimes I am overcome with my own past rearing it’s ugly head.

Skeletons are a motherfucker to deal with some days.

Other times I wish I could do more, be more, accelerate my personal growth in area’s I lack. I understand it’s a slow process, I also understand that I should take things at a mediated pace so that I don’t fall back into old patterns and archaic (to me) thoughts.

With a kinky event coming up, I am reminded of two things: One, My little fae is all I need.

Two: although I wish I (we) could find us another partner to share the fun, love, and general tomfuckery that is our lives, it happens when you least expect it…. I should feel blessed that at least someone we had been talking to, while interested, is not currently in a place she feels comfortable to commit to anything.

Our love life is amazing, and we are together – but the thought in my head to be more, do more is always there… like a persistent itch I can’t get rid of. dot has assured me she is happy – but I always feel as though I should do more to show her that I appreciate her service, love, devotion, and council.

Random thoughts, and scattered sentences… but I needed to write them out…. not bad for ten minutes at work, sadly solving and deciphering the mess that is my head will take longer.

Leather – Revisiting my Path.

I’ve been thinking and re-reading my old posts a lot lately, and I have to admit I’ve changed my view on quite a few things, my opinions and thoughts have evolved and therefore I think it’s high time I revisited some of my older posts and shared my updated thoughts.

So what’s first you might ask?

A topic near and dear to my heart: Leather.

In the past, I referred to it as Hetero Leather.

I don’t necessarily make that distinction now, and not because I think recognition of Gay and Lesbian Leather cultures detract and are somehow wrong. Just the opposite, in fact, I think recognition of the longstanding traditions and guiding principles are what will help us grow as Leatherfolk on a whole, and because of that, I’d like to think we’re all in this together, orientations are secondary.

I read SO MUCH trying to understand Leather, and it all led back to gay leathermen, and leatherwomen. I automatically assumed that as an (at the time) straight, CIS man there was no inlet for me into Leather culture. What a bunch of bullshit thinking that was.  Thanks to some amazing people and their wisdom I think much differently now.

I’ve spent the majority of my time since then getting to know Leathermen, Leatherwomen, Boy’s, Girls. and all manner of Leatherfolk. One overriding thing I have learned is that Leather is what you make it. Guided by service, respect, honesty, loyalty, integrity and being an open-minded student of life in general.

Leather isn’t about being gifted Leather to wear (although that’s awesome too.)

Leather isn’t about what genitals you have, or what genitals you like to stick your genitals into (or have stuck in you.)

Leather isn’t about status or personal gain.

Leather isn’t something that fits in a nice neat little box.

So, going forward here – what is Leather as far as I am concerned?

Well here is what I consider to be my Leather path.

At its core Leather has close ties to sex, rough Leathersex, S&M, all manner of deviant shit, which I love, however it’s about being unapologetic about loving these things. It is who we are, it’s about wearing whatever gets you hot, and (within limits) Fucking or playing exactly how you want. I Love Beating ass, bruising the hell out of it and listening to the whimpers when I decide to fuck it. End of story, if I find a partner who likes being on the receiving end, and we go make that happen that’s Leather, you need not apologize or feel guilty for any of it.

It’s about being of service, both to people, and to your community. Give back, be an ear for a friend, tell them they’re being an idiot if they need it, buy them a beer, or a place to crash if shit has gone south, teach someone a skill. Give your time to your community, Support local groups, go to fundraising events, offer some time to volunteer. Be of use – Master, slave, it doesn’t matter: The highest form of humbleness comes from being of service to someone or something worthy of your effort.

Respect everyone who deserves respect. From the most wealthy CEO to the bartender keeping you in good booze – We all end up in the same sized box. The true measure of a Leatherperson  is how you treat those who can do absolutely nothing for you. It can be as simple as a please and thank you to the kid at the front counter at McDonald’s, it’s the same please and thank you would give to the guy signing your cheques.

Be honest. Not only with the people you meet, be honest with yourself. Be honest about your strengths, your weaknesses. Be honest about every little part of yourself about who you are, who you want to be, and whether you are living a life that is authentically your own.

Be loyal to the people that deserve loyalty. I have Dot, our Leather family, and another house we are part of who have my implicit loyalty. All they have to do is ask, and if something is in my power it’s theirs. I would defend them to the ends of the earth because I trust they would do the same for me.

Integrity. This one is rather hard to quantify, integrity is different for everyone. Because I believe myself to be a person of integrity – I will do my utmost to conduct myself living as close to my morals, beliefs, and honor as a man of my word, because to me that is integrity.

I will never stop learning, never stop growing, stagnation is a slow death by doing nothing, Always better yourself, and move forward.

That is My Leather path.

In the end, it’s not about clothes or any one sexual orientation.

It’s about being unapologetically you, having a guiding set of principles, and living the fuck out of them every day.

So, here I am two and a half years later.

I have grown.

I have lived authentically.

I have evolved.

I have much still to learn and work on.

I have a Leather Path.

I hope you find yours if you are looking.

In Leather,

 

Syn.

Dear Brain – Please Shut The Fuck Up.

I have to admit sometimes it’s difficult for me to reconcile my reality with what my brain is telling me.

My little fae and I have settled into  a bit of a routine, Life has been busy lately. Little time to play, but our TPE is still strong.

I love all the time we’ve been getting together, but I do miss playing – I was/am more comfortable with my sadistic side, however in becoming so, I find I miss our sessions…. They seem to only happen when we travel to the other city for events, and even then Co-topping is what usually occurs.

Here is where the disconnect happens.

I’m at a loss for how to make things happen more organically – between work, kids visiting more than periodically, the need for sleep for both of us on off(ish) hours than the other, and the fact that I prefer play to be unplanned, leads to a difficult time making it happen.

Couple all of that, with the issues I’ve had accepting my Sadism in the past and my logical brain is wondering what the fuck is wrong with me.

I don’t know why these words fell out of my head, or what if anything the solution is, however here it is.

I plan to write more, as work now allows for it, but just a quick entry to let you know I’m still alive and moving somewhat.

 

Regards,

 

Syn.

Power Exchange, BDSM and Mental Illness: How We Cope.

There are certain things that I think about, quite a bit. Especially in terms of Power exchange, Chief among those is self care and mental well-being of my slave and any other s-type I am currently involved with or protecting.

Sure physicality is a big part of everything, and it’s fun, cathartic, leaves some pretty spectacular reminders for a while, and is the primary focus of many a BDSM relationship.

But.

That’s not where Power exchange REALLY shines.

As a Master there are other things that create and encompass the power exchange. Recently my slave has been in one of her “lows” it becomes difficult for her to summon the will to function within a normal headspace. Things like dragging ass at work, reluctance to get out of bed, low self image, and a constant need for reassurance that I do infact love her and she is worthy of it. There is more but I think you get the gist.

There are however things you can do.

So in a normal non power exchange relationship as well as a power exchange the most important thing you can do is identify what you’re dealing with, as my slave is rather private about her struggles I will leave her illness as hers to tell – however if you put 2 and 2 together from here, as well as entries on her blog you get a fairly clear picture.

So after diagnosis (professional help is important here), In addition to therapy and medication (if applicable), what can we as Masters/Dominants do ?

Largely the onus is on the slave to follow through with Masters orders – For me, the primary is for my slave to take care of my possessions to the best of her ability, and most cherished of those is she, herself. So the slave should learn what she can about her illness, coping strategies, properly adhering to medication schedules, and other forms of self care during issues. Even the slave recognizing the onset of a low, or other issues can go a long way in offsetting potential damage.

So what do I do when my slave hits a low ?

Well, I will admit I am not as rigid in the power exchange as I would be when she is at 100% – this is not to say the power exchange disappears, however I may do a bit extra to reassure her that everything is OK, and that I still love and value her and her service. Ensuring to remind her to eat, shower (the power of hot water is not to be underestimated), basics that might otherwise go neglected.

That said, I have been known to call her out on behavior that leans towards her lows, and knowing her well enough to push the issue when I have to. Structure is important to people with mental health issues, and not straying too far from routine can go a long way in dealing with/shortening episodes.

Now I should add that these particular coping methods are how I and my slave deal with mental illness in OUR dynamic.

That said something you should keep in mind is that dealing with mental illness can be incredibly stressful for the Master as well, and after an episode passes, I highly advise doing something FOR YOURSELF to depressurize, refocus and recharge, so that the power exchange can continue with as little disruption as possible. It can be just as draining for the Master as it can be for the slave, and as I mentioned, staying as close to routine or normal as you possibly can is in my opinion the best thing you can do for both parties.

In the end making sure that the Master keeps the slave accountable for their actions, because mental illness is not excuse for a lapse in deference or service – there should be consequences to actions no matter the circumstances. Educate yourself on the illness in question – BOTH of you. It is an excellent opportunity for essays,  formulating coping mechanisms, and strategy. Read blogs of people who have the same illness, medical journals, documentaries, learn voraciously, because knowledge is power.

In the end both parties need to work at maintenance, and do so together, which, is the key to success in any sort of authority exchange (if not vanilla) relationship.

***These are my thoughts and my experiences alone, your results, methods and experiences will likely be different but I do hope at the very least I may have given some insight and perhaps a starting point for other dynamics who find themselves in the same boat that we are in.***

 

Regards,

 

Syn.

Trust, Submission, and Leaps of Faith.

Trust is an odd thing, it takes a long time to build, but can be achieved in small measures with a leap of faith.  Some believe Trust is earned, and others still that trust should be given freely until it is time to distrust that person.

In the context of Power exchange and Dominance and submission, (as well as for my purposes speaking from the left side of the slash) I am going to  talk about a leap of faith.

**Please intersperse the respective power exchange identifiers with whatever you wish dynamic/gender (or non-gender) wise – for the sake of this writing  I will be using Master/slave in a male Master/female slave combination.

In a TPE there are two choices – Either the slave trusts her Master to work for her best interests or she does not.   This is not to say she can’t question if the need for clarification is strong, I encourage questions, because everything I do concerning those in my care has a very good reason.  If the word of the Master has been agreed upon as final, then arguing further after a definitive statement is Insolent and cause for either discipline, or if grievous enough termination of the relationship.

Now, at the beginning of any TPE, a Master should assume a learning curve and be somewhat lenient. A little more so if the slave is new or inexperienced.

That said:

The onus here is on the slave to trust her Master implicitly in that what he does or orders is with her best interests at heart.  If the slave wishes to earn some autonomy to make her own choices then showing good judgment in caring for her Masters property (herself and his other belongings) is the best way to do it. Many Masters wish to micromanage to a level of minutia, however many still do not wish to be burdened with choosing two outfits, two meals, or a haircut for he and his slave. I for one, don’t know a goddamn thing about female fashion – So I let my slave dress herself for the most part unless there is a particular outfit I want to see her in. However  she EARNED that right through smart and adult choices and measured reactions to situations.

Now the other side of the coin – If mentally the trust is there, then it should extend to all things, including the physicality of S&M play.

Some would argue this is mental as well, and I would agree wholeheartedly – however the slave must trust the Master to know when enough is enough – generally endorphin rush and subspace (slave space) can lead to the slave disregarding her physical limitations and end up taking more pain than is safe to handle. I have been told by many a masochist that the urge to take and take and take can outweigh the need for self preservation. The slave must trust that when the Master says no more, it is because he doesn’t want her to be unable to move, or sit, or function the rest of the week – a bedridden slave due to a severe beating will be unable to perform her duties, or carry out tasks, both special and mundane.

Finally trust leads to consequence.

Consequences for failing to trust ones Master can take many forms – one of which is punishment from her Master as I mentioned earlier.

Then there are the unintended consequences  – An example: The slave knows that she can ask for play from another Master (who may be adept at something her Master is not) and as a reward receive permission to do so.  So the slave wanders off to have her pussy tortured. Now bear in mind this is all with her Masters say so…. because he felt to reward her. You would also have to understand that should the Master require the use of his slave for sexual gratification, now her pussy is either unusable or painful enough that penetration causes issues, and As such she is unusable by her Master for that purpose for the next few days.  (this scenario becomes more evident if it is a slave or submissive who has to safeword due to pain).

Trust in your Sir to know your physical limitations sometimes better than you do, his JOB is to ensure you are healthy (mentally emotionally AND physically), happy and sound.  With that said the end game goal is to know how to achieve these things on your own, even if you are uncollard, or unowned – it just helps to have someone there to watch over you and ensure that if you fall of the path to these things you get right back on.

In the end Trust in a Power Exchange is something that At first requires a leap of faith to surrender control, however by constantly  trusting your Master more and more great things can be achieved, and massive growth for both partners is possible, along with the relationship.

 

Just a few things I’ve been rattling in my head, I could clarify more, however for now I just want the thoughts Out there.

 

Regards,

 

 

Syn