Friday, August 4, 2017

Friday stuff. Yeah, good title.

Some comments showed up today on Lady Grey's blog that kind of set me off a little bit.  I read them and just thought "wow, this person is full of shit and doesn't get it."  A lot of the words actually played into part of the clashes that my last entry talked about.  When I actually dissected their jumbled mess of grammatical errors and disorganized thoughts, the problem became abundantly clear.

I have since decided not to reply to them as I would prefer not to dive into the mud with such an individual. 

It seems that in the past few years the amount of binary thinking has increased, so much to the point where it has become the standard.  Right/wrong.  Yes/no.  With us/against us.  You see it in politics all the time.  I've been in BDSM long enough to no longer be naive about believing people involved in it to be open-minded.  However, binary thinking is terrifying. 

Extremes.  This goes against the bell-curve.  Most people fall towards the CENTER, not to the extreme ends.  Viewing through extremes tends to falsely pull people in directions because they feel they have to pick a side.

Easy answers.  Since when do difficult and complicated questions have easy answers?  True/False answers don't work all that well for Essay Questions.  It also gives people a false sense of knowledge when they can simply memorize the "correct responses" without giving it a modicum of thought.  The end result is that you find a slew of people who rattle off cliches that will flat out contradict one another. 

False moral superiority.  Is it wrong to steal?  Yes.  Is it wrong to steal food from someone who has excess in order to feed a child that is starving to death?  If you can blurt out a yes/no answer to this question without asking a dozen other questions to gain understanding of the situation, then I wish I was you.  When things are difficult and complicated you SHOULD agonize over any answer other than "I don't know."  "In some cases yes, in other cases no," is frequently the most correct answer to any question, and that is anything but binary.  Life is easier to have an answer for everything and have that answer be as simply as possible.  Those who have that easy answer generally look down upon those who have... a different answer. 

While there are thousands of dangers I could list of this type of thinking but I don't plan to cover them all.  I will talk about one more that is something that I have been baited into several times.

When I read a statement that only considers one of the two options and wish to contest it, the natural response is to provide evidence where the opposite is true.  This in turn makes the cases involved look like they are in fact debating the binary options. 

My last post most likely painted my attitude towards service to be one that I only want when feeling submissive.  That is not the case at all but such is the dangers of confronting the topic of "submissive all the time." 

Here is a better illustration of how I would look at my own view on submissive mental space and service.

-As my vanilla self, I rationally know that I want to serve and be pleasing to my Domme all the time.  There are days where this flows naturally with my mood.  There are days where I'm not feeling as well and the rational understanding is there but the feelings are half-hearted.  There are days when I'm not feeling well at all and serving is something I really would rather not do right now, but I still will, probably with reluctance.  There may be days occasional days where I feel so wrecked that I don't want to serve and may resist.  Basically, I have the normal gambit of feeling good, ok, meh, and terrible, with plenty of variations in between. 

-As my submissive self, I rationally know that I want to serve and be pleasing to my Domme all the time.  I serve happily with plenty of self-motivation to perform my role.  Injecting some fear into the mix will shift that to serving frantically and desperately, with external motivation in spades.

By confronting this idea it often requires establishing a firm stance in the opposite.  That isn't an ideal way of dealing with it either.  There are endless variations and in-betweens. 

Why I am on this topic has to do with reading some statements about how subs are conditioned and then it is not consensual, and things are either "this way" or loving.  The person of course had to ensure that we know they are in an FLR.  Like seriously?  It's like throwing that banner up tends to signify "douche bag," and it is why I have come to loathe the term so much.

The first aspect is the notion of something being consensual OR conditioned.  Can't it be both?  Can one not consent to be conditioned?  Once conditioned, is that no longer them?

The other aspect is the notion that something is either cruel OR loving.  Can't it be both?  If both parties enjoy cruel, doesn't that make cruelty a way of showing love?

I don't know, I guess I'm just severely tired of this game and I can't see any way that it benefits the world at large or most individuals. 

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Late Night Thoughts on submission

(I wrote this late last night but my internet went down)

To be honest, I'm not sure how much longer I will be blogging for.  The vibe isn't there anymore.  I love to read, write, and discuss ideas, but I don't feel like my ideas are applicable or representative anymore in today's environment.

As those who have been long-time readers know, I draw a lot of inspiration from outside sources.  Reading other blogs.  Discussion groups and forums.  Random things.  Comments.  Emails.  I've honestly been spending more time reading on Wordpress than on Blogger lately as it's just more active.  I've also been reading a lot more F/m blogs and interacting with dominants and submissives of both genders in the past couple of months.

There are a number of recurring views that keep surfacing and they continue to throw me for a loop.  Mostly because they feel very incomplete... or inaccurate... or both... or like a hybrid mish-mash of ideas out there.  When it comes to Femdom there have always sort of been two roads to travel.  The more common one when I was getting started was the consensual BDSM route and that path had the potential to evolve into 24/7 lifestyle D/s, TPE, and the like in its most extreme forms.  The other path was what I see as the predecessor to the "current" use of the term FLR, namely from authors such as Elise Sutton, Georgeann Cross, Lady Misato, and the like (back when I first discovered this side of things the term FLR wasn't yet in use).  For ease, I will refer to them as the BDSM path and the FLR path.

These schools of thought are quite different on a fundamental level.  The BDSM path was focused on consent, informed decision-making, mutual pleasure, compatible fits, respecting negotiated limits, and the like.  While things could and frequently would evolve into a much more intense state of D/s, this was known to be in the minority of Femdom relationships.

The FLR path was originally targeted at vanilla women.  It frequently talked about using sexual control and manipulation techniques to "enslave" a male, correct and modify his behavior, "train" him to perform chores and service, and so on, without him even knowing it.  Find out his secret desires and exploit them.  Make him addicted to her and she can continuously dangle the carrot and steer him however she pleases.  Do this long enough and he may be reduced to a life of servitude.

If you go back 10+ years, the BDSM crowd found this approach rather appalling.  However, there has always been a shortage of available Dommes to single subs and the FLR approach was a much much much easier "sell" to a vanilla partner.  If you have a vivid imagination you can probably picture Billy Mays shouting on an infomercial "Take control!  He'll mow the lawn!  He'll do the laundry!  He'll pee sitting down!  With just three easy steps you'll have him wrapped around your little finger and going down on you for hours on end!"

In a lot of ways this solved the confidence problem.  It removed the notion of "I have to be a leather-clad dominatrix" and replaced it with "I do what I want."  I don't see anything wrong with this.  I think in a lot of ways that is how Femdom should be.   It's really weird though because it feels like the worlds have merged but not in a clean way.  The BDSM-path was always very big upon responsibility, looking out for a sub's well-being, and the like.  There was an understanding of the sub's cycles, when aftercare was necessary, and their conflicting emotional states that would regularly arise. What I am gathering now is a trend in thinking of "a sub shouldn't need that."  That turns my world upside down.

I would probably be able to groove with it more easily if not for the fact that most Femdom blogs I read that allude to this tend to be unhappy.  In the not unhappy cases, when I read them I can picture Billy Mays shouting the words at me.   All in all I tend to struggle to differentiate between "a sub shouldn't need that" and "I don't want to have to do that."

This leads me to the second half.  Interacting with a number of subs lately I am finding a striking number of subs that claim to be submissive all the time.  I'm like, wow, really?  Back in the day they used to call those people doormats.  It doesn't take long to realize after hearing them complain and talk about the things that they hate, all the limits that they have, how inflexible they are on certain things, and so on, that they aren't submissive all the time, they have just convinced themselves of that.  Cue Billy Mays.  I even find this happening a lot from brand new subs that discovered the lifestyle two weeks ago.  "I don't need to learn anything because I love to please."  Problem solved, guaranteed success.  Yes, I'm vomiting sarcasm right now as I try to picture someone actually being submissive all the time.  There are people that are neat freaks, those that like to stay busy, those that like to be helpful, useful, pleasing, and so on, but I don't equate those qualities as being submissive.  To me, submissive means that you submit to the will of another.  That is, you disempower yourself and allow someone else to hold power over you.

I am an opinionated son of a bitch.  I rant and rave.  I am passionate about a hell of a lot of things.  I fight for what I believe in.  I make sure to learn enough about something before trying to argue for (or against) it. I am fine stating it outright, I am not submissive all the time.  I do not submit to just anyone.  I believe my submission has value.  When I submit I offer all of myself.  I only submit to someone that is special and dear to my heart, that I trust, respect, and love deeply.

The twist comes in that this creates a dual persona.  I have the version of myself that I show to the world, lean on in times of crisis, use for problem solving, and dealing with humanity in general.  Then there is my submissive side: romantic, passionate, vulnerable, sensitive, devoted, and sincere.  I guard this side of myself from the world.  I show it only to someone that is very special to me.

The problem with duality is that it is one or the other.  I am my alpha self OR I am my submissive self.  While my alpha self may still exert politeness, courtesy, and manners, there is a distinct difference between choosing to do something and NEEDING to do something.  To feel submissive is a need of mine.  If it wasn't a need I would have abandoned it long ago because life is a lot more difficult this way.  I consider my submissive side to be the best parts of me.  While my alpha side may reluctantly go along with something, my submissive side is excited and eager to do the same thing.

It is a binary switch that is set to either alpha or sub.

For years I felt this was the common way about most male subs.  We have one face we show in public and the submissive face we save for behind closed doors.  One of the major flaws of this design is that the sub can't always control where the switch is set.  While it's possible to pop into alpha mode as needed, it isn't always as easy to switch back into sub mode.  Thankfully, dominance tends to work quite well for flipping the switch to sub mode.   I always sort of felt that most people saw things this way.

I don't know.  If not for a handful of people that have continued to dialog with me on these views I would probably feel like a stranger in a strange land.

Wanna buy some Mighty Putty?