New post! Charles takes down a horrible Psychology Today article with a silly name:
“Is Your Lover a Pervert?”
I certainly hope so! Because if she’s not we’re gonna run into some sexual roadblocks pretty damn quick, yes we are. In the world I live in, that most of the people I know live in, “pervert” just doesn’t carry weight as a term of abuse anymore. It’s affectionate, cuddly, a kinda-cute reminder that we used to be weirdoes, but now there are thousands of us and we have communities and we’re weird together and no one minds the Bollocks.
You should go read it!
(Finally) a new GMP post!
It’s called “Sex and Snuff: What Dying Twice Taught Me About Eroticized Death” and it’s about Olivia’s experience doing BDSM faux-snuff porn. It’s kind of heavy.
It was trapped for months in editing hell, but it’s finally free!
New GMP post!
Olivia wrote this one. It’s about those times when young, dominant-identified people show up in BDSM communities and are reviled. Community members mock them, saying things like “buying a flogger doesn’t make you a dom,” or “You’re eighteen? You can’t be a master.”
Olivia wanted to explore this attitude and talk about why she disagrees.
In December while visiting his family for the holidays, Rake and I stopped by the Leather Archives and Museum in Chicago. The LA&M is a small, but scrupulously kept museum nestled in with a bunch of apartment complexes. The museum is identifiable by its sign bearing a gigantic boot, as well the resemblance of the “&M” in its name to the “&M” of “S&M.” It flags so subtly that I might actually be imagining it.
The man behind the counter let us both in at student price because I had my university ID. On a cold weekday afternoon days after Christmas, we pretty much had the museum to ourselves. We stayed until close. Their library has an encyclopedic selection of trashy, gay, BDSM-flavored porn novellas from the seventies. (Rake’s Note: Also, they had literally every notable nonfiction book on BDSM since ever. This fact is less important.)
While we were there, though, we realized something: the BDSM community hasn’t really found its rhetorical niche. We don’t yet know how to talk about ourselves in a way that makes us sound good to the rest of the world. I think that GLBT communities have found their niche in a focus on romantic love. Most people can identify with that, so it works.
Us, though? The best we have is “safe, sane, and consensual” and I think that sounds a bit like the lady protesting too much. We need something that makes us sound positive, not merely… um… not horrific.
The problem here is sadists and other d-types.
The best idea I’ve come up with so far is basically an ad campaign. The premise would be “my kink makes me feel.” It wouldn’t be dissimilar from the “X is my anti-drug” campaign of the early ’00s in that it would focus on personal experiences, stories, and individuals. I think it would be easy for an s-type to talk about how peaceful, happy, satisfied, strong, or fulfilled zir participation in BDSM makes zir feel without too much trouble. The moment, though, that a d-type shows up to talk about how powerful, strong, or in control kink makes zir feel, it’s gonna get weird. The general public is gonna look at that and think it’s fucked up. It’s going to present a depiction of our real-life, probably-nice-people, consensual sadists as being in line with depictions of fictional monsters.
This is a rhetorical problem that I’ve been puzzling over for months, but don’t know how to solve. It’s especially difficult given how often I’ve heard avowed sadists talk about how they, personally, had to learn to indulge in sadism and learn to trust in their partner’s consent. If in a culture where someone can say “Yes, please do hit me, I’d really like it and it’d get me off,” it’s still necessary to learn how to comfortably say yes to that request, I’m not sure how we can get anyone else to accept that behavior.
I hate to make a post that just points out a problem without suggesting any solutions, especially when my thoughts fall so short of being satisfactory. I do think it’s an interesting problem, though. I’d like to talk much more about it. If you’ve got ideas about this, could you let me know?
 “D-type” is a genetic term for dominants, tops, sadists, mistresses, owners, etc. The person who, in general, is holding the flogger, or performing the actions. An “s-type” is the opposite. They’re the submissive, bottom, masochist, slave, property, etc. who, in general, are the people getting hit or being performed upon.
On this day last year, Rake and I decided that we were going to give dating a try. Our relationship had, in the past couple of weeks between then and when we first met at a munch exploded hilariously and somewhat consumingly from people who took a shine to each other at a munch, to BDSM play partners and movie-watching buddies, to people who had fantastic chemistry and actually wanted something more from their relationship with each other.
We had a whirlwind summer romance.
We spent almost all of our time together. I practically moved out of the air-conditioned house I was living in to stay in his incredibly, stickily, horribly hot studio apartment. Our first date was a 24+ hour marathon session involving pho, a misunderstanding that ended in me playing earlier than I expected to at the home of a near-stranger (turns out, sometimes that gets you safe, happy long-term relationships and not sexual assault), a Tollywood movie, Japanese cyber-feminist Blade Runner pornography, comparing notes on Gaspar Noe’s Enter the Void, Thai sandwiches, rope, tears, a craft knife, my flesh, and a single needle. Neither of us had meant for it to last so long, but once we started we just couldn’t stop. There’s a way in which that first date has really set the pace for the rest of the relationship.
There were a lot of firsts for me on that titanic, hilarious behemoth of a first date. It was my first time playing with someone in Portland. It was my first time playing with a play partner that I’d deliberately sought out for that purpose. It was my first time taking a punch, my first time receiving an orgasm from someone who wasn’t my romantic partner, the first time I really had to start coming to grips with the way I cry in scene. It was also my first experience with needle play. I’ll always remember that needle because I was scared of it, but wanted to try. I told him and he said something like,
“How about this? Let’s do one needle. Just one. If you hate it, you’ll have tried it and you’ll know what it’s like and we’ll only do one. If you love it, we’ll only do one and you’ll have tried it and you’ll know what it’s like.”
And that won me over. You might even say that it won me over permanently. That moment was extremely important for me. He urged me into doing something I’d never tried before, something that frightened me, but in a way that felt very safe and pressure free. That attitude is one he’s maintained for the duration of our relationship. We’ve continued to try new things together and, since that first date, I’ve had many more firsts with him and have regretted none of them.
Perhaps the one that’s the most important, though, is that my relationship with Rake is my first proper, negotiated power exchange relationship. In two months, I’ll have been doing power exchange every hour of every day for three hundred and sixty-five days.
Aaand there I go, stepping out of closets again. This fact about your editors is not one that we’ve precisely been avoiding, but it is one that we’ve chosen to defer talking about because it is, almost undoubtedly, the weirdest thing about us. That’s right, your Humble Editors, sincere feminists, gender warriors, are engaged in a relationship where they deliberately and playfully reproduce inequalities between a man and a woman. We do this because it makes for us the best relationship we can have.
In later posts, when we get around to them, we’ll discuss why this is what we do and why it works for us. On this, however, the occasion of our first anniversary, I’m just going to baldly make the admission. We will talk about this more later. We’ve discussed it and have unanimously decided that this blog about gender, sex and kink simply isn’t enough about sex and kink. For now, though, let me just set the precedent and say that 24/7 power exchange is a thing that we do, and it makes us very, very happy.
This year has helped me to become a better person, someone closer to the human I want to be. We’ve helped each other to become smarter, sharper feminists. When I went back to school last fall, both of us worried about what would happen to our relationship. Fifty miles of physical distance and my senior year work load wasn’t enough to stop us, though. We’ve persevered. We’ve moved in together. We’ve started a blog. Today, we’re going to make a pie.
What we have is what we want.
So, happy anniversary, Rake, my boss, my partner in crime. Let’s fuck some shit up.
 For those of you unfamiliar, a munch is an almost entirely social, low-key, gathering of kinksters, usually held in a public place. Most people seeking to join a community go to munches to establish themselves and meet new people.
 Again, for the unfamiliar, needle play is generally where someone sticks a generally fairly high-gauge (ours are 22g) sterile medical needles into someone else along the surface of the skin. This is not usually vertical like an injection, but horizontal, like a piercing. You can do all sorts of things to them while they’re in and then you take them out.
1. Punch him in the chest. Studies that we gesture at vaguely and never cite show that this increases blood flow, which can really heat up that “special time of night.”
2. Ok, alright. Seriously, I don’t know why we have to say this aloud but: you can do other stuff while having oral pleasantries. Hum, or like touch him anywhere that feels good while also totally fellating your mister-guy-boyfriend-FWB-lifemate. What a totally rad move, right?
3. When your BF is brushing his teeth, sneak up behind him and stroke him on the penis. Men’s libidos are raging out of control in the morning according to some divination we did in the office last Thursday, and who hasn’t wanted to enter their partner and have their way with them with a mouthful of toothpaste? Clean, yet dirrrty.
4. Eat something. Like, literally, anything. Experts agree that food contains nutrients which are key to biological processes. And is there anything better for turning up the heat with your dude-man-fella-guy than fully-functioning organs metabolizing energy to fuel that sexy-sex-romp-a-loo? No.
5. Spice things up tonight by just straight up grabbing your BF-dudebro-man on the testicles. The sudden shock of unnegotiated dominance will make him buck with lust, confusion, and previously repressed memories of the time a neighborhood dog bit him in his youth and he had to get stitches! Adrenaline!
6. Wear a red towel after your shower. Scientists have scienced that the color red, cleaning yourself, and things touching your body something something sexy something something I don’t even care anymore.
7. Paint a picture of breasts on your “girls.” And on each of those girls, yet more bazingas. Experts we talked to over lattes one time told us that guys-males-bros are way visual, and also that they’re major fans of Inception. Trust us, he’ll “have to go deeper.” Sexpun.