Want to know how to clear a room? As a woman all I have to do is to explain the dynamic of my freely chosen romantic relationship. The result is variously:
Sometimes, it is all of the above.
Putting aside Acceptance and Envy for the moment, the usual result from the other quarters generally precedes something like “damage control”. Obviously, I must be wholly uneducated about the plight of womanhood throughout the ages, feminism, my “rights”, and all the “empowering” alternatives out there.
For example, an exceptionally open-minded person might suggest that I need to start dominating men sexually and thereby discover my “inner goddess”.
How about this? What if I’m the kind of “goddess” who likes being “degraded”? Am I not of sufficient adult agency to make that choice?
Hear me out here. What if I’m the Persephone-type of goddess who likes spending half the year doing the nasty with the God of the underworld, emerging unscathed to soak up the sun and soothe my hysterical Mom who starts madly making flowers bloom in her excitement and relief, for the other half?
As for the historical mindset of women like me, I honestly don’t know. It is not my area of expertise. Furthermore, I wouldn’t imagine that it would be particularly well-received throughout the modern age, except of course in the case of erotica staged and enacted by well-compensated professionals or plucky exhibitionist amateurs, or as “legitimate” punishment for heresy such as the horrible things that occurred in the Inquisition, or as civil punishment as described in places like this: http://www.history-of-germany.com/?scid=rothenburg_torture&.
From what I can gather, masochism may be acceptable albeit derided in men but wholly unacceptable in women except within minority factions of supposedly misogynistic religious orders as evidenced by the outrage of fine Muslim women at the existence of “The Obedient Wives Club“. It upsets the balance of society. A known masochist woman is about as welcome at a modern Western dinner party as a nymphomaniac—depends on the dinner party. Of course a lovely young woman given to Standing and Modeling (S&M) is welcome anywhere. It turns out, to many women, BDSM is merely a fashion statement.
I understand that my desires are not normal in a society which fetishizes “the sacred feminine.” I believe that whereas the connection to mother is a primal one that forms the basis of all future primal attractions, mothers are becoming scarce in children’s lives as more mothers take after careers. Whereas maternity leave is an option for many, the price paid in terms of career ambition is costly. Scarcity elevates value. Perversely, feminism has made a woman who likes cooking, cleaning, serving, and otherwise making a man feel like a king a valuable commodity. Hooray for me.
Meanwhile, the monotheistic traditions degrade the feminine which only serves to make the yearning for the sacred feminine more pronounced—with the exception of some parts of Judaism which do indeed celebrate the feminine side of God and the joining of masculine with feminine. Combine that degradation with “victim culture,” the fetishization of the feminine victim as in need of protection and feats of valor, and the deep magnetism to the sacred feminine becomes overriding. Even that is not the end of it because as society and the human condition degrades under conditions of scarcity of nonrenewable resources, the fetishization of children and the feminine is the last “sacred” as a tool of advertisers, beggars, and any cause celeb whatsoever (“for the children!”) with the female body a potent marketing tool. Why is it any wonder that some of us would be repelled by this excess and desire a reprieve from it—sexually, emotionally, spiritually, and romantically?
Part of the stigma of female masochism has got to be the imbalanced view of domestic abuse as something that men do to women. However, with me in any case, there is a broad distinction between raw, primal, intimate dominance and a man out of control with rage having experienced both situations many times as a consequence of my forced adventurousness. There’s nothing quite like caring, responsible, intimate sadomasochism as being both invigorating and soothing. To be the absolute center of attention is a heady experience that “vanilla” just can’t touch. I get to live out a fair number of romance novels. It is an erotic experience that is impossible to quantify even if practices can be from tame to extreme along with risk and therefore highly individual as negotiated between risk-aware consenting adults.
As a former teenaged runaway, I rebelled against my family by—at first subconsciously—embracing masculinity in all of its forms. I was deprived of a father figure growing up, as it were. My underemployed father spent more energy sexually, physically, and emotionally abusing his daughters as some sort of compensation for the abuse that was put on him (by his parents) than actually being a contributing member of society. He performed this abuse not as some worldly, powerful alpha man, but as a social loser who finally had humans weaker than him under “his” own roof (paid for by his abusive parents and then by my histrionic, narcissistic mother who went off to work helping other people’s children while neglecting her own and meanwhile feathering her own nest).
As horrible as my childhood was on so many levels and as crude and sadistic the attentions of my father, his actions did not contribute to the enrichment of his own environment—quite the contary—and therefore, perversely, contributed to his own misery. In other words, he was himself a masochist, desperately searching for validation of his own need to punish himself. He put me in that uncomfortable role as his “validator” when I was supposed to be a child (and still does) and for that I choose to not be the Dominatrix it would seem that most facets of society demand that I be. I choose to not let materialism define the path of my heart. I choose instead to be a sex slave—which, at my age (52)—is quite a mean feat! You, the reader, will hopefully forgive my hubris when properly I should be repentant and ashamed. However, since you the reader are not my Dominant, I have complete carte blanche to be proud and in-your-face.
As for the masochism part of me, that was clearly a result of the early “training” I suffered under my father—and older sister who, incidentally, took the abuse to a more intense sexual and sensation-driven level.
Like any gay person can tell you, my sexuality is part of what makes me me. Shaming me, on the other hand, is not something I countenance except from someone I am intimate with and trust. In other words, BDSM has made me more empowered and less likely to take any nonconsensual abuse (a redundancy) lying down.
Back to the sacred feminine: In a society which requires marriage as a construct of social stability, pretty much any guy can find himself his own little goddess to honor and protect until death do they part. If he were to abuse her, however, there would be Hell to pay–from the law, society, other men, etc.
As for her, well, here’s how one columnist in 1937 looks at a woman who would allow any sort of abuse to occur: “A lovelorn female, with a masochistic turn would rather receive a good sock in the jaw than a box of orchids.” Here’s the full column: Source.
In our enlightened age however, the theoretical woman described in the column would be more likely to be referred to as a “sufferer of Battered Wife Syndrome” which apparently is a license to murder: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battered_woman_defense.
For the record, I’d rather get a well-placed slap to the face by an intimate and well-vetted partner than to be put on a pedestal. Like any healthy relationship, my happiness is very important to my Dominant and I hope it goes without saying that I live for his approval. He likes it when I’m happy and my job is to make him happy. I love my job.
Here’s part of what Wikipedia has to say on both sadism and masochism a.k.a. sadomasochism:
Sadomasochism is not considered a clinical paraphilia unless such practices lead to clinically significant distress or impairment for a diagnosis. Similarly, sexual sadism within the context of mutual consent should not be mistaken for acts of sexual violence or aggression.
Of course, the internet and Fifty Shades of Gray add additional wrinkles to the phenomenon.
FetLife is a fetish and BDSM social networking site in which Caprizchka as an entity was born about three years ago. Although FetLife is free to users, I chose to become a paid member out of appreciation for meeting my Dominant there. I’ve been out and proud in the public BDSM scene for over 20 years albeit that doesn’t comprise my entire experience with BDSM practices which started at a much younger age as I’ve intimated above. Right or wrong, well or sick, it is how I’m wired. Naturally, I thought that FetLife would be a warm and welcoming place for the likes of someone like me. I was wrong! I get hit with hate mail on a regular basis! But hey, it’s only the internet, and I’m a big girl.
In addition to profiles which contain photos and writing, and even videos, there are forums, known as “groups” in which one can discuss pretty well anything including mundane topics of the day. If the point of groups is to connect with like-minded individuals, the topics discussed in these groups tend to be issues of ethics, morality, philosophy, and politics as ways of basically strutting our highly-socially-desirable or at least rhetorically-gifted stuff. Depending on the language used, it is fairly easy to ascertain who has finished high school or not and who has gone on to higher education. Since education is the moral guidepost of a secular society, respondents tend to compete on that basis but without going so far as to reveal vanilla-world credentials and thereby “out” themselves to the entire FetLife community, their friends, and neighbors, etc.
Since BDSM is largely about trust, it would seem obvious that desirable partners are somehow thought of as trustworthy.
However, as an atmosphere of acceptance and tolerance for varying points of view, the FetLife groups fall short. Yours truly is regularly a target of the first four reactions listed at the top of this post to my existence: an anti-feminist, submissive, masochist, heterosexual female in service to a Dominant heterosexual man in an overtly open relationship; and less so of the second two. However, not only do I have a fairly thick hide, metaphorically speaking, I feel that it is partly my duty to assist in making FetLife safer for others like me who are perhaps not quite so confident and in-your-face as I am. In short, I have broad shoulders to bear young women into the scene who do not want to be targets of the man-hating harpies and losers who want to blame somebody for their own unhappiness.
The subtext for all the rage and invective that comes in my direction, in my opinion, is that so many feminist women are angry that Prince Charming Sadist or Prince Charming Masochist didn’t come to give them the happily-ever-after that they deserved simply by being submissive starfishes bleating “do me” or obedient fashion plates bearing whips. Hell hath no fury like a female sadomasochist scorned!
Since society does plenty of scorning already, why add to it? Sour grapes, of course. Why don’t older, bitter submissive men similarly scorn young submissive men? Because, what’s the use? Whereas there are plenty of sadistic white knights out there ensuring that they are considered to be the “safe” Dominants of record thereby monopolizing the market of submissive feminist ingenues. It’s not rocket science really figuring out the gender and age dynamics that are rarely voiced and that simply add to a more dimensional “high school” atmosphere of sexual and social competition.
By the way, I think that feminist Dominant male and feminist submissive female are oxymorons, with anti-feminists being truer to the integrity of their dynamic—whatever it may be—because they are not poisoned with illogical ideology.
Due to my prolific posting from the standpoint of an anti-feminist woman who is a heterosexual submissive to a Dominant man, with clearly both maturity and thoughtfulness in my rhetorical command, I tend to attract people to me who desire the protection my overlarge profile provides. These include shy, young, submissive women trying to get the bitter old harpies off their backs, and anti-feminist men of all stripes who want to know how they can approach women without getting tarred as “abusive” by the old biddies and hysterics of all ages. These last include Dominant men who are tired of being tarred as villains in an atmosphere that should welcome them considering their rarity in a society that has basically made their conduct illegal in many places. Dominant men, however, who describe themselves as “feminist” and are otherwise doling out chivalry are not targets of the same invective.
How does a Dominant man align with feminism? Probably a case of cognitive-dissonance meets practiced appeal to one’s intended quarry–the female feminist submissive. How does a submissive female align with feminism? Probably a case of having one’s cake and eating it too as well as a defensive mechanism against the abuse which any sort of masochistic person is more likely to encounter simply by virtue of being less adverse to risk. If testosterone has been found to increase one’s tolerance to risk, the female submissive who seeks her own punishment is a high-testosterone (a healthy) creature with a high sex drive in comparison to her more risk-adverse sisters who get their masochism on by reading hot romance novels.
Of course, a Dominant man in today’s social climate would also have to have a huge tolerance for risk being that “the loaded gun” (the false rape accusation) is that much more lethal in the hands of a masochist woman.
I herewith unload mine.