Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Reflections on Control, "Who is this all for, anyway?"

I wrote this post almost a year before I posted it. But it reflects the thinking that has been percolating over much of the time since then. It's not complete, but the themes are so bound up with what's actually been happening, that I thought it was worth including.
Since my beloved is out of town and I'm still partly in the wrong time zone, I indulged in a little fantasy this morning. And since I have this agreement with my beloved that I don't get to orgasm without her permission, I knew that this fantasy wasn't going to get me off. But for those of us who like this sort of thing, the excitement and the frustration are what it's all about.

I realized a couple of weeks ago that all of this is about me and not about her. Stated so baldly, this is a "DUH" kind of realization. But as with many such things, when one figures out how it applies to one's own life, it has more impact. It also has a lot to so with "female supremacy" (and the lack thereof), and the reason why that whole train of thought is so intrinsically inimical to what she and I actually believe - yet why it is so compelling for me. I hope/think that maybe I've gotten away from it because it's not a useful thing for me. YMMV.

Anyway, having realized that she "cares" about my orgasms only in the context or sense that she cares for me and wants to make me happy, and that my having to ask her for permission is a way to do that, I wondered if that would be OK or be "sufficient" to make something happen for me. As it turns out, it is, mostly because it makes me very conscious of my desire. And because it has made me conscious of my relationship to my desire - which is to say my feeling that I'm not entitled to my desire.

[A digression: I think this is related to the "power" issue in male-female relations in our sexualized society. E.g. when a woman dresses "provocatively", to me it reads as "I want you to desire me, but I know that, because of the way you're socialized - to be civil, respectful, etc - I don't have to worry about your desire. Unless I give you permission to interact with me, you'd be hassling me and I know you won't do that." In that context, the woman has all the power. I know this says much more about me than about the hypothetical woman, but that's how it reads to me.]

Anyway, that realization about my relationship to desire and how the explicit (between her and me) acknowledgment of the fact that I need her permission for that desire is satisfying, that led me to another thought: There are times when I need more control or more focus. The analogy that kicked this off was actually listening to Temple Granden talk about restraining animals, and (if I remember correctly) with her own peculiar history, how she realized that sometimes she (Granden) found that kind of restraint calming and reassuring. I realized that metaphorically (and who knows, perhaps physically which maybe is why I like bondage) that sometimes I need to be controlled more.

Those in more traditional D&S relationships refer to "protocol" - how the submissive in the relationship is required to act. They refer to "high protocol" and "low protocol" as to how constrained the submissive's actions are. So I thought, "What if what I need are 'high protocol' days?" While I know that this does nothing for my beloved (as indeed the whole orgasm control does nothing for her), but if we could structure it so that it didn't impinge on her life too badly, she would be willing to do this for me if I needed it.