Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Umm. Control Issues?

That's the first thing I think about when discussing bdsm. Bondage. Dominance. Sado-masochism. Ummm. EWWWW. This isn't something that appeals to me. I grimace if I see it portrayed in movies and, unless it's handled very well, I don't love it in books. Don't get me wrong. I write erotica but I prefer stories that portray a couple as equal, loving partners. A little game-playing is okay. I mean, if the hero has a stash of ties and wants to do a little "tie me up, tie me down" stuff, that's no big deal. I have no problems with light spanking either. The heroine and hero know it's not about total domination but about spicing up their sex life and having some fun.

I just finished writing a story about a woman who was an absolute control freak. She refused to let herself be vulnerable enough to trust. The hero plays a few games with her in an effort to break down that iron-hard wall. It worked out for my heroine because she learned that it was okay to not be "perfect" and it was okay to let her guard down and allow someone else into her life. This is about as bdsm as I get. Just enough to make a point.

It's the extremes that bother me. The chains, whips, and ball gags throw me for a loop. Don't know what is so sexy about a woman or man on their knees begging for love or respect or whatever. Sex shouldn't be about dominance. It should be about love, caring, and affection. It should be about giving and receiving pleasure and that's, to me, the bottom line. Anything that causes another pain borders on abuse and doesn't ring my bells.


  1. Hear hear!

    As for light bondage, I'll share a bit of personal experience: There is something incredibly relaxing and (believe it or not) liberating about being tied. Try it sometime when you're really stressed and your to-do list keeps running through your head, and your whole system is saying "Go! Go! Go!"

    Just sayin'. TMI?

  2. *Cheers*

    That is the clearest explanation so far and I totally love it. There are times I can "see" it working in a book but it always gives me pause because I think so differently than the all out BDSM stuff. It's almost like reading horror, enjoying the horror story for itself, but not wanting the crazy dude with the knife to leap out at me.

  3. I"m on pretty much the same wavelength I think. Games are fun. I've written light bondage into several of my books. My favorite is when a heroiine uses a pair of plastic cuffs on the gargoyle hero. Of course he can break them--it's just for fun. But the heavy-duty lifestyle stuff? That's a whole nuther world.

  4. I suspect that the heavy-duty stuff serves a deep need in both the dom and the sub. If so, then they are welcome to it. I've read some very well done books. I've also read some that were a major squick for me.

    Unless we're totally into the scene, I suspect that for most of us, bondage lite is as far as we can comfortably go--even in our reading.

  5. I'd agree with you on that last point, Anny, if Ellora's Cave weren't well stocked with BDSM stories, which by their blurbs appear to be pretty heavy duty. And they do differentiate between light bondage and BDSM.

    So they must sell pretty well, or EC wouldn't publish them.

  6. Hey all,
    The BDSM books sell well because there are ALOT of people involved in the Lifestyle. And many more who fantasize about it but don't act on their fantasies.
    I agree with all of your comments and a person living the Lifestyle would call us "Vanilla", meaning we're into traditional sexual relationships. The BSDM writer's workshop I took went into the psyche of those heavy into the Lifestyle. People who live it outside of the bedroom. The interesting thing is, they acknowledge their choices are not the norm and wink about the deviance. I commented at one point to the instructor that his descriptions of his motivations and sexual tendencies seemed like "therapy". He agreed and said it was valid. Many people in the Lifestyle see their sexual acts/scenes as a way to work through problems and better themselves, grow. It's different, but over the course of the workshop, I understood their motivations better. I still don't think pain and dominance/submission is sexy, but I have a more open-minded acceptance of their choices. The workshop instructor and his Domme were so likable and open. I think the obvious consensual nature of their relationship helped.
    Oh, and it's not just whips and ball gags. Try knives, floggers, chains. It goes on. Waay on.

  7. Knives???? EEEK. See? That's just too much for my tastes but that's the thing. What's right for one couple isn't necessarily right for another.

    Love the term Bondage Lite. Sounds like a diet soft drink doesn't it?

  8. Great Post, Regina and I'd have to say I'm pretty much on the same page with you. :D The hardcore stuff, just doesn't do it for me.

  9. I think on the same lines as well. Sex is indeed not about dominance. If anything, it is just the opposite in fact!. sex is not about ego, it is about egolessness!


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