taiWelcome! I’m Tai Scarlet Kulystin, the creatrix of Purveyor of Pleasure. I am a somatic sexuality educator, occultist, professional harlot, and gender & relationships coach. This blog is my personal exploration of gender, sexuality, spirituality, kink, and the pitfalls of an overanalytical nature.

I identify as a queer fat genderqueer polyamorous switch and prefer the pronouns ne/nem/nir or they/them. I spend a lot of my time thinking about sacred sexuality, sacred kink, relationships, the body, queer theory, depth psychology, erotic psychology, sexological bodywork, and so much more. I'm in a long-term live-in relationship with my partner Onyx, and I also have a few other relationships and lovers.
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Archive for the ‘Personal’


Amazing Weekends

The last three weekends have been pretty spectacular, really ever since I got back to Seattle things have been, but that’s beside the point. As I have written about, three weekends ago we played with Terra and Storax and saw Tristan Taormino. The last two weekends have been sex blogger filled and exceptionally fun. I briefly mentioned these as upcoming on my events list post, but now they have happened!

Two weekends ago Amber and Em made their way up to us. I made my famed curry bake at Amber’s request and she gave me a bike which she doesn’t use anymore! It needs a little bit of fixing up before I can actually ride it, but that fixing up should be cheaper than getting a new one, so I’m extremely happy with how that worked out.

There was much cat petting game playing, and fun that was had. Next time we’ll have more of a structured outing in mind, I think, what happens when four easygoing people go out is that no one makes solid decisions! It was amusing, really. They brought two Wii controllers with them so the four of us played quite a bit of Mario Kart, a game Onyx and I have become rather addicted to (it’s not all sex and relationship babble here all the time). When we first got our Wii and tweeted about it both Amber and Em enthusiastically told us that they love Mario Kart so we all knew we would play it when they got up here.

We all went first to Cupcake Royale and shared a six-pack of delicious cupcakes before heading to one of our favorite dive bars slash mexican places Bimbos Cantina for some drinks and, eventually, nachos. It was definitely a delicious food-filled evening. After a bit of indecisive wandering in the sprinkling rain we headed back to our place for more Mario Kart. They were both amazingly adorable the entire time and I loved meeting them. After breakfast the next morning they were on their way back home.

Our exciting blogger meet-ups didn’t stop with them.

Last Saturday Onyx and I had the pleasure of going out with a group of other sex bloggers: Nadia West, CoyPink, Alec (CoyPink’s husband), Kyle, and Roxy. Nadia was visiting from her side of the country (she already wrote about her weekend here. ) and Roxy was up visiting Kyle, it just so happened they would be here at the same time so we all could go out together. We had met CoyPink, her husband, and Kyle before, but hadn’t seen them in a long while, and had not had the opportunity to meet Nadia or Roxy so it was exceptionally exciting.

We all met at The Honey Hole for dinner and drinks (a perfect place for sex bloggers to meet up at, no?). After much chatting about all manner of things we meandered our way to The Crypt to fondle sexy outfits and peruse sex toys. CoyPink found a couple of sexy pieces of clothing for the amazing photos her husband takes of her, one of which she has already posted photos of: Black Vinyl and More Black Vinyl. (CoyPink also has pictures of Nadia and her up which you should check out.) I picked up a red leopard cuff and a red and black houndstooth fedora, both of which will probably be making their way into photos here soon as well.

After The Crypt we all parted ways, but it was a wonderful evening to be sure. It was so great to meet both Nadia and Roxy, and it’s always a blast to spend time in the company of other like-minded sexually open people. I was, perhaps, a little too reserved, I’m just not all that good with this socializing thing, but I really enjoyed myself and hopefully they did too.

Making Open Relationships Work

On Sunday after the rest of our weekend fun Onyx and I walked to Babeland here in Seattle for a workshop by Tristan Taormino. She called it Poly 201, basically the next level of information after her book Opening Up.

She talked about what does and does not make poly/non-monogamy work and started with a T-chart listing only what doesn’t make poly work on one side which included: New Relationship Energy, Time Management, Miscommunication, Agreement Violation, Jealousy, and Change. She then proceeded to address each factor individually and give the tools and skills to use to combat each of the potential issues. The following is her information both from my notes and as I remember it.

What doesn’t make poly work and the tools we can use to combat each of those issues:

  • New Relationship Energy: patience, compassion, communication
  • Time Management: organization, (google) calendars, negotiation skills
  • Miscommunication: honesty, full disclosure, self-awareness, communication
  • Agreement Violation: checklists, commitment
  • Jealousy: reality check, self-awareness, self-esteem, confidence, security, non-attachment, support/therapy

She stopped there to unpack jealousy a bit for us. Jealousy can be broken down into envy, competitiveness, possessiveness, excluded feelings, insecurity (fear of abandonment, not good enough, not valued, etc.), obsessiveness. Essentially “all roads lead to fear.” Jealousy isn’t about reason or using our intellect it’s about our reptilian brain overtaking us and it takes a fuckofalot to get us out of it. There is a lot of debate as to whether jealousy is innate or learned, but most likely it is some combination.

The following two situations can be both good or bad depending on the situation.

  • Change: the tools needed to cope depends on what kind of change is occuring
  • Love: compersion

Change can be welcome, or it can be difficult and unexpected. New love (and old love) can be a source of great happiness or something that catches us off guard. As Tristan said, there’s a reason why it is called “falling in love,” because most of the time you “fall on your face.” Or perhaps something came into your path that made you stumble and fall, not always in a good way.

When new love comes along specifically it can often trigger “old monogamous programming,” or the socialization that we all get in this culture to believe in monogamy. The best way to combat this is compersion. Compersion is finding joy and happiness in the happiness of your partner with another. It is the opposite of jealousy and a goal in most non-monogamous relationships.

Tristan offered “the selfish person’s guide to compersion” which essentially is for you (the selfish person) to remember that eventually the energy and excitement of the other relationship will come back and help to fuel your relationship. When a relationship is going well for someone they will feel good and that feeling good will bleed over into every relationship that person is in.

That’s the bare bones of what was covered. There was also a Q&A session at the end and after that we said hello to Tristan and got our copy of Opening Up signed. It was a wonderful workshop and was absolutely wonderful to see and meet Tristan Taormino. I highly encourage you to go to a workshop of hers if you ever have the chance!

Quyn (HNT)

While I was in Juneau I bought a sports bra which is smaller than recommended for my breast size. I bought it for the sole purpose of using it as a binder, turning my large breasts into a still-large-but-slightly-smaller chest. I wore it while performing in Julius Caesar and quite a bit around Juneau in general.

I haven’t worn it too much since I’ve been back in Seattle, partially because on days I know I won’t be doing much outside the house I tend to wear things that are comfortable and loose, partly because I have been feeling rather femme lately whenever we have decided to go out, and partly because I’m not completely comfortable showing off this masculine identity to the world yet.

The last few days, however, I’ve been feeling more and more like binding, packing, changing my gender presentation to one that is more masculine. I woke up this morning and just knew I was going to bind.

I’m still not comfortable enough going out here. Juneau was more comfortable, but less comfortable for other things. I don’t know this part of myself well enough to show it to people here yet, but I’m working on it.

04.02

2010

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Relational Assumptions

I came to a realization a few nights ago regaring something I’ve sort of mentioned in a previous post. As the baby of the family I was constantly reminded growing up that I was known to some only by my other relationships. I was her sister or his daughter or so on. Since then it’s always been a little bit of an irritation for me. I don’t want to be known by my relationships I want to be known as me, as a whole person, as myself.

I discovered when leaving Juneau for the first time that I had that opportunity. I was no longer bound by the familial or other relationships I was locked in to in my home town. I could be as flamboyant and outrageous as I desired, or I could safely lurk in the shadows, and no one would be the wiser, they wouldn’t have any information about me before I gave it to them.

When I moved to Salt Lake City to be with Onyx I fell back into that role. I was Onyx’s girlfriend, known by my relationship, known by association. Needless to say it irritated me again, and that irritation (among other things, really) kept me from getting to know some people I wish I had. I didn’t see the whole picture.

Upon deciding to return to Seattle I worried quite a bit about being known by my relationship again. In the few months I was gone (and some in the previous year) Onyx developed or strengthened a number of friends and acquaintences and I have been wondering how I will or won’t fit into those. I don’t have to fit in to all or any of them, but I’ve been wondering about it and wondering how my meeting them through him, being known by association, would affect my relationship with them. I realized, though, that this is more my issue than anyone elses.

When going to Tristan Taormino’s workshop at Babeland on Making Open Relationships Work, afterwards when I was able to talk with her, I introduced myself to her in relation to two things: I reviewed her awesome porno Rough Sex, and she knows my older sister. She also recognized me from Twitter as I @replied her regarding attending her workshop. Thinking about it afterwards I wondered why, when I spent so much time worrying about being known by association, why would I knowingly and purposefully put myself in that situation?

What I came up with was a bit of a happy revelation. First, specifically for that situation, she had other ways of associating me other than my sister, which made it a little safer, but I also knew that would be something which would help me stand apart. It was a way for her to remember me, being a help to me rather than a hinderance.

This is only the most recent example, and the rest of the events of the day definitely contributed to this as well, I think, but this is what made it snap in my head.

I’m responsible for making myself a whole person in the eyes of others.

It seems so simple, it seems ridiculously simple, it was one of those “duh” moments where I would have smacked myself on the forehead if I had not been lying in bed in the dark next to Onyx when I wanted to be sleeping but my mind was too buzzy to turn off yet.

What does it mean, though, really? It’s more than just what it says, because I knew that, but it’s the way that sentence applies to this situation that I hadn’t yet put together. Basically it means I need to stop assuming people have preconceived notions about me, stop worrying about what they might possibly already think about me or what they might possibly assume, and actively work to make sure they see me as a person if I care enough to do so.

I mean, I knew it was my responsibility to do so, but instead of embracing that as meaning I should stop worrying and just do it I let my worry overtake me and stop me from even trying to make myself a whole person because I was pidgeonholed into this role. In reality, while I’m sure there are plenty of people who do see me “just” as Onyx’s partner or “just” by my familial relations or whathaveyou, the assumption that someone I don’t know my own self would do that is vastly unfair.

I think this is a step toward becoming less isolated and more outgoing, caring less what people think, being more comfortable in social situations, and being more comfortable to be the real me.

Over the Weekend

This weekend was, in a word, amazing. Lots of sex, new friends, Tristan Taormino, and our first foursome. Though not in that order.

Wait, though, I need to back up a bit.

While I was in Juneau Onyx met Terra and her husband Storax. Onyx and Terra were attracted to each other and began talking, flirting, getting to know each other, and playing with the idea of more. I was hesitant to endorse this potential new relationship as the triad was so fresh a wound but I was also determined not to hinder Onyx if that was what he wanted to do. After some talk and a lot of overanalization that I do so well and acceptance that this was my own shit that didn’t need to hinder Onyx from exploring this new attraction, I became more and more okay with it.

When he told me they had done things together I reacted in a way I didn’t expect. I expected to have a pang of jealousy, insecurity, envy, anything, but instead I didn’t feel anything like that. I can’t say I was completely to compersion as I can’t say I experienced joy because of it happening, but I didn’t feel negatively about it, which actually confused me. I had felt negatively previously when he first brought the possibility up so I expected to feel that again, but it simply wasn’t there. It was strange, honestly, but really nice.

On Friday Terra came over for a few hours and we pretty much hit it off. We three talked, I showed her my sex toy collection, we all flirted and, eventually, kissed. She left with a play date scheduled for Sunday when she and Storax would come over and we could see if things progressed further between her and I, or basically just see what would happen.

That night Onyx and I were up late. I’m still sore, actually. We talked about the possibilities that Sunday might bring which just added to the usual high level of lust that has become the norm between us again.

Saturday was spent recovering, mostly. We cuddled and kissed while we watched shows, ate, enjoyed each other’s company, and fucked. We’ve both become quite into him slapping me in the face or tits and pinching and twisting my nipples hard.

Sunday we got up early to finish some things we had not gotten to the night before. I had been wanting to do a batch of dishwasher dildos for a while, by which I mean sterilizing my sterilizeable toys by running them through the dishwasher on the top rack with no soap, and so I did while we did some general cleaning up, showered, got ready, and so forth.

They brought coffee and we all sat around talking for a while, further getting to know each other. We put on some porn, Storax and I were scratching Terra’s back which progressed into some groping and kissing before determining it would be best to move into the bedroom. Once there we all began gentle exploration and a good four hours or so was spent in such blissful fun that I only remember it in fragments, snapshots.

The three of us using various implements to smack Terra’s ass. Terra and Storax remarking about my cunt piercings. Onyx’s fingers on my nipples, Terra’s tongue on my clit, Storax sucking my toes (which I never thought I would enjoy, but I did). Terra coming around my fingers as my tongue flicked against her clit, Onyx’s cock in her mouth, Storax’s fingers in my ass. Terra sucking Onyx’s cock as I licked his balls. Onyx helping me suck Storax’s cock. Using an enema syringe for the first time. Onyx coming as he stroked himself, Terra licked his balls and fingering his ass, Storax’s cock in my ass (that happened a lot). Storax coming in Terra’s mouth as Onyx and I watched and I softly sucked Onyx’s spent cock.

Lots of kissing. Lots of anal for everyone. Lots of grinning. Lots of groping. Lots of check-ins, both verbal and non-verbal between pretty much everyone, everyone making sure everyone else was having fun and enjoying themselves. Lots of breaks for whatever we needed, but the ease of sliding back into play when those needs were satiated.

It was beyond wonderful. It was so different from our threesome experience, it was all about fun, play, and making sure everyone was having a good time without obsessing about it. There was no jealousy or negative feelings, things were taken slow in some areas, especially where Storax and I were concerned, and he was extremely good about asking me if I was alright with him doing something before he did it, especially since we had not talked about it at all before things happened.

I was a little reserved, apprehensive, unsure of how much to assert myself, unsure of what I should or should not do at times, but also wanting to just sit back and see what the others wanted to do. I was happy to relax and let things progress as they all wanted, especially knowing that this is likely to happen again.

As evening rolled around we all rinsed off, dressed, and Onyx and I got ready to go to Tristan Taormino’s workshop on “Making Open Relationships Work,” which seemed like a fitting end to a lovely day. Although we lamented having to stop the fun we were all having, but were reminded that Terra and Storax live here, unlike Tristan, and they both had no qualms with emphatically assuring us this would be able to happen again.

After the workshop (for that itself is a separate post) we came home, relaxed, and went to bed exhausted. Fortunately the excitement of the weekend was enough to encourage another hot and intense rough fucking session complete with multiple orgasms for me. The weekend ended in cuddles while Onyx drifted off to sleep.

03.24

2010

Looking Forward

Onyx and I are making lots of plans for this coming year, places and events we are going to go to and people we want to see. Lucky for us there are many awesome events right here in Seattle this year that we are going to, and one in our former home of Salt Lake City. Once I get a job and start making money we may be able to afford other events (there are plenty I would love to go to, kink conferences especially), but for the moment we are sticking to mostly local events.

We are also extremely excited about Amber (of Divergent Dance) and Em (of Life in Transition) heading up our way in April. Onyx got to meet them in November (I think, maybe December?) while I was in Juneau which I was highly jealous about, and now it’s my turn! I’m sure I’ll be writing about the experience.

(Edit)
I also forgot at the time of posting this that Nadia West is coming our way in April. Lucky for us all she happens to be coming the same weekend that Kyle and Roxy are also planning on visiting the Emerald City and seeing us! The wonderful CoyPink lives nearby as well and I haven’t seen her since I left to Juneau, so the six of us are planning on going out. It should be an absolute blast!
(/Edit)

Some of these events are small workshops and such, some of them are bigger conferences. I will probably be writing about all if not most of them, so here’s a taste of what might be coming up post-wise. You can find information about each of the events by clicking on their titles (they’re all linked), or checking out the FetLife event page for each of them. I was going to write a little blurb about each of them, but I figure if you’re interested you can click the link!

I’m also interested to know if anyone of you are planning on attending any of these events, if so comment or drop me an email! (lotus AT scarletstsyr.com)

BDSM and Anal Play
March 27
CSPC (Seattle)
FetLife Event

Making Open Relationships Work
March 28
Babeland (Seattle)
FetLife Event

Seattle Erotic Arts Festival (SEAF)
April 30 – May 2
Seattle
FetLife Event

Sex 2.0
May 22 – 23
Seattle
FetLife Event

Element 11
June 10 – 14
Salt Lake City
FetLife Group

Servant’s Retreat I
June 25 – 27
Kenmore, WA
FetLife Event

What A Year

One year ago I wrote an introduction to Marla. We had already been talking for a few weeks previous to that. In so many ways it doesn’t seem like it has been a year, but in others it seems like it should have been far longer. Everything happened so quickly, she was living with us less than six months after I first introduced her, and then everything split apart just a few months later.

She once asked me if I planned on writing a post to commemorate our anniversary. This isn’t what either of us had in mind.

In some ways it makes me extremely excited for what the next year will bring. Where will I be in March of 2011? What will be happening and what will I be thinking? How will my identities and thoughts and passions have changed and grown and evolved?

In some ways it makes me sad that I have not posted as much this past year as I wanted to or wish I had, but I also know that was a product of the situation. I just couldn’t write about what I was thinking and feeling, for various reasons. I was highly distracted. I know I write about her quite often, but it’s difficult not to write about someone who had such an extreme impact on every aspect of my life as she did.

I will be moving back to Seattle in five short days, hoping that the situation I am coming back to will encourage me to write rather than the opposite, though I also hope to be far more busy so I may have to finally learn how to prioritize (and judging by the half-dozen drafts I have open while writing this that may take a bit to do). I am a different person now than I was a year ago, in so many ways. I’m looking forward to what the next year will bring.

My life is a series of changes, a series of hits and misses, ghosts and corpses. I’ve lost a lot and gained what I’ve taken. This time next year I won’t be this girl anymore, I’ll be something new. I’ll be a new image, a new collage in the making. But no matter who I become next I will always remember the people I’ve been and all the pieces I’ve kept. – We the Living Photography [image]

What I Don’t Need

At some point before I’ve talked about relationship needs, that is the needs of the relationship, but in the last few months something that has been extremely important for me to realize has been a different sort of relationship need, that is, a lack of need.

When I was younger a relationship or, more accurately, the absence of and desire for a relationship was always the focal point of my life, with other things often working to fill the void I felt without a partner. I think part of the reason why I left theatre life is because I was so focused on the need to be in a relationship, the need for a partner, and I thought theatre would distract from that. The reason I have recently been able to come back to it is because of this new lack of a need.

The word “need” is thrown about so much even though so often it is impossible to accurately separate needs from wants when in the moment, one must step outside and analyze and discern in order to figure out what is really necessary and what is a passing fancy, and even that is difficult without hindseight. Luckily life is much like the philosopher Jagger sang1, and often these things work out on their own. Needs aren’t bad things by any means, so long as we can distinguish between need and want.

So often are we told that in order to be a complete and true person we must be in a couple, we are only part of a whole, and when we are told something over and over again it becomes like a need. We do not need others to fulfill or complete ourselves, though we often feel like we do because we are told that we do for various reasons. We are told we are incomplete without the perfect partner, not to mention marketing strategies which tell us we are not complete without some product or another, but that is a whole other post. The point is we need to be able to be happy and complete without external influences.

This isn’t to say that we don’t need relationships. After all, humans are social creatures, as the cliché tells us, and I’ve studied enough psychology and sociology to know that is basically true2. While love is part of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs relationships in general aren’t the same as the idealized spend-all-of-your-time-together can’t-think-of-anyone-but-each-other completely emotionally dependent romantic relationships perpetuated by society. We grow up thinking that is what we need, to find someone to fill the void within ourselves, before realizing that no one can really fill that but ourselves.

Need indicates more than a desire. Saying that I need something is the same as saying that there is some fundamental part of me that requires something in order to survive, be complete, or be happy. I do need friends and relationships, but that doesn’t mean I need any one specific person. If that was true than no one would ever maintain friendships outside of romantic relationships.

Distinguishing the difference between the idealized relationship and a healthy independent relationship is something the triad taught me. While I knew in my head that it was best to have lives and friends and interests outside of the relationship I always had a difficult time engaging in anything like that aside from school. Once I graduated I lost my outside focus and my relationship with Onyx was strained ever since. He was also supporting me financially, he was basically providing me with the first three levels of my hierarchy of needs and neither of us was completely comfortable with that.

Spending time away from him really has done wonders for our relationship, for both of us. I’ve gotten to the point of embracing my autonomy and independence, enjoying time alone in a new way, which was truly necessary after the triad, which truly was a spend-all-of-your-time-together dependent romantic relationship. In addition to everything else I actually think rediscovering this independence has actually been a major catalyst for the rediscovery of my desire to be submissive for long periods of time rather than for short bursts during play. Now that I am not dependent on him my choice to be submissive is that much stronger. But I digress, that also is another post.

“I need you” now leaves me with a bad taste in my mouth. I don’t want to be needed or to need anyone else, it puts too much pressure on the relationship. I would rather everyone involved was coming to the relationship from a place of want and desire, a place where the relationship is fun, voluntary, and exciting rather than necessary or required. Thus I am officially striking the phrase “I need you” or any derivative thereof from my romantic repertoire. I choose instead to employ phrases such as “I want you” or “I crave you” which are equally as powerful but are less dependent.

edit

Brought to my attention by the wonderful Kristi, Amanda Palmer’s cover of “I Want You, But I Don’t Need You” is fabulously in the exact same vein as my post above, and therefore needed to be embedded and shared. Not to mention it’s Amanda Palmer which automatically makes it that much more awesome.

  1. Referencing both the pilot episode of House and The Rolling Stones, of course. []
  2. I do have a degree in Psychology, which basically just allows me to go “hmm” when presented with any personal information about a person. []

Spiraling Forward

Well, I’m officially moving back to Seattle. I have a one-way ticket for March 17th.

This seemed like an impossibility at the end of November, the end of the triad, and part of me is surprised at the way things turned out, yet I’m also not surprised.

I still feel guilty for the way things ended, and I feel guilty for being with Onyx again when I was so sure that wasn’t going to happen. I allowed for it to happen, obviously, and I’m happy that we have come to a much better phase in our relationship, but I still have this gnawing sense of guilt. Why? Because I told Marla it wasn’t going to happen. I told her we would be with each other, I told her we would be together. I truly believed it at the time, but I spoke in absolutes not knowing what the future would hold.

I still miss her sometimes, lots of things remind me of her, and I wonder how it will be to go back to the apartment where the three of us lived. I wonder how long it will take before it takes on new light and I see it again as my home with Onyx and not where we three lived. I’m sure it will forever be both, but eventually the pang of longing will fade. I look back now and I see how we weren’t right for each other, I know what happened has been for the best, but that doesn’t mean the love I felt went away.

Things with Onyx are so different, so new, it’s almost like a completely new relationship in some ways, and our connection is now better than ever. We were both able to break down many of the walls between us after, in spite of, and because of what happened. We are connecting on a deeper level, I think, and in new ways.

Of course, reconnecting is bringing up old issues too, namely social, things I can just think about while I’m here and don’t have any way of fixing or doing anything about now. I’m worried about the way that we fit together in social situations, I tend to be quiet and even when engaging in a conversation I never seem to get a word in because I’m not a Conversation Top. I prefer quiet intimate settings to clubs or parties, but how does one get to the point of having a quiet intimate setting without knowing people first? I tend to feel left out and even, admittedly, anxious in social situations where I don’t know anyone, or even in social situations where I do know people just not well.

Sometimes I just wish I was more outgoing, but I’m not. I’m trying to change that as much as I can, but it’s not easy.

I’m also battling again with being a queer person in a heterosexual relationship. Maybe this shouldn’t be that big of a deal, but it is. Sometimes I feel like I am betraying part of myself to be with him, which is an odd thing to say.

I worry about falling back into the rut that we did before, or that we are idealizing each other due to being apart and when we are back living together the changes that seem to have happened will disappear. I don’t know if this will happen, obviously, but I definitely don’t know for sure that it won’t. I am trying not to have that expectation, though, and not encourage it to happen, but I do wonder.

We are at a much better place than we ever have been before, and we have been making plans to do things that we have talked about for a while but not gotten around to. Hopefully we will be getting memberships to the CSPC in addition to planning on attending SEAF, Sex 2.0, Element 11, and generally getting more involved in the community in Seattle.

Onyx will be coming up here on Friday for a week to see the play I am in as well to spend time with me. I feel like I’ve been doing a lot of relationship blah-blah-blahing lately on this blog, so hopefully soon I’ll get back to writing some sexy stuff after he’s here!