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 my pronouns are they/them or any neutral pronouns. I spend a lot of my time studying sacred sexuality, sacred kink, relationships, the body, queer theory, depth psychology, archetypes, mythology, erotic neurobiology, 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 ‘Power Play’


Equality in Inequality

I was sitting at his feet as we watched a show, the most normal of circumstances, my head resting on his thigh and his hand in my hair, and I came to a micro revelation. This isn’t really new, I’ve written about this same thing before and it’s how Onyx and I have operated for quite a while, but I had not really put the pieces together as to why I’m considered a “bad” submissive by some and why I had such trouble accepting some of the submissive tropes I had heard in the past.

I used to have more trouble submitting than I do now. I was told constantly that in order to submit I must think of my Top/Owner/WhatHaveYou as someone better than myself, higher than myself, someone to look up to not just literally. I was told that in order to be a submissive I must think of myself as less than or inferior.

While I will admit there are things which Onyx is better than me at there are just as many things which I am better than him at. We’re pretty fairly balanced as far as skills and intelligence goes, I believe. For a long while I had trouble with this concept because I was trying to fit our equality, or equity, along lines of a differentiated power dynamic.

It was from me sitting at his feet, my hair being stroked as I laid my head upon his thigh and we both watched the screen before us, that I understood this difference. For me it’s never been about being less than someone else that makes me want to submit, it’s about relinquishing control to another and trusting someone else completely enough to do that. Enjoying being treated like Onyx’s pet or prized possession, has nothing to do with being less than him or inferior to him, but is simply the dynamic we choose to enact.

The power dynamic between Onyx and myself comes from a place of equality. We are equals and because we are equals I can choose to be his property, because I have power I can choose to give that power over to him. If I had no power, if I had no choice, then there would be less enjoyment for both of us. It’s never been about inferiority for us, although there is nothing wrong with playing with that dynamic as well, but it’s just not where either of us live.

When I was having trouble submitting, when we were having trouble with our dynamic, I was told to think of him as better than me, to trust that he knows better than I do or that he is more capable than I am so that he could lead me. I had trouble with this. The real issue that was happening was I didn’t trust him and he didn’t trust himself, so we both were sabotaging the dynamic we both wanted but also feared. What I needed to do was trust that he knew what I wanted and needed and would choose what to give me, not to hold him up as greater than myself as I was told.

Although we play with power and pain there is no inequality in our relationship dynamic, which may sound like an oxymoron. I put my trust in him to take care of me and give me what I need and he puts his trust in me that I will take care of him and give him what he needs. We’re each giving and taking in different ways, but we’re both equally valued and appreciated and both getting and giving.

Perhaps equity is a better term for it than equality. Unfortunately equality comes along with all sorts of connotations that are not necessarily all good. Equality does not mean identicality or sameness, although a lot of people seem to think that is true. Equality doesn’t mean abolishing differences but it’s about celebrating sameness and differences. Really the way I use equality is the same as equity, but for the sake of minimizing confusion I think equity makes more sense in this instance.

Obviously by imposing a power dynamic on our relationship we are not equal in some senses of the word, but our contributions to each other and the relationship are equitable. They are valued the same and we are valued the same because of it. We are equals although we do not always interact in ways typically thought of as equal. We play with inequality in our actions because we are equals in every other way.

Wavelengths

My mother has been visiting for the last little over a week. She’s been staying in the living room of our tiny one bedroom apartment which means Onyx and I really have only had sex once in the last little over a week. I would say this is quite less than usual, though our number and frequency varies from time to time depending on how busy we are etc. Last night especially I was ready to about jump him, however. Today she is heading East to visit family over there. A text message exchange from earlier today:

Onyx: Is your mom heading to PA today?

Me: I believe she is, she hasn’t left quite yet. I would very much like some rough sex when she is gone. ;D

Onyx: I was just thinking about slappin’ you around a bit.

Me: Excellent. I love when we are on the same wavelength! :D

The minute she was gone I went into our bedroom where he was taking a nap and proceeded to wake him up with kisses and a blowjob, or facefucking, whichever you would prefer to call it. That is, I started the action but he quickly took over leading the movements of my head with his hands usually via my hair and including the occasional slap on the cheek. After a bit of this he quickly guided me over and down onto my stomach and pressed my head and chest into the bed, easily sliding into me and pinning me down as he began to fuck me. Needless to say, I was happy.

His hands played with my head a little: he pulled my hair, he slapped my cheeks, he slipped his fingers into either side of my mouth and held my mouth open, he covered my mouth and nose so I couldn’t breathe. All of this while continuing to pound into me as I lay trapped beneath him, as I moaned and tried to thrust back with my hips as best as possible–though that wasn’t too possible. He then took each of my wrists and brought them behind my back, pressing down again to keep me against the bed and fucking me with extra vigor until he came inside of me.

We lay there, both working on catching our breath before rolling over, snuggling, kissing, exchanging “I love you”s. Soon his fingers were on my clit with his other hand in my hair. We kissed and I panted and squealed and moaned my way to four or so most delicious orgasms culminating in the strongest one last. I’ve just about gotten this coming on command thing down, though that’s another post.

Learning How to Follow

The other night Onyx and I went out swing dancing with Sinclair and Kristin at the most awesome Century Ballroom here in Seattle. Sinclair and Kristin have done lots of swing dancing, I’ve done a small amount many many years ago but have done a fair amount of dancing in general, and Onyx had never done any before1. There was a short lesson before the band got started to teach us some very basic steps and we were divided up into “leaders” and “followers” (which was nicely gender-neutral terminology and not surprising for Capitol Hill).

I was suddenly struck and unsure of which side to go on. Every time I had done swing or any partner dancing in the past I’ve always been a leader, but since Onyx was coming (he wasn’t there yet, he had to work late) I decided I would learn it from the follower’s perspective so he could be the leader.I’m sure he would have had no issue with the opposite generally if it were just the two of us, in fact I’ve lead him in partner dancing when we’ve gone out before and neither of us feels strange about it, but since it’s a social event I thought it would be a nice for me to get experience in the follower side of things. After all, I could always switch later, not to mention I would get experience with both sides either way.

We all got in a large circle of pairs and learned the very basic six count rock-step and step-step as well as a couple turns and there was great emphasis in leaders learning how to lead and followers learning how to follow. Since basically all of my experience has been as a leader I had some issues giving up control.

Surprise surprise.

Yes, I actually am talking about swing dancing, but of course this is an excellent analogy for all the problems I’ve had as a submissive. You know, just in case you didn’t already figure that out (though you probably did, I’m not discounting your intelligence I just have a tendency to over-explain. Anyway.)

I really enjoyed myself, and because the instructors had the followers switch partners every few steps while we were all going through the brief lesson I was able to dance with a number of different people, three of which asked me to dance later on in the night. I only ended up dancing with one of them because first I was catching Onyx up on the dancing technique as he had missed the instruction and then I was nursing the ankle I rolled while dancing (ouch), and by the time I was dancing again the two who I declined at the time were busy with others or had left.

I learned, however, something that I’ve been learning a lot in the last few months, especially since I got back from Juneau, and that is that I can follow and I can do a damn good job at it too when I allow myself to. When I trust that the other person is able to lead me I am able to allow them to do so, though it does take a lot of practice especially since I’m also quite a strong leader myself.

Onyx did exceptionally well as I taught him how to lead, especially for someone who claims to have no rhythm, it took a little while but he got the basic steps down. He’s agreed to take classes with me, which I am extremely thrilled about and plan to hold him to.

I was amused at how much like in the beginnings of our power relationship I was again teaching him how to lead me so that I could adequately follow, though not doing a great job at it myself. I’m sure with enough practice as well as much help from others he will become an excellent leader to my follower just as he has off of the dance floor.

I’ll still be leading with others, though, whenever I can.

  1. Onyx thinks he is completely without rhythm and body coordination despite having learned both while he was in the Norwegian army and being able to dance at the local goth club when we go out–granted goth dancing isn’t about rhythm, but anyway… []

International Cane-A-Slut Day 2010

Tomorrow (or today for some of you–June 6th) is International Cane-A-Slut Day, pretty much purely because we have decreed it to be so. The idea was Onyx’s originally and it was supported by @Saynine, @Mindcryme, and myself. When reminded of it a few days ago I decided I would make a webpage, twitter account, and tumblr for it and start promoting it all over. So far it’s worked.

I created a FetLife event page for it as well, which has (currently) 28 people attending and 13 people maybe attending, which is pretty good for something that I started putting out there two or so days ago. It helps that it’s not something people have to “go” to, but something we all can do in our own homes (or wherever you choose to participate).

It’s pretty much just pure silly fun, and Onyx is endlessly amused that I took his half-joking tweet and turned it into a reality. When talking to a friend about it I mentioned making a website for it because “that’s what I do” and I realized that is very much the case. I get a good idea (or take a great idea from someone else) and turn it into a project. While this one doesn’t take up a lot of time like some other projects of mine it’s just a fun annual event for one and all. Already planning for next year

Want Perpetuates Want

ABY101209e by jvrsta

There are times when I can’t escape from want. Want perpetuates want until all I can think of is taking or being taken. Lately it’s been the latter. The most mundane movements crackle with the electricity of my desire for it. With each moment want increases exponentially until it consumes my entire being and I feel my body begin to sing with it, unsure if anyone else can sense the desires within me threatening to explode.

Every movement of my lips makes me think of cool steel being placed between them, forcing them open a little to wide, almost painfully, after not too long my jaw beginning to ache. My mouth open and available for use or just for amusement as I am unable to contain the spit dribbling out onto my breasts. Or I think of a hand covering my mouth, pinching my nose shut, controlling my breath and stealing my air, not letting me breathe for just a little longer than I think I can handle before releasing and letting me gulp for it, even my most essential of functions controlled.

My fingers lift up to absently run through my hair and suddenly I can think of nothing else but a hand gripping and pulling on the short purple mess, making my scalp burn. My head tingles with want and later, when I am alone, I will allow my digits to curl around those locks and tug, although the feeling is nothing like when the fingers aren’t mine.

Using my hands to gesticulate or type or simply any movement in which I become aware of them makes my wrists ache for want of the bite of rope or cuffs lining them. The bracelets I always wear feel heavy with my own perception as the pressure they place increases the want, and awareness of my wrists makes my attention also focus on my ankles. I want to be bound, helpless, enveloped by the power of my partner and trapped in that moment where all I can fixate on is the sensation. Maybe blindfolded, maybe not, but unable to see what is coming next and my entire body alive with anticipation.

Every time I shift my attention is brought first to my ass and then to my cunt, the attention itself enough to make my lips tingle and grow with want. I know that were I to sneak a finger into my core I would feel the hot wetness that is even now creeping out onto my underwear. I would feel my vulva puffy with want of use, my holes craving to be taken.

My ass, on the other hand, tingles with a different kind of want, aching for the smart sting of a cane, hoping to be bruised this time as bruising does not come easily. I want a hand, a flogger, a cane, anything that will make me quiver with desire and make my cunt that much more overtaken with want. I would close my eyes and imagine the pattern the glowing lines are making, imagine the perfectly lined angry and raised red marks against my pale skin.

I want the continual moments of perpetuation of desire to last forever, hanging in a state of anticipation that my mind or my partner has created. I want everything in those moments, my entire being overtaken with want and desire to be taken to a different state of mind. Power is a drug and I am an addict, but I will happily drown in my addiction so I may feel the want again and again. With a good partner our addiction feeds each other, my discomfort is our pleasure, my pain our high, the power exchange our masterpiece.

Call for Submissions: Spirit of Desire

From Lee Harrington’s LJ, he’s compiling an awesome anthology about sacred kink!

Spirit of Desire: Personal Journeys in Sacred Kink

In 2009, Lee Harrington’s “Sacred Kink: The Eightfold Paths of BDSM and Beyond” opened up the dialogue around altered states of consciousness, sexuality with intent, sex magic, and BDSM and its intersections with faith to an audience hungry for information. Now, it’s time to tell your stories.

Have you experienced catharsis, ordeals, transformation or a rite of passage in your erotic edge experiences? Do your perceive your consensual slavery as an ascetic path, find depth in your fear play, or dance in delight at the end of a lash? Do your fetish objects hold actual power? Does your connection to the divine manifest through your kink, engaging you through possession in or through scenes or as a sacred consort? Perhaps you have a different tale to tell?

Authors are invited to write 2-10 pages (approximately 1000-5500 words) about their own personal experiences with Sacred Kink. Anthology contributions need to be about a specific encounter or theme/concept within the life of the author, not on Sacred Kink in general. Fiction is not appropriate. Poetry will be considered on a case by case basis.

Who Should Contribute:

We are looking for a variety of contributions- Tops and Bottoms, Masters/Mistresses and Slaves, Fetishists, Voyeurs, Swingers, Male, Female, Genderqueer, Straight, Queer, Monogamous, Polyamorous, Monotheist, Pantheist, Atheist, God-Owned… and everyone else. English-language contributions preferred, but multi-lingual entries accepted on a case by case basis.

How To Contribute:

Send a one-paragraph summary of the concept of what you want to write about to Lee@PassionAndSoul.com with the subject line “Spirit of Desire Anthology” before August 1st, 2010. Also include up to one paragraph about yourself as the author.

Why the summaries first? A book of only one type of entries would not show the diversity of Sacred Kink encounters and experiences taking place in our community and behind closed doors.

Once summaries have been accepted, authors will have until September 7th to get their rough draft in. New authors will be worked with throughout the process to help share their unique story with the world.

Are you ready to tell your tale of Sacred Kink? Drop us a line.

Compensation:

Authors will have their biographies listed in the book, have wholesale rights to the project, and receive 1 finished copy of the book upon completion.

Doublethink Over Dissonance

Onyx and I have settled in to a remarkably comfortable D/s dynamic. We have talked extensively about it, but the difference this time is that it just clicks, for lack of a better term. All the background issues that were making so much noise the last time we were trying these power roles have been resolved, thanks in large part to the many things we learned through the trial of the triad. I find myself enjoying to do things for him, and he is now more able to push and guide me than he was before. It is, in a word, wonderful.

I have noticed that I am hesitant to share this power dynamic with others, even on here to an extent. I believe this is in part due to it still, in some ways, being so new and foreign but mostly it is because it is still private and vulnerable. Despite the abundance with which I share my private feelings and thoughts on this blog (less so now than I have before, but I’m working on writing more when I don’t have writer’s block) I have an extremely difficult time sharing personal things with others, especially in person and especially those I don’t know very well. Hell, I even have trouble expressing things to Onyx sometimes which I would have no issue writing to him.

The last couple of weekends while going out with amazing people I’ve noticed myself being slightly more comfortable but still not all that comfortable with expressing my submissiveness, and that was with fellow kinky perverted people who have read my blog including stories of me being slapped and dominated and fucked. I don’t mean showing my submissvieness to them, but just talking about it.

I see others so secure in their submission and happy to proclaim to the world that they are submissive and I find myself having trouble with that. Perhaps it is because I am a switch. I can’t fully embrace my role as submissive because, although I feel submissive to Onyx, I do not feel wholly like a submissive. I cannot throw myself into submission with complete abandon because I am also a Top. Or, that is the roadblock I come to in my mind.

Although I don’t consciously think this is true, there is a part of me that thinks embracing submission fully would mean giving up the parts of myself that are not submissive. Call it internalized binary programming that says I have to be one or the other but never both. The way some people say someone can’t feel Dominant and submissive at the same time, but I highly disagree, I say I am always both and it is the people I am with and situations I am in that bring each out in me.

However, I don’t have any hesitations about expressing my dominant side. I think in part this is because it is less vulnerable, less private, in a way. I am more comfortable with it, but also because it seems to be less normative. It’s more “okay” to express because it somehow shakes up the expectations.

I feel the same way with sexuality and gender, I’m far more comfortable expressing my desires when they have to do with cis-females or trans-people than when they have to do with cis-males. Essentially, I’m far more comfortable expressing my queer sexuality than what would be seen as a hetero-sexuality, as if expressing desire for cis-males somehow makes me less queer. Of course, in some minds it does. In some minds it would completely invalidate any other expression of queerness.

Similarly with gender I have been desiring lately to express my masculine side, the personae (yes, plural) I designate as Quyn or Sebastian sometimes. I used to dress more masculine and drifted to the feminine and now I’m working on finding the way to be both or neither, to dress as I please. While I’m more comfortable expressing my femme drag queen gender identity I think because that, in some ways, is the one that is less normative, despite being assigned female at birth, but that’s a whole other post.

Perhaps in the same vein expressing submissive desires could somehow invalidate any expression of dominance. I’m not saying this is the case, but I do think that Aristotelian logic is so ingrained in our culture that it is difficult to work against. If we express ourselves as being on one side of a cultural binary we are not only saying what we are but we are saying what we are not. By this logic when I say I am submissive I’m also saying I’m not dominant. It works for everything, really: power, sexuality, gender, etc. All the identities I hold middle ground on, certainly, and others as well.

I’ve talked about this many times before, I know, and read about the phenomenon. It’s not new, but it is significant. The point I’m trying to make here, though, is that I’m more comfortable expressing one aspect but not another on these supposed binaries (and I should point out that I do not see power dynamics or sexualities as part of a binary system, but they are largely seen culturally to be so which makes operating outside of them difficult and that is why I am referring to them as binaries), and my comfortability seems to be backwards. I am comfortable expressing the non-normative desires, those outside what is culturally expected, when it’s usually (or so I think) the opposite.

I want to be just as comfortable expressing and embracing all of my identities, and the first step just like with anything is acknowledgement. I have internalized binary and aristotelian logic programming. I have internalized power dynamic programming. I can actively work on acknowledging this programming and work to move beyond it, and that’s what I’m trying to do. Instead of thinking of these socially contrary ideas in terms of conflict and feeling dissonance over them I want to get to a point of doublethink, where I am comfortable with embracing these identities that seem to be contradictory and am, further, comfortable in my own skin. That’s what it’s all about in the end, anyway.

Civil War

I feel as though I have warring factions within me, aching for battle and unsure of what to do, trying to figure out who comes out on top, but there is no “on top” to come out onto, not that I would have it if there were. In a world of innumerable options I can see them all and wish to partake in all of them, and not just one by one.

It is an ever-constant ever-changing process to become the me I wish to be, and so often I have no idea how to do it. I look at the past to help inform my present, to see what worked and what not to do, but I can only do so much without the freedom to explore beyond the limited space I am in now. I am made up of not just one but many dichotomies that are constantly at war and trying to figure out how to live together harmoniously.

As much as I don’t believe in binary systems for most things because these ideas are so solid in their construction it does often feel like I am being pulled in two directions. I must be one or the other at any given time as both cannot exist in the same moment or in the same space. It’s okay to have different aspects in yourself but for them to be existing at the same time seems to be something that is not believable.

I’m tired of rigid lines separating me from myself. I feel constantly torn, constantly at war with the sides I am told are opposites. They do not feel like opposites. I never am not one while presenting as the other, so how do I adequately express myself?

So I am exploring and learning, growing, changing, as much as possible but it never feels enough. I don’t know how to become who I will be, I only know how to be the me I am right now. The trick is to be okay with that and only that in the moment while striving for better.

Death, Rebirth, and Submission


Clutched by notoca

When the triad first started we talked a lot about how it would change my relationship with Onyx. We had to get rid of the monogamous-type relationship we had developed over the years and move into an open polyamorous one and then also to incorporating Marla into the mix. I talked about it somewhat when it was happening, but not as much as we all were talking about it.

In Opening Up by Tristan Taormino she talks about this transition and needing to mourn the loss of the previous relationship. In some ways I think we did too good of a job of this. We destroyed our past relationship through everything that happened, and in many ways never rebuilt it while the triad was going on. In some ways I’m glad, as that has enabled us to come together now and be that much stronger after time apart and time to miss each other.

While talking about some of our pre-triad relationship failings Onyx said today: “that relationship is dead, and the two people involved live on only in the memories of two stronger, wiser, and more self-aware beings with the same names.” In so many ways it is so overwhelmingly true. This new second chance that we have been given has only been able to happen because we have already mourned the relationship we used to have, and we both have grown so incredibly much over the last year. We both knew that getting out of Utah would allow us to grow in new ways, but I never expected this.

It’s as if we are two different people than we were five years ago when we met. Some things are the same, of course, we’re still amazingly compatible and have rediscovered the love and lust that brought us together in the first place. We are both much more open than we were, we have fewer walls between us, and now we are able to give ourselves to the other without nearly as many reservations. Our love just continues to grow and it’s amazing.

Gone is the hesitation I felt in the past and my need for him to somehow prove his dominance over me in an unreasonable way. Now I just have this overwhelming desire to submit to him. To be completely honest it took me off guard. When he came up to Juneau I wasn’t sure if it was going to be a farewell trip or if we were going to reconnect, but I didn’t expect it to be so hard-hitting. I want to support and encourage him, to give myself to him in ways that I wasn’t prepared to before, to be completely open to him and do anything he desires.

We have been talking endlessly about everything, our communication has never been better, and the more we communicate the more I desire him and the more I desire to submit to him. It is amazing to feel this passion in our relationship again, though in some ways it is a completely new relationship as I mentioned above.

We have both come to express our desire for more firm D/s roles and have settled quite easily and surprisingly back into our Owner/cuntpet dynamic. Obviously the situation is quite different than it was before by nature of being so far away, but because we know each other so well it is also very easy to let our imagination combine with past experiences to bring our long distance interactions close to reality.

I’m having a lot of fun exploring my submissive side again, especially now that it is flowing so much easier than it once did. I love feeling confidence in our interactions and being able to let go of the expectations I once held so tightly on to, making our dynamic that much better. I am really surprised at how much more natural it feels this time around, how neither of us are struggling or straining, and how perfect it feels. He is my Owner again, and it is wonderful.

Breathe and Let Go


via Squall Leonhartt cropped by me for use in this post

I feel his hand cover my mouth and know what is about to come. Taking a deep breath through my nose quickly before he pinches that shut, my eyes fly open to look into his as he looms above me. My hands are at my sides, gripping at the sheet beneath me, trying to hold on for as long as possible as he pauses his movements inside of me, his cock buried in me, my legs splayed open wantonly aside his hips, my feet curling up around his waist.

I close my eyes again and embrace the sensations flooding me. The pressure of his flesh sunk deep within me reminds me I am his to be used. His hand covering my mouth and fingers holding my nose closed remind me I am his to be played with. I feel my head become lighter with lack of oxygen, my lungs start to strain for anything they can get and, so denied, begin to burn with the desire for air.

My hands come up toward his arm without thinking, my eyes open again to look at him, but I stop myself from tapping out, wanting to withstand the torture for as long as possible before wordlessly asking him to stop. Once I do ask he will wait for just a few moments longer before giving me back the breath that he has stolen.

I feel my lungs tightening and straining more fiercely now, my head becoming dizzy, my thoughts fuzzy, and my movements slightly weakening. My body is screaming with the need to fight or flight, but I am calming it as much as possible as I endure his control over my breathing.

I tap his arm once and then again and again as forcefully as I can muster, the next few moments seem to drag on as he takes his time releasing me from his grasp.

I breathe.

My lungs are full again, and in breathing my mind clouds even more. I am sunk down into deeper submission as the feeling of his control and my vulnerability washes over me. I roll my head to the side just slightly. His movements resume, hard, forceful, pressing me into the mattress as he takes my cunt and moves my ankles to his shoulders.

I respond autonomically, my hands resume their place gripping the sheet and my moans and whimpers escape my throat without any coercion or thought on my part. He draws the responses from me with his movements, his hands now at my breasts to arouse me further, playing with and pulling my nipples.

My mind is blank other than the sensations he is causing in me and I cry out softly as his hand now impacts with my left cheek, my face burning from the slap, both cheeks reddening as I recognize my enjoyment of being treated so roughly. His hand that just slapped me moves again to cover my mouth, and I take a deep breath through my nose quickly before he pinches that shut.

Though I’m not referencing any direct incident in this scene it is one that has happened many times, especially when Onyx was up visiting. While writing it I had the most interesting physical reactions to the scenario, not becoming aroused1 but also feeling the burning in my lungs and lightheadedness that accompanies this type of play.

  1. though I most certainly did become aroused while writing this []