Exploding out of the closet- exploring my life, 17-19

I was reading Calico's older blog about coming out into the scene, and figuring out who you are, and what you're into, along with thinking about if kink is a sexual orientation or not. I get asked that a lot at work.

I knew I was kinky pretty much all along. I tied my hands behind my back when I slept with my blanky cause it made me feel safe. When I masturbated, I didn't really start to get off until I started gagging myself (with that same blanky) or using some sort of clamps on my nipples, or my labia. I liked pain- sharp, intense pain, when I was about to cum, and no other time, mind- without it I really could not orgasm. And believe me, I tried!

I thought maybe that quirk was just because it was me on my own, and with someone else I wouldn't need it... but it was only a matter of months til I asked my first lover to spank me, something he couldn't do without laughing, which really hurt me emotionally. He and I used biting, instead, as a way for me to get off, and to this day it's one of my favourite things. With other lovers, I made sure the kink aspect was there- my girlfriend during this time switched with me (and is now in a Master/slave relationship, and has been for a looooong time), and it was something I definitely kept as part of whatever dynamic I was in.

However, even though I was carving out that niche for myself, I flipped back and forth between thinking that my being kinky was ok, and feeling really scared about it, wondering if it was merely a way for me to force someone else into harming me instead of me cutting. I know I used to talk excitingly about kink and poly to my parents, who were polite enough to me about it but were pretty concerned, both for me and my impulsiveness, but also how that affected the people I was dating at the time. I think I expected them to take my being kinky and poly with the same grace as being bisexual... but I didn't really explain what that all meant until much, much later. My parents, to be fair, were more concerned with the fact I was meeting strangers from the internet, not what I was meeting them for- something not very common at the time. I was, again, lucky that my experiences meeting people from the internet were really, really good. I think I implemented more care in how I conducted these things than I told them... I suspect that I needed them to worry about me to feel sure they cared (we had a fucked up relationship til pretty recently).

I didn't think that there was something wrong with kink- more that there was something wrong with *me*, and the kink was a way of processing that. My gay friends at the time really looked down on that aspect of me, and I learned to keep quiet about it. I definitely did engage in dangerous behaviours- my poor decision to have a play date without a safecall was one, and one that was traumatic, and not repeated. I really got in touch with consequences, and the fact that not everyone in this scene was in it for healthy reasons.

I also tried hooking a couple of times when I was 18. I met people online and did it that way. It was stupid, impulsive, and dangerous- I was very lucky I had decent guys and no problems with the cops. That's what I was worried about, more often than not- the police. I figured if a john freaked out I would beat the hell out of him, but that the police were more of a concern. You know? I still feel that way.

All that said, it was coming out to the scene in Boston and volunteering at events that led me into a kink situation that was safe and that let me grow a great deal. I had done some kink stuff online, here and there- from 17-19 I had a Dom/sub relationship with a Scot that was pretty good for me overall (he really did stop me from cutting)- but not very much in person. And actually, there was a part of me that was nervous I was just doing it for attention, as I had done other things prior. I wondered if I would ever settle down, if I would ever find something that would stop my restlessness.

I did, in service submission. I was incredibly lucky, at 19, to meet a poly household that welcomed me in as an occasional serve submissive, and I watched and learned. I had always struggled with meditation, visualization, etc, because I struggled to stay still for any length of time. But within service, I found peace. And in this household, I realized that you could be kinky, and poly, and queer, and it didn't *have* to be dramatic or difficult.

Still waiting for that to work out, though. But hey... I know I do it to myself. I still, now, after 6 years, struggle to slow down.

Anyway. Sidetracked.

It's interesting, looking over my old blogs, from 2003, when I was 19. I was just taking a few tentative steps as a Domme, and it was a struggle, let me tell you- I had never been too into pain, other than that particular sharp kind, so causing someone else that pain seemed... weird. But I loved this guy- very, very intensely. Obsessively, I later realized, and codependently- but it didn't seem like that at the time.

They don't tell you that polyamory means you can be codependent on multiple people! At once! Yay!

Still, I was struggling then as a Domme with some of the same things I struggle with now:

"the reason i felt so comfortable Topping (my pothead, California poet-submissive) was because he constantly gave me feedback about me being in charge... he certainly wasn't a well-behaved boy all the time either, but he would constantly validate my position.
i understand what it was (this other guy, my geeky, kinky friend) was trying to do, by pulling my hair in the club and trying to get me to fight him... but it really upset me. here i am just starting out as a Top, not really sure, anxious... and then he humiliates me in front of people we both know. it didn't get him what he wanted... i just let him do it."

Now, at the time, I thought what I was struggling with was feeling like the Domme. Now, with some confidence under my sleeve, I realize that I'm just not the sort who wants to fight and wrestle a submissive into that state most of the time. I want them to know themselves. I want them to admit what they want and take it. Sort of like my issue with "forced" bi or "forced" femininity- if you want to suck cock, or dress like a woman, just go for it! I'm happy to help, but I'm not going to make you, and thus free you of the responsibility of asking for what you want. It's one of the things that made me disinclined to ply with H, actually- I bear scars from our play, and I'm not into taming a wild beast. I guess the way to put it- I prefer discipline to punishment. Proactive Domming instead of reactive. At the time, I thought that withdrawal and frustration was me sucking at being a Mistress. Now, I just know that's not what floats my boat.

Anyway. How does this link to Calico's blog?

I guess I wanted to re explore my coming out, around 18 years old. Where I was at. Where my head was at. It's interesting to me what was the same, and what was different. I, as an 18 year old, did not look at my body and think beautiful, but rather fat and ugly... and the Scot was truly one of the people who helped me turn that viewpoint around, as did my poly household and the pothead poet. I still thought all these people were exceptions... and actually, I would say I was still stunned that people thought I was sexy until I moved to the UK and started doing sex work. It's really only been recently that I've looked in the mirror and been pretty pleased with myself and my appearance.

The part of Calico's blog that inspired me to relook this part of my past was this, which was her closing statement:

"You learn to turn the childhood ban on “no” around. You love your “no” utterly, foolishly, rather like your parents must have loved that child. And that gives you back your “yes,” the option of asking for things for yourself.

“If you’re _____ you’ll know.” Fill in the the blank: gay, straight, submissive, dominant, even in love. But it’s not a matter of always knowing your place, and selfishly wanting to annex someone else’s territory. You’ve never known your place, if you have even one.

Now that you can ask, what do you ask, anyway? At what point are you grown up enough to know?"

Are you ever? I still don't know. I change, I shift, I grow into things I never would have imagined or dreamed possible.

But upwards. Always upwards.

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