Wednesday, February 27, 2013

the illusion of choice

I'm attempting to write a post on our version of living a 24/7 dynamic with two little children in the house.  It's harder than I thought it would be, I keep going off on tangents.  One of them was about choice.  A few days ago this conversation took place (which I shared in my post "sprinkles"):

Vincent: No. Nope. Don't speak.  You don't have a choice.
Me: But! Ugh, I don't ever have any choices!
Vincent: *grinning maniacally* And now you're finally getting it.
Me: *sputters but stays silent* 

We were playing around at the time, in a way.  He was teasing me, but not joking, if that makes sense.

So, as I was attempting to write the other post, I began to think about choice, my choices.  It didn't take long for me to realize that ultimately the only choice I have is to submit or not. 

This doesn't mean I don't make choices on a daily basis, but those choices are, in reality, only allowed by Vincent.  He could, at any time, make an absolute decision at which point my only choice is to submit or not.  Although, there is no punishment if I chose not to submit, the consequence is a rift in our relationship and Vincent's displeasure.  Those consequences are never worth getting my own way.

Often even the choices he allows me to make are still run by him, based on an expressed opinion by him or on what I believe he would have me choose.

Yesterday I told him I'd realized this and he was surprised that I'd not noticed this before.  I think he's just Mr. Sneaky, subtly getting me to this point so that by the time I realized my lack of choice it would be what I wanted, not something I would try and fight.

Lack of choice, or expression of control, doesn't have to be exhibited with asking permission to use furniture, or go to the bathroom, or seeking permission to wear clothes.  Although, of course, there is nothing wrong with having that as a part of your dynamic, some might even need that.  Sometimes, though, expression of control (my lack of choice) can be much more subtle, but still just as effective.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

my very hard limit

I promised a post on my biggest fear, my hardest of all my hard limits... but I'm finding it really difficult to write.

I don't want it to be taken the wrong way.

I guess it would best be started like this:

I know that anal play can be safely and consensually used as punishment, but it is personally my biggest fear.  Please know this is partly based on the context in which I first was made aware of it, and partially drawn from my own views on anal play and all sex.  If you experience or use anal play or sex as punishment in a safe, risk aware, consensual way I have no problem with that.

A while back I was reading some posts on a DD forum where these women were talking about their husbands using anal sex as punishment.  They made it very clear they don't like anal sex, and they talked about it being painful and humiliating.  They also encouraged other wives to submit to it if their husbands decided to use it as punishment.

The way these women wrote, nothing sounded loving or caring, safe or truly consensual, and it scared me.  It's possible that it was loving and caring, and safe and completely consensual, I only know what I read and how I interpretted it.  Either way, even if it is done in a loving, caring, safe, and consensual way it's a very hard limit for me.

First of all, though Vincent has put a small plug in my butt, I have never had anal sex and I am rather scared of it to begin with.  I'm willing to try it, but it would be pushing my limits, and that's with it being an act of passion and sexual fun.  So, to imagine anal sex being used in a punishing way is terrifying to me.

Secondly, very early on in our relationship we made a pact to never use sex against each other.  No denying each other sex in bitterness, anger, or resentment.  No denying sex to get something we want.  No seducing each other for the purpose of getting something we want either.  Sex, we decided, would be reserved as an expression of love, passion, forgiveness, acceptance, connection, sexual need, and anything else positive. (We express all those things quite often, hehe.)  Using anal sex as punishment would break that pact completely.

Edit: As part of the above agreement it has always been implied that sex would be pleasurable for both of us. That doesn't mean I have an orgasm every single time, it just means that if something doesn't really feel good, or it hurts in a bad way (because not all pain is bad) we don't do it. When we do eventually try anal sex, it's already been established by Vincent that if it is not at all pleasurable for me we won't do it, period. So that also figures into my extreme dislike of using anal sex as punishment.

Lastly, my view of punishment is such that, even when done lovingly with great care, it doesn't register that way for me.  If Vincent is displeased with me I immediately seek to right the wrong.  If he chose to punish me I would view that as merely a representation of his displeasure, after which I would still need to do something to regain Vincent's favor.  From what I've seen, many who do use punishment as part of their dynamic, the punishment is the atonement and afterward the wrongdoing is completely forgiven and the relationship restored.  Punishment doesn't do that for me (a big reason it isn't a part of our dynamic).  Therefore, if Vincent ever used anal sex as punishment (which he wouldn't) it would only be an expression of his anger or displeasure and would be a wholly negative experience.

Each dynamic, just like the people involved, is unique.  No two are exactly the same.  For this reason I can see that anal play and anal sex can be used as punishment in a healthy way.  For me, however, it cannot, and thankfully I don't have to ever worry about it!

Friday, February 22, 2013


Here are some of today's D/s moments sprinkled amongst daily life:

While on a walk together, talking about something completely vanilla (but I can't remember what exactly)...

Vincent: No. Nope. Don't speak.  You don't have a choice.
Me: But! Ugh, I don't ever have any choices!
Vincent: *grinning maniacally* And now you're finally getting it.
Me: *sputters but stays silent*

After I pushed his buttons, and we argued, and reconciled with a tickle fight (the children were in bed)...

Vincent: *as he pulls his belt through the belt loops* Turn around.
Me: No! We don't do punishment remember?
Vincent: Well, this is the exception.
Me: But- that's not fair!
Vincent: Do I have to make you turn over?
Me: Yes!
Vincent threatens to whip my leg with the belt, at which point I turn over very quickly. I can't lie, I thoroughly enjoyed it. 

 There was another one, but I've forgotten what really occurred and so I can't share it.

 It's lovely how natural these moments flow into our daily lives with tiny snippets of a conversation, or a fun moment after an argument; they really are just sprinkled in among changing diapers, grocery shopping, picking up toys for the 10 billionth time.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

men beware...

I do not feel submissive today.

I want to rebel. I want to push buttons to see how far I can go, and then I want to push more.

I feel mean.

It's all hormones, I know that, but it doesn't change how I feel. (Stupid late period.)

Of course, because I know better than to let emotions control me I am going to try NOT to push. I will try to be pleasant and submissive, and not mean.

But I can't guarantee anything in this state...

 (Premenstrual Syndrome is not an accurate term.  For me it's the worst right at the beginning of my period, not before.)

Saturday, February 16, 2013

life lately

  • I'm pretty sure our children are having a contest to see which of them can cause Vincent and I to lose the most sleep.  
  • Waffle blocks bring out the kid in me.  Did anyone else grow up playing with those?  My kids love them too and we all have a blast playing with them every morning.
  • I wish I was more carefree.  I'm such a serious person.  I keep everything in little boxes all nice and neat and most of the time that keeps me sane; but sometimes I wish I could let go, live outside the boxes, see the world differently
  • Today I went from hair about this long:

To hair this short:

And that's a small glimpse at my very boring life.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

little love letter

I write little love letters to my husband.  On this day, a day that we celebrate love, I thought I would share a bit of one of those letters with you.

Sitting with me on the couch when I'm sobbing out my frustrations... that's love.

Holding my hand in the car as we run errands... that's love.

Rubbing my back during the labor of birthing our two children... that's love.

Killing spiders that threaten my sanity... that's love.

Hugging me, kissing me, holding me every day, many times each day... that's love.

Thank you.
 As much as I love the grand gestures of love, I appreciate the small ones too.  I am so happy that we are one.  My love for him is so deep and so strong, together we can face and survive anything.

This song, by The Civil Wars, is one of my favorite love songs.  I especially love this video because you can see their love for each other as they sing.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

why we don't use labels

I hadn't planned on blogging today, but then in a reply to Turiya's comment on my last post I got on a little tangent, deleted it, and turned it into a blog post.  I'd also planned on the next post being something funny and lighthearted.  Sorry!

In my post, the journy from there to here, part 2, I talked about how, for a long time, I was putting labels on things I had no business labeling.  If Vincent asked me not to leave dish rags in the sink anymore, for example, I labeled it a rule.  If he took my laptop from me because I was letting our son play with it when he'd asked me not to do that, I labeled it a punishment.

Technically, they could be labeled those things.  Vincent certainly expects that I don't leave dish rags in the sink because he's told me not to.  It isn't a request, it is a command, but Vincent has not labeled it a rule, and there is no consequence to breaking it save his displeasure (which truly is worse than any punishment he would inflict on me).  Having my laptop taken away because I wasn't treating it properly could certainly be a punishment, and it definitely felt like one, but Vincent did not label it as such.

Even now I could technically label some things as rules, and some as punishments.

Always be respectful.
Don't leave the dirty griddle on the floor as a reminder that it needs to be cleaned when you have time.
Don't leave dish rags in the sink.
Don't let the kids have your laptop or Kindle.
And of course, the most recent one, do not drink Mountain Dew.  (It gives me terrible tummy aches, but I love it so much that I ignore the pain and keep drinking it anyway.)

There are more, but I can't think of them all right now.

All of those could be labeled as rules, but they are not rules simply because Vincent has not labeled them as such. Does that make sense?  Some might be okay with going ahead and calling these rules even though they haven't been established specifically as rules because, well, they are technically rules.  For me, however, it's important that I don't.  Vincent will always give me commands, and expect me to follow them, continuously if required; but he would not establish a list of rules.  It's about staying true to the laid back nature of our relationship, our dynamic, our personalities.

There is an exception.  I do have one rule, it was established at the very beginning of this journey, years ago, and has remained.  It is the only command that he established specifically as a rule.

Do not use the vibrator without permission.

It's odd that that is the only rule.  I've definitely tested it a few times.  The consequence has been the vibrator being taken away for a period of time.  But when he commanded this, he specifically said it was a rule, and any time I test it he reestablishes it's status of being a rule.

One other time, much more recently, he posted a piece of paper in the kitchen.  It was titled Kitchen Rules.  I was a little miffed because I thought it meant that he didn't think I was doing a good enough job when I cleaned the kitchen.  He explained that they are just reminders to help me because I was constantly forgetting those things, or too busy to even think of them.  It hung there until my sister came over, saw it, and teased me about it.  It was thrown away after that. (I honestly don't remember who threw it away, him or me, but it didn't really matter.  It wasn't incredibly important.  Half the "rules" were jokes, movie references.)

So, this is why we don't use labels.  It never felt natural for Vincent to use labels, and I don't think he will ever feel comfortable with them, but it doesn't matter.  I know what the "rules" are even if we don't call them rules.  I know he is my Dom, even if we don't use that term.  I know when I'm being punished, even if he doesn't specifically say that's what it is.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

the journey from there to here, part 2

This post doesn't make much sense unless you've read the journey from there to here, part 1.  Go read it, and then come back and read this one.

For a long time I looked for elements of our life that fit into what I thought I wanted.  If there was something specific Vincent told me to do, or not to do, then I labeled it a rule.  If there was a consequence for something I did, it became a punishment. If I could turn something that happened naturally, without labels, into something with a specific D/s label then I did.  I'm not saying I lied, because I didn't; I am saying that instead of finding peace with how our dynamic worked, I would make what happened naturally fit into the little box I wanted it to be in.  We stayed in this place for a while.

Then, we were expecting a daughter.  As the due date approached I began to hate submission.  For a long time I had served Vincent by trying to keep a tidy house, by cooking his meals, and suddenly I was too tired and physically limited to do those things on a regular basis.  I had a condition called Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction, and it was very painful.  There were days I couldn't walk without being in excruciating pain.   With my ability to serve and please him with my service mostly gone, I felt I could no longer call myself a submissive.  Sex was rare and very gentle, (I prefer wild, rough sex), and that left me feeling pretty un-submissive as well.

Around that time I also was made aware of a punishment used by a small group of people and even though I consider myself a very open minded person when it comes to kink, BDSM, and all other forms, I could not be objective regarding this particular discovery.  I tried, but everything about it made me cringe, it made me angry, I couldn't help but hate it.  So, with this new information, with my physical limitations, and the loss of a submissive mindset, I ran.  I squashed any remaining submissive desires, I shut down my blog, and I got rid of any BDSM fiction I had collected over the years. 

 It should be noted here that Vincent would NEVER have used this particular punishment on me, so I didn't have any reason to run like I did, but I already had one foot out the door and this just gave me that one last shove.   I have slowly been able to objectively see that in a safe and consensual relationship this punishment can be used in a way that isn't abusive or mentally detrimental. (No, I'm not going to tell you what this particular punishment is yet.  I'll probably write  a whole other post about it because I want to explain why it's so hard for me to see it as okay for some people when it's… well more than a hard limit for me.)

It was a slow journey back to where we are now.  In the midst of denying my submissiveness I learned what it truly meant to be submissive.  I stopped topping from the bottom.  I let go of the idea that in order to be a true submissive I needed a collar, I needed rules, and I needed punishment when rules were broken.  Vincent is very much in favor of a power exchange dynamic, but he is not that into a list of rules, and does not want to punish me.  I discovered that I don't want a bunch of rules either, and I definitely don't want to be punished.  I do have a strong desire to please and serve him, and I feel immense (non-sexual) pleasure when I do those things successfully.

So, that's where we are now. 

Our dynamic is so integrated into our life.  Titles and terms don't exist for us because they don't need to.    Whatever we are, whatever we do, it's just a part of us.  

Monday, February 11, 2013

the journey from there to here, part 1

I learned about BDSM for the first time by watching The Secretary with James Spader and Maggie Gyllenhaal.  I was 20.  Never having heard of BDSM, and never having watched a movie so completely sexual, it took me several tries to get through all of it.  I almost didn't watch the whole thing, but I was curious and I let my curiosity spur me on.

Side note: I hate that "curiosity" omits the "u" in curious.  I constantly spell "curiosity" wrong because of this.  It just doesn't make any sense.  And I hate spelling words wrong.

Perhaps part of my curiosity was that, like Lee, I had been a cutter.  It was still something I struggled with at the time.  Actually, I still do every now and then.  I'd gotten addicted to the pain and I craved it, but no one understood, everyone was horrified, so I did my best not to cut anymore.  So the fact that she was able to stop cutting because this dominant man had commanded her to, and had offered her something to replace it was fascinating to me. (I realize this is a fictional story, but it was an idea that greatly appealed to me.)  So, feeling like I was doing something completely taboo, I began to research BDSM, and I was never once disgusted by this whole new world. Shocked yes, disgusted no.  I was just so fascinated and it pulled at the submissive in me that I had been unaware of until then.

Slowly I became braver about my explorations.  I found BDSM fiction and devoured it; I learned about collars, floggers, whips, bondage, wax play, objectification, and so much more.  Vincent and I had been dating for a year before I watched The Secretary, and it would be another 2 years before I would tentatively begin to talk to him about this whole lifestyle that had captured me.  In fact, I began to bring it up in small, very tame, doses a month or two before we got married.  At that time he didn't really seem interested, although it didn't repulse him, but his lack of interest was devastating to me. Still, since he wasn't repulsed, I slowly got braver and braver, and shared more and more with him.

And then I did something incredibly stupid.  I actually hate admitting that I did this because looking back on it I see how absolutely ridiculous it was, and completely NOT in line with how this sort of relationship works and I am incredibly embarrassed by it.  

About a year after we'd been married I bought a necklace, a dog tag necklace, one side of the tag was engraved with Sweet Little Monster, and the other side said Property of {insert Vincent's real name}.  By this time we had played around a tiny bit with bondage, but that was the extent of our kink.  The necklace was a desperate attempt at asking Vincent to collar me, to make me his submissive.  I wanted him to see the necklace and find his inner dominant.  It was also an attempt at reconnecting because at only 1 year into marriage we were living separate lives side by side. That didn't happen and I was so disappointed.  Everything fell apart after that.

Many months later, after some major mistakes on both our ends, we finally did reconnect.  I was a few months pregnant with our son when Vincent agreed to give BDSM, specifically dominance and submission, some serious consideration.  This is about the time that I began to blog as Alice.  I thought I knew what I wanted.  I thought I wanted rules, a collar, and punishment, and in order to get that I topped from the bottom a lot.  At first Vincent did try and give me what I thought I wanted, but since I wanted it for all the wrong reasons and he wasn't really into those things, it didn't work and I was still disappointed.  Eventually, we settled into a semblance of D/s, but I was still doing a lot of topping from the bottom, and I still longed for more than he was giving me.

To be continued...

Sunday, February 10, 2013

i have no pants

I want to send a quick shout out to Turiya.  The other day I was struggling a little with the idea of blogging again and she encouraged and helped me.  I was worried I didn't have anything of importance to say, and I expressed concern over not really fitting into any label.  She reminded me that blogging is firstly for yourself.  It's hard for me to think of blogging in that way, about it being for myself, because I could do the same thing in a private journal.  Blogging is public.  We put it out for others to read.  I'm not going to lie, I want others to read and comment just as I read and comment on other blogs. But she is right, I shouldn't blog if I'm not blogging for myself first and foremost.

She also reminded me that this thing we do is always so different for everyone, I don't need a label.  And she encouraged me by telling me that people are searching for real life examples of couples with kids that live a power exchange dynamic 24/7.  Then, after I decided I did want to re-enter this blog world, she helped me find the right names to use, and the right blog title.  Giving her full credit, she came up with Vincent for my husband (which he likes, and approved), and she came up with Peacefully Conquered.  Lastly, she introduced my blog on her own blog, which was so sweet. So, thanks again my friend!


And now I want to talk about something that has been on my mind lately.  It's actually expressed in a phrase above, "power exchange dynamic 24/7".  That sounds really intense.  Do you know what I picture when I see a phrase like that?  A sub who spends her days wearing a collar, possibly naked if there aren't kids around, and the Dom is always dominant.  She must ask for permission to sit, to speak, to eat, to do anything. There is no relaxing into every day life in that picture.  It's a complete fantasy for, well most likely everyone who has little kids at least, but I don't know that for sure.  I don't see how it's practical, or possible, but it might be for some and I applaud them for being able to make something like that work. There is nothing wrong with that sort of dynamic for certain, I just want to be clear about that, in case I wasn't.

For us, a 24/7 power exchange dynamic is mostly expressed in playful antics, teasing comments, and stolen moments.  There were several of these moments sprinkled throughout our day yesterday.  Vincent teasing me about needing a spanking when I was being overly defensive this morning.  A little bit of dominance in the kitchen when he pushed me against the wall, kissing and touching me in the afternoon. A quick, light swat on my bottom with a wooden spoon.  Some fun wrestling in the evening when he teased me about how I have to do as he says because he has the authority.  (I smiled and teased him back saying that I reject his authority and he promptly informed me that if that was the case I didn't get to wear clothes.  "We'll see who the authority is in this house then," he said.  We wrestled a bit, playfully, as he tried to take my jeans off and I tried to keep them on.  Finally I gave in and admitted he held the authority.  Though I teased him exactly the same way a few minutes later and ended up without pants.)

Most of the time it's a bunch of little things that are so embedded in who we are as a couple that I don't even notice them.  It doesn't take effort to do these things.  It's natural, it's fun, it's us just living life.  That is our 24/7 power exchange most of the time, and it is not intense, nor anything like the picture in my head.  I love our little moments, our wrestling, our playful antics, our stolen kisses (and more) in the kitchen.

There is more to the power exchange, certainly, and though he doesn't really punish me there have been occasions where I've been sent to our room to calm down, think, return to a submissive attitude before seeking him out and apologizing.  I'll save the details of those things until a later time.   For now just laugh with me because I was crazy enough to yell, "I reject your authority!" and got my pants stolen because of it.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

a is for alice and alexandria

It seems like a very long time ago that I was blogging under the name Alice at Curiouser and Curiouser.  That blog has been deleted for... well, I think it's been about a year. It feels like much longer.  Since then I have changed, I have grown, so has my husband (formerly referred to as Chess, and henceforth referred to as Vincent), and as a result our dynamic in this lifestyle has grown.  I am no longer Alice wandering through Wonderland.  This is why I come back now as Alexandria, or Alex.

When I was blogging as Alice I was searching.  I knew only one thing for certain, I am a submissive.  Everything else needed to be explored.  I didn't know what I needed, even if at times I thought I did.  I certainly didn't know what Vincent wanted, or needed.  Towards the end, instead of finding my way, I had lost it.  A lot of that was life, though there were other factors.  I had a baby on the way, and a toddler to keep up with.  Many of the things I wanted at that time were impossible for us simply because life did not permit them.  At the very end, when I stopped blogging, I began to deny my submissive nature.

It wasn't until months later that I began to be open to the idea again.  Still, I had a journey to take, and it was a slow one for me.  It began by simply recognizing that BDSM still piqued my interest, especially the idea of submission.  Dare I admit this happened by reading Fifty Shades of Grey?  Now, those of you have read the books know that the heroine, Ana, is not really submissive.  She enjoys submitting sexually for the most part, but outside of that she really isn't submissive at all.  I remember being so frustrated with her when she would defy Christian.  To me her defiance was blatant disrespect and I felt so badly for Christian.  Anyway, despite my rekindled interest I still wasn't ready to call myself a submissive again.

Another few months passed, my interest grew during that time, and eventually I realized that try as I might to deny what I am, that part of me would never go away.  As I accepted this I began to see that despite my insistence that I was not submissive, the dynamic between Vincent and I had not dissolved.  No, in fact it had grown into something much more real than it ever had been.

Slowly I settled back into submission, accepting it.  Even then, however, Vincent and I never discussed these changes or what they meant.  We didn't really need to.  I needed no definition.  This was simply how we lived our life.  I still don't need a definition.  I thought for a bit that I did if I wanted to blog again, but I don't.  I don't want to use terms that we don't use, or definitions we don't use, though as I share our life you're free to come to your own conclusions.