I was a prude. (This may be a surprise to you, reading this blog and seeing our twitter feeds and such, but trust me. It’s true.) [SSC: I wouldn’t say *prude*–but you were raised in a family that redacted Airport (the book). Gives you a different perspective.] This is fine on the surface, but it doesn’t lend itself to working through life as a married couple and keeping things interesting “in the bedroom.” (As an aside, euphemisms… ugh.) In fact, it had become a huge issue – our sex life had gone pretty much out the window and I didn’t have the slightest idea how to talk about it (or even that I should be talking about it).
Hey, we were evolved – we had a magic wand! [SSC: And have had one since college…yes, they had they in the Dark Ages.]
We had had fits and starts trying to play with things – some of the D/s stuff – and it was fun. Along the way, we somehow found out that a natural Dominant/Submissive structure was forming. When I tried to be dominant (we started off alternating), she wouldn’t have as much fun, and I was wigging out doing it. [SSC: You know the term *hot mess*? Yeah…]
As Charmer mentioned, we had this initial discussion over certain frozen drinks at a restaurant. For me, it was an epiphany that she was interested too – and didn’t get offended talking about it. Silly, perhaps.
As I started looking into stuff, I’d start with silly things and she’d come back with “that’s nice, but did you see this CB thing?” And then she’s show me pics of steel and we’d snicker about it, but then it morphed into “holy crap, that’s cool…”
And then I found Thumper’s blog (link). Wow. Belle was into it. Thumper was into it. THEY TALKED ABOUT STUFF. Experimented. Things went right. Things went wrong. I devoured that blog. He talked about things in real words and terms. The denial. The devices. It suddenly became real. Became a thing. We talked more. She even read his stuff off and on. [SSC: I love the comment. You know, she might read stuff sometimes if the moon is right and… I just didn’t bookmark pages for future reference.] We talked about it.
This is the genesis of the change. Talking. Then we ordered the first CB device. A lot of people say that just getting a device will change your life. Well, for a prude like me, it just forced us to talk. If ever I wanted more – wanted out – wanted to try something, the simple fact is, I had to talk about it with Charmer. This was huge. And, get this, she wanted to do things too. We didn’t realize it at the time, but this was a foundational change in our relationship.
We transitioned from me not talking about our sex life to our talking about it casually and consistently. With the cage, we both realized we liked more evolved things – and we started actively digging for ideas, things to try. At this point, we started devouring websites, blogs, just about anything we could find.
With the cage on, and with my new-found discussion of things, I found that I just didn’t know enough to know if I was doing things “right” so I started studying stuff too to find new … ahem … approaches. Books, blogs, videos. Whatever I could get my hands on to learn new things. If she’s going to be open to doing new things with and for me, I wanted to be damn sure and do the same. [SSC: I am the happy recipient of all of his research. And believe me…he does love to research.]
She also found that she really loved being in charge and I really loved being NOT in charge. I didn’t even really know it was “submissive” at the time. I hadn’t stumbled into that yet.
But then we started reading more about FLR. About D/s stuff – about things we wanted to try and realizing that we were just fine embracing the dynamic. Then I found Ferns (link) writing and in particular, her book. It was like (and I’ve told her this before) she was in my brain, talking to me, describing for me what was going on, albeit from the Domme side of things, but the “why” and “how” suddenly made sense and, more importantly, pushed all sorts of buttons for me that I didn’t even know existed. Heck I don’t even know if I had buttons.
We talked more. We tried more. We had to talk about it even more because the only way anything at all was going to happen was if she unlocked me, and we had to talk about that too. We finally got to the point where nothing was off limits to talk about and we just went at it.
We discovered that erotic pain has interesting affects on us. It powers her. It drives me. We discovered impact play, more strict restraints.
We started talking FLR.
I’ve always been a “chivalry” guy. I think it’s really important – open doors, she seats first, etc. So FLR was instantly interesting. That, plus the D/s stuff we’d found and how it really fit well. We decided to try it. Dabble in it a bit. [SSC: Dabble? We’ve never dabbled in anything. Go big or go home.]
As we did, things on the play side started to venture into stricter things. You’ve probably read about some of it here – from sharp things to impact to locations to… whatever. Our playtime had effectively morphed into this really actively evolving, fun thing.
We found as we moved forward into the FLR that times with the cage, vs. times without the cage were changing. Attitudes were different when the cage was on, vs. when it wasn’t. Sure, mostly my attitude, and I’ve grown to manage that. But hers too. It’s almost a sense that has developed.
The other thing that came along with the must stronger D/s and FLR dynamic was that we grew even closer. We’ve continued to evolve as a married couple in ways that can only be traced to knowing so much more about each other in incredibly intimate ways – from how our minds work to our relationship to our play time – it’s all been “leveled up.”
We have stumbled mightily along the way.
- I learned that my body had a certain cycle after an orgasm. In short, I was a pain in the ass in a big way about 1.5-2 days afterward. I would NEVER have recognized this without the discipline of the cage. I posted about it here on the blog. In the comments, you’ll see that I was set straight, that I didn’t need to just say “oh well,” but rather that I needed to step up my control… immediately. I have fixed that issue, but it took some time to recognize and then watch out for in order to do so.
- I have learned that I can get grumpy at times when denial extends longer. Shocker, I know, but I recognize this and now (where I didn’t before) work very hard to control that response.
- I’ve screwed up on the FLR side of things many, many times. I have done things that were inappropriate responses in the absolutes of FLR. I have had to both make up for those where possible, and work to understand myself better about whatever my problem was so I could work to prevent it. I’m still a work in progress on this, but I like to think I’m well down that road now. We’ll have more on this in a later post.
- I’ve screwed up on the D/s side of things even more times. You can’t say “she’s in charge and this is what you want, unless you want to change that in the moment and have her do what you want…” and still call it D/s or FLR. And yet, that’s what I tried to do too many times. I have learned to back off – to truly follow and enjoy it.
- My head is constantly on the move thinking about “what if this” and “what if that…” one of my biggest challenges, by far, has been “why do I like this stuff” (and the corollary “what is wrong with me“) This can be especially true in the aftermath of a particularly intense scene (I hate that word). When we’ve just been through this intense thing we’ve done, and I’ve loved every. single. second of it, afterward, I still struggle to not try to understand – to just let it be. To be good with it. This is really hard sometimes. [SSC: He does love his analysis…]
We are still learning. But for me, for us, chastity was the start. It wasn’t this magic potion; it takes work. It takes communications. It takes doing the hard introspection and thoughts about what I want and like and what I can do for my partner in a very active way. And some of it is a very tough, involved and intricate bit of stuff to be done.
But it’s worth it. I wouldn’t go back for the world. I am so thankful for the reboot. For the community. For the people we’ve met (and are working to meet in person) and for the blogs and resources out there.
It’s astonishing that I had no idea all of this existed. But I’m so glad we know now, thanks to that initial thought to get the cage. [SSC: And from me–Happy Male Chastity Day for everyone who is participating just today or every day…]