Tag Archives: safety

Playing with Fire

I am not the easiest person to get close to anymore.

There was a time when it was much easier; where conversation and connection was a casual thing and I didn’t worry about what could happen or how I would get hurt or.. any of that.

Time and trauma are funny things. I’m 27 now. I’ve kept this blog since I was 22. In those five years I have changed and grown so much. I remember starting this journey unable to fathom polyamory and having insecurities left, right, and sideways about it. Now.. I can’t imagine not being polyamorous. Only choosing one partner? HOW? They all fill such different needs.

I can’t imagine my life without kink either, though there are times when I’ve tried. Lately my needs haven’t been met in the kink department. Part of that is my own doing; life has gotten in the way to a large extent and having spoons and capacity to get to events is.. hard. I’ve had prior commitments and partners going through some bumps that required emotional support that overshadowed my need for a good beating. Part of it is because trusting people is very, very difficult for me these days.

Trauma changes you. PTSD has left its mark on me in the form of a brain that is not neuro-typical, and it makes dating, especially in the kinky world, harder. It also doesn’t help that I can play very heavy when in the right headspace and that can scare new tops. I have a very, very sweet partner that’s the closest to vanilla I’ll ever go these days; a big bear of a man by the name of Rowan. He’s a cowboy, and I ride him frequently (saving lots of horses, ba dum bum tish). The sex is fantastic. We wrestle, and bite, and fuck each other senseless..but he’s not comfortable choking me. Or hitting me. Or pulling my hair. The poor man offered to earlier today when he saw I was close to squirming from lack of heavy play and I had to explain that the bottom doesn’t enjoy having the crap beaten out of them unless the top enjoys themselves as well. It’s that sadist’s grin I always look for. And my sweet Rowan is no sadist. He’s a fantastic human that can handle me when I break and that has a very very pretty penis. But he’s no sadist.

A man that is, and a heavy one at that, is Cal. As long as we have known each other we have only played a handful of times, for so many reasons. There’s always this wee bit of tension between Cal and I; words left unsaid that will likely never be said. We circle one another like predator and prey, one or the other lunging forward from time to time and initiating something more than our typical friendship. After the mentorship, and after one of Cal’s longer-term crazy ex’s, he became one of my safe people. He had no interest in me, I thought, and so there was no chance of partnership. No chance of him seeing more of my broken pieces than he already has. There are gaps in our history of knowing one another. In those gaps.. I changed.

It was a few weeks ago. I was at BaGG. Ryan left early because of a very long day and I was left to my own devices. This typically means head pets and drinks from Cal (of the non-alcoholic variety these days. 9-5 necessities).

I was.. poorly behaved. Venting about Ryan and some of the on-again off-again issues we had been having. Ryan and I are going on two years of dating. It’s not new and shiny anymore, and I am the partner that sees the most. It’s a good thing and a bad thing, but that’s a conversation for another day.

Returning to the current conversation, Cal and I flirted, as we often do when I’m at BaGG and there’s alcohol. He offered to beat me. I said yes.

I shouldn’t have. Not with alcohol in his system and me already worn and without a partner there. This is very much on me.

The scene itself was good, as our few scenes often are. I ended up on the spanking bench, which is much less enjoyable for me than the cross because I can take less, but I wanted catharsis. Cal hits HARD. He’s not afraid to be mean. Sometimes I need that, I admit. He says the right sadist things, like how he loves seeing my tears. He pushed me to breaking. I fell, and called yellow when I felt too much. Outside of a couple hits that just..didn’t land right because of how my frame hits the horse it was exactly what I needed but was afraid to ask for.

The aftercare.. was on me. I started crashing HARD, and managed to crash midway through a heavy conversation with Cal. My body typically gets very cold after a heavy scene. I physically shiver and need contact or a warm place to come back down. I felt the shivers, felt my level of fatigue, and realizing that I didn’t have capacity to communicate that I needed more aftercare I did the next best thing. I vocalized that I needed to go.

I have my goodbye routine pretty well down at BaGG. When I’m at max capacity I go and I find James. I give him a hug and a nuzzle, tell him to get his stubborn ass home, and I peace out.

I was waiting for James for that goodbye and could see him, finally. I had to wait. Cal was waiting too. He had wanted to walk me out. I saw him behind me for a moment and then felt an arm around my neck.

Normally I like choking. It’s one of my favorite things, along with hair pulling and face fucking and hard smacks to the ass and… you get it. Because of where I was mentally it was NOT a good thing. It was a shock to my system that thought the scene was long over and needed to go to bed and caused my crash to intensify. After the choke Cal crushed me against his chest. Normally this is also a very good thing, but I could see James. I could see him but couldn’t get to him, couldn’t get out of Cal’s arms. Panic grew. He finally let me go and I ran, frazzled, out of the club. At home I broke, horribly, with one of my partners holding me while my brain fractured into too many pieces. Eventually I crawled into bed at about 3 am somewhat put back together.

I had a date with Ryan the next evening. He already knew that the night had ended rough and checked in with me in the morning to see how I was. I was at a stage where I was having issues with words, even to him. It happens when I break sometimes; words feel like they’re trapped in quick sand in my mind. It’s so difficult to vocalize and I fight the urge to shut down and turtle.

That night I curled up in his lap and we talked through the evening, even the parts where I vented about him. Ryan listened intently and asked the right questions, a frown forming on the face when I told him about the choke at the end of the night. He asked if I had reached out to Cal and told him any of this yet. I answered honestly that I hadn’t. That I didn’t plan to. My brain did a thing and it wasn’t his fault.

It was Ryan that pointed out that alcohol may have played a part and misreading the signals that I was done for the night, and possibly the removal of alcohol would make for a much safer scene and aftercare. I couldn’t argue. Cal and I have done one scene at the Citadel together and though it was heavy and my height makes things more challenging for him it was absolutely fucking wonderful; heavy impact that made me fly with a force that I only ever have gotten from James. From a safe person.

Ryan is my Daddy, my protector. He asked me what I needed to feel safe around Cal. I made up the rule of removing alcohol from play, and contacted him the next day.

… To say it didn’t go well would be an understatement.

Cal has the ability to make you feel like a shining star when his full attention is on you. He also has the ability to make any human feel damaged, or broken, or worthless. My hurt ended up hurting him in such a way that he through up walls so quickly I got whiplash. He said that we were incompatible. That clearly he had misread the signs and the scene didn’t go well. That I had chosen to blow him off and not tell him what was going on the day before. There were other things I really don’t feel like rehashing and I’m not to a place where I can scroll through the messages and give ya’ll direct quotes. I got thrown away again, as I have been in the past. But he wanted to be friends. With slight censorship to our conversations. So, friends but not really.

I was surprised how much the rejection from Cal hurt. I knew I loved him. I don’t think I realized until then how much I actually wanted him. How much I wanted him to want me as well. There was a part of me that I think saw the play as a positive thing; something that could even become regular. I had often debated asking Cal if we could try going on an actual date and drop the circling act. Just.. dive in and see what happened. He was the first one in the kink world to notice me. That has always meant something. He’s also the only one that I’ve let throw me away over, and over, and over again. Because he was special. Because he mattered. Because he was safe, and I loved him even though I saw he was very flawed. I do not idolize him. At this point I know Cal way too well to. I call him on his bullshit at times.

I called him on this. I said something akin to he was too busy kicking his own ass to actually here what had happened and what I was asking him for. When he kept going I asked for space. He kept going again. I asked him for more space. I asked him not to reply. And control freak that he is, he replied.

I remember staring at the last message, crying, and throwing my phone.

I haven’t been to BaGG in two weeks.

Ryan has no interest in going anymore, which breaks my heart on a couple levels. He has so much going on that we haven’t played. In that time my brain has been eating me alive thanks to other things, always coming back to the fact that I’m broken. That I’m defective. There was..more hurt than I want to admit from that exchange between Cal and I. There was a lot of disappointment and a lack of trust.

He will catch me if I fall, so long as he didn’t cause that fall.

Today he texted me, a sweet check in. And I don’t know how to respond to it. Someone that used to be one of the safest people to me in my mind hurt me.. a lot. Not in a bad scene. Not in a bad drop or aftercare. But after. When I said things had gone wrong for me and this was the boundary that I needed to feel safe.

I won’t have Ryan with me at BaGG next week. And I need to get past this fear and just.. go. I feel frozen. Overwhelmed. There are no spoons. Life is pummeling me and there’s no relief in sight. I don’t know when the next time I will play will be. The number of people that are safe for me continue to dwindle. My world continues to shrink as I try so hard not to collapse under the weight of needs that I cannot fill for myself.

I gave into the temptation to play with fire. I got burned. And I don’t know where to go from here. If there’s anywhere to go. I don’t know what Cal sees when he looks at me anymore, or what he thought about me before all this.

I guess I’ll never know now.

Yours, hurting but slowly mending,

Rene

The Man That Came Back

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I love Rocky Horror nights.

I grew up with Rocky Horror. I’ve gone to shows in five different cities across the country, helped out in a few crews, had a couple very brief appearances as Colombia on one cast when I was skinny enough to pull it off, and know every single damn thing you’re supposed to scream at the screen by heart.

I love Rocky Horror nights even more when they’re James’s Rocky Horror nights. His friends are awesome, the show is entertaining, it gets me to actually talk a little bit to people.. and I get actual alone time with my boyfriend.

I enjoy BaGG with James. I enjoy sitting in the back of the Citadel with him watching him take photos. I enjoy Wicked Grounds with him… But time alone with him is a special treat. It’s what makes my heart race and gets those stupid, silly grins plastered on my face, for no other reason other than we talk.. No filter, no one else butting in, just us. We go off on tangents, and smile, and laugh, and have inside jokes, and it makes Rocky Horror fifty thousand times more enjoyable.

And I LOVE Rocky Horror as is.

And so, at the end of the night of giggles and snuggles and kisses..and a little bit of kinky fuckery (because, let’s face it, it’s us) I said goodnight to my Sir and slipped inside smiling. It was late, but my landlord keeps odd hours, and it was also the first of the month. So I ran upstairs to give him my rent check.

He was stoned off his ass..and I’m not saying that in a mean way. I am very 4/20 friendly. But he..was no longer coherent. He told me when I gave him my check that what he was about to say had nothing to do with the check. He said he grew up in this house, that he had had a hard week, and that things were changing. That, because of a feeling, he was giving me my 60 days notice. He would meet with me tomorrow to discuss with me.

I was stunned. Shell shocked. I briefly begged for my apartment back out of sheer terror before my landlord sent me downstairs.

I vaguely remember fumbling for my phone. I don’t call James. I text him, quite happily, on a regular basis and poke him if he gets lost in Workland too long, but I don’t call. We’re both awkward as hell on the phone, we see each other a couple times a week normally, text a lot… I don’t call. Somehow, in my shell-shocked state I called him.

I was shaking, and crying. I needed him… That is a sickening feeling for me. Needing someone. I take great pride in being able to function perfectly well on my own. I clean up my own messes. I keep my life together. I get by on the skin of my teeth sometimes but dammit I get by. Normally the pride and that little bit of logic that I have keeps me from doing things like dialing my boyfriend’s number and sobbing into the phone until he turns around and drives back to my notapartment. Normally I wouldn’t have let him see me sobbing at all.

I have no memory of that lovely gap of time between after the phone call and before he came back. The next thing I remember after calling him was clinging to him and sobbing. He didn’t shrink, he didn’t drive away. He held me.. he calmed me down. I went from being alone and scared to being surrounded by warmth and safety and a calm voice telling me logical next steps. Post on Fetlife. Go on Craigslist. Post on Facebook. Put up specifics for him to re-post.

He let me ramble. I hiccuped and cried and shook and got his shirt all wet..I kept him up later when he had to go home for breakfast. He snuggled and kissed and nuzzled and talked to me in that voice that turns me into a melted puddle of warm and fuzzy. The voice that only comes out when we’re on our own. It’s the tone that goes along with things like kissing me on top of the head or pulling me to his chest, so that my head rests right under his chin…

When I would have worked myself up again he had me meet his eyes, focus on him. “Hey. It’s going to be alright. You know why? Because I said so.”

That was about where it dawned on me, in my sniffily state as I stood in his arms. He came back. He actually came back. I looked up at him, a little in awe, and ask him why.

He shrugged, his arms still around me. “You called…”

That’s never happened to me before… someone coming back like that.. The closest I came to a crisis with Kane was finding a cockroach in my bed and freaking out. I had called him, just wanting to hear his voice so that I could calm down and he sent me to voicemail, because it was too late and he needed his sleep for work tomorrow. James had to drive over an hour back to his place.. It was nearly dawn as it was. He could have told me just to go to sleep. My mind would have calmed down eventually, just as it did with the cockroach. Ewwww cockroach.

James came back.. He didn’t run when I freaked out. He calmed me down, gave me logical next steps, and made my racing mind slow down enough for me to actually see that it would be okay.

Something like this is… stressful, intimidating, and trying. I fall into routines really easily and like the comfort of routines. It’s easy to become complacent. To get used to a ‘normal’, and I admit that I have. I like my dinky little apartment… but there are some serious pros to moving. Poe no longer constantly getting fleas (and by constantly I mean he’s gotten four flea baths, been professionally groomed, the apartment has been bombed 3 times, he’s had 3 doses of Advantage and wears a flea collar… the struggle is real), my boyfriend not having to pop off a wheel to get in and out of my place.. Actually being able to shower with my boyfriend. Him not getting into a fight with my bathroom every time he comes over…

Dare I hope for a bath tub? Dare I dream? Ohhh bubble baths from time to time would be so nice…

And a non-psycho landlord who isn’t half out of his mind most of the time would be a huge plus.

I hope for positive things. Good changes.

Now to continue packing up my apartment, stalking Craigslist, and searching Fetlife for more kink friendly housing.

And just because Poe and I could really use a new home.. I’m looking for a room in the San Francisco Bay area. About $1000 a month budget. Must be cat friendly because of Poe. Kink friendly and wheelchair accessible both pluses. `If anyone knows of anything… Contacting me is definitely okay.

It’ll all be okay.. I have faith.. And in reality I am a very lucky girl.. I love who I belong to. I actually have a man who cares enough to come back when I need him…

How could things not end up being okay?

Yours, as always,

~Rena