One of the many, many things I love about hanging in k!nk spaces are the continued conversations and evolutions to help refine communication, expand knowledge, and create better scenes. There is constant education around a multitude of topics, from theoretical & philosophy based, to more practical and functional. All of this benefits my personal journey, but also my professional one.
And I want to talk about a fundamental question I learned a few years back when I dabbled in rope that seems simple on the surface, but is actually more complex in some circumstances than you might think…
"Who is it for?"
Now there are a number of important questions to ask before doing a scene with someone…but this one I have found to be of great use in amplifying intentions, and making them more concrete for all involved. And the more you provide this clarity upfront, the greater the results usually are later. (but other stuff is still important too…you still need to discuss & honor boundaries, communicate and check-in throughout, and follow through on the responsibilities you agreed to during negotiation).
And while negotiation tends to be more expected in kink spaces than vanilla ones, it still requires a certain level of communication skills and self-awareness to do that is challenging for people everywhere. We all have patterns and models from our upbringing that influence how we speak to each other, and create a nuance in language that not everyone understands the same. As humans we tend to make assumptions and create expectations for others based on the experiences we have had in life thus far, and in similar circumstances. This disconnects, under the best of circumstances, can hinder having play scenes rise to the level of magic we seek. Under the worst, can cause lasting physical &/or psychological trauma.
This is why having concrete anchors are important, and help provide a clarity and foundation to refer back to.
"Who is it for?" is one of those anchors.
Now don't be fooled by the simplicity of this question…it is not as easy to answer as you might think. This is one of those places where ego likes to try to answer for us. This is one of those places where if we don't recognize if/how ego is influencing our answer, we can get into trouble later… Ego can tell us we are doing something for someone else, often in ways that seem altruistic, while hiding our own wants/needs/desires of the situation. Recognizing our own needs is important, especially when we are trying to answer the question: "who is this for?"
Why do I bring this up? Maybe it is because of the guy I brought home from a wedding* this weekend to just cuddle with, who then proceeded to beg me all night to eat my p*ssy…and how many men I have met who profess to LOVE eating p*ssy, but are not doing it for me (even though that is how they always frame it…wanting to please me, or women in general...) but for themselves. And how this disconnect about who it is for shapes the outcome. These men rarely listen to direction (let alone my body…) because it is not for ME, it is for them.
And it is ok for it to be about them…to own that…and doing so can help find the person that just wants to have that type of partner, and can be in their own headspace while the person "topping" is in theirs. I used to be able to do that when I was younger. I find it more challenging to do now…now that I have the experience of understanding how much more pleasure is derived when partners can be on the same page instead of having two separate fantasies happening, and just using each other's bodies… (oh wait…that last part does sound hot, doesn't it? Yeah, there is a time and place for almost everything in my book, so don't think I am totally against this idea or need sometimes…)
This happens in my work sometimes too. People do things they think are for me that I didn't ask for, or maybe even want, because they have a story in their head they are following…a program (often influenced by ego)...instead of having conversation about what we want to do, what I might enjoy as a gift, and who those actions are actually for… This happens in one one one engagements as well as with couples.
Protip for husbands/male partners: if you are hiring me to help your female partner explore another side of herself, then have HER contact me…have HER make the choice about who you are getting together with. DO NOT SURPRISE HER, but also do not make the choice for her. If she asks you to, you should question who the activity/exploration is really for… If she is not an active participant in the decision making and negotiation, it leaves HUGE holes for regret and other problems to arise later.
A lot of this is cultural programming too…that men are just supposed to know what women want, and that all women want certain things. Old programs say that it is romantic to surprise people with gifts they didn't ask for...which can also translate to offering pleasure a partner didn't ask for… If the purpose is to truly do it FOR THEM, for the other person you seek to please, then ask them what they want, and find something that you both enjoy doing for the amount of time that works for you both, and/or as long as it continues to be pleasurable for the person the act is supposed to be for. When they are done, and if the act is for them, then you are done.
And no, I did not let wedding guy eat my p*ssy. My panties never came off, and his begging (and lack of actual cuddling as discussed) made him a hard no on wanting to try and date him, even though he was 6'5" and a rugged, handsome guy (who also does amazing handcrafted woodworking). Height/physical looks does not win out with me when someone just wants to run the program in their head, not recognize who they are really doing it for…
If you have never asked yourself this question before, start asking it before any activity you decide to do, and see how it shapes the awareness of your intentions. And not just in the bedroom, but even otherwise. I think this simple exercise can have great impact on recognizing our intentions, examining them, and investigating how much of our actions involving others, and assumed to be for others, are what they want too? I am going to start practicing this more myself, as I find it especially useful as a caretaker for my parent, who I have at times done things thinking they were for them, but really were about my own ego, and what I thought I needed to be doing instead of asking what they really want. It has application in many parts of our lives if we think about it…with many opportunities to deepen our relationships with this simple awareness:
Who is it for??
*The wedding was an intimate commitment ceremony. Buffet, no dancing, 4 hours total...just for clarity. I only went because they are both dear friends, it was low key, and current cases around here are down. Had this happened in December or January, I would not have attended.