Monday, March 23, 2009

Examining Desire (Part 1)

Why am I the way I am?  It is something that I have spent years wondering, easily more than half my life.  The standard reasons given by those who don’t get it, that I am merely reacting to having been abused or acting out the patriarchal script I was raised with, really don’t apply to me.  I was raised in a subculture intent on examining and deconstructing patriarchy , and I had fantasies of bondage and submission long before I ever experienced any type of abuse.  

Actually, I’ve been this way for as long as I can remember.  As long as I have been aware of my sexuality, I have known that it is inextricably linked to things that I was supposed to find distasteful, disgusting, or frightening.  The first real sexual fantasy I ever had was of being tied down and forced to orgasm.  I was less than 10 years old, ashamed, and terrified that there was something horribly wrong with me.  Before that, before I even recognized it as sexual, it was still there.  I remember when I was five or six one of the local boys wanted to practice his knots (for Boy Scouts, I think) by tying someone to a chair, I eagerly volunteered.  I didn't think of it as sexual, I didn't know yet what sexual was really, I just knew it made me feel good.

It’s not that this is the only aspect of my sexuality, it’s not, but it is a very large and fundamentally important part.  There are plenty of aspects of vanilla sex that do appeal to  me, and that I thoroughly  enjoy, but they are certainly not my primary interest.  To be sure, I could spend a lifetime without engaging in any sort of kinky behavior, but I would be unfulfilled — fundamentally unhappy.  Believe me, I've tried it, I know.

Part of what appeals to me is the lack of control.  This doesn’t mean that I want to avoid making my own decisions or don’t want to be a responsible adult.  When I say that I don’t want to be in control what I really mean is that I want to let go of my perfectionism, of all the uptight bullshit that is always happening in my head.  I also mean sensation - I have a lot of trouble really letting go and just feeling things.  If I’m not “in charge” of a situation, it’s much easier to push past that and feel.  I mean really feel, to the fullest extent possible and then some; I want to be overwhelmed with sensation.  

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