How Would You Respond to Your Partner’s Request for Dominating, Rough Kinky Sex?
Our inner sexual yearnings and our intimate relations with our partners are way more complicated than the simplistic, prudish, sexual morality we have grown up with. Here is just one of these complexities that I encounter when working with men, women and couples seeking to embrace their most taboo desires, in a conscious healthy way.
Women’s sexuality and its overt, liberated expression is on the rise. It is coming out of the shadows and into the mainstream. For many women this means learning about self-love, intimate touch, sacred sexuality, neo-tantra, sex toys, g-spots and other meaningful sensual expressions. For others it has a more kinky, edgy expression. This interest in Kink, Dominance and submission and Fetish by millions of women worldwide was recently awakened and revealed by the 50 Shades phenomena.
Paradoxically the cultural conversation about men’s sexuality is seeped in notions of rape-culture, creepiness, and misogyny from the left and immorality, sin and the work of the devil on the right.
Over the last 50 years a great number of men have attempted or were raised to be the nice, sweet, considerate guy. What Robert Bly coined as the “soft male” is a predominate representation of the masculine in these current times. These are men who lost their edge, their voice, their ability to push back and hold their ground in their relations with women, without manifesting the tyrant or the weakling. There is a significant population of men whose sexual engagement style is toned way down, consequently, if not shamed into conformity by conservative, religious morality, an emasculating environment and our generally sex-negative culture.
So what should a guy do when their partner grows weary of tepid nice guy sex and demands that he be a brutish predator in the bedroom? If you have not already embraced your conscious good man and your conscious bad boy, here is a story of a man who did, in his relationship with his fiancé.
In parts 1 and 2 of this series I described the journey of a client couple. They were divided by an unbridgeable erotic mismatch. The woman was at a point that she felt she might need to leave the relationship. I met with the woman initially for several sessions, prior to meeting with her partner. She revealed that her life-long sexual yearnings centered on submitting to an aggressive dominant man…or men. During the course of her work with me, she began to come to terms with her own fears, shames and shadowy unconscious behaviors, that showed up around her fetish desires. These desires included fantasies of rough sex, dressing slutty and being gang-raped, or being owned and passed around by her Dominant man. These had been recurring themes in her frequent masturbatory excursions since her early teens.
Now in her mid forty’s she was determined to embrace this mostly hidden, secreted, abandoned part of her sexuality, in a healthy, conscious mature way. This included learning about honestly discussing her desires with her partner, negotiating for what she wanted, reviewing safety issues, safewords, aftercare and other components of conscious engagement of her fetish desires.
Her newly enlivened and liberated passion began to wake up the sleeping dominant assertive sexual masculine within her fiancé. But part of him was very reluctant, and not sure he could allow himself to let go of his deeply ingrained nice guy embodiment. Up until this moment he had been the kind, sweet soft masculine presence he had been raised to be. He did not believe it was right for a man to be aggressive and dominant. This point had been drilled into him as a boy by his very domineering mother. While this generally made him a very sweet and easy-going partner in the day-to-day relationship, it also left his partner’s fierce authentic erotic desires unfulfilled. This divide threatened the long-term union they both sought with each other.
I began work with him one-on-one to support him in bringing his latent but authentic sexual dominance to life, and learning to bring it to conscious, consensual expression.
Here is how he stated his want going forward.
“I would like to meet with you to further C’s journey and enjoyment of the BDSM scenes/themes that so draw her. I am only mildly interested in being a top to her, and would like to explore this with you. These three issues seem to be what’s holding me back:
1) Fear of rejection if I don’t get it right, or if I don’t develop a stronger dom-sense.
2) Dismay that we don’t find time for regular sex, and wanting my basic sexual needs and our connection to be satisfied before we embark on a risky project.
3) It looks like a dauntingly large project that takes a lot of pre-planning and learning of techniques.
Over the course of 3 sessions I supported L (how I will refer to him) in beginning to identify and untangle the unconscious restrictions and internal beliefs he held about his masculine power. He began to understand how his nice-guyness had a shadow side, as well as a noble side. His exploration of the shadow side revealed his fear of stating a strong opinion, a fear of displeasing a woman, of raising a woman’s anger. This part of him felt powerless, weak, timid and shy. He was unable to state or hold his own boundaries. He was continually yielding and bending. At times, though, the accumulated resentment from his abdications would cause a brief explosion of anger. He began to understand how he could bring both his sweet, tender side, as well as his assertive masculine into balance, instead of abandoning or holding his own voice back. The next step was to bring this sense of power into the erotic dance his partner so longed to explore with him.
Another area of work that was clear and is often the case, was his lack of body awareness, or presence. His shyness and timidity was mirrored in his body language and movements. I helped him through some movement practices to bring a more fluid, graceful flow into his gestures. This helped smooth out the clunky, unsyncopated movements his body had been stuck in for so long. He learned about staying in his breath and intention to support being present.
I put a leather flogger in his hand. I had him kneel and place a big pillow before him. I asked him to hit the pillow with the flogger. His aim, his control, his power-stroke were all off beat, as would be expected after decades of the restraint he had placed on his body and fierceness. We worked on some mechanics and with some practice, his body eased into a more coordinated and potent swing of the flogger.
In regards the fierceness, the emotional content, I suggested he recall his anger at some point along the way with C, where he abdicated his power, his own rights. I could see the spark in his eye and then his body as he made the connection between his right to his personal power, his right to his own want, and the authentic expression of it. This exercise supported an important connection at the physical level, as it brought a fierceness back into his body, and authentic emotional expression into his soul, that had never been allowed. He said he never felt more exhilarated. To be clear, this exercise was about accessing and embodying fierceness not an old story of anger.
I had already worked with his partner and knew she had shared the practices of negotiation, safe-words and after care required to safely journey into these more primitive instinctual levels of desire.
I also helped him understand how these were two different aspects of their relationship, the day to day loving side of tenderness, respect and care, and the erotic side that was calling for fierce, untamed force and dominance of his partner in a consensual negotiated frame work.
After the first session, I heard back from him via email later in the week.
“I want to share what a great experience I had at our session, how powerful I felt being me, more assertive, more alive, less shy about offending by sharing my opinions. Then a few days later, I had a joyous Dom experience controlling and forcefully spanking my partner during lovemaking, much to her pleasure. Such different roles, and so deliciously fulfilling to be embracing them. The unfolding continues! I am especially interested in learning the talk that C craves, the daddy/teacher/authority figure talk that you demonstrated so well.”
In our next session, I offered more about ritual as a practical tool for consciously entering these deeper aspects of Eros. I explained how creating a meaningful ritual container could support his new intention in engaging his partner.
This container becomes his personal domain to rule in, as he desires. It is his personal realm that by design supports him by creating the ambiance that best suits him. This ambiance includes, lighting, sounds/music, aromas, textures, and artifacts, as well as how he wanted C to dress, enter the room etc. All of these levels of ambiance enliven the physical senses and thus support presence and embodiment.
I worked further with the idea of embodiment of this dominant, authoritative, daddy persona that was emerging. He did not need to script out dialogue for that persona as much as to allow this innate part of him that was becoming more evident, to be allowed to fully embody in his and his partner’s ritual engagements. That part of him already knew what to say and what he wanted. All the parts of him that resisted, judged or felt shame about this aspect of his erotic expression – just needed to get out of the way. His dominant persona, when fully present, knew exactly what it wanted to say, what tone of voice, what physical intensity it might be said with.
He next reported back
“I had s blast with C last week applying what I learned about creating my own ritual container… having her start the ritual dressed in my preferred sexy attire and with lighting the fire on her knees, being my footstool, taking off my shoes and socks. I started to feel more comfortable in telling her what to do, what “I” wanted her to do. Seeing her respond so devotedly, being a “good girl” for “Daddy” was amazing, exhilarating. Yeah, it was so good!”
About 6 months after I last saw them, I received an invitation to their wedding. It was a beautiful day in July. The ceremony was a lovely statement of devotion and care for each other and their intention for their life together from that day forth. When I went through the receiving line to congratulate them, I received a big smile and warm hug from C. Then I gave L a hug and he leaned over and said. “Galen, I wouldn’t have made it here if not for you, I am a changed man!”
“Thank you, but you did the work, you both did. I just nudged you a bit to find your own path.” I replied.
There is a path for each of us to be conscious, empowered, respectful compassionate men and women. Taking this path allows us each to fully embrace the full range of our sexuality from sacred to profane. We just need to do the work to open the gates blocking the path.
The Fetish Sex Advisor column is intended as a place where singles and couples can find in-depth articles and anonymously submit their questions about how to maneuver the complexities of Fetish, Kink and D/s-BDSM sex and relationships
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