Rather than the tool of power exchange, I prefer to use the tool of immutable-self-determination to create balance in my sex/relationships (it's ironic that a single word for that concept does not exist). I have the goal of eliminating power/control/authority/roles from my styles of relating. Most people believe that authority is inevitable in human styles of relating; I don't, because I have experienced relating without authority (and I vastly prefer it). I strive to refrain from giving away my authority if I am able to take care of myself, and I strive to refrain from taking responsibility for someone else if ze is able to take care of zirself. I don't want to interact with anyone in a way that uses control, power, authority, or any kind of exclusive role -- I want to completely eliminate those from my relationships. This is possible, at least in my reality.
How this relates to power exchange: even if everyone involved wants it, the fact that authority/control is given/taken/used is something I consider a hindrance to equality. Even if the power between a dom and sub is equal, the deliberate USE of power is something I cannot appreciate. The reason I don't participate is not because I see it as inherently 'wrong,' but because it falls under the umbrella of relating styles which I have found to be unhelpful for building equality in my life. In my goal for my life, power exchange would be a side track that doesn't lead to my goal. Others who do not share the same goal of eliminating use of authority/power exchange/control/roles from their relationships would obviously not be hindered by power exchange.
As for the elements that resonate with me? fierceness, high levels of communication about specific acts, sensation play, specific kinds of bondage, and things that are referred to as "kinky" and are fetishes to some, though they don't excite me in a way that I personally consider fetishistic. I associate "fetish" with "automatic erotic response" which I don't think I ever experience (my erotic response is highly situational), but I think that other people use the word "fetish" to simply mean "something that attracts me" so I sometimes use the word that way.
I use the term "fierce" instead of "rough" to describe the kind of aggressive sex that I like because "rough" to me implies carelessness, and I don't find that sexy at all. Also, I've often heard "rough" used to describe sex in which one person handles the other roughly, in an aggressive-passive dynamic. When I have fierce sex, it's not push/be-pushed, it's push/push. Both/all people are active, initiatory AND reactive. This kind of sex for me includes biting, scratching, pinning (specific kinds), smacking (specific places), gripping hard, and wrestling (all elements both given/received). It's a very intense kind of sex for me, and I would need to have a lot of intimacy with a person to share this kind of sex with them -- I'd have to trust them to know themselves very well and communicate their desires clearly and without hesitation, AND to listen/watch for my own communications. And obviously they'd have to be willing to be both initiatory and reactive. I wonder if being similar in physicality is necessary for me, because when I think about doing this with someone of great difference to me in physical size or strength I feel concerned that that physical difference would create a power difference, but I don't think I'll know the answer to that until I try it. (experimental Bel is experimental *giggles*)
Note -- fierce sex is not the only kind of sex I like, by a long shot! I also enjoy soft slow sex, and I think a mixture of the two is my favorite.
And sensation play? this is a new one for me. I've discovered that things that would cause me pain if I were not aroused feel... I dunno how to describe it. It just feels intense, in a way that amps up my adrenaline. I love being bitten and I like being scratched (with fingernails) -- partly for the sensation and partly for the marks afterward. Being marked makes me feel really loved; it feels like a kiss that I get to wear. (sadly I don't mark easily and mine fade fast, but that makes me even happier about them when they do 'take' and last) And I love feeling ache afterward in my muscles or (every now and then) in a particularly bruisy mark. There are a lot of elements in this category that I'm curious about -- I've tried electric stimulation and even the slightest current is really unpleasant to me (I think I'm just very sensitive to that kind of energy) but there are quite a few other things I want to try. I think I might enjoy flogging or firecupping and I'm pretty sure I'd enjoy wax.
On bondage -- I resonate with bondage for sensation/energetic-current and found that to be amazing, and am definitely interested in exploring that more. I'm also interested in using bondage for trust-building -- I'm still a little undecided on that but want to try it. I think it can be done without power difference, and I'll have to try it to see.
(photo by Kyle)
(photo by Kyle)
the way Kyle's eyes crinkle when ze giggles is pretty much my favorite thing in the universe.
♥ (Kyle marks much more easily than I. Or I'm better at it. Only time will tell!)
my fetlife profile!