I'm not getting out much. Or, to be precise, I'm not getting out to do kinky things much, or staying in to do kinky things for that matter. Not for lack of offers or invites - but because I don't really want to touch anyone, or to be touched. I especially don't want any uncontrolled touching. The type that catches you by surprise or custome dictates you must participate in. I bristle when people come near, even people I like - as opposed to the standard bristling at strangers on the tube which is entirely natural.
Interestingly, I even bristle at the mention of touching, which was pointed out by Knight of Wands whilst we were discussing our recent dating dilemmas over the weekend. Majoritively, it was his dilemmas we were talking about, I had declared mine dealt with on account of not actually going on dates.
I don't want anyone "significant" in my life, which is certainly a step-change from a few months ago, where I strongly suspect I was looking to fill the hole left by The Photographer with another person, rather than with bits of myself. A lot has happened since and I haven't really had any time to look at where I am now. And that means I am better off alone. The idea of trying to do that whilst getting off on/with other people seems messy. I know a lot of kinky friends who are big adherents of the physical stimulus school. This is the one that teaches you to just go out and get a partner, fuck like rabbits (or tie each other up, or hit each other, or insert things into each other) and you will feel better in the morning.
However, it's rarely that simple, as I learned from my experiences with Captain. Because those people are usually still there in the morning, and if it was good you want to do it again. And again. And again. And then they are part of your life, but in a way you neither anticipated nor can often manage effectively. Bodies and the attendant highs of BDSM can be addictive, and you can get to like it. Sometimes you get to liking the people they are attached to and then it gets complicated. Currently, I am very much against complication but I also don't really trust myself not to make things complicated, so I'm generally keeping my distance from any potential relationship territory. As I've done this, and seen the areas it's opened up for me to breathe, I've found I'm enjoying the spaces I've created.
Now, obviously there is a world of difference between meeting up with people for a bit of kinky fun and engaging in a serious D/s exchange. I'm finding myself in the interesting position where I am intellectually stimulated by the latter and only mildly interested in the former. For both alternatives (and everything in between) I want to be on top, so whatever it is I want to be in charge. I want to be in charge, but also, I want to keep everything at arms length, or in well spaced out doses.
Knight of Wands and I talked a little about this, and about my only current exercise in BDSM - what I'm doing with Ten and he expressed a curious mix of shock, wry amusement and slight concern over the fact that I was mediating everything via text and email. I like to think he was also a bit impressed with my amazing remote controlling skills but what came over most strongly was his surprise that I could be enjoying this sort of activity:
"No, mostly email, some texts. Lots of texts."
"But what about the touching?" At this point he makes a stroking hand-gesture to demonstrate, in case it had been so long that I had forgotten what touching looks like.
The lack of touching actually has rather a power to it. I can exert control with only the assurance that following my instruction is pleasing to me. It's a very cerebral activity, and I like playing with brains - it's where the game is best played anyhow. Furthermore, working with text allows for a different, more leisurely use of time and space than working with bodies. I can send messages whenever I feel like it, pick up and reply when I am in the mood and re-read old answers at the touch of a button. I'm relying on one of my strengths - the written word, which is reassuring and precise. Allowing me to conjure up worlds of ideological perfection and not worry about making them into a reality.
I like the idea of working at one step remove. That I send these instructions and they are carried out, far away and yet under my supervision. That the idea of me and my dominance is as strong as my actual presence. Desire lives in the mind. We create our own images of people and project those personas onto the real body. This is exacerbated with distance, because there is not the frequency or immediacy of contact to contradict our thoughts. It's an idea that has clearly taken root, making an image of me that is powerful and rather different to myself and my own experience. We were discussing puppy options in a text exchange and Ten commented he could never picture me in a cage, so my dominant self certainly has a life of her own.
Of course, this does mean that come September I am likely to have a rather fierce reputation to live up to. By then, I hope I will have mustered enough internal firepower to more than meet the challenge.