There is no “bad” and there is no “wrong” when it comes to exploring and forming a sexual identity. Use these tips to find your own personal community.
I was at a Goth club with my co-worker; we had been slinging vibrators all day to the young and old, the rich and poor of Denver at the largest sex toy store in the city. He was there looking to get laid. I was there looking to be entertained. Everyone was in some shade of black, smoking cigarettes and talking about this or that when his friend came over and introduced himself, I’ll call him K. He was tall, with spiky hair, wearing very heavy boots. The two of them started chatting about the weather or something equally mundane but then the conversation shifted to the fetish ball K had just been to the night before. I was immediately intrigued. What was it like? What did the people wear? What did they do? He said how he had bought a custom made paddle and how people lined-up to get spanked with it.
“Does it hurt?” I asked.
“Most people like it.”
“Hit me with it then,” I replied.
“It’s in my car,” he said trying to narrow in on who I was and if I was serious.
“Go get it.”
A minute later he returned with a paddle very similar in size to something one might play table tennis with, yet prettier like a wooden spoon one would use to stir the biggest caldron of soup ever made.
He had me lean over in the middle of the club, he lifted up my skirt and whacked the paddle across my ass.
I realized right then, that I could get really into this.
And so began my adventures in BDSM.
The thing is, some of us may already know what we like, while others may take more time to discover through experimentation. Many of us, however, are aware that vanilla is not the flavor we crave. So what do we do when we yearn for something and don’t quite feel like we have found it and definitely don’t feel like we belong?
Here are 5 Ways to Own Your Sexual Identity and Find Your Community
1. Take a Risk, Look Inside
Before the paddle hit the skin I didn’t know I was into that sort of thing. I had always had a sneaking suspicion that I liked pain a little more than most people. I played sports rough and was fond of the bruises left over after; I liked nail scratching and teeth biting and hair pulling in the bedroom; I worked out hard and enjoyed the way my body felt pained afterward. Yet I had never really sat down and examined what it could all mean, if I could push it further, if I would potentially like more of it and if so how would I get it. I was just bored with my partners; it wasn’t them, it was me. Or maybe it was them not really getting me.
When there seems to be a fundamental element missing from one’s sexuality it’s a good time for inner reflection, to really take some time to think about and explore what one gets all hot and bothered about. Write down fantasies, check out different erotic stories and videos and see if any tickle the fancy.
2. Cyborg Explore
One of the best things that the internet has been able to do is create communities of likeminded people who didn’t even know each other existed prior. There is no kink or fetish that does not have somebody already doing it and in many instances, talking about it online.
There are sites like fetlife, which is like a Facebook for the BDSM community, there are polyamory dating sites, there are meetup groups of all kinds, plus forums and a plethora of articles generally written by knowledgeable folk. Joining an online community is a great way to get one’s feet wet before taking the full plunge.
3. Go and Get it
If you live near a decent size city, chances are there are going to be regular events of some sort to go to. Many will be listed online. It’s totally cool to contact the event organizer prior with questions or concerns, that’s what they’re there for.
Upon arrival don’t feel pressured to participate in anything, it’s perfectly reasonable to be an observer. If you do feel uncomfortable, talk to the organizer of the event about the situation and they can help resolve it, or, just leave and try again somewhere else or another time with different people.
4. It’s Hot to Be Taught
I was lucky that I found a decent Dom by chance, one who was already a part of a community of people that I could be as involved with as I wanted. It’s not always that easy, but if there is a particular area of interest, like rope binding or knife play, then it’s a smart idea to find a mentor. Yeah, it requires reaching out of one’s comfort zone, but isn’t that the whole point? To discover what you really like, what you’re really into, who you really are? It might be weird or frightening at first, but it could also be fun and exhilarating.
5. Get in or Get Out
Finding a community who support and encourage your sexuality is lovely, but it’s also important to be comfortable with the fact that one’s sexual identity can be fluid, that your own sexuality can be fluid. So maybe you’re into BDSM for a year, then not so much, or maybe there was a voyeurism period or those three months with the vampire role-playing bit; it’s okay to get out there and explore. It’s okay to find something and stick with it and it’s okay to walk away when something more tempting comes along.
Later K sent me a text and asked me how I felt.
“You could have hit me harder.” I said, egging him on.
It turns out that pushing boundaries is something that I enjoy, both in the bedroom and out. It’s amazing what one aspect of one’s life can do for other parts. When all areas are fully investigated it helps one become more of who they are, reach their fullest potential, become able to give and receive the love (and pleasure) they so desire from the world.
[image: via Morgaine on flickr]