Why Don’t You Beat Me Anymore?: Of BDSM and Dead Bedrooms

a drawing of a pair of legs wearing high heels on a yellow and green staircase looking entity all superimposed over an orange-red background
Image by Pedro Ribeiro Simões / CC BY

“Ow,” I say. “What the FUCK are you doing?”

He smirks at me.

“I’m not kidding,” I say. “Stop that.”

He pulls away from me. “Pressure point stuff. You like it, don’t you?”

“Not like that I don’t,” I say. “What is wrong with you tonight?” Earlier he swatted me on the butt. Not hard, but in a way that isn’t anything like our dynamic. We’re both switches in general, but when it comes to our relationship, I top him. Not the other way around.

“What do you mean?”

“You keep doing toppy stuff. That’s not how I view you at all. That’s not what I want.”

He sighs. “I just… well, you haven’t been taking much initiative in Domming me lately. And I know you’re a sub a lot of the time. To other people. So I just thought if I wanted to initiate something, I should go with what you’re used to.”

“Well, cut it out,” I say. “It’s weird, and I don’t like it.”

“Okay,” he says. “Sorry.”

I don’t say anything. I’m still upset.

Later, I’m looking in the mirror, and I see a dark bruise under my arm, right below my armpit.

“Where’d you get that?” my husband (and Dom) asks.

I tell him my boyfriend was trying to do pressure point stuff on me. Out of nowhere.

“Well, from the looks of it, whatever he was doing, he did it wrong,” my husband says. “You shouldn’t need to apply that much pressure to get a rise out of someone. It doesn’t take much.” He tells me it’s likely that my boyfriend had been putting pressure on some random spot if he had to do it hard enough to break that many blood vessels. Not an actual pressure point.

I frown.

“Sorry that happened,” my husband says.

“Thanks,” I reply.

It’s Like a Dead Bedroom, But for Kinksters

The next day I’m out on a walk when I realize I’ve been in my boyfriend’s shoes before. Sorta.

One day I’d woken up and realized that something had been missing from my life. For a very long time. I’d become uncomfortably aware of how long it had been since my Dom and I had a proper scene. Spent months desperately wanting him to play with me but not being able to bring myself to point it out. Or ask why.

I’d get almost there — to the point where I felt brave enough to point it out. To bring up the subject. But every time, I’d lose my nerve right before. Until one time I didn’t.

“You know, it’s been a long time since we’ve played together,” I said.

My Dom nodded. “We’ve both been busy.” And he was right about that. We’d both been working an obscene number of hours. Trying to get ahead in all the tangible ways — personal development, financial stability, fixing the damn house.

“I really miss it,” I said. And before I knew it was crying.

“This falls on you, too, by the way,” he said. “It’s not my fault that we haven’t played. You should TELL me you want it.”

“I didn’t say it was your fault,” I said, confused by this reaction.

“It sure seems like you think it is, the way you’re acting,” he said.

“I don’t.”

“Well, why didn’t you tell me?” he asked.

Notice Me, Senpai

At the time, I didn’t know how to explain it to him in a way that would make any sense. Sure, he briefly identified as a switch when he was new to the scene, before he had an opportunity to experiment and see what he was into. But once the dust settled, it was clear he was definitely squarely on the D side of the slash. And he’d certainly never been anyone’s submissive.

He’d never felt sub frenzy — that hot obsessive crush of emotion that can knock a submissive off their feet. Those times when you become so preoccupied with your Dom that you can’t think of much else. Where all you do is long to serve them, to be useful to them somehow, to impress them.

It can be a desperate kind of hunger — and one that’s always been hard for me to talk about when I’m experiencing it. Sub frenzy makes me feel small, near-invisible to my Dom — and yet aching to be seen. Directing him didn’t just seem like something I shouldn’t do, it seemed impossible. In those days, I viewed him as larger in life. I couldn’t believe that I was even allowed to exist in his shadow. Forget dragging myself out into the light, jumping up and down, waving my arms, yelling “hey I’m right here, play with me!”

No. I was just like the shy ingenue of anime desperately wishing “notice me senpai” while clutching books to her chest. Who wants that attention so bad but can’t ever say it to senpai’s face.

I couldn’t tell him all those months how much I wanted for him to Dom me again. How I longed for him to desire me in that way, for him to seek me out.

Even after all this time, it had come out in a hot rush of fear, and I’d instantly wanted to stuff it back in my mouth. I couldn’t explain any of this. So I cried instead.

He pulled me to him, holding me close.

“Oh, I’m the worst,” I said. “I’m crying all over you.”

He didn’t say anything at first. Just hugged me even tighter. Tightly enough that he basically squeezed the stress from my body. After a while of holding me like that, he said, “Well now that I know, I’ll make sure to play with you some. Plan some scenes.”

“You don’t have to do that,” I said, reflexively.

“Page,” he said sternly, his eyes going cold.

“Yeah?”

“Who’s the Dom again?”

I smiled. “Yes, sir.”

Why Don’t You Beat Me Anymore?

And though I reacted differently when in that position myself, I understand the desperation. All too well.

The incredible vulnerability involved in actually opening your mouth and asking, “Why don’t you beat me anymore?”

As unwanted as it was, I get why my submissive went bratty instead and tried to provoke me.

I think about it often over the weeks that pass while I watch the bruise under my arm heal.

 

Liked it? Take a second to support Poly.Land on Patreon!

6 Comments

  1. Oh, man. Vulnerability is hard and scary. Couple that with any sort of history with an avoidant-attachment-style partner, and you have a recipe for abject freaking terror. Speaking up up might be The Thing that drives them to realize how Needy you are, and then they will leave you.

    Recovering from that mindset is harrrrrrrrd, yo.

  2. Once again, I love this little insight into the psyche of others. Your writing really helps me understand what people are feeling and thinking that I just can’t seem to comprehend or articulate most of the time. ❤

  3. I can relate to that fear all too well. Speaking up to a partner takes me weeks of processing and back and until I’m so crazed and pained that I convince myself to say something just to get myself out of this silent unanswered cycle of ‘need but can’t ask’.

  4. Oh, I can so relate to this! I’ve recently been injured and so playtime has been nonexistent. I know he is looking out for me, and I don’t want to diminish that by taking away from his control by asking for play. At least, that’s how I think about my asking. If he is in control, then he should know I need this, right? Then again, he is only human and not the mindreader I wish he could sometimes be. This is so damn difficult.

Leave a Reply

You may also like