[personal profile] flexibeast
Several years ago, my then-partner and i started getting into the Black Lace series of novels, which were basically marketed as "women-oriented erotica". At first, we were thrilled to find books that matched our taste in sexually-explicit writing. But over time, we discovered that more and more of the series had a bdsm-theme - which neither of us were into - until it got to the point where we gave up on finding non-bdsm themed books entirely. Maybe Black Lace were publishing them; but if so, bookstores weren't interested in stocking them.

i've discussed my troubled relationship with bdsm here before. But today i realised just how much of an effect bdsm-related issues are having on me.

Basically, i've let myself feel marginalised by the preponderance of bdsm-based identities, behaviours and discussions in non-heteronormative communities. And i've let myself feel that my sexuality is worthless because it's not based on bdsm. For me, the feeling is similar to the one i experience when heterosexuals assume that i'm heterosexual (and therefore, of course, appreciative of remarks denigrating queers), or when men assume that i'm a cisgendered male (and therefore, of course, appreciative of remarks denigrating women).

The end result has been a fading of my libido as my sexuality curls up into an ever-tightening ball in a corner.

So i need to work on reclaiming my sexuality as something worthwhile, even though it's lacking the components that (apparently) most members of non-heteronormative communities find attractive at the moment. i need to learn to find value in those aspects of my sexuality that many others don't: aspects such as my love of public sex, loud sex and anal sex. And i know i'm not the only person in Australia's non-heteronormative communities to have these sexual interests. In the words of Hillel: "If I am not for me, who will be? If I am for myself alone, who am I? And if not now, when?" [ Pirkei Avoth 1:14 ]

Date: 2006-07-04 11:00 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] naked-wrat.livejournal.com
*crawls over to ever-tightening ball and licks it with lotsa love and lust*

I love you beautiful, sexy, blossoming woman! *kisses*

Date: 2006-07-05 09:48 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] flexibeast.livejournal.com
Aww, thanks gorgeous. :-) *returns kisses*

Date: 2006-07-04 14:06 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] aimeearrgh.livejournal.com
And the Black Lace novels are only going to get worse in that respect - Kerri Sharp, the original series editor, left a while ago, and has been replaced by the same editor who does the Nexus (fetish/BDSM) line. Erotica for women, my arse.

My erotica tastes are incredibly varied, and yet I still find it hard to find stuff that meets those tastes. Women's erotica is still infatuated with BDSM as far as I can see (which is not a problem for me, personally, but I can see how it would be for you and others). In my mind and experience, erotic fiction ties in with social mores, and I think a lot of women who are consuming and writing that fiction are "oh thank god this is a valid desire" about it. Then there's those who are fine with it, and are just looking to find something that describes their desires. It's a funny thing.

Date: 2006-07-05 10:08 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] flexibeast.livejournal.com
*nod* i bought my first Black Lace novel bought in the mid-90s; and i know my former partner and i had given up on them by around 2000. And given the overall societal trend, the continuing Black Lace trend doesn't surprise me.

i must say i actually dislike the connotations of phrases like "erotica for women". Part of me accepts that, for whatever reason - nature, nurture, some combination - many women in our society have the sort of preferences in sexually explicit material that "erotica for women" is aimed at. But on the other hand, i also dislike the implicit homogeneity of women's desires - all of my close female friends/partners need HARDCORE ACTION! :-) in their material, not lots of soft-focus, and a story is pretty much optional (and sometimes an annoyance).

i definitely agree with you re. the validation thing. i guess i just wish that the number of women wanting validation of other-than-bdsm desires was sufficiently large that the market would be interested in catering to it. But then, i can't really complain: so many people are self-publishing such a diversity of material on the net that, at least in terms of short stories, i'm pretty much spoilt for choice.

personally

Date: 2006-07-04 14:07 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] weavingfire.livejournal.com
I find I'm too vanilla for some people (really, I just like a little spanky, spanky once in a while)and too kinky for others (yes, the group sex thing).

You may feel marginalised but there are plenty of people out there who feel just as you do ;-)

Re: personally

Date: 2006-07-05 12:47 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] flexibeast.livejournal.com
Heh, yep, that in-between place is pretty much where i'm at too. :-) (Group sex, mmmmm!)

Yes, there are definitely like-minded people out there - it's just a matter of finding them. :-)

Date: 2006-07-04 23:57 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] candika.livejournal.com
I'd just like to say that in some ways you are fortunate in that you still have a libido. Many suffering from CFS don't. Don't allow people to tell you that the things you enjoy are less valid and worthwhile than the things they do. I's bullshit. That kind of attitude, if you take it on board, can shut your libido down in a heartbeat and it's not easy to get it started again. I speak from experience. So don't allow them to take it away from you, it's yours and you're intitled to it. Incidently, it's also one of the most effective weapons you have against the depression that accompanies CFS.

Date: 2006-07-05 12:52 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] flexibeast.livejournal.com
I'd just like to say that in some ways you are fortunate in that you still have a libido. Many suffering from CFS don't.

Sorry if i pressed a button for you . . . . :-(

My libido was pretty high to begin with, so that's perhaps why it's still there despite the CFS. Having said that, my energy levels have been so low lately that it's been very difficult to express the bits of my libido still hanging around.

I speak from experience.

Sorry to hear that. :-( *offers hugs, fwiw*

Incidently, it's also one of the most effective weapons you have against the depression that accompanies CFS.

*nod* Yes, although sometimes i end up feeling more depressed as a result of wanting to do something but simply not having the energy to do it . . . .

Date: 2006-07-05 02:07 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] not-in-denial.livejournal.com
First, I'm going to be annoying and give some thought to the linked entry on BDSM, since I didn't comment on the actual thing -

I agree with pretty much everything you said, and yet I'm still in the scene. Why? Because it's the one place I've found where I'm considered less of a freak. Like you said how you felt most at home in the swingers scene, because no one looked down on your queerness? I feel most at home in the BDSM scene, because *most* people there understand my need to be dominant.

Not to say the scene doesn't shit me. Oh, it does. Not even getting into the obvious problems, the ageism alone is astounding.

Anyway. Back to *this* post.

I can't say I understand what it feels like exactly. I do know that I'm not considered "real" by just about every community ever, so I've yet to find a niche that I fit into happily enough to let my libido flourish.

But anyway! You shouldn't let people tell you what your sexuality is. You define it, not them. If you like loud sex, public sex, anal sex...LOVE THEM, don't apologize for them, and just do your best to seek out others with similar interests if a community spirit is what you feel is lacking.

blah blah blah, I'll shut up now. *HUGS!*

Date: 2006-07-05 13:12 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] flexibeast.livejournal.com
I agree with pretty much everything you said, and yet I'm still in the scene. Why? Because it's the one place I've found where I'm considered less of a freak.

*nod* Yep, fair enough!

Not to say the scene doesn't shit me. Oh, it does. Not even getting into the obvious problems, the ageism alone is astounding.

Yes, i remember you saying . . . . do you think it may be another form of (obviously non-consensual!) power play for the people that behave that way?

I do know that I'm not considered "real" by just about every community ever, so I've yet to find a niche that I fit into happily enough to let my libido flourish.

Well, i read this great article in the Village Voice recently (http://www.villagevoice.com/nyclife/0625,zappia,73586,15.html) about a "subculture within [queer] subculture" that sounds like it might be up our alley . . . .

LOVE THEM, don't apologize for them, and just do your best to seek out others with similar interests if a community spirit is what you feel is lacking.

*nod* Yes, i think i need to start putting out some feelers . . . .

*HUGS!*

*returns hugs gratefully* Thank you muchly!

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