He’s My Pet, My Slut, My Beast.

But what do you call your partners? I mean, boyfriend and girlfriend sound so… junior high, and very gendered. Lover can be good, but for me it both adds something and leave something out.

And people are usually more than just their roles, to me.

Labels also tend to carry with them a lot of cultural assumptions about the nature, scope, and future trajectory of those relationships. Assumptions that may or may not apply, and make it too easy for those in the relationships fall in to treating the dynamic as what it “should be”, instead of letting it be what it is.

So, I’ve been recording a list of a few terms I’ve run across hat I like, or at least find fascinating:

datefriend or datemate

Just dating, not too serious. Makes the point. Easy to say and use, and people understand almost immediately.

enbyfriend

Like boyfriend or girlfriend, but non-gendered. enby = NB = Non-Binary.

nesting partner

Instead of “primary.” The person you live with, have children with. Does not suggest a caste of better-than or less-than.

sweetie

A simple, universally understood term, but some female-identifying people take offense, because it’s been used as a slur.

lifemate

Another word for a person who is expected to be at the core of your life. Does not necessarily focus on marriage, or even co-habitation. Does not have to even be romantic.

intimate (n.)

Can be sexual or non. Does not necessarily refer to gender. May seem a bit too suggestive for some tastes in mixed company.

anchor

Another word for primary in a multiple partner situation that does not imply hierarchy.

oso or other significant other

A reference to other poly partners. May be used singly or for multiples: other significant others. Suggests a depth of connection.

What are your favorite words/ roles to describe your relationships and partners to others?

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Poly is NOT About Jealousy (Poly Is Not, Part VI)

Of course there is jealousy in poly. To suggest that there is not is the height of naivete, in my opinion.

However, poly, to me, is not about jealousy, per se. As my friend Pepper_Pots puts it:

The challenge of poly is there’s no good way to go about communicating “you are making a grave error.” Without it being seen as jealousy.

Which is exactly the wrong way to do poly, in my view.

I mean, if you’re going to ‘do poly,’ shouldn’t you be choosing good poly partners? And I’m guessing you are choosing good partners, or you have bigger problems than poly…

Actually, that’s and idea for another writing: Poly is NOT having a crap ton of bad partners, trying to fill in the gaps. That’s a long title. Hmmm.

But, I digress.

Anyway, you’ve chosen your partner(s) because they are fucking amazing, right?

So, when they say, “Oh, that one, he gives me the creeps,” or “Ummm, I really don’t feel comfortable opening our lives to her,” why would your first thought be that your partner is just being jealous?

I’m not saying they are not jealous. They may be.

However, the poly people I know work very hard to separate whatever jealousy they have from other feelings, like those gut feelings of ‘this person is not ok.’

They wrangle it over and over in their minds, trying to remove any untoward bias. They ask themselves if they don’t have ulterior motives. They fret over saying anything at all, and often try to hold out as long as possible, for fear of being wrong, or feeling like they are trying to take away your happiness.

They go through all of this, and finally say something to you, trying to be a good, communicative poly partner.

And you immediately think they are just being jealous.

No bueno.

After all, you are poly together, right? You’ve chosen each other for good reasons. You trust your partner(s) in so much.

Why not trust that while they may or may not be jealous, that they have something important to communicate to you, and take that communication, and thank them, and really think on it.

After all (I know I’m beating a dead horse, here), you TRUST THEM, right? With a lot.

Do you suddenly not trust them, because you have a boner for a new person?

FYI: boner also applies to lady boners… this s not a sexist thing in my world.

Or do you just not want to hear the bad stuff while you are enjoying the blissful ignorance of NRE?

Because you’re not in poly together for the jealousy, right? You’re in it for the love, the freedom, the sharing, the joy, the fun, the communication…

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Behavior Modification: Negative Attention is Attention, Exercise 6

I’m sure you’ve heard the saying that the opposite of love is not hate, it’s indifference, right?

(If not, you’ve heard it now, LOL!)

Well, in behavior modification, the opposite of positive attention (pets, smiles, love) is not negative attention (fighting, beating, yelling), it’s no attention.

Apathy.

Indifference.

Pretending they don’t exist or didn’t just do that thing.

Ask a self-identified brat what the hate most from their dominant, and many (most, dare I say?) will tell you it’s being ignored.

Lack of attention.

And this is not just in the kink world. Kids do this all the time. Want Mama’s attention? Act up! Sure, she’ll be mad, but that ‘s better than being ignored.

Puppies and dogs do it. With their human pack and with each other.

Attention is a powerful thing.

Why?

Because even negative attention means you care.

You care enough to try to correct the behavior. You care enough to fight about it. To yell about it.

And yet… when this becomes a pattern, it reinforces negative behavior, which you don’t want.

Example

One of my favorite examples was a sub who was serving me, who was a self-identified brat.

He’d said he would drive me to a teaching event, and so needed to be at my home to pick me up by 7:00am, and it was at least a 30-minute drive.

At 5:50am, I sent him a text, asking if he was getting ready.

His response was crabbing about how he had planned to sleep until 6, he was so tired, he needed more sleep… and jokingly said, “How about you go on, and I’ll see you next week?”

My response? “Ok.”

The shock came through with his next text.

“Wait. What?”

“Ok. You said you wanted to serve. Now, you don’t want to serve. So, you won’t serve. I’ll see you next week.”

You see, he was used to bratting, and getting threats to beat his ass, attention in the form of angry or exasperated words…

I simply said Ok, and went on with my getting ready.

Later, he told me how terrified it made him to not get the attention he was so used to, and he scrambled quickly to make it right:

“I’ll be there 10 minutes before 7.”

“Thank you.”

Exercise

Look over patterns in your relationships and find times when your negative attention has reinforced behavior in your partners and other loved ones, even your pets.

Look at the patterns you’ve developed with people in your life, and think on how you might be able to change those with a bit more thought to how you use your attention.

Willing to share examples of your own?

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And The Award For Most Persistent Case Of Entitlement-itis Goes To…

I wrote about entitlement about two weeks ago, and I said I give a lot of my time trying to help people in the community, because I believe it’s worth it, and it’s the right thing to do.

And then, as fate would have it, not a week later, EntitledPrick6969† comes along to knock me off my high horse, and kick me around with personal demands for privilege, for good measure.

† Not his real name.

This guy is not just your everyday, run of the mill entitled prick (EP), he’s already got at least one rant on whiny-ness under the belt that so nattily holds up his Super-Awesome-Master-Of-The-Fucking-Universe pants.

It all started innocently enough:

Hello my name is EntitledPrick6969, how are you doing today? I really enjoyed your profile and your note really hit home with me. I would love to go out with you sometime, I am kinda new to the life and looking to meet someone I can trust.

Awesome. That’s a nice introduction, if a bit heavy on the ‘I want.’ So, I check out his profile.

He live 2.5 hours from me, but I own a kink venue nearly at a mid point, so I suggest we meet there.

We can meet up but Im not into public play, my situation makes it where I would rather have 1 on 1 time. Does that work for you? You think __________ is a long drive? I thought you travel? My [super-cute body part—not cock] might change your mind:P

Hmmm.

I just offered to meet this guy halfway, and then he questions my love of travel (what does a love of travel have to do with driving 5 hours round trip to meet some random dude who propositioned me off the interwebz?), and tells me hot hot he thinks he is.

Ok. I get it.

But, I figure, he’s new, so I respond.

To no avail. This guy is in critical condition. The entitlement has worked it’s way into every part of his life, like a cancer. It has spread it’s tendrils and crushed the humanity out of him.

Over the course of a week, I was treated to the following gems:

If you arent willing to drive 2 hours why should I drive over a hour to meet you, truthfully you should want me to save my energy for sex.

I mean Im not packing a horse dick, but I know I am not hard to look at unlike a majority on this site…

I want to see if you can out Dom me, this isnt my first BDSM experience it always fun to make a supposed alpha woman beg, alot of women have tried to make me submit but its seems my testosterone is just too much.

I have [insert psychological problem here].

You don’t understand [insert painful physical problems he has]

Maybe your the entitled one, maybe you should be thankful I can stand up and fuck you more than your travel time.

the fact that I look attractive than most should motivate women to meet me

but what you should know is I am a cut above the rest so I demand the same fucking level of respect.

your ignorant as fuck here is my point since your so successful, if I have [insert physical disability here] why wouldnt you want to cater to my needs?

If I live in a nice ass part of town, why the fuck would I want to drive, when I could roll down to trade and meet you for a drink

If I look better than most of the people on this site, have actually been paid to film and am about to run my own business as well.

If you don’t get what you want with a nice note, OBVIOUSLY start down the list of 1. how hot you are, 2. how good you’ll fuck, 3. the psychological issues you’re seeing a therapist for, and… if all else fails, bring out 4. the physical limitations that will make women pity fuck you.

And, of course, when it doesn’t work, insult. That’s a SURE way to get people into bed… or to mend a broken ego.

So, yeah. If Fet were looking for a poster child for Entitlement Issues™, I would nominate this guy. I mean, he’s a pro.

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Do You Give Yourself Away?

Do you give your happiness, self-confidence and power away to the one you love?

Worse, do you give it away to random people?

I’m betting you have in the past. I would bet EVERYONE has at one time or another.

Hell, I do it, sometimes. It’s a difficult habit to break.

“I choose to feel good if and only if my partner/my friend/this stranger behaves in the manner that I wish or that I think is right. If not, I will choose to feel bad.”

So, if my partner/my friend/this stranger does not behave the way I wish or in a way that I think is right, then I cannot be happy.

People who get angry or upset because others not doing what they want are unconsciously making these other people “responsible” for their own happiness. They are giving away their happiness and power.

So you give yourself away like this? In what circumstances? Any thoughts on what to do about it, and turn it around?

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Passive-Aggressive Behavior KILLS Relationships

Have you ever asked someone why they are not doing something that they said they would do, and they answer (usually after so many hours of argument):

“Well, you did this, and it upset and hurt me, so I didn’t feel like doing (insert whatever they said they would do).”

And you’re left gobsmacked, thinking, “WTF? Why didn’t you just tell me?”

This is passive-aggressive behavior.

And it kills a relationship.

Sometimes it’s a quick death. Sometimes it lingers for years, wearing you both down, until there is nothing left but bitterness and recriminations.

But it kills.

Sure as shit.

And here is how it kills:

It takes FOREVER to get to the heart of what’s wrong.

Sometimes, that conversation up there happens the next day. Sometimes, it happens YEARS later.

That not only means that whomever hurt the other HAS NO IDEA the damage, until WAY too late for anything to really be done about it.

Studies have shown that couples that address issues and annoyances quickly have happier relationships. Behavior can be changed much more easily when problems are pointed out early.

It creates a barrier to KNOWING each other.

When you are hiding your feelings, and acting out instead of talking about them, you are creating a distance between your true self and another.

And the BIGGEST reason: You do things you know are wrong.

You know that not doing something when you say you will is wrong. And yet, that’s a big part of passive-aggressive behavior.

There’s more to it than that, though.

There are the subtle things. Things that you hear about happening in many relationships.

  • Withholding sex. Because you’re not “feeling it,” because you’re upset about something and haven’t expressed it, or allowed it to heal.
  • Not saying “I love you,” or “beautiful,” or any of the other sweet things you normally would.
  • Not doing the small things, because as soon as you think of them, you remember you’re still a bit upset, so you don’t, because they don’t deserve it.

And you KNOW it’s right to do these in a relationship.

But you don’t.

So, you not only let the big things slide, but the small things as well. Because you’re busy nursing your hurt.

And that’s one of the biggest ways passive-aggressive behavior kills a relationship. By making you be less you, so you cannot connect as deeply and intimately as you could otherwise.

The biggest part of passive-aggressive that is hurtful is the passive part.

Speak up. Say when you’ve been hurt. Talk it out. As quickly as possible.

Don’t compromise your relationship. Don’t compromise yourself.

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Writing Prompt: Men And Women. Masculine And Feminine. Opposites Attract. Navigating The Binary.

So, I just read and responded to a piece by a new friend of mine, “Let Him Be The Man (https://fetlife.com/users/3424557/posts/3673145)and I realized after replying that there was a lot there that I couldn’t cover in the gender-normative binary.

Also, with HB2 here in North Carolina being a big issue and major discussion (i had 7 conversations this weekend about it, personally), this is a very current topic.

Which is where the binary comes in.

We are all a mixture of 1s and 0s. Male, female, trans, GQ… We have a blend that is uniquely ours. I don’t know a single person who is all 1s or all 0s on any gender-based scale (however erroneous that might be).

Or all Yin and no Yang or vice versa.

The Prompt

I’d love to hear your thoughts and your viewpoints on gender, gender roles and sexual identity as it relates to interactions and relationships.

    • Do you search out the differences?
    • The similarities?
    • How do they affect your D/s relations?
    • How do they affect or engage your friendships?
    • Do you have gender or binary differences that have impacted your life?

Feel free to write in your own blog and link me to it, or just think on it or write on it and keep it to yourself, if you prefer.

I have already started my piece (just like usual) and I’ll post it soon. I don’t want to influence anyone, though, as I love the idea of getting your honest and gut-instinct responses.

Write a sentence. Or a paragraph. Or an essay. Or whatever this is to you. Talk it out. Make it yours.

I’m looking forward to reading your responses!

 

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Poly is NOT Instant Gratification (Poly Is Not, Part III)

All over the web, you can read about poly. And if you have, you’ve probably realized that there are as many different versions of poly as there are people practicing it.

There are common threads, though.

One of these threads that I’ve seen is the trope of, “Secondaries are people and deserve to be treated equally with primaries.”

It’s often used to skewer couples opening up to a third, telling them they are doin’ it rong.

And this is a truth, but in my mind is not THE truth.

Because poly is not instant gratification.

Developing a relationship takes time.

If you come into my life, no matter how much I like you, you will not have the same trust, intimacy and primacy that my Pet has.

You will likely not even have the same trust, intimacy and primacy that my very good friends have.

Because you and I haven’t put in that time. We haven’t had those experiences. We’ve not developed that bond.

To me, poly is not the guarantee of friendship or love or sex.

It is the POSSIBILITY of it.

It is being open to allowing any relationship to develop as deeply and widely as the relationship can handle.

It is the opportunity to create something deep and meaningful and loving and sexy and creative and silly and moving and profound and committed and… whatever…

OF YOUR OWN.

Yours and mine. Or yours and whomever.

But, what about equality?

The way I see it, it’s perfect equality. You have every opportunity to earn love and depth and respect and desire and all the good stuff, alongside the arguments and misunderstandings and little hurts and “we have to have a talk” times, just like my Pet did. just like my friends have.

Just because I’m poly does not mean you get a shortcut to the head of the line, so you can feel equal to another without putting in the safe types of time and effort they did.

Just because your new potential partner is poly does not mean that you get to sacrifice all the dating and romance and stuff and go straight to the sex, because “They get the mushy stuff from their primary.”

The primary gets all that amazing sexy fun and prioritizing because they put in the mushy stuff (or whatever else they put in).

You can, too.

Or not.

Poly relationships take time to develop.

They take time. They take commitment. They take communication.

And even with all of that, there is no guarantee that it will work. You have an equal chance, is all.

Just like with every other relationship.

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Do We Really Have To Give It All Away?

This morning, as I was perusing the Book of Faces, I found a quote:

“I,” she says, “am always stuck. I am always stuck between giving people everything because I am dying to create meaningful relationships, and giving them nothing at all because then if they leave, at least I’ll be left whole.” — S.Z. // Excerpt from a book I’ll never write #138

And I felt sad reading this. And had one thought:

Can’t we just share, instead?

Instead of giving our lives to our partner, can’t we share them?
Instead of giving our love to our lovers, can’t we share it?
Instead of giving everything to our paramour, can’t we share it all?

Do we really have to just give it all away?

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