Category Archives: Relationships
I seem to be doing a whole series here, don’t I?
One of the comments that was made reminded me about another thing that I think is important about finding a new partner.
Sometimes it’s also about letting go of the old partner.
Sometimes that’s one of the harder parts, I think.
There are usually two varieties.
One is, the person who’s ex was SO incredible and SO perfect and SO amazing that it’s hard for anyone else to measure up.
The other is the person who’s ex was SO awful and SO horrible and SUCH a complete asshole that they can’t seem to see past that to anyone else.
The first one is hard, for sure.
When you have to follow a saint, it’s hard to live up to it.
Their former Master or Mistress was the love of their life, the be all and end all of all BDSM and kink, the perfect melding of demanding and nurturing.
Their former submissive knew them so well that they never had to ask for anything, everything was already in place, they were pliable and compliant and obedient and, in short, perfect.
Sometimes we have to remind ourselves that they were not, indeed, perfect. The Master/Mistress was also probably grouchy and unreasonable on occasion, and the slave was not always so accommodating and well-versed.
We have to remind ourselves that no person was all good, or all bad.
Then there’s the other side.
I bet you’ve seen it, too.
The person who can hardly speak without spewing bile about their former relationship.
I have a friend who went through a relatively messy divorce a couple years ago.
It got to the point that I honestly avoided her because her primary and initial topic of conversation was always her asshole ex-husband and the asshole things he had said, or done, or was threatening to do, or not do.
It didn’t require an inquiry.
It wasn’t in response to, “How are you? How’s the divorce going?”
It was in response to “Hey, nice to see you.”
I think it never occurred to my friend how she came across. She was SO caught up in the miasma of her life – there were challenging children involved, too – that she couldn’t step back and see.
One of the other things that always occurs to me, when I encounter someone who has nothing but unkind things to say about an ex is, one of these days it’s going to be me.
It’s also true that I don’t think it says anything good about you and your judgement. If the person you last hitched your wagon to was so horrific… Um… Well, gee. That sort of means your judgement might not be all it could be, either.
Now, I know sometimes people change, but even so, most of the time the change is not that profound. Most of the time, the person you “married,” for lack of a better term, is pretty close to the same person you “divorced.”
It’s also true that while it’s possible that the reviled one was 100% at fault, it’s uncommon.
Almost every ended relationship I’ve ever seen was at least 70%/30%. If nothing else, you stayed with someone who was an asshole for longer than might point to your good judgement.
So, if someone has nothing but bad to say about a former love, well, that tells me something.
I don’t mean that you can’t talk about issues with your friends, or that you always have to put on a brave front, but in general, a brave front will go a long way to creating a brave back, too.
Fake it until you make it.
Learn to say, “You know, I think we were both at fault, but I learned a lot, so that’s a good thing.”
Save the in-depth bitching for your friends, the people who talk about their past escapades to you, too.
When you look around, too, don’t focus entirely on what you DON’T want.
I don’t want anyone who is not local, who has small children, or is much under 30 years old. I DO want someone who is smart, funny, mature, stable, and wants to be submissive.
Notice there’s a reasonable balance there. There are a few things I don’t want, and things I do want, and I think it’s a mistake to focus too much on one or the other.
I see profiles that tell me all the things they don’t want, which are often rather obvious.
They list that they want honest people, and fun people, and people who are drama-free.
Not me. I am looking for lying, boring and bat shit crazy people.
No, wait, no, I’m not.
It’s rarely wise to jump from one important relationship to another. Spend some time putting a period at the end of the sentence rather than just adding a semi-colon and moving on.
Once in a while, it’s true, the person that you meet a month after the worst breakup of your life IS the love of your life, the person with whom you are, you should pardon the expression, “tied” to for life.
But most of the time it’s not. Most of the time it’s just a rebound, and rebounds can be fun, just as one-night stands can be, so long as everyone is on the same page.
I think the best thing to do is to behave a bit like you’re just beginning to date and you have fairly strict parents.
Go out in groups.
Go to parties.
Avoid sleepover parties.
Date a lot of people casually.
Give yourself a break, give yourself time to heal and move on.
You can’t attract a new partner if you’re still focused on the old one.
And please remember to update your bookmarks for my new home on the web, which you can find here.
So, I’ve talked about knowing what you want, what you are looking for, what you will compromise on, all that.
I think it’s important to recognize that, however much you might dislike the thought, you may never find the relationship for which you are looking.
Not a happy thought, maybe, but possible.
I think first you need to make a life that you can live, even if you never have anyone else to share it in the way you’d like.
I see people who put their life on hold until…
Until the fabled day when your life becomes perfect, when that life includes the perfect Master and perfect slave, or dominant or submissive, or whatever it is that you put there when you fill in the blanks.
Once you have that, well, then, your life will be perfect and everything will fall into place.
Unless that never happens.
Again, I don’t mean to be a downer there, but I think we all need to accept that our lives may never have all the things in them that we would like, whether those things are people or things, experiences or adventures.
One can either sit and wait for one’s life to begin and find, perhaps, that one has reached the end of it without it ever really beginning, or one can build a life that is at least full, even if it doesn’t contain all of our desires.
It is also true that most of us find the person far more appealing who has a life that is full and happy, even if they’d like to have more in it, as opposed to the person who sits and weeps about what they don’t have, focusing always on what is missing rather than what is present.
I do tend to be a half-full kind of girl, that’s probably obvious.
The old saying is, when the student is ready, the teacher will appear, and I tend to think that’s true, or at least, when we are ready and our eyes are open, we see the opportunities around us.
When we have been realistic about what it is for which we are looking, when we have defined our terms and sifted our needs our from our wants, once we’ve done all that, I think that we can open our eyes to what might be out there.
I always encourage people to become involved. For me, that means the kink community, but I do recognize that’s not for everyone.
I think if you’re looking for kink relationships, and don’t want to be involved in the kink community at all, then you’re missing out on a lot of opportunities, but that’s beside the point.
Find what interests you and pursue it, whatever that is. Join a book club or take cooking classes or get involved in your church or volunteer at your local food kitchen or SOMETHING.
Again, I think it makes a great deal more sense to go to a munch or a kink gathering, and I think everyone needs to consider it, at least. While your kink might be a private one, if it’s too private, finding anyone else who shares it is going to be challenging.
The person who interests me, at least, is someone whom, when I say, tell me about your hobbies and interests, lists a few things. Things that are not all televised sports.
When your life is full, it’s amazing how much more likely it is that you’ll need to make room in it for more. And if, to your great sorrow, you never have to do that, isn’t it better to have a life that is full except for this thing, as opposed to a life that has nothing in it at all?
And please remember to update your bookmarks for my new home on the web, which you can find here.
I’ve been talking about finding a partner, and I’ve spoken mostly about being realistic about what it is you want, and what you have to offer, and about monogamy and non-monogamy.
I want to say, too, that I believe that whatever you want, there’s someone out there who is interested in the same thing.
You don’t have to settle, but you may well have to accept that your pool is smaller than you’d like.
I could have five new submissives by the end of the evening, using only Fetlife and text messages, but how worthwhile would those submissives be?
Many of you submissives who bemoan finding a dominant are not really saying there are NO dominants, they are saying that the dominants out there are not worth your time or effort, and I would agree.
No one ever said it was easy.
Vanilla relationships are easy, right? It’s a piece of cake to find what you want and need and like, right? So clearly, adding one more piece to the mix, well, that wouldn’t make it any harder, right? Not at all, surely?
So, relationships are hard, and kink relationships are also hard. Finding people who suit is never easy.
However, if you can’t even honestly articulate what it is you want, those chances go way down.
If what you want is to have an occasional play partner who likes kinky sex with spankings and some rope, well, those people are out there.
If what you want is a 24/7 total power exchange dynamic where every part of life is controlled, well, those people are out there, too.
But you can see how it might be hard to find what you want if you aren’t labeling it accurately.
SAYING you want a TPE and really being unwilling to have control go farther than the bed, well, that’s going to make it hard to make that vision a reality.
I think we so often mislabel ourselves, particularly when we’re new. People use the vocabulary they see without trying to figure out if it’s really what they are, and that’s compounded by the fact that our vocabulary is somewhat fluid, and has few absolutes within it.
I can tell you what I think a bottom is versus a submissive versus a slave, but that’s only my interpretation. Six other people would have at least six other definitions.
Mine would be correct, of course.
And even within my always-correct definitions are some contradictions and caveats.
For instance, slave drew is not submissive. Not even a little. He’s submissive towards ME and he’s generally courteous and respectful to most people, mostly. Mostly.
But he’s not a bit submissive.
It was quite funny last fall when he came in second for the local Munchie awards in the category of Most Admired Submissive.
Our reaction was, Have they ever MET you?
So, add that into the mix, the occasional wiggle room for the vagaries of life, and what you have is something that makes it that much harder to find those with whom we are compatible.
I think that the people who have the most successful kinky relationships are generally the ones who have spent the most time inside their own heads, poking around.
For a lot of people, too, finally finding someone who is at least open to the dark recesses that they’ve kept mostly hidden can be wildly intoxicating and that makes them less than discriminating about their partners.
It’s kind of like saying, “Oh, wow, you love missionary position, so do I, clearly, we are soul mates,” or “OMG, your favorite band is Maroon 5? Mine is, TOO! We are destined to spend eternity together.”
Those discoveries might be either nice bonuses, or possibly the basis of a friendship, but do not indicate soul mate status.
We forget sometimes that relationships are relationships. If you’re not compatible on more than a surface level, it’s probably not going to work, however great that level does work.
On the other hand, one thing that can be very freeing about kinky relationship is that kinky relationships already don’t fit into a lot of the boxes that we grew up thinking were the norm and the target.
In the vanilla world, being a control freak or a masochist are usually seen as bad.
Kinky relationships offer a lot of different KINDS of relationships.
You can really define the relationship you want. It might not be what you can find, to be sure, but you can at least define an ideal, and go from there.
And please remember to update your bookmarks for my new home on the web, which you can find here.
I am doing a class next week on Attracting a Partner.
It used to be called, Attracting a Dominant, but then the more I did it the more I realized that the same things went into both sides of it, or many of the same anyway, and it seemed silly to do a class that applied to both but marketed to one.
At the Sunday munch last week, I ended up giving a sort of impromptu vision of what I think is important in finding a partner.
On one level, it’s funny, because I say the same thing in all my classes, on the other hand, it’s not funny at all, really.
The first step is always knowing yourself.
If you do not know what you want, if you are unable to define it and communicate it, the likelihood that you will find it goes WAY down.
I think one of the reasons that can be hard is that it requires a certain level of honesty with yourself, and sometimes that’s not the prettiest side of our personality, or, rather, it’s not the way we THINK we should look.
Back in the last decade, when I was more focused on finding people, one of the things that mattered was that they not have children, at least children under a certain age, whom they had much contact with.
I don’t mean I preferred deadbeat dads, by the way.
But I don’t particularly like children. My not having children was not an accident, or a sorrow.
If a man had children that were still preteens, for instance, I believed they should be his primary focus, meaning I couldn’t be.
I want your attention. Children interfere – and should. Ergo, no children.
I also like decorative playmates and partners. I am shallow. I’m also a big believer in physical attraction.
I am not perfect, nor do I expect others to be, but I do like good-looking playmates, and that weighs heavily in my decisions.
Those are not overly flattering recognitions about oneself, but if I think that an unattractive guy with three small kids will work for me, in the end, we’re both going to waste our time.
I think you have to be realistic about what you have to offer, too, in the sense of time and commitment. It might be fun to fantasize about being kept naked and chained 24/7, but if you have a mortgage and a job, then that’s probably not realistic, unless you find someone with an estate and a lot of disposable income.
It’s not impossible, but you might not have a very broad pool of candidates from which to draw.
Sometimes it can feel like we’re failing ourselves if we’re not as “committed” as we think we ought to be, or as other people are.
My kink life really IS my life. I do little that doesn’t have kink components. Most of my social interactions are kink-related. Most of my travel is kink-related. Most of my relationships are kink-related.
Personally, I was never looking for something that was just in the bedroom. If you’re unwilling to go to an event with me, or a munch, or a party, then, I’m probably not interested.
But that doesn’t mean everyone is so committed to this, or should be.
I don’t have blood family, or children. That doesn’t claim my time.
I was never overly career-driven. I gave what I had to give to get along. That didn’t claim my time.
Being realistic about what you have to give and want to get back is vital, I think, to actually GETTING it.
Remember – I have a new website on my OWN domain up and running. It’s the same right now, but in time this one will likely not be updated as often – better get your bookmarks updated!
And a LINK to the new site would be incredibly helpful, wouldn’t it? Thanks to the MonkeysJourney blog for the reminder.
You can find my new home here.
jade, over at The Chrysanthemum and The Sword, wrote an interesting post – well, I find that many of the posts she writes are particularly interesting.
Anyway, she talked about “The Perfect Slave,” and “The Perfect Master.”
Perfection has honestly never been that appealing to me.
I think, for one thing, that I would find perfection in a slave somewhat intimidating.
If, for instance, you’re a perfect slave but I find a flaw – I don’t like the way you fold my towels or the food you cook – then doesn’t that rather imply the flaw is with me?
If you’re perfect, then I have to be perfect, too.
And I am not perfect, nor do I aspire to be.
I aspire to be many things, a kind person, a good leader, a wise dominant, but I do not aspire to be perfect.
Perfection is so confining. I suspect it’s like the house in which Alice finds herself in Wonderland, after she eats the cake or drinks the potion, whichever it is, and begins to grow.
The walls confine her and hold her, and she becomes more and more uncomfortable as she does.
Perfection must be like that, don’t you think? If I have to be perfect, it’s got to be like being on 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.
Perfection seems so one-dimensional, too. A flat surface, one without much depth or texture. If you’re perfect, you can’t really step out of that comfort zone, can’t really take a risk, can’t really try something new because if it doesn’t work out, well, I might not be perfect.
Perfection is not very lovable, either.
I believe that a slave wants to be proud of the person whom they serve, they want to believe that their Master is extraordinary, maybe even that they are the perfect Master for them.
But if you believe I am perfect, then I have to believe that you are not very discerning, that you are unwilling to see me with clear eyes and, also disturbingly, because that tells me that I cannot trust you to tell me the truth.
To be clear, I would not care for a slave who made it a point to comment on and elaborate on my faults. That would not go over well.
However, if I’m doing something that is a bad idea, or something that might result in a truly bad outcome, I expect that my slave will tell me that. I believe that the slave’s highest purpose is to be my sounding board, be my eyes and ears and hands and heart in ways which I cannot be them for myself.
And if I have to be perfect, too, then that means you can’t do that because I can’t be less than perfect, if I have to have a perfect slave.
You certainly can’t be more perfect than I am, right?
That would mean that you were not really perfect, right?
It has been a strange few days in several ways.
I had gotten a letter earlier this week from the daughter of a woman I grew up with. She was a friend of my mother’s, though, over time, she became more a friend of mine.
I had visited her when we were on our honeymoon and went back to my hometown. She was Portuguese in heritage, and an artist. She and her husband owned a little junk shop in the town I grew up in, a place that we visited regularly.
She sold comics and books and I remember taking old ones in and trading them for different used books and comics.
It was in her store that I clearly remember seeing a rhinestone brooch and telling my mother how pretty it would be on a black dress.
I was all of nine or ten and I remember my mother saying, “But you don’t HAVE a black dress.”
I remember buying a hand colored photograph there, which still hangs on my wall in the living room, titled “The Great Wayside Oak.”
It was the first thing I ever bought myself that wasn’t something to read, or wear, something relatively practical. It wasn’t expensive, $1 or less – it was a long time ago, remember.
She was also an accomplished artist, with works in collections all across the west. The first piece of original art I ever bought was by her, a pastel of a Chinatown street at night, in the rain.
I also have a small sketch she did of me, when we both took an art class. She sketched me, as I sketched, and gave me the piece afterwards.
I had sent her a Christmas card this year, as I always did, and her daughter responded to let me know that she had passed away this past fall, two days before my birthday.
Her note was lovely, and said, in part, “Yours is a lovely name and fitting, too, when I consider the ways in which you remembered, visited, and wrote to my mom.”
Mrs. Cooper, Audrey, was the first person to encourage me to make art myself. She mattered to me, and I’m sorry she’s gone, but glad, for her sake, that as her daughter said, “She died in the same way as she lived – on her own terms, in her own way and as nature intended her to go.”
My half brother, Thomas, was born to my father and his first wife, Florence, on February 28, 1934. My father would have been 32 at the time.
His parents divorced while he was still young and my father married again. My brothers were born in 1946 and 1948, and I in 1957.
I never met Thomas, but I corresponded with him over the years. His mother was always lovely to me, far nicer than my mother ever would have been to her, or to her son. She died ten or more years back, and he let me know.
He had graduated from Annapolis, and worked in the space program for a number of years. I was told by one of the other family members that after the Challenger explosion he lost his heart for it and retired soon after.
When we married, I sent him an invitation, really as a notice more than anything else, and a few weeks later, I got a package from him. He’d sent me some silver that was from my family, an old knife, fork and spoon from the 1880’s or so, engraved with the name of a long dead aunt, Alice.
He also sent me a set of fruit knives with a beautiful brocade pattern on the handles, and a set of fruit spoons with lovely faceted bowls.
It was a completely unexpected gesture of generosity, and I was genuinely touched by it.
Each year I got a card from him detailing what he and his wife, Betsy, had done over the year, you know the kind. I always read it, and always responded with a card, letting him know how my two brothers and I were. I sent a photo, usually, as well.
On the 24th of December, he called me and left a message, asking for my email because he’d lost it, and inviting me to call him back, or email.
Those of you who know me will know I emailed him, but kept the message and entered his information into my phone.
I got another email this afternoon, telling me Thomas had passed away on Sunday, the day that was so gray here and was such a difficult day.
So, requiescat in pace Mrs. Cooper and Thomas McColloch. I will miss you both, and I will think of you more often than either of you might expect, often enough, I suspect, to surprise myself.
I spent some time today going through an old hard drive.
I found several things I’d been looking for, including, hallelujah, that story about the cat named Stiletto.
It needs a bit of reworking, the place it ended up was a bit different than the place it began and I want to work on it a bit, but I am much happier to have found it.
I found some other things, too, some bits and pieces of writing, some things that I was glad to find, some I’d forgotten, some I’d remembered but given up on.
One of the things I found was something I’d written about advice, and one part of it in particular struck me.
Someone a long time ago gave me a lot of good advice, but one of the ones I had mostly forgotten was, “Nothing is wasted.”
Everything prepares us for the next thing.
Our lives are linear; we cannot get from one point to the next without passing through all the stages in between.
Nothing is wasted.
We learn from it, we gain insight and understanding, we develop scars to remind us of the lessons. Every experience has value.
Nothing is wasted.
It isn’t always pleasant. It often isn’t, in fact. Life isn’t always gentle in the ways in which it handles us.
Sometimes it feels like we stumble along, tripping over our own feet. Or at least I do, and I doubt I’m alone.
But even when we stumble, it teaches us something, I think, if only to look where we are placing our own feet.
I also like the cosmic message there. Nothing is wasted.
Time isn’t wasted, not really. Sometimes what feels like time wasted is really a lesson in patience. It is a lesson, sometimes, in learning what we can, and can’t, control, and how much, or little, that control matters.
Love isn’t wasted, even if it’s not returned. We are, I think, transformed not by the love that we receive as much as the love we give. Receiving is nice, and it gives us validation and a lot of other things, for sure, but it is the live we give that teaches us, the transforms us.
Pain isn’t wasted. It forges us, it makes us better, or stronger, or it breaks us, and sometimes we have to be broken before we can be remade. The pot that can’t stand the kiln may shatter, but the pieces can be used to form a mosaic, too, another pattern that is not what we imagined at first, but something valuable nonetheless.
Paralysis isn’t wasted. I think the inability to move forward, or what feels like that, is often really the lesson in listening to oneself, that small, still voice that is so often drowned out, when the world is too much with us, late and soon.
As little as I like lack of productivity, I need to remind myself that that is also not wasted, that sometimes what we need to move forward is the time to rest and gather energy.
Nothing is wasted.
One of the topics that’s been discussed some lately is the fact that sometimes dominants give commands that don’t quite seem like commands.
I suppose that must seem very odd to submissives, that we do that. We can, so easily it seems, just give that command.
We can TELL you what to do.
So why don’t we just TELL you sometimes?
There’s often a reason, you know.
You could do your child’s math homework. You know, at least one hopes you know, how to do fractions. If you were looking to solve the problem of the answer to the equation of 2 2/3 times 3 and 3/8ths, you understand the process.
You find the common denominator and translate the equations into those common denominators, you multiply the numerators, then you simplify the result again.
It would probably take you less time than it takes your child as he struggles with the concepts and the math.
It would certainly be easier. You could do that and then both of you could move on and do something else.
But, you’re saying, then he’d never learn how to do it himself.
He’d never learn how to do it himself.
Sometimes giving an order is sort of like giving someone the answer. I want you to start doing X or stop doing Y or change the way you do Z.
It’s simple, it’s direct, it gets to the answer quickly, and the answer is “right.” You don’t have to make so much space in your brain for it, do you?
And it’s so much EASIER, isn’t it?
And, when it’s done, and you have the answer, what did you learn?
Sometimes that’s ok. Sometimes you don’t NEED to learn anything. Just fold my towels long ways first because that’s how I want them folded. No need to justify it or explain it or learn anything other than, that’s how I want it done.
But sometimes, it’s not.
If you’re trying to teach something, it’s always more work.
But it’s kind of like that giving a man a fish versus teaching him how to fish thing.
If I always give you the answer, then it never takes up the space in your head.
And it’s one thing when it’s towels, because it’s pretty finite and concrete. Even if you fold one of my towels wrong, nothing bad happens. I might make you refold it, but the quality of our lives is not lessened.
If I give you nudge in the direction in which I want you to go, though, if I give you an idea of what I think the destination should be, but don’t lay out the specific path, it’s more likely you’ll learn something from it.
When the similar situation confronts you again, you know how to handle it, or at least have a better sense of how to handle it, because you have experience with it.
Sometimes, too, we don’t give orders because a smart dominant doesn’t give an order that a submissive can’t obey.
It’s both pointless and ineffective to tell someone they shouldn’t feel guilty, for instance.
I can command you not to, but what that is actually going to do, most likely, is double your guilt. You’re still going to feel guilty about the initial thing, but you’re also going to feel guilty about feeling guilty because now you’re also disobeying.
Sometimes those suggested commands are like holding out your hand, offering a steadying presence, suggesting a path rather than directing one.
Sometimes it’s because we believe that you need to work through the problem yourself, not just be given the answer.
I got some things done and I feel much less overwhelmed.
The dining room is taking shape. We, meaning slave drew, put up a shelf piece and we did the window treatment we’d planned – I have a window that looks into an added-on garage, and the view was not lovely.
We figured out some of the lighting, which took longer than you might think because it also involved drilling holes in the cabinet itself to reach the outlet.
I found my crock pot meaning, oops, I had to find a place for my crock pot. I did, however.
I got to the grocery and mostly figured out what I’m doing and when and where and what I need for it.
I got my nails done. In honor of the James Bond movies drew and I have watched lately, the color I picked is, “The Spy Who Loved Me.”
Bright kind of cherry red, with a bit of glitter. If you were wondering.
I got fridges cleaned out so I’d have room.
I took care of three or four of the items on my to do list, too, of the email and phone sort.
In one case, it seems that my being slow in following up n something is actually going to work in my benefit, so that’s the payoff for procrastination, I suppose.
I can see an end, which is helpful.
Or at least an end to the time when I have dining room chairs upended on top of each other and the silver chest is no longer resting on the upside down rungs.
So, all things considered, I got a lot done today, and that always makes me feel better.
I’m a Virgo, after all, and you may say many things about Virgos, we are rarely called lazy. Industrious suits us.
And, lest she think I forgot, I want to talk about the SIG groups one more time before ending.
I was, as I have said, kind of doing a lot of business, and that meant I was doing a lot of speaking.
I said something, and I don’t recall what, but perhaps on the order of what a shy and delicate creature I am, or something equally plausible.
From down the table, on the other side, came snort.
It was a quiet snort, really, almost delicate, but it was a snort.
The kind of snort that one might emit when confronted with something they found so unbelievable as to be ludicrous.
You know, like me being a shy and delicate creature.
I looked down the table to where aisha was sitting.
aisha, who had clearly been the one to make that noise, looked as submissives always due when put in that particular position, flushed, laughed, and said, “Oh, did I do that out loud?”
Yes, THAT aisha.
She thought I forgot because I hadn’t mentioned it.
She thought I wouldn’t mention it.
She read through that blog and breathed a sigh of relief because I hadn’t mentioned it, hadn’t brought it up and she thought, Oh, wow, maybe I lucked out…
You know she did.
But I didn’t.
In reality, of course, it was very funny, and also lead to another amusement I also didn’t mention. aisha had suggested maybe rearranging some of the tables for better meetings, and the dominants all moved to the back, leaving the submissives, maybe 10 or 12 of them, sort of moving tables and shuffling, trying to be very polite to each other and no one willing to really say, ok, this is what we have to do.
One of the men in my group laughed and said, “This is going to take them all night.”