Kink in exile

Notes from a kinky nomad

Working toward monogamy

Written this morning:

I’m slowly waking a little too early in the morning with Black Sabbath, a cup if tea, and way too many fragments of thought working their way through my brain. I’m feeling stuck in my writing – likely a mix of being overly busy, a head cold I can’t shake, and being just downright stuck in my own feelings around some of the things I want to write about.

After being religiously poly for, what, a decade now? I am catching myself looking toward monogamy.  The funny part is that my perception of what I want – a contained relationship with occasional other involvements at parties or some other flexible spaces – is monogamy.  When I describe it to others they insist that this isn’t actually monogamous at all. Whatever it is, it is different than the arrangements I typically make with my partners and that is giving me pause.

I don’t know if this is a permanent change, though I suspect not.  If not, I don’t know how long it may last.  I am willing to believe that this is indicative of not being ready to date after my last relationship, but my gut says that’s not the real cause.  I am certain that I am burnt out on managing other peoples partners and yet I have historically had solid and friendly relationships, if not close friendships, with my partners’ other lovers.

In part I want to explore more control in a D/s space and that is challenging when your relationship must accommodate others outside of that dynamic.  In part I think I’m just shifting to a new life stage and re-thinking how I do relationships is a piece of that. The nice thing though is that I am actually creating a lot of stability in other areas of my life, which gives me bandwidth to shake up my love life so maybe once I stop flipping out about “OMG change” I can have some fun building whatever comes next.

And some evening thoughts:

Ever since going to Arse Elektronika I’ve been fascinated by the idea of Nordic Larping as a way to prototype experience and take deep but time constrained emotional dives.  A little while back I was thinking about a fantasy world where I would come home from work one day to dinner on the stove, a naked man scrubbing my bathtub, and two years of shared history behind us.  Maymay joked that I should totally LARP this scenario since a LARP (Live Action Role Play) allows you to institute significant history and background in very little time.  He did add that I may have to fly to Helsinki to do this, but frankly, I’d be more than happy to fly to Helsinki if I got to do a dry run of my dream relationship model before trying to implement it for realzies…I mean, what if after two years I realize that scrubbing the bathtub is actually how I relax after a long day of work and I no longer have access to that activity?

Which brings me to another question entirely; how is a BDSM scene different from a LARP?  And, unrelated, how do you prototype emotional experiences in safe and bound ways while still making them immersive and authentic?



Written by kinkinexile

October 12, 2011 at 7:44 pm

Posted in headspace, personal

4 Responses

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  1. J. Tuomas Harviainen has answered your question more thoroughly than most people care to read, in his paper “Sadomasochist Role-Playing as Live-Action Role-Playing: A Trait-Descriptive Analysis”, available in here:

    He has also organized several BDSM larps, as you probably noticed from Nordic Larp.


    – M


    October 14, 2011 at 2:29 am

  2. I think what you describe sounds monogamish or open-relationship-ish, and I totally understand why you might describe it as monogamy since it’s further towards that axis than you’ve played with before. But actual monogamy means NEVER EVER sleeping with someone else, which probably you would think is totally extreme. [grin]

    I’ve always found BDSM scenes rather different from LARPs, but part of that is I haven’t done too much BDSM roleplay, and also I think that most LARPs I’ve been involved with aren’t actually supposed to be sexual. I feel that you’re really just talking about role-play, which can be done in a BDSM context as well as a LARP context because it just means to play pretend. Why can’t you just do that at home? What does Helsinki get you?

    I think there will always be a tension between “safety” and “authenticity” in roleplaying. You get the space to explore certain things, but the fact that it’s a safe place to explore also makes it less authentic because you might react differently when it isn’t a safe place, when it’s “for realzies”.


    October 15, 2011 at 8:12 am

  3. Ironrose, I think you’re right, I am talking monogamish rather than monogamy. I guess what I’m really talking (and pardon my startup speak here) is creating a new relationship incubator that allows a lot of foundation work to happen quickly, cheaply, and in a supported environment. I guess because I am narrowing down on what I want I am looking for a way to do rapid prototyping with relationship structures instead of the usual way of going through lots of iterations either with different partners or cycles or arguments and working things out. Maybe I’m over-thinking it?

    Where the relationship incubator meets monogamy is that I want to build my relationship in a small experimental and safe project environment before opening it up to the outside world which includes other partners, sexy parties, work stress, travel etc. On the other hand, there is a lot to be said for working out the systems of getting other partners involved from the get go, so maybe that won’t work at all.


    October 16, 2011 at 10:49 am

  4. Incubation of relationships sounds fantastic if it could be made to work. However it would probably need to have the partners involved as well at least in some stage of the incubation. Like when training dogs you establish the boundaries with one, then the other, then bring both together.

    Rapid prototyping. Incubation. Feels crazy to apply to relationships but could it be possible?

    Twoo Domina (@TwooDomina)

    November 4, 2011 at 12:24 pm

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