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Your Call – He’s Kinky, She’s Vanilla, Is the Relationship Doomed?

Tue, Jun 8, 2010

Advice, Dear Em & Lo, Your Call

photo by Darth Fett

Share your advice for this reader in the comments section below…

Dear Em & Lo,

I recently started dating a wonderful man. He’s smart, and interesting, and handsome and the sex has been delightful.

But not outstanding. But we’ve been working a fairly brisk learning curve and we can’t seem to get enough of each other anyway, and I’m stupidly happy in his arms so everything should be coming up roses, right?

Except for the GIANT black-leather-studded elephant in the room, which is his propensity towards BDSM. He hasn’t really trotted it out to me in a big way, but I know that I am decidedly NOT into whatever he’s into, eg: humiliation, manipulation, extreme bondage, violent spankings, etc. He’s brought it up a few times as something that he engages in as a significant part of his sexuality.

I’m definitely not that girl. I can’t imaging enjoying anything about it. I’m the type to be playful in bed, or silly, or just rut like an animal. But always as an equal to my partner. I don’t want to dominate OR be submissive as a defined and absolute role. Humiliation and manipulation, feeling powerless or at someone’s mercy…well, the thought of it frankly terrifies the hell out of me. And being scared does NOT turn me on. I might be the only woman in the world who doesn’t have  a rape fantasy.

I suppose it bears mention that I have a history of manipulation and abuse in my childhood. So having gone through many years and many thousands of dollars of therapy, I’m loathe to have someone assert control over me all over again.

So…is this doomed? The more I think about how this is an integral part of his sexuality, the more upset I get and want to run away. We’ve been having pretty much vanilla sex, and it’s good. But it’s not great. Not for either of us. For me, I think, it’s because I’m perpetually wondering if he’s going to do something that makes me ill at ease, or put me in a position where I will feel scared or somehow terrorized. And I know that’s what he wants, and that by my unwillingness to engage in BDSM, I’m robbing him of his desires. I mean, hell, it’s the only porn he has.

Should I break up with him? I’m definitely not the girl who will satisfy this for him.

– Vanilla Girl

What should Vanilla Girl do? Share your suggestions in the comments section below.

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87 Responses to “Your Call – He’s Kinky, She’s Vanilla, Is the Relationship Doomed?”

  1. confused yet interested Says:

    Thank you all for the various ideas, thoughts and suggestions. I have just met an amazing man after years and years of dating losers. Its a fairly new relationship and he has opened up to me that he enjoys being a sub…I do not know if I am capable of inflicting the pain he desires but I’m willing to try slowly and see how things go. I hope this can work because he seems truly perfect for me….I just hope I can be perfect for him!!

  2. stay true to you... Says:

    I can tell you most assuredly that after 20 years of trying to get into, come around, being open minded and participating in BDSM because your partner digs it and you don’t is a huge mistake.

    We are at a place now where while I love him I am pissed at him a lot of the time because of “this”.

    We are in therapy now to work out all of this because this stuff seeps into other areas of your life.

    I have invested many years with this guy and am raising a family with children. The idea of divorce is just off the table for us. It’s so important to work this out.

    Are we having sex now? Nope. I just won’t comply and engage in BDSM anymore.

    It’s not my thing. I don’t like it. I hate it. I have never liked it — and for a long time I did it happily to please him. When I should have been true to myself.

    I’d say have an HONEST conversation – don’t do what I did. Don’t please him because you think you need to.

  3. Dom Says:

    If you’re vanilla and he’s not you will either both compromise or you will both be unhappy. I can tell you from personal experience if he can’t get what he needs (and believe me…it IS a NEED) from you he will get it elsewhere, no matter how much he loves you.

    My suggestion is to allow him to keep a sub outside of your relationship (or in it if you’re interested). That way he has an outlet for his kink and you can concentrate on more important aspects of the relationship.

  4. sally Says:

    Rarely will his need fade and you already admitted <>
    my thoughts here are that he may be satisfied with mental imagery, but from your words, I doubt it. You are uncomfortable and best advice is to open the door and maneuver through it before you get further entangled or hurt.

  5. Lockedup84 Says:

    I have always been into the kinky side of things. When me and my wife meet we had a lot of fun and conversations about weather she was into it or not. I enjoy subbing more so she wasn’t the one getting tied up and beat and stuff. But after we got married I started pushing for the attention (me and my first wife would switch) which she realized wasn’t what she thought. After some time and trials and near divorce she holds the keys to my chastity which is a good start.

    I said all this to say that if it is that big a thing for him and you can’t come to a agreement in for filling that part of his life it’s not worth it. The fact you came online to ask is a good indication you should break it off. If my wife wouldn’t of done something then I would I found it else where

  6. sara Says:

    I have known my husband for 9 years. We dated for about a year before getting engaged, and married a year after that. We have 2 children under 5. I knew about some of his BDSM interests when we were dating, but to me at that time they were just that; interests. I was in love, somewhat insecure and wanted to make a lasting relationship. So we experimented, and the result was that he wanted more and I didn’t want anything other than vanilla. Sadly, the truth of this has only come to light after years of marriage. If he tries to compromise his desires (this doesn’t happen often) and keep our sex life vanilla, he eventually gets frustrated and we have a huge fight. If I compromise and let him do the kinky tying up, power play, spanking, punishment stuff that he wants then I don’t enjoy the sex and feel really awful about myself afterward. It also makes me feel extremely resentful of him. I want ME to be enough. What ends up happening is we have no sex at all for long periods of time. If there were areas of overlap in our interests, then maybe that would help, but after all this time they are few and far between. Our relationship outside of the bedroom has suffered and we are to the point of living like roommates. When we do have sex, at least one of us ends up unhappy because we aren’t getting what we want. His interest has only deepened over time (or at least my knowledge of it has) and he now wants a 24/7/365 relationship of my submitting to him. Not just in the bedroom but in all aspects of life. I do not feel like my giving in to these demands will empower me in any way. I understand that there are people out there who have these relationships and both partners are completely happy. After 9 years of trying to get interested, I think its safe to say it won’t happen soon for me. I feel like I am objectified and not appreciated for being who I really am. And I feel extremely stuck in the relationship because we have children, he works and I stay at home, etc. I never imagined that my marriage might result in divorce and I believe that the work it takes to keep a marriage together is worth it. BUT we don’t have much left at this point, and it seems like neither of us is likely to change as much as would be needed. Do yourself a favor and don’t get in as deep as I did before you admit that there is a serious problem. It is no different than being incompatible in any other aspect, as some other posters have pointed out. It is better to open your eyes to the problem now. BTW if anyone has any advice for me I would really appreciate it. I feel like my love life is over at 31 and that is very depressing.

  7. AndySea Says:

    D/s relationships are a very amplified version of the sexual polarity that *usually* exists in intimate relationships anyway. The masculine partner in a vanilla relationship is still typically more assertive, conquering, and providing while the feminine is more acquiescent, feeling, and nurturing. It’s the interaction between these opposites that generates attraction as by their very natures they tend to seek each other out.
    Forgive me if I speak in generalities here. The world is full of all kinds and more power to us all. I’m generally speaking of the 80% or so of relationships between masculine (usually men) and feminine (usually women) partners. Also, there are egalitarian relationships of equals out there, but the sexual spark is never as strong; the attraction there has been established above the neck. And that’s great… if that’s your thing and all you need in life.
    But consider the similarities between vanilla and kinky folk:
    A Dominant, a good one -just like a good vanilla man (or whatever gender is the partner who generally takes the “masculine” roll)- is assertive, trustworthy, honest, attentive, caring, and focused on the needs of his partner. A good sub, just like a good vanilla “woman” (again, YMMV regarding gender) is yielding (generally-except when it’s time to push back a bit for good measure ;) ), a beautiful magnet for his desire, craving of the Dominant’s or “man’s” strength, conquest, and steadfastness.
    The “yen/yang,” opposites attract magic that happens here is something to be cherished. And the kink, or any other type of relationship for that matter, can happen or even strengthen the bonds of the relationship where trust is built and honored constantly. Hard limits should be respected and soft ones should be pushed in a measured way that simultaneously demonstrates the The Dominant’s power and his care, the two of which have earned “her” submission.

    Sorry for the essay on D/s vs vanilla sexual polarity, but I get a sense from your post that you’re giving kink very short shrift here, possibly holding it at arms length. Clearly going into a committed relationship involving marriage and a family is a bad idea if it’s something you just can’t work out. But ask yourself: Is he a good man? Is he’ just another instance of bad choices on your part? Does he truly understand and can he demonstrate his responsibility to care for you in your submission? And can YOU – this will heavily depend upon how you answered the questions above – trust him enough to truly and openly submit?
    Leave no topic undiscussed between you. Be clear on all your understandings of hard/soft limits, safe words, etc… and how your interaction will take shape. But I think you’re doing yourself a disservice if you don’t do some exploring and experimenting and see what power and beauty a D/s or BDSM relationship might have to offer.

  8. nancy Says:

    These are interesting and helpful comments. I have been married for 17 years and recently discovered my husband’s infidelity. He started with a porn addiction which affected our sex life negatively and now is in pretty deep in the BDSM world–of course never communicating to me about his desires. I knew something was “up” for about six months, and then started having him followed. Such a sad way for me to discover his alternative lifestyle. I had to have answers for his behavior and mood changes so I am not really sorry I did the surveillance thing. His personality changed in a negative way I might add. He became very disengaged from our children and myself. Irritable, self-centered and defensive about any kind of inquiries about his life. (I realize these are behaviors that anyone would demonstrate if having an affair). After I confronted him about his activities, we had huge communication sessions about what led up to this. We love each other dearly and have three wonderful children who deserve both parents in a loving household. It probably won’t be possible to continue with our relationship. He cries and says he wants a committed, loving, monogamous relationship with me, but knows in his heart the BDSD charge is very strong and admits it will be next to impossible to maintain fidelity in our marriage. I am sick about this, but don’t have an answer for any of it. I was sexually, emotionally, and verbally abused much of my childhood by an abusive stepfather. My mother was an extremely submissive person who “looked the other way” and accused me of lying when I would complain. I have worked extraordinarily hard to overcome the scars and damage from this. I am proud of myself for who I have become. I look for the light and positive in everything I do. My life is devoted to helping other people. BDSM has cast a very dark shadow over my children, my marriage and my future. Yes, I did try and be open to my husband and play the “sub role”. It sucked. Sorry, I don’t want to be spanked, tied up and blindfolded. I don’t want my husband to stick his penis in my mouth when I am in a vulnerable position. Doesn’t do it for me. I am not excited by the “confusion” that BDSM brings into the complicated division of “power” between a man and a wife. So, we will be divorcing soon. It is a no-win situation. My husband cries every day and says he knows he will not find happiness with a sub, but he is “just in too deep”. I have a hunch he is not going to make BDSM a lifetime commitment. I am looking forward to getting out of this mess and begin a life either on my own or with someone who will love me in a way that shares gentleness, warmth, care light and love. I want my children to experience what a relationship looks like from that perspective. I always wonder if people that are so enthusiastic about BDSM would want their children involved with this. Would you really want your daughter being a sex slave or sub to a dom? Would you want your son whipping his wife? Not me. Life is so full of wonderful things that include kindness and gentleness. I have walked both sides of the fence and there is nothing to me more exciting than a gentle caress, a supportive hug, a loving gaze, a meeting of the eyes while love-making, my husband’s head on my breasts, an equal say in decisions involving the household etc. It is not a boring vanilla lifestyle to experience these things, I promise you. Thanks for letting me vent.

  9. NonBDSMSexisHardlyVanilla Says:

    Bravo, Nancy, for conveying the reality of the deeply meaningful, pleasurable and beautiful aspects of sex without BDSM. I am sorry that your husband stumbled into this and the very negative impact it’s had on your marriage. Personally I do not buy the concept that the majority of people into BDSM were just wired that way. Sorry… it has so many qualities similar to addiction, including the “endorphin” rush of pain that gives the amped up orgasms which is called “sub space” or “top space” or “floating” etc… and then there’s “bottom”ing afterwards needing “aftercare.” And, much as the folk into it say you need great communication, trust, and the sub is the one with the “power”, it simply seems like you are hiding behind roles and engaged in “play scenes” instead of the real beauty, creativity of “unscripted” non-BDSM sexual intimacy. Sure… maybe the intensity of orgasm is heightened with BDSM, yet, no one talks about the real negative impact of BDSM on the individual (emotional, physical, etc) and on the couple where one person has “dabbled” into it and then is “in deep.” And, honestly, are we that self-centered a society that we have to get our fix come hell or high water? Yet, as the article so aptly suggests, if a person is then really into BDSM– AND not willing to consider re-learning the incredibly powerful and beautiful, pleasurable and intimacy-enhancing aspect of non-BDSM sex– then yes, that person will continue to fill unfulfilled sexually. What a shame our society is basically turned a blind eye to any discussions on how BDSM is possibly harming people’s sexuality (especially with it being so ubiquitous on the internet such that younger people (16-26) whose brains are still developing,… now their brains will only be able to get off on BDSM sex. Now that is a very sad thought indeed).

  10. NonBDSMSexisHardlyVanilla Says:

    Pardon spelling/grammar errors… towards the end of my comment, should have read “then yes, that person will continue to feel unfulfilled sexually. What a shame our society is basically turning a blind eye…” Otherwise the my reflections are accurately conveyed.

  11. Ditto Says:

    I’m going through the same thing with my guy. He’s the nicest most sweetest attentive guy. We get along great and share so many interests. We’ve been together for 4 months and have not really had sex yet :/ I think he’s afraid of scaring me away. What little I’ve experienced with him choking me has been scary. I don’t think he’s even capable of having vanilla sex anymore he’s been living that lifestyle for so long. He’s highly sexual, so I strongly suspect he has been finding it elsewhere already :/ Eventhough I he’s very sexually attracted to me, he can’t seem to have actual sex with me.

    I did a Google search to see how others are handling it. I think as much as we like each other we are going to have to split up.

  12. blah blah blacksheep Says:

    Money, sex & kids are the 3 make-or-break things in every relationship. A spender will have a hard time being with a saver. Two dominants or two submissives will have a hard time getting along in the bedroom. A breeder with a non-breeder usually won’t work out. And … a vanilla will have a hard time being with a bdsm’er.

    If you are not happy in all 3 of those major cateogries (money, sex, kids/ parenting style) then there will be major clashes and it won’t last.

    It’s better to break it off early, amicably.

    Find someone else you click with on those 3 things. Everything else you get along on is just icing on the cake.

  13. nancy Says:

    I do have to agree with the possibility of sexual addiction in many of the above situations. I know the concept of sexual addiction can be debated and many professionals have not reached an agreement on this topic. I myself do not buy into the “highly sexual” description many people use to define their sex drives. My husband uses this term a lot–he has a high sex drive–not an addiction. Except that his “high sex drive” has enticed him to “hook-up” with married women on Ashley Madison (Yucky Yucky women on that site–talk about SKANKY), view pornography almost daily, visit adult video stores frequently, and pressure me constantly about BDSM–as he says “just light bondage with ropes, blindfolds, collar and dog leash” and ” we’ll see where it goes”. I have so much resentment about his infidelity that I have no interest in being a sub. He has been seeing a counselor at my insistence, and I understand the counselor has been trying to convince him he has an addiction to sex, so he found a counselor who has told him what he wants to hear–that he is not addicted to sex, but his sexual energy is “out of control” Whatever, it’s all semantics to me. The point is his behavior has ruined our intimacy, has probably broken up our marriage, and caused an immense amount of pain between the two of us. He says that BDSM is “advanced sex”–I say that is not true. He wants to restore the power in our relationship by tying me up in the the bedroom–because he doesn’t feel he has it anywhere else in his life. No thanks. I told him that I feel like “Real men don’t need to tie women up” men that are comfortable, confident and capable and don’t need to intentionally dominate another person. That is what turns me on. My husband was “hooking up” with married women from the Ashley Madison website (take a peek, there are some very SKANKY women on that website). Of course these people are looking to “get out of a situation” or take care of their own sexual addiction issues. As I have said, a REAL MAN doesn’t have to “do it” with someone else’s spouse and/or tie up some vulnerable person who had sunk so low as to advertise herself on a cheaters website. It has given me a very bad impression of BDSM. It’s not happening with this chick. Not with this guy…

  14. Submissive Says:

    I am a submissive. Always have been. Much like my cousin knew he was gay as a young child, I knew I wanted something different then what I saw in the ‘real’ world.

    I find release when I give up control. I find peace when I’m doing a scene and I’m being humiliated or gagging on a cock. I don’t know why. But I do know there is nothing wrong with me.

    I graduated summa cum laude. I have several degrees. I come from a nice family with no abuse. I explain it to my vanilla friends that they may find dark haired guys attractive. Or tattoos. Or business suits. Or whatever. But I find submissiveness attractive.

    Most of the dominants I know ARE ‘real men’ and sometimes struggle with their need to humiliate, control, or give pain to their submissive even though she wants it because society tells them it’s wrong. Look up Dom drop. It’s real and can be scary for them.

    I am currently in a relationship with a pretty vanilla guy. I had to sit him down and explain what I needed and if he couldn’t give it to me every once in a while we were not going to make it. So he’ll tie me up once a year, spank me when I need it, and he even once told me to ‘taste it’ when he put himself in my mouth. I adore him for it.

    I told him he doesn’t have to like my kinks. He can say no to anything he finds too extreme. But he can NEVER make me feel like I am disgusting or that something is wrong with me because my needs are different from his. I can never feel scared to ask him for something.

    He’s trying but he still slips up. I’m willing to compromise with his vanilla but he must be able to compromise with my mint. He doesn’t have to like it but he has to do it sometimes. I don’t like driving him to the airport during rush hour but I do it every month. He can spank me and tell me why every few months too.

  15. Vixen Says:

    My spouse of 15 years has just told me that he has been cheating on me for years and doesn’t love any of the other women, still loves me, but wants an open marriage. For a few years, his bedroom fantasies have been kinky, and he said he wanted to ‘share me.’ I agreed to these fantasies only in the bedroom. I thought that is what his desires were, just fantasies. They didn’t do it for me, but I desired to be intimate with him, so I entertained them. He has a high stress career and is always told what to do, so I figured he needed a little Dom control to cope. We never had a conversation about his desires. Or mine, which I guess are vanilla. Although I do think had he communicated with me, he might have seen I have some vixen in me, too. So he went outside of our marriage to act out his fantasies, yet, he still doesn’t seem happy. He recently met a married woman on Ashley Madison.com and had a couple of “angry sex” encounters. Her husband found out and informed me. It is a mess. Now we are separating. I hope he will agree to counseling. He said he did not feel this way until 8 years into our marriage when our daughter was about to be born. I wonder why he didn’t just talk to me about his feelings or ask for a divorce then? I would have been crushed, but now 7 years later am just beyond words devastated. I haven’t worked in a year because we moved due to his job and I haven’t found one. So, now I have to move away from him to another state and find a job and with our daughter live in my Mom’s spare room until I can get on my feet while he gets his act together and hopefully finishes up his assignment do he can join us in a year or two. Which means no counseling for all that time. I have stuck by him, and I thought we were friends, as well. Now I have lost my husband and my friend. I am wondering if all of this behavior change could be PTSD, sex addiction, fear of retirement, mid-life crisis, and alcoholism. He said he was sorry that he hurt me with the affairs, but was not sorry he had the affairs. He did finally admit to being an alcoholic. Maybe this whole experience of being discovered by the lover’s husband and telling me will at least get my husband into alcohol treatment. I can’t imagine him having visitation with our daughter during our separation while he is in this state of mind. All he is thinking about is himself. And to think that I have laid awake at night wanting him and he claimed he was too tired. And our little girl wanted to spend time with him and he was too tired. Yet, he had alter-ego. He has always been the most level-headed, soft spoken man. None of this makes sense. I want to help him, but I feel so betrayed and unattractive.

  16. Tony Says:

    Vixen-

    I am so sorry for what you and your daughter are going through. I wanted to wish you strength, peace, blessings, and light.

  17. Powerfully Defenceless Says:

    I was reading these posts and had to drop in. I’m kind of sad and broken feeling right now. I have a wife who is a beautiful lady and best friend. Not the cliché my girls my friend but seriously the one person in the world I can decompress with. I’m away from home a lot due to work but she’s my world. That all said I have been spending all night researching divorce and psychology of dysfunctional relationship sites. We’ve been together 6 years and honestly we always had sexual incompatibility problems but she is such a baddass that I stuck with it and compromised. I have had a lot of power play in my past as well as “vanilla” though I hate that term. It’s all so beautiful saying its one flavor or that really does it injustice like saying it’s a flower or tree. There are so many varieties.
    I don’t need power play all the time nor do I want it. I think there’s a time and a place. I don’t want to beat my wife or have her do what I say. I’d say 90% of the time in day to day life I just defer to her judgment on things cus I love seeing her smile the other 10 I instantly get my way cus she appreciates me giving her the rains most of the time. We don’t have kids though we’ve tried. Stress for another day. Due to trying we have a ton of sex. She’ll try almost anything I want… here’s the rub.
    When we started I was clear on my past. I use to be a man whore. Not literally. Didn’t get paid but I had low esteem and low standards. I was abused as a child. Not sexually just choked out bottles broken on my head tossed down stairs. You know the usual… sorry bad joke. I inappropriately joke a lot, wife does to… We like it… anyway. I was abused like that but I suppose some can’t laugh about it after.
    I was crazy as a teen-early 20’s drink fight and fuck every night. My first few apartments looked like Swiss cheese from all the holes. I’ve never hit a woman though I have remodeled a couple walls next to them under extreme provocation. I met a Dom in my early 20’s and that was my first adventure into the world of kink. She was kind and cruel. Heartless and all encompassingly caring. Readers digest she, over time, broke me down to the point I snapped and regressed to that scared little kid in a corner with the 300 lb gorilla cracking his bones over and over. But shed bring me back. And did that over and over. One day I didn’t cry. Another I didn’t scream. Another I didn’t flinch and magically I lost my fear. I have not once even had to fight back rage since then. See my rage was really fear of being powerless. I thought power was either given or taken with no in-between. Now I know true power is restraint courage and conviction. The man who takes 5 to the gut but still defends his family and friends ignoring the pain, not the shooter. My dad had no power, just fear dumped onto a little defenseless child and his mother. My Dom gave me this gift and set me free.
    I went back to vanill…. No I’ll just call um strait relationships. Like strait or kinked not the other way… stupid words have too many pointless meanings…. Anyway… relationships life rinse repeat, found a girl broken and scared. Fast forward my relationship with my Dom roles switched she was fixed set her free. I’m still friends with my Dom and sub by the way. Were all doing awesome in life kicking ass and taking money =b confidence and a lack of fear is awesome. So all that said I wouldn’t have married any of them. We just weren’t compatible in other ways. So back to the now.
    My wife has been with 3 other people and has an amazing family. At first she would try anything but isn’t into kink at all. In fact she loves sex but only quickies. Takes her maybe five min tops to get off then she’s done. She’ll let me finish but it’s all me at that point. I have skill let me tell you… and I’m not lying and to prove it, not hung. No issues with it. Can make any girl squirt with 2 fingers and my voice, bam! But one she’s done. She can have more but they hurt her 3 or 4 and she’s hating life. She just seizes up to hard when it happens. Me I’m an all-night man. Quickies are fun but I love foreplay. She is getting better but honestly doesn’t see the point. Her hitting on me is turning and saying we should fuck. All the romance is for me to. She doesn’t get it but trys? Ish? I like dirty talk, ya, fuck my daddy pump that hot cum in mama. She trys that to but basically I need to tell her what to say most of the time and she always feels and sounds awkward.
    The biggest thing, the bdsm thing. We use to try. Couple times she started crying. I’d stop but she’d say keep goin, get what you need. Sometimes I was like fuck this, not out loud, and tried to cool her down. She was broken for days thinking she failed. Couple times I was like ok I got this and pushed her through it. No dice either. She basically said you’re an asshole and locked herself in the bathroom to cry… I don’t like feeling like I actually raped my wife. I domdroped hard a lot when we had sessions. I eventually stopped trying. I want her to smile. She doesn’t like blowjobs, or even me going down on her. All she wants is missionary or doggy quickies constantly. 2x a day on average. Sometimes more sometimes less.
    We fought a lot at first which for us is calmly talking, we don’t yell. And almost split but settled on me going slow and her having time to grow into it but she just instantly gives up and makes me feel it’s hurting her. Well that’s supposed to happen but not that way, a bad way. This made me stop trying to push her and stop trying. But we stayed cus were as close to sole mates as I’ve ever even met in a female anywhere. The best friend ever out of everyone. But 6 years later our sex is stagnant. I have trouble keeping it up sometimes and mostly just get her off then just tell her I’m tired and we stop. Its starting to distance us. I don’t even know how to talk about it anymore cus we have over and over and she always just says sorry I’ll try harder and nothing happiness…. I don’t know what to do anymore. I can’t see it as evil or an addiction. It saved my life and I have friends that have entire play rooms dedicated to role play that have wonderful kids and happy compromising lives. To me it’s a physical statement of love saying I want to control every aspect of you you beautiful person as you cry and cum in my arms. Or I want to give myself to you cus you are the one I chose to control my everything.
    O btw I’m a switch. She’s not dominant either and thinks its awkward. We talk about everything but I just don’t know what to do anymore. I don’t think I can meet anyone like her again… but I know on this road I might eventually cheat and I hate cheaters. Or I’ll just continue to die inside. Which I feel like I’m doing. Shriveling into slow isolation cus I can’t express myself the way I need to to the only person I care to express myself to.
    I don’t know what advice I’m asking for by putting this out into the aether. I just can’t lose her but I can’t stay this course and talking about everything works for everything except this even on pain of separation. She just makes me think she’ll try then does but doesn’t cus her hearts not in it. No matter how much she wants it to be.
    I can walk from anything but I can’t walk from her… or myself…

  18. Curiously peaking (Mary) Says:

    Powerfully Defenceless:
    You have a lot of courage to come here. It is obvious you are hurting.
    Remember that strength comes from knowing who you are. It is terrifying to think of leaving someone you have been with for so long… But only you know if you should stay or go.

    I have interests in kink- but many of your responses above have made me ponder a lot. No one teaches you that people change and when you marry- that person may change too. It is scary to think of leaving the one you are with because you may never find the one that matches you sexually, mentally, and relationship wise.

    It’s a tough world out there.
    Remember that love starts with yourself.

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    Weblogs or blogs as they are known are here to stay.

  20. simon Says:

    Im so glad I came across this web page. My wife and I are going through exactly the same issues.
    We have two children so there is no way we are splitting and so we have to make the best of it together.
    I can only echo the stories of those here.
    I am a very sexually active dominant man, who loves his wife fiercely. However, she is into just vannila sex and this just doesnt do it for me.

    We have been round the houses and we are both totally happy we who we are. But we both want totally different things from sex. There is no common ground. We both feel rejected emotionaly but know with our minds the other loves us dearly.

    It is really hard not to let resentment leak out to the rest of the relationship. Sometimes i am so frustrated I feel like I hate her, but I dont really

    We have crappy sex about 4 times a year.

    I have no choice but to find it elsewhere which is actually unsatisfying and as a result makes you feel bad and even more resentful. I want a loving warm relationship through bdsm and she doesnt.

    We will continue in this mediocre state of affairs for the sake of the boys and because we both love each other in every other apsect.

    If you can get out without aftermath of children then anyone reading this, then do. Dont let it go on and get trapped. Sometimes it feels like your whole life is wasted.

  21. Kevin Millsap Says:

    Oklahoma has a law and that was way before marriage equality for same sex marriages
    are, for the way it’s supposed to do the Christian thing and repeal these consensual sex laws and our minds.
    As if puberty isn’t rough enough, back in good ‘ol NC, it
    is considered to have sex on Sunday, Wednesday
    and Friday the holy trinity of the Napoleonic wars.

    New measures against child prostitution are also expected on rape laws, anyone
    found guilty of being legislated, but.

  22. jennie Says:

    Thankyou so much to Sara & Nancy. I was going insane with grief due to my husband coming out as ‘a dom’ recently while I was working away from home (saving his ass). He never once in 12 years let on…but was so emotionally distant and cold that I thought it was me. I tried everything, took care of myself, perfect home worked full time you name it. I found your comments have saved me. I am feeling ‘normal’ and although ‘vanilla’ doesn’t define me by any means it is who I am. I can’t believe a few weeks ago that I would even know these terms! My husband wants to stay friends… He tells me about his sub …….on my return home only weeks after being told, his room is kitted out. I’ve said, I can love you as a friend an advisor because I love you but can’t accept women in my house! I can’t believe my life has come to this…my in-laws who I adore are devastated =they just think we ‘grew apart’ ohh I wish I could tell them.
    Anyway, this page has helped me beyond words…I was toying with the idea of throwing my self at him acting sub forever…now realise thanks to nancy that I would feel abused and that I crave love and affection from with someone who I can trust. Thank you. A note for some in hiding. Don’t have your cake and eat it..tell as early as possible or you live a lie and waste anothers life…The pain is immense, my heart literally feels broken. Jen

  23. Lady Di Says:

    My life has been one of satisfying serial relationships that last 2-3 years then burn out. I actually like this because I get to feel fully loved and open up to someone’s life. 7 years ago I met a man that really did it for me physically and intellectually. However he introduced me to his BDSM desires and held them up as a higher standard than what I view as vivid sexual and deep personal connections. 4 years ago we married. Even before we married he started to come out as unsatisfied and lacked interest in satisfying me. I worked with him to share his drive towards incorporating BDSM into our lives. It did not work out as no matter what I tried he always seems to go “somewhere else” during the scenes and also with my “fun and lovingly playful” sex which truly rocks my world. As time passes we are drifting further apart. I feel threatened and physically abandoned by his sexual preferences, he dismisses my needs and yet feels guilty about it. OK, we are in our early 60′s and maybe should just suck up our losses and try for some peace in the relationship. He is getting bored with his life, I am emotionally disconnecting. I try to speak with him about this but he gets angry, defensive and even more secretive and distant. Its only a matter of time til I find a lover that fulfills my personal needs for that sexual playful connection. Cannot see that he wont do the same. wish he would just man up and agree to divorce. BDSM and non-BDSM people who marry suffer so much. Life is full of lessons, glad I am learning this one while I am still beautiful and vital. Wish I were not writing this but honesty and moving forward in life is essential to who I am. Thanks for all the sharing and obviously deep insights from both sides.

  24. Jessexyum Says:

    Why do you stay. You deserve too be with someone confident and comfortable with.

  25. jafra Says:

    The Vi – Salus is not in the run ofpublicity like the other health products that excites the people and ready togo, but that die away in few weeks because they are physically very difficult tokeep up.

    Food being part of the physiologic needs of people should be taken with some sort
    of discipline. Media Highlights: Blair on “The Big Idea – The American Dream” with Ivanka Trump:.

  26. Brad Says:

    Seeing a lot of these comments simply makes me nauseous. What’s wrong with you people? First of all, causing pain to someone is NOT love in any respect. Period. I don’t care which way you twist it. If someone does not want to participate in this sickness they do not have to! Secondly, if you are only with someone for the sex, your relationship was doomed to begin with. Sex might be integral in a relationship but, it is not all important. If you think so, you’re doomed to failure. If you love someone, you should be ‘making love’, not just having sex all the time. It’s not ‘vanilla’, it’s natural. If you’re not satisfied with normal sex, why not? What have you been feeding your mind? Do you like hurting people? Sounds like you have serious problems. Do you like receiving pain, being hurt? Sounds like you have serious problems. If you want to break up with someone because, they will or will not participate in BDSM for you, you don’t deserve a relationship because, you are selfish. A relationship should be based on LOVE. A man who wants to be dominated is not a man. Why would you have these desires? better take a good, hard look at yourself, people. And get counseling. If someone insists you do something for them or they are going to go elsewhere for it, let em’ pack their bags and get out for good. You deserve someone loyal, not someone sick. And, in this case it is a sickness. If you both agree to a little kink in the bedroom, then go for it. But, if it is NOT mutual, just deal with it! If you can’t, don’t get into a relationship. Talk it through BEFORE you get into a relationship. I mean a real one. You people who cheat because, you feel you have a right to it because, your significant other won’t be part of your twisted desires, aren’t worthy of love. You betray your spouse because, you’d rather have a physical desire fulfilled. You have no idea what love is. That’s your fault. You broke the trust. If you’re unhappy, too damn bad. Go cry about it. for you other husbands/wives who have to deal with spouses/significant others who want to drag you into their world? Run like hell! They’ll just keep pressuring you until you give in and hate yourself, or they’ll cheat on you proving they were scum to begin with. If you cheat on your spouse, that’s exactly what you are. As society has advanced, it’s morals have decreased. Sex is advertised everywhere. It just gets worse and worse.

    Let me say this one more time for those who will seemingly have missed it…..

    If you BOTH agree and enjoy things in the bedroom……..fine!

    If you don’t, STOP trying to force it on your mate! If you love your mate, LOVE your mate. And, you don’t need to have religion to have morals, ethics and plain, human decency.

  27. Growbag Says:

    Oh my lord….these replies from inhibited females and beta Brad are just shocking.
    Brad, you are a pathetic, idealizing fool. Nothing stays static in life, and least of all relationships. Men love surprise especially in the bedroom. Unfortunately most women stop that after a few months of sex and especially after marriage and kids. Sorry ladies, but you just aint that inclined except for a precious few individuals at the edge of a very narrow bell curve.
    If your partner has been emotionally supportive throughout your relationship but YOU refuse to connect to his bedroom desires then you own the problem. It’s because feminism has told you that you dont have to do anything you dont want that you develop this sense of superiority, pomposity even.
    You have no clue how painful it is for an average guy to listen to his wife’s emotional crap day after day – yet our feminist ridden culture tells men if we don’t we aren’t worthy of a relationship. No wonder most of us don’t want to be married.
    How dare most of you claim superiority by suggesting that being grossly unhappy in the bedroom isnt a valid reason to leave a relationship? That is what you imply.
    It’s time you woke up and recognized that the single most important thing to a guy is sex. If you want a long lasting relationship, then get over yourselves and go along with your man. Work out a compromise where at least you indulge him now and again, and stop being so precious and feeling victimized….jeez

  28. Doug Says:

    My fiancee and I have been together for 12 years and I have helped her through college and life. I am 25 years older and realize that I was acting as a parent and “molding: her into what I wanted.

    In January I started in an Adult Children of Alcoholism group which has helped tremendously. We both grew up in violent homes with neglectful parents. This group along with therapy has opened me up emotionally. I now can feel rather than blocking every emotion.

    She started into BDSM, with my knowledge, in September and I began 4 months of emotional hell. Since then I have experienced many devastating emotional episodes, triggered by something she did, said, or didn’t do. Through therapy I have learned that I had some traumatic experiences in childhood that I have blocked. My sister and I do not remember very much of our childhoods.

    I love her more than is possible to express and she feels that way towards me, but she says she needs to be submissive. Like others on here, I cannot comprehend how someone can need to be abused. We have also tried to incorporate some of the “lite” BDSM into our sex lives but she says she can feel that I am not into it. I can’t be into harming someone I love. Just as I can’t understand why my father beat and raped my mother or why she stayed even after I was married.

    The BDSM is invading our life. Thanks to stay true to you for saying that “this stuff seeps into other areas of your life.” It is true. She doesn’t even know his last name, but he has told her she is not allowed to have an orgasm unless I cause it, which has never happened. Because he is a Dom he says he can’t use a condom, so now I use a condom for my peace of mind.

    As I have learned to let go of the Adult Child behaviors, my willingness to accept anything so she doesn’t leave me is fading. I am terrified of being alone and losing her, but I know I have lost her already.

    We are also in couple’s therapy and I have a psychiatrist and therapist. The pain of losing her and my relationship is terrible, but with the added burden of my past exploding at any moment, it is all just too much. It is ironic that with her and me coming from very similar backgrounds that we ended up falling on opposite sides of the BDSM line.

    I hate BDSM and wish it fell off the planet, but it is here. I am so hurt, angry, and sad but I survived my childhood I will survive this too.

  29. Bonero Says:

    I agree with Growbag 110%. I have a very mild kink where I want to be restrained and masturbated while I’m naked and she’s dressed up and wearing lots of lip gloss. That’s it. She already dresses up and wears lots of lipgloss whenever she goes out, but won’t indulge my fantasy.

    When I opened up and told her about it..she acted like she would do it. After all, it’s not that big an effort for her I would think.

    But years have gone by and I’ve brought it up several times before I finally gave up. My take is that I spend and have spent inordinate amount time doing things for her that I hate to do but I put up with because I love her – including going to crappy vacation spots, horrible jazz concerts, listening to her problems about work. But this small indulgence I ask for somehow is too much. I guess I can’t help but feel a bit resentful.

  30. Bobbi Says:

    My husband and I have been together for nearly 8 years. He is very into the BDSM lifestyle and I have absolutely no desire to. It has caused alot of problems between us. I was sexually traumatized as a child, being molested at 10 and raped at 16 and 25. He wants me to be the dom saying that it will benefit me and help me heal but what I cannot get him to understand is that pushing me to do this is hurting more than it is helping.I have no desire in hurting someone I love whether he wants me to or not. I have caught him looking at disgusting porn but I do not think that he would actually cheat on me. He has threatened it but I dont think he will go there. I have actually considered paying for a professional dom to satisfy his needs but I hate the thought of another woman turning my husband on. I have researched this lifestyle trying to put forth an effort and I literally have panic attacks just thinking about it. I feel like there is a sense of perversion about the things he wants me to do ( like strap ons etc ) He gets so mad at me saying I am not giving it a chance and how can I when everything in me is repulsed by this lifestyle. I have been clean and sober for over 6 years because I had to choose between it and my marriage but yet he cannot do the same when it comes to this lifestyle. He would choose BDSM over me any day of the week. I love him and we have been through so much together but how can I get him to listen that I DO NOT want to participate in this?

  31. Sheisawesome Says:

    I cannot tell you how amazing it is to know there are other people dealing with the same issues as I am. I mean yes…I know after being married 22 years, having given up a truly fulfilling career to raise our 2 children and powering thru the ups and downs of “life” that one is NEVER the only one going thru anything or everything. I too am in a situation where my husband is wanting to “really” get into the BDSM Dom/Sub lifestyle. I can say with 100 % conviction that our sex life has run the gamut from plain “vanilla” sex to 3 somes both MFM & FMF to light BDSM to mind blowing totally romantic like in a romance novel 2 bodies becoming one intwined in the sweet smell of all over combined sex juices and sweat and lovemaking. Now here we are 23 years later and I’m completely expierencing bi polar type emotions about allowing my husband to bring a female sub into our relationship. Like I mentioned before, we have dabbled in the Dom/sub role with me as his sub….to an extent. We are now at a place where we communicate openly about our sexual needs and feelings, this after I, like another person posted…found out he had been having a phone relationship with a Dom for over a year without my knowledge. When I first discovered what he had been doing I ran thru all the emotions from angry to sad to depressed to resentful and back around again a few times over. To say the least, we worked thru that issue and with mutual agreement to keep open and honest communication about each of our sexual desires and needs. Fast forward 3 years…I unfortunantly found out that after a long period of keeping his word…yep…he did it again, not once more but twice more. I didn’t understand…I made it very clear that I was willing to push my boundaries in that area in exchange for HONESTY from him about if it was enought (what I was willing to do) and if he had any other ideas on how we could “meet in the middle” and both of us be satisfied that he was getting some of what he desired and I wasn’t compromising entirely and losing who I was and what I needed. I guess the advice I’m looking for is this: from the very start of our relationship 24 years ago I have always been open and willing to try new things, push my sexual boundaries to fulfill his needs (some things I found I really liked and still do to this day because it fulfills me as well) and I have time and time again forgiven his deception/cheating and put myself out there over and over to assure him that I am willing to discuss and entertain any ideas that will bring us to a place where he dosent feel the need to do things outside our marriage. A week ago he met a few business associates for dinner and one of the men’s cousins (26 y/o female) happened to be bar tending at the Resturant. They were introduced and a few comments were exchanged between the two that led my husband to catch her alone and discuss further with her the concept of Dom/Sub and BDSM. He got her phone number and on his way home called her and they discussed at length his desire to find a sub and her desire to replace her recently past Dom. He explained to,her that our (his & I’s) relationship was very important and that he would do nothing to jeopardize it so the relationship,would have to include me. She was very receptive to having “us” as a set with him the dominant and me just a part of the scene as I am neither a sub nor a Dom and Imhave no desire to be either(tried it…not a fan). We all met at a bar the other night to get to know each other and see if we were all ok with moving forward, nothing really sexual happened that night aside from some light touching between her and I at his request and a little question answer stuff between the two,of them…Dom/sub style. Since then, we (he & I) have been discussing different sceneries of what would happen between the 3 of us should we get together sexually. I know he has spoken to her and exchanged texts with her almost daily and at great lengths of time. One minute I’m all on board with this because he has assured me that nothing will happen without me present and that he dosent have the desire to have a sub without me involved. The next minute I’m reading online about how the sub/Dom relationship requires intimacy and him being available to her and for her to avoid “sub drop” and that a good Dom is both firm and pushes boundaries yet comforting and loving after a “scene”. Reading all that flips my opinion about the possibility that he could have a sub that is not me and I still be the focus and the soul recipient of his love and affection?! Am I being a fool to think this is possible? I want him to be happy and sexually fulfilled but absolutely NOT at the expense of my relationship with him. She says she broke it off with her past Dom because he wanted a mix of vanilla sex with BDSM and she dosent want a relationship…..isn’t a Dom/Sub a RELATIONSHIP? I’m so torn and confused, I do enjoy watching him dominate another woman but I do NOT wish to watch him show her romantic or deep feelings…that has to be just for me or what is it I have?

  32. ALittleFrustrated Says:

    I got through about half of these comments before I decided I had to say something.

    First of all, you have to decide whether you love your man enough to possibly share. You both have needs, and ignoring those needs can be detrimental to your relationship and your health. I recommend following Dom’s advice. I know several couples/play partners who have a loving marriage, but have a great bdsm relationship with another person as well, with full knowledge and consent from the marriage partners. The key is communication (as any bdsm community or relationship advice will tell you, it’s all about communication). Bdsm can also be platonic BTW, for your information. Discuss your options with your significant other.

    Second of all, most of these posters have no idea what bdsm is really about. It’s certainly not for everyone, it will appeal to some people and not others, simple as that. A healthy bdsm relationship is nothing like abuse. It involves lots of conversation, negotiation, trial and error, and commitment. Just like a normal relationship but with different dynamics. And always consensual.

    People in the bdsm lifestyle have needs that can’t be met through “normal” means. This doesn’t make them sick or unreasonable. Bdsm is more about headspace than anything, to provide oneself with a healthy outlet for certain feelings, desires, cravings, etc that the participants need to be mentally (and therefore physically) well. Those who make it a lifestyle would tell you they’ve grown as a person and become happier than they could have been otherwise. Just like sexuality it’s not a thing you can turn on and off at will.

    Keep in mind I’m talking about healthy bdsm relationships.

    If you can’t find a compromise with your partner, then it would be best for both of you to go your own ways. It will be healthier in the long run. On the other hand, if you find a compromise you could find your lives greatly enhanced with proper handling.

    But first, do your research into your options, and try to understand where he’s coming from. Not to participate necessarily, but rather do you can have an informed opinion on what your partner needs. If you’re sure he’s the one, then you can find a way to make it work.

  33. ALittleFrustrated Says:

    To expand what I was saying, your partner should never pressure you into acts you don’t want. It’s all about consent. If you don’t want to be involved with bdsm then that’s your choice – as I said previously it’s not something you can turn on and off. Just be aware it’s the same thing for your partner. Most likely their interest or need for a bdsm relationship (platonic or sexual) is something they wish they could set aside for the sake of your romantic relationship.

    It’s a bit like a straight/gay couple with a potentially less tragic ending, if you want to think about it that way. Just remember that disinterest or interest are aspects of you and your partner, not some crazy, scary addiction or disease that can be treated with meds or therapy, or simply put aside. They’re personality traits you will have to deal with if you two love each other enough to try and work it out.

    There are some great resources in this group, from both perspectives (vanilla partner and kinkster). Hopefully it will help the people here who are having troubles make their decisions.

    https://fetlife.com/groups/2790

  34. ALittleFrustrated Says:

    I guess what I’m trying to get across is please don’t judge a book by its cover. Bdsm is not a bad thing, and neither is vanilla. They’re just very different expressions of personality. I see a lot of hate floating around because of bad experiences. It’s not out to ruin your life.

    It sucks, I know. Having a disconnect with the one you love is terrible. But please don’t project that feeling of hatred on an entire group of people and ideals.

    Talk with your partner. Be open, don’t hide things. This goes for both people. Cheating, lying, sneaking around is never acceptable behaviour, no matter what the source is.

  35. CuriousNow Says:

    BDSM has different levels/degrees. Sounds like your guy really isn’t into hard core (or sadist acts). But if he IS a dom, then he is asking you for your trust. That’s what it is all about. Do you trust him Not to harm you? These relationships take an open and honest relationship and it sounds like you two don’t necessarily have that. Most BDSM relationships discuss the ‘limits’, and have safe words so when he crosses a line, you safe word, he stops. No questions asked and no reprecussions. It seems that many people are hung up on some kind of stigmatization in regards to sex. What goes on in your bedroom is between you and your partner and whatever you two do is your business; vanilla or all out kink. But I am of the mind that if you can’t trust your significant other in the bedroom to pleasure you in all kinds of ways then you can’t possibly be trusting of him in other ways either. Relationships are built on trust and he’s begging for your trust. Try it. Give it to him and see where it goes. Don’t be afraid that you might actually like it. Good luck either way.

  36. subgirl Says:

    I am a submissive woman and I have a wonderful vanill-ish husband who plays along with me. We communicate our needs to one another. Anyone who tells you this is obly about humiliation and degredation and weak women getting walked on like door mats has watched too much porn. Absolutely be true to yourself. I could not agree mote with that statement.

    BUT if you’re going to agree to get involved with a kinky partner then please, for the love of god, go learn something about it. There are many books on the aubjext.

    Do not ever take another person’s fantasies and make them your own. If you are open to exploring, then try to discover your own fantasies, likes and dislikes, and then communicate them. And any Dom worth a squat will want you to learn, on your own, from many sources.

    The lifestyle can actually make a relationship very close and intimate if you learn about it, work it like a journey and open up communication with your partner. You do not ever have to be into pain or bondage to be involved in the lifestyle.

    And I am anything but a mindless door mat.

  37. subgirl Says:

    please forgive my typos… I am on a cell phone :)


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