The Joys of Rough Sex

Daddy and I have been writing each other all day about my desire for him to force me to submit, how I crave rougher, and I am full of bravado as 5 o’clock nears. But once I hear the garage door open and the rumble of his car in the garage, I am suddenly scared, nervous. And when he walks in with those smoldering eyes that tells me he has been working up a head of sexual steam all day, I think I actually gulp.

“Come here,” he says.

I walk toward him, and his hand claps onto my shoulder and he pushes me hard down onto my knees so forcefully that it makes me lose my balance a bit. Zing. I am instantly turned on just by that little bit of force, that one moment of being overpowered.

After I suck his cock, he pulls me to my feet, and I move a little wobbly into the kitchen to make dinner. As I cook, he begins unwinding the rope in the living room, looking over to me with a small smile that looks positively ruthless to me, and gives me a little shiver of fear, and a big wave of anticipation.

Our attempts at small talk are interspersed with small bursts of stray laughter from me.

“Is someone nervous?” he asks.

“Someone is very nervous,” I answer.

“You should be,” he says.

After we eat, he begins binding my breasts in a harness.

It is such a singular thing, to stand mostly naked, while he puts all that focus on me, and winds the rope around me in this slow hypnotic rhythm. It settles me completely into my body and my sexual self, while at the same time making it explicit that my body is his.

“Now,” he says. “Your spanking.”

He pulls me to the couch and pulls me over his lap, none too gently. My squeezed tight breasts are pressed painfully into the couch, and while I am trying to get comfortable he smacks my ass hard, very hard. Way harder than usual. I don’t know why it shocks me, how much it hurts. This is what I wanted, right?

It seems not at all what I want when the blows land. I am flinching, and moaning, trying to scramble away. But he shoves my head down onto the couch, holds me still, spanks me brutally until I am in tears. I think, how stupid am I, to invite such a abuse. I don’t like this!  But only moments after the last spank, my body calms, and I am swept by the sweetest surrendered feeling to his power over me.

With my ass still burning hot, he tells me to lie still on his lap and relax. I am only too happy to obey, still face down on the couch. He reaches for the lube and starts stroking my bottom hole. This is when he most truly becomes Daddy to me, when he penetrates me there, gently probing, opening me to his fingers while I lie helpless across his lap. My mind is so convinced only a Daddy could be allowed to do that, or would want to do that, would be so careful gentle and yet so insistent. It is hard to lie still for it, accept the intensity of his fingers pounding into my ass, the too-much-ness of it. I want to squirm because it feels like an invasion, a wrongness, and it hurts.

But oh my god the pleasure that comes as I allow that pain, and submit to that piercing pressure. I have a mental image of those expanding circles that artists draw in the ocean to show the traveling of a sonar waves. I feel round shafts of the most deeply satisfying pleasure pulsing through me.

But ass penetration is not just physical pleasure, it rivets my mind as well as my body, my mind literally cannot move any more than my body can, and my mind craves more even when my body is saying enough, I can’t take more. Then he slides another finger in, and I feel myself keep opening, allowing, almost swooning, fuck yes. And I know, I KNOW this is what Daddy love feels like, to be so essentially and personally taken and invaded and penetrated to the core.

So he has prepared me, and stretched me, and even though I feel so incredibly open, he tells me I am tight, and he is going to put a plug in. I lie still and breathless as he pushes the fat, clear silicone plug into my throbbing behind. It feels more hard and painful and cold than his fingers, but satisfying still, to be on the edge of what I can stand, to feel myself stretched and full. And his fingers go in my pussy, oh I am full everywhere, I feel ecstasy building, I am dissolving …

And then a dark pain, deep in my ass, BAD pain, his fingers pounding into my pussy are pushing the plug too far in, I turn my head in alarm, start yelling, “Ow, ow, ow!” my hand shoving at him to stop. The TV is on, he cannot hear me at first. It is getting worse, I am in a panic, kicking my feet, yelling louder, when he finally stops. “It hurts!  You’re hurting me!”

He quickly discovers that the plug has ENTIRELY disappeared inside me, round handle and all have gone too far up my ass. From ecstasy to horror in ten seconds. True horror. I am scared so scared, I fear I have to go to the emergency room to get it taken out, I will become a joke, the humiliation will be unbearable.

But Daddy keeps his head, and calmly works his finger in after it and plucks it out. He seems to take it in stride.

I do not take it in stride, I am so upset by this turn, mortified by it.  My butthole hurts bad, I have no clue if it is seriously damaged (it isn’t), and I am pretty well hysterical, half laughing half crying.  But he is saying shhhhh, pulling me onto his lap, comforting me.

But I am done, and I am sure that my solicitous husband will stop now, release me from sexual obligation for the evening, allow me to recover my composure. But this is not my husband, this is my Daddy, and what Daddy wants, Daddy takes. And when I say I am done with anal training, I give up, he will not hear of it.

“We are not giving up, baby girl,” he says. Already he is pushing me back over his lap and sliding his fingers back into my pussy. I have the uncanny feeling that it doesn’t matter what I feel, literally does not matter, my body does not belong to me, and he is going to finish what he started. And yes I am still excited after all, and his fingers keep sliding in and out of me, stirring me, and the orgasm comes fast, and then another … And then he tells me to turn over onto my back and he fucks me until his own orgasm makes him groan loud. He will later tell me that it was the fuck of his life.

Afterward he cleans between my legs with the towel, that tender Daddy task that makes me so feel like a girl being taken care of, makes me know I can trust him. He lies over me, sucks on my pushed out titties, then, his face charged and wild like I have never seen, he grabs the front of the breast harness, and lifts the top of my body, shaking me with growls of ownership. I feel like a rag doll, helpless in the grip of his powerful hand, his powerful possessive love. Being shaken like that pushes me further in a submissive trance, I feel my head fall back in the stunned peace of subspace.

Finally, Daddy pulls me to my feet so he can unwrap the ropes. It is a long luxurious process, he cradles me close, and the feel of rope sliding across my body as well as his tender hands keeps me in that space for a long, suspended while …

I was not wrong about more force bringing me more satisfaction, more surrender.  I could have never imagined being so close to someone, so handled inside and out.  I feel consumed by him, swallowed up into him.  I had thought I was throwing myself into the D/s dynamic, did not realize how completely I would be throwing myself into him.

Who is he, this dominant Daddy of mine?  I have only barely met him. He does not even know this unfolding version of himself. I am unfamiliar with myself too, we are changing each other, becoming new people with each other. I feel so raw as he unwraps me, so at the mercy of the unknown him and the ever changing us. And so fucking in awe of how he loves me.

The Nitty Gritty Part Two

After our little D/s crisis of the other night, where I felt foolish for wanting to ask for anal training, and shut myself down, I keep wanting to ask Daddy, what are we DOING?  I cannot wait for him to get home to have a real conversation, and it is easier for me to write my thoughts anyway, so I email him again:

We’ve had many talks about how D/s feels to you and me, and how and why it excites each of us.  But I don’t think we’ve talked about how we want the process to unfold, what point we want to get to, what exactly we are trying to accomplish with this kind of relationship.  I know right now we’re in discovery mode, and still trying to figure those things out.  But it seems to me that we can’t get past the bumps in the road – like what happens if I am not in the mood to submit – without a mutual agreement on what we are DOING.    

On the surface, we have a basic agreement that I will do whatever you tell me sexually, and you have the right to my body, and so forth.  This agreement has infused incredible heat into our sex life.  And it seems to me that you look at the BDSM type things we’ve been exploring as a menu of options that you may choose from depending on what sounds pleasurable to you at the moment.  That is, of course, as it should be; the submissive is there to serve at the pleasure of the dominant.  

But there is a larger framework in D/s, at least for me.  A framework that I believe requires deeper responsibilities to each other than just the delivery of pleasure or sexual excitement.  I got tangled up in my ideas on anal training the other night.  But it’s not just because “Oh I like it in the ass.”  You talk about butt plugs as if they are part of whatever menu of pleasure you feel like indulging in, when I have been looking at it as something different, something more like the holy grail of submission.  You have been looking at it as something that is “hot” and I have been looking at it as a spiritual requirement.  

I told you I have been reading the book, The Surrender by Toni Bentley, that erotic memoir about anal sex.  I picked it up looking for clues as to why whenever you put a finger, or anything else, in my behind it has such a powerful effect on me.  Maybe if I send you a few snippets, it will help you understand why I made such a stupid deal out of those stupid plugs the other night.

“Bliss, I learned from being sodomized, is an experience of eternity in a moment of real time.  Sodomy is the ultimate sexual act of trust.  I mean you could really get hurt – if you resist.  But pushing past that fear, by passing through it, literally, ah the joy that lies on the other side of convention.  The peace that is past the pain.  Going past the pain is key.  Once absorbed, it is neutralized and allows for transformation.  Pleasure alone is mere temporary indulgence, a subtle distraction, an anesthetization while on the path to something higher, deeper, lower…

“Anal sex is about cooperation.  One is in charge, the other obedient.  Entirely in charge, entirely obedient.  You can’t half-ass butt-fuck… His cock pierces my yang – my desire to know, control, understand, and analyze – and forces my yin – my openness, my vulnerability – to the surface…  As a liberated woman, it is the only way I can get there.  Turned over, ass in the air, I have little choice but to succumb and lose my head.  This is how I can have an experience my feminist intellect would never allow… Emancipation through the back door would never be, for any rational woman, a choice.  It can only happen as a gift.  A surprise.

“I am, you see, a woman who has been in search of surrender my whole life – to find something, someone, to whom I could subsume my ego, my will, my miserable mortality… And then he found me, the man who demanded my submission… If you can let a man ass-fuck you – and only the truly sensitive lover should have that privilege – you will learn to trust not only him but yourself, totally out of control.  And beyond control lies God.  It is through this physical surrender, this forbidden pathway, that I have found myself, my voice, my spirit, my courage.  This is the truth about the beauty of submission.  The power in submission.  It is God’s supreme irony.  Enter the exit; paradise awaits.”

I send those words to Daddy.  I want him to understand the larger context for me.  How I feel like the health of my soul depends on cultivating real dominance and submission between us.  This time his reply is not long in coming:

Oh, wow, lightbulb moment, .. “What are we DOING?”  I thought you were asking that in the rhetorical sense, the bewildered/panicked/relationship-at-stake sense, .. I didn’t realize your question was literal, .. What, indeed, are we doing, in the larger sense?  And, of course, you’ve asked exactly the right question (you always do), .. I’ll admit that I’ve approached our D/s dynamic in a haphazard way, without any end in mind, .. some light reading, a one-page ‘contract’, and off we went, .. Don’t get me wrong, these first few weeks have been incredibly gratifying, .. OMG, the pleasure you’ve given me, .. so many ‘best ever’ moments.  It’s clear now, though, that I have to consider your ‘larger sense’ question.  I hadn’t thought of BDSM (and anal play in particular) as a spiritual pathway. I’ve viewed our evolving D/s dynamic as a way to reveal my truest nature, free myself, .. and yes, “get my rocks off” by having you submit to my every sexual whim , .. It’s so appealing on a raw, physical, visceral level, that masculine-me hadn’t considered the spiritual possibilities.  My mind association has Tantra in that spiritual space and BDSM a purely physical/mental experience.  I hadn’t considered that it was possible to “know God by being fucked in the ass.” .. :))).  You’re right, I had thought of anal sex as a ‘menu item’, but I get where you’re coming from now, .. it can apparently be so much more.

So, what are we doing? .. In my view, stepping back, it involves words/phrases like: ‘pursuing our truest selves’ or ‘pursuing “oneness” with each other’ or even ‘pursuing God’ .. You asked,“What happens if I’m not in the mood to submit, then what?  Will you force me?” .. I am finding that societal restraints are fading as time passes, so the answer is a simple, ‘I will force you to submit’ (Oh, just typing that thrills me), and I don’t know whether you’ve noticed or not, but I feel that I’ve been more and more assertive in that way as our dynamic unfolds, as my truest self is revealed, .. You asked, “What did I mean the other night when I said that I need to be your Daddy?” .. Oh, baby girl, it’s my highest calling, my truest purpose, .. the thought, ironically, makes my heart soar and my cock stiff, .. taking care of you, holding you, cherishing you, loving you more than life itself, .. the bondage, the discipline, your submission, your surrender, .. it all resonates so perfectly well as good and right and even necessary down to my very core.  I don’t know that I can explain it any better than that.

As I read Daddy’s words, I have to squeeze my thighs together to ease the throbbing in my pussy.

He has just rescued me from the terrible suspicion I had the day before that I’d been trapped into being secretly in control, able to manipulate him with my feelings.  And I had noticed that he’s been more willing to impose his will on me in a physical way. I’d also noticed how much it helps me snap out of whatever mental snafu I have gotten myself into.  Daddy manhandling me, pushing and pulling me over his lap the night before, despite my reluctance, was the one peaceful moment I had that evening.

I believe David Deida is right in that the motive of force matters, whether it is motivated by love or not, and that there is a difference between rape and ravishment, though they may look the same on the outside.  And Deida is right too in that anyone with a feminine essence longs to be ravished.  The rougher he is with me the more I feel…  well, the more I feel everything.  More passionately desired and more inside my body and inside of life, and more free from my mind, more surrendered and more peaceful and more right.

I am more and more convinced that BDSM is a kind of secret code to the subconscious, or even spirit itself, a symbolic language that unlocks very deep life and love things.  And oh, I can’t wait for Daddy to get home…

The Nitty Gritty of Power Exchange

So Daddy goes off to work this morning and I send him my thoughts about our little D/s moment of crisis from last night, and my epiphany on how I want to be more forcefully dominated.  More forcefully forced.  And this is what he writes me back:

Well, my suddenly rebellious teenager, you have been a bad girl haven’t you? .. So, I ask myself:  Can I be the very strong Daddy you need me to be?  Can I run roughshod over my baby girl when she gets wobbly? .. No, that’s the wrong question, .. Of course I can, .. the better question is do I want to?  A few weeks ago, I would have said, ‘no’, that’s not me, but our D/s dynamic continuously evolves and reveals and awakens, and as we peel back the layers, I am often surprised and occasionally shocked by the severity of my masculine essence, ..  I thrill at turning you over my knee and smacking your ass and cramming your face into our mattress while fucking you, .. Still, the question remains, do I want to run roughshod when you’re rebellious, when you’re reluctant?  Do I need to show you who your Daddy is in those moments?  Is that me?  As you point out, societal indoctrination to respect others is strong, .. ‘no’ means ‘no’ and all that, .. but if my cock is any indication (currently stiff), it’s definitely in my nature to impose and subdue, even when you’re unwilling, so the want is there, .. time will tell if I’m capable, I suppose.

Of course then I ask myself the next obvious question:  What if I’m not the very strong Daddy my baby girl needs?  Where does that leave us?

When I read this, which I basically interpret as, “ I guess we’ll see,” I feel very unsettled.  It’s not what I expected him to say.  I thought it would be something like, oh yeah baby, gonna use whatever dominant force necessary to keep this D/s ship sailing on smooth seas.  Or words to that effect. Instead, I hear him saying he is not sure how dominant he really is.  I don’t like it.  And so I write him back:

Oh Daddy, what a big self-deceiver I have been, and maybe you have been one too.  What in the world are we DOING?  Do we really have any idea of what dominance and submission even means?  I have been so busy focusing on the finer points of submission, and the sexual love juice of it, I never much thought about the domination side of things, only that I knew it was the more difficult side of it, the greater responsibility.  But I take that back – 

I have the more difficult side, because it is really me running this show.  You have said you don’t know if you are capable or not of being in true and literal control of me.  If I am not in the mood, or can’t find the submissive impulse, well you might not be able to insist.  So if there is no dominant on the other side, then by default, it is up to me and my will and my moods and my consent whether it works or not, and that makes ME the fucking dominant, jesus Christ, fucking AGAIN.  And I am PISSED, probably not at you, I think you are amazing brave wonderful to take on this crazy experiment with me at all.

But I am back where I was when I tried to play the dominant role with previous husband, and it slowly occurred to me that the whole thing was happening per his desires, the supposed submissive. I knew then it was all an elaborate play-acting game, and now it seems that no matter which way I turn, I cannot escape elaborate play-acting.  Seriously, how can we call it domination if it is at my pleasure not yours?  As I was pouting and shutting down last night over a stupid fucking butt plug, oh I felt I’d become so absurd, unable to manage my evermore intense desires.  I feel so lost and I don’t know where safety is. It’s supposed to be with you, in your solid sense of what is right for me, but the few times I have pushed it, I have felt your hesitance, you hold back, for what reasons I am not sure. It could be that it just takes time to be confident in a new way of relating.  But it also could be that it is an impossible task, in the real world anyway –

When I read D/s erotica stories, there is no negotiation for “safe, sane and consensual” scenes, there is always some set up in which the woman is given no choice at all, she is forced to submit, sold into marriage, or given to some man for some reason, or some other set up in which he literally owns her or has legal right to her body.  That is the female fantasy of submission, no choice, being owned, forced, that is where the peace lies.  But that is fiction.

I had assumed that submission and being dominated were the same experience, but they’re not.  Submitting by choice is wonderful and sexy, but if it is only by choice, then here comes all the noisy static of choice.  Do I want this, do I like this, am I in the mood for this, and so on.  There is no peace in choice for me.  Being dominated is a much different feel, a more wild and raw thing, and I am discovering I need that as much or even more than simple submission …

It can’t be only my responsibility to make this work, I can’t be the only one who is willing to cross the boundary of acceptability, the only one willing to take all the psychological risk – and oh there is risk.  I have been trying to turn my mind over to you in the most real way, and on some days it has been almost scary effective.  But what is the risk for you?  You smashing my face against the mattress when you know I like and want it?  What is the risk in that?

I don’t know if that is the right question, I don’t what I’m saying, or asking exactly.  I write you all my thoughts, but yours feel hidden to me.  I don’t know what was going through your mind last night.  You seemed upset at the idea of giving up being my Daddy.  You said you NEED to be my Daddy, but why do you need it?  We have agreed that a Daddy is protective and loving and all that.  But what about the domination part of it?  The ownership part of it?  What is domination to you?  What is it that makes you identify as a dominant?  What do you mean when you say you want me to belong to you?  What does that require of me?  What does it require of me if I do not feel like doing what you say, if I am having some mental shut down moment like last night?  Does it require I just go along anyway?  Then that means I become a pretender, a play actor.  That means all the responsibility is on me to make it work.

Tell me, Daddy Husband, what are we DOING?  Your phrase “time will tell” is probably the right one, it has to be allowed to unfold as it will, as we discover it.  We need time and experience to grow into it.  But still, that phrase made me want to weep. If you don’t know one way or the other, then how can you be the dominant?  Isn’t what happens supposed to be by your choice?  I know that’s not fair, I can’t allow myself the luxury of being wobbly in submission, and give you no wobble room at all.  I just know I can’t keep this up if it is essentially only a play-acting charade.  At some point we will have to face that defining moment – do you have it in you truly own me, and to be the strong Daddy I need?

Oh, I am sad you sounded so unsure.  But then, how can you not be unsure?   This is a dark and strange foreign land we have entered, nothing is as it looks on the surface …

I hit send, and then sit in turmoil for the next few hours, wondering if I am dragging us toward the edge of the D/s cliff.  I have the feeling when standing atop a hill and I can see the destination I want to get to, but I can’t see the path to get there.  Or maybe that’s not the right analogy.  Maybe it’s more like I know how to get there, but I can’t drive.  I need Daddy to drive us there.  It takes awhile, but here is what I hear back:

Well, sweet girl, what an odd twist, .. happier than ever two short days ago to full-on crisis tonight.  I’ve been a very bad Daddy, baby girl, .. “time will tell”, Jesus fuck, did I really type that phrase?  What a candy-assed thing to say.  It seemed benign enough in context, .. the D/s way of being does continue to evolve for me, but fuck, you have every right to be pissed, .. at me, not yourself.  I’ll try again in crystal clear terms:  I have an extremely masculine bent.  I prefer the ‘loving dominant’ dynamic, but I get stiff when I think about subduing you, willing or not, and I am very capable of imposing my will.  It isn’t a game or role play; it’s me being my true self, of that I’m certain.  I am the strong Daddy you need.

I close the computer, and I actually cry.  Oh, thank God.  It is only later that I realize he still hasn’t answered the most important question of all:  What exactly are we DOING?

How Dominance & submission (D/s) Leads to More Sex. A Lot More.

Everybody Loves Raymond

Since discovering my sexual submissive self over two years ago, it is almost impossible not to see relationships through that lens as they play out in popular culture or in the news.  For example, I recently saw a rerun of Everybody Loves Raymond, in which poor Raymond is desperate to get laid but can’t get his wife to agree to sex.  He feels angry and resentful, she feels pushed and resentful… Well of course, I couldn’t help but think they both would be soooo much happier if she’d just submit to her horny husband already.  My wonderfully horny husband is never desperate to get laid.  And we are never angry and resentful toward each other.

On Tuesday of this week, I stumbled across an article in the New York Times that announced, “Americans are having less sex.” (https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/08).  A recent study found that in the last twenty years, sexual frequency of sex has declined for all Americans, but especially married couples (from an average of 67 times per year in 1989, to average of 56 times per year in 2014).  Meanwhile, young people are not getting it on as much as older generations did at the same age.  Millennials, says the article, “are having less sex than any other generation previously.”

The authors of the study could not say why sexual frequency had declined, but guessed it could have something to do with technology intruding into our lives and stealing our attention away from each other.  However, I suspect it is more likely because young women today have been brought up in a feminist era that allows them to feel fine about saying “no” to sex.  In fact, they are pretty much obligated to say no if they don’t feel like it.

Just Do It Anyway

I once suggested to a 20-something family member, worried that her boyfriend would leave her because she hadn’t wanted sex in months, that if she wanted to keep the relationship she might want to “just go ahead and do it anyway.”  She was horrified at the suggestion, and said her boyfriend would never agree to it anyway.  “He would never want me to have sex with him if I wasn’t really into it.”  Okay, then.

I run across feminist advice daily on the internet to girls on resisting the “cultural brainwashing” that tells women they should feel obligated to sexually satisfy boys, and focus on what they really want.  I have seen so many version of this – especially lately in response to the Trump ‘pussy-grabbing’ political flash fire – that the advice has now become its own form of cultural brainwashing.  I have even read essays that suggest sex that happens without our full arousal is basically a traumatic event.

It is one thing to point out that women have the right to determine what happens to their own bodies, but we also need to look beyond that point.  We need to ask what happens to our relationships when we listen only to our own moods, satisfy only our own needs?  Are women really happier people when they have sex only when they feel like it, regardless of their partner’s needs?  My family member did not seem happy; rather, she felt her entire relationship in jeopardy, and felt something was “wrong” with her that she didn’t want sex often enough.

I quickly find another article on CNN about a study that explores couples who buck the trend of less sex and actually have more sex. So what is it that determines how often a couple has sex?  The study concluded that it is the personality of the woman, and whether she is “agreeable.” (http://www.cnn.com/2016/05/25)

The study’s authors say that because men want, and initiate, sex more often than women, women are by default “the ‘gatekeepers’ of sex within relationships.”  The higher a wife rated on openness to experience or agreeableness (my translation: submissiveness), the more often the couple had sex.  The husband’s personality, on the other hand, was not a predictor of sexual frequency.

My experience of the world (and numerous marriages) tells me that a woman who says “yes” to her husband’s sexual needs, despite her own level of desire, is going to have a happier more peaceful relationship, not to mention she will feel better due to the many health benefits of sex (https://www.alternet.org/sex-amp-relationships).  The result is that she will be happier herself.

Of course, I’m not the only one who’s figured this out.  A quick Google search confirms that in the past few years, more articles are popping up advising women to ignore our feminist cultural conditioning and go ahead and have sex with our partners whether we feel like it or not.  In Prevention Magazine, there is Why You Should Have Sex Even When You’re Not Feeling it.  At YourTango, there is For a Good Marriage, Have Sex Even if You Aren’t in the Mood.  And CafeMom came up with 11 Reasons to Have Sex When You’re Not in the Mood. (http://www.prevention.com/sex), (http://www.yourtango.com/2014228914)

Sometimes these articles point out that merely by saying yes and getting going, we are likely to find ourselves in the mood after all.  They don’t really say why that is so.  But sexually submissive wives know: submission is hot.  Thanks to the laws of sexual polarity, D/s releases a huge amount of sexual energy.  Beyond that, D/s increases trust and intimacy between two people, and grows love.  In this warm, loving conflict-free state, sex will naturally follow… and follow again and again and again.

Rhett Tames Scarlett; Or, the Desire to Be Dominated

The Ecstacy of Surrender

One of the most iconic love scenes in movie history is in Gone With the Wind, when Rhett Butler overcomes the resistance of Scarlett O’Hara, scoops her up into his arms and carries her up to bed… to presumably force her to submit to his sexual lust.  Cut to the next morning, Scarlett waking up smiling and happy and even singing in bed.  Finally!  After watching their power struggle over the years, now we are hopeful two star-crossed lovers can finally be together in peace.  Then Rhett enters the room, and instead of kissing her and sealing their truce, he expresses regret for his crude behavior.  Scarlett’s happy bubble pops, and they once again fall back to battling each other for the upper hand.

This scene is much loved by romantics – and often reviled by feminists. If I do a Google search for “Rhett Butler” and “dominance,” I find numerous feminist screeds – some vehement, some more vaguely scolding – against what is considered an obvious example of our cultural glamorizing rape.  For example, the author of a book called Love Does No Harm, says this scene presents a “dilemma” to people of moral conscience in the way it eroticizes male dominance and female submission.  It is a patriarchal choice to “portray” the power dynamic this way, says the author.  As if the movie-makers had imposed a perverse frame around what happened between Rhett and Scarlett.

That is, in fact, the feminist argument, that we are culturally conditioned to believe male dominant behavior is sexually exciting.  “In a million books, movies and perfume ads,” says the author of Love, Honor and Negotiate, we are inundated with images of “a powerful and passionate man, bent over a woman who, weak with rapture, is arched back in his arms…”  As if such images have nothing to do with women’s true longings, or how sex might naturally unfold between a man and woman.

These authors are suggesting that a woman who does not recognize that Scarlett was raped by Rhett has been brainwashed by our culture.  But did Rhett really rape Scarlett?  Scarlett clearly didn’t think so.  In the movie, we see her smiling and luxuriating in what happened the night before.  In the novel, Gone with the Wind, Margaret Mitchell describes Scarlett’s feelings about it:

He had humbled her, hurt her, used her brutally through a wild mad night and she had gloried in it.  Oh, she should be ashamed, should shrink from the very memory of the hot swirling darkness! A lady, a real lady, could never hold up her head after such a night. But, stronger than shame, was the memory of rapture, of the ecstasy of surrender. For the first time in her life she had felt alive…

Ah yes, the ecstasy of surrender.

Clearly, Scarlett was not raped, and most women instinctively know this, despite what might be considered the cultural counter-programming of feminism.  We, like Scarlett, might feel we should be “ashamed” to admit it, but Clark Gable as Rhett Butler can still send us into a swoon of longing for a man to sweep us off into a “wild, mad night.”  Well, Clark Gable not just as Rhett, but as any of the dominating males he embodied so well.  I’ve watched him throw Claudette Colbert over his shoulder and whack her on the ass, or pick up Joan Crawford and spank her with a hairbrush while holding her mid-air, without even having to sit down.  (Later in the movie, Joan Crawford shows him she is ready to be with him by actually handing him a hairbrush.)  Same goes for Cary Grant.  Remember how he face-palmed Katherine Hepburn and pushed her onto her ass in Philadelphia Story?

Or, think about Burt Lancaster chasing Deborah Kerr up the beach in From Here to Eternity.  She falls onto the blanket, lies submissively waiting as he looms over her, then he falls on top of her, gives her a ravishing kiss.  She lies there as if in a trance, sighs and says, “I never knew it could be like this.”  Oh yes, the glory days of Hollywood were full of dominating males, and you knew once a hero spanked the heroine, with her kicking and hollering to the playful music, they were destined to reach their happily-ever-after. Even all the way through the early 80’s, the macho men of the silver screen, epitomized by actors like Jack Nicholson, would take charge of their women in a hands-on way.

Meanwhile, on the print side, Kathleen Woodiwiss practically invented the historical romance in 1972 with her “bodice ripper” novel The Flame and the Flower, and it’s dominating hero.  I read it as a teenager, not knowing how controversial the first sex scene in the book (in which the hero forces himself on his soon-to-be-love) would eventually become.  I only knew it thrilled me, and throughout my teenage years, I devoured romance novels just like it, one after the other after the other.

But feminism has in many ways won the argument, at least on the female side.  While action movies, video games and ads directed at men still push images of submissive women, no mainstream romance intended for women – whether in print or on the screen – now celebrates a dominant man in the bedroom.  Only jerks or villains treat women in such a way.  Female sexual submission has been shoved from the mainstream to the fringe, and is now reserved for BDSM porn, or naughty erotic novels.  Although, once in awhile, some of those naughty erotic novels, like 50 Shades of Grey, explode in popularity and hit the mainstream anyway.

It is definitely a conundrum to feminists that, despite decades of female empowerment and consciousness-raising, so many women still become aroused at the idea of sexual male dominance.  And it is now a conundrum to me, the first time I get down on my knees before my husband in response to his sexual command.  However thrilled I am in this moment, I am not oblivious to the harm done by the sexual objectification of women in our culture.  And in the months to come I will often have to beat back the disapproving feminist voice in my head, and give myself permission to do what my body tells me it wants.  Cultural conditioning cuts both ways, and feminism is sometimes as guilty as patriarchy in telling us that we cannot trust ourselves or our desires.

Feeling Electrified

At this moment though, kneeling in front of Michael as he unzips his jeans, I am experiencing a thrill unlike anything I’ve known before.  I feel electrified.  I feel alive. How wonderful to discover that all the rapturous language in movies and romance novels is not just reserved for fantasy, but can made real.  
And not made real by the arrival of some impossible, fictional hero, but made real with my own sweet husband.  As Scarlett O’Hara realizes about Rhett Butler the morning after he ravished her, a man she’d been married to for years: “The man who carried her up the dark stairs was a stranger whose existence she had not dreamed.”

Right now, I know how Scarlett felt, because the man sitting in the easy chair with the drink in his hand, watching me with his smoldering gaze as I take his cock into my mouth is now new to me.  And he’s reminding me very much of Rhett Butler – unpredictable, powerful, irresistible.  I don’t know what will happen between us next.  But like Scarlett, I know I am going to glory in it.