I’ve got Harold’s arms cuffed to chains hanging from the ceiling. His legs are spread, balls tied to a bolt in the floor. I can’t resist bending to put my mouth around his rock hard cock. He gasps and tells me to hurt him. I offer him his choice of ball whacking implements. I start gently and work up to blows that make his knees give out. Can he take more? I think so. I look in his eyes and drink in his fear, his pain, his surrender, his need, his absolute love, as I hit him again, harder. Harold recovers, grits his teeth, looks me in eyes, and says, “Again.”
This is the way that Harold and I typically make love. It really works for us, but lately I’ve been wondering – who’s on top? Sex is often about power exchanges. Domination and submission, top and bottom, Mistress and slave – all of these terms imply a power differential. Is it possible to have a sexual power exchange between equals?
In a way, what we do is dominance play. We’re like wolves – circling, snapping, growling, pouncing, pushing – neither of us stronger than the other, both of us willing to take a tumble. But we also both have a real need to be taken. I am willing to be laid bare before my lover, to give him all that I am, and I need to know that he is strong enough to take all that. Although we play with bondage and pain, this isn’t about those things. It is about trust and emotion and release and acceptance. And ultimately about control.
I have done my experimenting with traditional D/s relationships. In my early 20’s I was submissive, wanting to be hurt so all of my emotional pain had an outlet. I didn’t know how to ask for what I wanted and I was willing to be humiliated for the intense sexual release shame provided. By my late 20’s I had a better idea of what I liked: more bondage, less pain, more love, less shame, and way more orgasms. In my 30’s I’ve been more of a top, wanting to play my lovers like a musical instrument, each gasp and moan part of a rich symphony.
When Harold and I were first together we spent a lot of time deferring to each other. (I don’t know, what do you want to do?) Over time we’ve built up a lot of trust and a deep understanding of each other’s bodies. At this point, we really do play each other’s bodies artfully. And we do trust one another enough to give up the whole symphony – every sound, every tear, every orgasm.
This isn’t sex play any more. When I can look in Harold’s eyes know that I hold more than his cock in my hands… When he can bring me to orgasm a few more times than I though possible, screaming until I’m hoarse… When we kiss and my whole body responds and I know that I would do anything to keep kissing this man… I think it’s real, no matter who is on top.