For many years (the ones I was with Jack), I didn’t spend a great deal of time or energy on the kinky online community. I kept up on my favorite blogs, and once in a great while posted here, but for the most part I shared my inner spanko with only Jack. For me, that was easier. I put on an outgoing face, because it is expected, but deep down I am really very shy. Sharing all those innermost parts of myself with one person was difficult enough, sharing them with an entire group (even the safest sort, neatly tucked away behind computer screens somewhere far far away) was another thing entirely.
I don’t think I realized, at first, that when I ended the relationship with Jack I wasn’t only walking away from someone I truly loved, but from that safety net as well. I no longer had the luxury of hiding in my cozy little world and I determined to strike out and rebuild a bit of the community I had let slip away.
Mostly it has been a good experience. But I’ve learned some things along the way. I am not the same person I was five years ago. I am not a blank slate. I am not set in stone. There are many things I want or need, and many that I don’t. I understand that I’ll compromise on most of them; that two people together are not the whole of them apart – we shift and change, meld and blend, and are better for it, I think.
What I cannot, or perhaps will not, understand, are the people who expect me to be nothing but a reflection of their own needs and desires. Those who send demands for more information about me, but take no time to introduce themselves or tell me why we might get along. Those who are offended by my refusal to feel the least bit submissive to them although we have only just met. And most especially those who start by telling me how they need time to get to know someone, and then after sending three messages of about a sentence each, are suddenly surprised that I don’t know them well enough to run off with them.
I am a woman, I enjoy spanking, I happen to be single. I am all of those things, but they are not all of me. I don’t compartmentalize my spanko self, she is interwoven with every other part of me – the businesswoman, the friend, the citizen, etc – and that makes her both stronger and more vulnerable. I am as careful with her as with all the others, and I’d like to think others are too.
So I have to ask, as I browse through my FetLife messages, has it always been like this? Did I just not notice before? Can’t we all just agree to be polite and respectful and to take the time to get to know each other? When did we all become so impatient that we have lost touch with the journey and focus only on the destination? Perhaps we’ll find that we don’t agree on the important things, perhaps we won’t get along. I still can’t consider any time I’ve spent getting to know someone a waste, because invariably I also get to know something new about myself.
And yet, I understand the rush, the need to find someone who can fill this void that has been growing larger. I can see how finding balance can be difficult. And I wonder if what I perceive as pushy and impatient isn’t something else, something more elusive and harder to define. Maybe it is, but I still think there’s a place for politeness and common courtesy. If you don’t, please find somewhere else to hang your hat and another woman to message.