Bottoms Up: Kinky Resolutions

Every year around now I pretend that time is real and start thinking more intentionally about how I should spend it. New year’s resolutions sometimes feel contrived, because if I wanted to restart my life why would I do it in the dead of winter when it’s dark 13 hours a day? 2017 will probably not be when “new year, new me” finally takes hold, but goal setting feels good and so does taking inventory and looking at where I am and where I want to be.

I want to be a submissive person who knows what they want and feels comfortable asking for it. Kink is tied to my personal growth — sexually, emotionally, mentally — and I want to keep those things in mind when I think about my kinky goals. I want to explore the ways that I can have agency and autonomy within a dynamic where I purposefully leave myself vulnerable. I want to explore being submissive in public without unintentionally bringing other people into my sex life. I don’t want kink to be a side of my life; I want a way for it to be fully integrated into who I am.

But those are huge goals that I’ll be working on for the rest of my life, and something I’ve learned this year is that setting huge goals without also setting attainable smaller goals makes achievement feel almost impossible. So, in more reachable terms, in 2017 I hope to join more organizations that help me build kinky community, I want to become a better rope bottom and I want to develop a system that helps me be more self-disciplined.

Building community — not even necessarily kinky community — is hard. I’m a natural introvert who lives alone without a car and I really like my apartment. But I also love being with like-minded people, and building community feels so necessary. It feels like the biggest cliché, but especially when I think about how I’m going to navigate and survive the next four years, I know I can’t do it alone. I recently went to a play party specifically for kinky QTPOC and I left on such a high because I knew I wasn’t alone. It feels impossible to meet queer kinky people outside of the internet, let alone queer kinky folks of color, but being in that space made me feel like I didn’t have to be alone forever.

I feel lonely a lot, but I cannot cultivate friendships or date if I never leave my house, and staying home all the time is my number one inclination. I’ve got to do the work of building community. Going to that play party was one of the ways I began working towards that goal, and it’s something I want to keep doing next year. I’m also going to join a Little Scouts troop — a skills-based kink organization modeled around scouting for ageplayers — where I live as a way to meet other folks engaging in kink in this way and as a way to develop some skills I’ve been wanting to work on.

And I’m hoping to become an amazing rope bottom. I love the Little Scouts because they’re activity-centered, so there are badges to earn and goals to set. I learned recently that I love being tied up and I want it more often. Learning the skills to becoming a better rope bottom will aid me in feeling submission in my body. Writing about submission is one way I’ve been able to work through new experiences, but I need to have those experiences to write about them! Bondage in particular is a part of BDSM that I’ve fantasized about a lot and that I’ve played with alone, but I want more practice with other people.

What feels most immediate when I’m thinking about setting goals, however, is self-discipline. In the past, I’ve thought about BDSM this way: it’s fine if I don’t have any self-discipline because one day I won’t be single anymore and my super hot dom will be there to help me out with it. But I realized this year that someone else isn’t going to instill discipline in me just by being there, and that I can’t make my self-discipline someone else’s responsibility. If I want to be disciplined, it’s got to be something I get for myself. Discipline and routine, for me, are signs of care and love. They keep me grounded, and more importantly they keep me always moving forward.

All of these goals are just tangible ways for me to do the work that it takes to feel like the person I want to feel like in the coming year. The world is fucked up right now, and more than anything I want to love myself and surround myself with love. That love is work, just like my submission is work. And as I grow more into the submissive I want to be, I grow to love myself more.

Alaina is a 20-something working on a PhD in Performance as Public Practice. They are a mom to three cats, they listen to a lot of NPR and musicals, and they spend a lot of time on Pinterest lusting over studio apartments. They are actively trying to build A Brand on twitter @alainamonts. One day, they will be First Lady of the United States.

Al(aina) has written 267 articles for us.

6 Comments

  1. “Discipline and routine, for me, are signs of care and love. They keep me grounded, and more importantly they keep me always moving forward.” <—This resonated with me a lot, and it articulated something that I didn't know needed to say but it feels good to have the words.

    You write beautifully, Alaina, and thanks for sharing all of these parts of yourself with us. Your column always gives me a lot to think about, because it's all so foreign to me. I hope that's not insulting, but as someone who engages in BDSM for sexual pleasure, I have never really thought or considered the ways in which it informs the rest of my life. The way your identity seems to be so deeply intertwined with being a sub, both in and out of the bedroom, is endlessly fascinating to me and gives me a lot of space for reflection and contemplation as well. So thanks!

  2. I love hearing the ways you put yourself out there and try new things in search of community, as a fellow introvert I constantly need reminders to leave my house and meet people if I want to make friends or date so I appreciate hearing how you do that.

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