Saturday, January 14, 2012

On Communication

Some days ago I got my login for Dreams Of Spanking and for the first time watched several of Pandora's videos in their full length. Among them was The Taxman Cometh. I have to admit that I was a bit scared of watching that clip because I remembered that the dialogue at the beginning of the scenario was quite long and that managing it in English was a challenge for me. Communication is a very important part for me in spanking clips and I wasn't sure whether my improvised part of the dialogue and the subsequent scolding during the spanking had been fluent and convincing enough. I'm always slightly uncomfortable with my German accent as well and afraid that native speakers could find it annoying.

Fred Bloggs had written a review of Dreams Of Spanking some days earlier, though, and explicitly mentioned that he liked both "The Taxman Cometh" and my accent. So, I decided to give it a try. And, surprisingly, I really liked the clip! Sure, there were a few small pauses because I was looking for the appropriate words, and there was the one or other small grammatical mistake. But I neither found the dialogue boring nor unrealistic, and I found my character believable as well.

To my great relief, it was also obvious that I gave everything during the spanking and didn't merely dish out love taps. Admittedly, the video isn't really severe, but it is absolutely real in that I used my hand and the hairbrush to their full effect. It is that kind of realism that I like in spanking clips. In short, I was very happy after having watched the video!

All I have to learn now is to feel less uncomfortable when speaking English. That would surely make the dialogue even more natural and me looking more relaxed. But talking in front of a camera isn't the only field in which I could improve my communication skills! As I watched several other Dreams Of Spanking videos, I came across a very special one that really touched me and showed me how much I have still to learn when it comes to communication during an erotic spanking with my mate.

The video I'm talking about is called "A Yuletide Birching" and features Pandora and Thomas Cameron. There is no storyline, no set, no costumes, not even a special premise for the spanking – the scenario is raw in the best sense of the word. Just a loving couple, a birch that was given to Pandora as a gift by a friend, a bedroom and an intense birching to try out the new implement.

As I wrote in my post Spanking Porn: That's Too Sexy? I'm not always into full nudity in spanking videos. In this clip Pandora is completely naked and it absolutely fits from my point of view because the video depicts an intimate spanking between lovers. The birching is rather severe, right to the point I love.

What attracts me is that while Tom is clearly challenging Pandora and taking her to her limit, his aim is not to break but to empower her. He doesn't go easy on Pandora, but at the same time he carries her through the experience with his voice, gazes and reassuring touch, and he always makes sure that she has enough time to process the pain without starting to panic. And all that is only possible because Pandora constantly stays in contact with him and gives him verbal and non-verbal feedback on her physical and psychological state.

For me as a viewer the communication between the two isn't in any way disruptive. Quite the contrary, it makes the scene very special and gives me the feeling that Pandora and Tom let the viewers in on something very intimate and beautiful. It seems that in several aspects of our spanking kink, Pandora and I are ticking quite similarly, anyway. But I think it's the combination of those similarities and the fascinating communication between her and Tom which allows me to feel with and very close to Pandora when I watch this scene.

I would like to give you an example: After stroke number 15, a particular hard one that you see in the preview clip which I have embedded, Tom tells Pandora that it's nine more to go. Pandora, obviously being at her limit, replies honestly: "I don't know quite how that's going to work." Tom's simple and reassuring answer: "I think, slowly..." Now, that sentence could of course also be interpreted as a kind of mockery, but Tom's tone of voice makes the message absolutely clear: You can and you are going to make it. Don't push yourself too hard. I am going to make sure that you get the time you need to go through it.

Pandora is still fighting with processing the pain at that point and remarks: "I think I'm crying." Tom reassures her: "That's okay."  And he continues telling her that something would be wrong if she didn't cry during such a hard birching. Again it is absolutely clear that what he says is meant as a reassurance that Pandora doesn't have to feel in any way weak for crying and that she is indeed very brave given the severity of the spanking. As the regular readers might know, I'm neither into crying when I'm on the receiving end of a spanking (except for rare occasions on which I seek release), nor am I very fond of tears in spanking videos. But in this scenario, with the great and caring communication between the two participants, I'm being put at ease.

The particular dialogue is not in the preview clip, but I think it shows what I have been talking about, nonetheless. Have a look and make up your own opinion:

When I compare my communication skills as a bottom to Pandora's, I realise how much I still have to learn. My communication has already become better, in the sense that I now for example give feedback if an implement is wrapping around too much or if I realise that my pain threshold on a particular day is rather low. I also at least sometimes show stronger reactions when I'm struggling with a spanking. But I'm still far from Pandora's communication skills.

Especially when a spanking gets more severe, I often find myself completely focussed on processing the pain and being brave. That keeps me from staying in communicative contact with Ludwig and giving him clear signals. I guess that I'm also still not really comfortable with openly admitting when I'm reaching my personal limit for the day, because that instantly makes me feel like a wimp, even though I know Ludwig would never see me as one.

It is not that I don't trust Ludwig enough in order to let go. For example, I can cry in his arms when I am sad about something, or stressed out. But when it comes to spanking, I usually seek empowerment. And if I don't manage to live up to my own expectations then, I'm silently starting to panic, my mind turns blank and my communication skills leave me.

Maybe I can learn to signal early on when I need more time to process the pain, though. Because like Pandora, I don't necessarily need leniency concerning the severity of the strokes. It's the breaks in between them that can prevent me from panicking and allow me to gain that feeling of strength I'm looking for. It seems that I'm not looking as stiff as I thought when topping in English. Maybe I won't look as wimpish as I think when communicating more openly as a bottom, either?

How about your experiences on the topic of communication during a spanking, be it as a bottom or as a top? Have your communication skills changed and developed over time? Do you communicate differently depending on the scenario, play partner, your mood or other aspects? What form of communication do you seek during a spanking?


Fenris said...

Kaelah, I think you did great in Pandora's video. If I had to do a film with native speakers, I would probably feel uncomfortable too about my accent, but rest assured that I didn't think a second about it when I watched the video and I can't really imagine a native speaker being annoyed by your accent.

Concerning communication: Yes, I certainly do think that communication with your partner is one of the most important aspects, and not only during kinky activities.
I don't want to watch a scene in which a top tries to break the bottom mentally or physically just for his own pleasure and against the will of the bottom. If I may draw a comparison: A spanking scene should be like classic dancing. One leads, one follows, but it is harmony and intimacy which makes the whole thing interesting. Of course, this does not exclude teasing one another and playing with the dynamics of dominance and submission. For example, I love the videos on Erica Scott's blog. The way how she mocks the top is great. Just watch this video:

This is also a nice way to communicate: As long as the bottom keeps on sassing, the top knows he is within safe limits. And if the bottom thinks his limits are reached, he can just cooperate and comply.

As I already expressed in another discussion, I share your opinions concerning crying and tears. Seeing someone cry always makes me feel very uncomfortable, not only in real life but also in movies. This has nothing to do with some macho stuff of being tough. I just think that crying is something very intimate and there is no real need to film it. I always found it extremely disgusting when they show crying people in the news, for example after some disaster. To me, this is just tasteless exploitation.
Of course, crying because of emotional release is something different and can be a very positive thing, but I don't really have the desire to witness such an intimate moment if I don't know the other person very well.

Simon said...

As long as you trust the person doing it I think communication during punishment can be kept to a minimum, During a session with my Mistress I try to keep as quiet as possible except for an occasional "Thank You" and of course the odd moan and groan at a particularly hard stroke. She can always tell when I am reaching my limit by my movements and facial expressions. Sometimes this leads to a break followed by further punishment or it can mean that the session is nearing the end although she will often find some other way of punishing me that does not involve beating. This happy state of affairs was not arrived at overnight but has been the result of a relationship lasting many years. It is clear that Pandora has a similar understanding with her punisher in the clip and that makes the film more interesting. I felt that you and Ludwig had the same thing going on during your Lurkers clip.

Our Bottoms Burn said...

Marlene Dietrich, for one, had great appeal to English speaking audiences.

I have some difficulty understanding some British accents.

In short, you have no worries.

! said...

My communication varies greatly from partner to partner. For example, when I'm playing with a long-time partner who already knows how to read my body language and knows when enough is enough, I am a little lighter on the communication. When I am playing with someone new, I am really quite direct and blunt about it.

In some situations, I know that begging would be the only appropriate way to decrease the severity of a spanking.

When I am being punished for something that has happened in my real life, my mentality is more along the lines of "suck it up and take it, because you go yourself into this mess." Most of the time, these punishments have been previously agreed upon, for example, mediocre grades at school.

That being said, I am, on many occasions, a brat. I will sometimes use communication skills to manipulate the top, and to be honest, the ones who manage to catch it are the ones who stay as my consistent play partners.

Quai said...

I agree that communication is important during spanking, just as it is in negotiation before a spanking and in after care. During a spanking, depending on the familiarity and trust between partners, so much can be communicated through body language and spankee reactions. I'm lucky enough to be an empath, so those non-verbal reactions are particularly obvious to me.

I would imagine you communicate a lot more to Ludwig than you realize.

Best Regards,

vincent said...

I had a German sister in law and I loved her accent.

Especially when she added "for sure" at the end of most sentences.
As in " I would like to be going to the xxxxxxxx, for sure."


Mind you, so was she, which may have had an influence.

Kaelah said...

@ Fenris:
You are absolutely right, communication is vital for a relationship, not only during a spanking. Luckily, Ludwig and I are communicating very openly and honestly in our relationship, so that isn't a problem at all. It's just in some situations during a spanking that my mind turns blank and I lose my communication skills.

I very much like Erica's clips as well. But being sassy is not for me. It just isn't how I am wired. And Ludwig is not overly fond of bratting, either, so we fit quite well here. But of course we have a different form of communication and it usually works well. I just hope that I will be able to improve it even in situations when a spanking is more challenging and my instincts tell me to focus only on myself.

I think I am not completely opposed to seeing tears, but under certain circumstances I find them rather scary in spanking films and then they are a turn-off for me.

@ Simon:
Thank you for your comment! It is very interesting to hear how you felt about Ludwig's and my communication in the LOL Day clip. Because of having been involved, I of course can't watch the clip from the perspective of an objective viewer. I think generally Ludwig and I have a good communication, anyway. But there are certain moments during some spankings when I would like to improve my "mid-spanking" communication skills.

@ Our Bottoms Burn:
Thank you! :-)

@ !:
I can be quite blunt, too! :-) Especially when I am craving a spanking or when I want more. I usually say that directly, then, because Ludwig isn't too fond of bratting and might become rather annoyed if I try it that way.

@ Quai:
Welcome and thanks for sharing your thoughts!

Ludwig and I surely communicate during a spanking (verbally and non-verbally) and usually it works out fine. The only problem is that similar reactions don't always mean the same at different times. For example, Ludwig and I are both into very restrained reactions. Most of the time when I'm showing only restrained reactions, it means that I'm fine. Sometimes it can mean that I'm really struggling and simply can't communicate it because I'm completely focussed on myself and "surviving", though. Or, sometimes stronger reactions just mean that I'm in a good mood and just let go, but at other times they mean that I'm on the edge and feeling overwhelmed.

What I would like to learn is to make those two states of mind more obvious to Ludwig. I guess the only way to reach that goal is to give a signal much earlier when I realise that something might go wrong. On the other hand I don't want to make our play less enjoyable by permanently sending warning signals. As you surely know from your own experience, often a bottom feels on the edge for a moment but then realises that the intensity of the spanking is actually okay. It's only sometimes that the mood or physical circumstances don't allow the bottom to get on top of the pain or into the mindset he or she is looking for.

@ vincent:
Thank you, I hope that the viewers are going to like me enough to find my accent nice as well! :-)

Murray said...

Kaelah is using Spanking here as the generic term for any chastisement of the female posterior.Other considerations apply to the narrower OTK term.

K has featured OTK only in Untroduction, by which time we knew her quite well,, and understood she was being Brave not Bored. However, a newcomer might
reach a different conclusion.

An OTK spankee can be either rebellious or submissive, but should end up tearful and contrite,with much kicking and squirming en route.
K does not seem remotely interested in tearful and contrite , while a Klingon would
surely die rather than kick and
squirm. We are unlikely to see her in OTK roles.

A canee? That's a different matter....

Kaelah said...

@ Murray:
Indeed I'm not really interested in tearful and contrite. I guess I'm a bit more confident with showing slightly more vivid reactions now, though, than I was when we filmed “Enter the Dachshund”. But still my reactions remain rather restrained and far from wild kicking, squirming and loud noises. Both Ludwig and I prefer rather restrained reactions.

I'm not even sure whether my reactions as a canee are more interesting from your point of view, because they are rather restrained as well. You will see a lot of teeth gritting, wincing, hard breathing (one time I even ended up hyperventilating, but I wouldn't want to repeat that) and maybe suppressed moaning, but no loud screaming, kicking, begging or crying. I have cried a bit after some private canings between Ludwig and me were over, but quite frankly I wouldn't want to go there on video and I indeed prefer not to cry even in private play most of the time. I usually play in order to feel empowered, not contrite.

Well, to each their own! There are a lot of girls out there who kick and squirm a lot and who are into being contrite and tearful. So, my way of reacting to spankings might be interesting for those who are looking for some variety from time to time.