Saturday, April 5, 2014

Kaelah's Corner (Mar 2014):
Don't Let Me Down


Welcome to a very belated edition of Kaelah's Corner. Today I would like to discuss a little observation about my kink that recently crossed my mind. The thing is, I realised that in my kinky fantasies, especially those which are about young midshipmen and naval discipline, a very crucial part that gives me a big thrill is not the punishment itself but the moment when the errant miscreants have to admit their wrongdoing to their mentor.

The interesting thing about that observation is that the idea of not meeting a close person's expectations is one of the most horrible ideas I can think of in real life. Letting someone I love down and – the worst thing of all – making them feel sad is something I fear and something that can cause me a strong feeling of guilt.

Of course, it is not a good idea to always fulfil other people's expectations and needs, even when they are loved ones. Because what it means is that one obviously doesn't really respect one's own needs. Even those who really care for us, like our parents and our mates, try to get their own needs and desires fulfilled in their relationship with us, no matter whether they are aware of it or not. For instance, I think most parents want their children to be successful in life not only for the child's well-being, but also because it makes them feel proud and proves to them that they have done a good job as parents. And a wife who looks after her husband in times of illness surely hopes that he will be thankful and love her all the more afterwards.

Sometimes we want and need the same things as our loved ones and sometimes we want and need different things. If the latter occurs, our needs and limits have to be discussed and compromises found. This can mean that we have to disappoint our loved ones by telling them that we can't give them what they desire from us. Sometimes we simply can't fulfil their expectations.

I'm not good at finding compromises when loved ones want something from me that I can't / am not willing to give. Which doesn't mean that I always do what they want. Quite the contrary, I can become very self-protective and defend my needs and limits harshly (or at least I feel like I am very clear and even harsh; Ludwig often tells me that I don't sound as clear and harsh as I think). But seeing a loved one being sad because of something I have done or am not willing to do makes me feel incredibly guilty and sad.

So, I wonder whether the part of admitting that one has fallen short of a loved one's expectations is so vital in my kinky fantasies because it is something I can't deal with in real life? Maybe incorporating this aspect into my kink has a therapeutic effect? It definitely is something that gives me a huge thrill when developing kinky stories in my head.

At the same time it is something which I am very reluctant to try for real in my kinky play, not only when it comes to real-life issues. Even in a role-play scenario where I would have to admit a fictional "wrongdoing", the idea is rather scary and I am afraid that it might suddenly feel all too real and horrible instead of thrilling. Maybe I will try it one day, playing a young midshipman. That would be very far from the real me, so I think the chance that it might suddenly feel too real is rather low.

For now I wonder if others have made similar observations. What about you? Does your kink involve any crucial elements which give you a thrill in the context of kink but are related to your deepest fears in real life? If yes, why do you think are these elements incorporated in your kink? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comment section!


Anonymous said...

My lovely Kaelah,

I can’t imagine you ever disappointing anyone. With you intelligence, mindfulness, and empathy, I find you to be a highly responsible and thoughtful person.

However, that’s not really your question, is it?

I read your post at least three times, and I’m still having trouble grasping it. The fault is NOT yours. As always, your English is flawless. The problem is with me.

The difficulty I’m having is this: if I were to incorporate my biggest fear with my biggest turn on, my inherent self-worth would be put on trial, and I would lose, every time. It would be like me playing chess against a powerful computer at its highest settings under normal tournament conditions. The outcome would be predictable and would never vary. Disappointment would be inescapable, would it not?

I’m sure you know others who, despite their greatest efforts and best achievements, could not please the one individual who mattered most, especially if that individual were already dead. No amount of role-play can overcome the grave or opinions so rigidly set in stone that only time and erosion could erase.

Such a predicament would be a nightmare, I believe.

Maybe I need to re-read your post again.

Peter8862 said...

Two thoughts arise from your blog, Kaelah, of which I am sure you are already well aware :
a. Very few altruistic acts in life are truly brave or unselfish but the effect of the compensatory satisfactions is a matter of degree.
b. Apropos saddening loved ones, we seem to have the unhappy knack of only remembering our insensitive moments and our unkind words and acts. This is particularly true where the loved one is now beyond our reach. So perhaps we were rather nicer people in general than we think. Unless of course we allow for all the errors we have forgotten or never recognised... Peter

Respecting Mistress said...

Very interesting, thought-provoking post Kealah - as always. You've put into words something I've always struggled to explain about our on DD regime.

We decided some time ago to use domestic discipline to correct my real faults, instead of our once playful spanking games.

And I do have many faults - laziness, being disrespectful without realising it, moodiness, and a sharp tongue if I'm in a bad mood etc and we both felt it would help our relationship if Mistress had a means to correct me - rather than have long, drawn-out hours or days of bad feeling.

It only works if the disciplinary methods have some degree of severity - which Mistress ensures they most certainly do.

But thinking about it after reading your post, I realise that the main reason I felt it would be a positive step in our relationship was partly born out of the selfish desire to help assuage my feelings of guilt from letting my beloved partner down.

As you say, there is no thrill from the punishment, but neither is there a thrill from the moment I admit to my wrong doings. What there is though is a very real admission of my faults and all the guilt that it carries, followed by a very real punishment.

There is no thrill as such, before, during or after punishment, but the pleasure I derive post-punishment is:

1) to know that my shortcomings have been corrected in a manner we both agree suits us and benefits our relationship overall

2) that Mistress will derive pleasure from administering an effective correction (she takes great pride in her role as disciplinarian)

3) a deep feeling of increased love and affection I have for Mistress for dealing with me in such a manner and keeping me on track

It sounds to me that when you do come up short in your loved one's expectations, you hide that aspect in your kink - and the resulting punishment does, indeed, offer a therapeutic effect.

Maybe the only difference between your discipline and mine is that you dress in your midshipman's outfit to admit your faults. I stand before Mistress and am lectured on mine. The resulting punishment appears to have a similar psychological effect on us both perhaps.

Val said...

if I am reading it correctly, the question comes down to the essential: when you let a loved one down, do the act of admission and feeling of contrition come together to add up to the worst possible punishment? And the necessary corollary: How does all that open the door to redemption?
For you cannot forever dwell on it, yet for fairness' sake you do want to atone somehow, and at this point the deepest contrition comes with letting go and abandoning oneself to the decision of the wronged one.
The redemption then comes either through the expressed forgiveness, or self-imposed retribution through acts of penance that one might choose oneself until satisfied that one has paid for one's wrongdoing.
All that involves moral thought, fairness, equal love to and from your peers or superiors (be they ship masters or parents, for example), and rests with one's constant desire to be "good." This does not involve social pathologies and criminality.
Which leaves us, once again, with balancing kink and real life feelings and situations. I try very hard, confessional-like, to find really bad thing that I did and that I want others not to know about, that i know would sadden them and motivate them to take retribution against me in some unpleasant way, including the withdrawal of affection. I cannot come up with it, which does not mean that I am perfect but I suspect, like Kaelah, I am very conscious of how I cannot give in to their wants and demands on me. For this reason I did not feel terribly bad when my father would go into conniptions that I did not get First Prize and Medal in school that year - again, or that my team did not win the championship that year, again - so what I would think, then take the consequences and/or live with the pain, withdrawal of privilege, or whatever they decided to give out.
How does this relate to kink? First , it felt liberating when I realized that beating me (and I use the word figuratively, not only to physical actions), does not make me feel bad, but only resentful of those doing it to me when I though that they were wrong and mean and I had no respect towards them. Second, it is reassuring to know, as adults, that we do not need the added ambiguity and it is perfectly fine to enjoy one's kink in spite of its apparent contradictions.

Kaelah said...

@ Annapurna:
I guess the thing is that I don't want to incorporate any real aspects into my kinky play. That would be horrible and wouldn't work for me. But I think that one of the reasons why I might be fascinated by the idea of someone being scolded and punished is that this is a general fear of mine in real life and by incorporating it into kinky play I turn it into something good that causes me a positive thrill. Maybe this is a way of reducing the fear of situations in which people might be disappointed of me. Because, as I said, sometimes it is necessary to disappoint others in order to only do things that are good for oneself.

@ Peter8862:
I think what you said is absolutely right! And I am happy because I don't really have any bigger regrets in my life so far. I am not talking about huge things here, but about a general fear of having to tell someone: "Sorry, but (right now) I can't give you what you want." That's a normal part of life, though, and I think there is no reason to feel bad about not only caring about others but caring about oneself, too. As you said, I also think that even seemingly altruistic actions usually aren't purely altruistic but also give the one who performs them a positive feeling or other compensation. And there is nothing bad about that!

@ Respecting Mistress:
Thanks a lot for sharing your thoughts on the subject! I think you got me wrong concerning one important aspect, though: I don't think that the situations in which I disappoint the expectations others have or in which I can't give others what they want are situations in which I have done something bad that requires any form of punishment. These are usually situations in which I have to find a balance between my needs and limits and my loved one's needs and limits. Always giving others what they want would mean not to treat myself respectfully and not to take enough care for myself. Still it makes me sad if I have to make another person (especially a close / loved person) sad. So my idea is that I might incorporate situations like that into my kink in order to overcome that fear and change that scenario into something positive and thrilling.

@ Val:
Yes, the desire to be "good" seems to be very deeply ingrained in some of us. But it is important to take good care of oneself, too, and not always do what others want from us. Like you I can't remember a really bad thing in my life that was hurtful to loved ones and which I regret. Still I find it hard to tell someone I respect or even love that I can't give them what they want. The great thing about becoming older is that I learn to observe these situations more carefully and therefore handle them with more awareness and compassion. Thank you very much for your comment!

Anonymous said...

My lovely Kaelah,

I know what you mean.

For me, such content and fantasy might give me more control over potentially difficult situations in the future, should they arise. They might also allow me to cope with past situations to keep them from becoming possible PTSD engrams.

Kaelah said...

@ Annapurna:
I believe everything that helps us to cope with memories from the past or challenges in the future is always great. I don't think that erotic spanking play makes a huge difference in that regard, but maybe the fantasies and the play experiences have at least some small positive effects in the one or other situation. That would already be a good additional outcome in my view (apart from the fun).