Well - more than spankings really.......
I think that the gamut runs from entirely sensual (the Dom does things that the sub loves, just enough, just the right way at just the right time, just the way she/he wants it, etc, etc... ) all the way to the other end of the spectrum (no safeword, just beat the hell out of the sub, no regard to her/his state of mind or body.) I haven't found the rating scale or operational definitions, but we are somewhere in between. Really, we jump all over, although certainly not towards the latter end of the spectrum.
Yesterday was nearer the sensual end. The day before, he did and said the things he knew would build my arousal. There was a lovely otk spanking the night before, then he teased me just to the edge, he used me, he whispered about the things he would do to me... There was a long, slow warm up that built in intensity perfectly, there were the implements i really love, there was touching and teasing and finally bringing me way over the edge.
He likes to make me happy. It took me a long time to accept and believe this; maybe not believe it's true, but believe it's ok. I guess that has always been my personality. All my life and still now, i have a very hard time letting people do things for me. But he wants to. He wants me to be happy, not in an indulged way, but in a filled with joy way. He especially wants to play my body and my mind to bring me pleasure (ok - so maybe that is indulging). And he especially loves to make me come.
Earlier in the week was a different time. I was preoccupied and edgy and given the choice, probably would have chosen to skip the whole thing. I know that the intensity, if not the pace, was not very different from yesterday - many of the implements were the same even. But my perception of it was entirely different. The restraints that usually move me to a different headspace only frustrated me. It hurt - pure and simple, beginning to end. And i was angry, mad, seething and not very able to control my breathing much less the rest of me.
We have safewords. Beyond that, he has stopped a few times in the past when he feels worried by the way i am acting or by what i say, even if not a safeword. We stop, talk and talk to figure out what's wrong; no harm, no foul. I have never used our words, and i didn't this time. In fact, I don't think i even asked him in plain English to stop.
And this is the part that makes me wonder. Why wouldn't i ask him to stop - either in plain words or with a safeword. Those are two very different issues i'm sure. Using the words 'stop' or 'quit' or such wouldn't really mean anything in that context, but would require me to let go of my control over myself and just be and do. And i'm not always able to let go of myself to that degree.
Using a safeword is a different matter. It would mean a great deal, it would stop the action, it should mean something is really wrong. To me - it should mean i am genuinely distressed or afraid. And I wasn't. I was furious, I wanted it all to end, but i didn't want him to stop. And there is a big difference.
For one thing, I am glad he didn't stop because I need to know he won't, that i can't manipulate him. For better or worse, I need to be reminded of this repeatedly. I need to believe that he does things for me because it is what he wants.
The few times that things have gone this way - it makes me question myself. Why do i do this? Why do i want it? Why is it part of me? Do i put up with the times like earlier in the week because i know that sometimes it will be like the second? Is it because i want to get to the part where we are finished and i can crawl into his arms and he holds me and tells me what a good girl i am? Is it because, no matter how much i wanted it to end, i felt closer and connected and safer and more confident in us, and in myself, for days afterward?
All of those are true, certainly. I know that there was more though. It is too simple to say it is what i agreed to, although that's true. It is what i agreed to. If you strip everything else away, it would come down to what he says goes, but i believe it is really much more complex than that for most people. It's maybe not too simple to say that he wanted it, and i wanted to give that to him. It made me very happy the rest of the week to know I had been able to give him what he wanted.