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QUESTION: Greetings,

Part 1:
I have been attracted to the power exchange aspects of this lifestyle more so than actual pain, although pain may be enjoyable. However, my only reference is what I have read about and has turned me on rather than any experience at all. I have done some research and have been to a local munch. I was however almost completely turned off by the people I meet there. I think part of it had to do with the fact that I am in my early twenties and everyone was forty or much older. I was stared at by some the ENTIRE time. I was ignored by most. This one man (old enough to be my grandfather) told me while leering that he would love to take me to a play-party. This was my first time at a munch. Is it normal to say these things to someone at a munch? I honestly don't know if all these behaviors where usual for the scene. I did not have a good experience at all. The only saving grace was the Domme in charge who was helpful but kind of scary. She told me about fetlife and a group for 35's and younger. Honestly I am not sure I want to make an account on fetlife (I'm kinda uncomfortable about the idea of it) nor meet people who are even younger and very possibly less mature at another munch. Is this usual? Am I being too sensitive? I did not feel very safe even though it was a public setting. I am doing this alone-one person knew where I was so I could check in with her but she's not into the scene at all. So I really wanted to feel safe. I want this but the "this" I found was off-putting. I do not want to explore my sexuality or parts of it in public or at a party where anyone present can see but was told expressly NOT to meet someone in private. So what do I do? I know thatís a good number of questions but Iím taking a chance and asking them here.

Part 2:
I do not know if I have submissive or dominant tendencies. Or well-I'm going to be as honest as I can about who I am and maybe you can point me in the right direction? I do not find the idea of me controlling someone attractive. I do not like however being told what to do/say/wear/excreta, I will not feel compelled to listen. I do not trust easy, I like having control over my life. It upsets me to have someone in charge of me. And then at the same time part of me is attracted to the idea of someone having enough control over me to make some of my decisions for me without asking. Telling me what to do and not having another option. I just Do Not see it happening. And even less after meeting some "Doms". This one Dom I met there-well me and him almost went head to head and I thought him silly for trying to exert any sort of control over me, or influence me. I am strong willed. I like people being pleased with me but do not want to do anything extra but be myself for that to happen. I found myself not understanding why these subs submitted to these Doms-I did not see any of the Doms there as anything special or worth that sort of trust. And the Doms I am talking about have apparently been doing this for a long time. I know I only just met them for a few hours but I felt no connection to this group of people at all. Is this typical? I am attracted to the information and some articles and things I have read about, but is the reality so different (and I don't mean read fifty shades of grey-I mean some factual things and other's experiences)? If I do not want to submit but the idea of submission brings me comfort-what does that make me? A dominant submissive??

Thank you for your consideration-my appreciation,
Jade

ANSWER: jade you are rather long winded... but it at least gives complete context to your questions.  Let's try and deal with them by your grouping but not necessarily in order presented by importance.

Part 1

First off your friend is like most friends; they love to give advice about things they have absolutely no idea about. The degree to which you take this into account will likely add a bias that will hamper your discovery.  Private is a broad term, a public restaurant, with a quiet alcove can be extremely intimate and private while having the virtue of a public setting. I would say that the consideration on meeting people is "Safe and Sane" not public or private.  ON the age thing, it is a matter of experience.  There are many younger people who have been into the lifestyle for 5, 10 years and many older people who are going through a life change and just stepped into the lifestyle. Although some of us have lived it most of our lives. Do not mistake age for experience, nor is their experience necessarily what you want.  Some people focus on one aspect of this and forget the others.  The broadness of experiences is what you may well be looking for, on the aspect of submitting to some one younger than you... yes that is you being sensitive.  However, do not expect to find a 25 y/o with any meaningful dominance experience or emotional stability to be an effective and (caring) dom.  People up to the age of 35 tend to be more focused on their own genitals than others experiences.

Part 2

A clear test is your second sentence... having no interest in dominating someone clearly states you are not a switch or domme.  Likely the effort would be beyond you and not something you would enjoy but likely do to satisfy another person.  However, the stubborn independence is another thing which tends to state you may well be more vanilla than you think.  This is okay, some people like the kinky sex but not the "full-lifestyle" experience.  To each his/her own. Being strong willed may actually be a also a defense mechanism... I have had many a sub who only submitted when she thought the dominant was worthy.   It adds value to the individual, and makes for a real challenge.  NO you are not a dominant-submissive, you are an independent soul who will only submit to a worthy dom.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: I must say, your first sentence had me chuckling, especially as I am usually a quiet person. I never considered "safe and sane" and that helps. I think the thing that turned me off was that I was never asked permission by the Dom I nearly had an argument with for him to tell me what to do. I also think I expected perfect/ideal Dom/mes, and not human ones. I did not take into account experience does not correlate with age. However, that raises the question for me-how do I tell a Dom/me (I am bisexual, but lean towards men)is worthy? Do I look for the same things I would in a "vanilla" man/woman? Are there certain questions I can ask? Or is it just follow your gut? What are some warning signs that I should look for to stay away from someone (as I am a novice)? Or what qualities bespeak of a "good" Dom/me? I know that asking around is something I should do, as well as watching them maybe do a scene, but I tend to trust myself more than a stranger's words.

Thank you,
Jade

P.S. I sincerely appreciate the reassurance of your last sentence.

Answer
jade:

Thanks for the insight again, and the fact I made you chuckle is a plus.  Let me work backwards, yes words have a way of masking reality.  There are few people who will sand behind their words with any sense of integrity.  It is a shame in today's world that trust has been eroded by the callous and thoughtless elf interest of so many.  A quick buck, getting ones rocks off, or the tacit pleasure without sense of any commitment.  I find the word sorely  lacking today is is honour.  I guess this is the crux of both of our problems.  People today will sell their honour and dignity for a handful of beans; hoping one is magical... when magic (like unicorns) have left this world forever.

The qualities of a good dom/me is very much a personal perspective and it will depend on what you need, desire and have to have as a minimum in order to trust and eventually obey.  In your shoes I would list those traits that you feel are the strongest and most important.  Rate them on a scale of 1 to 10 (any more than 10 and it becomes unmanageable), and I would suggest even trying to limit them to 5.  Do it in a grid across the top and down a side.  Then decide in combination which ones would be important.  This will let you have a feel for a mufti-dimensional personality rather than a flat one.  It will also be better for you to fit them into the perspective that is good for you.  After all one type of person may be too limiting, and close you off to options.

Do not put HONESTY as one of your categories. It should be an absolute, either people are honest or not, if they are not, discard them they are not worth your time.  This is not because we can not work with liars, it is because dishonest people can never be trusted.  And in this lifestyle more than any other relationship trust is an absolute requirement.

So ask probing questions, have deep and lengthy conversations with people find out where their interests and kink lays; see if it matches to yours and if there is room for overlap. While it seems I am say DON NOT go with your gut; in fact all I am saying is make an informed decision based on the facts; but if your gut is screaming "this is wrong" then it probably is and trust it.  However, do not trust your glands, pheromones and hormones have gotten many people in dreadful situations, remember the prettiest boy/girl was someone's "most hated bitch/prick" in the past and is a good lay worth it.

The other thing you can do is simply ask for references.  Most serious dom/mes with experience have had a number of slaves in the past.  Let's be honest lifers are not the norm in this lifestyle... LTR is not like until Death Do Us Part, the difference it is easier than in a common law or civil divorce.  Now they do occur but I would suggest even rarer than long term marriages in the vanilla world.  So the good ones will have references for you to use.  And munches work... at least you know the people have been involved in the "institutions" of the lifestyle not just peeking at dirty pictures online.

I hope this helps.  

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Aramock Nanuck

Expertise

I will answer any questions concern the lifestyle and may annoy a few because I do dive into the history and psychology of this lifestyle in many of my answers. I have a partner a Femdom Mistress who shares my experiences and assets, as I hers. Also belonging to a couple groups in Europa and Asia. Traveling frequently between the continents. We tend to share information and discuss many of the topics frequently. I will focus on the core items around, training and relationship management for those that are interested.

Experience

I have been involved in the lifestyle since being introduced to it by my father at the age of 13. He was a master in the 50's to 80's but predated the popularity of Gor, and was Pharaonic in nature. I owned my own slaves since my early 20's. I have usually been part of a poly household. For about 6 years three of us ran a BDSM club in Prague until it was "acquired" by the Russian "businessmen". I do not hold any moral taboos about this lifestyle and at one time or another have experience or seen everything imaginable. It is in this absence of mrals that principles, protocols and personal honour must determine the worth of an individual. It is their clear and unwavering adherence to these ethics that make for stauncher things than those which some observance by mere lip service to common morals. When men/women of honour lead, then they do so without malice, without negativity and without thought of personal gain. It only then that they truly attain Dominon over others. Therefore in mastery comes a devotion to duty, and the existence, needs and desires of others that exceeds the submission mere slaves give to the Dominant. A Dominant one must lead, govern, educate and enrich the lives of subjects beign ruled... for otherwise they are but a sycophant and a tyrant. Hedonism and narcissism plays no part in this, it is an apparition that forms from acts done at much higher levels of meaning that mere morally bound persons can not see.

Organizations
I belong to a number of local clubs, and a loose association (not formal) of about 25 masters and mistresses here in Western Europe and Asia who share experiences, training and some exchange trade assets.

Publications
I have not published on BDSM under my name, but contribute frequently to forums. I am consolidating my writings slowly on DarkCastleSin.org for any that are interested in reading.

Education/Credentials
Not relevant although I do have a DCS and DT but I am not Christian so have no moral dilemmas with this lifestyle.

Awards and Honors
Not applicable here, come on in our lifestyle these do not exist but should. When was the last time we had public awards for Worlds Darkest Sadist, World's Most Gifted Shibaru Artist, Worlds Most Diligent Mentor, World's Most Gifted Enthusiast,

Past/Present Clients
Not relevant; private consults remain so.

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