My Fetishes VI: Diaphanous Clothing

I realized I hadn’t added a post about my own fetishes in almost 3 years !!

Diaphanous means sheer, see-through, and I find it both arousing to see others wear this kind of clothing and also wear it myself.

I find it erotic for a variety of reasons. One, it appeals to voyeurist/exhibitionist desires. Two, I find that it’s often more erotic than a fully nude person because you’re being granted visual access — but not complete access; like a tease. Three, you’re not really supposed to see through clothing, are you? So is it an accident? Am I not supposed to look?

Here are some images I find sexy:

(c) Hayley’s Secrets
(c) unknown
(c) Steven Meisel for Vogue Magazine
(c) unknown
(c) unknown. Some paparazzi guy.
(c) MrMarshallMan

(It’s difficult to find sexy photos of men in see-through clothing !)

Femme Exploration

If you’re a man who is interested in exploring your “feminine” or “femme” side you may feel embarrassed or ashamed. Though it’s common to feel this way, you don’t have to. You can release the fear or shame you carry about exploring yourself as a whole human being.

Why do you feel so embarrassed or ashamed? One reason stems from the way men are socialized. Men are taught to believe that comparisons to women — whether in the tone or cadence of their voice, body shape, clothing preference, or mannerisms —  are emasculating and ultimately an indicator of their lack of authenticity and value as a man and person. In short: if you are in any way like a woman, you are defective; you aren’t “man enough”.

I’m here to tell you: none of it is true. You have been lied to.

You may feel that the entirety of the construct of “male” doesn’t apply to you. Or maybe just some of it. You may feel that you’d prefer to act or dress differently. Even if only on special occasions. You might want to have different interests and hobbies. Express your emotions freely. But you feel trapped by the expectation that’s been created for you.

Know this: the template that men are assigned to is only someone’s idea about who they think you should be. And it is likely in some way rooted in their need to control the existence of others to compensate for the fears they have about their own. The great news? You don’t need to let someone else’s fears become yours too and rule your life.

So you think you’d like to explore your femme self but you have some apprehensions. You don’t know where to start. You’re afraid you might be judged. You feel like you might not relate to what you see other men do, so you think that maybe it’s not your thing.

If you would like to explore these parts of yourself with someone you can feel safe with, I welcome you. You are free to be who you are without fear that you will be mocked or judged. In fact, I explicitly state under femme/feminization on my interests page that, unlike the typical approach to “feminization”, I don’t do any femme play as a form of humiliation. Aside from my not seeing femme as anything to be degraded for, but as one way of being beautiful and sexy, I find it antithetical to Female Dominance.

I’m highly competent with this idea we call “gender” and the way in which it can be expressed. I have spent a lot of time both working with people who have unconventional ideas about their gender or don’t feel the identity they’ve been assigned applies to them, to having done a lot of thinking about the phenomenological and epistemological aspects of identity, including gender and sexuality, and how I personally feel about and relate to them.

My awareness extends from the commonly-understood constructs of “male”, “female”, “masculine”, “feminine”, “androgynous”, etc.; to the fusion of seemingly contradictory concepts like “boydyke” or “girlfag”; to gender not actually being a real thing.

If you see how others express their “feminine” or “femme” selves and you feel alienated, it’s important to know that “femme” is a range of expression. It doesn’t have to be done in stereotypical ways or with hyperfeminine clothing, as is commonly depicted in BDSM.

This means it doesn’t have to be:

  • You assuming a female persona. That is: men can wear lingerie, be sexy, be slutty, and NOT have to become “women” to do it. You can retain your identity as a male person and wear panties, stockings, bra, makeup, eyelashes, heels, etc. (Though it’s okay if you do want to be your “female” self.)
  • Include anything pink. Love red? White? Black? Blue? Gold? Your expression of femme can be any color you like.
  • Include anything frilly, lacey, with ribbons, or otherwise “cutesy”. This is what I mean by “hyperfeminine”. It sort of like taking stereotypically girly things and turning it up to 13. The effect is you looking like a doll or child or wedding cake. Again, if you genuinely like this, wonderful, but it’s not necessarily what femme looks or feels like to everyone. (In fact, it doesn’t for the vast majority of femme/female-identified people.)
  • A “full transformation”. Though some people want to spend hours transforming their appearance from head to toe, others just want to put on lipstick or panties or heels.

Here’s some images that depict a range of femme expression by men (or at least people who were likely assigned male at birth):

Expressing yourself in a femme way also doesn’t mean:

  • You’re confused about your identity as a man
  • You’re a “sissy”
  • You’re really a woman
  • You’re gay (panties or heels don’t make you gay, they make you pretty)
  • You’re “weak”
  • You deserve ridicule

How you explore your femme side can be as lighthearted or as deep as you want it to be. It can be the entire focus of our session or it can be almost a “non-issue”, like your hair or eye color. This means your femme expression can range from highly eroticized (you sexy slut in your pretty panties and garter belt) to devoid of intentional eroticism (you’re wearing panties, sure, but this is really about me tying you down until you can’t move a muscle).

Whatever feels good, I’d love to facilitate an experience for you!

MistressTissa_PBPanties

Who Really Has The Power?

When speaking of power exchange relationships in BDSM, such as Dominance/submission (“D/s”), you may occasionally hear some people claim, “it’s the sub who truly holds the power.” Often this is followed with the assertion that submission is a “gift”. While there is truth to this, it’s not the whole truth.

The first error is the implication that power is held by one person: the sub. Just like outside of our kinky play, everyone has power. It’s just up to you whether you’re going to exercise it or give it up.

So, while the submissive does in fact hold power, so does the Dominant. Both roles involve having and expressing power. The sub can be controlled only as much as they allow and the Domme will control only as much as they are willing.

This is a symbiotic relationship. It’s characterized by interdependence. One is defined by the existence of the other.

In other words: while it’s true that without a sub the Domme has no one to control, it’s also true that without a Domme the sub has no one to be controlled by. They are both receiving benefits from — and giving “gifts” to — one another.

Interview with Coalition Radio

On Friday the 16th, I was interviewed by Pat of Coalition Radio. In the interview, I discuss the SESTA bill. I touch on various related issues, but focus on what I believe are the psychosocial origins of the legislation.

You can listen here:

(This is an hour-long interview. Those who have attention issues [raises hand] may find it more palatable to listen to it in smaller chunks.)

Shaming Dominant Women Who Submit

There is a faction of men, and some women, who are very outspoken about their contempt for Dominant Women who enjoy submission. I have seen them stalk and harass such women, proclaiming, “She’s not a REAL Domme! She submits!” Aside from looking like a troll, there’s a clear lack of understanding about power exchange as it exists outside of their porn clips and fetish fantasies, as well as some possible double-standards and hidden misogyny. Let Me attempt to bring these people into the real world.

First of all, I want to say that I do not trust ANY Dominant — female, male, or otherwise — who claims to have never submitted and does not have an interest to do so. To Me, it’s a big ol’ red flag. It’s kinda like when you have a supervisor who has never done your job and has no interest in learning what you do, but they are happy to act like an authority about it and boss you around. Nobody likes these kind of people.

I believe that to be an effective and great Dominant, you need to experience submission. What does giving up power mean, how much are you willing to give, under what conditions are you able to let go, how do you feel and react when being given an order, what goes through your mind when you are pushed, and so on. This is important because having an experience as a submissive increases your empathy for submissives.

Likewise, to be a great top you need to understand what it means to bottom. If you want to use an implement on someone, you should know what it feels like to receive that implement (anatomical limitations aside). If you don’t understand the perspective of the person who is bottoming, your knowledge will be limited to what you can imagine their perspective being like. And, personally, despite My rich imagination, I can tell you that there really is no substitute for actually feeling a single tail yourself.

“But how can a woman say She’s Dominant but also be willing to submit? Dominant Women don’t submit! It’s against their nature! It invalidates Their Holy Dommliness!”

Here’s the reality: dominant men can kneel before Me, submit to My power for one, two, three or more hours, and at the conclusion of our scene, guess what? They get up off their knees and continue their lives as dominant men. Likewise, a Domme can relinquish control to another…and when She stops relinquishing that control, She’s still Dominant. People, like power, are things whose expression is multi-layered and dynamic.

One way power can be expressed is through an intrinsically “dominant” personality. You may have heard of “type A” personalities. These are dominant types. Their brain is wired in such a way that they are naturally take-charge people. They feel more comfortable in leadership roles, and being assertive and confrontational is usually easier for them.

Another way power is expressed is by making a conscious choice to express it in a given situation. If one makes a decision to take the advice of their doctor and have the surgery, this is actually an act of submission! However, agreeing to let someone else operate on you does not change your underlying personality — whether dominant, submissive, etc. — before, during, or after the procedure.

Also, like many men, women usually have requirements before they’ll agree to offer their submission. It might be only given during certain activities, definitely not during other activities, and there might even be conditions to “inspire” submission, without which they don’t feel the desire or ability to do so in the first place. Sometimes it’s a person’s sex or gender, sometimes their age or ethnicity, sometimes it’s physique or clothing, sometimes it’s money. I have heard several men tell Me that beauty inspires submission in them. Or height. Or intelligence. Or big tits. Or bitchiness. Or very high heels. Dommes who submit are pretty much guaranteed to have their own versions of these things. It’s all personal and valid.

If you’re asking yourself, “Why in the world would someone who is Dominant even feel a desire to submit in the first place? Isn’t that exactly what Dominant people don’t want to do?”  I think one reason why people feel this way is because they are, probably unconsciously, associating submission with weakness, humiliation, or because it’s a sign that someone is actually unable to effectively dominate. None of these are true.

Imagine a dominant male CEO who is responsible for leading his company and the people in it every flipping day. He’s very good at this, but it’s still a lot of pressure and it can wear a person out. Most people will want to find ways to manage the stress that is generated. We all tend to do this naturally; it’s part of our inclination to homeostasis. The more “on” and “in control” a person has to be in their lives, they more they might feel a need to do the opposite to find their equilibrium. (The inverse can be true for people in positions in which they lack power.) This is not weakness. It’s a function of emotional health. So, the CEO might find his equilibrium by going sailing, gambling at a casino, or visiting a Dominatrix.

It’s the same for a Domme. She might spend all week controlling Her subs’ every move; tying them down and doing all sorts of things to them “without their consent” and on the weekend think, “All these guys seemed so at peace afterward. I want to know what it’s like to be tied down and have things done to Me ‘against My will’. I want to take a break and give someone else the power to make the decisions.” And so, like the always-in-control CEO, She decides to release some pressure by situationally submitting to another.

The thing about this that shamers don’t seem to understand or care about is: the rope that ties Her down or the thing that does whatever to Her doesn’t magically change Her desire, ability, or wiring to be Dominant anymore than the CEO who gets on his knees and licks the bottom of My shiny black boots. These are just experiences people are having. It doesn’t fundamentally change who they are. (Well, it could have an effect on one’s consciousness and self-concept which can change over time, but that’s for another article.)

People also can submit just for fun. I mean, some of you do it for that reason, right? You’re not hardcore, “lifestyle” slaves, you just want to negotiate some activities and then let your Dominant make the decisions about what they look like for a couple hours. You enjoy the mystery, the suspense, even the “game”. It’s sexy. It’s a good time. Why would that be any different for a Domme?

Lastly, if a woman is really Dominant, She’s going to do whatever the hell She wants, anyway — whether someone thinks it’s okay or not. A person’s ignorance won’t change that, and any unexamined beliefs regarding women, dominance, submission, and how they relate to that person’s fantasies about those things are theirs to own and don’t necessarily have any bearing on reality. So stop shaming Dominant Women who submit.

 

Politics and FemDom

Since I was a child, I have been something of an activist. My main form of activism has been grassroots education. This means that I informally try to educate people. As in, I’m not actually a Teacher, but I try to teach. I (usually) don’t hold formal classrooms, I just “set-up shop” wherever.

One thing I tend to be concerned with is social issues and the politics around them. Some people don’t like to discuss politics. It makes them uncomfortable. I respect a person’s desire to bow out of things that make them uncomfortable, but I also like to ask people to think about how they are effected by such a decision.

One issue that occurs with education is that not everyone welcomes it. (*laugh*) It’s common that when you criticize some harmful idea that someone has, the person holding it will retaliate. (People who claim to not hold it sometimes retaliate, too.) Usually it’s in the form of verbal abuse, but also sometimes going so far as to make and carry out threats against you. Just because you’re talking about how something is shitty and hurts people in this world.

Recently, I had a new retaliation. Someone on Twitter said I was just “virtue signaling”. This means I like to grandstand My stance on something, post little pictures in support of things, but that I don’t actually do anything about them. Clearly, it’s meant to insult.

This was a first for Me. This person didn’t know Me well enough to make such a statement, and to know that I do more than just “talk” (not that talking can’t be valuable to an audience who remains in the dark), so it didn’t mean anything to Me, but it also showed how attempts to discuss things like sexism, homophobia, racism, transphobia,  etc, will attract misunderstanding.

Just before I began writing this, I was asked why I talk shit about men and that maybe I shouldn’t do that. This was obviously inspired by some of the things I’ve said on Twitter, where there is a literal sea of sexism waiting to drown you. (Actually, the sea is everywhere for women, if she doesn’t learn to keep her head up.) Twitter is actually a fantastic platform to share ideas (even if only 140 characters at a time). You can very quickly be “broadcasted” to millions of people. This can be helpful to get your ideas to a larger audience and have them think more critically about something, like sexism, for example.

So, do I hate men? Nothing is further from the truth.

First, I need to provide you with a basic keymap to My social commentary about this particular topic:

Men” = Patriarchal male. Note capital M to communicate that I’m talking about a particular kind of male.

Dude“, “Bro“, “Guys” = a subset of Patriarchal Men. Usually the types who are especially dumb, cocky, and like to mansplain.

men” = men without any cultural implications (e.g. their values, behavior). men are not inherently a problem.

There is a similar keymap for other topics I enjoy thinking about and discussing where I capitalize the culture and keep the people themselves lower case. Such as “White” and “white”. There is White culture, which actually contains many subcultures and practices which are not problematic but also some which are truly reprehensible, and there are also white people, who are not inherently anything. There are many other examples.

Anyway, this is a shorthand way of making a distinction between a human being and their culture. It’s not an original idea. You will see it used in other social-political critique/critical thinking/philosophy type places.

So, how do I feel about men? I’m pretty heavily into them. They’re nearly all of the people I play with (and therefore like). They’re nearly all of whom I have dated and partnered with in My life. Now, how do I feel about Men? Well, how do you think I feel about someone who believes themselves to be inherently superior to women? And who believes they should control how we think, feel, behave, dress, and reproduce? Just because they are men?

You may be wondering: do I ever criticize women? Absolutely. There are Patriarchal Women. I don’t like them either. However, because I’m a Dominant Women, My focus is on criticizing the majority of those who drive the Patriarchy (Men), a system which essentially loathes Women like Me. (I pretty heavily criticize Patriarchal Women in other spaces. Trust Me.)

Clearer now?

Also: When it comes to social/political commentary the rule of thumb is that if someone is saying something that does not apply to you personally, then they are talking about someone else.

Example: “Men need to stop trying to tell women that they can’t have abortions.”

If you see a statement like this, the first question to ask yourself is: Does this apply to you? Are you a man who believes that women should not be the ones who choose whether or not they must go through with a pregnancy? If you are one of those Men, then this person is talking about you. If you are not one of these Men, this person is not talking about you. Therefore, instead of becoming defensive, try to understand that you are not their intended audience and try to see the value in their perspective.

I feel that education is important work. As a Dominant Woman, the Patriarchy is of particular interest to Me. Since most of the people I play with express and explore very non-Patriarchal selves, it should be of interest to you, too. The Patriarchy is the very thing that causes men to feel shame about wanting to dress in “women’s” clothes, wanting to submit to a woman, wanting to be fucked in the ass, that being a “sensitive” and “caring” person makes you a “wimp” and “pussy” (note the misogyny in that word choice), and wanting to be touched and loved and accepted for who they really are.

So, when I criticize the Patriarchy, I’m actually not just doing it to liberate women, I’m doing it to liberate men, too.

McKink not served here

Have you had an experience which feels like you’re just gone through a fast food drive-through window? “How may I dominate you today, sir?” Where you provided your order to a “Dominant” and She delivered it up blandly, predictably, and with a feeling like She’s just there for the paycheck? Almost as if you’re in on some kind of BDSM conveyor belt?

MistressTissa_NoMcKink.gif

Sorry, no “McKink” is practiced here!

My approach is more like fine dining: quality ingredients, artisanally crafted, and with great attention to our experience. I am an ethical person and have high standards and like what I do to reflect that. I not only prefer to be authentic, sincere, and conscious in My practice, I’m unhappy if I’m not.

All sessions are thoughtfully considered to reflect our mutual interests & develop from our unique energetic chemistry. While I may make loose plans for our time together, to ensure both our needs get met, I don’t enjoy scripts. (This is why scripted scenes are a limit for Me.) I prefer to let the moment dictate what best fits the space. What determines that is how I react to you and how you react to Me.

What do I mean when I talk about “conscious in My practice”? I like to think of what I do as “conscious kink”. This isn’t just about going through the motions, it’s about awareness and acting deliberately. While you can certainly approach kink as just a place to get an itch scratched, it can also have an underlying meaning, value, and a potential for growth, whether I’ve got you tied up, pinned to the ground, am humiliating you, and am testing your limits with My cane. My desire is that you leave Me better than when you came to Me, and sessions with Me will reflect that desire. “McKink” is just delivering a “cheap”, cookie-cutter product without any concern for any of this.

So, why settle for “fast food” when you can get more?

Article: “The Thrilling, Messy Lives of New York’s Freelance Dominatrices”

I find most of this article problematic, but there is one part I did very much appreciate.

What I had issue with were that the examples they use of “freelance” (i.e. independent) Dominatrices are kind of odd, and ironically paint them (Us?) in an unprofessional light. The two Dommes they selected to represent New York’s independent were portrayed in a very unflattering way — one of which is running a Cyrano-de-Bergerac-esque operation. I can’t help but wonder if this was a ploy to draw business to houses by making independents look, well, “messy” —  and even dangerous.

The part I did like discusses the pathologization of kink:

The American Psychological Association defines a mental disorder as a “clinically significant behavior” associated with “present distress, disability, or a significant increased risk of suffering.” The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, a compendium of these disorders, is the text American psychologists use to diagnose patients.When the DSM was first published in 1952, it included “sexual deviation”—a category that included transvestism, pedophilia, homosexuality, fetishism, and sexual sadism. The second edition included masochism. The all-encompassing term was changed to the less-pejorative “paraphilias” in the third edition. When the fifth edition comes out in May, people who practice BDSM and feel distress about it will have a “paraphilic disorder.”This distresses the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom, an advocacy group which considers DSM revision a “key project.” “We want to make sure that distress from society doesn’t mean a mental disorder,” says National Coalition of Sexual Freedom spokeswoman Susan Wright.

The DSM listed homosexuality as a sexual disorder until 1973, when extensive empirical evidence concluded that homosexuals performed no differently on psychological tests than their straight counterparts. Five different studies conducted on masochists since 1977 point to high functioning—measured by high educational level, income and occupational status—compared to the general population. Furthermore, other studies show there is no link between masochism and past abuse. Why should one atypical orientation be treated differently than another?

Charles Moser, a California researcher who asks exactly that, has emerged as the psychologist most active in advocating for BDSM’s removal from the manual. In an article co-authored with Peggy Kleinplatz this year, he wrote: “The situation of the Paraphilias at present parallels that of homosexuality in the early 1970s. Without the support or political astuteness of those who fought for the removal of homosexuality, the Paraphilias continue to be listed in the DSM.” No characteristic unifies paraphiliacs other than their sexual interests, he points out, just as no single trait is shared by all homosexuals besides same-sex attraction.

On the other hand, Richard Krueger, a Columbia University researcher who was part of the workgroup that authors the paraphilias section, is among those favoring retention. He cites people like Richard Benjamin who asphyxiate for sexual excitement: “There are people who hang themselves, and we felt universally that dying that way is very different from accidentally hanging yourself in the process of becoming sexually excited.” Indeed, a study conducted in 1972 found 50 people died each year in the United States from this practice. Thus the reasoning: Homosexuality isn’t innately dangerous; some forms of masochism are.

How dangerous is BDSM? “It is said that the most common reason for an emergency room visit in New York City on Sunday mornings is a hand laceration from cutting a bagel,” Moser says. “I can find essentially no emergency room visits related to S&M injuries in the professional literature. So if danger or injury is your criteria, then cutting a bagel is the sign of a mental disorder, and S&M is healthy.”

One thing Moser and Krueger agree on is the lack of studies on BDSM. Michael W. Wiederman’s 2003 article “Paraphilia and Fetishism,” which appeared in the Family Journal, argues that this lack of research could stem from the misconception that sexuality researchers study topics of personal relevance which makes them want to avoid taboo subjects. Meg Kaplan, a psychologist who also happens to be Krueger’s wife, says she frequently receives referrals from other doctors who are either unable or unwilling to discuss BDSM fantasies with clients.

“There’s very little money for studying typical sexual behavior, nevermind atypical sexual behavior,” Kaplan says.

[Source: http://www.theatlantic.com/sexes/archive/2013/04/the-thrilling-messy-lives-of-new-yorks-freelance-dominatrices/274582/]

Why I don’t do “feminization” as a form of humiliation

Many Dommes indicate “feminization” as an activity they offer. It’s popular. A lot of men are interested in it. Usually it’s cis men, but I have known trans men who enjoy it. Also, usually straight men, but sometimes queer, bi, or gay men, too. (I’m not talking about trans women. Trans women are women, not “men in dresses”.)

I enjoy and happily offer it to anyone who is interested. However, I don’t like to call it “feminization”, I prefer to call it “femme”*. Cultural implications aside, it sounds more elegant and, well, sexier.

Now, what I’ve noticed and find interesting about “feminization” is that it is usually fetishized and framed as an expression of humiliation.

Exactly how is it humiliating to be put in “women’s” clothing or lingerie?

If this were MaleDom I could understand this type of play, but FemDom? It makes no sense.

Why it’s even thought of as humiliating in the first place is because men are taught to feel emasculated by comparisons to women. So, if you dress like one? Well, shame on you. You’re not a real man; you’re a “sissy” and a “faggot”.

While I understand how this is erotic for some people, the basis for it is rooted in misogyny (and homophobia). You can’t be shamed for wearing something assigned to women unless there is something shameful about being a woman. So, when Dommes do this type of play, who are almost always femme themselves, it’s ironic.

Iggy_NoShame

(Photo: Mikael Jansson. Graphic: Have a Gay Day, Facebook group.)

If a submissive tells Me they like to be humiliated, I ask them in what ways. If they say they like to be “feminized”, I tell them I’m not the Domme for them. I don’t even want to PRETEND I think it’s humiliating. Why would I when it’s how I love to dress Myself? It seems that if I went along with even the fantasy that putting a man in “women’s” clothing is embarrassing or damaging I would be insulting Myself in the process. That doesn’t seem very Dominant to Me.

Why do I do it, then? Because putting men in beautiful panties, garter belts, stockings, heels, sexy dresses, and makeup is fun and sexy. I like to do it because I find it genuinely enjoyable. Why should only women enjoy silky or lacy lingerie?

Also, I love blending butch and femme together. Like the sexy Pavel Petel below:

leatherdaddyinlingerie

(https://pavel-petel.tumblr.com/)

So, if you come to Me and want to do femme play, My goal is to to offer a space in which you can be yourself, explore or develop your femme and/or feminine side, feel sexy, be treated like a “woman” (if that’s what you want to experience), and most of all to feel good and have fun — not to try to embarrass you for it.

*“Femme”, for those who don’t know, is a concept that originates from queer communities and its intent is to respect “gender” variance. It’s complement is “butch”. Unlike heteronormative culture, these terms acknowledge that people can have particular bodies and sexual identities and also have a so-called “non-congruent” gender presentation. This means you can have a penis, identify as a male, and be “femme”. Likewise, you have a vagina, identify as female, and be “butch”. This doesn’t inherently say anything about your sexuality. Anyone can be “femme”, “butch”, a combination of both, and/or something else. Using “femme” instead of “feminization”, for me, acknowledges this cultural value and separates the activity from its misogynistic associations.