I have been spending a lot of time this week reading feminist blogs. I learn a lot while doing so but it is a depressing pastime. I view it a bit like lifting weights - not much fun, but useful as self improvement. The not much fun part comes from reading about how terrible society is to women and how awful men are. The really not fun part comes when I learn something totally new and end up realizing I have been doing it wrong all these years. It is good for me to understand the world more completely but I should probably take it in small doses.
The blog I have been reading the most had a really interesting (and highly disturbing, to me) post on BDSM with the author talking about an experience she had that she absolutely loved. It involved her being bitten, pinched, punched, whipped, and tied to a wooden cross and it was apparently the height of ecstasy. I can't fathom that personally but I did find her descriptions of dominant and submissive behaviour fascinating. While the extremes BDSM enthusiasts go to is quite beyond me I completely get the appeal of being submissive in a sexual situation. Being able to completely let go of responsibility for direction and simply live entirely in the moment without responsibility or the burden of leadership sounds hot indeed. The reverse situation where I am barking orders and expecting unwavering obedience doesn't hold any appeal; I suppose I could do it but I don't particularly want to.
That tendency for me is interesting because it appears in the rest of my life too. I am a homemaker married to someone who has big career aspirations and wants to get out there and do things so I tend to follow more than lead. I remember the first time I flat out told Wendy how things were going to be and the people around us were pretty taken aback. Everyone was used to me saying "Sure, whatever you want, I don't care either way." to most decisions and when I put my foot down it was a bit of a shock. We were moving into our first apartment together and I simply refused to use the futon we had at the old place; I told her flat out that I hated that piece of crap and I wasn't going to have a shitty couch that turned into a shitty bed. It is funny how small and random things like that can stand out as being key points in a relationship.
I wonder very much how well other people who see us as a couple could predict this sort of thing. If you saw us at a party you would probably see Wendy in a corner being silent or chatting with a single person while I stood in the centre of everything ranting loudly about something or other and challenging everyone to prove me wrong. After knowing us for awhile I figure people would be able to pick out our dynamic but I don't really know; perhaps only those who are closest to us really see how things work and the rest assume the loud guy is the one in charge.