Mar 132013

What to Do when you make a mistake

During one particular performance in the last couple of years I was too attached to the outcome of a scene/performance that I acted in a way that I’m not terribly proud of. It’s difficult to admit to mistakes, especially when perfectionism is something of struggle, but I think it’s important to talk about times when things don’t go as planned. It’s the best way to make sure that unsafe behavior doesn’t happen again. It’s human to make mistakes, it’s enlightened to try and learn from them.

Going into Iron Slut (run by the oh so fabulous Reid Mihalko) I wasn’t sure exactly what I was getting into. Most of the other people who had participated in it before that I knew were sex performers, while I am someone who expresses sex through kink. I wanted to make sure that the audience understood (and would still be satisfied) even if I didn’t perform a traditional sex act on stage.

Trying to think of a way to “wow” the crowd while respecting my own boundaries, I came up with the idea to use a newly acquired (well, still acquiring) skill of double single tail whips while popping a couple of balloons off a rubber banded dick. Like a kinky circus act. Fantastically fun idea, however it arrived a tad to late for me to actually practice before heading to the event.

I’m confident in my whipping skills, though the double aspect is rather new. I assumed that I would be able to figure it out on the spot (I tend to be fairly good at that).

But when the time came I was dangerously distracted. I can get very single-minded about goals, which is helpful when running a business & detrimental when dealing with a rather sensitive interaction with another human being.

I started off slowly, showing that whipping can be soft and sensual, not just hard and cruel. The balloons were bouncing, everyone was laughing and as I put more and more power into throwing the whips, while not getting the response I wanted (for the balloons to pop) my competitive side came out and in this case is wasn’t good.

Popping the balloons became my entire focus, rather than engaging the audience (who had paid to come to an educational experience) or ensuring the complete safety of my demo model. At the end of my desmonstration, popping those balloons became paramount, even above safety. I was determined to pop that second balloon. My swings started to get wilder and with more force behind them. I did the exact thing that I always warn against in my classes, which is swing from the shoulder for the mere strength of it. Because when you do that, your aim suffers. The human person that I was playing with faded into the background of my mind, and my need to pop the balloon (and therefore complete the task I had set for my performance) was all that was in my focus. As a result, a few stray strikes hit his skin in places that I would usually go to great lengths to avoid.

I’m grateful that I was playing with a really wonderful demo model, someone I’ve known for almost a decade and who trusted my skills. I am grateful that he stood like a rock while I attacked that defiant balloon, and I’m grateful that the audience safe-worded on me to help shake me out of the need of completion. I most especially grateful that he was not actually ‘hurt’ in any way due to my mistaken mindset.

I take the safety of the submissives that I play with very seriously. But I am human, and even though I’ve been doing this full time, for a very long time, I still make mistakes. Ultimately it was not an overly dangerous mistake and the lightly marked demo model felt entirely fine about it. But it was an intensely important reminder for me not to EVER lose focus on the person that I’m playing with, even when there’s a performance aspect of it. And the lesson I hope to share, whether you act out your fantasies at public dungeons or in the privacy of your own homes…. is that dominants & tops need to always be vigilant to be worthy of the trust that is placed in us. Don’t get so attached to the outcome of a scene that you lose track of the journey and of the safety of those that are a part of our fantasies and experiences.

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