If someone asked me, I would say that I don’t enjoy watching or being watched in a sexual sense. I am not an exhibitionist and I am not a voyeur, and yet, there is something about it that does appeal to me. HL watches me all the time. It is his thing and I wrote about that last week in my Monochromatic post. The picture above is another example of an incident when he was snapping away and I was unaware. It was a bit of an issue for me when we first met and I felt the need to manage the parts of me he saw, but we are so far beyond that now; the intimacy between us and the sort of relationship we have means that I have got used to being his.
Under his gaze
Being his does make a difference. He can ask me to undress for him when it suits him. He can stop me as I am getting changed and tell me to do something, or simply to pause while he looks at me. He makes it obvious what he is doing and the intimate inspections which often begin our scenes and set the tone are an extreme version of this. This isn’t really voyeurism as I am fully aware of what he is doing, but the reason behind it has come from the fact that he has been watching me, and something in his head has made him take the feelings he has and shift them to the next level.
I sometimes make a fuss of this but actually I like it. In fact, it forms part of the dance that we do around each other by sharing the way we are feeling and drawing the other into feeling the same. So while being watched on its own doesn’t send a thrill through me, the fact that it leads to something else does. It works to keep the heat there, the sexual charge, the feeling that I am wanted and desired. So ultimately, I do enjoy the role that it plays in our relationship.
Watching others isn’t something that I do either. I am not really a visual person in that sense, so if I am watching it tends to be from a place of interest rather than sexual arousal. I like to see how others do things and I am interested in seeing the connection between people. I have been disappointed when we were at venues where people were playing. To me, the connection between HL and I feels tangible and I had hoped that this would come across when watching others play. I am not saying for one moment that the people participating didn’t feel that sort of connection to each other, but it wasn’t certainly wasn’t visibly obvious to me.
This could be to do with the venue. If I were to watch someone in a more private setting where it was quieter and more intimate, then perhaps it would be different. This is something that I would like to do. Clearly the opportunity would need to present itself but that being said, I think if it did, I might find it had a different effect on me that the previous play I have witnessed. For me, it all begins with my thoughts so the relationship between the participants is always my focus, rather than what they are actually doing. It is about the effect that is has on each of them and I think that is what would lay the ground for me to be drawn in.
I have also been thinking about being watched by others. As I have said I am not an exhibitionist, so the thrill isn’t naturally there for the thought of being observed; however, being the exhibit is quite something else for me. My kink is rooted in erotic humiliation and shame at wanting the things that I do, so for that to become something which is exposed to others will push me deep into my submissive space. Although it is hard to cope with, the cognitive dissonance that it creates for me means that I slip into a place where I can become what he needs me to be.
I realise that this sounds like an irony because on one hand I am saying I don’t want to do these things and on the other I am saying that it really turns me on when he makes me. This stems from the fact that as person I am very self-conscious and I control that by managing my emotions and regulating them, my actions and my behaviour. To have that control slowly taken away from me, so that I let go bit by bit, is almost intoxication in terms of the sense of freedom and abandon that it brings.
The Fantasy Observer
Until now this has been something which has only been explored with HL, but if I think about him exposing me for what I truly am to others, that adds yet another layer. Our online life means that sometimes there are opportunities for things which will further this and we have played around with that a little. Another thing we have done is to explore through role-play and the use of narrative, so that we can try out things in fantasy which we can’t necessarily do in real life.
This has been an interesting experiment and the time to think and explore my thoughts on it during lockdown has left me feeling much closer to being able to act on some of these fantasies. The idea of being almost like a third party to the discussions taking place, and being spoken about as if I am not there, is particular arousing. Feeling depersonalised in that sense combines with the anguish of being exposed as the needy greedy person I become sexually, and I am forced to give up the part of myself that holds me back and regulates me.
Candaulism, or candaulesism, is a paraphilic sexual practice or fantasy in which one person (usually a man) exposes his (usually female) partner, or images of her, to other people for their voyeuristic pleasure. Candaulism is also associated with voyeurism and exhibitionism.Wikipedia
If I were going to label my kink, it would definitely fit better under candaulism rather than voyeurism, and I have written a longer piece, Candaulism ~ Being an Exhibit, where I have explored this further. Essentially, being the exhibit is at the root of what is erotic for me, but within our dynamic that comes about because HL is more of a voyeur and an exhibitionist. Within any relationship, especially a power exchange, the desire to meet the needs of the other can mean that often what one party does sparks, something within the other.