Toyland

Since I'm writing this on Christmas, the title seemed appropriate.

I've been thinking a lot this week about different implements and the images or feelings they evoke. In my mind, there are some that are very traditionally "domestic discipline" types of implements, and some that I could only put in the "S&M" category — they "feel" more like a sexualized, eroticized implement, to me, and I don't understand their appeal. Let me explain …

Last week I met with a man for what was supposed to be a discipline session.  Hindsight being 20-20, I can tell you that there was a LOT that was wrong with this whole arrangement. M and I are still together — though separated by about a 9 hour drive right now that neither of us has either the time or money to make. The last two months feel like years to me, and my missing him was starting to feel like it was taking over my life. Couple this with a desire to really get control of the things I eat — because my health issues require it right now — and I talked to M about the possibility of my meeting someone else *strictly* for discipline. He was supportive, and trusting, and with his blessing I moved forward.

I began talking, again, to a man I'd been communicating with at the same time that I met M. I told him about my situation and he agreed to help — he wrote to me about how important "mentoring" is to him and how he could help me, etc. Some things were not gelling very well. For instance, we didn't talk on the phone except for once or twice when he called me for a very short "phone spanking." Emails are great, but I also need conversation in order to feel completely comfortable with someone. I ignored this, though. There were other things, all of which I explained away to myself or just let go because I figured since this was "discipline only," we didn't really need to build rapport and friendship. I have been doing TTWD for far too long to have told myself this, but … there ya go.

Some bad behavior on my part led us to decide to meet — for the first time — and have a pretty intense disciplinary session. There's more I could and should say about what happened that day, but I want to just focus on my original topic — especially since I've been too hurt to even put this whole thing into words. Anyway, we started with a hand-spanking and then he bent me over the bed for "the slipper." OK, never having been spanked with a slipper before maybe I'm not the one to judge, but I always saw in videos or imagined in my head that the actual "slipper" itself was either the leather or rubber sole of one, or one that has been well-worn to the point that it is "whippy" and feels more like a thin leather paddle. What I felt and heard made me say, "Is that a SHOE?" I was assured it was a slipper — "A Totes slipper" to be exact – and it continued. The thud, the echo — it all seemed wrong and I really, really felt I was being hit with a shoe. I even made a comment that "it's like a Nike." My protesting made him put it away and get something else, and that something else is the basis for my "some things aren't DD to me" argument.

He took out and began whipping me with a small martinette. Strips of leather, knotted at the ends (which resulted in small blood-blisters all over the hip they continuously landed on). It stung pretty badly, but the thing that really bugged me was the implement itself - its use at all. When I think about being disciplined — which, to me, is different from a "scene" meant to re-establish roles which can often have a more D/s feel to it — I think about paddles, hairbrushes, belts, wooden spoons … yes, even switches. Aside from paddles, these are things that have other purposes, at least in theory, but are used to teach a lesson — or to make that lesson more memorable. They have their histories in schools and homes. For some, like myself, they even evoke childhood memories and that makes them somewhat more powerful.

But the martinette? And different types of floggers? To me, those are in a completely different realm. I can't imagine an authority figure from my childhood telling me, "Bring me the flogger — you're in big trouble!" The headspace is completely different. Were I with M that day, and we'd mutually decided to have a scene that was more about his role as the dominant and mine as the submissive — which isn't really like us, but I could see it happening — then an implement like that might make sense. For being disciplined for real-life infractions, things I really wanted to work on, pulling out the martinette took me totally out of the 'scene.'  I was a big baby about it, too — and I think that's very much because I was so weirded out by its use to begin with. This really didn't make sense to him — especially when he pulled out a big paddle and I took it *very* well. He seemed to not understand the difference at all.

Is it just me? Am I just too set in my ways about what is the RIGHT implement? Mind you, I'm not making any judgements about what anyone else uses … but I can't believe I'm completely alone in feeling like there are some things that don't make one's mind immediately think "discipline" or "punishment." There are very few cases where a hairbrush, wooden spoon or even a paddle cross over into "erotic" for me, either. (Belts? Ah, belts are just so perfect. I've known them to be purely discipline, purely sexual, or bordering on both.)

That man and I will not be seeing each other again. Ever. And the next person whose lap I care to be over is M … his is really the only lap I care to ever be over again, I think. But I would love to know what other people think about this — are there certain "toys" for certain scenes, for you, or are they all the same?

7 thoughts on “Toyland

  1. t avery

    i’m a lurker pretty much, and a guy lol, so i hope its okay for me to comment. but i have to say, i see it much the same.
    i live a bit of a different lifestyle but i think some of it applies here. i am not a spanko, i don’t enjoy it as play, or as something that turns me on. BUT….i live 24/7 in an M/s relationship, and spanking is a very common (too common lol) method of discipline for my M (my name for mine, also 🙂 )
    And like you, Angie, i have very set ideas on what is for discipline and what doesn’t work, and mine are just the same, pretty much. Anything that one might use for childhood discipline is what works for me, i see it as discipline. But other things- flogger, martinet and other bdsm style implements dont work well for me as discipline for RL and true infractions. To me, those represent the other side of our lifestyle, the playing, and roleplaying, and scening and that type of thing. And they can be used for discipline, but to me the represent other things and dont work well at all.

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  2. Etienne

    My understanding is that the martinet is indeed a traditional implement of discipline–in France. Every bit as much as the paddle in America or the cane in Britain.
    So it *is* somebody’s domestic implement, but that doesn’t make it yours. I enjoy the implements of other cultures, and to some degree get the “domestic” feel from them, but the paddle will always be the archetype for me.

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  3. Angie

    Interesting about the martinet. My minor was French in college and I spent some time there — never heard of it or saw them sold, etc. (I read a little on Wiki since seeing your comment.) But, you’re right — it may be someone else’s idea of a domestic implement. I also do *not* think of the cane in those terms or even like videos, etc where a cane is used.

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  4. Mija

    A “slipper” is definitely in my experience a “shoe”. As I constantly complain to Paul, the ones he uses on me have tread. They’re pure thud with the only sting coming from the rubber sole.
    That said, I totally get the idea of some implements feeling like they have the right headspace and others not. With the martinet, I can see it working for me, but only under circumstances where the person topping me explained why they were using it and how. Someone who was French and talked to me about how they remembered it being used in their household on disobedient children.

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  5. Em

    Hi, Angie.
    There’s nothing that appeals to me about being slippered. I think, like you, I would find the whole experience terribly distracting.
    I’ve been punished with a whole range of implements in the past, some traditional some not. To me *what* is used isn’t as important as how it meets my current expectations. If I’m expecting a certain style of implement or spanking and suddenly get something different it throws my headspace off, usually in a bad way. It’s very hard to get into the spirit after that, and I’d imagine the feeling is compounded when meeting someone new for the first time.
    I’m sorry the experience wasn’t what you’d hoped and that you and M are closer soon!

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  6. Malcolm

    Being English, I imagine the cane as being very suitable for domestic punishment. Indeed I have used it for that purpose. Paddle? not so much. Switch? yes, certainly, especially if the recipient has to go cut the switch herself. I especially like to see the narrow, intense welts a switch produces. Belt? better is the heavy leather strap known in Scotland as a tawse. A wooden spoon is also very suitable, especially for kitchen type offences!
    Did you have some discussion with your “mentor” before the action? Did you already know that using different implements that you weren’t expecting might put you off?

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  7. blaze

    Stray comment from a lurker : )
    I have had this conversation with my partner many times— out of a dozen or so implements that we use, there are a few that are solely disciplinary (wooden spoon, tawse, etc) and a few that are solely erotic (riding crop, suede flogger). The only thing that cross between are his belt and one particular leather paddle. To use anything else in the “wrong” context just wouldn’t work for us. I couldn’t take it seriously if he were to punish me with the riding crop, and it would definitely not be a turn on for him to bring the wooden spoon to bed.
    What I mean is, I agree : )

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