Tuesday 20 May 2014

Reflections Review,
just in case you missed it the first time.

Professor Bridget Ross is jogging with her dog Daisy when Daisy becomes enthralled with another dog. Lotus, a Rodesian Ridgeback is entangled with Daisy and this caused Bridget to fall helplessly to the ground as Daisy's leash is around her waist. She always needs the security of having her hands free. She won't let Connor touch her when he offers aid. She is actually rude to him " don't touch me." Her demons run deep.

She sees him again and apologizes and offers to buy him coffee. Theirs is a slow moving relationship. He is a beautiful artist that is working as a janitor as he has his own demons that won't allow him to pursue his art as a career.

Together they try to form a relationship. She lets him closer than she has anyone else. He makes her feel things and allows her to try to come to grips with her past. He has dominant tendancies and urges and she has always had fantasies about being dominated, but she fights them at every turn and thinks it makes her a dirty girl. No body should like to be held down and spanked. She needs Connor in her life to show her that what she is feeling is okay and that she is normal.

Connor however, also needs her help so that he can put his own insecurities behind him and realize that the life that he is meant to live is also normal and totally allowable.

I thought that the chemistry between the two of them was sparking, I loved the fact that Connor was a bit younger that Bridget, it makes them seem so much more vulnerable. I also like that Bridget was dealing with issues at the school involving herself and her student Skylar. I didn't like how she kept it from Connor, but I appreciated that it was part of her character, it made her much deeper to me. I mean really because of her past trauma it only makes sense that she trust him in baby steps.

I thoroughly enjoyed all parts of this story from the sappy love story to the hot steamy love scenes. The plot line was well done and did not totally take place in the bedroom. I thought both the story line and the secondary characters were very well fleshed out. It was an easy read. I would rate it 5/5.

I was given the option of having Elene write a little blurb for me on my topic of choice.
My topic..... Poly or Menage Relationships,
This was her response. I loved it. Hope you do too.

Why Being Poly is More Natural Than We Give It Credit For

Exploring BDSM has exposed many notions and pre-conceived ideas that I didn’t even know that I had. It has turned my perceptions and stereotypes on their head and showed me that I have led a sheltered and na├»ve life in many ways. What I was completely unprepared for, though, was to have my notions of dominance, feminism and polyamory challenged and ultimately overturned.

I grew up in a standard nuclear household. I was also raised a Southern Baptist. Needless to say, I grew up with a lot of Christian guilt, but also with the inherent and unquestioned notion that monogamy was the only "natural" mating structure. All of my family members and all of my friends are in monogamous relationships. I have been in one for 22 years.

I was familiar with polygamy. In my youth, I was searching for a place to belong and studied many of the world religions … Zen, Islam, Judaism, and Taoism. I’ve read many of the holy books, but the two most fascinating were the Qu’ran and the Tao. As an aside, Muslims of the world follow the practices of the Hadith, a book written by men after the death of Mohammed, not the Qu’ran itself which is a very enlightened book that grants women rights, property and self-determination – I’ve read it cover-to-cover three times. I did several research papers on a woman’s role in Islam during my radical feminist days, but I digress.

My point is that polyamorous relationships exist and have served various purposes in human history, but they tend to be treated as the exception rather than the rule. Monogamy is put forth as the inviolable standard despite the fact that the Bible is full of poly relationships, the Qu’ran too. Of note, however, is that it is put out there in the Qu’ran as a balm to the widows or a social alm rather than a natural mating option. I decided to do a little research and what I found was surprising to me.

With regard to monogamy, this is actually in the minority in the natural world. Social monogamy is found in a few species most notably gibbons, swans and wolves. The number of species that are both socially and sexually monogamous is even smaller – 3% of the animal world. The reality is that many bonded pairs accept extra-bond partners into their relationship for sexual purposes. Sound familiar anyone?? Does to me. So, here is an example in the natural world of bonded pairs "playing with others." Cross that off the BDSM is abnormal list.

With regard to polyamory, this is actually the majority in nature. There are three different forms:

Polygny – A single male with multiple females. Think lions, horses, hippopotamuses … anything harem like.

Polyandry – A single female with multiple males. Examples include hyena, marmosets, Galapagos hawks and bees

Seasonal breeders – Generally speaking, animals that mate with multiple partners in a seasonal cycle. Examples include dogs, cats and tigers.

So, here again, my notions have been upturned. Polyamory is not just natural it’s the virtual norm in the greater animal world. So, why is it so stigmatized among humans? My personal take on all of this has to do with the level of effort it takes to raise children in human society.

For a while, I was toying around with a book about the role of virginity in today’s society, but came to quickly realize it has been done several times already and abandoned the project. I did learn some very interesting things though. For instance, in our hunter/gatherer days humans were not monogamous and virginity was irrelevant. It had no intrinsic value. If you came into your marriage sans a hymen no one cared.

Virginity didn’t become an issue until humans settled into an agrarian society. Suddenly, it took lots of effort to build a home and feed the family. Long story short, men wanted to be assured that their blood, sweat and tears were going to feed the product of their own sperm and not Larry’s next door. So, they wanted a woman hymen-intacta and they wanted her monogamous. Witness the birth of the modern, monogamous movement.

This is all fascinating to me because what I’m learning as I explore the world of BDSM and all it encompasses is that there are examples for every aspect of it in the natural world. Monogamy, polyamory, masturbation, homosexuality, fellatio, cunnilingus and even sexual fetishes all happen naturally. Don’t believe me … check out
Animal Sexual Behavior on Wikipedia.

I don’t consider myself religious. All of my reading and exploration of the world’s religions caused me to actually reject formalized religion as a whole and adopt faith instead. I do believe in a creator and I don’t believe that the world we live in is without purpose. It was a true comfort for me to realize that there is a parallel in nature for all of the various mating constructs found in BDSM.

So, to all of my poly people around the world … more power to you. To my Domme’s … enjoy. To my naturally submissive men … no worries, it’s just as normal as anything else. To the fetishists … whatever gets your rocks off. And to the rest of us … let’s take off the judgment goggles, so we can all live as naturally as possible.

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