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Wednesday, June 20, 2012

"I'd rather fight than switch"

I am so dating myself with that title. Anyone remember those Tareyton cigarette ads/commercials from the 1960s? The premise was that Tareyton smokers would rather get in a fight than switch to another brand, and each ad was accompanied by a man or woman with an extremely fake black eye.

For those who never saw these ads, here's a slice of the past:

And by the way, Madison Avenue -- that should have been "We," not "Us." @#$%&*!!!!!

But I digress. This is going to be a blog about the always controversial topic of switching. A couple of notes before I start:

1. I'm opening it up for healthy, respectful debate. This is NOT going to devolve into an attack-fest. People can agree to disagree civilly.

2. There are no rights or wrongs in this discussion, only opinions. My opinions are just that -- opinions. I don't state them as facts.

3. The two comments I'm going to cite came from people I like. A lot. So this is not about pointing fingers and saying, "Look what that idiot said." It is about a difference of opinion. Period.

In recent weeks, through my various readings, I encountered a couple of statements. The first one was about bottoms, and suggested that in order to be the best bottom one could be, one should try topping a few times. And the second one was about male tops, stating that a man who tops, but won't try bottoming, is a... well, a kitty-cat. (OK, I don't like the word. Figure it out.)

AGAIN -- I like both these people, very much. It's just those sentiments that got my brain percolating and I knew I was going to have to blog about it.

One of the never-ending debates in the world of spankdom is about switches -- do they make better tops/bottoms, or don't they? If a bottom has never topped, or a top has never bottomed, how can they possibly know what they're doing and what it feels like? Should (and I hate "shoulds") a spanko experience both sides, at some point? Or is that a myth?

In this (admittedly pure bottom) woman's opinion, what makes a good top (or bottom) has a lot less to do with what they've experienced, and a lot more to do with (here it is again) common sense, sensitivity, and empathy. A good top reads the bottom, and while he doesn't feel her pain, he knows it's there and is vigilant. A good bottom appreciates the top and, despite teasing/bratting, respects him and gifts him with her trust.

(Yes, I know the above was M/F oriented. Sorry... it's just easier than all the him/her, his/her stuff.)

Here's my deal. Some bottoms are switch-averse; I am not one of them. I mean, come on. The two men dearest and closest to me are switches. I have had countless wonderful scenes with switches. However, I've also had countless wonderful scenes with pure tops (Keith Jones, Steve Fuller, Danny Chrighton, to name a few). AND... I've had wretched, godawful scenes with both switches and pure tops.

Bottom line? It seems to me that good men/women tend to make the effort to be good at whatever they do, scenewise. And assholes often remain assholes, despite whether or not they've experienced both sides. Clueless people remain clueless.

Case in point: Most of you know about the uber-traumatic scene I had several years ago with a friend's boyfriend. His way of giving me a half-assed apology was to say, "Well, when I bottom, I like having that done to me." I wanted to scream, "I'm not YOU, stupid!!" Actually, I did say "I'm not you," but I said it quietly and left off the "stupid." But come on. That's cookie-cutter thinking. This guy could be beaten until he takes his last breath, and he still wouldn't learn a thing about how to be a good top.

On Twitter recently, a friend tweeted that saying a top has to experience bottoming (and vice versa) is like saying a surgeon needs to undergo several surgeries himself before he can be a really good one. I like that. Granted, like most analogies, it can be picked apart. But at face value, it works for me.

If a man or woman wants to try switching, more power to them! I'm all for that. But the key word is WANT. It should be their choice, their urge, their curiosity. It shouldn't be because someone told them they should. That switching is the Only True Way to be a good bottom or top.

My biggest issue? Newbies. I'm an oldie (in more ways than one!). If someone were to say to me, "You know, you could be a better bottom if you tried topping a few times," I would simply smile and say, "No, I couldn't." (Or, depending on who said it, I could say, "You know, you could try minding your own @#$%ing business.") Because I've been around long enough to know what works for me and what doesn't, and I have the courage of my own convictions, based on my experiences. I can't top. Can. Not. But I think I'm a damn good bottom, regardless.

But what if I were new? I think back to my early, nervous days, when I was a brand-new clean sponge, ready to absorb, with so very much to learn, and so many trepidations about how to get this right. The thought of bottoming was scary enough. If someone I considered a mentor had said to me, "Eventually, you'll need to consider topping, at least a few times, just to see the other side," I would have run screaming into the night and never looked back.

So here's my plea, people. Many of you are revered in this scene of ours. Your words carry importance; newbies look up to you. Please please PLEASE... state your opinions (about switching, or any other important issues) as your opinions only, not as gospel. I know, I know... it should go without saying that it's your opinion, not fact, and people ought to presume that. But new, impressionable people believe what they hear. They are like newborns, soaking up what's told to them. They get all sorts of ideas of what's wrong and what's right, before they have a chance to develop their own individual footprint in the scene.

One of the many paradoxes in kink is that we are, both at once, all the same and yet all different. We are drawn by the same basic need, but the similarity ends there. The variations branch out from the core seed and what is perfect for one is horrifying for another. Switching, like everything else, is a choice. I really don't believe it's a necessity, nor should it be touted as such.

Your thoughts?


  1. Erica,

    When I began in the scene, I was determined only to bottom and never to top. At my core, I felt I was a submissive and a bottom; I had no desire to switch.

    After many great scenes with terrific tops, I was convinced I would only bottom A good friend of mine, who was a bottom and now tops suggested I try topping just for the experience. So, one night at a party, I wanted to give it a try and asked a friend to be my first bottom. She smiled and said she would help me. I discovered that it was a lot more difficult being a top than I had ever guessed. Each bottom is very different, their tolerance for heavy spanks, their tolerance for number of spanks, their headspace, the amount of skin to reveal, their brattiness, postioning, after care preference, etc.

    The topping experience gave me a deeper appreciation for tops and their skills. I could never have understood a top's headspace without being on the other side of the paddle.

    I know tops who greatly improved their headspace and skills by having the experience of a bottom a couple of times. They are tops 99.9% of the time, but gave it a go just to deepen their understanding of their craft.

    I know one of the individuals who is referenced above and she is an advocate of trying both sides of the paddle, but she would never recommend that everyone switch. Nor would I, switching is just not for everyone.

    Thanks Erica,

  2. Eh, switching just seems to me to be more about greed than anything else.


  3. Joey -- oh, I agree. Being a top is a lot of responsibility and a challenging job. One of the many reasons I don't want to do it! :-) I admire that you tried it.

    Cindy -- greed? I'm not sure where you're coming from with that. You mean, you think people switch because they want it all?

    1. Yeah! I say pick a side and stick to it.



  4. I don't believe you can't be a good top until you bottom. Of course, that comes from my own personal bias of someone who has absolutely no interest in receiving pain, avoids pain like the plague and wants no part on bending over and taking ANYTHING.

    That being said, I do believe that to be a good top one must truly understand what your implements can do. I see tops all the time smacking their hands or the back of a leg to test an implement's effectiveness and understand the sensation. Good idea. I had a friend in the scene (and a well respected top/dom) suggest the only way to understand is to have that implement used on you. THAT DOESN'T MAKE YOU A BOTTOM OR A SWITCH! It makes you an empathetic user of that implement. So I did. I had each and every one of my tools of torture used on me--one by one, at a "mild," "medium" and "hard" so I understood the sensation and how each implement felt. (I also did fire play lessons on my own leg first, before ever setting anyone else alight.)

    That doesn't mean I have any desire to switch, bottom, be hurt or anything of the like that vaguely resembles masochism. In fact, I hated every minute of the experience (which I wouldn't categorize as a "scene" at all--there WAS no headspace!--it was more an academic endeavor). But I AM glad I did it. I learned what each implement could do, how they felt. I understand what's a "kiss" and what's a jarring blow. I know how to finely tune a scene to take the bottom through an experience. I think that made me a better top.

    If you wanna switch--go for it. Is it necessary to truly "get it"? Hell no. I've seen tons of bottoms become switches and I've seen even more stand firm on their convictions to receive or give, as the case may be.

    The best advice I can give is: Know Thyself. Be true to who you feel you are. Become the best top or bottom or switch you can be. Don't wield an implement until you know what you're doing. Don't base how you play on a spanko video! Communicate, understand what your bottom likes and wants and play into that. Don't be truly cruel. Nothing good can come of that.

  5. I said this elsewhere, but my "heart" is in my bottom so to speak. I will ALWAYS prefer to bottom over topping someone. I enjoy the sensation of getting my ass spanked hard far more than I enjoy "hurting" another person. I may be similar to your friend's boyfriend in a slight way. As hard as I love getting spanked, it's much tougher for me mentally to want to spank someone else that way.

    But, I do have interchangeable facets of my personality that work for me in rare switch opportunities. When it comes to shoots, I have performed a switch role on camera and the feedback received was both roles I played were "successful" to some viewers. The smart ass brat bottom I typically am for private sessions morphs into a strict, no-letting-things-slide- "mean" top. LOL!!!!
    Both roles can bring much humor and entertainment to the parties involved whether in private, at parties, or on camera.

    Just trust your own desires and don't let people coax you into doing what does NOT feel like you.

  6. Craig -- you make some excellent points. I remember your telling me about how you tested the implements yourself, and experienced bottoming a couple of times. It's a valid action and an empathetic one. But yeah. I don't think it's an absolute must.

    Kelly -- actually, you're NOT like my friend's boyfriend. This person liked brutality and humiliation when he bottomed. So he just assumed it was OK to top me in the same fashion. That doesn't sound like something you'd do! :-) I admire that you're willing to top on video. I've been told many, many times that I could extend my video career indefinitely if I would do the same. But there's no way.

    1. I would never, EVER describe what I did as "bottoming." Like I said, it was much more academic.

  7. Craig -- mentally, I know it absolutely wasn't. I meant in purely physical terms, in this case. :-)

  8. Where I'm coming from on this is that I'm 95% Bottom. I have occasionally had a Topping fantasy. I've agreed to Top one friend as a favor if we ever meet face to face. I just don't think I could be a good Top for the most part. I know what _I_ like, but we're all so different as to what we like, that I could get into Topspace and give the person MY perfect idea of a scene, which could be their worst idea of a scene.

    G. is 110% Top. He has no interest in Bottoming, and it doesn't bother me a bit. I want him to know how to use the implements he uses on me, to have experience with them and know how I like them used on me, not to have experienced them for himself. When he found out that I wanted to be caned by him, he asked a friend's Dom, took copious notes, and then practiced enough so that when he caned me for the first time, I never would've guessed he'd never caned anyone before.

    There's something I would never have as a Top, that G. has. It's what I call The Power. His whole attitude, demeanor, and facial expression change when it's a punishment situation. He can be as silly as the next person when it's a play situation, but he takes punishment very seriously. I wasn't born with that ability to change over like that, to just take charge utterly and completely, and somehow I think he was. It's part of who he is, and I wouldn't trade it for anything, especially to know that he'd decided to Bottom for some reason. That said, if he DID decide that, it wouldn't change my opinion of him, but I REALLY don't think he'll ever change his mind.

  9. Jen -- that's an interesting point about how topping is more than just the physical; it's a demeanor. You know what? I think I could adopt a toppy demeanor if I had to. I've heard enough topspeak to be able to parrot it. BUT... the physical part? That's what I couldn't do.

    It sounds like G has done all he can in order to learn all about implements and what his bottoms like, without actually having undergone the physicality. That's what I'm talking about.

  10. @Erica and Jen.
    The demeanor transformation IS more enjoyable to me as Top than the physical part. At the BBW party, I did a switch role play with a drop dead gorgeous man and since it was HIS fantasy, I did my best to accommodate his wishes 100%. For a woman who never thought she'd top another person, let alone a man, this was a great "breaking in" experience. He only wanted a light to moderate hand spanking along with some harsher scolding. THEN when it was MY turn to go OTK, he did almost the exact same style to me in both physical and verbal delivery.

    I admitted to a close switch friend of mine that I feel it's very easy and natural for me to bottom, but when it comes to topping others, I feel "guilty" about knowing I'm causing discomfort to another person. She said she felt that way in her early top years but got over that. :)

  11. The only thing I learned from topping was that I am not, nor will I ever be, a top. :)

  12. Interesting reading, Regards,

  13. On another blog, there was someone who said that switches were a waste of time. Sometimes I think some in the scene have too much black and white thinking as if it has to be one or the other. What about people who do enjoy both? I would say that most of the switches are not greedy. They just like both sides of the scene. I liken it to this: I am right handed. I have friends who are left handed. Then there are people who are ambidextrous. Would we say that those people who are ambidextrous just can't make up their minds or are greedy because they are ambidextrous? I don't think so. Why, then, are there those who are unwilling to recognize there are people who just like to be both top and bottom? It isn't about making up their minds. It is about what each likes. I just don't understand the idea that a person in the scene has to absolutely be one or the other.

    I'm primarily a bottom and I have been toying with the idea of becoming a switch. I don't know if I will do that or not, but if I do, I don't want to be considered greedy or as someone who can't make up their mind. It will be because it is what I want to do. When I went so long (we are talking 40 years here)without knowing about the scene and having no one to spank me, I did role playing where I took both sides and spanked myself. I don't do it now, but I was able to do it then. So if I decide to become a switch, I probably could do it. And when I was a kid, I did spank one of my classmates when we re-enacted a scene from a popular western. :-)

    1. I think it would be hard to make a choice if you haven't tried both sides, woulnd't it? I can't imagine in my wildest dreams being able to Top anybody, but that may change if I get more confidence.


  14. Well, I freely admit to posting the "kitty-cat" statement, but I was actually quoting someone else. That being said, I think there's a lot truth to it. Not the first, nor likely the last time you and I will disagree, Erica- but I like this post and you've obviously hit on a controversial topic and done so in a classy manner.

    My thoughts on this are complex, and I almost wonder whether I should write a full post in response to it rather than a lengthy comment.

    But here goes... These are just my thoughts and I'm certainly not any authority on the matter, other than my own experience.

    By way of background, I posted that line as I was discussing whether I should register as a switch or a top at the first spanking party I was going to and wound up deciding to register as a switch. I actually debated whether to include that line and deleted and wrote it again. Of course that was the line Erica picked up on! In part I included it because I believed it, but in part as a challenge -it irritates me when people (men and women both, but calling them a "kitty-cat" is more of a direct challenge to the men) deny that they've ever switched because it doesn't fit their scene persona. (That's a whole 'nother post topic, though!)

    I don't know you Craig Aych- but kudos. At one point I decided I would try to get spanked for the very same reason- as purely an academic pursuit to make me a better spanker. I got something out of it (though very different from what I get out of giving a spanking) and you didn't. Fair enough. You and those like you are no kitty cats in my book!

    Maybe there are tops who are inherently good spankers. Kudos to them too. Whether I got anything out of it or not, experiencing being on the receiving end DID make me a better spanker. Not just because I knew how an implement felt delivered soft, medium, and hard- I also knew about the nervous drive to her place, wondering about what was coming up. About what it feels like to surrender control. What it feels like for someone to take down your pants and underwear. And I think that made me a better spanker. (Plus I picked up a few good tips on techniques that I didn't know!)

    Of course there are exceptions to every rule, but here's another analogy- wish I could link articles in comments- but drones are now a major part of the U.S. Airforce. They cost less and don't put the lives of our servicemen in harm's way. Who'd you rather have flying drones? They young video game whiz or the former pilot who's actually experienced air combat? Turns out the former pilots do a better job at avoiding hitting the wrong targets.

    Yes, every analogy can be picked apart, but back to the surgeon analogy... no, a surgeon doesn't need to experience multiple surgeries to be a better surgeon- they're asleep, you know... but I bet it would help with their bedside manner.

    Again- just my opinions, and thank you Erica for providing me a forum to voice them.

  15. Kelly -- see, I couldn't do that in a million years. I give you huge points for willingness!

    Pink -- I hear ya. As evidence that I too am no top, I offer you "Schoolmaster's Revenge." (cringe, cringe, CRINGE)

    SNP -- Hi! Glad you enjoyed it. :-)

    Bobbie Jo -- a waste of time? Someone actually said that?? Ouch. Yeah, I don't think it's about greed, either. Hey, more power to switches; they get to enjoy so much more!

    Cindy -- I think it's about your instincts, and which way your personal fetish rolls. For me, spanking-wise, I am a bottom. I know that to my core. And I still know it after 16 years.

    SS -- damn, I like you. :-) And yes, I know now that you were quoting someone else. But I really like that person, too! Anyway... I appreciate your taking the time to write out this thoughtful response. I give you kudos for your open-mindedness (and for your smarts in choosing a top!), and yup, we can disagree and still be buddies. Oh, and thank you for indulging the "kitty-cat" thing. (grinning) I don't know why I dislike the word pussy, but I do. Not as much as the C word, though!

  16. Hi Erica -- This is a VERY interesting topic :-)I will alway's be just a bottom, I wouldn't make a very good top it's not in me cause i am so naughty and too much of a brat hehehe LOL.My advice is to follow your own heart and do what make's you happy :-)I would much rather do something that make's me feel good then to do it to make other's happy or to impress someone,that would make me feel totally miserable.Much Love and hug's from your naughty girl Jade :-)

  17. Hi Erica
    Yes this is an interesting topic and for me i only ever top. It is not that i am a baby when it comes to pain it is the fact that i am in the scene for enjoyment and being a bottom does nothing for me. I am not a Dom or a Master, I do not want to treat someone as a slave, I am a Top. It excites me when i am spanking a nice female bottom as i would hope it excites her. For me you summed it up in a nutshell with, a good top reads the bottom, and while he doesn't feel her pain, he knows it's there and is vigilant. Perfect

    Thanks for the interesting debate

    BOB B

  18. Jade -- I agree; follow your heart. :-)

    Bob -- thanks! I do enjoy posting this sort of controversial topic now and then. When it gets discussed on forums, it often devolves into a flame war, sadly. But here, people are being respectful and I appreciate that.

  19. Hi Erica, I couldn't agree more with what you said. I had a wonderful partner who was a switch { I'm a bottom ) but I topped her a few times and I don't feel that those expriances had anything to do with how I bottom. As far as the arguement that the only way a top can know how and impliment feels is to expriance it himself, goes back to what you said about the top being able to read the bottom during a scene. In my opinion they ethier can or they can't and I have played with both. Unless the top your are with is a complete idiot they should be able to figure out that a 1/4 inch thick leather strap swung as hard as they can swing it is realy going to hurt! Sorry about not commenting here for such a long time,the vannila world keeps getting in the way but I still have been following and enjoying your blog

  20. Glen -- thanks for stopping by again. :-)

  21. Hi Erica- The point you raise is very interesting and will be the subject for debate for many years... I will try not to prattle on too long.

    In my experience (far less than yours), I have only ever been a sub to people who had experience as a bottom themselves. One of the most interesting series of experiences were with a particular woman (since then she has become a professional Domme), who at one party was the sub to a person I had not met previously (her husband). She was also the first person to get me to the "floating" stage just before subspace kicked in. She never took me to subspace as we always played at parties and whilst we discussed it, she was explicit in that she only reserved that pleasure for her slaves.

    At a munch, also attended by one of her slaves, the three of us discussed the exact same subject. She admitted that whilst she was a sadist at heart, she occasionally (about once a year) liked to let herself go as she needed to get a different form of release than she got as a top.

    For me personally, I felt comfortable as a sub playing with people who knew what is was like to be at the receiving end. One Top was able to push my limits so hard on one occasion, she stopped what she was doing as she did not want to go beyond what was then a hard limit. I begged her to carry on, and she so carefully shattered that limit, it required a complete reassessment of limits before our next play session.

    I am now a switch, but prefer to Top rather than sub as I have found more enjoyment has come with the responsibilities of topping and at the same time pushing the boundaries of the sub I play with. I agree with all those who say that being a Top carries huge responsibilities, especially for safe play and not causing any harm either mentally or physically. I am frequently totally drained after a session as a Top, and many observers (and less experienced players) do not realise how hard it can be to be a responsible Top.

    As for the comments about testing implements, any good Top who is looking to use an implement they have not used before (or not recently) the testing of it against a hand or the back of the leg is eminently sensible and a practice I would like to see happen more frequently at vendor stalls/fairs etc.

    To those people who will not (or have not) experienced the opposite role, I respect your decision, however even if it is only once, you should try it, even if it is in private with a person you can trust explicitly.

    Unfortunately, there is not much opportunity to play where I live, but that is an inconvenience rather than a necessity....

    I hope this is a helpful addition to your debate:)

  22. My responce to your question is this, i personaly am a pure Top/Dom which ever you care to choose, i could never switch nor woud i want to not for any reason.I fully accept their are those who exchange roles ect and if it is their thing then good for them. But i can only be the way i have always naturaly been throughout my life and am very contented in being so.

    Correction Man.

  23. I am fairly new to the spanking world. I agree that in the beginning I was confused as to where I "fit". I had a few requests from man to top them. I didn't know really what to say at first, I never tried it and never had that fantasy. I didn't know if that was something I had to try. Many told me yes.

    After reading your book Erica (late bloomer), I discovered that I didn't have to try Topping. I could be pure bottom if I wanted to. You made me realize that (and many other things). I hope there would be a guide book for newbies, something like "spanking for dummies" LOL But I never found one. Anyway, your book helped me a great deal as a newbie.

    I know now for sure that I'm 110% bottom. I don't think as a Top I would do a good job if I tried because it's not in me. I cannot see myself as a Top at all. And I don't think trying it would make me a better bottom.

  24. I have trouble understanding why someone would think switching roles would make a person a better top or bottom. The same rule doesn't really apply to any other sexual or intimate aspect of our lives. Being good at topping or bottoming or performing oral or any other act is about connecting with one's partner, being a good and empathetic partner, not taking the other person's place.
    If people want to switch, more power (or less, ha) to them, but being a good top or bottom is about being in tune (with one's self and one's partner), but about knowing what the reverse role feels like.

  25. This is a topic that brings up so many thoughts that I decided to fully address them in a post of my own instead of writing an overly long comment!

    In short, I am with you in that I don't believe that people have to switch in order to be good tops or bottoms. But, personally, I prefer playing with switches for different reasons (especially when being on the receiving end), it is very important for me that my mate is willing to switch and I have learned quite a lot by switching. Of course these experiences are based on the simple fact that I am a switch and therefore longing for a balance of both, topping and bottoming. But I think it is more than that. It also has to do with my kinky fantasies (the kind of top and play dynamic that turns me on) and with my communication style in general. And, like Secret Spanko, I am very critical of people who are afraid of switching (or of admitting that they do) because they believe that it makes them look less toppy or submissive or whatever. And of those who pretend that switches can't be "real" tops or bottoms in a scene.

    I need some more time to think about all these things, though, and then I am going to write a longer post about the topic. Thanks a lot for the thought-fodder! :-)

  26. longbean -- yes, it was! Very much so. :-) I am loving your turn of a phrase -- "carefully shattered that limit." It sounds like a contradiction in terms, but I totally get it.

    Correction Man -- whatever works, right?

    Nathalie -- hearing that my book was helpful to you brings me much joy! It's not easy being new in this; one hears so much conflicting information and so many different viewpoints. I'm glad what I wrote resonated with you.

    Anonymous -- good point about other sexual acts. I hadn't thought of that.

    Kaelah -- I look forward to reading your post! You always have something thoughtful (and thought-provoking) to say. :-)

  27. Have I enjoyed scenes with switches and strictly tops? Yes. Have I had scenes I didn't like as much with switches and strictly tops? Yes. I can see how experiencing the other side of it could give one a unique perspective. And if someone wants to do that for that purpose, or just enjoys both sides in general, great. But I don't see it as a requirement at all.

    A good top has a lot of skills. Being a decent person, smelling nice, and knowing how to aim are the bare basics. They know how to get in the head of their partner. They learn to read body language and the signals a person may give. They know when it's too much and when you really need just a LITTLE bit more. They can go from that stern scary disposition back to a big cuddly bear as fast as Clark Kent spins into his Superman outfit.

    Can some of those things be learned by having first hand experience bottoming? Maybe. Can they be learned without having first hand experience bottoming? Absolutely. I've seen it done. Experience and taking the time to get to know a partner is the key, I think, regardless of what other roles they might play outside of that specific dynamic. And I couldn't care less what they do when they aren't spanking me into bliss.

    1. Wow. I don't smell. I'm articulate. I'm decent. And aim? I don't hit your SPINE when I spank. How's that? ;-)

  28. Sorry, that was really long but I missed another point I wanted to touch on. I HATE it when people incorrectly assume I top or say that I SHOULD top because of my build and that I'd be good at being intimidating or something. I don't wanna top! Tall girls need spankings too!

  29. Lea -- not too long at all! I love hearing from you. :-D And that would annoy me as well. A person's desire to top or bottom has nothing to do with their freaking size/height!

    And Craig -- you do TOO smell! You smell nice. :-)

  30. One of the times I saw my top, she commented on the size of my hands and told me they would be good for topping. Now, I had been thinking along the lines of becoming a switch before she said anything. Well guess what? Her comment got me to thinking more about that prospect. I am not sure if I would be a good top, given what a good top does, but I can at least give it a try. I figured I was a bit too old to start that, but I have found out I'm not so just maybe. After all, when I didn't know there was such a thing as the scene and I didn't have anyone to spank me, I did it myself and I did role play. I can take both sides that way. So I guess we will see what happens. It will take a while, though, as I am still having trouble accepting this fetish in the first place! Seems I accepted it better way back when.

    This discussion has been very interesting.

  31. Quite a few newbies come to me for mentoring. How they are drawn to me, I'm not sure. I enjoy giving this advice to a newbie because it takes me back to my freshman class at Shadowlane, 2008. I just tell them my story of where I jumped into the lifestyle. I knew noone when I went to Las Vegas and came back making some friends. I also made some missteps, and the missteps are the most important things IF YOU LEARN FROM THEM ! I made the misssteps, I learned from them and I moved on. Since then, I've made over 250 friends, about 125 on Fetlife. I'm a spanking purist and I only top. Am I a good top? I don't know. Not all girls tell me I'm good, but many do and I get a lot of repeat performances. I like to think the best part of my topping is my courtesy and respect for my partner. She gives me her best gift. The gift of trust.

  32. Ben -- you are a kind soul indeed. I know why you are beloved!

  33. Your old ad reminded me of another ad similar to it.

    Bernie Ecclstone, the head of Formula One was mugged a couple of years ago. He was carrying $400K worth of valuables at the time.

    The watch maker did a print ad using Bernie's battered face.

  34. My feelings are that if someone says something like "I am a top only" (usually "dom only"), it makes me wonder how someone so close minded could be a good top. You are right on with your comments on empathy. With out that there can be no top space for the spanker.

    I switch and primarily a bottom but I have had better head space as a top.


  35. MrWarmBuns -- well... close-minded might be a little harsh. I say I am a bottom only, because I know I can't top. It's simply not in me.