Back to “Normal”

i wrote months ago about an awkward situation with my vanilla husband related to my association with the Leather community and a particular Leather Master.

It was a long, long period of estrangement and hurt feelings because of a misunderstanding and jumping to conclusions on his part. Very slowly and with tiny baby steps he worked his way back from near divorce to practically being back to normal  – or at least the way it was before my misdirected text message. He is still trying to understand my attraction to or seemingly sudden affinity for Leather and BDSM.  But, that is something he still has to work through. His passive aggressive comments haven’t had any effect on me, which is different for our relationship. i use to easily bend to his will.

Another almost back to normal relationship is with the Person i called my Mentor, Protector, and Guardian even though He never verbalized that He was taking on any of those roles with me.  W/we too had a misunderstanding months ago. i pleaded and begged Him not to turn His back on me.  i apologized profusely even though i think what i did was not any kind of direct offense to Him or disobeying orders. However, it did involve not telling Him that i was taking a six week class on exploring submission.  And as fate sometimes has it, He visited the instructor the first night of class and saw me waiting for it to begin. He was cold, aloof, and wouldn’t respond to texts after that night.

Anyway, i eventually gave up trying to reestablish a relationship with Him.  Then, after i attempted to start a BDSM mentoring group  – not too successfully  – i reached out to Him for help. W/we talked through text many times with me trying to describe my vision for the group and listening to His suggestions.  W/we then came to an agreement to work together to try to generate interest and build a group. Even with Sir’s guidance the group didn’t take off.  Guess there isn’t as much need for mentoring in the gay BDSM community as i thought or else i just didn’t get the word out enough.

Now when i see Sir out He always asks for a hug.  Recently i attended a class He taught on Hot Wax play.  i had taken the class before but wanted to continue to solidify the relationship between U/us, to support Him in His class, and to meet a newbie guy i had met on FetLife. 

So, if you allow enough time to pass sometimes with love or a strong desire to reestablish a relationship with a lover, spouse, or BDSM M/mentor it can be done.  But, in these to instances i believe my spouse and i had a strong love connection beforehand. With Sir there was deep respect, and an instance where He was critically needed and valued, and i showed perseverance in trying to reestablish O/our previous sense of comfortability. And eventually He responded favorably. 

Wishing Y/you peace, love, and little drama in Y/your relationships. 

Thanks for reading, 

boy stray 

Get Off Y/your Asses Men!

Last night was the first meeting of this new group i came up with that has the goal of drawing in interested individuals new to the Leather Kink BDSM lifestyle.  T/they are turned on by M/men in full leather.  T/they are kinky and want to meet other gay M/men like T/them.  T/they are drawn to various BDSM activities and the implements used to induce pain and pleasure.  T/they are just curious.

W/we want T/them all! 

This group meeting had three RSVP’s, then one dropped out of the “interested” list completely before i had even left the house.  my former Mentor & Guardian came with one of His boys after much conversation via text trying to coax Him to at least meet and discuss O/our concepts and direction.  W/we arrived before the established meeting time and talked, exchanging ideas.  Approximately twenty five minutes later a participant came in to the coffee shop.  After introductions W/we learned his whole kink revolved around ONE and only one activity he wanted done to him, and he was wanting to find a partner or two to accommodate his kink.  That clearly was not O/our focus.  The second Man, a Top, did not make it.  i hope He comes to the next meeting.  i was a little bummed out about the turnout till i realized W/we had a 50% show rate…one out of two came.  Success!

i got home and saw the participant who came had removed himself from the group listing already.
My question to Y/you:  

Does an official, organized and sanctioned mentoring program exist in Y/your Leather Kink BDSM community?

If so, i would like to hear all about it.  If not, was there a program at one time and it petered out, or Y/you just couldn’t get that “kite to fly” where Y/you live?  

i want to pick Y/your brains, mine Y/your thoughts and experiences.  

As a nurse i was once asked by another nurse, “why do nurses ‘eat’ their young?”  i hadn’t realized it was a pattern of behavior for older, seasoned nurses to make life hell for new nursing graduates.  i vowed not to do that as i grew into my professional role.  And i never did.  i loved teaching, modeling behaviors, and showing them the ropes in their new career.

i tell Y/you all that not to brag but to put my current actions, goals and drive into seeing that this Leather, Gay, Male, BDSM & Kink Mentoring program gets off the ground.  i don’t see the older, seasoned Leather Men/boys eating their young.  i see some ignoring newbies and others seeing the newbie, but letting H/him flounder trying to meet others, learn protocol, experience BDSM and Kink, and just trying to fit in somewhere…anywhere!  Very few will offer a hand of recognition, support and encouragement to that lonely new guy.

Why is that Men/boys? 

i have been there.  i have floundered, fucked up, nearly got myself into possibly dangerous situations, and why?  Because i had no knowledge, no experience, no friends and/or no connections in the community i wanted so desperately to join.

my goal as a not so new newbie is to help establish a program for other newbies that develops mentor/mentee connections so the newbie doesn’t have to walk alone on H/his journey.  H/he will have a friend, a guide, a mentor beside him.

So, get off Y/your asses Men!  Can Y/you help a Leather brother?

Thanks for reading,

boy stray

 

me, me, me….or how can i serve You?

I read a lot of profiles online of Men/boys seeking BDSM connections. Most of the profiles are submitted by submissives and in my opinion are usually asking a Master/Dom to use them, abuse them, & tie them up, or they are seeking a “rape ” scene which is often a gang rape fantasy.

Sometimes i even fall into that mindset of just wanting a big burly Dom to use and abuse me as well.  But it hasn’t happened yet.  my online profile was previously all about what the Dom could do to meet my sexual needs and to play out my BDSM fantasies and desires.  Luckily i’ve known a Dom for about two years who i asked to read my profile.  He provided truthful and constructive criticism, and gave me suggestions on making improvements to the profile to show that i am a service oriented submissive, who seeks to provide services outside of the dungeon, as well as working to meet HIS needs…not mine!  Also i was told to share information about who i am outside of the Leather community

i thought long and hard about my skills, experiences, work history and all other aspects of my life that might benefit a Dom.  i rewrote my profile to include a little about me as a person and then i detailed what this submissive could offer a Dom.  Since i loathe housekeeping that was not an offered service.  But i was able to include organizing His home or office, caring for His leather, cleaning and putting His toys back where they belong.  And, i offered to run errands for Him.  The opportunity to provide other services was left open for discussion.

When a submissive tells a Dominant what he wants or needs or expects to happen is in the relationship or a one time BDSM play scene is in effect Topping from the bottom.  This has become so prevalent that it has become a real problem.  It is discussed in meetings, online, in books, and in magazine articles.  There are many submissive wannabes out there  thinking, they, as a bottom want all these kinky things done to them.  So, when they find themselves in a play situation they begin telling the Dominant what to do and how to do it….”flog me, beat me, bite me, fuck me, spank me…fuck me!”

Some subs coming out now may think that is the way it is…that a bottom or true submissive is supposed to tell the Dom in a scene what he wants.  Doms often comply.  They may not know how or want to exert Their power and Dominance in the relationship or in just a one time scene with some random sub They met online.

THIS IS THE REASON i Am a staunch advocate for developing MENTORSHIPS in the BDSM Community.

W/we need to welcome and nurture new Men/boys into the BDSM Leather community.  T/they need, and most likely want to be guided, supported, educated and brought into the Leather community to become fully integrated as an experienced, educated, and competent Dom or sub.

In a mentoring program, the M/mentor should:

  1. Share T/their personal journey & history
  2. Provide information about the history of BDSM and Leather community
  3. Teach about Old Guard Leather and how it is changing
  4. Teach about an appropriate “mindset” for the role in which T/they see T/themselves
  5. Discuss and assist in learning about & purchasing those items such as Leather boots, belts, pants, vest and anything else T/they will need to overtly exhibit T/their Dominance or submissiveness
  6. Discuss the concept of earning your Leather and what every item signifies as they prepare for T/their life in Leather
  7. Require the mentee to read appropriate books and articles & to give a report to the mentor on each one
  8. Require the mentee to keep a daily journal of thoughts, experiences and questions that will be reviewed by the mentor
  9. Network the community with the mentee introducing H/him to a variety of other people
  10. Assist T/them in examining T/their desires
  11. Help T/them to learn how to find, approach, and negotiate a hot scene with someone
  12. Provide checklists of activities that are to be discussed with a play partner prior to a session beginning
  13. Determine the frequency of face to face meetings based on the knowledge and experience of the M/mentee
  14. Discuss the boy’s Bill of Rights & provide a copy
  15. Discuss Leather Protocols
  16. Assist with developing or editing an online profile

This sounds like a lot of time and energy is invested in the mentoring of another person.  And it probably is, but wouldn’t Y/you have wanted the kind of guidance and education that you as an experienced Dom or sub can now share with a fledgling Dom or sub trying to find T/their way?

Come on Men/boys you can do this!  Y/you should do this!

Develop a Leather BDSM, Kink & Fetish mentoring program in Y/your communities!
Doms…subs…L/leaders of Leather communities, THIS IS A CHALLENGE TO YOU ALL.

One last thing.  i started a Meetup on Meetup .com for Men/boys who want another opportunity to meet and socialize.  Also through the Meetup i hope to develop a mentoring program here in Fort Lauderdale. Contact me if you want more information. 

Let me hear from you.

Thanks for reading,

boy stray

Mentoring in the Leather BDSM Community

In a previous post i believe i talked about a mentoring relationship that ended sadly for me.  It is the inspiration for my research into mentoring  in the Leather community and for writing of this post as a hopeful mentee.  i hope you enjoy it, feel motivated by it, and work toward developing and implementing an organized mentoring program within Y/your Leather organization and/or community.

Mentor – a Dominant, or boy, who acts as a trusted counselor or guide

Mentee – the boy, or Dominant, who with a mentor works to achieve H/his Leather BDSM goals 

Mentoring in the Leather BDSM/Kink community is a powerful development tool that can enable the M/mentee to achieve or exceed H/his goals and aspirations in becoming a knowledgeable and skilled leatherboy or Dominant.  The role of a M/mentor is multi-faceted, can be either formal or informal, and may change or evolve as the needs or goals of the M/mentee evolve.

What does a mentor do?

Depending upon the M/mentee’s needs, a M/mentor:

Shares knowledge and life experiences, skills, expertise and time
Provides guidance and advice
Listens
Inspires
Offers encouragement
Shows a genuine interest in the M/mentee’s questions, concerns, apprehensions
Is open and honest at all times
Discusses goal setting & assists in developing the M/mentee’s goals                        Advises on personal development within the Leather community
Identifies resources in the Leather BDSM Community
Helps to develop skills and increase experiences
Provides insight into Leather culture
Can provide exposure and visibility within an organization & the community
Advises on networking and networking opportunities
Coaches
Supports
May introduce to important contacts
May serve as a sounding board for the M/mentee                                                                   May serve as P/protector to prevent interaction with unsafe people/situations                     Is accessible
Motivates the M/mentee toward H/his full potential in the Leather community
Assists the M/mentee in avoiding mistakes and learning from good decisions
Guides the M/mentee to self-determination of H/his right course of action
Is a positive role model
Provide constructive feedback honestly and openly
Is a Cheerleader

Edited from http://www.mentorcity.com

Qualities of a Successful mentee include:

The M/mentee establishes a personal commitment to be involved with another person for an extended time. The M/mentee has to want to be a full partner in the mentoring connection and be invested, over the long haul, to reach H/his goals.

T/they prepare and do the appropriate “homework” for meetings with T/their M/mentor.

T/they work to gain the skills, knowledge, and abilities to grow.

T/they are flexible.   Successful M/mentees recognize that relationships take time to develop and that communication is a two-way street. T/they listen to T/their M/mentor, and consider new options.

T/they take initiative, seeking the M/mentor’s advice when needed.

T/they focus on the goal, not getting lost in the process.

T/they recognize that mentoring is only ONE development tool. M/mentors can save time plus inspire, teach, and encourage the M/mentee. T/they can be excellent role models for what the M/mentee wants to do and become.

T/they realize that T/they can also learn from many other sources.  By recognizing that T/they can benefit from a variety of sources, perspectives and styles – even those quite different from T/their own – T/they open T/themselves up to new ideas, valuable information, and a wide range of viewpoints. T/they may have one or more M/mentors as part of T/their overall personal development strategy.

T/they know and are able to discuss T/their needs and objectives with the M/mentor. This means that T/they must look inside T/themselves to identify areas that may need work and share them with the M/mentor.

T/they have the ability to listen and to accept different points of view. The M/mentee needs to be able to receive feedback and look at the situation from the M/mentor’s perspective to gain a more objective viewpoint. One of the biggest values of the mentoring connection is the ability to have a more experienced person’s viewpoint. The M/mentee has to be willing to try new things, to consider different ways of getting “to there from here.”

Counterproductive Mentee behaviors: Twelve Habits of Toxic Mentee

A light-hearted look at how not to be a mentee:

Bring to the first formal meeting a long shopping list of things you want the M/mentor to do for you
Expect the M/mentor to be available for Y/you, whenever Y/you want T/them
Regard the M/mentor as Y/your prime source of gossip to pass on
Expect the M/mentor always to have the answer
Expect the M/mentor to decide when to meet and what to talk about
Boast about the relationship to your colleagues at every opportunity
Never challenge what the M/mentor says, thinking H/he knows best
Blame the M/mentor whenever advice doesn’t work out thinking H/he should have known better!
Treat mentoring sessions as mobile – the easiest item to reschedule at the last minute
Use the opportunity of the mentoring session to moan or whine about lack of progress
Make it clear to the M/mentor that Y/you want to be just like T/them – adopt T/their style of speaking, dress and posture
Never commit to doing anything as a result of the mentoring session.

Edited from http://www.pcaddick.com

Successful Goal Setting for the M/mentee

Establishing clear goals is the key to helping Y/you discover what Y/you want to achieve out of Y/your new mentoring relationship. It’s a critical step in defining Y/your work with Y/your new M/mentor and mapping out Y/your efforts moving forward.

To help Y/you get started, here are six suggestions designed to focus Y/your thinking so Y/you’re prepared for Y/your initial goal-setting conversations.

1) Clarify what Y/you want to accomplish.

Ask Y/yourself: what is the one bottleneck that’s stopping Y/you from reaching Y/your goal as it pertains to successful acclimation into the Leather community/lifestyle? The answer to this question will illuminate Y/your core problem, providing a critical piece of information that Y/you and Y/your mentor can use to build Y/your future goals around.

Y/you may start with a simple answer, like “I/i don’t know enough (or anything) about the Leather BDSM/Kink world,” but that only speaks to the broad issue and not the root cause. Push Y/your thinking a little further to arrive at a more specific answer, like “I/i want to be knowledgeable about Leather protocols and experienced in BDSM activities as a submissive.”

A focused answer like this clearly articulates Y/your objectives and makes it easier for Y/you and Y/your mentor to develop the appropriate goals—in this case, learning proper interaction with Leather Dominants and with other submissives in a Leather social situation and in a broader, general society context, and identifying those activities I/i am interested in experiencing and identifying the Dominants or submissives who can help M/me in achieving this goal.

2) Make sure Y/your goals align with reality.

Next, it’s important to assess whether or not Y/your goals are feasible given Y/your circumstances.

Ask Y/yourself the following questions:

Do Y/you have the time and resources available to meet this goal?
Are Y/you fully dedicated to achieving this goal?
Are Y/you aware of the sacrifices this goal will require and are Y/you willing to make them?

Based on these answers, think critically about whether or not Y/your goal is realistic. This is a great conversation for Y/you to have with Y/your M/mentor, as T/their Leather BDSM/Kink experience can provide thoughtful insights to help Y/you gauge the feasibility of Y/your goal.

3) Determine Y/your benchmarks for success.

Now that Y/you’ve set your goals, it’s important to define what success would look like to Y/you. Think about the specific items that would indicate success to Y/you—e.g., successful and comfortable interaction with Sirs and boys at Leather events, and when encountered in public, and having experienced Y/your top 5 BDSM activities within a predetermined period of time.

Consider what achieving these benchmarks has looked like up to now and share this information with Y/your M/mentor. Work together to set numerical targets for each goal, like attending 3 classes on BDSM within 5 months.  That is a specific, realistic and attainable goal that can be measured.

Setting these benchmarks early provides a great way to track Y/your progress, telling you exactly how you’re doing at a glance.

4) Set a realistic timeline.

Now that Y/you’ve worked with Y/your M/mentor to define Y/your goals, key metrics, and targets, it’s time to set a schedule for achieving them. Y/you may already have a deadline in mind, but Y/you should work with Y/your M/mentor to make sure Y/your timeline is realistic.

Start by asking Y/yourself the following questions:

When are Y/you prepared to start?
How much time can Y/you commit to Y/your goals each day, week, and month?
Based on these answers, work with Y/your M/mentor to assign a date to the goals Y/you’ve established—for example, attending one Enforced Dress Code at XYZ Leather bar by January 31, 2017.  Make sure Y/you set a timeline that’s long enough for the goal to be realistic, but short enough for Y/you to stay motivated.

5) Define strategies and map out the path to success.

At this point, Y/you have a target and deadline in place, so now it’s time to work with Y/your M/mentor to define the actionable steps that will help you reach the goal. This is an area where Y/your M/mentor’s advice will be invaluable, as T/they may have ideas Y/you hadn’t even considered.

Work as a team to determine your overall strategy. For example, if your goal is to experience flogging, the steps Y/you might take are:

  1. Discuss Y/your desire to flog or be flogged with Y/your M/mentor
  2. Discuss any prior experience Y/you’ve had, positive & negative
  3. Talk to other Doms and subs about T/their experiences, good and bad
  4. Take a class on flogging
  5. Learn about the different materials that floggers are made of
  6. Identify a Dom or sub in the community who will help Y/you achieve this experience
  7. Develop a rapport with that person to gain insight into how much force can be used during the flogging, whether Y/you are the Dom or the sub
  8. Flog or get flogged, or both

6) Track Y/your progress frequently.

Once Y/you’ve put Y/your plan in place, be sure to track Y/your progress using the benchmarks Y/you established with Y/your mentor. When Y/you can see how close or far way Y/you are from hitting a target, it can be extremely motivating and encouraging. This will keep Y/you on the path toward achieving Y/your goals.

Y/your first goal-setting meeting can seem daunting, but by following these best practices, Y/you’ll ensure a productive, focused meeting with Y/your new M/mentor. Spend time working through these exercises in advance, so Y/you can come to the table prepared and get the greatest benefit from Y/your M/mentor’s time. Y/your mentoring partnership will be unique, so feel free to use our suggestions as a guide for developing a goal-setting process that makes the most sense for Y/you.

Starting a Mentoring Culture in your Organization or Community

Ensure that your mentoring program aligns well with your organization’s values, mission, and goals.
Organizational leadership must support your mentoring program.
Appreciate the importance of your mentoring program and allocate the resources and time required to support it.                                                                                                      Educate interested members in the art of successful mentoring relationships and in methods of developing goals that are specific, measurable and attainable.
Ensure that your mentoring program is highly visible in your organization. Talk about mentoring and its benefits regularly to the members participants.
Create value for your mentoring program. Encourage members to participate in the mentoring program and as a result they will become champions of the program.
Support the confidentiality of the mentor/mentee relationship.

 

Let’s build a strong, supportive, educated, and experienced Leather BDSM/Kink community in South Florida and throughout the country!

As always Y/your comments, criticism and suggestions are greatly appreciated.

boy stray