Is it just a phase?
June 26, 2009
The whole BDSM thing has been going swimmingly but there have been ups and downs, and some quite significant downs too! There were a couple of times when he questioned if he really wanted BDSM anymore or if it had just been a passing phase. At first I took that hard. All the months of psychological anguish and processing and development and hard yards… now I really enjoyed it and he was saying it was all for nothing?! No freaking way! I wasn’t about to let that happen! But a part of me felt he was just feeling down and confused. He loved it so much there is no way it was just a phase. And besides, just because you’re into it doesn’t mean you have to want it all the time! there’s bound to be times when it just doesn’t work for you for numerous possible reasons. I told him my thoughts and was convinced I was right. Sure enough, a little while later I’d spank him and he’d instantly melt with a smile on his face. I knew he was in too deep to be just a phase.
But a few months later he was questioning it again. The times he questioned BDSM were difficult times. He was quite down – whether that was because he was questioning BDSM, or he was questioning BDSM because he was down we don’t know (but I suspect a bit of both if not predominantly the latter). It was difficult seeing him so down. So sad. It was as though he had resigned himself to the fact that it had just been a phase and he was mourning the loss of his interest, and the loss of that part of our relationship.
The second time I didnt feel defensive or resentful. I had grown. I reassured him that I didn’t care if we never played again, as long as I had him. He indicated that was concerned that because our relationship grew from the time I told him about the play party, and grew around us exploring BDSM together, that losing BDSM would adversely affect our relationship. I was adament that I didnt NEED BDSM in my life and that we could always develop other interests we could share as a couple (like, I dunno… maybe sex? hehe). But then he dropped the bombshell… he wasnt worried that I would lose interest in him if he wasn’t into BDSM any more, he was worried that he would lose interest in me!!! OMG! *cue tears* Was he crazy? I’m about ready to give up BDSM cos I love him so much, and I had already given up sex for him, and he is telling me that perhaps without BDSM he wouldn’t want me any more? I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. This was NOT what I was expecting to hear. I had been lovingly reassuring him it was OK and that I loved him more than anything and then he tells me that?! This just didnt seem to fit with my view on our relationship. We got on so well. I was staying at his place almost every night. He seemed to adore me when we would go out with friends. He seemed just in love with me as I was with him. I quietly panicked on the inside that this wasn’t as serious as I had thought. I thought I had found the one. But this just wasn’t measuring up!
I asked him questions to gauge how he felt about me. I encouraged him to explore evidence for and against his fear that he wasn’t into BDSM any more, and for and against the possibility that he would lose interest in me should we no longer play. I asked him about periods of time when we hadn’t had a proper session for a couple of weeks. Had he been bored? Uninterested? Not enjoyed my company as much? “No”, he said. He had not been bored and uninterested in me. He had not felt differently towards me during those times. “So why then would you be uninterested in me if we stopped playing now, if evidence so far indicates that you have not lost interest when BDSM is absent?”. He couldn’t answer that. He could see what I was saying but the logical was of no comfort to him. And that’s when I decided this was an emotional problem and not a problem of loss of interest in BDSM or potential loss of interest in me. This was mood induced. If he didn’t have logic or evidence then the only thing propelling his worries was his emotions. He had no reason to fear what he did, except for the age old doubt “but, what if…”. As a psychologist, I know very well that just because we feel something, doesn’t make it true. You might be worried about something but that doesn’t mean it is something of concern. Often when emotions slide into the depths people, being rational creatures, search for possible explanations to explain the emotions. Anything slightly tangible can become the “uh-huh! that must be it!” and the worry then takes on a life of its own, artificially linked with the negative emotion. There was little I could do but ride it out with him.
Sure enough, it wasn’t long before it was obvious to him just how much he enjoyed spanking. His mood was back to normal and things were just peachy!
Moral of the story: don’t place unrealistic expectations on yourself. Allow yourself to not desire BDSM all day, every day. Give yourself permission to take a break when you don’t feel like it. Life is not black and white. It isn’t an either or. Let it ebb and flow. Don’t fight the tide, just float along with it :)