Mina Button's blog

kink and feminism and stuff…formerly known as Absinthe Cocktail.

Archive for September, 2011

The Orgasm Revolution

Posted in Uncategorized on September 28, 2011 by

A long time ago, years ago, one of my best friends told me “I don’t come during sex.”  And so I bought her a new vibrator for Christmas–I’ve always been the sort of person who buys her friends vibrators.  A pocket rocket, since it sounded like she maybe needed a little more clitoral lovin’ in her life.

Since then, I’ve heard this or something like it from tons of people.  That they don’t have orgasms during sex.  And sex, in these conversations, seems to always be of the heterosexual penis-in-vagina type.  And really, the people who almost always seem to be telling me this are hetero, cisgender women.  And the part that bothers me the most is that, well, these women who’ve told me this always seem to think there’s something wrong with not coming during penetrative PIV sex.

This is a part of so many other problems.  The main one that springs to mind is the valuing of PIV sex above all other kinds of sex.  The idea that penis-in-vagina sex is the only kind that counts, despite the fact that there are so many other fantastic sexy things out there that a person can do, and also seriously Others people who can’t or don’t want to have PIV sex ever, or even most often out of their range of sexual activity.

And one day, after literally years of hearing about this from friends and acquaintances, I got really angry.  I was actually angry about something else entirely.  A misogynist twitter hashtag.  I mean, I know that’s a thing that comes up, like, every damn day on twitter, but that day, this was the last straw.  And I started tweeting:

And then it occurred to me that what we needed was a revolution–an orgasm revolution.  Where people of all different sorts were validated and their experiences were regarded as perfectly normal and awesome no matter how they come.  Or not, if they’re not interested in coming.

A few of my friends started picking it up (amusingly, Garnet was one of the first people to start hashtagging her tweets #orgasmrevolution).  A bunch of people re-tweeted me and I made a bunch of new friends.  I started a tumblr.  And…well…then things kind of slowed down and foundered.  So I’m trying to re-start and jump start the Orgasm Revolution.

Orgasms are awesome, even when they’re not achieved in so-called “acceptable” ways.  Every single wanted, consensual orgasm is freaking awesome.  So don’t let people tell you that you have to come a certain way.  Don’t let shame and “normality” win.  Just enjoy your sexuality the best way that works for you.

I hope to eventually accumulate lots of different stories from all different people about their own, personal Orgasm Revolutions.  So if you want to talk about your own unique, awesome way of coming, you can email me (arti.absinthiumATgmailDOTcom) or submit shorter stories anonymously on my formspring.  The more we talk about the huge, varied, amazing spectrum of experiences with this, the more it becomes apparent that everyone is okay, and that there is no normal, and that whatever your body does or responds to is valid and awesome.  So will you help me fight the Orgasm Revolution?

Bath time!

Posted in Uncategorized on September 23, 2011 by

Garnet was here last week-end.  On Sunday we hung out with her family and ran around the City doing fun stuff like eating delicious food and drinking fancy beer, but she came out on Saturday so we could spend some time together.  She texted me as she was on her way and asked if I would give her a bath upon her arrival.  She said I had a choice between meeting her at the train station and having her bath ready for her when she reached the apartment.  I surveyed the apartment and quickly decided that I needed to do a little last minute cleaning, and so I chose to have the bath waiting.

In the mean time, I scrubbed out the tub.  I did the dishes.  I put away the last of the clean laundry I had washed the day before.  I waited for Garnet to text to let me know her train had arrived.  And waited.

One of the things that I have lately become fascinated by is how D/s relationships work in the real world.  Because there’s a lot of porn out there, and a lot of erotica (like, say, The Story of O), and a handful of movies (like Secretary) that show you these fantasy-world versions of D/s where things pretty much always go exactly as planned.  In Anne Rice’s Sleeping Beauty trilogy, no one ever gets a muscle cramp.  And, well, that’s just not how things seem to work in real life.  In real life, stuff comes up.  People can’t stay indefinitely aroused like Anne Rice characters.  People are…well…people.  And cell phone batteries die.

Of course that was what had happened.  Garnet’s phone had died, so I didn’t actually have the bath ready.  Instead, she collapsed on my bed for a bit while I drew her bath, and when she was ready, she got in the tub.  We had picked up some really fancy bath beads recently, so the water was deliciously scented like milk and vanilla and sugar, and Garnet said it was the perfect temperature as she sank into it.  I beamed, proud of a job well done.

I’ve written before about giving Garnet a bath, but that was a far more formal kind of thing.  This was a more casual bath.  Garnet had a nice long soak while we chatted about old jobs we’ve had.  Eventually she asked me to scrub her, and I finally got to use the leather-scented bodywash Roderick bought me at Folsom Street East. I scrubbed her yummy creamy skin with our soft scrub brush and the leather-scented suds, and I washed her hair, and, when she was ready, I wrapped her in the softest, fluffiest towel I could find…she gave me a big, damp, hug, and giggled a bit about getting me all wet, and it was just so delicious being close to her.

After that we lounged around for a bit in our pajamas, waiting for Roderick to get home.  When he did, we hung out and ate the pineapple muffin tops Garnet had baked.  Eventually we went to bed, and snuggled up to Garnet, I could smell her usual scent (she always smells like incense for some  reason, and other things I’m not sure of that are just her) overlayed with the scents of vanilla and leather.  It was warm and comforting and I fell asleep quickly.

There’s an App for That!

Posted in Uncategorized on September 23, 2011 by

So friends, let me tell you the most useful thing about having a smart phone.

It makes me a better submissive.

Seriously.  I mean, sure, I also use it to take pictures and to always be up to date on my work e-mails and make sure my period isn’t late.  But I think the thing I use it for more than almost anything (seriously, I think the only thing I do more than this is play a kind of annoying game involving a baby dragon) is to keep track of my rules, tasks, and scheduling.  I think that Android is the main thing that keeps me organized enough not to be an utter failure.

The most useful app in this pursuit is Evernote.  Evernote bills itself as a way to remember everything–make lists, take photos, jot down ideas.  Their testimonials are full of quotes from people who use the app to remember creative ideas while out and about, or plan out their fitness goals.  And while I have been using Evernote to write down ideas for Halloween costumes or stories or whathaveyou whenever they pop into my head, the notes I consult most often are the following:

1. The daily affirmation Garnet has me read to myself twice a day.
2. My masturbation schedule.
3. My rules.

It is seriously the most useful, convenient thing ever.  Garnet sent me these things as Word docs when my rules went into effect, and I copied and pasted them into Evernote on my computer, and it synced with my phone, and now I always have them with me when I need to consult them.

I suspect Evernote may not want my testimonial, though.

I also have a really good to-do list app, with an alarm and a perky little octopus as a logo, for when I have specific things I need to complete by specific times.  And now that I have a phone that supports it, maybe a third of my checking in when I arrive places happens via foursquare rather than by texting Garnet upon arrival.

I have to wonder if anyone else does this.  I did stumble across one discussion on FetLife about using an app like foursquare or Google Latitude as an “electronic leash” to keep track of one’s submissive, but I’m really curious what other people are using.  Or am I the only submissive so inherently disorganized that I need to use my phone to keep track of things?

Edit: It has been pointed out that actually, probably the main thing I use my phone for is texting and/or sexting with Garnet.  But this is a close second.

On feeling defective…

Posted in Uncategorized on September 14, 2011 by

In my late high school/early college years, I read a lot of really unrealistic, sometimes poorly written erotica for free on websites. It was through this reading that I first really encountered mentions of the g-spot. It was often described as “the sweet spot” or with other semi-euphemistic language, and in a lot of stories it was a magical place that transported each and every woman into a mystical land of multiple, earth-moving, mind-blowing orgasms the instant it was so much as brushed up against by an errant finger or tongue. Other sources (like certain magazines) weren’t much different, other than describing where this amazing g-spot place could be found.

And so I decided to explore this magical place. I got myself to the mall, and to Spencer’s Gifts, and I bought myself a hard-plastic vibrator with a curved end that promised endless g-spot delights. I took it back to my dorm room (the blessed, wonderful, single dorm room that made most of my self-discovery possible during my junior and senior years) and popped in some AA batteries, and…well…was unimpressed. The toy was vaguely uncomfortable and pokey and while I was pretty sure I’d found my g-spot (it felt pretty great…sort of) the magical, rapturous, multiple-orgasms failed to show up.

Instead of, you know, realizing that the bad erotica (the most unrealistic of which appeared to be written by cisgender men) and the magazines were, well, unrealistic and giving me bad advice, I figured something was wrong with me. My g-spot was broken, it was non-responsive, and something was clearly really, really wrong with me. My friends who told me they were having multiple orgasms with their boyfriends seemed to be doing so through penetrative, penis-in-vagina sex (after all, what other kind of sex was there?), so the fact that I wasn’t coming at all from magical, g-spot-stimulating penetration clearly meant that my body was weird and not working right.*

I gave up.
I gave up for years.  It wasn’t until I had my g-spot stimulated by someone else, using their fingers, while also receiving fairly intense clitoral stimulation that I started to think maybe my body wasn’t broken.  ”Huh,” I thought, “I guess this g-spot stimulation thing is kind of neat after all.”  And I did notice that my orgasms were kind of different with g-spot stimulation, often my whole body would shake.  I still didn’t really have multiple orgasms.

Roderick bought me a Hitachi Magic Wand, what many have called “the Cadillac of vibrators” (which, I guess means it is unwieldy and kind of energy inefficient?) and multiple orgasms became more of a possibility.  I bought myself a Pure Wand, and have learned that my g-spot can give me awesome-feeling multiple orgasms–if I’m poking it with a heavy piece of stainless steel while also holding the Hitachi on my clit.

I’m not broken after all.  I just needed different tools, and a different understanding of how things worked.

This is the problem with believing that everyone’s body works exactly the same way.  It can make you feel broken or defective or just like ur doin it rong when really you could be doin’ it very, very right if you figure out what works for you instead of trying to make your body so something someone else has told you it should.

Everyone’s body is different, and that’s okay.  And whatever sort of stimulation works for you and your body is okay, too.

*The first part of this post was originally written for my sadly neglected tumblr project, the Orgasm Revolution.

Some awkward confessions…

Posted in Uncategorized on September 9, 2011 by

I have gradually started to become aware of the fact that I definitely have some internalized biphobia going on.

While part of the reason I don’t identify as bisexual is precisely because it includes the prefix “bi” and I don’t like reinforcing a gender binary–you can’t really be “bi” if there aren’t really two genders, right?

But the other part…the part I don’t so much talk about…is that I don’t identify as bi because…well…there’s a part of my brain that when the word bisexual comes up has the knee-jerk reaction of saying “Oh, but I’m not one of those girls.”  In that part of my brain, those girls are slutty and annoying and flaky and just-doing-it-for-attention. Those girls are also probably straight and just going through a phase.  Those girls just want to do something stupid and rebellious.  Those girls are also going to hit on me if they find out I kind of like girls sometimes, and that will be awkward.

This, friends, is what we call biphobia.  And while it’s normally the sort of thing I try to deal with, and, in fact, the sort of thing I yell at others to stop, it’s totally there in my head sometimes.

When I was in high school, I knew a bunch of bi-identified girls, most of whom I found annoying.  They were flaky, and didn’t respect other people’s boundaries (by which I don’t mean they flirted with straight girls who were kind of homophobic and grossed out.  I mean one of them bit me.  When I’d specifically asked her not to.)  Whether or not they were, in fact,”just doing it for attention”…well, that’s really none of my business.  But many of them did, in fact, kind of conform to negative stereotypes about bi girls.

But that doesn’t mean every bisexual person ever is like that.

Seriously, I’m talking about, like, three people here.  Three people who I happened to not get along with.  By deciding that every bisexual person ever is like that, I’m kind of being a huge asshole.  And by being worried that people will think I’m bi they will also assume that all these potentially negative traits are ones that I share…well…yeah.  Being a huge asshole.

I have only really just sorted this out.  But now that I have, I realize I need to do some serious work on knocking it the fuck off.

Oh, and the other awkward confession?  Since the title of this post is plural…well…when I started writing this post I totally forgot for a second that I wasn’t on livejournal.  I actually started looking for the “current music” box.  Ridiculous.

Depression

Posted in Uncategorized on September 3, 2011 by

So…I think maybe I’m for realz depressed.

Not, like, oh-no-something-sad-happened-and-now-I-am-sad depressed (which is a totally reasonable thing to be), but, like, even-when-everything’s-fine-I-feel-awful-because-of-chemicals-in-my-brain depressed.  I’ve kind of always thought I was just the former, like, really often, but today, during a conversation with Roderick, I tried to think of a time when I didn’t feel that way.  And, well, I can’t.  I seriously can’t remember a time when something didn’t come up every week or every few weeks that made me feel absolutely awful.

And I’m starting to realize that maybe always trying to find an outside reason for why I feel awful is really not helping.  Because there’s always an outside reason, and there’s always something that’s supposed to make it better.  If I can just lose this weight, I’ll feel better.  If I could just make more friends, find a boyfriend, get into a show, find a place where I fit in, get a better job.  But I’ve done all these things over and over again and it doesn’t get any better and I just feel like more of a failure for never being happy.

I’m also realizing how completely down on myself I am, pretty much all the time.  I am almost constantly thinking really terrible things about myself and finding ways to dismiss anyone who says otherwise.  I just never feel good enough.  I’m constantly apologizing–for bothering people, for saying the wrong thing, for my existence.  I really, really just don’t like myself at all.  I don’t feel like I’m worth the effort.  I don’t feel like I’m worth anything.

There’s a scene in Company, one of my favorite musicals, where Amy is being all neurotic and freaking out about her rapidly approaching wedding, and singing about how she’s not going to marry Paul “…because I wouldn’t ruin anyone as wonderful as he is…” and Paul eventually says to her “You know, if other people did to you what you do to yourself they’d be put in jail.”

When I first saw the show, that line was like being punched in the chest.  Because even in the midst of all the chaos in my head, I know that I am so like Amy.  And then I cried my eyes out all the way to intermission, because at least Amy had Paul to love her and I was single at the time and no one would ever love me and I was never going to have sex again and oh, God, my entire life was a disaster.

Four years later, I live in New York City, I have two amazing partners who love me, I have a completely amazing job that I find super fulfilling and I love, I have awesome, supportive friends…but oh, God, I still feel like my entire life is a disaster all the time for no real reason.

So maybe the problem isn’t that I’m not trying hard enough, maybe it’s really not that I’m just inherently a huge failure (God, I hope it’s not just that I’m a huge failure), maybe it’s really just that–like almost everyone I’m related to, did I mention that most of my family members have some form of depression?–I have some sort of chemical thing going on.

I scared.  I’m scared of this being a real thing, I’m scared of changing.  I’m scared of going on medication and losing my sex drive.  I’m scared that it will turn out that I’m only submissive because I’m sad, because I want someone to fix me–so many of my fantasies are all about being fixed, being changed, being altered to suit someone because I’m just so fucking messed up and broken.  I’m scared of not changing and finding out that this really is just all there is.  Maybe I really am just broken beyond repair.  And besides, like Amy says “The higher you go the harder it hurts when you fall…”  And I just literally cannot even imagine being any different than this, I can’t imagine not feeling awful at least some of the time.

But I think maybe I want to try to do something about this?  I think.  Maybe?

I don’t know.