Another play party: different venue, a different atmosphere and far different reactions (part 1) or BDSM is not my friend


Another play party: different venue, a different atmosphere and far different reactions (part 1) or BDSM is not my friendMy name is Zoe Hanis and I have discovered that not all play parties are created equal.

This one was in honor of a friend's birthday. When the evite showed up, I immediately pounced on it excitedly. This time I was ready: no apprehension, no major conversations; no worries about what to wear or wondering if I would be undesired, I was simply thrilled to go. I wanted to feel that energy again; almost as if one is a part of something so much bigger than themselves, something wonderful and free.

The social part of the evening went well, as I had previously met everyone so no longer felt like a stranger. I was giving a massage when it happened. “Thump,” it went. “Thump” pause “thump” pause “thump.” It was distracting.

So throwing on a robe, we went downstairs to find the cause of the unnerving noise.

Lo and behold the birthday girl was tied up, face down on the floor being paddled. She looked like she was enjoying herself, but something inside me cringed. I watched for a moment and moved over to the social area. The sounds began to change. Glancing over, I could see that her position had changed and he was using a riding crop on her nipples.

I tried to escape upstairs, but the noises followed me. Taunting me; getting louder. Nothing could shut them out. Not covering my ears; not talking with others; not watching the couple fuck on the bed next to where I lay. Pleasure and pain; an odd combination and my nemesis.

I needed a drink. I usually try not to consume alcohol when I feel that I “need” it. It sets the wrong precedent for someone who has as addictive a personality as I do. But I could think of no other way to calm my nerves – to relax. So I drank.

When the noises stopped and she was untied and robed, it was time for cake. Eating was the last thing on my mind. My stomach was in knots. I wanted to ask Guy to hold me, to make the darkness in my soul go away, to dry the tears that I never let fall. But he would pry and I was not ready to open that door. Not at the party anyway.

Later that night or early the next morning (depending on one's point of view), Guy did question me. And as I laid curled up safely in his arms, I tried to explain.

I am rather empathetic. I tend to pick up on the feelings of those around me quite easily. But I could not relate to either she who was making the noises or he who was eliciting them. It was fairly unnerving. It seemed as if the sexual or erotic energy that I had found to be so enticing at the last play party was missing. I found nothing stimulating about this display. In fact, I was downright dismayed.

While I can rationally understand the pleasure/pain connection, emotionally I can not. I know that there is a fine line between pleasure and pain – I have walked it before. I do understand that the intense sensations can send a submissive into subspace. But I can't do it – I either get angry (“what right does this other person have to hurt me?”) or myself esteem suffers (“I deserve to be treated this awful”).

I am not sure if it is because for many years actual intercourse was filled with pain with very little pleasure; or because I have horrible memories of a violence that will still occasionally haunt me. Regardless, I guess even if I am not involved, I still can't comfortably be around others involved in such activities.

The instinct to run; to escape was very high and if I hadn’t had so much to drink, I very well might have left.  But I knew that I was not in any shape to drive.  So instead I asked a friend if he would mind just cuddling for a bit.  Without hesitation, he bypassed the birthday cake and went upstairs with me. After all, what are friends for but to comfort us in our times of need.

And the night proceeded to get much, much better.


Zoe first described herself as "bad at monogamy" until about five years ago when she and her husband discovered the term that actually described her: polyamorous. Since then they have opened their family to other partners. Zoe is currently juggling relationships with her husband, their two kids, her husband's girlfriend, and a slew of friends/loves that she calls her tribal poly family. She can be reached on facebook or on twitter @ZoeHanis


  1. Wonderfully told and clearly deeply felt. Thanks for sharing.

    Like Sabrina, I am glad you had a friend there to hold you when you needed it.

    It is hard to understand the joy the pain brings one if you do not enjoy it yourself. You just need to trust that they are being true to themselves in their pleasure.

    Most folks with a kink side also completely understand if their kink is not yours.


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