Life As A Dominant with an Anxiety Disorder

There’s a lot I want to say about this, so you should know – this might be a bit all over the place.

In 2013, I was diagnosed with an anxiety disorder – specifically Panic Disorder, in which worry and panic tend to live alongside me each and every day.

This makes me think of something a little amusing to me – the people who haven’t read my blog, who haven’t touched the deeper parts of my psyche, shall we say? – never guess that I am a Dominant, that I identify with dark, sadistic sexual urges on a daily basis.

And sometimes the readers, who grace my blog daily or whenever, are surprised when they read or hear that I struggle with anxiety a lot.

In person I am rather withdrawn. I’m quiet, actually referred to as a man of few words. I’m introverted – until you get to know me or I get to know you and feel at ease. Even then, I’m socially awkward – I don’t have much of a filter and dark, dry, goofy, perverted humour slips through. So I understand completely how people can be miss entirely that I am a Dominant with a streak of sadism.

That doesn’t come through on the blog though. While I am generally my awkward self in the digital world, there’s more time to think and create a response, rather than waste real time with a person not knowing what to say. I am myself, and you are getting truthful, honest-to-goodness responses, because there’s less a degree of worry involved.

Most days of my life, I have a handle on my anxiety. On these days it’s nothing more than a nervous disposition about something – work, health, the future. It’s worrying but between what psychologists have taught me and what I’ve read, I have a grip on it.

I guess you could say anxiety has stages. On a good day, it’s just mild worry. If there’s a problem, a fight with a friend or I get myself into a spiral of depression, I will spend the whole day obsessing over every tiny detail till I am mentally exhausted.

In this mild-worry-stage, when it comes to dominance and D/s and all that entails, there is a part of me that is usually self-critical towards my actions, my demeanour and my ideas for tasks and scenes and protocols.

There was a moment, one time, where I walked into our bedroom and she’s wearing my favourite lingerie – and I just froze with doubt and anxiety, ruining the moment and mood. Kitten could read my face and we talked about it right there and then before the moment continued – but I will say, in the beginning, my anxiety and my inability to express my anxiety caused self-doubt in her own mind.

Self-doubt that was alleviated thanks to our many in-depth discussions about my weird personality quirks when it comes to shyness or anxiety or what have you.

I WILL SAY – time and practice has helped me to be less critical about my own voice and ideas. There’s always this frightful idea that I’m an idiot, just bubbling away beneath the surface, but I have been getting better in telling it to be quiet so I can be who I want.

On the really bad days, I’m not me. I live in a constant panic that everything – my life, my world, my relationship – will come crashing down because in that moment, I have no idea how long the panic will last – will it be a week? Another month again? I don’t eat, sleep is interrupted, and our D/s relationship is put on hold. The things I love to do – write, read, game – are the last thing I want to do. I don’t enjoy anything that I love.

I’m a mess. I’ll hate myself for being weak, for ruining kitten’s week. I tell her to leave me, she’s better off. I’ll sob uncontrollably, I’ll come up with anxiety-fuelled thoughts that make no sense, and I’ll want to run and keep running and never, ever look back. The last thing I’ll ever want to do is be Dominant and lead.

Being panicked and spiralling can last anywhere between a week to a month. In that time, I don’t eat properly, I’m constantly assessing my own reality, how I feel, things that are said. Even my taste is out of order.

And then….slowly everything will come back to me – my taste, my enjoyment of the things I love. Dominance. I’m me – properly me. All of my systems and it’s many files reboot and for the next week, I’m installing updates and getting back to my regular life of love, work and D/s.

Usually, with my returning state of normalcy, my sex drive will be out of the roof. I can’t say why, maybe it’s just pure joy from feeling like me again and not being riddled with thoughts conjured up by anxiety. But there you are.

I have been blessed though, to have someone who will stand by me through the storm – who will shelter me from the torrential downpour with her own body, even if it means being pelted with rain.

She doesn’t let me buy into my own anxious bullshit. She will hold me, hear my paranoia, reaffirm truth and reaffirm her love and that she is not going anywhere and will be here until I feel better. That….that ability – to have that unwavering patience, is so beautiful and special that it brings tears to my eyes as I write this. It’s something I could never FULLY repay, no matter how much I return the favour when she’s feeling out of her element. It never seems to be enough.

Beyond the spikes, anxiety is manageable. I realised, early on, that I couldn’t get rid of it, I just had to find a way to live with it – and I have. Most days I am fine, I am me. Panic attacks might still hit me in my sleep or randomly while in the cinema but I am getting better at alleviating it via nude meditation before it infects the rest of my mind.

Lastly, I will say this – man or woman, teenager or adult, dominant or submissive, if you ever find yourself in a downward spiral and you want to talk or need a distraction, you are always welcome to email me directly – no one deserves to be alone in that time. Sometimes you just need an anxiety buddy.

 

 

On Self-Harm, BDSM and Mental Illness

In an earlier 30 Days of Kink post, I talked a lot how I distanced myself from playing with blood as a kink because of my mental state at the time.

A fellow reader asked me to elaborate – and I wasn’t sure how I could, or what I could even say, but I thought I would attempt to talk a bit about it, in case there are those out there, lurking and anonymous.

I can’t really tell you why I began to cut myself when I was a teenager. I’m sure internet articles will tell you the basics about it – it’s a cry for help, it processes feelings, all that. I’m not disputing that, I’m just saying I’m not sure why it happened for me. Maybe I was making sense of the world and processing through my first real break up with a girlfriend – I don’t know. I was just drawn to it, seeing how much pain I could force onto myself.

What I can tell you is a girlfriend and I, a likeminded Kinky individual, began experimenting with knife play, right down to causing bleeding. I can still see her carving asterisks into her thigh as we both got off on it.

The thing was, this wasn’t knife play in a controlled safe environment – our heads weren’t in the right frame of mind. We were both dealing with depression, mine all the more sneakier by me not even realising it. Looking back I suspect I was so adamant to avoid my family’s line of depression that I refused to believe.

So knife play wasn’t a good idea for us because we were taking what should’ve been an isolated pain or pleasure experience and somehow using it to deal with what was bubbling underneath. I mean, I can’t speak for her, I’m just guessing at this point based on experience with her then and experience as an adult now. And, you know, my own personal thoughts.

The final straw came when I stabbed a pair of scissors into my arm. I could actually hear the skin pop as it was torn open. With that, I broke down, angry and ashamed and disgusted at myself. Nothing I can write will convey how torn up I was by this action.

So I stopped and never looked back on doing it again.

Could I engage in knife play? I could – to an extent. There would have to be limitations – no blood, for starters and no actual cutting so I guess it’d be more in line with role play – and I would initially struggle to not picture the moment with the scissors, but I could.

Yet I still struggle with thoughts of suicide. Sometimes I can picture – so vividly in my mind – hanging myself in the garage – but when such times come, I try to think on hope, try to remind myself I have family, I have a life – I have a beautiful lady who I would forever shatter if I did such a thing. And I think how my suicide would make the lives of my dearly loved so empty that my heart hurts and stills my mind.

So. Two things – if you’re like me and knife play has become a fetish, stop and be clear on why you are doing it, think on how healthy it is, think of ways in which you can explore alternative methods of pain and pleasure. Be sure as to how safe and controlled you are.

If you’re anxious and depressed and suicidal, remember you’re not alone. There’s no shame in seeking help, from your local help line, from a friend or family – or if you don’t have anyone, from me. You are never alone, no matter what.

This extends to anyone reading – be you new reader or old, regular lurker or new lurker, someone who has been trying to write the ‘perfect’ email instead of a rambles or if you think you are too old or young or whatever – please – if you want to write, if you need to write, just put it down all at once. You’re writing to a guy with a floordrobe so don’t worry about a mess – i don’t judge.

Be kind to yourselves and remember how important you are to the world.