Sunday, July 20, 2008

High Maintenance

I've decided I must be a high maintenance client. It's not that my taste in play is particularly extreme. I can't ever remember asking to be suspended from the ceiling by fish hooks and dental floss. I certainly don't come to the dungeon with a script in one hand and a megaphone in another trying to do my best Cecil B. DeMille imitation. And I never ever try and cajole her into doing something she isn't into. In fact, these days, after she gets to know me a little, I like to pretty much leave the scene up to her.

But nevertheless, I think I'm a high maintenance kinda guy. It's not that I ask this upfront, but if our thing's gonna work, I want to be my domme's friend. I want to get to know her. I want to spend time with her outside the dungeon. The rub is that I prefer that time to be untributed. Now, I appreciate that prodommes are professionals and that means it's a pay-to-play kind of deal. I understand that and am a fairly generous guy both with tribute and gifts. But, if she really likes me, doesn't she want to get to know me as a person? Shouldn't that want translate into time spent off the clock? I know, I know ... this has to happen organically. It simply doesn't work to ask, "Will you be my friend?", on the preferences checklist I fill out before we get down to the matter at hand in the dungeon. But an emotional connection is key.

Plus, I want it to be okay that I'm married. I love my wife and while things aren't perfect (otherwise, I wouldn't be Client Nine and a Half now would I?), I'd like to talk about the wife now and again because she's a big part of my life. I'm trying to figure out how, in a very limited way, to incorporate kink into my marriage. Maybe my domme can help.

In addition, I like correspondence. I remember writing to PO boxes, in ink, with a pen, by snail mail. Before the days of email and blogs and googletalk, I used to write letters to dommes. I like getting replies. I'm a bit compulsive when it comes to writing, but sometimes I turn a nice phrase. I admit to being a bit OCD. I know she has a practice and a life. But I like to write and get answers.

I think this all makes for a high maintenance kind of thing. Or does it?

Come on ... we could go out and do the twist ...


Aarkey said...

I don't know that I'd say you are high maintenance because of what you want. You are more like high volume. You've asked for a significant time and energy investment.

That doesn't mean it isn't out there, but as a professional who charges an hourly rate, how many of your clients do you go to dinner with? Enjoy a round of golf or a movie? Spend time chatting about good books?

I know it happens, I have some clients who over time became friends - but I don't know that expecting that to happen would lead to positive results. If interests mesh and we develop a friendship - great. But many of my clients are purely a working basis.

And I suspect it's the same for most hourly rate professionals.

I can understand not wanting to tribute for the "friend" time, but I don't know that your expectation is going to yield positive results on a consistent basis.

Sounds to me like you want a non-charged "GFE" but aren't able to be the "BF" half of that experience.

advochasty said...

Aarkey -

Such a buzz kill ... ;). But of course, you are absolutely right. I can count on one hand and still have fingers left for the number of times I've even had lunch with clients.

It's a difficult conundrum. If I could content myself with life as Client Nine and a Half I'd have it made in the shade. I'm not whining mind you and I'm "enjoying" the process. But my inability to be either free and clear BF or good guy client is kinda frustrating.
I'm messin' with the laws of nature.

Ms. Tara Sterling said...

Aarkey- You give great perspective here.

I have to say that as a Domme who truly enjoys spending time with my clients, as well as corresponding with them outside of session (one of my girl friends likes to joke about my collection of "middle school boyfriends" because of the frequency of some of the calls, emails, and little gifts back and forth between myself and them)- that the best most sustainable relationships I've built involve donations for that time.

Why don't you simply want to set up a situation in which you have a weekly or monthly donation/tribute sent to your domme in exchange for the energy and time she puts in to your relationship? I'd like to know- I think many clients may have similar situations...

advochasty said...

Hey Tara,

I love the "middle school boyfriend" thing. The Max Board has felt like the positive high school experience I never had! I've joked with Aarkey about getting caught smoking in the girls bathroom! ;)

Your thought about a flat rate donation is a fine one and one I've actually discussed a time or two with a domme. I think again it's a matter of chemistry. Do we get along? Will I annoy her or will she find me charming? Will she feel "contractually obligated" or will she actually want to send me the emails and little gifts you talk about?

I'm no freeloader, believe me. And for a good domme, it's not about the money, the business part notwithstanding.

How do you decide when a periodic donation is appropriate as opposed to life on the meter?

The other odd thing I have going-on is I truly love having scene friends who are just friends. After years as just "client" it's sometimes nice to be "just friends".

But then there's that itch ...

BTW ... what do you think of the music Ms. young, hip San Francisco domme? Cool or desiccated boomer? Suggestions?

Miss Troy Orleans said...


That's not high maintenance. That's just disrespectful. If that's really what you want, you need to be on or something. If I spend time with a client non-Tributed, that's because it's MY choice, and at MY instigation. Not because he expects or even needs/wants/hopes for it.

Now, you KNOW my practice is essentially built on fostering that emotional connection and creating a relationship that has more dimension to it than the typical commercial session. Even so, my responsibility and obligation as a professional dominant, as I see it, is simply to provide a safe, sane, and consensual BDSM experience. As a professional, it also behooves me to advertise my services, respond to customers in a timely fashion, and schedule and keep appointments. Period. Anything else you get is lagniappe.

For the record, "If you really like me you'd .... " is one of the most insulting things you can say to a professional dominant. You don't expect a blow job from your Domme because she's not an escort. Why should you expect her to give you marriage counseling? This is my business. My time is the only commodity I really have. Please be respectful of it.

As for friendship: You know what I do with my friends? I call them up at 6pm and say, "Hey, let's meet for dinner at 7" --- and we do. I get on the phone with them and bitch about my mother, my acne, my period, my lover, and my job. I take call waiting. Cancel plans. Forget their birthdays. Go to yoga with them. Fall asleep on their couch. Shop for jeans, housewares, and mascara. I go on trips with them. I introduce them to my friends. I talk with them about things other than kink.

Can you do that? All of it?

advochasty said...


Though I in no way posted this to "top from the bottom", one of the upsides of being a masochist is that I get a little thrill out of being slapped around like this.

Truly, I mean no disrespect by this post, though I do see how it could strike you that way.

Hmmm ... lagniappe ... just looked it up on wiki :) What a wonderful word. Not only are ya knockin' me around for my own good, but yer educating me!

Honestly, I'm not looking for marriage counseling from my domme. I have a therapist for that. My therapist likes me alot. I've known her since I was two it feels like. In the entire time I'm seeing her, I never have had so much as a cup of coffee with her outside of session. No lagniappe either ... :)

But then again, she's never seen me naked, lashed to a bondage table at week three of on-my-honor chastity with a sound probing the business end of my fifty five year old facsimile of serious wood.

But, I hear you. Time is my commodity too and as I said to Aarkey, I don't even do lattes at Starbucks with my clients.

In the end ... this need for an emotional connection is there in me. This need to be some form of friends - (ok, ok, ya got me ... ya can't fall asleep on my couch ... but i'd do any of the other stuff with you) - just is. Rein that shit in all I may ... it is there.

Maybe it'll go away. It's that half step, half desire, half want that has gotten me to Max, gotten me friends (dare I say like you) and gotten me writing this blog. That half step has gotten me to last week for the first time in my life tell a vanilla friend I trust about my years of sessioning and my current "conundrum".

But the half step may complicate, cross boundries unfairly and ask too much.

Man ... I just did the pronunciation of lagniappe ... what a gorgeous sounding word.

Troy, please know that I meant no disrespect to you or any other domme. I sincerely apologize if what I wrote caused anyone to feel disrespected. I have tremendous respect for you and many, many prodommes. As I have found in the brief time I have made your acquaintance you challenge, provoke thought and inspire reflection.

But I don't apologize for wanting a real emotional connection ... one in which mutual, thoughtful lagniappe is heartfelt and not primarily commerce based.

Thanks ma'am for your always incisive, not always easy to hear, unvarnished "youness". I'm honored.