Chapter 2 - Conflict of Interest

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How long can a man deny his nature?

I spent years pretending that it was just a fantasy - that I was really quite normal and that ropes and cuffs and chains and gags held no more meaning to me than a grade school crush.

I played the role of the nice guy, and I played it well.

My urges were, I told myself, a manifestation of a baser instinct. I believed that the pain and debasement that I wanted to spill upon the world were nothing more than a reaction against my own insecurities, and every time I had dirty, raunchy, wonderful sex, I was flirting with a path that would lead to self-destruction.

There are two phrases that ran through my mind almost constantly during this period. The first was, and long before the Spiderman movie muddled its provenance, "With power comes responsibility". The second, a bastardized and abbreviated Hippocratic oath, the form stolen from Shakespeare: "Above all else, do no harm."

These two together tempered my behavior to the point where, while others my age were going wild, I was exercising as much restraint on myself as I could, and with no other apparently viable outlets, that self-restraint was often literal.

All the while, my toy collection grew.

Self-bondage, I have to say, does very little for me. Bondage for me is a means of control - a tool in the repertoire, not an end unto itself. I appreciate it as an art form, and aspire to learn everything I can about it, but simply being bound and left to wait for some ice to melt gets very boring for me very quickly.

With it as my only remaining tie to the world of kink, I was bound to keep trying, and I did - and I escalated. Rope, while beautiful, is inefficient next to well-built locking leather cuffs, half-inch chain and some padlocks, and I was going for utility.

My release mechanisms got more complex, using multiple steps with multiple keys. An inflatable hood, stronger nipple clamps, too small CBT straps, and an overinflated butt-plug came into play.

It was all about making myself more and more uncomfortable. I heaped on more pain, more confinement, longer imprisonment, and more frustrating release. All in an effort to see - just to see - if that endorphin rush was possible. I needed to know because I needed to decide, once and for all, whether or not it was just a fantasy.

Finally, unfulfilled and despondent, I put it all away.

I settled for another life.