Erica Scott: Life, Love and Spanking

Ruminations, opinionated observations, darkly humorous blathering and the occasional rant from an outspoken spanko and unapologetic attention wh–, um, hog.

Archive for the category “submission”

If not “brat,” then what?

As I expected, once the Shadow Lane party was over and the situational camaraderie dissipated, FetLife returned once more to its usual state of arguments, accusations and pontifications. I haven’t been on much, mostly to “like” pictures or wish a kinky friend Happy Birthday. But last week, I admit I got caught up a bit with one person’s essay on yet another subject that’s been done to death: Brats, and how much domly doms hate them.

This guy really let it fly, with a long, scroll-down post, basically taking all bottoms who aren’t purely submissive and painting them with the same broad brush — they’re obnoxious, they’re destructive, they’re nasty, they’re demanding and manipulative, they care only about themselves, etc., etc., blah blah blah. Oh, and how put upon the poor tops are, having to tolerate their behavior.

“Dominant” is not spelled “D O O R M A T,” he exclaimed.

No, it isn’t. In your case, pal, it’s spelled A S S H O L E.

Look, I know about the kind of brats he’s talking about. Yes, they can be annoying, destructive, manipulative. I have news for this guy, though. These particular bottoms aren’t brats. They are narcissists. Some of them are borderline psychotic. And yes, they are to be avoided. But to paint all playful, provocative, spirited and clever bottoms into the same corner with the nut cases is egregiously unfair.

I confess, I couldn’t resist adding my own comment. (The posting has received 140 comments so far, spanning the spectrum from “Hear hear!” to “Screw you.” This was my contribution:

Not all brats are destructive, willful monsters. And not all tops hate bottoms with a bit of spirit.

But it’s OK. We get it. Some Doms don’t want to have to make the effort to engage in a battle of wits with a clever provocateur. Some Doms don’t want to hear any words other than “yes, sir.” And the only time an Uber-Dom wants to see a sub’s tongue sticking out is when she’s about to suck his dick.

Don’t like brats? By all means, avoid them. But there’s no need to malign them so thoroughly.

(snicker) I waited with bated breath for the fallout on that one. But it didn’t come, amazingly. One person commented “Well said,” and another called me a “fabulous wordsmith.”

This post, however, is not about good brats vs. bad brats and who hates them and who loves them. This is about the term itself: Brat. The very word conjures up negative images. Spoiled kids, whining and stamping their feet. Defiance, childishness, acting out, tantrums, generally unpleasant behavior.

But what if a bottom doesn’t fit into the quiet, acquiescent, submissive mode that this Uber-Dom prefers? Is she (I’m using the feminine pronoun here for simplicity, but this can include male bottoms too) doomed to accept the opposite moniker of brat? What if she just likes to tease a bit, play, challenge? What if she is clever and funny, rather than obnoxious?

Yeah, I hear you. Labels suck. But they exist, and they’re here to stay, like it or not. So my issue is, people like me need a different name, a different category. Because being lumped in with the brats doesn’t work, and it’s automatically assumed (by some), if we call ourselves “brats,” that we’re going to be “snotty little shits” (one of the many colorful descriptions the post writer used).

Granted, I’ve done and said some pretty awful, bratty things on video. But anyone with common sense knows that the situations in videos and stories are exaggerated to make the bottom deserving of the punishment, and so the viewers/readers will root for the top. However, in my real-life play, I challenge, but I don’t insult. And I won’t be playful with a top unless I sense that he enjoys it.

Here’s a random example of my “bratting.” Years ago at a party, my friend Andy wanted to cane me in one of the suite parties, but he’d left his canes in his room. So he borrowed one from a gentleman named Ben, who had cheerfully offered it up. After our scene (which drew a crowd; this was back in the days when people actually gathered round and watched party scenes), Andy handed me the cane, pointed to Ben across the room and said, “Go bring this back to the nice man, and say ‘thank you, Ben.'” Slowly, I ambled across the room, several pairs of eyes upon me, and when I reached Ben, who was grinning in anticipation, I said, loudly and clearly: “Up yours, Ben.”

Yes, that’s my bratting style. Hardly fits into that nasty picture painted by the brat hater. Bratting is also a matter of degrees. I’ve been known to toss implements across the room. Hardly submissive, I know. But it’s not like I tossed them out the window, into the Dumpster, or into the fireplace. I’m playful. I’m not destructive.

So here’s my question: Can we come up with a term that describes the brats who aren’t really brats? The bottoms who fall between the polarities of must-to-avoid, disrespectful little twits and fully compliant submissives? I like the term “provocateur,” myself. Even the word itself is clever. However, I know it’s a bit of a mouthful, and for simplicity’s sake, I’d rather come up with something shorter. But what? A synonym for provocateur is “challenger,” but that too is awkward.

I’m serious, kids! Language is always in flux, and kink terminology is too. There are always new terms being introduced. Let’s come up with a term for “clever, non-destructive, non-manipulative, respectful and sensible brats.” You know, the ones that make a top want to spank them, not wring their neck.

Thoughts? Put your creative caps on and let me know.

In other news, life goes on. My computer is finally fixed, but my landline is on the fritz again, after being fixed not two weeks ago. John’s ongoing issues at work are worrisome, but my own work is keeping me busy, which is good. No news with my stepmother; I had emailed her asking if she needed anything, but she didn’t reply. And I have another birthday coming up, with all the usual ambivalent feelings. Meh. First world problems. I am stuck here all day waiting for AT&T, so I guess I should get back to work. I will be seeing Steve tomorrow, and he plans to take me out for a birthday lunch. 🙂 There should be a spanking or two in the plans as well.

Because I sure as hell need one. Or two.

Mine, mine, MINE


I am so not a submissive.

Yeah, Erica, what else is new? I dunno, just something that came to mind lately. Not a judgment, not a statement of any sort of superiority. Just a heightened awareness of how very different we all are, within the same overall community.

I copy-edit/proofread a lot of kink erotica. Therefore, I have regular exposure to fictionalized spanking/BDSM relationships. Some of them resonate. Others do not. And one theme I see repeatedly is that of ownership.

I know the secret behind D/s… that the surrender and submission of the bottom is their choice, and they have the control, even though it seems that they’re relinquishing it completely. It’s a dance and a game. But still.

I am so fiercely, ridiculously independent, I cannot imagine having my autonomy taken from me. Or even giving it away willingly.

Oh sure, a little objectifying is fine. We all do it. We all use the word “my.” My love. My sweetheart. My husband, my wife. Steve will often grab onto my bottom as he’s spanking me and say, “This is mine, do you understand?” Sometimes I’ll say, “No, actually, it’s mine.” But more often than not, I’ll say yes, because I don’t want thigh whacks. 🙂

Everywhere I read, everywhere I look, there is something or another about permission. Just today, I saw a spanking photo with a caption saying something about how she had her hair dyed without permission. Um. It’s MY freaking hair, and if I want to cover the gray, or dye it rainbow colors, that’s MY choice.

Maybe it’s a childhood leftover. My mother had so damn many rules and regulations and rigid standards I had to follow when I was a kid. I seethed with anger and resentment, vowing that I couldn’t wait to grow up and make my own choices. I cannot, for the life of me, imagine choosing to give them away again, even if it’s in a fantasy mode.

Yesterday, I was working on a book with a scene where the woman was punished because she touched herself without her top’s permission. This guy was strict. Everything she did, she had to ask first. Permission to speak (during scenes). Permission to orgasm. Even permission to suck his cock. As I got into the intense spanking scene, which was quite hot, I found myself squirming in my chair. Hey, it’s been a while, I’ve been sick, etc.

So I finished working on the scene, got to a good stopping point, and took a little break to take care of business. Yup, the joys of working at home are many. Office coffee breaks ain’t got nothin’ on this girl’s breaks. 😉

Then it occurred to me: Imagine if I’d had to ask for this first? If I had to feel like I’d done something wrong, something naughty, something forbidden, because I hadn’t gotten permission for it?

Nope. Not me. That simply wouldn’t work. I know it’s a dynamic that works for many. Sometimes, I’m almost envious of those who can let go to that extent and allow another have say-so over what they do. Almost. Then I remember who I am and what I own.

I own my pleasure. I own my orgasms. I own my choices in all things. I own my bedtimes and getting-up times. I own my speech, my clothing choices, my hair style. I own my online time, my TV time, my time for anything I want or need to do. I own what I eat and when I eat it (that’s a huge one, for one in recovery for eating disorders).

I will give my love, my devotion, my willingness, my vulnerability, my tears, my laughter. I will surrender my body to painful pleasure. But I will not — cannot — surrender my choices. The day I begin to surrender my autonomy and independence is the day I begin to die.

And perhaps I take all this shizz way too seriously. 🙂

Have a wonderful holiday weekend, y’all. Be safe.

EDIT: By the way, all comments are welcome, even if you are on the opposite end of this submission spectrum. I’d love to hear what resonates with you about it.

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