Privacy is a big issue with us. I do not hide the fact that we have to keep our online activity secret from the vanilla world, which really impacts on us being cautious both ways around. But in addition we have difficulties with a different sort of privacy and that is the one that arises in our home. Not the presence of Alexa who watches over us, recording what she will, or the cookies which monitor our online activity and belch out suggestions in a constant stream, but the privacy that a loving and sexually active couple who are into BDSM would like to have from their children.
Yes, good people, there are eyes and ears everywhere in our house. Now, we are an open couple and are pretty sex positive in the discussions that we have with our kids and the sorts of things that we promote. I teach sex ed and so it is an interest of mine and also a belief that we need to improve the sort of ways that sex and pleasure are presented to young people. But that does not mean that in either environment, home or work, it would ever be appropriate for our personal antics to be the topic for talk. Sharing information and opinion is not the same as sharing personal experience, as I am sure any parent will agree.
Finding ways to reflect our power exchange in full view has not been easy and we have had to think carefully about what we do. I had thought when I first researched that a full time Lifestyle wouldn’t be possible for us as everything I read seemed to suggest that I would need to be naked, collared and kneeling most of the time. Clearly this is a fallacy and one that we, and many others like us have disproved. Rules and Rituals need not be overt and wearing a Collar need not be something more than wearing any other piece of jewellery. In our household respect is key and no one really questions the sort of ways that we show that to each other, any more than they question our expectations of them.
Sexually it has been a bit more tricky. Many of the things that we do are not silent activities so we will attract unwanted attention if we try. Spanking is a favourite but not something we are able to use on a regular basis. In terms of impact play, caning and electro-play are the things that have to be in place of not only the hand, but the crop, the paddle, the howler and anything else that would make a satisfying slapping sound as it lands on my arse. The other issue has been around us being quiet and the art of the silent orgasm was something we had to master early on. We try to work around this, although when we have a night alone and can make some noise, play is definitely on a different level.
Being able to play with others around is something that we have addressed through chats on the SWC as well with each other but there has always been a common theme and an air of resignation about working with what we all have. Suggestions of music to cover any noise have been made, and although we do this, the kids quickly caught on to what it signified. The fact that “sexy music to fuck to” showed up as the title of the Spotify playlist HL had last used on the family Sonos system probably didn’t help the air of mystery around us, but at least if they have an general idea, we try to protect them from the specifics.
The do know about some of the dynamic I am sure. Privacy is also an issue when you spend a lot of your time writing, reading and talking on a laptop in a family area. This is inevitable and we would not be able to host two weekly live chats, without the screen being visible to others at points. Working on content to keep three blogs and a meme up to date means that most parts of our online life are on view to those who want to look. This is something that feels a little uncomfortable although we have accepted it and if they have looked, they have kept what they have seen to themselves. Like the sexy music to fuck to, the detail of what happens online is probably something they don’t want any more detail of.
I understand and respect this and would no more pry into one of their lives than I would expect them to pry into mine. I want them to come to me when they need or want help or advice and to see me as a source of information and support. I want them to feel accepted rather than judged so would not push for any details that they did not feel comfortable to share. I may not always agree with their choices any more than they might agree with mine, but I respect their right to choose what they want to do, and feel that I have equipped them with the tools to make sensible choices and decisions, even if they chose a different route than the one I would expect.
I think we try our best as parents to keep our private life private but it is impossible when living in close quarters with others to fully do this. There has to be some give and take on both sides and this is the balance that we hope to strike. I panic sometimes about what they might think and how that might affect my relationship with them, and I will admit that I have had some scares with regards to this. My relationship with my children is far more important to me than my online life, but I do value both and so want to find a way to be able to enjoy each one. If push came to shove I know which I would choose, but I think that they are open enough people who wouldn’t put me in a position where that was a decision that I had to make.