My husband Rad and I attended a spanking party last night run by the Manhattan Spanking Association, a group that describes itself as "an accepting, non-judgmental group for those who share an interest in spanking," which, as far as I could tell, means that we're mainly into spanking but a lot of us like other play, too. And which further means that no one cared that I went topless for a very nice flogging from Rad.
Last week I played pretty hard, got nasty canings from Tony and Ian of Florida Moonshine, and a harsh strapping from Rad, and I didn't know I still would have marks a week later. I love my marks, love the mementos, but I have to go to the doctor this week and now I'm worried he will see them. That part of my anatomy will be exposed, unfortunately.
So, to make a long story short, I decided to top more than bottom at this party. I hadn't done this in a while because I hadn't been "in the right head space." I couldn't figure out HOW to get into the right head space, or why I was in the "wrong" head space, but I think I was being a little self-centered, wanting to get MY needs met as a bottom/submissive, and forgetting that I get OTHER needs met when I top.
Also, I was going through this phase where I thought I would be disappointing my bottoms. Can't say exactly where that came from. But I seem to be coming out of it, finally.
It's kind of a rush when a guy lets me take charge. They are all different, of course, but most of those who play are putting themselves under my control. I listen to what their limits are, their likes and dislikes, and then I begin and I assume authority. I don't ASK how they are doing; I spank them the way I want to spank them and I look at their reaction. I scold, and if they are bratty I take that as a cue to crank it up a notch. If they react a different way, and go "little boy/submissive" on me, I go into loving-but-strict mom mode.
I have a reasonably hard hand, and I'll spank for a while with just my hand unless I know up front the guy can take much more. This generally gives me a good feel for the bottom's tolerance. If he's squirming under just my hand I'll continue with just my hand for a while before escalating to something not-so-severe, like a leather paddle. But if he's barely reacting at all, I'll switch more quickly to another toy and eventually bring out a wooden paddle or the cane.
When I bottom, I enjoy being pushed beyond what I think I can take. I don't know if I always do this with the men I top (some are so stoic they are hard to read) but I try -- and I THINK most enjoy the challenge.