I’m finally able to sit down for a moment and write a post about this conference we attended last weekend.
First let me say that i believe it is the first of it’s kind. A MDHL (Male Dominant Heterosexual Leather) event specifically for those in MD/fs type dynamics. Interestingly there seems to have been some backlash or ruffled feathers within the community that anyone would put on an event of this nature. Some have said that because this type of relationship configuration is more typical that there is no need for a conference or event to support it. To this i say you couldn’t be more wrong. It is precisely BECAUSE this is the more mainstream external that we need support for our obviously “other than mainstream” internal. In other words people in this type of dynamic may not have a tendency towards the same type of concerns that plague the LGBT Leather Community, or the Female Dominant/male slave dynamic – but that does not mean that we do not have our own concerns.
Yes i said our.
Because in reality this is also my community. Not in an “us vs them” way – but in a way that says that this dynamic structure should not be minimized or characterized as being so mainstream as to not warrant it’s own sort of dialogue. The idea of which gives further credence actually to my point. As slave marsha says “We don’t have to play together all the time” and i agree with that. Lately there has been much ado in our community about the differences between Het Leather and Gay Leather. While initially feeling a bit tender that perhaps my Lesbian and Gay sisters and brothers truly did not want us around – we (Master and i) put that aside and really listened to what was being said. No – our experience of Leather is not the same as those in the LGBT community. i have never experienced hatred from others based on who i love. As a POC i’ve been on the receiving end of hatred due to the chocolate-ness of my complexion but never have i had someone cover the eyes of their child as i walked hand and hand with my Beloved. So yes – our experiences in Leather are different. Those differences mean that while we’re all one big Leather family – much like in any family occasionally we’ll want to be in smaller groups – groups of those who are similar. It seems to me that as we’ve become more and more diverse and inclusive – we may have lost the ability to honor that need. TNGers need to be around others of their age sometimes. Female Dominants need to encourage each other by being around other Female Dominant energy sometimes. Gay men need the freedom to play and express in an environment that is exclusively free of vaginas and female breasts sometimes. And – Male Dominants need the freedom to expand Their Masculine Dominant energy – to celebrate that – in an environment where it is not only accepted but embraced sometimes.
BOLD is that environment.
Let me say that the conference is extremely well organized. This was their first year and it was one of the BEST organized events we’ve ever attended hands down. i’m talking top 2-3 events. There was a Dominants track, a submissive track and a couples track. All 3 tracks focused on relationships – something i hope they keep. We have plenty of opportunity to learn Technique here – but opportunities for immersion in a relationship conference is only really available at MsC – so this makes a lovely west coast option.
We presented 2 classes – and as presenters i’ll say you couldn’t ask for better treatment. Some conferences treat presenters rather shabbily in my estimation – making it challenging or less than pleasurable to present there but not BOLD. They truly understand the idea of VIP and handling people the way they wish to be treated. From the greetings, to not having to do our own registration (they brought the paperwork to us) to the basket in the room – there is much to be gleaned and i highly suggest getting in touch with their team if you’re planning an event and want to do it with class and graciousness. Seriously.
We did not get to attend many classes – and i hope there are more classes next year – as well as class slots lasting for 1hour and 30 minutes instead of 1 hour and 15 – but the classes we did attend were VERY good. We took away tidbits and gleanings both in the classes and in the general interaction.
More than all of the tangibles were the intangibles. i looked around the room at one point and i could see the Dominants shoulders were so relaxed. There was no boisterousness or “throwing their Dominance around” that one often hears about – but a different presence of Male Dominant Energy. Something delicious in that there. When i taught my class for submissives/slaves – to look around and see only female faces. No need to “he/she” everything – i could speak elegantly and passionately from the place of my feminine submissive/slave experience without fear of offense. i could actually share how Master and i use our Genders to enhance, elevate and sustain our dynamic – without that being mistaken for being misogynistic or stepping on toes.
We left refreshed and delighted. It was beautiful and we plan to go back next year.
Do we now only want to be around others in MDHL dynamics? Of course not. We love our larger Playground and Community and would never abandon it – but it was nice to find a sandbox of people like us to play with on occasion as well.
In submission and surrender to Him,
~slave namaste 2/25/12