Jun 212012
 

Christian scoots off almost immediately, leaving Ana high and dry in one of the most emotional moments in her life. Ana’s mother calls, and tells that Ana is obviously upset about a man.

“What’s he done to you?” Her alarm is palpable.
“It’s not like that.” Although it is… Oh crap. I don’t want to worry her. I just want someone else to be strong for me at the moment.

Ana, of course, doesn’t tell her mother what’s really going on, or take her up on her offer to come home and take a break. When Kate comes in, Ana doesn’t tell her either. Ana even makes up a story when Kate wonders why Ana’s butt is tender.

It isn’t clear if Ana is afraid that the Non-Disclosure Agreement, which she signed without reading, will get her into trouble, or if she’s literally afraid of Christian’s wrath, or if she’s just so ashamed by what she’s doing that she can’t tell anyone, or if she just doesn’t realize talking to other people about this could help. Regardless, it’s creepy and toxic.

Another email exchange (which would be a lot easier to read if it were instant messages than emails). Ana finally stands up for herself (though not to his face) and insists that caning is a hard limit. Christian accepts this, then continues with his campaign to micro-manage every detail of her life, starting with getting his bodyguard to sell her car. Instead of resolving the issue, she gets pouty and cuts him off. “I’m not sure I like you anyway, especially at the moment.”

And then this evening, he actually hit me. I’ve never been hit in my life. What have I gotten myself into? Very slowly, my tears, halted by Kate’s arrival, begin to slide down the side of my face and into my ears. I have fallen for someone who’s so emotionally shut down, I will only get hurt – deep down I know this – someone who by his own admission is completely fucked up. Why is he so fucked up? It must be awful to be as affected as he is, and the thought that as a toddler he suffered some unbearable cruelty makes me cry harder. Perhaps if he was more normal he wouldn’t want you,  my subconscious contributes snidely to my musings… and in my heart of hearts I know this is true. I turn into my pillow and the sluice gates open… and for the first time in years, I am sobbing uncontrollably into my pillow.

This reaction is likely a case of sub drop. When the intense physical and emotional intensity of a scene ends, and the bottom has to return to everyday life, there can be depression-like symptoms. Part of aftercare is helping the submissive through this, which is why staying in touch a day or two after a scene is over is a good idea. Despite the name, sub drop can happen to tops, too.

In this case, this is probably a combination of sub drop and the hundred other things that are wrong with this situation.

Somehow, Christian bursts into her room, over Kate’s objections. (How does this guy run a company or do anything else when he keeps running to Ana’s side the moment they have a disagreement over email?)

“Talk to me,” he whispers. “You told me you were okay. I’d never have left you if I thought you were like this.”

I stare down at my hands. What can I say that I haven’t said already? I want more. I want him to stay because he wants to stay with me, not because I’m a blubbering mess, and I don’t want him to beat me, is that so unreasonable?

10 per cent right: he wants to look after her when she’s upset after a scene, which is what a good top/dominant should do. 90 per cent wrong: everything else in this affair, starting with the fact that she doesn’t have to get hit if she doesn’t want to.

“How did you feel while I was hitting you and after?”
“I didn’t like it. I’d rather you didn’t do it again.”
“You weren’t meant to like it.”
“Why do you like it?” I stare up at him.

[…]

“I like the control it brings me, Anastasia. I want you to behave in a particular way, and if you don’t, I shall punish you, and you will learn to behave the way I desire. I enjoy punishing you. I’ve wanted to spank you since you asked me if I was gay.”

Remember what I wrote about the difference between “punishment” and punishment? Ana is definitely not ready for punishment, and probably not ready for “punishment” either.

“So it’s not the pain you’re putting me through?”
He swallows.
“A bit, to see if you can take it, but that’s not the whole reason. It’s the fact that you are mine to do with as I see fit – ultimate control over someone else. And it turns me on.
Big time, Anastasia. Look, I’m not explaining myself very well… I’ve never had to before.

The question isn’t whether she can take it, the question is whether she wants and enjoys it. (Cf. stoicism vs. masochism)

After bringing up the point that Ana is more assertive and expressive in her emails than in person, Christian decides to stay the night in her bed, platonicly spooning her.

“If you are going to cry. Cry in front of me. I need to know.”
“Do you want me to cry?”

I have read erotic stories about mind-controlling, aphrodisiac parasites that don’t creep me out the way Fifty Shades of Grey creeps me out.  Why? Because mind-controlling, aphrodisiac parasites don’t exist in real life. Rich, manipulative, abusive men who have a knack for finding naive, inexperienced, and fearful women do exist in real life.

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