In the beginning I am at a loss about why sex leaves me cold, I can only figure that something is messed up in my head to make me indifferent to a man’s touch. Before I ever have sex I am brimming with anticipation, I am thrilled at the thought of making love, but as soon as I actually open my legs to fuck, the spark is extinguished. I never manage to have an orgasm with Louis or any of the boys at college, or later with Geoffrey or Peter or Stephen. I become very good at writhing in fake ecstasy, though. I find that if I don’t pretend to come my partner feels bad and just keeps hammering away trying to score a big one on my body.
I tell myself that at least I can masturbate so it isn’t as if I’m missing out completely, it’s a relief to have some erotic instincts. Those erotic instincts, my sexual inner life, are interestingly all about rape and bondage, I dream about such things long before I reach puberty, when I am flat chested and wear saddle shoes and glasses and am the least erotic looking chick you’ll ever see, and when I get a little older and read novels my fantasies get more elaborate.
By the time I get to college it is clear to me that I am never going to find a man who arouses me in real life. I have no choice but to box up my fantasies and hide my crazy frigidity behind a facade of normal desire.
Matters are a bit different with Karl. It isn’t that he understands or shares my fantasies, but more that he lends himself to being my fantasy. Not willingly, perhaps, or even consciously, but he is a blank screen where I can project whatever I want. For years, I never fuck Karl without imagining that I am tied up.
When I first get involved with Karl I give him my worn copy of the Story of O, he flips through a few pages and puts the book to one side. If it speaks to him at all, its in an inaudible whisper. Later, I am able to interest him fleetingly in the Joy of Sex, a modern hipster Kama Sutra which includes a short chapter on bondage, it makes bondage seem like just an interesting experiment. I persuade Karl that if he ties me up the way they show in the book, he will get more sex. Not in so many words, but that is the gist.
Karl never gets comfortable with bondage, he just doesn’t understand it at all, how I can like being restrained. He feels like a bully, rough and distant. The more he resents having to participate, the more selfish I feel, but I am reluctant to give up this pantomime, it is all I have.