Haven Wilde, On Secrets

contributed by Haven Wilde

“Radical honesty,” I used to say to myself. “That is my road to freedom.” 

I am an experimenter. I won’t tell you about all of the crazy “research projects” I’ve pursued on the path towards enlightened sex and spiritual growth. I’ve lived in a commune. I’ve practiced tantra everyday. I’ve taught women classes in how to stroke cock. And I was completely open about all of it. 

At a party of mostly strangers, when the dreaded what-do-you-do question would come, I answered forthrightly. And I talked about it beautifully! I was a master of spiritual jargon and euphemistic phrases, — but more than that, I was (and am) a true believer! I’m passionate about what I do. It is my calling. And I wanted to be fully seen there.

But there is a dark moment that always came in that conversation. I would see a glaze blur the listeners’ eyes when I described my work. That’s the moment when I realized I had just become porn for them. As they asked overly specific questions and drove the conversation towards increasing titillation, I would think: this is not what I want my authenticity to bring. 

When I started doing dominance work in 2008, I decided to keep it special, for me. Radical honesty was a failed experiment. Of course many people know about my practice as a dominatrix. I’m part of many communities. I’ve worked the Folsom Charity Spanking Booth for the last 6 years and I’m sure you can find amateur pictures of me with a whip in my hand in all corners of the Internet by now. On my website you will see my clearly recognizable face and body. So security is not the real issue. Here’s the real issue: 

It is more pleasurable for me to keep it secret.

Shadow work belongs in the shadows. The glaring light of day can make it look cheap and dull. And it is anything but that! Kept secret, my dominance work has the space to become the mythic life that I want it to be, infused with power. I can expand into the archetypical self that is so much greater than my everyday identity.

I have many friends in the kink community. Sometimes they ask me about my clients. Just making conversation usually, or maybe they’re digging for some juicy tidbits or giggle-worthy anecdotes about someone else’s sexual proclivities. But I never provide that. I don’t want the intensely alive experiences I have with my clients reduced to casual conversation. Other people don’t get it, and I’m not sharing. In the everyday world, secret pleasures are definitely more pleasurable kept secret.   

I’m grateful to this forum that Domina Colette has created, bringing together writers and readers who DO get it.

photo: Haven Wilde