Rika does Vanilla!

Okay, here’s something that I rarely do – have a guest blogger here on The Edge of Vanilla.

Of course, I’ve never asked anyone before, either.

Anyway, long-time web surfers looking for femdom-related readings have no doubt stumbled across the Uniquely Rika web site, hosted by Ms. Rika, a non-pro dominatrix who runs an informational web forum and who has spent much of the last two decades counseling couples who have some interest in exploring female domination. She has a very simple, down-to-earth approach to D/s and her web site is laid out as a safe, easy-to-follow guide that reflects her own development over the last twenty years.

Believing that there was a need for a written guide that presents female domination in a safe way, and one that avoids the stereotypes commonly associated with domination – stereotypes that tend to turn women off to the idea – Ms. Rika recently published a book, “Uniquely Rika,” in order to bring the essential points of her web site to a wider audience.

From the Lulu Publishing web site:

This is NOT your typical D/s manual. Uniquely Rika provides a practical, intelligent, common-sense approach to adding / enhancing D/s in your relationship; with long-termed success. You’ll see how fulfilling the inner desire to serve or be served is within your reach – without having to mask yourself in artificial roles and games.

Ms. Rika explains why several popular approaches fail to last. She then details her approach to creating successful D/s relationships; one which has proven as effective with seasoned D/s players as with those who never thought themselves to be a ‘dominant’ or ‘submissive’.

Regardless of your experience level, Uniquely Rika will provide a new insight, a heightened awareness, and a fresh perspective on D/s that will enhance your relationships, forever. Though written from the ‘female-led’ perspective, the concepts are applicable to any loving partners.

If you’re serious about a lasting and meaningful D/s-based relationship, you’ll want to read “Uniquely Rika”.

Okay, enough with the jibber jabber. Ms. Rika agreed to be interviewed by the staff here at The Edge of Vanilla, and our diligent writers spent considerable time in researching in order to come up with questions a little more engaging than “What is your favorite color?” or “What is the average airspeed of a swallow?”

EoV: Self-styled femdom experts are all over the net. What’s your angle on this? Why listen to you, or in this case, read your book?

Ms. Rika: There is so much literature out there on D/s and BDSM, unfortunately, it’s mostly designed to sell to the male-centric fantasy of the whip-wielding, leather-clad, ego-centric bitch. As a fantasy, it’s not such a bad thing; I, too, enjoy the role-playing, dressing up, and scene-games from time time.

However, the problem arises when men who recognize an inner desire to submit mistakenly try to convert this fantasy into a full-time lifestyle, without regard to their partner’s personality. They turn to their wives or girlfriends and try to convince them to take on the role of Dominatrix. The problem is: their partners are seldomly whip-wielding, leather-clad, ego-centric bitches (if they were, the guy wouldn’t be the one initiating the lifestyle, would he?)!

Men need to identify their true inner needs. Do they want to serve a woman who recognizes her position of dominance? Or, would they rather just be ‘done’ while helpless to resist? The former serves the woman… the latter serves the man.

If a man has a true inner desire to serve – and to be subservient to – a woman who openly recognizes and accepts her position of dominance, then he needs to commit himself to learning how to submit to her unique desires and needs. He needs to be taught how to serve the unique woman who has accepted his service.

“Uniquely Rika” addresses this problem from both the male and female point of view. It discusses in depth why other approaches to D/s fail in the long run, and why they often leave the partners dissatisfied and resentful. It then takes a practical approach to creating a long-term dynamic that is layered on top of the relationship, one that works for both parties.

It works because it is rooted in the basic foundations of relationships and open communication of intent. It works because the unique needs and identities of both parties are addressed and preserved. There are no roles to play, no protocols to follow (we leave those concepts to playtime, where they still exist with all their glory!). In my perspective, D/s extends the relationship, it does not replace it.

The book provides a new and different look at D/s that I believe both experienced and novice D/s partners alike will find invaluable.

EoV: What kind of personal information would you like readers to know in order to make them feel comfortable with your style of domination? What works for you and your husband? What did not work for the both of you, and how did you resolve it?

Ms. Rika: When I first realized that I enjoyed dominating men, I was 12. It’s a long story which I’ve told online many times, but I realized having a male at my mercy excited me. I took on the roles and played the scenes. Still, I always felt a little empty. I always realized the men were getting what they wanted and I was judging my “success” on their reactions! It was all about what I did to him or made him do. It didn’t feel like I was the one being served.

Over our 20 years of marriage, my husband and I migrated from the fantasy-oriented, male-centric BDSM scenes to the more practical service-oriented, domme-centric lifestyle of D/s. Neither of us have ever been happier. Now, D/s is about what he does for me, not what I do to him. We judge the success of the D/s dynamic on how satisfied I am; and on how good a job he does in anticipating my needs and fulfilling them.

Sure, we still scene, but that’s playtime – a gift from me to him. “Uniquely Rika” spends a lot of time on gifts, and explains why playtime is so different than real time. It also addresses why gifts are different from – and better than – rewards.

EoV: You claim to be a lifestyle domme. Have you ever subbed? If so, what drew you back to the top side?

Ms Rika: I’ve not subbed for very long. I’ve done a few scenes which I didn’t enjoy. I’m defintely not submissive!

EoV: What made you decide to write a book? What’s different about your approach than we might read in some of the other books out there?

Ms. Rika: Over the past 15 years, I’ve been refining this approach. Starting back in the days of Compu$erve’s channel 12, through Yahoo Groups, and most recently my own forum (www.msrika.com) I’ve been learning what’s in and on the minds of submissive guys and dominant women around the world. I have been reshaping their minds for many, many years through common sense, irrefutable logic, and an empathy for their true inner needs. I felt the approach had matured enough to put it all together into a single reference; a reference sadly missing on today’s shelves. I wanted it to be out there, generally available!

EoV: Can you give some examples of situations in which you’ve helped others?

Ms. Rika: There are many couples who came to my forum; usually it’s the guy who tells me his wife can’t dominate him “correctly”. I just love that. It doesn’t take more than a short conversation to make him understand how what he’s asking for is for only himself; a very self-serving and selfishly motivated request hidden in mock-subservience. In most cases, we can delve into what he really needs at his core; sometimes it’s a “do me while I’m helpless” scene, but more often he really does want to submit and serve. When it’s the latter, I help them – sometimes over a period of a year or more – to learn to serve and self-discipline… and they are so much happier! It’s very rewarding for me.

The contact sometimes comes from a woman trying to become her husband’s fantasy domme. As I point out in “Uniquely Rika”, there is no way to keep up with a man’s fantasy; it’s an ever-escalating, ever-modulating, unachievable goal that will swallow up her identity and leave her very unsatisfied. I have to help her understand this, and that the key to happiness for both of them is for her to assume a truly dominant and confident role and openly accept his submission on her terms.

I go into detail on all of this in the book – there’s a lot to it.

EoV: Here’s a question that I think will be the most interesting to the male readers. What can a man do if his partner seems to be hopelessly vanilla?

Ms. Rika: Read “Uniquely Rika”! Seriously, there is nobody who is “hopelessly vanilla”. The battle for a successful D/s dynamic is not about teaching the woman to be a fantasy dominatrix, it’s about teaching the man how to serve the unique needs of his partner! Once the dynamic of service-oriented D/s is properly established, everything else falls into place. His actions towards her are based in his intent of service and she accepts them from a position of dominance.

This happens because they’ve openly communicated and accepted the intents of their actions. The roles and games of playtime become gifts for the man… gifts his partner can feel comfortable giving whenever she wants, because she knows she’s playing a game in the context of her own generosity.

And if she happens to be a closet whip-wielding, leather-clad, ego-centric bitch – he’s going to find that out very, very quickly! But the chances are that he’ll just be more satisfied than he could ever have imagined simply serving the needs of the woman he loves.

EoV: I see your site – and presumably your book- aimed at newbies or mainly-vanilla couples. Why do you believe that your book has something to offer experienced D/s players?

Ms. Rika: There are two reasons: one as it relates to the nature of service-oriented D/s and the second as it relates to the “male-centric” activities section of “Uniquely Rika”.

Firstly, the interesting thing about service-oriented D/s is that it doesn’t matter what the action is, the power exchange itself is the context in which all actions take place. Remember, the focus for the submissive guy is to learn to please his partner. If the dominant partner is most happy when torturing him, then it is his duty to learn how to suffer for her. If she is not into that, he must give her whatever else she needs and wants.

Even if it’s a seemingly non-kinky activity, the fact that it’s based in the power exchange and that he offers it with the intent to serve and that she accepts it from her position of dominance, it will be D/s-based and charged with the excitement of power-exchange activity!

Whether you’re a pure-service partner getting your clothes folded or a BDSM-aficionado enjoying the pain you’ve created for your sub, the power exchange is the same! The difference lies in the individual and unique likes and desires of the dominant partner. “Uniquely Rika” makes this clear – the concepts are suitable to all people regardless of the degree to which they are involved in traditional BDSM activities!

Secondly, “Uniquely Rika” covers gifts and playtime in depth. Topics that fall under this category tend to be more male-centric and include chastity devices, tease and denial, educational scenarios, a little bit on bondage, and a bit on post-orgasmic torture. I think that the fantasy-based players will find these topics both interesting and educational.

EoV: What is the average airspeed of a swallow?

Ms. Rika: Did you mean a European or African swallow?

Despite the fact that she considers chastity devices to be sex toys – a view which I can’t really dispute – I’ve always liked Rika’s approach. Back when Mrs. Edge took an interest in wanting to learn about the subject, Rika’s web site was one of the resources to which I pointed her. I also look in on the forums at her website, on which Ms Rika usually takes the time to reply to just about every question.

Her book is available at Lulu, and will shortly be available in the mainstream outlets (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, etc.). Considering some of the books on female domination that have been published in the last few years, I’m sure that it will be a welcome edition addition to those who are looking for a safe and sane introduction to the lifestyle.

Ms. Rika, thank you for taking the time for this interview. The staff here at The Edge of Vanilla enjoyed working with you, and we wish you continued success.

About Tom Allen

The Grey Geezer Dauntless defender of, um, something that needed dauntless defending. Dammit, I can't read this script without my glasses. Hey, you kids, get off my damn lawn!
This entry was posted in BDSM, Chastity & Orgasm Denial, D/s, D/s & BDSM, Female Dominant, Female Led Relationships, femdom, Femdommery, Fetish, Fetish & Kink, FLR, intimacy, Marriage & Relationships, Media, Relationship, relationships, sensuality, sex, Sexual & Sensual, sexuality, Sexuality & Relationships, Submission, The BDSM Thing. Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to Rika does Vanilla!

  1. roo-roo says:

    It comes across as extremely sexist when people say “male fantasies are bad; female fantasies are good”. I understand that the whole 24/7-in-leather-all-the-time thing doesn’t work. But a lot of people use that as an excuse to not make an effort at all, instead sitting back saying “gimmie gimmie gimmie” without much regard to their partner’s happiness. The way I see it, both people should be getting their needs met, and both people should be making an honest effort to please the other…….regardless of who’s dominant or submissive, regardless of gender. A d/s relationship is still a relationship; and compromise is part of any relationship. To dismiss someone’s fantasies just because they’re kinky and spicy is insulting, especially when you try to replace those fantasies with “this is what your fantasies should be.” Some people actually enjoy bdsm.

    And if playing is a one-sided gift, that’s pretty sad. I (and most others I know) play for mutual enjoyment. Both people get something out of it. It’s not just something one person does for another.

  2. Ms. Rika says:

    roo roo,

    Tom tells me you’re a very reasonable man, so I’d like to address your response. I must tell you, we are in agreement on almost everything you said – but I never said what it seems you think I did!

    For one thing, I never said male fantasies were bad. I said trying to make a woman become a male fantasy figure (or for a woman to try to become a fantasy figure) – if she doesn’t see herself that way – will fail in a 24x7x365 relationship. Now, you may not want such a relationship…you may only want to have scenes from time to time…fine! If both partners agree, for scene-based activities, it’s fine! But when discussing 24x7x365 D/s relationships (the topic of my book), you cannot expect your partner to assume a role she does not view as herself. To expect her to be someone she isn’t or to give up having sex the way she enjoys it would be one-sided. There would be no compromise there. I honestly don’t think you’re suggesting that.

    Also…I never once mentioned female fantasies! I don’t think anyone’s fantasies are better or worse than anyone elses…much less gender-based.

    It sounds like maybe you’ve seen men frustrated by women who have refused to act out some fantasies…and that’s really not fair. I agree that couples in a relationship should try – whenever tollerable – to act out each other’s fantasies…in a relationship both parties should have their sexual needs met. We are in full agreement.

    But is that submission? Is that D/s? I argue not.

    I may not have been able to make my point as clearly in the interview as I do in the book, but fantasy fulfillment is something that comes from the underlying foundation of every relationship, NOT from the D/s dynamic! A couple can act out BDSM scenes just as easily as they could have a threesome or have sex in public places! You don’t have to be in a D/s relationship to carry out BDSM scenes. Nor does being in a true D/s relationship stop you from having those same scenes! I’m not saying that at all!

    When you layer on a D/s Power Exchange, IN ADDITION TO the things you get from any relationship, you now have the additional dynamic of one person committing himself to the will, happiness, and desires of the other…AND the additional dynamic of the other agreeing to be an active player in the power exchange and accepting that submission. There are responsibilities on both sides of this exchange – I go into them in depth in the book – While they are equal in importance, they are not identical commitments.

    I will stress this: A power exchange does not commit a woman to dominate a man as he sees fit…it’s not a contract for fantasy fulfillment!

    Let me use my own relationship as an example:
    It pleases my husband to know he makes me happy. It pleases him to have his efforts received from a position of dominance. He considers receiving acknowledgement of his service a positive and pleasureable experience. He does not do these things in the hopes of getting payback or scenes – the happiness he gets in knowing he’s served well IS his payback. This is agreed in our power exchange. I agree to accept and acknowledge his efforts, educate him on how to serve me better, and be an active partner in our exchange. That is OUR version of the power exchange.

    That said, he also loves feet, loves bondage, and loves-to-hate orgasm control. But in the power exchange, none of these things constitute service to me! I don’t see the benefit in them…at least not from my perspective as the dominant partner. However, I’m also in a standard relationship …and so, when I choose to give him a gift, I really ENJOY playing with his fantasies! I like to tie him up, tease him, deny him, and make him earn every bit of pleasure I allow him! I get pleasure from it too…so it’s not one-sided at all! In this case, both of us understand that these scenes are playtime relative to our power exchange commitment. I don’t HAVE to do these things…I do them because of the nature of all healthy relationships…the desire to see your partner happy.

    So, in a very long way, I am in agreement with everything you said! I think you misinterpreted my intent and if you go back and read it more carefully, I think you’ll see I’m really not an evil ‘my way or nothing’ person! 🙂

    I also suspect that,if you read “Uniquely Rika”, you would no longer see it diametrically opposed to your views!

    – Rika.

  3. maymay says:

    Rika, I’ve always agreed with just about everything I’ve ever read of yours, with the acknowledgement that some of the things you counsel people towards are not for me. Most succinctly, I would disagree with you when you say:

    I agree that couples in a relationship should try – whenever tollerable – to act out each other’s fantasies…in a relationship both parties should have their sexual needs met. We are in full agreement.

    But is that submission? Is that D/s? I argue not.

    Because I argue yes, that is submission. Of course, it is not submission (or dominance) to perpetuate an unbalanced—and unfair—give and take dynamic, but that is the domain of the whiney, “my wife isn’t dominating me correctly” men, which neither roo-roo, Tom, or I, are so it can be said to be neither here nor there.

    The bottom line is that we’re all in agreement about the fundamentals: make sure it’s working for you and your partner—because if either of those pieces are missing, it’s not going to work at all.

    We’re just saying it in different ways, because the ways in which it works for ourselves is not identical. But what else is new? 😉

  4. Pingback: Ms. Rika’s interview « Devastating Yet Inconsequential

  5. susans.pet says:

    When we run across someone who appears to have similar opinions on a subject, we agree with her totally. When we run across someone who has different opinions, we are critical of her. It is a circular, nonsensical evaluation, yet there is no emotional way around it.

    I believe that I have read everything that Ms. Rika has published with the exception of the book discussed here (I am planning to buy that). I agree with about 98% of what she says, and I don’t remember the remaining 2%.

    I know that she has shaped my approach to D/S and FLR to a certain extent. What I don’t know is whether I was already of the same opinion, and it was just natural to agree with her.

    Within a relationship scenarios and partial fantasy fulfillments come and go. Unless the expectations of the partners are based on the support of the relationship rather than the scenario, the relationship will not last. I read several blogs, and I am not critical of any. However, I more readily accept personal advice from those who have had a longer relationship than those who have just started. Even excluding the religious and female superiority issues Ms. Rika is an obvious success in the field, and can teach us much.

  6. susans.pet says:

    Tom,

    On an urelated subject…. If your writing were not entertaining, witty, funny, provocative, and sexually thrilling, I probably would not waste my time reading it.

    I just finished reading the May 1, 2007 post. You have the sense of humor and writing style that I enjoy. Damn, even better than mine. But I am working on it.

    Just don’t take this as if I had the hots for you. Hairy old man don’t do it for me. It takes one to know one.

  7. Tom Allen says:

    SP –
    When we run across someone who appears to have similar opinions on a subject, we agree with her totally. When we run across someone who has different opinions, we are critical of her.

    There is an adage that what most people want is not news, what they want is olds, that is, some validation of what they already knew or suspected.

    And it’s okay to have the hots for me. Really. I don’t mind.

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  10. Ranai says:

    Ms Rika’s domain name appears to have been usurped by some generic chat site. To read the old version, you have to use http://www.archive.org . Ms Rika, if you’re currently working on new or revised texts to put up somewhere else on the net, I hope you’ll post a pointer when you’re done.

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  12. Ric C says:

    The book is worth buying. I think it adresses mostly to man searching to live their kink appeal with a maybe vanilla wife but it is of interest to anybody who wishes to work their fantasy with their mate without risquing deception or jeopardizing the relatiosnhip.

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