Friday, November 18, 2016

Love Our Lurkers! A Half a Million Thank Yous!

We have Bonnie at http://bottomsmarts.blogspot.com to thank for Love Our Lurkers Day, and Hermione at http://hermionesheart.blogspot.com/ for taking it over. Every year we get a chance to thank you, our faithful readers, for hanging out, checking out our pics, and (hopefully) reading our words. This year marks the fourth anniversary of Black & Blue and, amazingly enough, our blog has reached 500,000 page views!

Here we are again. Seven years ago I said "thanks, lurkers!" for the first time on my original blog, Dark Musing. Man, a lot has happened since then, most notably the start of this blog that Lizzie and I have enjoyed making month after month for all of you.

As our intro states, we have had half a million page views. The counter clicked over to that number just a few days ago. We are always excited about the number of people that come and visit our site and are always fascinated by the statistics of where people are coming from, how long they stay, and what they read (or look at). (Yay, Google Analytics!)

But I'm a bit gobsmacked by the stat. 500,000 page views! Goodness, y'all. You're either eager to read our side-by-side views of the kink scene, our place in it, our experiences, and our D/s, or you simply love looking at Lizzie's smacked bottom. Either way, thanks.

Thanks to those of you who come for a few seconds just to perv on the latest bottom redness.

Thanks to you Fellow Kinksters who actually stay to read.

Thanks to few who actually comment.

But thanks most of all to our lurkers, who make up the majority of our traffic.

We strive to come up with original content—both in terms of our his/hers perspectives on things, but also in terms of new ideas for entertaining posts. We aren't a "diary blog" per-se. We consider our blog a "channel" and thus try to program it with stuff we know and hope you all will want to read and see.

So thanks! A half a million thanks to be exact!
We know that Lurkers make up the majority of our visitors. Of course, we’re thrilled that you’re here to take a look at our pictures and read the things we’ve written. And we’d love to hear from you - leave a comment or drop us a line by email or message on FetLife or Tumblr.

This year, “Love Our Lurkers” meets another milestone for us - half a million page views. Seeing such a statistic always leads me to Google Analytics, where I pour over the wealth of information provided and wonder about the people behind the numbers.

Google has added a feature that tracks the activity of individual users - while keeping them anonymous, of course. It’s fun to see the people who discover our blog and spend more than half an hour reading through old posts. It’s even more fun to see that some of those people return to read each time we post something new.

Seeing the number of people who stop in for less than 10 seconds on Thursday or Friday when we haven’t posted something new makes me feel bad. We’ve made a habit of posting on those days, so I’m sure they are coming back in hopes of finding something new. When we have a new post, they stay longer to read it. We do our best to keep up with posting, but it can be hard.

Thank you for stopping by - today and every other day. I hope you find something you’re looking for here: a fun picture, an interesting story, or the knowledge that there are other kinky folks out there.

And remember, we’d love to hear from you!

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Bi Serious

Lizzie is bi. Not "bi curious" or "casually bi." She's bi. With Bi Visibility Day on September 23 last month, we thought we'd share our thoughts on being bisexual.

(If you couldn’t guess, Craig wrote his side of this post to be posted for Bi Visibility Day. But Lizzie got caught up in a whirlwind of school and wasn’t able to write her side or post this until today.)

Needless to say, I'm not bi but I love a bi. She's not just playing around. She is as organically bisexual and those who are homosexual. Often people tease bisexuals: "Make up your mind!" "You're not bi, you're an opportunist!" I have been guilty of saying those things myself. But I can tell you this: Lizzie is not "wishful thinking bi."

So what of it? In the lifestyle we look at someone bi as a unicorn—the perfect playmate, partner, or whatever. It's a win/win for the guy, for sure. But what does it mean for the person who's bi? What do they have to deal with and what are their issues? If not a smorgasbord of sex, what is it?

I'd say to any parent who thinks they may have a bi child or if you have a bi friend trying to figure stuff out, first of all: your kid/friend is not an alien. It's not an issue of "confusion" any more than a homosexual is "confused" about not liking someone of the opposite sex. Homosexuality may be "mainstream" now (and we can argue both how mainstream and where mainstream) but is bi different?

Do you want your child/friend to be genuine? True to themselves? Then let them be who they are.

As for that bi individual: what makes them happy? With Lizzie, when we got together and decided we wanted to share our lives with each other I worried: would I be enough? Would she want a female partner as much as she wanted me? We talked a lot about it. She's content with a partner—someone who will take care of her and who she can take care of—but she does miss the company of another woman. Did she need both as partners? She thought long and hard about it and said, "no."

So we continue our days doing our lives, our D/s, and our friendships. I know she doesn't feel 100% content without some aspect of a woman in her life to fulfill that part of her, so she can be her genuine self. And as Bi Visibility Day passes us by, think about the bisexuals that might be in your life and don't assume they are "bi curious." Maybe they're bi.
As a bisexual woman with a heterosexual primary partner, it’s very easy to “pass” as straight. The importance of bi visibility has been on my mind recently as I’ve watched my niece navigate her own sexuality.

I am out to my family - they’ve met the girlfriends and the spanking partners, they know about the spanking parties and the kink events. But it’s not something I’ve felt the need to discuss in great detail or over every holiday dinner. My family is fairly conservative and I’ve never seen any reason to argue about the specifics of my own life. I prefer to discuss the intimate details of my life with, well, the people with whom I plan to get intimate. Or, obviously, the people who come to our blog looking for this perspective.

It occurred to me just how easily I passed when my niece was very tentatively edging around the topic of a girl she liked. I knew the topic was causing strife within her own family, but I hadn’t realized she might not know how open I was to the conversation.

I stopped her and said, “You know I’m not straight, right? I've had several girlfriends. Grandma even met a couple of them.”

My mother being the definition of traditional, my niece’s mind was understandably blown by this revelation. (She’d been too young at the time to take notice of any of these events personally.)

And I realized that maybe I’ve taken this attitude of “I’m living my life; I don’t need your support or opinion, so I’ll just carry on” a bit too far. I don’t need to have a heated debate about the morality of anyone’s sexual choices, but there are people I care about who need to know on which side of that debate I would be found. Because if someone needs support, or needs an understanding ear, or just wants to talk without judgment, I want them to know that I’m there for them.

If you are open and non-judgemental, I encourage you to communicate that to people in your life, regardless of how much of your own experience you care to share. It could mean everything to one person.