Do you have a fantasy that you haven't yet lived out, even though you want to? That was also the case for Jeanette.
She had explored soft bondage* a bit, been curious and sought out, but it wasn't until 2022 that she had her first experience as a rope model.
*Bondage is also known as fixation or restraint. It means pinning the body and need not have anything to do with pain or dominance.
It's about being in touch with yourself
The first rope experience was also the one that taught her how important it is to look after yourself.
- I actually have a gullible attitude to many things, and I always choose a positive and welcoming approach. That was also the first time I had to be tied up by a rigger. Back then, the welcoming part of me meant that I just followed his idea because I was curious, inexperienced and wanted to experience it.
It was only afterwards that it dawned on Jeanette that it hadn't really been on her terms.
- It was more about fixation, submission and power than the ropes. Because he was much more experienced than me, there was a lot of knowledge on his part that I didn't know about. So I really felt more like a piece of meat than a human being. And it was not nice.
Since then, it has been important for Jeanette to have some form of cohesion with her partners, so she knows that they see her as an equal.
- When it is me who hangs there, then it is also me who is the center, and therefore I decide how much or how little should happen. It's my body and only I can tell how it feels. A rigger who is skilled at his craft will respect this. That type of rigger knows that the model always has the last word.
Secure in my femininity
It is extremely vulnerable to surrender to another human being, especially when you have given that person the power to tie you up.
But the power lies in the surrender, because it is your own decision. Strength is trusting your ability to communicate your needs and that a partner takes your safety and boundaries seriously.
This happens first and foremost through a conversation about boundaries and desires, before a knot is even tied. Next, it's about going slowly and getting to know each other.
- I have my own back and it is my responsibility to respect my boundaries. After all, it is my well-being that is decisive for the experience we share to be a success. And I have learned that over time. I feel enormously secure in my femininity after I have started to stand up for myself so clearly.
It has become clear to Jeanette which types of rigs suit her needs. Because physical attraction is one thing, mental attraction is another. She will not compromise anymore.
- I don't think caveman mentality is exciting at all. I want a partner who actively inquires and listens. It's not about being the biggest and strongest, but about meeting each other at eye level before we actively choose to change roles.
I get the wildest feeling of power
The more experienced Jeanette has become, the more she has found herself in the role of rope model. It is not only about her having to live out a fantasy, but also about being true to herself and her own limits.
- The kind of power I feel in the ropes, I don't get it anywhere else. I actually started this because I was curious. The discovery has been that the ropes invite me to stand by myself. And it has really been a learning process for me. At first I just had to pull myself together to speak up if something was too tight or my finger was asleep, but now I say it without hesitation.
For Jeanette, the feeling of power has become a part of her and something she actively uses in her everyday life. Where she used to find it difficult to speak up, today it is much easier because she knows how important it is to include herself in the things she does, whether it is work or leisure.
The war marks are memories
As a rope model, it is almost impossible to avoid getting marks on your body. It can be markings from the ropes, bruises or even a wound if things have gone a bit wild. Typically, however, most disappear again.
- When I'm in the ropes, I like to actively fight back. A survival mechanism simply kicks in, which I love to experience. I fight for myself, to see if I can get free, and at some point I might choose to surrender. It may give physical marks, but I see them as war marks that remind me that I stood up for myself.
It has also meant that others have seen the marks and asked if she has been injured.
Here she talks openly about how she got them.
- Most people become extremely curious and want to know more about being a rope model. But there are also some who are skeptical. They are usually those who know very little about it beforehand. They confuse it with sex and masochism and think it is a dysfunctional power struggle that I have been lured into trying.
Jeanette has heard all the prejudices and knows that most of it is misinformation and lack of knowledge.
- I am so happy to be where I am today. It has given me so much to be part of the rope community. There are few places where there is as much respect for each other as there is here.
Do you want to hear about the rigger Absalon, who is the one who ties up Jeantte in the pictures? You will find it here.