Thursday, February 26, 2009

Age Play (Part Three)

Part Two

Aside from reissuing the Age Play Is Not Pedophilia disclaimer [Age play has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with pedophilia. Age play has nothing to do with actual biological children. It’s about adults playing with the concept of age as it relates to themselves. Legal adults pretending to be kids. And legal adults interacting with other legal adults who are pretending to be kids. Any sexual age play has no interaction with actual children.], I’m not writing recaps of the previous installments in this series of posts.

Once all five (or four, or six, or whatever the final count ends up being) posts in the series are up on the blog, I’ll go back and post ‘Previous’ and ‘Next’ links in the Age Play set, so that you can more easily jump from one to the other. But the thought of trying to write recaps makes all the hair on the back of my neck stand up.

Age Play and X Play

Sometimes, age play is fused with another kind of role play. When I was at Inky’s age play slumber party last month, I got to see photos of some AB parties that Inky and Baby E (not his real name) had attended in the past. And a lot of the people at those parties were biological adult males whose personas were those of baby girls. Age play and gender play, rolled into one.

This is also where we run into the concept of nested roleplay. Personas built like those Russian nesting dolls, one inside the other.

30 year old Maria plays 8 year old Mary. 8 year old Mary plays the kitty-cat Ginger. At first glance, it just looks like Maria doing pet play, pretending to be a cat. But it’s actually something far more complex than that.

Adults don’t pretend. That’s what we’ve been taught to believe. Adults can lie. They can ignore. They can write stories. But none of that is ‘pretending’. Because pretending is something that adults don’t do – unless they’re interacting with little kids, and then it’s just something that they’re doing to humor them. The adults aren’t actually pretending, they’re just helping the kids to pretend. (The concept that the facts of the previous sentence would indicate that the adults are pretending to pretend would be lost on them.)

So, for a lot of people, they don’t pretend. They can’t pretend. I’m not saying that they’re not capable of it, I’m saying that it’s something that most people simply can’t bring themselves to do. Like committing murder, or voting for Ralph Nader. Yes, it’s physically possible, but you just CAN’T do it.

Role play during sex is easier. It’s behind the closed doors of the bedroom, so no one will ever know except you and your partner. (Unless either you or your partner are blabbermouths . . . or bloggers, which is kinda the same thing.)

Kids, on the other hand, pretend all the time. Let’s pretend. Make believe. Good guys and bad guys. Let’s run a nice clean political campaign. (Hee hee! Not even kids play that one – it’s way beyond simple suspension of disbelief, even for the imagination of a child!)

Kids pretend. Age players want to reclaim aspects of childhood, which mean that littles should strive to pretend, too, right? And therein lies the age play combination plate. A little age play, and a little of this. Maybe a little of that. And some of these kinks and fetishes for good measure.

Pet Play

I’ve seen kids on all fours insisting that they were dogs. Sometimes in English (“I’m a dog!”). Other times in dog (“Arf! Arf!”), refusing to break character to explain themselves if you didn’t get it from the barking.

I’ve never witnessed adult petplay. (At least, I don’t think I have. I’ve seen a few people on all fours, being led around the KinkFest dungeon on leashes. But I think that was just plain old collar and leash fetishism.) I have, however, heard (or read in posts online) people talking about how ‘even if they were into that’ it’s not something that they could ever bring themselves to do.

Okay. So, a lot of adults just couldn’t bring themselves to pretend to be a dog. Or a cat. Or a pony. Or somebody’s pet alligator.

But a kid? Kids do that stuff all the time. And if kids do it, then littles no doubt do it.

So if an adult is interested in pet play – but wouldn’t ever do it – and is compelled to do age play . . . then why wouldn’t their age play persona pretend to be a pet?

It’s like the early days of Spider-Man. Peter Parker was shy. Quiet. But once that mask went on his head, then he could crack wise, insult villains, and even mouth off to Peter Parker’s boss. Why? Because Spider-Man could do things that Peter Parker couldn’t.

Spider-Man is a persona. And age play is a mask. A little can do things that an adult (note the use of the word ‘adult’ instead of the corresponding ‘big’) cannot. Like running around on all fours barking.

Gender Play

I’m not really sure how old I was when it started. Five or six, maybe. But there came a point at which I started playing with my cousin a lot. Actually, it’s not so much that I was playing with her as it was that she was spending a lot of time over at my house. And actually, she wasn’t so much my cousin as she was just me in a wig.

How a wig ended up in my toybox, I couldn’t tell you. But somehow one did. A brown, curly wig. For awhile, it was just a generic hairy monster. (And the world’s worst hand puppet. Scuttle along, scuttle along. Roar.)

But then one day I put the thing on my head and went downstairs. I went into the kitchen, where Mom was doing dishes. And when Mom saw me, she asked, “And who are you?” At which point I introduced myself using a female name (a name I can’t remember, which bugs the Hell out of me), and told her that I was ‘my’ cousin. And Mom, God bless her, ran with it. Whenever I wore the wig, that’s who I was.

In my memory, my cousin hung around for a long, long time, but I have reason to doubt my memory on that. For one thing, if Dad would have ever caught me pretending to be a girl, he would have gone ballistic. (I do remember that whenever my cousin was around and it was time for Dad to come home, Mom would tell her to go upstairs and tell ‘me’ to come down.) I figure that it probably went on for about a month or so. I know that at one point the wig simply disappeared. I thought that I’d misplaced it. Lost it. I have a feeling it was taken from me. Anyway, the cousin went away.

And that’s one of the things that children sometimes do. A lot of parents freak out when kids play a form of ‘make-believe’ that puts them in opposite gender roles, but there are apparently child psychologists out there who assure us that it’s a normal developmental phase.

And when done in an age play context, this could be another case of an interest in crossdressing that you can’t bring yourself to indulge. But something that can affect the dress-up and make-believe of your age play persona.

It could be a female with a tomboy persona, or a male with a ‘sissy’ persona. (Little boy who ended up as a living doll for his older sister, who was really hoping that Mom would have had another girl.)

Or, it could be as simple as the type of gender diverse individuals you find in the world bringing their own gender identities into their age play roles.


CosPlay nested within age play is called ‘playing dress-up’.

You can lay in supplies for this at Goodwill, or in Wal*Mart’s clearance aisle the day after Halloween. Pretend Mommy and Daddy keep you supplied in neat costumes. Or . . . are you thin? Go pick up some Plus-Size/Big and Tall clothing and recreate the whole Dressing Up In Mommy And Daddy’s Clothes game.

Of course, outside of nested play, there are other interesting CosPlay/age play combinations.

Are you male? Is your head either bald or shaved? Heh heh. Get yourself some black short pants, and an orange-yellow shirt with a thick black zig-zag stripe down near the bottom. Then you can do some sexual age play that will make cartoonist Charles Shultz turn over in his grave.

Buy your partner a blue dress (is it a dress? I can’t believe that I don’t have any visual reference for Peanuts here amongst my stacks of crap!) and a black wig. Maybe throw in some fantasy rape. Act out what happens when Lucy pulls away the football one time too many, and Charlie Brown finally snaps.

Or, go the less classic, more modern route. Instead of Charlie Brown and Lucy van Pelt, be Calvin and Susie Derkins. (Or combine CosPlay, age play, and furry, and have a Calvin/Susie/Hobbes three-way. Why, yes, there IS something wrong with my brain, whyever do you ask?)

And while I don’t condone re-enacting Harry Potter erotic fanfic, I suppose there’s nothing I can do to stop you.

The Age Play Yo-Yo

You know what else little kids do? They play house. (No, not House. They don’t pretend to be irascible diagnostic medicine specialists addicted to vicodin. They play house, with a lower-case ‘h’. Try to keep up.) Little girls convince little boys to play husband and wife with them (actually, it’s usually ‘mommy and daddy’ to a doll).

Little kids role playing grown-ups. So what happens when you have age players playing house?

Grown-ups role playing little kids role playing grown-ups. (Yowza.) I said that there would be nesting going on in today’s post. You don’t get a lot more nested than this.

What do little kids really know about being adults? They’ve got jobs, so they’ve got money to spend. And they get to drive cars. Woo-hoo! Being an adult must be great!

Of course, real adults know better. They know about responsibilities. Bills. The price of gas and insurance. Not enough time in the day. Stress. Prostate cancer. More problems than you really want to think about. Escape into age play seems ideal. But playing house? Playing grown-up? That gives you the chance to play the uber-simplified, idealized version of an adult that you always figured you were going to grow up to be.

I sometimes think of it as ‘Jet Pack Theory’. Our future was supposed to be filled with food pills, flying cars, and personal jet packs. An ideal life, but one that didn’t happen. Just like the idealized adult life our younger selves assumed we’d have, but didn’t.

Other Simplified Roleplay Scenarios

Other things that kids play: Cops and robbers. Cowboys and Indians. (Both of which are classically rife with bondage possibilities – the robbers tying up a hostage, or the cops slapping the robbers into cuffs. The Indians tying someone to a tree.)

I played Spacemen and Aliens when I was a kid. Same basic game, but with a sci-fi twist, and based largely on a set of plastic soldier-like toy spacemen I got for Christmas one year. There was also a lot of Superheroes and Supervillains being played.

(Then a couple of years later I discovered Dungeons and Dragons, from which point forward most of my roleplaying activities took place seated at a table with a handful of dice and a player character sheet of some sort.)


Kids will play just about any damn thing. Why? Because kids have wild imaginations. Who else but little kids can go on a crazy adventure in a cardboard refrigerator box?

Unless you have a legitimate reason to be using your imagination (being an artist, or a writer, or having a similar occupation or hobby), it tends to atrophy in adults. They get jobs, stop thinking outside the box, and start watching reality television.

Age play is an excuse to try and rebuild your imagining skills.

[Now that I think about it, it really wouldn’t surprise me if I were to learn that (non-sexual) age play had become a mandatory activity as part of creativity exercises at high-level corporate retreats. Man, someone should put me in charge of high-level corporate retreats.]

The Intersection of Age Play and Other Facets of BDSM

And then there’s all the other stuff that age play might cross over with. There’s lots of BDSM stuff that can get thrown into the mix.

We already mentioned the bondage potential with Cowboys and Indians/Cops and Robbers. But there’s also the Discipline aspect of the classic B&D. Things like a schedule of chores, dinnertime, bedtime. Did you wash before dinner? Did you brush your teeth before bed? If not, there are always punishments that can be handed out, buster.

A D/s age play relationships could be easily summarized by the phrase “Young lady, so long as you’re living under my roof, you will do what I say, is that understood?”

And as for S&M . . . well, you’ve got the whole spanking-as-punishment thing going on. There’s also the emotional edgeplay of introducing pain into an age play relationship to walk the fine line of consensual nonconsensual physical abuse play. Not for everybody, and probably a bad idea for people who were raised by actual abusive parents.

Kids are always getting into stuff. And ending up covered in stuff. Either filthy or colorful. Or both. Playing with liquid latex ‘finger paints’ is a fun idea for body paining fans. Those who are just into the whole wet-and-messy scene can indulge in that as a prelude to bathtime. Food fight, anyone?

Kids are also always falling down and scraping their knees, elbows, and other exposed areas, which makes for a good link with abrasion play. Cuts (cutting), scrapes (abrasion), bruises (deep marking), and sometimes even more serious injuries (bloodplay?) are typical of wild and crazy children running around, screaming like maniacs, bumping into things, and falling over.

And afterwards, a Band-Aid or three to cover up the boo-boos. (Which is also a fetish of sorts. Johnny Dirtnap had that one. Always said that there was very little in this world sexier than a woman wearing nothing but a single Band-Aid. When they started running commercials for the birth control patch – a Band-Aid like device whose purpose was inherently sexual – I thought he was going to cum in his pants.)

I’ve noticed that some toddlers consider running around naked to be one of the greatest joys in life. And while older kids usually wear clothes, they tend to avoid shoes and socks in summertime whenever possible. So exhibitionism, voyeurism, foot fetishism, it can all tie into age play.

Hair fetishism is a good mix with age play. Every thing from littles in pigtails to mean boys pulling hair.

If you really work at it, you can probably find a scenario to connect almost any fetish to age play. One little is so determined to win at hide and seek that he’s not going to call attention to his hiding place no matter what happens. Not even when the little girl – obviously desperate and with no bathroom around – finally goes around the corner to a secluded spot and relieves herself right into the bush he’s hiding in. Age play + Watersports.

Okay. That’s it for now. More tomorrow. (Well, more age play post tomorrow. More blog post in about, uh, four minutes or so.)

Part Four

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