Hello everybody. I’m still recovering from surgery. Although not a cure it did help. Soon I’ll be responding to all your good wishes.
Otherwise, there’s some interesting times to come. It may not be much longer before the decision on the prostitution laws comes down. Then I’ll have plenty to say. That’s primarily what I’m saving up my energy for.
I resolve that this year I will be even more vigilant in following doctor’s orders. I have not been bad, but I don’t have much room for error. That means remembering to eat and drink what I am told and not more or less or other. It also means not waiting until I am run down to rest. I resolve to spend some time each day collecting my written materials for some possible future publications that have been suggested to me. I resolve to remember to tell those around me and who have bought my book Dominatrix on Trial how grateful I am. I resolve to try not to feel sorry for myself or to be afraid.
This year my health was basically static. I am in bad health, but not, as of today, in any immediate danger. I can do little and not get out much, but it is comfortable for me at times to be at my computer, so I have been writing to many people using social media, writing blogs and doing some clerical work for a local business. The highlight of the year was publication of Dominatrix on Trial, my memoirs, in the summer. It is selling around the world and on bookstore shelves. I think it is going to continue to be well received.
I have noticed that over the years more and more people I meet here in Toronto are not celebrating Christmas. When I grew up in small town Ontario, and later Toronto, I rarely met anyone who did not celebrate Christmas. Now I would say at least one third don’t. In my own time there has come to be a huge increase in the diversity of the people in Toronto. Part of that diversity is people who are born Christians and do not celebrate Christmas, or those who dread it as a stressful time of year. It reminds me that society should not impose its values on people. I, of all people, should not need to be reminded.
In my book Dominatrix on Trial I spoke about the many scenes the clients requested. Often they would put their requests in writing. Another excerpt from another letter.
Dear Headmistress. Thank you for seeing me on such short notice. My name is Slave Bob and it is an honour and a privilege for me to serve you. I have been a submissive for approximately 25 years. I am very submissive and I enjoy being treated and trained as a slave. In an effort to be helpful so you will enjoy our time together I have detailed below my likes and dislikes and limitations: tight bondage, strict discipline, humiliation, (especially in front of others), maid service, animal training, nipple clamps.
In my book Dominatrix on Trial I spoke about the many scenes the clients requested. Often they would put their requests in writing. Here is yet another excerpt.
Dear Headmistress. Although I may not meet your requirements as mention in your ad, I am very much interested in your sissy maid training since I am a submissive woman who needs and requires proper discipline training and humiliation. To let you know how I don’t meet your requirements you see I am a post-operative transsexual, which in actuality means I have had my gender changed from male to female a number of years ago. Since my preference is a woman, I enjoy serving women and being disciplined and humiliated when I do not follow instructions properly. I do hope I hear from your sissy academy soon. Until I do, I remain Submissively Sissy Janice
In my book Dominatrix on Trial I spoke about the many scenes the clients requested. Often they would put their requests in writing. Here is yet another excerpt.
Dear Headmistress. I have a few fetishes I should tell you about. They are a leather fetish, rubber fetish, a lingerie fetish a p.v.c. fetish, a vinyl fetish and a fetish for over the elbow evening gloves; and my more intense fetish for thigh high stiletto boots. So please send me your application form and booklet.
Halloween is when people put on masks and costumes. When I have gone to Halloween parties since 1993 I have of course dressed as a dominatrix – with a mask. When the party involved clients they too dressed up as slaves or sissies. One of the great advantages of my trade has been that I have never been short of costumes or disguises. Sometimes my clients would just wear a hood, and so preserve their anonymity in public. Fetish clubs love this time of year and some extraordinary parties take place in Toronto.
In my book Dominatrix on Trial I spoke about the many scenes the clients requested. Often they would put their requests in writing. Here is another excerpt.
Dear Headmistress. My name is —- I am a 40 year old single submissive widower presently living in B.C. All I want is to spend the rest of my life as a submissive sissy cross-dressed maid slave serving a group of older dominant mistresses. I am willing to travel anywhere and move anywhere to serve my mistresses. I would like to be called Stephanie. Please send me your illustrated booklet and application form so I can enrol in your academy and begin my real true calling.
In my book Dominatrix on Trial I spoke about the many scenes the clients requested. Often they would put their requests in writing. I have been asked to share a few with you. In these next few blogs I will share excerpts with you:
I would like you to train me in being a sissy because I have come to the realization that I am a girl and I would like to be trained as a girl. Do we live with each other and do we wear all female clothing and how much is it for a month at the academy? Can you train me as a Sissy Socialite? How is this done, and what is the difference in the cost? I will obey you at all times.
As many of you know I have been tweeting quite often. I started doing so at the request of supporters who wanted me to keep in touch daily. I have found it to be good fun, and there are times I look forward to sharing interesting tidbits. There is also a more serious reason for tweeting twice a day. Soon the Ontario Court of Appeal will release its decision in Bedford Versus Canada – Justice Himel’s decision striking down the laws combating prostitution. There will be plenty to be said then, and much will be said by many very quickly. You can be sure I will be tweeting and blogging then.
What I said in my blog 2 days ago about how I stocked my wardrobes in my houses could also be said about my equipment. I had a couple of clients who were long time S&M enthusiasts, but were also carpenters. They built me a jail cell and some devices clients could be fastened to. Things like chains and fasteners I got at hardware stores. Clients also bought me restraints, harnesses and straightjackets from the fetish stores in downtown Toronto. However I personally selected my whips, paddles and specialty bondage masks. You can see a few photos of the equipment in my book, Dominatrix On Trial.
Some readers of my memoir Dominatrix on Trial have asked me where I got the clothes I wore in the dungeon and so forth. The clothes they are talking about are described in detail in the book and I did make some reference to a couple of the places I shopped. But let me also add here that I was constantly adding, so it was not all bought at the outset. Also, clients brought me items as gifts that they wanted to see me or my staff wear. Finally, it is important to keep in mind that there was a wardrobe selection for the cross-dressers, as well as one for the doms. Most, as I say was bought at the two stores mentioned in the book or given by clients. However, much of what I had, such as leather skirts, boots and gloves, was also bought at second hand stores.
I just turned 52. Several years ago, when I found out that I had advanced Hepatitis C, and began chemotherapy, I knew that every birthday would be something to be grateful for. I look good for my age and feel bad for my age. Most days I can only function for a few hours at most. On special days in the current legal battle I would, as they say, run on adrenalin. On the days after I would have to recover.
Now I must be selective about how I spend my time. I have heard people say that without your health you have nothing. I don’t agree. Without my health, confined to home, I was able to finish my book. That was a great motivator. I also have had many interviews about Dominatrix on Trial, and have tried to respond to the many who have written. I also make a point to keep this diary and tweet. People have told me they are glad I am staying in touch in this manner, and I want to take this opportunity, my birthday, to thank the many who have sent their good wishes and support.
A number of people who have read my book Dominatrix on Trial have written asking about my paintings and whether any are for sale. My paintings range from tribal fetish-like medicine man images to wilderness settings to floral arrangements. Most are in colour. I have never had them looked at by an art critic or appraiser, but am planning to do so at some time. It has been suggested to me that I have an auction. This may happen too. I have never sold any. In my modest home they cover almost all the wall space in the main rooms. Fortunately, the desire to paint more is less pronounced and I have been taking photos and arranging them on my computer with music.
I did little painting in the last couple of years because I was finishing my memoirs and we had the constitutional case. There was, and is, also the matter of those days when I am too sick to do much of anything. I can now only read at most an hour a day and writing is difficult, so I only respond to select e-mails and do a bit of bookkeeping for a nearby business, which fortunately is now routine for me. I can talk and listen without too much trouble and I am able to watch television without too much trouble. But the urge to paint, and the ability to do so comfortably, may return sometime and if it does I’m all for it.
I had 3 dungeons. The first was in Windsor, the small Canadian town near Detroit where I came from. That was in the 1980’s. The second was in Thornhill, basically a suburb of Toronto, which was famously raided in 1994. The third, from 1999 to 2002 was in downtown Toronto. The first was a house with the dungeon in the basement. The top floor was used for the escort service. It was near downtown Windsor. The second was a bungalow in a posh neighbourhood. All rooms on the ground floor and basement were put to use. The third dungeon was a four storey semi-detached house in downtown Toronto. About 8 rooms were in use by the time I closed.
Some dominatrices have cottages which are fully equipped. Some work out of apartments. Some have houses like I did. Some do outcalls or rent facilities for sessions. When I chose a location it was not based on the location itself, it was based on the availability of a place within my budget and with a landlord who was on side. If I was healthy and had unlimited funds and wanted to go back into business I am not sure where I would reopen and locate. All locations have advantages and disadvantages, as do all choices of a full facility or minimalist approach.
People who have read my book Dominatrix on Trial have written to ask me which “scenes” were my favourites. Every dominatrix enjoys some things about her job more than others. Obviously we like the pure dominatrix stuff more than the administrative aspects of the job, such as cleaning, paperwork and answering phones. In the book I was careful not to say which my favourite scenes were. However, outside the book I will give you these additional comments.
First of all, longer scenes were better. I was always frustrated, as was the client, when the hour went by so quickly. For example, a cross-dresser would take off his clothes, I would help him into restrictive female attire, and there might only be a bit more than enough time of his hour left to get him changed again. Role play can be greatly enhanced when prolonged. Secondly, I would say, honestly, that there were many role-play scenarios I enjoyed above the others, but at that I will stop. Some things are best kept secret. Sorry. It would be like a magician giving away the secrets of doing the magic tricks.
In the last while I have sometimes been asked what it is like not to be running a dungeon any more. More specifically, they wanted to know if I missed the lifestyle with all its activities and the people I encountered. In the first place I have to remind them that I closed my Toronto facility, known as The Bondage Hotel, among other names, in 2002. I have since then practiced my trade in a very limited capacity, rarely for money, among a close inner circle only.
If I was healthy, and was funded to the point that I did not have to make ends meet, I would have no problem with reopening. I do miss doing sessions. However, when your health is as bad as mine, with my failing liver, spinal stenosis and fibromyalgia; you don’t feel a big desire to take on responsibilities. I can’t even be depended on to make a session I have booked. Some days I am bedridden. I make a point of setting an afternoon once a week to go to interviews for my book that are not over the phone, and only go out when I am up to it otherwise. So, as you can see, there are everyday things I miss more than the life I lived as a dominatrix.
So I have restricted myself to two interests. One was finishing my memoirs, Dominatrix on Trial, now published. The other was the current constitutional challenge to the prostitution laws. I try to look forward now that I have confronted my past.
The other day I went to a small supermarket down the street from where I live. A woman who was also shopping there came up to me and said ‘Are you Terri-Jean Bedford?’. Although I was in my sort of disguise I said yes, I am. She told me she had always wanted to meet me and asked me for my autograph, which I gave her, on back of a flyer she found. We had a nice chat and she told me to keep up the fight and stand up for women victims of our laws.
It is always interesting to keep a finger on the pulse of opinion and see what people’s perceptions are. It is amazing how out of the most obscure corners there often comes the most solid support. It is also amazing, watching or listening to call-in shows and the like, how much people know about the current legal battle, and how little some others know.
I have been asked in interviews about my book, Dominatrix on Trial, to compare my struggles, my trials, in my younger years to the legal battles I have fought. I was first busted for having an escort service, with dominatrix services as well, in 1986 and have basically been fighting in courts since that time.
I was born in 1959. For the first 30 years of my life my struggles were for survival. I sometimes had to steal to eat. I had to sell my body in the most dangerous ways possible. I was so down and out and desperate most of the time that the only people I could associate with were those on the margins and things like drug and alcohol abuse, which got them there, rubbed off on me. I was always just responding to the needs of the day and mistakes of the days before. I was almost always in over my head. Sometimes from poor judgment, sometimes from desperation. When I wrote about those days in my memoirs I glossed over some things just to keep my story moving, because I think the reader was getting the idea. I tried to tell about some times when things went well for me, but didn’t last because I was either betrayed, or I screwed up, or changes occurred that were not anybody’s fault.
My later struggles however were of a very different type. My time as a dominatrix and the behavior of the authorities in my cases brought me many allies. I did not struggle alone. Now the struggles are carried on for me, as I must struggle with my chronic health problems. I stand by what I wrote in my memoirs. I have regrets, but not about fighting for what is right and just. That makes me a winner.