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Rebellious Sisterhood: Karen Evers-Foo, Intuitive Life Coach and BDSM Lifestyle Mistress

Updated: Jun 26, 2021

Karen Evers-Foo is an Intuitive Life Coach. She works with individuals who seek to regain control over their lives, empowering them to lead more fulfilling lives. Her well-rounded, holistic approach includes both conventional and spiritual therapies that result in deep and powerful transformations of the person’s body, mind and soul. She holds a BA in Psychology from Syracuse University, New York. With over 20 years’ experience in the corporate world, working with leadership on employee relations and recruitment, she received certifications in counselling and personal assessment & development tools. She is also well versed in various energy and emotional healing modalities. She is also a Lifestyle Mistress who coaches and conducts workshops for the alternative lifestyle community within Asia. She currently resides in Bangkok, Thailand. She discusses the personal aspects of her life leading up to BDSM, as well as the importance of community, finding love and giving back. Here is her story.


Trigger warnings: abuse and rapeplay


On Discovering Sexuality


I’ve always been a typical tomboy. I have always got on better with boys than with girls. I went to an all-girls primary school, but a mixed secondary school. I was in the first cohort that had boys in my school. My body blossomed when I was quite young. I had a lot of male friends and this resulted in shame, jealousy and envy from a lot of the girls I knew.


I was 13 years old when this started to happen and it was very difficult for me. It led me to spend even more time with the boys. Most of them treated me as one of the boys and I often heard about their thoughts, feelings and frustrations regarding girls. I understood the way they thought. I suppose it consolidated the fact that I was more masculine than I was feminine in terms of personality.


It was during this time that I started to date my first official boyfriend. He was a typical “Mr Macho” man, very masculine. He was a water polo player and he was a big, beefy kind of guy. When a side needed to be taken it was easy for me to convince him and bring him over to my side of the fence, so to speak. He was my first love, my first lover. And in fact, he was more scared of our first time than I was. I sort of manipulated it to be how I wanted it to be. That was the first inkling that I had in terms of my orientation. Thereafter, the boys I dated were very similar.


In my day-to-day life I am fairly assertive. When I was growing up, women were not necessarily assertive and they didn’t really speak their minds. It was clear that it was because of my confidence level that I was easily able to dominate or manipulate the men that I dated. This assertiveness continued to develop as I grew up.


I was always the one who was more adventurous and far more daring in the bedroom. I did a lot of things at the time that I just considered wild and very adventurous. I didn’t know there was a label for it. Oftentimes, I was labelled as a wild child.


When I went to university in the US, that’s where I really discovered myself. Men in the United States were a lot more adventurous in the bedroom and willing to experiment.



During college, I dated American men who were open to trying new things. I was emboldened by the fact that the men I dated were so willing to experiment and explore. By that point, the word BSDM was still not in my vocabulary, it wasn't even something I had heard of.


During a summer internship back home in Singapore, at the US embassy, I met my first husband. He was South American and had a macho-masculine energy. In the early 90’s, we got engaged and moved to Bangkok with the company we worked for. However, I had to go back to Singapore because of some issues with the company.


Whilst in Singapore, his mother rang me and said that I needed to get him out of Bangkok, that it was my responsibility. I was racking my brain to think about how to get him out and back to Singapore.


Although at the back of my mind, I knew that we weren’t completely right for each other, I gave him an ultimatum and said: “Either you come back and we can get married, or we’re splitting and that's it.” He said: “In that case, fine. I’ll come back.” In hindsight, it was a stupid thing to say.


I shut down my sexuality and became a working machine to make sure we had enough money to keep a roof over our heads.

So he came back and I fulfilled my promise. It is something I always do; if I agree to do something, then I will follow through with it. At the time, I was trying to be a good daughter, a good Chinese girl.


There are very clear definitions in my culture as to what constitutes a good wife. You can have a strong personality, but are still expected to be subservient to your husband's demands and requirements. If my mother-in-law says I have to do something, then I do it. It is my responsibility to look after him. If he eats badly, or if he is sick, it is my fault. His mother doesn't yell at him - she yells at me. This created a lot of pressure for me to conform.


On Marriage & Abuse


Despite the fact that my mother was modern and a career woman, she was very typical of her generation. She created a lot of pressure on me to conform to what society expected of me.


My father was a very abusive man. Even though I idolised my mother, I grew up hearing the various excuses for why my father would beat her. Because I saw the abuse regularly, I downplayed it in my mind. So when I started to experience both mental and physical abuse in my marriage, it didn’t surprise me.


Due to societal and family pressure, I became a completely different person. Even though I was very assertive in my work, back home it was a completely different story. There was a lot of abuse in my marriage and it was extremely difficult and challenging.It became even more challenging when I had 2 children with him.



The abuse got progressively worse over the years and I begged for my mother’s approval to get a divorce. She had seen first-hand how abusive this man was towards me. Yet she would often speak to me in hushed tones in front of him, saying in Chinese “Don’t argue with him, just give in and say yes.” This was a huge internal conflict for me. I had to sit there and tolerate it, distancing myself from who I really was. It was driving me crazy. He barely worked, often going drinking with people whom he thought were friends. I was working 3 jobs to pay for all the bills. With my son’s high medical bills, credit card debt, mortgage, grocery & household bills, he still incurred more debt with his wild partying ways.


I was with him for 14 years. During the latter years, I decided to seek support from my church. The head pastor at the church publicly condemned divorce, explaining that you should do anything to fix the marriage and hand it over to God.


I got lucky when I went to speak to another pastor. Publicly he condemned divorce, but privately he explained that if the alternative is abuse and beatings, then you needed to leave. For a pastor to say that was a very big thing for me. Enough was enough.


The whole person that I was, was completely crushed. My sense of self was severely damaged. I kept begging for my mother’s approval to allow me to divorce and eventually, after witnessing how I crumbled after a particularly cruel attack, she finally agreed.


Rebuilding my sense of self, rebuilding my femininity, was a very painful and difficult journey.

The divorce was a long and drawn-out process and my husband was emotionally abusive, using my children to threaten me. He was extremely insecure and the only way he knew how to be was to bully everybody into doing what he wanted.

One day, he threatened me with demanding full custody of my children from the judge. Something just flipped inside my head and I figured that it may end up being the same arrangement that I grew up with; my father had custody of the children and my mother would see us on the weekends. I thought that since I grew up in that environment, then I can put up with this arrangement. So then I told him that I will accept that arrangement. He was shocked. He didn’t really want full custody, he said it so that I would give up on the divorce and continue living off me financially.


Something inside of me changed that day. I decided that I was going to pick myself up. By that time my self-esteem had crashed to the ground, so it was very hard for me to rebuild my sense of self. My relationship with him was so bad that I didn’t even want to be near him, let alone to even accidentally be touched by him. I shut down my sexuality and became a working machine to make sure we had enough money to keep a roof over our heads.


Rebuilding my sense of self, rebuilding my femininity, was a very painful and difficult journey. However, determined to begin straight away, I started dating while the divorce papers were being finalised, even though my husband was sleeping in the study. I wanted to put myself back together again.


One of the things that therapists suggest to people to help rebuild their femininity and to claim their power is do something nice for yourself or buy yourself something nice. I decided to buy myself some lingerie. When my husband saw the lingerie for the first time, hanging on the washing line, he went into a massive rage and came very close to hitting me.


I was defiant. I said to him: “Go ahead and hit me! There are plenty of neighbors who can see everything that's going on. If you hit me right now, I'm going to go to the police to file a report. I dare you!”


It was then that he backed off. I felt emboldened by this. I decided that I was going to continue to buy pretty things for myself to make myself feel good. I didn't buy the lingerie for a man, I did it for myself. I didn't give a shit about him anymore.


On Finding BDSM


When the divorce papers came through, I started what I like to call “revenge dating.” I realized how much I was starving from lack of touch. I began to enjoy my body again and I had quite a few playmates. Although despite jumping right in, it was a particularly challenging time for me.


From an Asian perspective, I had a ton of baggage. I was 36 years old, divorced, had two children, my skin had gotten really bad and I had gained a lot of weight. There were a lot of stereotypes that I had to work against.


Even though I had this baggage, I decided I was not going to deny who I am anymore. I decided to be very direct about who I am and what I like - explaining to men that these are the sort of things that I prefer.


After leaving my husband, I started to discover BDSM. The Internet was much more robust at this time; the more I read about it, the more intrigued I became.




I started to discover that a lot of things that are defined as female domination within BDSM and it was pretty much what I was already doing and what I was comfortable with and enjoyed. I finally had a name for it. I wasn't just a wild child. I researched, educated myself and explored as I tried to figure out where I fit in the framework of BDSM.


I started dating a man who understood the lifestyle. It was he who introduced me to a Munch, a social gathering for people who are similar in how they think in terms of sexual orientations. I started attending Munches regularly so that I could slowly ease myself into the lifestyle. It was mostly men who attended.


As I read and researched about the lifestyle, I started dating and using online websites to meet people. I discovered that female dominants were quite rare, but a lot of men had an issue with the fact that I was plus size. I decided to be upfront with who I am online. I would vet the men online first and make sure they were comfortable and can be attracted to plus size women.


In Asia, being slender is idealised. This pressure comes from all areas of society; from parental pressure to friends. People are often encouraged to be slender or else, “they will never be married.”


A lot of parents think it’s OK to fat-shame their daughter for their own good. They do it because they’re afraid that their daughter will not be able to marry, which is based on the premise that as a woman you are expected to marry. Only then are you worth something.

I started to discover that a lot of things that are defined as female domination within BDSM and it was pretty much what I was already doing and what I was comfortable with and enjoyed.

I realised that I was more attracted to men in positions of power; they understood what it meant to have power and control. Some people thought that I was a gold-digger but it wasn’t the money I was attracted to. I was attracted to the fact that they would consciously decide to give up their power. It made it even more intoxicating for me. It got my juices running mentally, emotionally and physically. And just like when I was younger, I had a knack for getting the men twisted around my finger, just by talking to them online.


I have been to parties and played with men and women, but my preference is men. I am a little bit flexible. Although I am a female dominant, I am also a switch; probably 90% of the time dominant and 10% submissive. But the submissive side depends on a particular type of play and partner.



On Finding Love


I met my second husband through BDSM. We started out as playmates. At the beginning, he told me all of the things that he wouldn't do, one of which was that he would never say, “I love you.” So when he did say it, I was extremely shocked.


He was already my submissive, but we decided to take things a little further. He became my 24/7 slave. We had a collaring ceremony [a collaring ceremony binds a dominant and submissive together in a symbolic way to honour their commitment. It's often compared to a wedding, but instead of a ring placed on the bride and groom's finger, it's a symbolic collar though sometimes an actual collar placed around the submissive's neck].


The ceremony was very formal and old school, officiated by my previous BDSM mentor. For me, this ceremony was more important than my wedding. We got married a year and a half after we were collared.


On Helping Others


I met a mentor who tried to introduce me to being a submissive. We decided to attempt a rape roleplay, which was on the extreme end of things. I felt that I needed something extreme to be able to engage my submissive side. The session was a disaster, in a funny way. During the aftercare, we both couldn't stop laughing and I realised it just wasn't for me.


But my mentor became a close friend. He even arranged for his client meetings in the region to coincide with my wedding so he could attend and be one of my best men. I helped him repair his relationship with his wife, and I supported him in opening up to his wife and letting her know about his lifestyle. Based on that experience, I grew the confidence to help others in the community in similar situations.


In some BDSM sessions there isn’t always sex involved, so from a “technical” point of view, there isn't any physical cheating. But nonetheless, can be viewed as emotional cheating and BDSM is still viewed as perverse and deviant; therefore many people hide it from their spouse or partner.



As the community grew, I grew a reputation for helping others in the community. For newbies attending their first munch, after the initial self – introduction to the host of the munch, I would be the 1st point of contact for them. I would have a welcome chat and ease them into the gathering. Oftentimes, I get approached by those who have partners to speak to their significant others about the lifestyle. My training as a psychotherapist helped me guide people in the community.


In Asia, the community is still very much underground and secretive. From my experience, this is not the same in other countries. Apart from the myth that BDSM is abuse, there is an additional challenge for those who identify as males submissives and female dominants. It goes very much against the Asian norm for men to be the dominant and females to be submissive. Even outside of BDSM, there are many derogatory terms for men and women who behave in those manner. So there is added pressure to hide and be secretive if they identify with these roles.


Some of my clients have never spoken to their partners about sex and what they like or dislike. Or even what they like outside of the bedroom, in terms of compliments or affection. One of the most fundamental core values in BDSM is consent. It is at the foundation of BDSM. In my experience as a therapist and coach, I see a lot of challenges that my clients face when it comes to honest, respectful communication within Asian cultures during these current times.If you want to engage in BDSM, certain conversations need to be had. Trust is fundamental and at the heart of BDSM.


On Bangkok


I am still new to Thailand, but I plan on getting involved with the community here. Because of Covid-19, I haven't been able to get actively involved, but I am still active on the FetLife BDSM website, forming connections with members of the BDSM community in Thailand. I am still conducting presentations, workshops and private counselling sessions online.


For regular events and activities in Thailand, I am aware of a professional Domme in Phuket who owns a private dungeon. She hosts parties and always heavily vets the people who attend the parties to ensure the safety of everyone involved. For up to date listing of events in Thailand, Fetlife is the place to get updates.


If you would like to get involved with the BDSM community, my advice is to attend a chapter of a local Munch. There are three Munches in Thailand that I know of: one in Bangkok, one in Phuket and one in Chiang Mai. You can connect with the community on the FetLife website - the group in Bangkok is called Thailand Kinks.


If you would like to get into contact with Karen, please send in a request to the magazine and we will release her email address.


By Becky O'Brien

Becky O'Brien heads The F Word's Rebellious X column. She is a member of the Bangkok Rising Managing Committee, an event organiser, passionate about gender equality and an aspiring storyteller; dedicated to finding untold stories and bringing them to light.


Illustration by Andrea Arias

Andrea is a Colombian illustrator based in Bangkok. Her work explores the female experience and our connection to nature. You can see more of her work on Instagram at

@andriearias

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