By Rafaela Kuznec @Rafaela Kuznec
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Videographer / director: Mike Shum
Producer: Rafaela Kuznec, Ruby Coote
Editor: Florence Kennard
Kat Lyons has been into kitten role-play her entire adult life. The 31-year-old model also works at Cat Girl Manor – a residence in Colorado Springs which hosts animal roleplay in BDSM events.
She met her partner Robrecht Berg, 52, an aerospace engineer who also pursues the arts, at the Comic Con eight months ago.
The couple, from Colorado, are in a loving relationship and despite the judgement they face for being in an age gap and role play relationship, say that the pet play has brought them closer.
Rob, speaking of the time he first met Kat, told Barcroft TV: “She might have been wearing ears at the time but I didn't notice that that much – not until later talking to her on Messenger I found out that she was more into the kitten side of things and did that regularly since she was a teenager.”
Rob, who works as an artist and organises annual Cosplay events, said that he wasn’t shocked about Kat’s role play and has been very supportive of his partner’s lifestyle choice: “This is the same as cosplayers – people do what they like to do.”
However, he admitted that the BDSM role play was something new for him and he has never tried this in his previous relationships.
He said: “It's been a neat new thing to get into.
“I'm very exploratory and I just love trying new things, doing new things, finding new experiences out there and really have pushed into that and enjoyed it with Kat.”
Kat said that expressing her cat identity has brought her closer to her partner and has finally enabled her to become her true self.
Kat told Barcroft TV: “I have always been different.
“I just always had a fascination with cats and I felt myself, I'm a cat.
“I go through life being a cat – it's just who I am.”
Kat claims she realised she was a cat when she was a teenager and has identified as a feline since she was in high school.
She said: “I've always worn cat ears.
“It started when I was in high school, I don't remember exactly what age I was but it [came from] an anime.
“I was like, ‘Oh, that's cool. I want to be that in real life.’
“So I just started applying that to my real life.
“I don't think I started the ears, tail, the collar and all that stuff until later on in life.
“I was bullied a lot for wearing the ears and just being a nerd.
“So I kind of kept it a little bit hidden.”
Kat decided to embrace her kitten identity when she came across the Cat Girl Manor kittens and eventually discovered others who identified as cats.
She remembered: “I just saw other girls doing it, so I felt more comfortable doing it myself.”
Kat opened up to Rob about her life as a cat at the very beginning of their relationship and Rob has not only been very supportive of her lifestyle but found Kat’s adopted feline mannerisms exciting and the couple has been practicing BDSM role play since.
He said: “Everyone has something different that they do.
“I see it as another outlet for a person to enjoy, relax, be themselves and be creative.”
Speaking of their sexual life as a couple, Rob said: “We experiment quite a bit on the sexual side.
“It's one of the things that possible experimentation areas.”
Rob continued: “Pet play was something new to me that Kat introduced me to.
“I was willing to be experimental and try new things.
“The master side of it, not as comfortable with but willing to do that a little bit too.”
In their relationship, Kat mostly takes a submissive role and considers Rob as her “master.”
According to Kat, it brings a lot of pleasure to her.
She said: “I like wearing the collar every day – a collar to represent just him being owned by him.”
Rob said: “We do have the freedom to be fun and not worry about things so much.
“We do unusual things, not the norm things, we like to have fun.”
He added: “I think people should be unashamed and unafraid to explore what they want to explore.”
But Kat admitted that not everyone has been supportive of her kitten play.
She said: “My family and certain people are not accepting that, they don't want to know anything about it.
“It's hard but I'm going to be who I am no matter if people are going to be accepting of this lifestyle or not.
“I'm just going to be who I am.”
Kat, who loves wearing furry ears and an artificial tail, said that for her pet play is not only sexual, but it’s also her lifestyle: “When I first got into pet play, I just felt a sense of home.”
She added: “I've always felt like I was a cat.
“When I'm in my kitten mode I'm happy.
“It's my space.
“Growing up I had to pretend to be normal and not be the cat person but now I get to be myself, I get to express myself, I get to climb, if I want to climb, I can if I want to drink out of a bowl, I can if I want to wear a collar, if I want to wear my ears, I can do it.
“I don't have anybody stopping me saying: ‘Okay, well, you need to be normal’.
“Now I can just be myself.”