Cold Shower

0005150e-8bd1-786c-6e21-edced89c9284_720So you see that bucket in the photo to the left…it has become where I pee.

When I piss in the bucket, I usually empty after each use. Wednesday Master had an appointment out of the house so I thought I would prove that I pissed in it while he was out so collected it a few times. I forgot to tell him, but he noticed I did that and told me to collect it all day. He had this smile on his face that said that bucket of piss wouldn’t be “wasted.”

Thursday Master and I needed to leave to go out of town early so we were up at 5am. I am not a morning person. So after doing a few chores, I went to ask if him if I could go shower to wake up and get ready to leave. He got the evil smile on his face again.

Soon I was standing in the shower with a bucket of cold piss being emptied on me. I mean cold. Teeth chattering cold. Nothing like a good morning cold golden shower to wake a girl up. He stood there for a few minutes laughing watching me shiver before allowing me to have a hot shower with water and soap!

Consensual issues (part 3): Separating facts from projections

Bob is a bad man.
Bob did very cruel and inhuman things.
Bob is dangerous.
Bob pushes lines and does mean things.

We don’t like Bob.

Bob has been banished from our land.

Except…

Did we really glean anything about Bob?  Do we know what Bob did?  No.  But someone out there made an accusation … and all things we knew about Bob are immediately slanted to whatever the accusation is.  “Bob is bad.”

There’s a climate in local communities at the moment that are approaching abuse and consensual non-consent (CNC) issues with a very zealous blinding attack cycle.  I appreciate and support the awareness lessons that are currently being advocated.  However I’m a bit concerned that some folks are projecting more of their own issues towards this crusade and not keeping a balanced check of their emotions and past.

Being blinded by such projections do not allow us to objectively look at the problem and make sound, rational and sane decisions about Bob.  Yet there are those that instinctively have figured out Bob without gathering any other facts beyond that which was said up above.  “Oh I knew he was a bad person.  I heard … I heard … then I heard ….”

I’m not very intrigued at the what and how Bob did things … I’m more interested in the why things happened the way they did.

I am very much opposed of the overzealous nature by which Bob gets skewered for whatever Bob apparently did.  Communities instinctively have knee-jerk reactions as they seek to ban, flog, and stone Bob to death for whatever atrocities he is believed to have done.  I know you may be reading this going: “yeah, he’s going to blame the victim,” when simply I’m imploring people to reflect on the totality of what happened instead of making erroneous rashes to judgment.

If Bob did bad bad things, then Bob deserves to be punished for those things.

It’s plain and simple.

But if Bob engaged into a situation with Sally – then in the interest of fairness, we need to examine the totality of what happened and why it happened.  That’s not a lobbied support to accept Bob as an innocent as much as it’s important to examine Sally’s role in what happened.  That’s because when folks partake in a consensual environment, in a consensual kink dynamic, there’s a mutual engagement between people. Someone becomes the dominant, someone becomes the submissive.  A scene, play weekend or dynamic then evolves from that.  Hence the reason that there’s a shared responsibility between Bob and Sally that most advocates seem to casually omit when banging their war drums loudly.

By examining what Sally did on her part also enables us to learn how to better teach s-types to avoid the peril Sally faced.  If at the very least, offering a fair warning, educating her more extensively in the negotiation phase or better yet – how to teach her to better listen to her instincts.  We stand to gain a lot of information as to why things happened as they did.

Yes, we can put all the onus and burden on Bob since he’s the d-type.  I can understand that perspective.  But the majority of the situations out there come from an agreement being reached between two like minded people to engage in … something.  If Bob kidnapped Sally.  If he broke into her house.  If he did anything where Sally could not negotiate and be in agreement with, then that’s wrong.  Bob deserves the criticism.  Bob deserves the punishment.  Bob deserves the scrutiny.

If Sally agrees and consents, then that little play on words is how we try to explain to vanillas that makes it okay when Bob spanks, whips, binds, bites and otherwise has his way with her.  Consent is at the heart of our dynamics and interactions no matter how intense or vicious the scene might become.

The integral part of consent is that it’s reached by both parties to engaged in … this or that or the other.  If Sally agreed to engage with Bob to do … things … then we need to take that into consideration.  It’s not an automatic thing, more information is needed.

Onward.

“But Sally had that one scene with him where he beat her with a dog toy and touched her inappropriately.”

Do we know what was negotiated?
Have they played together before?
Do we know what Sally and Bob talked about prior to the scene?
Do we know how much Sally knew about Bob?
Do we know how much Bob knew about Sally?
Did Sally check out Bob’s other play partners to see what kind of play he engages in?
Do we know how much she tried to know what Bob’s style was like?
Do we know if Sally knew that Bob was a dark sadist?  Is he?
Do we know if Bob knew that Sally is quite a masochist?  Is she?
Do we know what kind of masochist Sally is?
Do we know what kind of play Sally enjoys?
Do we know how much Bob conveyed to Sally?
Has Sally ever safe worded to anyone before?
Has Bob ever had anyone safe word during a scene?
Has Sally conveyed what she’s like when she goes into floaty space?
Has Sally conveyed what she’s like what she drops out of floaty space?
Does Bob really understand Sally’s floaty space and does he know what to do when the space happens?
Did they ever discuss their previous experiences so as to get a basis of what happened before?
Do we know if Bob thoroughly outlined what he planned on doing to her?
Do we know if Bob was completely honest and forthright with Sally?
Do we know if Sally was completely honest and forthright with Bob?
Did Bob outlines places he was NOT going to go with Sally?
Do we know if Sally outlined places she did NOT want to go with Bob?
Did Sally ever tell him “do what you want to do” at any point they were together?
Did Sally say anything that Bob could have possibly misconstrued as a green light into the wrong place?
Did Sally convey what triggers she has? Did she say where they come from?
Did Bob know that the play he wanted to do with Sally were going to trip triggers?
Did Bob ask Sally if she wanted to be touched sexually as the scene was going on?
Does Sally remember Bob asking her? Does Bob remember her answer?
Did Sally ever convey to him that sexual touching was a hard limit?
Did Bob ever convey to her that sexual touching was something he was going to do?
If Bob nor Sally didn’t discuss sexual touching – why didn’t they?
During their scene, did Sally safe word?
Did they discuss what safe words were going to be employed?
If Sally safe worded, did Bob know?  What did Bob do?
If he didn’t stop – why didn’t he?
If he knew it was a limit and didn’t stop, why didn’t he?
If she didn’t safe word, why didn’t she?
If she couldn’t safe word because she was frozen and unresponsive, then why didn’t Bob or Sally end the scene before she entered that state?
Did Bob know that Sally has a tendency of freezing up and becoming unresponsive?
What exactly do we know and why aren’t we then brutally honest with what we don’t know?

(The above list of questions are only good if everyone is blatantly honest and forthcoming with the information they’re providing. Folks that deceive their way to the “truth” – are an entirely different matter and it’s pointless attempting to get information out of them.)

I’m not blaming Sally, nor am I blaming Bob either.

“Why aren’t you blaming Bob?”

Because we lack context. We lack information. We lack perspective that can objectively review things.  We don’t know what transpired between Bob and Sally beforehand, during and after.  We don’t know what steps Sally took to protect herself nor do we know how much Bob communicated exactly what he was going to do.

“But Sally fully negotiated out what was to happen.”

I doubt it very seriously she followed the line of questioning up above.

We don’t know how clearly things were conveyed or not. We don’t know if it was a misinterpretation or a deliberate plot to cross any line that Sally puts up.  We don’t know if Bob just took advantage of the situation or if he believed he had the right to do things because of what he interpreted from Sally.  We don’t know a lot of information – and we haven’t even begun to look at the scene yet.

We don’t know if she safe worded.  We don’t know if Sally was triggered nor do we know if Bob knew about the triggers in advance.  We don’t know if she went into subspace or subdrop or what her capacity was like during the scene.  We don’t know what was conveyed during the scene or what transpired after the scene.  We don’t know what the agreed upon expectation for the scene was going to be.  Was she going to get floaty?  Was that the agreed plan and idea?  Did they walk through every step of floaty and aftercare?  We can all go blame Bob for what he’s being accused of, but as you can see much investigation still needs to be done.  Instead of instinctively picking up our pitchforks, torches and shovels we need some patience to understand what happened.

This isn’t to say that Bob did bad things, he very well could’ve and did.  It’s also equally important to look at what Sally did too.

“Aha!  Here he’s finally blaming the victim.”  No.  I’m not.

At the core of our scenes and dynamics, they are generally fostered in two (or more) folks seeking something from one another.  There’s consent, a shared responsibility, a shared level of “hey, things are going to be done to you.”  “Ok, I want things done to me.”   There’s also a shared responsibility to make sure that there’s an understanding of what’s to be expected.  If it’s going to be a no-sex scene, then changing it mid-stream is a PRETTY BIG F***** DEAL.  D-types that brush that off as something minimal truly doesn’t understand what kind of game changer something like that can be.  Conversely, if an s-type teasingly says she wants to be fucked while she’s already spacing out in their own little universe – then d-types might take that to be an invitation or a game changing deal that they are interpreting. Whether or not the s-type wanted the game changing event to happen, D-types should always stay within the agreed upon terms UNLESS the dynamic has evolved in a way that ALLOWS for those terms to change.

Even when there’s shared responsibility, it doesn’t mean d-type is automatically innocent.  If Sally did everything she could to find out about Bob’s history, she negotiated things to the T, she ensured that there was definite boundaries involved – then she’s done her part.  It’s up to Bob to ensure that he lives up to all the things that was agreed to.

If there’s dangling threads and if Sally didn’t go through all of the things she should’ve when playing with Bob – then that doesn’t excuse what Bob did either.  But it doesn’t mean that Sally’s responsibility in her part shouldn’t go unnoticed either. Not unlike any potentially harmful situations, if we don’t educate ourselves and practice some diligence in our processes we run the risk of a lot of things that could go very badly.  That’s why we have to fill out waivers about implied responsibilities when we sky dive, or take a rock climbing course, or even going to the gym.

We ultimately accept the responsibility of what happens to us.

That’s no different here – except we do enter into an agreement, arrangement, or an understanding of what can, will, potentially could happen in a scene or dynamic.

Yes, Bob needs to do what he can to uphold what is expected of him.
Yes, Sally needs to do what she can to uphold what is expected of her.

It’s entirely possible that Sally herself violated the established consent with Bob.

GULPS – WHAT THE FUCK?

If an s-type was physically, mentally and emotionally able to articulate a line or limit and they do not … then the s-type has violated consent in that situation.  It’s not “mental” to hold s-types responsible for being able to be as communicative as they can be.

To clarify: an s-type who can’t articulate a line or limit because they are experiencing mental trauma in the form of a trigger or landmine is not included in that statement.  One cannot expect an s-type to effectively communicate when their emotional and mental state are chaotically attacking everything internally.

However.

Responsible s-types will articulate their triggers and landmines well in advance so that they can be best avoided.  D-types are not mind readers. Some of us can’t read a book much less read someone’s body language.  The best way to avoid a potentially traumatic scene is to communicate everything out in the open so that things can be steered around or avoided.  s-types that don’t seek to inform d-types of the lines, limits and triggers have failed in providing a consensual situation from forming because they have held back critical information from the onset.

“Wait, so can an s-type change their mind in the middle of a scene if they need the D-type to change things up?  Or do they just have to suffer through it because ‘that’s what was agreed upon?'”

Yes.  Situations change all the time – even within the confines of a scene.  Parties should negotiate and more importantly, have the ability to rationally process and negotiate so as to avoid the “in the heat of the moment” mistakes that can happen.  If a s-type promises sex and later says they don’t want to, then the D-type has to respect that change.  Let downs happen bub – sorry.

The important thing is to find the best way to communicate all sides before, during and after the situation.  It’s not just a matter of “red, yellow, green, purple alligator, or brussel sprouts” as your safeword.  It’s about being completely open and honest through every step of the process.  It’s about establishing and maintaining that respect through every part of the situation.  If communication isn’t happening, then there’s going to be a whole lot of problems.

Communication problems are not a D-only issue.  s-types are also very good at miscommunicating or confusing things because it’s not completely clear when things are going on.  All sides need to stop and ensure that everyone knows what’s to be expected and where the comfort level lies.

“Gee, that’s a lot of stuff to do if I just want my ass flogged.”

Yes.  That’s true.  But what’s the alternative?  Having traps and triggers sprung up because all this negotiation work is seriously affecting your hard on or insatiable need to orgasm? If you’re not willing to stave off your loin lust for 30 minutes so that you can talk to Bob about the flogging scene, then I question the sanity of the situation.

What is completely lost in the entire abuse debate is that the d and s form a close mutualistic dynamic – whether it’s just for a scene or longer.  They both seek something from the other.  Hence they ultimately share in the responsibility before, during and after.

Both Bob and Sally could’ve used some outreach, education, communication and respect before they started talking about meeting up at the Motel 6 for a beat and greet.  They both get red marks for not getting to know each other when they should’ve.  They should’ve been more communicative. However, If Bob is a serial perpetrator then there should be consequences for him.  Society, not just our lifestyle, can do away with the likes of the serial abusers … but in your average situation where things can and likely can become miscommunicated, misinterpreted or misunderstood – the “blame” is mitigated and distributed accordingly.  There has to be a willingness to share the responsibility in most cases.

While I openly admit that there are predators out there – the reality is that the real world is full of them.  If there’s the perception that the lifestyle can somehow protect and guard against such horrific conduct …  then I do have some swamp land for you to see that guarantees gold.  Predators are going to find their way wherever they can.  No amount of policing or pitch-forking is going to stop that.  The best what we can do to counter that is to educate, improving our outreach and be there for those that find themselves in such situations.

As community, we need to apply some patience when fact gathering so that we don’t admonish someone out of the gates when there was a misunderstanding.  Sally’s plight is very serious and needs to be heard.  Bob is going to have some explaining to do, but both entered into a situation where outside the line behavior did not happen.  How things got awry becomes a two-person operation unless it can be well established that Bob is a serial abuser and bad person.  Before that conclusion can be reached, we all need to exercise a bit of patience and absorb the factual components of what’s known about the situation before making the leap across the dangerous abyss.

We need to accept the reality that misinterpretations can happen just as much as we have to accept the reality that there will be those that push past lines and limits to achieve whatever they wanted.

—————————————————————-

Consensual Issues (part 1): Rape culture & the lifestyle
Consensual Issues (part 2): The Problem is in the Definition
Consensual Issues (part 3): Separating facts from projections
Consensual Issues (part 4): The Unfortunate Death of Communication
Consensual Issues (part 5): Scolding the Dominant
Consensual Issues (part 6): Personal Responsibility
Consensual Issues (part 7): Community Responsibility


Consensual Issues (part 2): The Problem is in the Definition

It’s amazing how so much of what we do in the lifestyle turns on a single word:

CONSENT

It seems simple.

I consent to a surgical procedure.
I consent to you preparing a meal as I selected from the menu.
I consent to kiss you.
I consent to giving you a hug.
I consent to you leaving my ass to be a bloody mess.

Ah, consent.

It’s an extremely powerful, seven-letter word.  In lifestyle terms, it is the most sacred word we use. It establishes an agreement – an understanding – and gives permission for us to move forward in doing something.  It’s the green light and the antithesis to “Red!,” “Stop!” and “Quit using that &#$@% thing, dammit!”

Consent is at the heart of the things we do to one another.

In the outside world, we keep assuring the vanillas that, because there’s consent, there’s nothing else to worry about.  “I know what I’m doing; it’s okay.”  Even if it seems to them that we’re completely insane for doing something, if we’re consenting to it, it’s okay.  We sometimes compare ourselves to the likes of those that partake in extreme sports (e.g., skydiving, climbing tall buildings or radio towers, motorcycle jumping and other daredevil antics).  “We are doing the same thing. We know what we’re getting into, therefore, my vanilla worriers, it’s okay.  I know what I’m doing.  I’m a trained professional.”  🙂

Definition problems:  I’m not a boxing or ultimate fighter championship fan.  I don’t see how the goal of beating your opponent into submission (or death) is an adequate sport, and this would be why I wouldn’t last very long in a gladiator ring.  The opponents agree to, and consent to, engage each other to the brink of brutality.  No problem, right?  As long as boxer A and boxer B consent, we should get our rumble on and let them duke it out, right?

That’s when some folks start to question the sanity of the decision to consent.  That’s where folks start questioning whether or not we’re capable of deciding – if we’re sane enough to consent.  It goes back to “no self-respecting person would allow themselves to be beaten by another.”  Yet, here we are – here the community is.  That’s also usually when they start commenting how “crazy” that is and quickly pigeon-holing us into the “special needs” folder.

That’s the problem with consent: others are trying to make the determination for us.

Folks tend to invoke their own thoughts and prejudices, without considering that it is not their place to judge, scorn, or shun.  If folks say they consent, then we need to take them at their word that they rationally arrived at that decision, even if we have severe misgivings, suspicions, or hunches to the contrary.  In another words:

It’s not their place.
It’s our decision.
It’s our consent.

Normally, once consent is agreed upon and the scene played out, there are no issues.  Folks consenting to an established parameter of things, who then play within that established sandbox, reach its conclusion amicably.

But the predators and dangerous folks out there use the lifestyle’s consent paradigm against us.  They use consent like toilet paper – before discarding and flushing it away.  They misuse consent, disrespect it, and ultimately damage those around them, who come away wounded, hurt, and otherwise scarred.  That’s the origin for the the discussions happening out there.

Folks who habitually violate consent, whether in the lifestyle or not, have no place in society.  It’s really straight forward.  Either they get help and see why they did what they did or they face the ramifications for not owning up to it.  If someone repeatedly violates the consent derived between two people, it becomes a non-consensual situation.  Period.

Know what you’re consenting to:  If we went into a restaurant and ordered steak, we would be pretty upset if what we got was a veggie omelet.

“But I ordered steak?”

“I know, but veggie omelet was also on the menu and that’s what the cook decided to make you.”

We would leave in a huff and probably wouldn’t be back.

If that happened in a scene, it would be pretty easy to see that what was anticipated to occur, didn’t happen at all.  “All I wanted was a flogging; I didn’t expect to hug, kiss, and cuddle afterwards!”

Here enters the problem with consensual negotiations:  Know what you’re consenting to.

How does the d-type you’re considering having a scene with, handle their menu selection of things to do?  Are they going to expect you to endure a veggie omelet or are they going to give you what was consented to?  If you can’t answer either question, then you’re going into that situation knowingly blind.  You’re risking that things might fall outside the parameters that were negotiated.

Don’t assume:  One thing that drives me crazy at restaurants is when the server automatically assumes that I want lemon in my water.  Even if everyone else around me orders lemon and I say no, there are times the assumption (i.e., mistake) is made that I, too, wanted lemon.

It may seem like a small and trivial bit, but it’s also the exact same reason why some folks believe that it’s perfectly okay for “touchy-feely, huggy groping and kisses on the cheek” are acceptable.  Ask before doing that.  Get the other person’s consent and don’t assume  that just because you got permission to spank, flog, or whatever, that it’s opening the door for other things to happen.  Going back to the restaurant analogy:  just because you ordered the steak doesn’t automatically mean you wanted the appetizer, dessert, and happy hour drinks added to your bill without your authorization or consent.

Ask, don’t assume.

Consensual expiration dates:  Believe it or not, consent can expire.  Just because we had a great time doing that intense scene last month does not automatically mean I have received permission, or consent, today to do anything.  Look above:  don’t assume; ask before doing anything.  We are organic folks that change constantly.  How we react to a hug, spank, or grope may also change.  What conduct was okay before, may not be okay today or tomorrow.

Consensual relationships: If you partake in a relationship which may involve an ongoing dynamic, your consent is going to be radically different.  Yes, you’re going to agree on stuff “happening,” but, how the parties arrange it and forge it from the smelter, ultimately determines the scope of what happens, when, and how.  It’s much more complicated, as we tend to think of consensual relationships as being the sandbox of doing whatever we want.

It’s complicated because it’s not scene-dependent.
It’s ongoing.
It’s evolving.

Your relationship might just be that menu selection or your relationship can be any shade therein.  There’s no right way or wrong way for relationships except whatever works best in your situation and/or dynamic.

To summarize the core principles of consent:

* It always begins between two or more people
* It is negotiated
* It is discussed
* It defines the things we do
* It can be finite
* It can expire
* It should be absolute
* It is not an automatic hug, kiss, grope, fondle or touch card
* It can be revoked
* It must be respected
* It mustn’t be assumed
* It is at the core of how most of us define the thing we do
* Is mutual
* Is not a one-way street
* It can be scary
* It can be freeing
* It can be damaging
* It could be “awesome! Out of this world!”
* It could go down in smoldering flames of defeat

Consent is not abuse when the parties involved maintain their conduct within the parameters that they agreed to.  When either side (yes, either side) violates the conditions they agreed to.  Consent has been violated  (More on this in later chapters.)

Consensual non-consent: The other raging debate is the concept of CNC or  affectionately (sarcasm) referred to as: “the acceptance of abuse or abusive relationships because the d-type has taken the s-type’s right to say “no.”

That just sounds harsh.

Reality:  consensual non-consent starts with consent.  It’s the agreement to come into the restaurant and watch the doors lock behind you.  It’s the agreement that you’re going to accept anything, everything, and nothing that happens to you after the doors slam shut.  It’s the agreement that such an arrangement was sought out and rationally arrived at.  It’s the agreement that you choose to be there.

Consensual non-consent is not for everyone.
Consensual non-consent can be freeing.
Consensual non-consent can be horrifying.
Consensual non-consent can be empowering.
Consensual non-consent is not founded on the principles of abuse.
Consensual non-consent does not dismiss responsibilities from the parties involved.
Consensual non-consent can remove choices from the menu selection.
Consensual non-consent can activate internal triggers and other landmines.
Consensual non-consent should not be looked upon as something one aspires to become.
Consensual non-consent does not come with guarantees, waivers, or warranties.  Consensual non-consent is largely linked to those that believe in the concept of a surrendering dynamic. 
While consensual non-consent can be a horrifying prospect to most anyone, there’s also a foundation of trust and respect that is always there .(At least, that’s how it works for us.)  I’m not about to ink out a blueprint for everyone to follow, because I don’t have any idea how something like that would work in YOUR situation, YOUR scene, or YOUR dynamic. 
Also, there’s nothing that says trust or respect must be a component for a consensual non-consensual dynamic to work – there are some CNC dynamics where it was agreed from the onset of the conditions that were going to happen.  Parties agree and the dynamic was filled out without trust or respect.  It may not be the cup of tea I want, but it doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with CNC with the absent trust and respect … it just means that in those dynamics, it works by not having those components installed.
Consensual Issues (part 1): Rape culture & the Lifestyle
Consensual Issues (part 2): The Problem is in the Definition
Consensual Issues (part 3): Separating Facts from Projections

Consensual Issues (part 4): The Unfortunate Death of Communication

Consensual Issues (part 5): Scolding the Dominant
Consensual Issues (part 6): Personal Responsibility
Consensual Issues (part 7): Community Responsibility

Masochistic Judgments

~written February 13, 2014

I found myself, the other night, at a loss for words. Sir had asked me if that bruise (just inflicted on my breast with an nasty little rubber band) was a good one. I did not know what to say and found myself flustered. How do I tell him that it was a good bruise? He had hurt me. That didn’t make sense at all. I enjoyed it and could admit to that, to a degree. Why not let him know that the bruise was amazing and that I was proud to be wearing it?

Well, because my vanilla brain took over and screamed that this masochist stuff was/is crazy! I mean who actually allows themselves to think about, let alone admit to others, that they want to be bruised, hit, and punished? (Can you hear the voices of religion, the 40’s, and society ringing in here? I can.)

Here is my question, then:  how do I get comfortable with admitting to myself and to others that I desire those lovely, crazy things–that I enjoy pain? It feels unnatural. It feels as if it is truly crazy. I believe I am a masochist (I am, admittedly, still learning). I know that it is a part of me and I enjoy it. Sure, I like to complain about it, but I love it.

I did not know I had this judgment sitting so quietly within me. I thought I had worked my way through this. Accepting myself, exactly where, and as I am, is paramount to my happiness; this I know from years of therapy for depression and anxiety. So accepting myself, just as I would accept someone else’s desire for pain, is what I need to do. How? Is it like being with my first same sex partner? “This is the way I am and that it is just the way it is! I don’t care what you think!” Do I just need to continue to tell myself it is okay until I actually understand that it is? Fake it until I make it?

What is it about admitting my masochistic feelings that doesn’t feel okay in my head? In myself?

Well, it’s because it’s lunacy! Who wants someone to punch them? Who wants to be kicked or feel what it feels like to be kicked? I mean, for god’s sake, the idea gets me wet, but who in their right brain wants that? I know – every masochist on the earth. And who wants to do it? Every sadist on the earth. So why can I not be okay with it? And for god’s sake, why am I still struggling with this? Why am I judging myself?

(Please note that I am only sharing my personal thoughts and questions. This in no way reflects upon others. I am attempting to work out my own path.)
~destiny

Consensual Issues (part 1): Rape Culture & the lifestyle

The recent fervor of discussions, disagreements, and posts about what is happening in our communities has escalated to the point of yelling, pointing fingers, and blame.   At the heart of the current discussions is the notion of rape culture and how it pertains to the lifestyle.  It’s a very emotionally charged discussion that has a lot of merits from all sides involved.  While such discussions would normally be really good points of reference, there’s a lot of emotion out there (and rightfully so).  When emotions get the best of us, the rational part of our brains seem to go bonkers.

Let’s start from the beginning:  We have long since been taught to treat women with respect.  We have very strong ethos that we shouldn’t be violent towards women.  I agree with that.  Yet, in regarding our lifestyle, there is violence–consensual violence–that transpires between like-minded folks.  By and large, we all smile, nod excitingly, and go: “yes, Yes, YES!”

We are all a little warped.

But we like it that way.

So right off the bat, the first questions we need to be asking ourselves are:
1.) Am I comfortable with the concept of consensual violence towards women?
2.) Am I okay with others looking at me scornfully because I partake in a lifestyle that supports the concept of consensual violence towards women?
3.) Am I being honest and real about my approach to this concept or am I trying to live vicariously through my dark fantasies?

The simple reality is that abuse towards women exists.  Harmful, non-consensual abuse happens.  The lifestyle can’t turn a blind eye towards abuse, but it also means that we really have to examine the overall culture and how it applies to each one of us.  To do so, we need to agree on the vernacular and source of terminology we’re going to use.

About those definitions:  The abuse discussions generally center around the concepts of “rape culture” and “victim blaming.”  Therein is a problem.  These terms have roots in the feminist movement that openly describe how our current society has become numb and desensitized to sexually violent occurrences.  The original feminist movement has come out against many of the things we do in the lifestyle.  Those terms (rape culture and victim blaming) speak of and in opposition to sexual violence against women.  They come out against sexual objectification.  They come out against rape of any kind.  They come out against violent masculinity.  They come out against “gray rape,” which walks a fine line when it comes to consent.

And collectively, we normally say: “Okay, so what’s the problem?”

We are the problem.

“I’m sorry, what?”

When we employ the terms, rape culture and victim blaming, at their most basic root definitions, they make clear and concise references that land squarely on the lifestyle. Then the folks that coined the terms originally are looking at us (in the lifestyle) as part of the problem.  In their eyes, the lifestyle partly enables the current rape culture issue.  We enable the problem because we accept the belief that “it’s okay to do some of this stuff,”  (i.e., violence, spankings, whippings, forced-hair-pulling, and other such sexual yumminess) as long as we’re consenting.

Please note that nowhere in the inordinate amount of articles on rape culture does it condone anything regarding consensual BDSM or the lifestyle.

But, but, but …  I know.  I know.  We pride ourselves on being on the consensual side of this process and, yet, how can we have the conversation using the terms that (by definition) make us guilty by association?

Okay.  Let’s address a few things first:

* Rape exists.  It’s apparent.  It’s obvious.  No amount of discussion can dismiss the fact that unwanted sexual, over-the-negotiated-line conduct happens.  It does happen.  It is unfortunate that it happens.

* We all bear some responsibility, whether we sit at home and do nothing, or we don’t come out and speak against non-consent.  We are enabling the problem, even if we aren’t a perpetrator doing so.

* Rape and ignoring limits will continue.  Yes, this, too, is a somber fact.  We are not going to stop rape and hard-limit bashing, but we can improve things by reaching out to newcomers, educating everyone, and continuing the discussion with everyone involved.  The more educated we all can become, the better we can prepare the next person, especially those new to the lifestyle.

* We, as a community, usually have a very overzealous knee-jerk reaction when we start policing ourselves.  Context matters.  Shared responsibilities matter.  Allegations are to be treated very serious and they need to be treated fairly.  If we are going to make accusations about each other, then we (both those involved and those hearing the claims) absolutely need to make certain that we’re approaching the charges objectively.

Please also keep in mind, that if we’re going to start going through Cosmopolitan’s or BuzzFeed’s open list of defining rape culture, we will be looking into the mirror on a lot of it.

Definition problems:  Do a Google search for Buzzfeed’s “what is rape culture?” to understand the problem we’re facing.

*Anyone can be a rapist.  Yes, everyone can be a rapist.
*The Idea of Gray Rape.  This is where we live in the lifestyle: consent.  If you’re in the lifestyle – apologies, but you’re playing in the gray area.  It’s time to accept that fact.
*No means yes.  Remember, we live in the gray area, right?  Also keep in mind, I have yet to raise anything related to consensual non-consent, yet.
*Victim blaming.  Society believes that you can’t be a victim if you consent to a lifestyle that promotes sexual violence.  (A’hem, bullshit!)
*Slut shaming (and sexual objectification):  This is society looking straight at us and what we do.  Fetishes and the like are right in the thick of it, as well.
*Street harassment. This, in our circles, is similar to going to a munch and be preyed upon because you’re new and don’t know any different.  The unfortunate perception is that if you’re in the lifestyle, then you must be a slut or some sort of sexual deviant…because that’s just how we are.

Accept the reality:  We all play in the gray area.  If we’re going to want our bottoms smacked; if we want our hair pulled when we’re having rough sex; if we want to be little bondage puppets because of what it does to us; then we’re dancing and high-five’g our way into the gray area.  We are enabling the rape culture problem in the way society defines it – as Cosmopolitan defines it – as feminist groups define it.  We may try to re-tool the definition and how it applies to us internally (within the lifestyle), but if we’re going to have an open, honest discussion on rape culture in society, then we all need to confess that we are all part of the problem.

Great, now what am I going to do with all my toys!?!  Well, we can all quietly leave – one at a time, or we can accept the notion that we’re part of the problem and move forward.  If we are going to be moving forward, then maybe we can start addressing a few things internally (within the lifestyle):

* Stop using the term “rape culture,” or, at the very least, call it something else so that we stop sounding like hypocrites.
* Start re-defining terms like David Stein did for S.S.C. and those that followed coining R.A.C.K. and P.R.I.C.K.  We need to stop using vanilla-related terminology that openly contradicts our lifestyle.
* Continue the advocacy for personal responsibility and how to teach proper personal responsibility to s-types…and ESPECIALLY for d-types.  One thing I have read before is that “we teach our daughters how to be safe, but we don’t teach our sons how not to rape.”  It’s true.  We don’t do enough.
* Community leaders need to improve their outreach and education programs.
* Continue listening to those victims who have gone through abuse, non-consent, and rape and take their allegations seriously.
* Continue to learn from these victims on how perpetrators are doing it, so that we can better use that information when we conduct outreach to the next newbie who comes into the lifestyle.
* The community needs to continue to freely meet, to discuss, and to be open to change as perpetrators change their habits.
* Accept the notion that if we’re going to police ourselves, it really begins with ourselves – stop pointing fingers at everybody else.  If you’re going to bitch, moan, or complain, then you’re not furthering the discussion.
* Understand the totality of the problem, instead of just honing in on the parts that seem relevant for you, personally.

At the heart of what we do lies consent.  Without it, we are abusers.  Without it, we are everything those articles in Cosmo and Buzzfeed talk about.  When we partake in the lifestyle – doing the things we love to do – and it goes well, we don’t see ourselves as abusers, we don’t see ourselves as victims.  That’s why we have to redefine the language we use, so that we can address the problem as it exists in our own realm.  The various movements outside of the lifestyle won’t understand why we do what we do, and that’s okay, because we can all think and believe as we choose to.  That doesn’t mean we sit idly by and hope that the problem goes away.  It certainly makes the arguments quickly deflate when we can’t even agree on exactly what it is we’re fighting against.

We won’t change their minds, but we can be solid in ours.  Having clear consent standards is the first vital step forward. There are problems in engineering, though, because consent is such a huge component. I’ve even had to re-think how to blog about it.  To touch on all that I want to, I’m breaking this idea into the following parts/blogs:

Consensual Issues (part 1): Rape culture & the Lifestyle
Consensual Issues (part 2): The Problem is in the Definition
Consensual Issues (part 3): Separating Facts from Projections

Consensual Issues (part 4): The Unfortunate Death of Communication

Consensual Issues (part 5): Scolding the Dominant
Consensual Issues (part 6): Personal Responsibility
Consensual Issues (part 7): Community Responsibility


Slut Taking a Walk in the Woods

This happened when I was in Cleveland, Ohio…I think it was Spring 2000.sgdirtygirldw

There was this gentleman that I was friends who was dominant. Over the past year, we would met for coffee, lunch, hang out and such, but we never played. Anyway we had talked about having some kinky fun, but never could get the timing right. So finally it happened…he told to dress a certain way.  I dressed according to his wishes…I put on a short short black skirt, black thigh highs that had a wide black band on top instead of lace, sexy heels, a chiffon poets blouse that was floral print. The blouse was sheer with a deep plunging neckline and a keyhole peek-a-boo closure on top. No bra or panties were allowed.

It was beginning of March so still cold, but not really any snow on the ground at that time. It was not dry out, as it had been rainy and cloudy that day. I got in his car and he immediately starts in on me with his words and touches. He pulled my tits out of my blouse and started squeezing and slapping. He had me spread my legs wide apart and slapped and inner thighs. He called me names and I knew I was getting wet right away.

We drove to a wooded park with trails. We sat in his car while he bound my tits with bungee cords and then added nipple clamps with a lead chain on them. He pulled the lead out through one of the little keyhole in my blouse. You could see my tits point straight out like I was wearing a bullet bra. You could see them bound if you looked close enough at the blouse.

He told me to stay, as he got out of the car. He walked down the parking lot and disappeared on a trail as I sat in the car for a bit. It was mid-day and kind of cold so there were not many people out there. He came back and pulled me out by my hair roughly. He pulled me close and slapped my tits as he whispered into my ear that I looked like such whore. He picked up the lead chain and yanked. I let out a moan of pain. My breasts had already become very sensitive and engorged from being bound and clamped.

He pulled my coat off. He pulled my skirt up so it was barely covering my bum. But showing off the tops of my thigh highs. He pushed my thighs open and slapped my thighs hard over and over. He rubbed lightly over my cunt to tease me…it throbbed right away. I moaned. He laughed at me  – saying “slut” in a low and wicked voice that gave me shivers. He wrapped and tied my wrists up with a scarf and draped my coat over my tied wrists.

He took the lead chain coming from the clamps and started to walk. We were walking fast and it was hard at times to keep up with him. We started off on a trail and then he pulled me off the trail. I had to walk over tree limbs and past bushes. He would stop and push me against a tree roughly slapping my tits that throbbed with pain from being bound so tight. He would hurt me and then start walking again – pulling me to follow. I would feel the twigs grabbing at my ankles and calves. Then suddenly he would stop and push me into a tree again and pull my skirt all the way up spanking me. And just as suddenly as we stopped we started walking again him pulling me along again. He would tell me to speed up. He would laugh at me as I struggled in my heels walking (more like tripping) through wet leaves and dirt. I got caught on fallen branches and would stumble and again he would laugh at me just speed up making me practically run. Which of course with my bound tits made them bounce and jiggle causing me to wince and moan in pain. He then would stop and push me against a tree and slap my tits again. He hit them so hard I let out a little scream so he slapped me across the face telling me to be quiet. Seeing the sadism in his eye, I know I needed to be quiet.

He then pulled me along again…fast making me fall on my knees. He came behind me and spanked my ass and kicked at me. He laughed at my clumsiness. He told me to stay on my knees. He took my coat, undid my hands from the scarf making me crawl – following him on my hands and knees. I crawled in the wet leaves and dirt. I felt the twigs ripe into my thigh highs snagging them and scratching against my skin. It then started to sprinkle rain again soon. He laughed at me again saying how desperate I must be to crawl after him. That I must be a wanton slut that would hump a tree to get off.

He pushed my face down…near the dirt…he didn’t push it in the dirt, but got my face really close. He told me that I belonged in the dirt. He made me say it. He then said, “you are a piggy in the mud.” He went over and over how dirty I was, how disgusting I looked with rips in my thigh highs, twigs in my hair, mud on my legs and so on. Each detail he described turned me on more. He told me he could smell how turned I was, that I liked being a piggy in the mud and I such a slut in the mud to allow him to treat me this way.  He finally pulled me up by my long hair roughly. Then he pushed me against a tree and pulled my tits out of my blouse…squeezing them telling me that I was a pig, a slut, a whore, a cunt and so on. He slapped them hard over and over and then removed the bondage and clamps. They hurt so much when he took each part off – I didn’t scream, but damn I wanted too let it out.

Soon we were walking again and he pulled my skirt down and guided me by my neck with my hair covering his hands. He then leaned into me and said someone is following us. He had me turn and sure enough back there through the trees I saw someone. He said keep walking. We turned to get back on the trail. We walked a bit and soon the man was not there. B thought he got bored when we started behaving so left us alone. We then walked a ways and went off the trail again. He stopped and pushed me against a tree so I was hugging the tree and my bottom was pushed out for him to spank. Then we walked a little bit again – stopping again, so he could play with my tits. And we would repeat this…each time we stopped he focused on a new area to play such as my cunt. He slapped, rubbed and grabbed my cunt hard. Being rough with it. And I squirmed and moaned. This repeated a few times…walk, stop & spank, walk, stop & play with my tits, walk, stop & play with my cunt. Finally he stopped and had me start stroking his cock…which shortly was followed by me being pushed to my knees in the dirt and giving him a blowjob. After he came, he told me to get straightened up and we walked back to his car. We sat there and talked for a bit before he took me home.

I remember being so wet and turned on. It even turned me on thinking someone had been watching me. Of course later I worried that the person thought I was being “abused” or “forced” but it still turned me on to think of someone watching me be used that way.

It was exciting being outside. Being all dressed slutty in an area that would normally require better walking attire. Being in heels walking around in the dirt just made me feel more slutty for some reason. Soft sexy see through poets blouse against the rough bark of the tree. Crawling around in the dirt in my thigh highs and short skirt. It was….a rush of emotions….exciting and very much a turn on.