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December 30, 2014 / gameofslaves

BDSM and the mainstream


BDSM (and ‘kink’ in general) are not commonly seen in mainstream gaming, and I think it has to do with a lack of understanding.  …and not a little to do with public misconception.

I should be wary of making references to a book / story I haven’t read, but I think I can do so with some amount of safety.  Let me start by saying, “I have not read ‘Fifty Shades’, nor do I intend to.”  A trusted person did so and compared it to “Twilight” (which I have also not read, nor do I intend to).

“Fifty Shades [of Gray] is to BDSM as Twilight is to Romeo & Juliette.  A pale comparison to say the least.  An easy read.  Fap material for those who like simple, fast-food literature and want to feel like they’ve read a book.”

I’m not saying the books are bad.  I’m saying they do not fall into the realm of my preferred styles of reading… or content.  (I’m a book snob. I admit it. Get over it.)

I know a cute little film called “Secretary” ( IMDB: link ) which I think does an excellent job showing two people as they try to accept and understand their desire (need?) for power-exchange in their lives.  It also shows people ‘outside’ who don’t understand, though they try.

I’ve seen a lot of commentary about the relationship between Lee and Mr. Grey (the one from ‘Secretary’, not Gray) from people who don’t get it.  Some say she’s ‘broken’ and needs to become empowered.  Some say she’s in a ‘cycle of abuse’ and needs to be free of it.  Others attack Mr. Grey for ‘assaulting’ her during a ‘time of weakness and transition’.  These are people who may engage in sensation play (light bondage, feathers, light spanking) for a lark in the dark, but can’t understand the rush and intimacy which comes from the intensity and trust of power-exchange.

Letting go of yourself and putting your life in another’s hands is difficult for many.  I don’t hold it against them.

There’s a trust exercise which many groups perform where you close your eyes, cross your arms over your chest, and fall backward as you trust your teammates to catch you in your vulnerability.  I did this once, and the group let me fall to the floor because they thought it would be funny.  In exchange, I did not provide my notes or answers for the next test.  Both groups (they and I) proved we could not trust each other.  I spent the rest of the semester ignoring them while they thought they were ignoring me.  [I did my final exam/project solo and got an A- (91%), while as a team they got a C- (~72%).  One of my former teammates apologized for how they had been ignoring me… and I showed her my score, “who’s been ignoring whom?”  Sorry… I went a bit too far with that.  (Yes, I have issues.)]

Trust is not easy.  It takes time to build and must be reinforced.  People who engage in anything beyond light BDSM understand trust and how important it is.

Many people cannot bring themselves to trust deeply enough to bare their vulnerabilities; they cannot understand why someone would want to.

I understand.  And I do my part to share this view with ‘vanilla’ people.  I explain how freeing it can be to put yourself in another’s control, and how empowering it is to have someone trust you so deeply.  It is intimacy at its purest.  It doesn’t have to be sexual… and only once in the preceding 575 words have I mentioned it. (…and only barely!)

Does kink add spice to sex?  Or the other way around?  I sense a poll in the offing…

– Cam

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