Category Archives: #RelationshipReboot

Deprogramming societal messages about relationships. Creating self-actualized relationships

Hiding in plain sight

When a friend showed me this article today, it was creepy how similar it was to my own experience starting out in the BDSM community.  I’ll excerpt a bit of it here for with my own commentary.

“I Never Called It Rape: Addressing Abuse in BDSM Communities” – by Kitty Stryker

When I start to think of the number of times I have been cajoled, pressured, or forced into sex that I did not want when I came into “the BDSM community”, I can’t actually count them. And I never came out about it before, not publicly, for a variety of reasons- I blamed myself for not negotiating enough, or clearly, or for not sticking to my guns, or I  didn’t want to be seen as being a drama queen or kicking up a fuss. Plus, the fact is, these things didn’t traumatize me, and I didn’t call it sexual assault or rape, because I felt ok afterwards. There was no trauma, no processing that I needed.
This was my experience too.  How horrible is it to be a new in this environment and have to just accept blame for actions that were never truly consensual and in any other context would have qualified as sexual assault?  But just like the vanilla world…we end up carrying that guilt and that burden because safewords weren’t honored, because scenes went too far, because my safety was not of the utmost concern to the dominant in the situation.  Somehow it’s my fault.  I wasn’t more clear when negotiating (stupid me, I thought “no paddles” meant no paddles would be used).  It’s my fault if I expose someone who treated me poorly because everyone else thinks he or she is an “expert” or Master of the craft. 
I had physical wounds.  But more importantly I had emotional and spiritual wounds caused by this type of disregard.  Submission by its very nature exposes a person’s vulnerability.  And the bad and dirty players exploited that vulnerability, betrayed my trust and worse blamed me for the results because I wasn’t “submissive enough”. 
This was traumatizing.  Make no mistake about it.  It would ruin my experience with the next dominant or top I met and make me leery of trusting myself much less ever trusting others.    As for the physical wounds, I had them.  But how do I identify the wounds I consented to and those I didn’t?  Unless it was a clear matter of “I didn’t consent to marks of any kind” how do you distinguish between a literal and unintentional “oops” and the more reckless “don’t give a fuck”? Read the rest of this entry

A poly disclaimer

For the past few days I’ve been reading posts about polyamory.  For full disclosure, I do describe myself as polyamorous  (poly).  And I suppose I identify sooo much that people have accused me of being a poly advocate.  I would actually describe myself more as an advocate for healthy relationships.  No matter what form they take. I don’t necessarily advocate poly for everyone, but instead I use it as an example of a relationship structure that not only works for me but works fucking well for me.

And here is a quick summary of my relationships:  I am legally married to one man, let’s call him Husband and we have two marvelous children.  I am spiritually married to another man for the past 3 years, let’s call him Warrior, who is legally married to another woman (and she has another partner as well).  I date both women and men and those that identify in between.  So does Warrior.  Husband is only now starting to consider getting involved in other relationships.  Husband and I have been poly for 7 years this July, which is more years we’ve been poly than not (we’ve been together for 12 years).  So, yeah, poly is working quite well for me.

Over the past few weeks, I found myself getting hyper defensive of what I’ve been hearing about poly lately.  Maybe this is how the rest of the world feels when their relationship dynamic is under attack.  Except, you know…they’re the majority and still have power, control, rights and shit.  Most of the people making complaints about poly have been either those who are new to it or had a terrible experience with it.  Anyway, I thought this might be a good place to start a blog about relationships, sexuality, culture and where they all intersect in my life.

This is by no means a coherent or even competent defense of poly.  It’s just a reaction.  A knee-jerk reaction that wasn’t at all appropriate for the person who originally inspired this…but was something I needed to say after redefining over the past year the way in which I practice poly.  Again, I don’t advocate poly for everyone…but I do advocate conscious relationship building. Read the rest of this entry

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