In the interest of improving the quality of discourse in BDSM/kink-related threads on the Blue, may we talk about some common misconceptions about BDSM? Perhaps if some MeFite kinksters/allies are willing, we can do some Q&A about BDSM, kink, and "the scene".
posted by Scientist to MetaFilter-Related at 2:22 PM (216 comments total)
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There are a lot of kinksters on MeFi. And sometimes there are threads about BDSM on MeFi. And since these threads about sex and taboo and gender politics and community dynamics and power and trust and all that really interesting stuff, they tend to attract a fair bit of attention from both kinksters and non-kinksters, which is clearly a Good Thing as it makes for interesting discussion and gets people talking about stuff that they (kinky people included) generally can't/don't talk about all that much in their daily lives.
But sometimes these conversations get a little hung up because there are a lot of misconceptions about BDSM out there (many of which are honestly quite understandable) and the folks who happen to be past them and are talking about the main subject of the post have to kind of stop every once in a while and bring someone up to speed who wants to engage with the discussion but who is taking a position that is predicated on some false or incomplete ideas about BDSM. (This is a pattern that crops up in other threads that deal with topics that have parallels to BDSM, as well.) This is usually not the end of the world -- it's great if somebody can learn a little, and generally the thread can take it and continue onward, but it isn't necessarily always dealt with 100% gracefully and occasionally it can set off a complete derail of the thread.
Now, I know that there's really not a great way to ensure that this never happens. However, I think maybe we can mitigate it a little bit (and have a fun time in the process) by getting together here and hashing out some of the common misconceptions about BDSM, doing a little Q&A with anybody who has a question and anybody who's willing to take a stab at answering questions, and generally just trying to improve the level of community understanding on the topic of BDSM and kink. Maybe if we can get more of the community to the point where they're over some of the basic hurdles that make it difficult to talk coherently about BDSM, we can have even better and more interesting conversations about it in the future!
So: I hereby declare this thread to be a free forum for BDSM education. Bring your questions, your pet peeves, your examples (no callouts please) of the types of things that you wish people would know better than to say. Let's have it out in a friendly manner, and walk away more knowledgeable than we came. I'll throw the floor open with a few questions to provoke discussion, just to get the ball rolling:
- What does BDSM stand for, anyway? What does that mean?
- What does a submissive get out of BDSM? Why would somebody let someone else beat them and tie them up and call them names and all that?
- Isn't BDSM dangerous? Surely there's risk involved when you're playing with fire, or needles, or tying somebody up?
Those are just some possible topics to get things going. If you want to take a stab at answering those questions then that'd be cool, and if you'd rather ask questions of your own, or answer questions that you wish
people would ask, that'd be great too. It goes without saying (but I'll say it anyway) that participation in this thread is entirely voluntary and nobody is being singled out as ignorant nor is anybody required to come in and teach Kink 101 unless they feel like it.
Now, let's get this going!