I’ll answer the question right off the bat: NOTHING.
The “community”, if you believe in such a thing, does not owe you a single thing. I’ll explain why.
I read a thread in which someone decided that everyone has to know everything about BDSM, and is personally responsible for educating all the new people in all the BDSM things.
“Even in the realm of BDSM, I still come across folks who have been in the lifestyle for decades, so they say – and I have no reason not to believe them, who have no idea what a little is.”
Said as if it is a horrible thing for someone not to know about a niche, trendy fad kink.
Finding that statement to be very judgmental, I asked “Why would they?” Behaving like a child doesn’t fall under bondage or discipline. It isn’t dominance or submission. It’s not sadism or masochism. If they’ve never seen it in their circles, they’ve never seen it.
That’s not a crime.
A lot of experienced people don’t know about the fetish of balloons and know nothing about dudes putting nettles through piercings in their foreskin. Or putting crickets on their junk so they’ll bite. Still more have never heard of splitting a dick in two, or splitting the tongue like a snake.
If they don’t know about it, they’re not going to be teaching others about it.
I was doing this d/s relationship stuff for ten years before I knew it had a name. I was doing bdsm for 20 years without ever setting foot in a dungeon. Fire play? Seriously? People set each other on fire??? WTF? People actually stick needles in each other for fun??? GTFO!
It’s not a crime against BDSM, or humanity, for someone who has decades of experience to not know a kink exists. We don’t all have to know everything about everything in order to participate in BDSM. The entire point of BDSM is that we all can pick and choose the things we learn about based solely on our personal, individual, interests. There’s no doctorate in BDSM that I’m aware of. There’s no Bachelor of Bondage Degree to my knowledge. We do what we like to do. We learn about the things we like to do.
As for everyone “being responsible” for educating everyone else who walks in the dungeon and making sure everyone is safe…just no. This is actually one of the 50 Lies I included in my book 50 Lies Told to New People About BDSM. No one at the party is obligated to educate you in anything going on. This is the word I’ve been seeing used in recent months. Obligated.
When you go to a shopping center, are you personally responsible for making sure no one steals? Are you obligated to stop them? No. That’s what security is for.
When you go driving on the freeway, are you personally responsible for making sure everyone drives within their lane? Are you obligated to inform someone they’re speeding and tell them to slow down? No. They are responsible for themselves.
Suddenly, when it’s BDSM, everyone is personally obligated to everyone else. It doesn’t work that way. It’s a wonderful wish, but it’s not reality.
I’m not responsible for anyone but myself. No one else is responsible for me.
You are responsible for yourself. No one else is responsible for you.
There is another huge lie that BDSM is great for everyone and everyone else will make it gentle and safe for the poor booboo newbie who is obviously incapable of making any decisions for themselves.
Let me set you straight on this right now, because THIS is EXACTLY why and how new people get hurt: They rely on OTHER PEOPLE to protect them, to teach them, to show them the ropes. Why do they rely on it? Because a few idiots in an online forum have told the rest of the world that it’s obligatory and to be expected.
It’s not obligatory. It’s not to be expected. It’s sink or swim time.
What you perceive as the “community” doesn’t owe anyone a damn thing. Not a hot cup of coffee and not your personal safety. Those things are up to you.
I’ve also seen this notion that you personally “owe” the community. When questioned, they couldn’t actually state what you owe your local BDSM community beyond teaching new people.
Here I am saying it again: No one is obligated or required to help anyone else learn a thing.
That shit comes from the heart. It comes from within the individual who wants to do it, and exists only as long as that individual feels like sharing and teaching. I know people who quit holding parties; who quit teaching. One stated (directly to me over my vending table full of floggers) that he’d “already done” his community service and he was at the parties solely to have a good time. That is his right. Choosing to be there solely to have a good time is everyone’s right.
Choosing to teach is an individual decision and not for anyone to demand or require of anyone else. That guy with the great flogger technique doesn’t have to talk you through it if he doesn’t want. The chick who is the bomb with the cane doesn’t have to tell you a thing. You have no right to get indignant if they won’t share. What they can’t do is stop you from watching their scene and learning visually.
No one owes the “community” anything beyond respect for the anonymity and privacy of others.
So remember these two things:
1. No one is required to teach anyone anything.
2. It’s not crime for anyone to decide against performing community service.
Almost invariably, there’s some comment about “saving/protecting the new people from themselves.”
We are not dealing with children here. These are fully grown adults making their own choices. If you wouldn’t tell the neighborhood kids not to skateboard off the roof, but would instead watch it from the safety of your living room (or, worse, record it for youtube or facebook), then don’t be saying we have to protect a grown adult from deciding to go to an adult party and get a spanking or get tied up.
If a new person decides it’s not for them and never returns, that’s fine. That would be much better than holding their hands and luring them along with the false promise of a perfect (and perfectly safe) kinky playland. There’s no such thing on either count.
People forget that the public scene is the smallest portion of kinksters. The people in it just seem very loud because events and groups around them are completely in our collective faces on social media.
The vast majority of people are doing this BDSM stuff solely at home. They are figuring it out all by their own selves. They don’t feel isolated or alone. They want to keep themselves private. It’s just their sex life and they’re perfectly happy not having someone intrude to tell them how to do it or that they’re doing it wrong/being unsafe.
We don’t need a scene full of white knights. You do your thing and be safe about it. Others will learn by watching you.
That’s called leading by example.
TylerRose. is known as Dame Tyler in the NYC public SM/Fetish scene. She is an award-winning author who has written two “lifestyle”, four cartoon, and twentysomething fiction books.
FB Regular page — https://www.facebook.com/TylerRoseAuthor
Read her books on her Amazon page — https://www.amazon.com/TylerRose./e/B00HCPLSP2
You can also find more of her OP/ED work in Fetlife: https://fetlife.com/users/305828
She enjoys crocheting and baking, and will no doubt die with a thesaurus open on her thigh.