Do people think that the similarity between “sub drop” and the responses to trauma are actually all that different?
Oh yay! I talk about this all the time, but I’ve never seen it laid out in such a clear juxtaposition like this. Thank you!
Also check out This One’s For the Invisible Girl for some of my own experiences working through this thing. And basically the entirety of The Bandana Blog for some discussion of the inherent rape apologism and abuser dynamics in BDSM and, most importantly, the fact that it’s possible to have creative, interesting, “kinky,” exploratory, psycho-emotionally charged, political boundary-pushing, deeply healing-oriented, super hot sex without including that kind of unconsidered abusive hierarchical D/s power dynamic.
Yep. The BDSM subculture’s “D/s” is inherently an abuser dynamic. It’s intentionally created in that image.
It’s a binary: two things, kept in direct opposition to one another, that are believed to require one another to be whole. This is how straightness works, too: compulsory heterosexuality is cultural programming that tries to instill a fetish—and I use that word advisedly—for “the opposite sex”. Its goal is to make women feel like they need men for sexual fulfillment, and to make men feel like they need to not be women to be men.
We know culturally enforced straightness is bullshit Because Lesbians (and queers and bisexuals and on and on), but some people (men, mostly) still get ragey when they contemplate the fact that an entire demographic of people (“men”) are completely unnecessary for an entire other demographic’s (“Lesbians”) sexual fulfillment.
In a word: it’s abusive. Don’t do it. But BDSM’ers do, all the time. Here, I fixed one of their stupid Tumblr gifs where they did that thing:
But “D/s” cultural programming is actually worse than straightness because rather than saying “given demographic A needs given demographic B to exist for sexual fulfillment,” it’s saying “given demographic S needs to be submissive to given demographic D for sexual fulfillment.” If the demographics you said that about were “women” and “men,” a lot of people would think you’re scum.
In a word, saying that is abusive. Don’t do it. And yet BDSM’ers not only do do that, they loudly declare that this is something that makes them “no different from anybody else.” Hell, I’m not even saying they’re wrong about that: the actions of the pastors in The Church of BDSM doesn’t strike me as very different than the actions of the pastors of The Church of Jesus Christ. But that’s not something I consider a point in their favor, y’know?
The BDSM subculture is the aggregate set of ideas, beliefs, and arts of the people (a culture) who eroticize the pain, torture, suffering, and abuse of a specific demographic of people (Submissives). For an individual, on an individual level, eroticizing trauma can sometimes be healing, but turning that individual experience into a social institution, especially one with political and legal force, is totally irresponsible. It’s irresponsible in the same exact way creating a religion, like Christianity, or FIFA fútbol (World Cup Soccer), would be.
And for all their chest-thumping, BDSM’ers are not even ambitious. They’re just further atomizing sociosexual facets of human beings into yet-more-dichotomous components for the benefit of a certain demographic’s orgasms. “MAKE ME A SAMMICH, SLAVE!”
Been there. Done that. Can we please do something else, now?