Tuesday, November 17, 2009

PSA: Fucking him isn't fucking the patriarchy

Hey guys, life is a little crazy at the moment, so I'm a little strapped for time. I decided to cross post some of my entries from Cuntlove here because 1. I'm really proud of them and 2. I've really enjoyed some of the discussion they've created (Also even my best friend/roommate doesn't usually read my entries from there, so I can't expect you all to either). I'll be posting something original for my later in the week post, but here's my first offering from my cuntlove backlogs.

I am a feminist. I took lots of women and gender studies classes in college, I ran in circles with the “women in leadership and learning” girls, I have defended everything from my right to my body to my right to stay home and raise a family if that’s what I want. I’m a card-carrying member, and wave my feminist flag high. For me, it has always meant my right to choose whatever is best for me, as long as it didn’t hurt anyone else.

Imagine my surprise when I learned from my friends that no, being a feminist came with certain obligations, and certain things it was understood that you just didn’t do. You didn’t want to stay home to care for your kids and house. You didn’t take stereotypically feminine jobs like day care or teaching. You would never be in porn or the sex industry. And finally, you would never, ever, let some man tie you up and hit you for pleasure.

I was a submissive in an S&M relationship for about three years. Even some of my most sex positive friends were horrified and appalled at my behavior. I was kneeling at the feet of a man? I was serving him? I was letting tie me up, hit me, force me to do things against my will? What was wrong with me? Didn’t I know I was supposed to be strong, independent, and completely in charge of my own sexuality?

I would look at them, sigh, and buckle down for the fight. These women always had the best intentions, wanting to save me from myself. They also had never been in and D/s relationship and had no understanding of the BDSM community. Yes I knew all these things I was “supposed” to be. I also had to explain that I was all those things, just not in a way they understood it.

In BDSM there is a well known concept of “topping from the bottom” meaning that the sub of the relationship is really in control. Though safe words, preset limits, and lots of communication, the sub sets the rules and has the right to stop and change a scene whenever they want. The fun of being a sub is knowing that you can lose control and test your limits within these boundaries that you have already set. Loosing control in a very controlled way as it were.

However, even with all of this, the most important point is, what I do in my bedroom has nothing to do with who I am outside those walls. If I submit to a dominant partner, that does not mean I would ever submit, as a woman, to anyone else. It doesn’t mean I would accept substandard treatment or any requirements based on my gender. It’s a single relationship with a single other person (or multiple other people, but you get my point). It does not translate into any over arching belief about women or men.

The flip side is also true. Recently I’ve been enjoying being a dom, to sexual partners that happen to be men. This is something I think is fun and interesting. It has nothing to do with my “rage against the patriarchy” or my desire to put a man in his place. It’s about my desire to put this man in his place. You should never bring your outside feelings into an S&M, as a top or bottom, but tops need to be particularly controlled. There is no bringing in you “Men as oppressors” rage, no “I had a shitty day at work” rage, no “he/she pissed me off last night and now I get to pay it back” rage. None of that. It’s just you and them, you helping them to explore their boundaries, them trusting you to do it safely and within their limits. Anything more or less would be a betrayal of the trust and understanding required for such and exchange.

So yes, I’m sometimes a dom. Yes, I’ve tied up, beaten, held down and forced both men and women. Yes, I’m also sometimes a submissive. Yes, I have been tied up, beaten, held down, forced. Yes I’ve been called a bitch, slut, whore, and cunt. Yes, I’ve catered to my dom’s every need. Yes, I’ve even explored rape fantasies. And yes, I’m still a card-carrying feminist.

3 comments:

  1. You're kinder than I am, to say that your horrified feminist friends had "the best of intentions" in wanting to "save you from yourself;" or maybe better friends. My experience has been that people like that have decided that the most basic adult right--self-determination--was beyond me. Their arrogance horrified me. New friends were in order for me. :)
    You seem to have decided early on, as a wise woman put it, "I didn't become a feminist to be told how to be a good girl." Good on ya!

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  2. Thank you so much for this post. You put everything I think, feel, and experience into words.

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  3. love Love LOVE This Post!!

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