Day 16: What are the most difficult aspects of having a sexuality that involves kink or BDSM for you personally?
Oh boy, this is going to be hard. No guts, no glory …
The answer to this (like many aspects of a person’s personality, I suppose) has significantly changed over time. As a young, budding perv the overwhelming feeling I dealt with day in and day out was shame.
I just knew I was different. To a teenager, different = damaged = freak = worthless. When I was young and, really up until a few years ago (I’m in my mid thirties now, if anyone wonders), I spent most of my time just burying who I was. Burying it deep. Is that the kink version of “in the closet”? I suppose it could be somewhat analogous to that. I think it’s simpler though — it was a complete and utter denial of a vital aspect of my personality, and what made me uniquely me.
For those of us who are kinky, just admitting what we are/like/want is difficult enough; I suspect there are many of us who never even quite get to that point. For me, it was worse … because I was (am) a sadist.
Note to those of you who may be freaking the fuck out at that admission (hopefully there aren’t any, but just in case), please read through my earlier entries on this blog in the 30 Days of Kink. Those entries should clarify for you what I mean by “sadist”. Hint: it definitely doesn’t mean I’m a serial killer. Mmkay).
Believe me when I tell you, it was a long, harrowing road to get from here to there. How would you like it as a young kid to wonder:
– If you were irretrievably broken?
– If somehow people might be frightened of you?
– If you were simply nature’s aberration?
– Why modern psychology’s idiotic definitions (don’t get me fucking started on that subject, dear Lord) essentially labeled you as someone that yes, was broken, was a simple biological aberration?
Yeah, heavy, heavy shit. When you’re young, and dumb, and have zero perspective, everything seems Earth-shattering, immediate, profound. Your problems seem so unique, as if nobody on Earth has ever had to deal with what you’re struggling with.
Then you grow up and realize you are but a tiny, tiny speck of nothing in an unimaginably immense universe of everything — and all of this, and I do mean all of this, has happened before. Over and over and over again.
For some people, that’s a terrifying realization, but for me it was freeing. My problems weren’t insurmountable. Hell, my “problems”, weren’t even problems — they were just me.
So, there’s the self-doubt out of the way. Now comes the isolation. Yes, in this interconnected world isolation (at least in the modern west) should slowly become less of an issue. We hope. For those of us old enough to remember life before the connectedness of the Intertubes though, isolation was a huge concern. There just are only so many pervs to go around. Depending on the research (and the researchers’ particular definitions) I’ve seen online, the percentage of people who practice some form of BDSM are anywhere from 1-25% of the general population. Now, this may be self-serving, or simply wishful thinking on my part, but I suspect the actual number is closer to the upper end of that range.
Somebody bought those metric shit-tons of bodice rippers in the 70s-80s.
Somebody bought all those copies of 50 (yes, I know, I know — the damaged hero trope was what really roped in — heh — the 50 readers. I still ain’t buyin’ that rationalization).
Somebody watches (and pays for) all that internet BDSM porn.
Okay, I’ll get to my point. Though maybe 15-20% (my estimate) are pervs of some stripe, that still leaves us as islands in a sea of vanilla. Worse, the BDSM umbrella is so broad that the spectrum underneath it from A to Z is incredibly diverse. How many of that 15-20% are like me with a penchant for both pain/impact play AND total power exchange? 1% of that 15-20%? Maybe not even that — but you see what I’m getting at here.
Isolation is still a serious hindrance to pervs the world over. The internet is a lifesaver for us, as even if we can’t connect physically, we can communicate with like-minded souls.
The last one I’ll mention is perhaps the most vexing (and sometimes painful) one of all. The feeling of “otherness” in relation to your fellow man. The society we live in is oriented around the vanilla, and for good reason — vanilla is what most of us are, and it works, generally. But pervs always feel as if we are on the outside looking in, both on a societal level and a personal one.
How many of us can speak freely about who we are at the workplace? At home? Or how about in the unassailable redoubt of our own minds? Vanilla people by definition won’t understand, simply because it’s beyond their human experience. Okay, that’s not fair — some do. But to most it’s a baffling mystery at best, disgusting perversion at worst. I’m not worried about those people. What I think pervs struggle the most with is having to keep that part of them from those that are closest to them. It’s akin to walking around with a suit of armor or a mask on your entire life — one you take with you to work, to that Thanksgiving dinner with your family, to your fucking doctor’s office. It never, ever comes off, and it gets to a point that you forget how to take it off. How to be that fully formed person you are. Perhaps that shielding of oneself becomes a permanent part of you.
It did with me. I’m trying to remedy that, but it’s a struggle — and I suspect it always will be. Being able to talk to you helps. It helps a lot. Even if only one person ever reads this, and gains a modicum of perspective, a glimmer of hope, a sense that they can change and start being who they really are … well then all this will have been worth it. Until Day 17.