Today is a day we are supposed to celebrate our freedoms we have here in America. People fought and died so that we could be a free country. The thing is I think half of them would roll over in their graves if they knew how we Americans have taken our basic rights of freedom and changed their meanings so they are not even recognizable.
This post is about the freedom to do whatever the hell you want to do regardless of how it affects others, because whether we are talking about the precise expectations in the kink community for following manners about touching, approaching others, public dungeon play etc. or talking about basic everyday stuff in vanilla land, some people missed manners 101 while becoming adults.
Now I am one who does not care what fork you use at the table or if you stick your pinkie out when you sip tea, and I may look at you funny if you decide to pick up your plate and lick it in public. Those things don’t affect me, but those who walk around completely oblivious or worse, not oblivious but simply not caring if their behavior is offensive, drive me crazy. I think one reason I so value the kink community is because protocol in BDSM relations hasn’t completely dissolved like it has in society as a whole. Manners still matter. Of course, you still get people behaving ignorantly, but there are far less people who behave that way when I am out and about at munches and at kink events. There is still the rampant case of bad manners on the internet both in kink and non-kink in chats and on social media sites, but in person; we tend to have much better behaved people as a rule. To that, I say thank God.
And so I must drag out my soapbox and do a bit of ranting at those people who think the use of good manners is an option. I know very well that I am using my right to free speech every time I post on this blog, and my right to speak about sexuality, gender, sexual orientation and kink is one I am very aware and grateful of. That said, I use manners. I do not agree with a lot of things I read and I know that others do not agree with me 100% of the time, but so far, we have all pretty much voiced our opinions in a socially acceptable way even though being anonymous on the internet makes it easy to do a hit and run.
Here is the list that those who read my posts are used to:
Your freedom to drive a car doesn’t mean you have the right to be reckless, and it does not give you the right not to follow the laws about having a driver’s license and driving so as to cause accidents when you don’t have insurance.
Your freedom of speech and expression does not give you the right to talk so loud as to interrupt all conversations around you, talk on your cell phone while driving, write offensive emails and posts on the internet, and basically running around being an ass to everyone whether they want your opinion or not. Have some manners. You may have the right to preach hate and bigotry, but I have the right to ask you to shut up, challenge your opinion, and turn my back and walk away.
Your freedom to live where you want without discrimination does not give you the right to live how you want if it means reducing the quality of life for your neighbors. Use your manners for heaven’s sake. Turn down your music, and that means in your car when arriving home or leaving, stop mowing your lawn in the wee hours of the morning, clean up your dog’s poo, and keep your yard at least semi nice looking.
Your right to parent as you please as long as you do not hurt your children does not give you the right to allow them to run wild and cause havoc and destruction. If you stay in a hotel remember there are other people there, if you are at a restaurant don’t let them run wild. If you are out in public, teach them that the strangers they see matter and that they need good manners when in society. Don’t barge about, don’t scream, cuss, ram into people, take things that aren’t yours and act as if you and they are the only ones in the universe.
If you have a difference of opinion with someone, then walk away if you cannot resolve your difference in a peaceful manner with intelligent conversation. Your right to bear arms doesn’t mean you can shoot those who get on your last nerve, just like my right to bear arms doesn’t mean I can bonk people of the head or on the ass with my giant spanking spoon.
Pull up your fucking pants, wear clothes that cover your ass crack and tops that do at least a semi good job of keeping your boobs from spilling out. At kink events, we dress in outfit that are super sexy and our partner may be nude on the cross or spanking bench, but in public show some decency.
Now for tying this into kink:
If you wouldn’t say it to a woman in person, don’t say it in an email. Really, think about what you send to people. If you wouldn’t want anyone to say it to your sister or mom, then shut up. Kinky doesn’t mean promiscuous, and it doesn’t mean you can write and ask me to humiliate you and use a strap-on on you. That is offensive.
If you play in the dungeon, clean up your stuff in a timely manner so others can play. Clean the equipment with the sanitizer provided, and do not interrupt a scene. If you want to put your stuff down and be in place for using the cross next, do it quietly and unobtrusively.
Don’t touch other people’s toys without asking.
Don’t touch other people’s people without asking. This includes hugs.
A submissive person is not YOUR submissive person. Don’t expect them to fetch you things at a munch or event.
Refrain from calling a dominant Mistress or Master if they aren’t YOUR Mistress or Master. The only people who get to call me Mistress are those who are my submissives.
Our level of protocol is not your level of protocol, but please be respectful of how we live our kink lives and the rules I have for my wife and the way we do things. If you are offended by the fact that we wish to have dominants contact me prior to contacting her, then go make friends elsewhere. Sorry, but it’s our dynamic. I am protective and possessive of Beauty.
Loud, brash, rude, ill-behaved people at a munch or kink event draw attention to those of us who wish to keep a low profile. You may not care if the world knows you are kinky. Some of us have to care very much.
My kink may not be your kink, your kink may not be my kink, but what I do, and what you do is not anyone’s business as long as it is safe, sane, consensual, AND, it doesn’t negatively affect me and mine.
To some people BDSM and the kink community is a very serious thing. They function on high protocol, live lives governed by a set of rules grounded in the leather or Gor culture. They feel this kink thing is a very serious thing always. I have a serious attitude about relationships, responsibilities regarding relationships, and how my BDSM family functions, but I can also be ridiculous as hell when I play with Jud. Others just feel as if this kink thing is all fun and games without responsibilities. That is their right though I do not agree, and manners dictate that, and while I may drag out my soapbox, I must do it respectfully. Please use the manners your mother taught you when dealing with others and their beliefs.
What it all boils down to is that old golden rule. Do unto others, as you would have them do unto you. You may not give a fuck about others, but we live on a planet that has a population of over 7 billion people. We all have different cultures and different beliefs, but manners are universal. Say please and thank you, say, you are sorry, clean up after yourself, don’t take things that aren’t yours, don’t destroy or damage what others have made, and don’t act like a loud, boorish, uncaring ass in public.
Embrace your freedoms. We are truly lucky that we have the freedoms we have, but don’t twist that freedom into something hateful, offensive, and disrespectful. Use the manners your mother taught you, and if she didn’t teach you manners, then use the ones I just bestowed upon you.
Thank you for taking the time to respond to my post. It means a lot to me.
I like to be consistent. My online transactions are as important to me as are my fact-to-face encounters, regardless to whom I may be speaking—family, friends, acquaintances, or strangers. For me, all are deserving of respect, consideration, and empathy.
Personally, I don’t understand how some can be so hateful. We can choose to disagree. Why not let it go at that.
Thank you for clarifying the proper way to address others. I like Ma’am. The word comes easily when I address you, maybe because of my respect for both you and Beauty. It started after she posted a picture that said, “I love you,” written in the sand, a sentiment meant only for you. There isn’t enough tenderness in the world that compares.
You’ve delivered an important admonishment regarding manners, one I should head a little more carefully. Due to ignorance, and out of respect, I made the mistake of referring to you as “ma’am” in some of my previous responses. I’m not active in the BDSM community, so I didn’t know the proper protocol.
My brief time on Twitter has been a very positive one, but I do stay away from religious and sociopolitical topics. The vitriol and ill will in many of those discussions I find intolerable and sometimes offensive.
I’ve even stopped responding to disparaging remarks leveled against women and members of the LGBT community. Such chauvinism and bigotry are impervious to even the most well-honed arguments in opposition.
It would appear that our society has a long way to go toward embracing tolerance and compassion. Far too often, I feel, some of the rude behavior online reflects an unwillingness of others to own the shadow side of their personality. Unfortunately, some individuals unwittingly project their dark and unacceptable content on to others, and then react negatively to the illusion they have created.
Thank you for your insight. I agree on many points. The fact that people know they can hide behind their computer makes them do and say things that can be very hurtful or spout off hate because the people in their lives who may find those ideas distasteful at best will never know.
As for the Ma’am, that term is fine. In the kink world if you wish to use a term that conveys politeness, Ma’am and Sir can be used. It is the intimate terms of mistress and mater that are reserved for those in kink relationships unless someone prefers to be called Mistress so and so. On the other hand, a dominant who insists that all sub missives call them Sir, Miss, or Ma’am are out of line.
Thank you again for your comment.
Thank you for such a lovely compliment.
Perfectly put throughout!!!
Agreed, all around!
Thank you Katherine. I have etiquette and obnoxious displays of stupidity.