Friday, June 16, 2017

"Is there a right way?" is the Wrong Question

Please do let me know if splitting this rant up into three separate mini rants makes me seem like less of a sad little hate-monger banging away in the darkness on a keyboard in a parent's basement with nothing better to do.  I don't live in a parent's basement.

Hopefully this will get it all out of my system.

As I've written in the past, I try to be a collector of perspectives when it comes to the lifestyle.  I try to learn enough to understand the different perspectives.  I don't need to like them, want them, or agree with them, but I figure if I know enough to understand their merits, I can at least empathize a little bit, and at worst, act as a translator when two parties end up looking like they are speaking different languages on the same topic.  By doing this I also learn all sorts of fascinating tidbits and reasons that I may not have thought of before... and this has done so much to enrich my own ideal version of the lifestyle I would want.

Hell, half of what I write about comes from taking some concept from a completely different type of relationship than my own and delving into it.  The "why" is often as important as the "what."  The "how" is what makes it feasible. 

My last two posts have talked about frustration with "the one right way" as well as frustrations with the "we are unique, there is no right way."  If you've read my blog for years you are probably familiar that I like to classify, categorize, and define things.  I completely agree with the statement that "there is no one size fits all version of BDSM." 

I will make a completely outrageous statement here.  There are like 5 sizes of BDSM that fit 90% of the population.  Well, I'm half-joking/half-serious with that statement.  I'll expand a little bit in how I tend to view things like "people involved in BDSM."  If you took biology in high school you might remember taxonomy and graphics like these:

It is basically a means of grouping organisms from most general to most specific.  The higher you are on the rank, the more organisms are encompassed.  I view BDSM through a very similar lens.  I've never actually taken the time to break it down, so some of these might seem out of order but I figure I need to actually break it down a bit so I am winging it on the fly.

Domain: All people involved in BDSM.
Kingdom: BDSM is a lifestyle.  BDSM is negotiated consensual scenes.
Phylum: Monogamous.  Poly.
Class:  Loving.  Non-loving.  Non-romantic.

Order:  F/m, F/f, M/f, M/m covers mono.  Poly gets a bit more complicated as it also includes F/f/m, F/F/m, F/f/M, M/M/f, M/m/f, etc.  There are also switches. 

etc. etc.

A married F/m couple with a 24-7 relationship will be something like:
BDSM is a lifestyle > Monogamous > Loving > F/m > and so on.

Once you hit the species level, things feel a bit more unique.  The farther up you trace the progression, the more you start having in common with other people.  I have also found that most disagreements that happen on a fundamental level tend to happen due to differences higher up the ladder.  As you filter down into the smaller distribution groups you will find the people who are similar to you, are in fact similar to you because you share fundamental beliefs about the lifestyle.

This becomes a little more complicated than 5 sizes but I think you will find that as long as you match up with someone on the Kingdom/Phylum/Class level that you will have quite a bit in common with them.  There is a good chance that it will diverge at some point further down, but is that enough of a reason to fall back into the "we are unique, there is no right way" and the accompanying belief that we can't learn from them and they can't learn from us?  The frequency with which people act in that way actually disturbs me. 

Wow... this didn't feel like a rant.  Welcome to a view of the way my nerd brain processes information.

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