Thursday, June 28, 2012

YKIPNOK or Your Kink Is Possibly Not Okay

Haha. I like to play around with acronyms in the kink world because we use them so much. There is the main acronym, BDSM. There is that long one: YKINMKBYKIOK (your kink is not my kink but your kink is OK). There are tons of other ones too. C-NC for Consensual Non-consent, D/s for Dominance and submission, M/s for Master/slave, D/lg for Daddy/little girl.

I could go on but this is a tangent. I'm avoiding the main topic because it's icky, but it's a topic that came up on Fetlife last week when the administrators discovered a thriving subculture of incest/pedophilia fetishists who were either playing too realistically, or being...sadly...real. I'm also not going to talk about that, because to me there's no "possibly" about it. If their posts were real, it's not okay.

But in the course of discussing what to do about these fringe groups, a lot of people became angry about censorship and the policing of people's fantasies. I suppose that's what I'd like to discuss, although I don't have any answers.

The question to which I don't have the answer is...which kinks are okay? And who draws that line that says, it is okay to fantasize about and fetishize THIS criminal act, but not THAT one?

Putting aside the hot button issues of incest and pedophilia, some other controversial groups and play I've seen on Fetlife pretty regularly get a rise. There are the domestic abuse fetishists, who post photos of themselves looking like battered housewives, with blackened, tearful eyes. Are they real black eyes or makeup? What if they were real? Is it okay to give your partner a black eye if it's consensual?

There are also rape fetishists, of course, givers and takers. I see a lot of photos on Fetlife of rape "victims", usually women, and read a lot of stories. I'm assuming this play is consensual, but does it glorify an action that is destructive and vile? Not proselytizing. Just asking. What's your opinion? For me, some part of it disgusts me but another part of me gets turned on. It's icky, like I said.

What about those photos that depict people...again, usually women...with guns placed against their heads, sexual orifices, or inserted into their orifices? The people who post these pictures will be quick to assure us that the play was "safe", ie, the gun was not loaded or had the safety on. There are similar pictures with knives thrust in orifices, or people turning blue with rope or a garrote wrapped around their neck. Is it "safe" or even responsible to play at death and violence? Is it just good, clean, consensual fun?

As you all  know, my generally held opinion is that fantasy doesn't hurt anyone, and that any safe and consensual play is "okay." But sometimes I see things that test my resolve in this area, and sometimes I wonder if playing at something as a fetish doesn't give it acceptable presence in the world that it shouldn't have. Let's revisit, briefly, those pedophilia fetishists. Let's say they were posting about a fantasy, not something they really intended to do or had done. Okay, then, or still not okay?

I don't know. This isn't a post where I am asserting anything because I just don't know the answer. All I really know are my own opinions and gut checks when I see these things. What are your opinions? Are there kinks out there that really aren't "okay" to you personally? Are there fantasies that aren't "okay" that people should feel obliged to keep hidden? Is it something the community should address, or is it something that should be everyone's personal business?


  1. Honestly, there’s no way to police what goes on in someone’s head. But you’d think people would know better than to take those thoughts to a public arena.
    I actually blogged about this a few days ago. Some blogs I follow are largely about ageplay, which is something that interests me. But a couple of them have started using pictures of young girls (under thirteen) – pictures they stole from preteens’ blogs and attached sexually explicit content to. I just don’t see how these people can’t realise they’ve crossed a very serious line there.
    There have been a few discussions about people sharing pictures of battered and bruised women too. As they say: how can you say you distinguish between fantasy and actual abuse when you’re happily sharing photos of abused women who did not consent to what was done to them?
    I have been pretty horrified by some pictures I’ve seen on FetLife (who knew genitals could turn that black from bruising?!), but as the people in them claim it was consensual, I make my amends with it. But when someone takes pictures of real abuse and makes them sexual by posting them on fetish sites, then I have to say these people aren’t about fetish, they’re sick in the head.

    1. Wow – I didn’t mean for my comment to be that long!

  2. Oh, it's fine to be long winded. :-) This is a topic that you kind of have to talk through to wrap your brain around it. And YES, I have seen some scary things on Fetlife and I do wish...ack...I could unsee them.

    I think it's a problem for me because as a BDSM author I friend just about anyone who wants to friend me. So then stuff pops up in my feed that is definitely NOT in my line of interests. :(

  3. This sort of reminds me of a Savage Love column where he answers a letter from a "Gold Star Pedophile" - someone sexually attracted to children who fights said attraction - who wanted help on finding treatment without getting flagged as a sex offender in the process.

    I'd say kinks are kinks, and fantasies are fantasies. Kinks and fantasies themselves harm no one, as a rule. So long as everyone involved is of age and giving informed consent, then it's good, perverted fun. I mean, the whole Daddy/little girl sub-culture is hardly all that fringe, and what is that but a fantasy version of incest and pedophilia/pederasty?

    Things only become a problem if said kinks involve people who can't consent or if they interfere with someone's ability to live a normal life, as in the Savage Love case.

  4. Who knew there was so much confusion. Someone has to be the responsible one. The website owners must have a vision and mission statement, and a charter to help guide them. If this is in place it's not difficult to make a decision as to what should or should not be posted in their web environment.


  5. Ugh, so just the other day I saw an online BDSM community (it was a subreddit) where they were talking about censoring posts. First they were saying posts related to taking drugs (like to act out passed-out fantasies, etc) and I could understand that because the drugs discussed would maybe be illegal and that's a scary place for a community to be in - it could put everyone at risk.

    Then it started to move into should we disallow discussions of a scene that doesn't have a safeword, particularly a rape fantasy... and the idea of censoring that struck me as totally insane. I mean, yeah, site owners or moderators can do whatever they want, but as soon as you start policing things like that the value of the whole community tanks. Then it's just a bunch of people going "I'm so awesome" and, less frequently, "you're awesome!" As opposed to, ya know, actual discussion. The difference between a community and a cult is that a community is allowed to disagree.

    Anytime something is illegal or you're advising someone to do something illegal, it's tricky. So, the pedophilia stuff might count as such, not only if it was unclear whether or not it was real but also because underage erotica is illegal, right? We can do a lot of weird shit (we may not be allowed to SELL IT, thank you Paypal and Mastercard, et al) but we can write it - except for underage stuff. I can't fault any business or individual from wanting to distance themselves from illegal stuff. However, the rest of it, yeah. If you are going to claim to be accepting of kinky folks, then you've got to take people as they come, not try to mold them in your image.

    *deep breath*

    Okay, clearly I have opinions on this topic ;-)

  6. I just read the FetLife official(?) announcement about their stance on this. Basically it was, “If you can be arrested for it, don’t discuss it here.”
    I guess that’s the best way to put it. I certainly don’t like a lot of the stuff I see on there, but the people participating are okay with it, so I guess that is it.