My first sexual relationship was a BDSM situation, because I had been groomed by a bunch of weirdos (both online by strangers and in IRL by society and my abusive family) to turn my deep emotional hurt and sorrow and self-loathing into literal, physical self-harm and abuse.
I had always thought I would make a great dom, because I had so much hate and rage that I wanted to get out in a cold and calculating fashion (without getting arrested, because, hey — kink is sacred!). But people told me I would make a great sub, and they broke me until I believed them. I subbed. It was terrible. I won’t go into detail, but you can imagine.
Lots of BDSMers hear that story and say “you just had a bad dom! or bad doms, or a bad scene”, or they say “you just mustn’t be wired that way after all!”
But they don’t realize that a.) lots of other women have said the same things I’ve said, so either there are a whole lot of bad doms or the whole scene is just really fucked up, and either way somebody should probably pay attention to that,
and b.) I don’t think anyone is truly wired like that, from birth, but if you’re talking “worn down to the point that they eroticize their own abuse”, then yeah. I’m the real deal too. I don’t have BDSM sex fantasies, and it’s debatable whether or not I ever really did — but for example, to this day, in the depths of my sorrow and PTSD-brain, sometimes the only way I can fall asleep is to imagine hanging myself. Some people count sheep, I imagine falling to the end of a rope and breaking my own neck over and over again until it soothes me to sleep. That still doesn’t mean I need to have some real-life asshole flaying me alive and fucking with my brain for fun or profit, because that means some dude gets off on torturing someone whose mind already tortures itself, and if you can’t see why that’s fucked up I don’t even know how to help you.
It is true, and very much to the point, that women are objects, commodities, some deemed more expensive than others - but it is only by asserting one’s humanness every time, in all situations, that one becomes someone as opposed to something. That, after all, is the core of our struggle.
Andrea Dworkin, Woman Hating
Andrea Dworkin, Woman Hating
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