Sane Relative to BDSM

Frequently outsiders (vanilla folks) wonder and sometimes question their sanity when it comes to this lifestyle. Some individuals seek ways to offset the challenges put forward by their neo-puritanical ideals. The ultra-conservative do not realize that they are in and of themselves a subculture and not truly any more normal than the members of the lifestyle.

 

Honesty About Why

Individuals are going to experiment; everyone does who is honest about it.  What you need is honesty and advice not the hypocritical demands of people who have some fanciful idea of how others should live their lives. As this happens, we seek a psychological explanation for:

  • Why we become attracted to activities or aspects of the lifestyle,

  • Why we assume personality traits which are dominant or submissive,

  • Why once involved find it increasingly difficult to return to a “socially conventional” lifestyle or relationship?

 

External Influences

Reading steamy novels, watching edgy movies, or even Japanese Anime with the less than subtle undertones, immersing oneself in many of the classics can all have a much more powerful effect on people than they think.

 

Curiosity and Excitement

The result is curiosity, which leads people to explore or look for specific subjects which resonate within them. It is rare that the cause is porn, more often the porn selected becomes a way of visualizing the situations derived from other sources. When dealing with younger people whose exposure to life can be somewhat sheltered curiosity plays a big factor in their self-discovery. Many derive pleasures from forbidden acts and get involved almost a naughty indulgence on their part.

 

Curiosity becomes Fantasy

The curiosity soon gives way to dreams which allow a person to live out in complete safety and anonymity the inputs they have absorbed. This usually becomes the turning point because now the natural dreams in the nights give way to daydreaming and mental projecting of fantasies. It is upon the start of fantasizing occurs that the curiosity gives way to experimentation.

 

Whether it is fantasies about:

  • Being dominated or dominating someone else,

  • Risky encounters with strangers,

  • Humiliation from being watched or watching others in compromising and demeaning situations,

  • Rough sexual activities up to and including rape,

  • Bondage or restraints even to conceiving of a prison role,

  • Violent acts, such spanking, flogging, whipping or simply being hit.

 

These all take effect, and people will try to discover a little of themselves, and the imagining or daydreaming about fetish activities give way to trying to see if it is as they perceived.  The shift from mere fantasy to experience drives them to discover this with others they are socially or sexually attracted to or comfortable in regular activities.

 

Changes to One's Center

Exposure to the lifestyle activities quickly challenges staid and boring relationships. Individuals frequently part of the discovery is that the same things or activities do not entice the other party. It could also be they so socially or culturally conditioned that it is not possible for them to imagine function in the counter capacity to what the initiator is interested. This stress can occur by itself cause discomfort or a sense of non-fulfillment in the initiator particularly if not realized.  It also can make the respondent feel somewhat at a loss as to why the initiator would need the extra “spice” in the relationship.

 

Creativity Ignites

If it does happen, it can be euphoric as both discover things about themselves which add a creative spark to their lives. The progress usually is slow as the pair discover more about themselves and progressed to varied or intense acts; usually with the encouragement of one or other the pair. Over time, these activities awakened something inside individuals that they only ever daydreamed before. The point at which it becomes a meaningful lifestyle and rather than a game is when instead of just having the body respond, the individual's minds react and anticipate the events. The result is them mentally, spiritually, physically and yes even sexually turned on every time they engage in the scenes they only recently played out in their dreams.

 

Discovery is a Journey

The journey begins with discovering the items which engage you, and these will evolve. It is why frequently interests move out of step to partners which can result in de-intensification brought on mostly by fear and concern over your breaching the norms of sanity. Equally an individual can discover there is stimulation beyond the act, and it was fun for a bit but does not “turn them on” like they thought. These individuals usually revert to a largely socially and culturally conventional lifestyle only rarely “playing” at it. Even when this comes to punishment; empathy is needed. Many dominants favorite way to physical punish is with my bare hand.  The sting in hand allows them to share in the pain while maintaining the sensation of control. 

 

Exceptional Cases

There is a special case to consider; domination and sadism they are not the same thing.  Sadist enjoys the administration of pain and humiliation with little or no regards for the sensation of their subjects. The recipients become mere meat, whereas dominants employ sadistic practices to fulfill the needs of their submissives (particularly masochistic ones). Ridiculous as it seems a mere 100 years ago (less in some cultures) it not only was okay but expected to beat your wives, children, and girlfriends to keep them in line.

 

Finding Freedom in Submission

Many relationships are challenged both at the beginning and in this phase. For whatever reasons the relationship will change, sometimes they end. The changes will occur in a matter of a few weeks, or even years later. If one party always submerged their desire for a long period, once “free” of the constraints in a relationship tend to plunge quickly into a fray of intense activity. They seek a dominant or submissive to help them realize what they have been missing.

 

Drawn back to It

Regardless of how one comes to fetishes, it is the acting on them and the desire to continue or extend the interactions based on them that make this a lifestyle choice. If a long active person goes through a hiatus and withdraws from activities many times, they cease being turned on by the activities anymore. The only satisfying thing is how happy the partner is after engaging in rare acts. Inevitably the results are a more intense affectionate response which becomes comforting and arguably gives justification to the activities.

 

Tolerance

As people become more comfortable with their fetishes and kinks, they become more tolerant of other people’s even if they are not the same. The source of “Your kink is not my kink, but it is okay” derives from this willingness to accept differences.

 

Making it Meaningful

However, there comes the point where unrestricted unconstrained play lacks something. The need for protocols, rules, and structure starts to form as domination begins coming to the foreground. Essentially the activities move from being just a kinky sexual “game” to a way of living. Now there are boundaries and ways to interact with each other, and the possibility of now opening yourself to others like-minded or not. As it no longer becomes a “naughty game” it takes on the aspects of commitment and community.  Behavior outside of the fetish activities adopt the rules, structure, and rigor of those within the activity. No longer is someone only dominant or submissive in the bedroom but abides by it as a part of daily life.

 

Objectification

In 90% of the cases nothing to worry about 2ith treating people as an object. Some individuals derive pleasure from being treated as an object other from objectifying individuals. The taking for granted easily becomes persist and the risk then is that objectification becomes the norm. When the dominant takes less interest or concern about the needs of the submissive then the problems arise. It when the lack of interest or concern for individuals that this becomes problematic. Well in this case almost everyone with the lifestyle exhibits at varying degrees of this behavior but most are aware it is not the end state.

 

A Need for Honesty

Because of the intense honesty and trust required to submit to another in many of the practices and situations within the lifestyle; it is a far more “sane” approach than many of the other practices followed by others. It is the fact that dominants are always painfully aware of what they do, and the ones how to care, are petrified that the submissive will leave. Besides lifestyle enthusiast "know" non-members are not the same and won’t accept fulfilling need based on the darker side of human experience.

 

Acceptance

There is a quietness which settles on the spirit as the experiences are absorbed and the sense of guilt wanes. We begin to balance the ecstasy we feel with what we learn about the social correctness. Reluctance to engage has nothing to do with anything else. It is at this point we remember our mantra, "safe, sane and consensual." All of us in this lifestyle are operate outside of:

  • social norms

  • what is socially acceptable

  • take directions/actions which do not conform to the "accepted" practices. 

 

The one thing you need to realize is there are as many people practicing forms of deviant behavior as there are those defining them. Society applies such labels are used for every single diversion, perversion or thought which a differing group disagrees with no matter how small that group. Image the context of being viewed as a deviant cluster this occurs today in ultra-orthodox communities such as being a Christian in a Muslim country, conversely being a Muslim in a Christian country or gay in a homophobic community.  It is a way of making it easier to control the "them" and somehow makes individuals feel a part of the "we."  Be proud of being non-conformist, because conformity leads down far darker roads than non-conformity.

 

Sociopathy is Cultural, not Universal

If people tell you lifestyle participants (even sadists) are incapable of true love they are full of shit.  That is not the meaning of sociopathy, sociopaths form bonds in slightly different ways from others, but their bonds are as deep and meaningful. Simply put their standards of behavior do not conform to or fit the majority view of social norms. Romance is one of those things which is extremely stylized and differs from culture to culture, being hung up on those factors would make everyone a sociopath to other cultural backgrounds.

 

Defining Sane

In the context of this lifestyle, practitioner defines SANE as keeping the connection between people real, honest, and consensual. Understanding and focusing on the needs and emotional as well as mental state of the partner and ensuring that the outcome is consistent with everyone’s expectations.

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