My Master says, "You look for reasons to be offended, pissed." Yes, He's right on that often enough, although not always literally.
I already mentioned the FB censorship of consensual BDSM pages a few days ago. Well in the midst of screen shots from the "Women, Action, and the Media" page (which denies its involvement despite screen shots proving their involvement), I came across one screen shot that seriously angered me.
I couldn't find that particular one when I went looking for it yesterday, but I'll summarize the paragraph as I did for friends:
BDSM is violence, always, and is nothing but violence is it's impossible for a woman to consent to it. Therefore any woman who identifies as a submissive is really just a domestic abuse victim.
More than just the censorship of consensual BDSM pages, the woman who seethed this opinion angered me. "So I can't consent to our relationship, Master?" I vented at Him. "I am not a domestic abuse victim" appeared in at least one status message of mine on FB. The very idea that this woman, under the auspices of feminism, was declaring my agency invalid pissed me off.
Of course, it's not as simple as that. Yes, I've heard arguments similar to hers in the past. There are a few problems within them. The equation that BDSM is only violence is a problem for me. While it isn't always the case, for me (and for most of my writing) BDSM is a lived part of a committed relationship.
Violence being wrong is another problem. Is it just wrong in this situation because it's within a romantic relationship? Hearing "violence," what comes to mind for me is a variety of sports (like football, bull fighting), human rights' abuses in factories, foreign countries, school bullying. Not a consensual BDSM relationship in which two or more individuals are interacting for mutual pleasure.
I'm sorry to admit that how to rebut the "domestic abuse" charge escapes me at the moment; I'm with my Master at a gaming store and have no internet connection. I know I've read BDSM writer rebuttals however; on Leather & Grace UUs for BDSM Awareness' website, there is a section in BDSM basics for UUs that talks about it- http://leatherandgrace.wordpress.com/bdsm-basics-for-uus/bdsm-versus-abuse/ . I think I remember the big difference being about open, honest, discussed consent. And this woman is saying that I can't consent!
Another problem with that woman's comments are their heteronormative world view. She doesn't leave space for female dominants, male submissives, gender queer or same sex pairings. She only acknowledges Male dom, female sub pairings and assumes a homogeneity that just doesn't exist. Yes, my Master is a cisgender man and I am His cisgender female submissive. However, we are polyamorous and we do have a discussed agreement around that. While I'm cisgender, when talking about sexual orientation, I identify as queer, using the UUA definition of the identity. We may look like the patriarchy-based relationship this woman scorns, but our identities make a lie of that image.
Now going in a different direction, I want to share a (possibly unfair) summary I made for one non-BDSM friend; she understands quite a bit about BDSM despite not being into however. I said:
It seems common among heterosexual pairings that the female submissive talks, reads, writes, thinks about BDSM constantly, including philosophical consideration of consent far more than the male dominant.
I can tell you that, especially if you've read more than one blog post of mine, that is definitely the case for my Master and I. I even engage in education and activism around BDSM (often with L&G). So it baffles me that this woman is saying I can't consent. Does all this thought I engage in about BDSM mean nothing then?
In the final analysis, I have to ask what this all means. This woman isn't alone in believing this way. Sometimes I will ask rhetorically, has this woman ever spoken to anyone like me? It's easy enough to read someone's blog post and disagree, but has she ever looked into the eyes of a female submissive and truly heard her story? I doubt it. The National Coalition for Sexual Freedom has been engaged in it's "Consent Counts" program awhile now. What will it accomplish? Will it manage to educate anyone like this woman? I sure hope so.
So I started this out with a quote from my Master. I can almost hear some feminist decry, "Her master has taken her self-esteem so she can't even think for herself." But notice, yes, I quoted, Him, but I didn't say He's always right or that my tendency to offense is good or bad- this if for me to judge and Him to react to. :D