More Than Kink

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For the last several years my girl and I have been hosting parties to celebrate Halloween or my Birthday.  This includes a variety of folks from our personal & professional lives and includes diverse personalities with rather eclectic tastes such as medievalism, ancient & early music, theatre, dance, the visual arts, role play gaming, psychology and social work, etc.  Several of these (no less than 30%) are actively in the lifestyle as well.  There is always PLENTY to talk about and share without an awkward silence descending upon the gathering.

What I find interesting is that it always seems surprising to some of the folks in the lifestyle that it’s a “vanilla” party.  I am relatively well known for NOT being a casual “player” in the scene.  My style is mostly M/S with edge play, which is not suitable for pick-up play, casual scenes, and sometimes even public play (for a variety of reasons).  I have never hosted a play party and have little interest in doing so. So then why should this be so surprising?

Perhaps those in the scene may not be aware as to who’s-who and feel perhaps there’s little in common. Which is odd, because people are more than just their Kink. We are multifaceted beings, with a life that is more than just our kinks.  We have hobbies, careers, and a multitude of personal stories and experiences.  That’s one reason why I like the intellectually complex and creative folks – there’s always something to explore and enjoy beyond the banal.

Yet, I have also noticed this trend when going on a casual outing with other scene people.  Not always mind you, but on occasion there always seems to be that individual that always steers conversation back to their kink. Sometimes it’s someone that is relatively new, and thus excited about the scene – which is understandable.  Finding a place where you feel more accepted and understood is a great feeling.  But more often these are folks who have been active in the lifestyle for many years, there is little if anything new.

Perhaps I’m overthinking this, but when one person looks at others in only a given light that tells me something about them. It’s very likely they are falling into the trap where the proverbial Carpenter sees everyone as a nail.  I’ve met a few folks who are in sales where they believe that every person is somehow a sale waiting to happen. It doesn’t matter if that’s on a showroom store, as a personal connection – be that friend, family, neighbor, or a relationship. Their worldview sees others as something from which to gain, sometimes to exploit.

It seems only natural, but nevertheless still unsettling, that those in the scene see others in a similar vein. Why else would there be such a focus on telling who is kink or who isn’t unless you are trying to figure out who to target for play?  When the only focus is kink then everyone becomes objectified, little more than means to an end or as potential competition.

Honestly, this saddens me greatly because I would like to give people the benefit of the doubt.  I am just that much more grateful for those that are able to see others in the world as multidimensional and complex beings, not as a thing to be used.

So when you connect with someone at the next munch, or event, or gathering – perhaps ask the question “so other than the lifestyle, what else do you enjoy?”  and watch the windows of the world open before you.

 

-SV-
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