Kink-shaming

[TW sex, kink, abuse, Trump]

New Year, same old Angry Teddy.

And you lot have really annoyed me this time.

A quick definition:

Kink-shaming: the act of mocking or criticising someone’s specific sexual predilections.

I will point out now that I am no fan of Trump, and will be the first to criticise and lambast his policy and political actions. However, just a couple of weeks ago, I wrote this post about how making fun of his tiny hands or those naked statues is not on.

And now we have the kink-shaming.

This post isn’t about shaming Trump in particular: this post from Bustle does a better job than I would, and I encourage you to read it.

Also this amazing piece from Teen Vogue. I am going to be raving about them for a long time to come, I encourage you to check them out.

I’m talking about kink-shaming in general, and the impact it can have on people.

Because it’s 2017, and the fact we still have the collective mindset that anything other than vanilla sex is “ew, freaky”, and something to be mocked really pisses me off.

It’s also incredibly dangerous.

Kink is any sexual practice that steps out of the norm. The norm being straight people engaging in PiV sex acts. You all should know by now why that is problematic. The kink most people will be aware of is BDSM, as it is slowly becoming a more accepted and mainstream practice. There are lots of others too, obviously, but I won’t go into them here: this list (you have to click an agreement to actually see it) contains more for anyone interested.

What I want to talk about here is the damage kink-shaming can do.

  1. It others people. For the longest time, folks who engaged in kink were usually already marginalised in some way, as as noted above, the norm is straight people sex. This further othering by degrading their sexual practices and likes only served to justify the abuse and neglect they faced in every day lives.
  2. It hides some important information. The simple fact is, everyone experiments during sex at some point. It’s human nature, we’re all inquisitive, and wonder what would happen if I just did… Kink-shaming, and making kink play seem like some sordid, disgusting thing, stops people looking for information, and can result in a lot of very dangerous situations. And I’m not just talking about someone getting trapped in ropes here: aftercare is an important part of BDSM play, as it can cause lasting mental damage if not performed properly. If we can normalise kink, folks are more likely to look for information, and everyone will be safer.
  3. It’s abuse. Plain and simple. You don’t have any right to tell someone else how to live their life, and treating them like shit because of their sexual predilections is abuse.
  4. It makes people scared to speak up against abuse. If someone is made to feel lesser because they indulge in submission sex, how are they supposed to reach out when the dominant partner takes things too far?
  5. It’s none of your business. This is the one that really gets me: what someone gets up to behind closed doors is none of your business unless they choose to share it with you. The gutter press still spends too much of its time reporting on celebrity “sex scandals”, pretending to be moral arbiters and “oh god think of the children” reactions are the norm. And it’s all bullshit. If your friend wants to talk to you about some sexual predilection, they are putting an immense amount of trust in you, and shaming them for it is a pretty shitty thing to do.

 

So the message to take away from this is simple: DON’T DO IT.

If it is something you are uncomfortable talking about, that’s all you have to say when someone brings it up. Don’t make anyone feel like they are “wrong” or unworthy of respect because they enjoy their body or their private time. Be decent to each other.

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