You don’t HAVE to be out
I recently came across an online discussion that started with the question “Why don’t male subs attend events?” It had actually started two years ago, run its course, and stopped. It received a bit of attention here and there, but a few days ago it became active again.
That question has as many answers as there are guys who don’t go to events. The reason really doesn’t matter. What bothers me is the response that guys get when they give a reason for not going to public events – because the vast majority of them were along the lines of, “There is no valid reason for not going to events. You are a sad loser who deserves to be a sad loser if you don’t go to events. So shut up, you sad loser, or go to an event.”
I called the group on developing a bully mentality. Of course, this was immediately met by a chorus of denials. “We aren’t bullying people. We are just trying to force them to do something we want. If it is something that scares them or might damage their professional life; then they just need to man up. What matters is that they do what we want.”
How is that not being a bully?
The original question seemed to be asking for an honest answer. Perhaps enough honest answers from submales about why they are staying away in droves would provide event organizers with some ideas on how to attract them. However, when honest answers (or what appear to be honest answers) are offered; then what happens is someone – or a chorus of someones – seems to feel the need to tear apart the reasons that have been offered. Exactly how does this promote communication?
The answer is that it doesn’t.
From my limited sample of reading other submissive guys’ answers, it seems that a lot of them don’t go to events because they PERCEIVE that they will be treated as second-class citizens. Even if those perceptions are totally false, they are going to use them as a gauge because that is all they have. Simply telling them that their perceptions are wrong is not going to really convince them. Telling them that they are wrong and pointing out that they are a sad, strange little man who is very lonely will only make them feel attacked, and they will clam up.
The fact is that there is a very vocal group of BDSM’ers who seem to believe that the proper answer to every question is: “Just go to a munch!” They say this based on their history, and it’s valid beyond impeachment for them. But they either can’t or won’t see that their history, and their current life, isn’t what some people want or need.
Let’s pretend there are two types of people in the world. Joiners like to go to social events, like munches, because they like being around people and meeting people and they can almost always find someone who is interesting and fun to talk to. Shunners are people who don’t like to go to social events, like munches, because they don’t like being around people, especially people they don’t know, and who usually find being in groups to be hard work and anxiety-inducing and they rarely, if ever, find someone who is fun and exciting to talk to.
If you call them “introverts” and “extroverts” it probably makes more sense, but I don’t like those terms for reasons that don’t belong in this post. For now, there are two kinds of people.
Joiners generally have no problem getting their social needs met, as should be obvious. Shunners, on the other hand, have major problems. Rather than berating Shunners for not being Joiners, or at least not behaving like Joiners every so often, why don’t we ask Shunners what would make them feel more comfortable in joining a group that shares an interest with them?
Or, better yet, why not drop this insistence that everyone become part of a group in the first place? BDSM activities are very personal for a lot of people, and they have no desire to associate with other people based solely on BDSM. It doesn’t matter why they don’t want to. It’s THEIR LIFE. They get to choose if they are out or not.
We have to quit trying to force everyone to conform to what works for us. I love submitting to Mistress Delila, and I think that the F/m dynamic we have is wonderful and amazing and it makes both of us feel loved and appreciated and unique. But I wouldn’t suggest that EVERYONE try it. It’s a shoe that doesn’t fit on everyone. Even within the subgroup that practices F/m lifestyles, very few people would feel comfortable with the exact level that we have found. That’s why it’s so wonderful that the two of us found each other – or why any two people who are in love discover each other.
In the end, a closet is simply a compartment. Living in a compartment built by someone else is stifling and hurtful. But living in a compartment that allows a person to have a peaceful and fulfilling life is, by definition, peaceful and fulfilling.