Posted at 15:00 on 10 Dec 2020
by Pandora / Blake
As I'm revising my manuscript, I'm cutting out sections that don't fit and posting them here. Become a Patron to get access to cut sections about my personal kink journey, and excerpts from what I'm keeping.
Coming to terms with yourself is a lifetime’s work. For me, it took twenty five years to reach the point where I started to really accepted the kinky sides of my sexuality. Since then, I’ve spent a decade deepening my enquiry, and introducing more complexity and nuance as my understanding has evolved. Rather than killing my desire, this deep dive has had the opposite effect. I’m pleased to say that my kinks have survived the process - in fact in some ways I'm kinkier than ever.
When we embark on this enquiry, we might trip over areas where our sexual desires seem complicated by our politics and our values. “I used to enjoy weird sex, then I became woke and stopped” would be a sad story. Luckily, that's not my story, and it doesn't need to be yours. I enjoy kinky sex, my wokeness is a work in progress, and the combination sizzles with delicious complexity.
The book I'm writing is a call for social and self-acceptance of kinky sexuality, and it’s a manifesto for consensual sexual expression and ethical erotic practice. I’ll come straight out and say it, because you’re going to find out in the first chapter anyway: my sexual fantasies often involve coercion or violence. I've struggled with the question of how to relate to them in a way that feels aligned with my values. Even the thought of enjoying some fantasies in the privacy of my own imagination has made me uncomfortable at times.
If you don’t have these fantasies, and you feel horrified at the idea of someone getting turned on by such a thing, trust me: it doesn’t make us monsters. Just complicated humans, with complicated wants.
If you do have them: welcome. You’re in the right place.
Maybe you have sexual thoughts that you bury because you're worried about causing harm, or because you don’t want to perpetuate violent social patterns. I've met many principled, compassionate kinky people are concerned by the apparent disconnect between their ethical principles and their dirty fantasies. Tops worry that they are terrible people, and bottoms worry that they are self-destructive. But our ethical principles and our dirty fantasies are not only compatible, they can actually mutually support each other.
How kinky fantasies and interpersonal ethics intersect is a complex and fascinating topic. It’s not as simple as “Free expression means I can do what I like”, and nor is it as simple as “Hurting people is wrong”, or “Violent fantasies mean you’ve been brainwashed by the patriarchy”. The truth is, it’s more complicated than that.
I want to inject some nuance into the conversation. Self-acceptance - and even self-love - doesn’t have to be blind or uncritical. It doesn’t have to be based on the idea that ‘anything goes’. The most productive self-criticism comes from an exploration of our own ethics and values, rather than from comparing ourselves with social norms.
I reject the narrative that says because my fantasies are deemed ‘unconventional’ by the risk-averse mass-media entertainment industry, I should feel shame. I am queer, I am trans, I am kinky, and I am not ashamed.
It’s okay to be kinky. It’s also okay to critically examine our sexualities in their social context. Let’s do it together! I’m eager to discover what we can learn by situating our fantasies in wider culture, and using that analysis to develop healthy boundaries and ways of relating.
Creating a more functional, compassionate society starts with the self. Understanding, accepting and loving our whole self, including our sexual desires, is a necessary step to become whole, balanced humans.
Being kinky and principled isn’t a weird accident, or an unresolvable paradox. Rather than contradicting our principles, kinky fantasies can support them by providing a release valve for repressed desires in a controlled, consensual, and pleasurable way.
Kink offers us opportunities to learn about consent, intention setting, negotiation and boundaries - all of which are essential parts of the toolkit for healthy interpersonal relationships.
This is just a taster cut from draft 1 of the introduction, which I ended rewriting in different words. If this tickles your interest, join my Patreon and keep an eye out for updates on the progress of my book. I'm revising 12 chapters which fully dive into the details of how to come to terms with kinky fantasies - watch this space.
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