Home > Law & BDSM > BDSM and the Law: A Response to a Comment

BDSM and the Law: A Response to a Comment

November 16th, 2010

Just a forewarning, since I’m only halfway through this, and it’s already 900 words.  This is long.  But it’s worth it.

On my post BDSM and the Law: Just One More Reason to be Cautious, Rockin’ left a comment that said:

So, I see what you’re saying, Rayne, but I’m still wondering about something. Don’t these M/s contracts have some way of getting out of them? I remember you wrote a while back on EdenCafe that you could tell M that you didn’t want to be owned anymore and he’d let you go. I think that’s only fair, and I would hope that anyone in a Master/slave or O/p relationship would have a known way out. I wonder what Gina’s was, if she had one. If she tells her master that “it’s over,” does that mean the power exchange? Does he have a right to beat her if there is no more consensual agreement? I understand that he has rights that she has signed over to him, but if she feels like she’s dissolving their contract, I don’t think he has the right to hit her, handcuff her, etc. Anyway, that’s the issue that was bugging me after reading the article and your post. Like you said, “Had either of them thought for two seconds before reacting, this probably could have been avoided.” and I totally agree.

I honestly don’t remember that comment, and have written far too many posts there to go back and search, but I don’t doubt that I said it.  And this is where I come clean. 

I’m not always completely forthcoming about how extreme M’s ownership of me is in my articles on Eden Cafe, because I’d rather not shock their audience into leaving.  Let me make clear that I’ve never been asked to hold back the more extreme details of our relationship. And probably, Carrie will swat me when she reads this.  But knowing what I know about society’s current stance on my position in life, and seeing the reactions to the occasional BDSM cases that show up in the news, I don’t trust all of Eden Fantasys/Cafe’s readers to react maturely to my lifestyle/relationship choices.  Especially since I have no clue who most of them are, or what they believe in, beyond the people I know and love around the blogosphere.  And I will not be the cause of another website’s demise (not that I think I’m powerful enough for that, but you know…) just to put myself out there.  I have Insatiable Desire for that.

For that matter, a lot has changed since I started writing for EC.  For example, if memory serves, when I started writing there, it hadn’t been long since I’d run away.  This breach of protocol did a lot of damage to our relationship, and we pretty much backed off of the owner/property part to figure out where we stood as a couple, and which direction we should go from there.  At that time, I think if I’d asked to be released, M would have let me go in the interest of salvaging the rest of what we have together.  Now, however, that is not the case.

I still have the right to beg release.  I’m allowed, at any time, to at least ask permission to no longer be owned.  But we have a protocol in place for this, and if I don’t follow it, He won’t even consider my request.  And to be honest, even if I do follow protocol, He’ll still say no, if only because we’ve had multiple discussions about what I want Him to do in that situation.  Every time, I tell Him, truthfully, that I don’t want Him to let me go, no matter what.  That I want to be a slave until I die.  And that if it becomes apparent that we’re just not going to work anymore, I’d prefer He find someone to give/sell me to, instead of just releasing me from bondage.

To beg release, I am required to kneel, with my forehead resting on the floor, and my hands stretched out above my head, and beg.  Literally.  When He answers me, I’m required to abide by His decision, regardless of what it is.  This is what I have agreed to, and what I want for myself.

There’s more to it than just His ownership.  If I had the ability to leave whenever I wanted, I would absolutely run when the going gets tough.  It’s what I’ve always done, and probably will be what I always do, no matter how hard I try to avoid it.  It has nothing to do with whether or not I want to “fix” the “problem”, or be with the person I’m running from.  It’s more that facing the embarrassment that comes with being wrong is sometimes too much for me to handle, and I occasionally convince myself it’s too big to “fix”.  So I asked M, when I realized this, not to let me run from Him just because I screwed up.  And He agreed that this was a good course of action.

Besides that, as is evident in the case discussed in that post, sometimes, when tempers are running wild, and people don’t take a moment to think before reacting, we often find ourselves saying and doing things that, with a cooler head, we wouldn’t have said or done.  I absolutely can see myself begging release, if I knew it would be granted without question, any time I get frustrated with my position, and then feeling like an idiot and wanting to take it back when I’ve calmed down.  Neither of us can handle that kind of yo-yoing, and no one should have to.

To answer Rockin’s question about a way out, I must be honest, here, and say that some of us have opted to be in relationships where there is no way out, for whatever reason.  Either because part of our kink is being held captive, for lack of a better description, or because, like me, others know enough about themselves to know they’ll run if given the opportunity.  However, it’s my opinion that this is never a good way to start out, and is very much a decision that should never be taken lightly.  In other words, PLEASE… Get to know yourself, and your partner, before choosing this path.  Unless, you know, part of your kink is the possibility of ending up in a relationship you can’t get out of with a psychopath who will eventually kill you.  If that’s the case, by all means, jump in with both feet.

I wonder what Gina’s [way out] was, if she had one.  If she tells her master that “it’s over,” does that mean the power exchange? Does he have a right to beat her if there is no more consensual agreement? I understand that he has rights that she has signed over to him, but if she feels like she’s dissolving their contract, I don’t think he has the right to hit her, handcuff her, etc.

I had a really difficult time (Read: I suck at research.  Like, fer realz.) finding all the information I’m told is available on the web regarding this case.  From what I understand, their contract is posted somewhere, but I couldn’t find it, so I’m not sure what their protocol for release is.  For that reason, my response to these questions will be based only on my relationship with M.

M and I, in the beginning of our relationship, both had a tendency to at least say we were finished with the relationship, or we were leaving, though we didn’t mean it, rather than trying to work through the issue.  Once we realized what we were doing, and the damage it was causing, we discussed it.  A lot.  The conclusion we came to is that we absolutely want to be with each other “till death do us part”, regardless of the problems.  We decided that, for us, there will never be a hurdle too large.  That as long as we’re together, and we’re both putting in the effort necessary, we can, and will, overcome anything.

Because of this decision, I’m not allowed to say “It’s over.” Well, I mean, I can say it if I want, but M would laugh at me.  And probably slap me for trying to get around the rules.  He’s in the process of training me not to say “I’m done!” when I’m angry or upset, even though I usually only mean I’m tired of arguing, because of the possible misunderstandings.  And usually, He puts me somewhere and blocks my exits when we’re arguing to prevent any possible impetuous actions.  Neither of us has any misconceptions of how impulsive I am when problems arise, and we’ve agreed to do whatever we can to prevent me from reacting in a way that may jeopardize our relationship, His ownership, or His freedom.

Due to the nature of our agreement, if I just say, “It’s over.”, nothing changes.  He still owns me.  I’m still required to obey.  And it is absolutely His right to handle my disobedience and disrespect in any way He sees fit.  However, I also have the right (and probably the responsibility) to apologize, ask Him to consider my mental/emotional state, and beg Him to be merciful in His punishment.

I won’t lie.  If I had been in Gina’s shoes, and walked out to the parking lot of a bar to find M having sex with another woman, I would probably lose my cool, too.  Especially if I wasn’t privy to the possibility.  But not out of jealousy, or anger, so much as being caught completely off guard.  So I do understand why Gina reacted the way she did.  But in the interest of fairness, I have to say that I also understand why Wraith reacted the way he did.

One of the things I haven’t yet mentioned about our release protocol is that we’ve also decided not to make any serious relationship decisions when we’re upset.  So if I beg to be released when I’m upset, regardless of whether or not I follow protocol, He’ll refuse my request on principle.  There will be no consideration or thought involved.  A simple “No.” will be His response.  And I want it that way, too.  I’ve lost far too many friends, and have left far too many decent people with a mouthful of dust, because I was too immature to take a step back and look at correcting a problem I may or may not have caused, rather than just giving up.  That’s something I’m working on.  Not just for the sake of our relationship, but for my friendships, and myself, as well.  I am more than a little tired of running.

Aside from that, in most relationships of this nature, more often than not there’s much more to the release protocol than just saying you’re done.  And for good reason.

I mean, think about it.  How many people, when they’re upset or angry, tell their partner they want out without really meaning it? How many of us occasionally get to a point in an argument where we just can’t take it anymore, and the only thing we can think to do is get away? How many people dissolve their relationships in a moment of frustration, only to realize, when the dust settles, that they really didn’t want it to be over?

And really, would you be able to trust your own freedom and safety to someone who treated your relationship like something you can turn on and off with a switch? Who would revoke your right to… whatever just because they’re upset, or jealous? I know I wouldn’t.

If M and I had been in this situation, I’ll admit, I would have been angry.  I would have been surprised, and probably a little embarrassed.  I mean, here I am, walking out to the parking lot to see what my owner’s up to, expecting Him to just be hanging out with a friend, or something, and instead, He’s having sex, and I’ve just interrupted something I didn’t even know was happening.

Beyond that, I’ve been in situations where my partner (Not M, just to be clear.) was having sex with other women, and keeping it from me.  I remember the humiliation that came with realizing I was the only one who didn’t know.  And I understand the emotions that go along with that.  I imagine that, even though M is allowed to do whatever He wants with regard to other women*, being caught off guard like that would provoke some of the same emotions.  Especially if it turned out I was the only one who didn’t know.

However…

I do not have the right to throw a temper tantrum over it.  I don’t have the right to beg release** because of it.  And I definitely don’t have the right to revoke my consent to His ownership over it without His permission.  Especially in public.

I can say, with a good amount of certainty, that if we found ourselves in this situation, M would have reacted similarly.  The night would have ended for us.  If He had restraints at His disposal, He would absolutely put them on me, and take me home.  He probably would beat me.  He probably would keep me chained up until I calmed down and approached the situation like a respectful, adult slave.  And He absolutely would refuse to release me.  And because of our agreement, He would be well within His right.

Was that the case in Gina’s and Wraith’s agreement? Maybe.  Like I said, I wasn’t able to find their contract.  But according to her, now that she has managed to take a step back and look at the situation with a clear head, the whole thing was blown way out of proportion.  According to her, she wasn’t really revoking her consent.  She was just upset, and ran off at the mouth.

Who knows if it’s true? Certainly not me.  But regardless, it’s my opinion that begging release, and revoking consent, should be based on more than anger and jealousy.  That it really shouldn’t be an acceptable reaction.  And that Wraith was right in refusing to accept her request based on Gina’s emotional response.  I know for a fact that if it were us, M would have made me wait to make that decision until we’d had the chance to discuss the situation, and figure out whether or not we could work through it.

And honestly? I think that’s the way it should be.  But I guess not everyone agrees.  And hey, that’s life.  Differences of opinion are a good thing in my book.

*I just wanted to mention here how this works for us, though I’m sure I’ve talked about it before.  The only requirement, in these situations, is that M be honest with me.  I understand that sometimes shit happens, and I don’t expect Him to be all, “I really want to fuck you, but I promised my slave I’d tell her first, so I have to call her real quick.  Hold that thought!” I mean, how silly would that be? But if He finds Himself in a situation like that, He’s required (by His suggestion and agreement) to tell me about it at His earliest opportunity.  I honestly do not care what He does outside of our relationship as long as I’m not kept in the dark.  Which is a change.  A few years ago, I was rather torn on this subject.  These days, though, I realize that a piece of ass (in the “I fucked her.” sense, not the “She’s nothing but a piece of ass.” sense) isn’t going to take M away from me, regardless of His feelings for the other girl.

**In our case, begging release should be about just plain not wanting to be owned anymore, and not because something happened that I didn’t like.  Because honestly, there will always be things I don’t particularly care for.  It’s part and parcel of being owned by a sadist who gets off on doing things to me that I don’t like, and being a masochist who gets off on enduring things I don’t like to please my owner.  I mean, the hottest part of that caning scene M took pictures of was the fact that a lot of it was more pain than I’m really able to handle.  Besides that, regardless of relationship choices, life’s not always fair.  And really, it would be silly to just throw away everything we’ve worked so hard to achieve over a mishap, or being subjected to something I’m not interested in.  Especially considering, as I just mentioned, my enjoyment of enduring for His pleasure.  This is also something we’ve agreed upon.

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  1. October 9th, 2013 at 05:44 | #1

    As a dominant who has been in a relationship with a slave, I have mixed feelings.
    I would certainly have restrained my slave and refused them leave of me if we had an agreement. However, was there also an agreement from the master that he had broken?
    These types of relationships can only work based on very strong trust. If that trust is broken by the dominant then the sub can become very frightened and insecure.
    This is bound to lead to problems in the master/slave relationship.
    Being a dominant doesn’t mean you can be dishonest or untrustworthy. In fact, it means you need to be more trustworthy than most – the slave is effectively giving up their life and handing all power to the master.
    Very interesting article.

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