Last fall I read Different Loving: The World of Sexual Dominance and Submission (1996), which was a collection of personal accounts divided into subjects that extended past Bondage and Discipline, Dominance and Submission, and Sadomasochism.
Sidenote: While I was at the Widener Careers conference the other week a (prospective?) student asked me some questions about kink and BDSM. I said that perception varies by person; some people consider kink the umbrella under which BDSM falls, while others feel that BDSM is much broader than the letters that comprise the acronym, so many kinks fall under it. Despite the subtitle, I consider Different Loving a kink book, because much that is described in it can be done outside the parameters, or separate from a dominant and submissive relationship.
Around the same time I discovered an article that I fell in love with by Bezreh, Weinberg and Edgar (2012). Similar personal accounts were included, but there was also the idea that BDSM should be considered as a sexual minority that needs the same kind of education and outreach services for teens that have been established for LGBT youth. It was really poignant to hear that a large percentage of the interviewees could have benefited from hearing that what they were experiencing was "normal" when they were younger. Knowing how to experiment safely was also noted as a hindsight desire.
Although most of you know that teenagers aren't my cup of tea demographic, I still feel concern for them, especially with the advent of books such as 50 Shades of Grey, Rihanna videos, etc. It seems hard enough to get decent sexuality education in schools and we certainly had to fight for LGBT recognition/validation. In the foreseeable future, at least in the south, I cannot imagine that including BDSM or kink will be a reality (especially since from a work standpoint a lot of kink related practices are automatically listed as child abuse under some state laws). I've come up with a few ideas for how I think accurate information could reach teens, but it doesn't really involve the classroom. I would like to hear from everyone of course, but especially educators within the school system about general guidelines and restrictions. For example, I don't know if there is more leniency with extracurricular organizations.
- How do you feel about kink and/or BDSM being considered a sexual minority?
- Do you think kink and/or BDSM should be incorporated in secondary sexuality education? If so, how would you go about it?