March 12, 2010

What Is Real?

This lifestyle uses the term 'real time' to distinguish those who live this lifestyle in person as opposed to online. Obviously, from the terminology, the in person relationships are more real. Hence, online is called a virtual community. It mimics real life but is not quite reality. At least this is the common presumption.

All this leads to question what is real? Many claim that online relationships are every bit as real as those offline. They assert that all the emotions felt in person are experienced within an online relationship. Therefore, in their estimation, online BDSM is just as valid as offline.

To me, this is an argument that does not hold true. I find it ironic that people treat BDSM interaction this way when they will not do the same in the traditional world. Let me ask this, have you ever heard of an online marriage? Certainly it is possible that people engage in this behavior in different chatrooms. However, would anyone in their right mind justify it as real? I think most rational people would claim that an online marriage is a farce when compared to the realities of marriage in general. You married people know exactly what I am talking about.

Nevertheless, this is just one man's opinion. What is real for someone else is not for me to say. However, I can tell you that many people I encounter online, when meeting them in person, seem to lack the social skills necessary to interact in person. They behave in immature ways while exhibiting behavior that could require some professional help. It seems as if they exist to live online because it allows them to escape the responsibility of dealing with real life.

Certainly a case could be made that these people are experiencing life as they see it. The fact that it is online should not make a difference. However, people in psychiatric hospitals also experience life through their own eyes. Again, most would say that these people have something wrong with them.

This brings me to another situation: what about the one who is waiting around for him or her to return? This reminds me of the one who became an old maid waiting for someone to sweep her away. Even if one knew another in person, waiting for them to return might be considered unreal behavior. Many go off to war only to send home 'Dear John' letters because they met someone else (or receive them while in the service). Is it worth waiting around for another?

Obviously this answer depends upon the situation. My first question is 'what did you really have before'. A wild weekend of sex does not mean that one will return to you. I remember a girl I knew in college who feel 'head over heels' for a guy who visited from up north on Spring Break. She was convinced that he wanted her since she gave him her virginity. Of course, she was crushed a couple of months later after he finally told her that she was nothing more than a fun time.

What was real? Even though she met him in person, her expectations of him returning to her were way off base. She was involved in a deeply committed relationship while he was into getting laid. This minor difference made for a total waste of time on her part. Her fantasy was smashed when he hit her in the face with reality. How often do we see this online? The revelation of the truth often pops that self-generated ideal in our minds. Whether it is misleading or mis-communication, people are often filled with ideas that are separate from reality.

My opinion is this is what happens in the online BDSM relationships. To start, the greatest percentage of them are filled with people who are complete fakes. They are into role playing, online sex games, or getting their rocks off by taking someone for a ride. Whatever their motivation, the simple fact is that one is not dealing with the truth. Hence, the entire relationship is a farce since it is built upon a lie.

After that, the remaining relationships usually entail people who are not completely sure what they are looking for. There are many facets to BDSM and matching desires up is a crucial component of success. Unfortunately, most are only being exposed to much of this for the first time. Therefore, they have little knowledge about what they want. Instead, they are taking the dangerous path of searching while being involved with another. This is often a recipe for disaster.

Knowing oneself is the most important block for a successful BDSM relationship. Until you are certain what you are looking for, it is impossible to seek out those who can fulfill those desires. Being dominant or submissive is not enough. You need to be clear about what level you are looking to operate on. Do you wish to live 24/7? If so, what kind of relationship is best for you? What are your limits that you refuse to surpass? How will you adapt to fit into what you are seeking? These are all basic questions that I think most overlook.

Ask yourself what is reality. I think you will surprised at what you find as the answer. I encounter so many who believe that role playing is living the life. To me, that is acting. Living in a BDSM relationship means that you are completely involved to the point agreed upon. Simply donning some leather and claiming to be a Master or slave, as an example, does not cut it. Reality means that you are so much more than that if you are to be true to another. Think about this for a while.

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