Can you believe that someone in this era is not on FetLife? What is wrong with some people? Do they not realize that FetLife is the basis for the entire BDSM community? Certainly in 2016, someone who is not on FetLife is hiding something.
Do these questions seem unreasonable to you? If you say no, then you are in exactly the mindset that I am going to describe. Unfortunately, it is fairly common for people to believe this.
I think it important to note that I entered this way of life before there was the tremendous online crowd. In the late 1990s, the Internet was no where near as big as it is today. The community was still basically private parties advertised on the back page of local rags. At that time, there were very few pretenders because of the fact that people effectively had to be sponsored in. If one did not get an invite from someone already involved, it was not likely forthcoming. People who were there were real and upstanding. There was little uncertainty if one said he was a master that he was. The same was true for slaves. Everyone was able to interact freely and openly since there were not the game players.
The Internet changed all this. Most of you know that I feel the technology is a double-edged sword. On one hand, it enables us to spread the proper message easier and give many more people access that would not have acquired it via word of mouth. We are also able to interact with people outside our geographic area. Of course, these two benefits are offset by the fact that many spread dis-information and the pretenders are legendary. Today, anyone with a keyboard can become whatever he or she wants to be. It is easy online to create a profile. Living up to that is a different matter though. And this is where the disconnect comes from.
That said, I must say I am not personally on FetLife. I do have a profile for marketing purposes but as far as my personal interactions go, I do not use FetLife. Yes, I am one of those people who are not on FetLife, what does that tell you? Am I suddenly a bad person or less of a dominant because of it? Is my character now in question because I am hiding something? Is there something wrong with me?
The reason I post these questions is because I have basically had people take that approach with me. People are baffled at the idea that I could be real yet not have a Fet profile where others can view me. Seriously, how is anyone going to know who I own or what I am involved in if I am not actively on there? How can another one check out my slave if he wants to play with her and get a hold of me? These are questions that I was asked over the years.
So what am I hiding? The answer to that question is, my life. It really is that simple. I am not one who is going to advertise my entire personal life out there for anyone to read. To start, I do not need the validation of others to sustain me. In fact, part of my freedom during my growth process is getting to the point of not caring what others think, especially anonymous people online. It matters none to me. I do not set out to impress anyone with my profile and show that I am an expert in the things I post. This blog started on the premise that I saw a lot of dis-information out there about this way of life and sought to forward ideas as I see them about this way of life. Many have embraced what I write while others have not. Either way, I write what moves me and what I see. If it helps some out, then my task is complete.
Another problem is that it is easy to create an online persona. People try to judge how "real" someone is based upon what is written online. Certainly, there is a validity to this idea if one posts a ton of information and ideas. Over time, you can read what a person thinks and how he/she behaves which can give true insight into the individual. However, we also must bear in mind that it is rather simple to parrot what else is written online and make it our own. This is why so many get disappointed when dealing with someone. I can act like an expert at rope play by citing all the ideas about it yet the reality of my skill is different if I cannot tie a knot.
This idea moves to such an extreme level that many will not interact with someone who does not have a FetLife profile. I have heard people actually say this. I remember one instance where I asked one if she only dealt with people in her "vanilla" life only if they were on Facebook. I mean, can you really trust someone to interact with who does not have a Facebook page (By the way, I do not have a personal Facebook page either)? With over 1 billion people on Facebook, anyone who is anyone has a Facebook page. Certainly, my logic has to hold true.
Too many believe that BDSM is about community. They seem to think that who one interacts with, plays with, and what parties are attended is what BDSM is about. I completely applaud the interaction and seeking of others who are in this way of life. However, play is not what this is about. Owning one is far beyond the whips and chains. Those who believe BDSM, especially M/s is all about play, they are missing the entire premise of this way of life. Power exchange extends to all areas of life and the responsibility that goes along with that is great. Beating someone's ass is the easy part. Running her life is a bit more difficult and success in this starts with one being able to run his own life. Sadly, few see this aspect of things.
Another situation that arises with the "community" people is that egos tend to take over. There are many wonderful people who acquire a reputation for a particular skill or experiences that are totally warranted. Many of these people are deserving of the accolades while also having the proper mindset about them. However, there are those who are driven by their "place" in this way of life. Many feel that their reputation is most important and live based upon what others think. The accolades they receive go to their heads and, suddenly, they believe they are better than everyone else. A true dominant maintains a degree of humility realizing that he has few answers in compared to all that is out there with BDSM. His experiences are well earned and meant to be shared with others. Wisdom is gained by going through situations while being passed on in an effort to help others. I am sorry but being Master Big Swinging Dick with his two young, pretty slaves walking around the conference in a collar and posing for all others to see is rather unimpressive to me. To me it takes much greater strength to be humble as opposed to being driven by ego. The later conveys insecurity and weakness. Again, if you live according to what others think, then you are enslaved by them. BDSM is about freedom yet so many miss this fundamental point.
Now that I bashed things, I will state that I believe a great deal of the info posted on FetLife is wonderful. People share their experiences and offer insight to others. Certainly, having friends on there and interacting with those on a regular basis is healthy. At times, there are issues where one cannot turn to family or vanilla friends and must interact with a lifestyle person. These are all benefits of a site like that. However, let us not over exaggerate the importance of being on a site like that. I will state honestly that I have viewed hundred of thousands of profiles online over the years. If I desired, I could spend 6 months and build a Fet profile that would make me a superstar. I have enough experience that I could dazzle many with what I could write that and really be on the upper rungs in terms of impressiveness. Would it all be true? Most likely not; exaggeration would be a minimum if not outright lying. Nevertheless, it would contain things that would make people want to be my friend and interact with me (virtually at least). Of course this brings up the question, what is all this a reflection of?
My point is that I am no less dominant because I do not spend hours on a site like Fet. While I acknowledge it is a wonderful tool, people put far too much emphasis on it. Use it to stay in touch, to learn, to interact, and to assist you in growing. However, realize this about the online world, most of those people who you put a lot of stock in as your "friends", trust me when I tell you they will not be there if things collapse around you. I know someone who encountered a life changing situation with her husband which amounted to him being in close to a vegetable state. The man she loves and was married too instantly died and she is left with a person who is a shell of himself. She realized through her troubles who her true friends were. I bet you are not surprised to learn that most of her "friends" while offering their best wishes, did not even lift a finger for her. She realized who her true friends were.
It is imperative to keep things in context. Simply because someone offers a different approach than you do, that does not mean that something is wrong with that person. I do not have a FetLife profile yet I have a blog that has close to 700 in depth posts on it. I would venture to say I wrote more words online about this way of life than 98% of the people on that site or any other. So once again, is not having an active Fet profile a reflection of me, my knowledge, and how I approach this way of life? Am I less qualified as a dominant simply because I do not frequent a site like that? Some, it seems, think exactly that. If one chooses to advertise many aspects of his/her life to a bunch of strangers online, that is his/her business. For myself, I opt not to do that. My privacy, as much as we can expect in this era, is more valuable to me. Perhaps I am in the minority with this viewpoint.
So, in closing, the next time someone tells you "everyone in this way of life is on Fet", you can say, that is not true. "Everyone" is not, there is one less than that since Dennis is not on there. However, you best be quick about it because I just might set up my super duper profile to wow and woo the masses. I think I will start by listing myself at 6' 5" even though it is off by about 10 inches. And speaking of 10 inches, that is exactly what I am packing inside my jeans (the wonders of close up photography). My slave farm (remember to get pics of farms from online) comes complete with a dungeon (get kink.com still photos) which will satisfy any slave......
Ah so many possibilities.
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