A Good Start

The first meeting of the Anarchist BDSM group went well. Really well.

In fact, it was pretty much exactly what I was hoping it would be. About thirteen people showed up, only four of whom I knew, and half dozen more contacted me wanting to come to the next meeting. I started the meeting, and semi-facilitated it, but for the most part everyone else just kept things moving along on their own. The experience levels within the group varied widely: there were people who seemed to have virtually no experience with BDSM, and then there were two pro-doms. Most everyone expressed a general aversion to the larger BDSM scene, though we didn’t talk about it much beyond an agreement that we wanted a different sort of space for ourselves.

It looks like we’ll probably start out with a mostly discussion-based group, and then incorporate skillshare components when group members are interested/comfortable/able to do so. What was most exciting to me was the idea that while we’d be meeting once a month as a group, we could easily meet in smaller groups at other times if there were particular things that came up in discussion that only a few people were interested in — like reading a piece of theory together, or having an evening of rope bondage practice at someone’s house.

We also agreed not to get into politics too much in the group, because even though we all identify as anarchists, that label has very different meanings for different people — and we really don’t want the group to degenerate into a game of “you’re not a real anarchist because…” I would personally like to have a conversation about how to deal with anti-BDSM sentiment coming from other anarchists (though I know not everyone in the group is into that idea), and in constructing defenses of BDSM from an anarchist perspective, but I definitely am wary about getting into that sort of thing in a big group. I’d love to talk more theory with people, but am now thinking that I might just find a few other geeks in the group and meet separately for that sort of stuff.

For now, it looks like we’re going to just decide the topic of the next meeting at the end of every meeting. October’s theme is a little vague still, and open for interpretation: negotiation. (This could be as simple as “how to negotiate a scene with someone you’ve never met before,” or be more along the lines of “how does the sort of negotiating we do in BDSM relate to our communications and relationships with other people in a non-kink way?” Or something else entirely.)

The meeting in October is on Thursday, the 30th, from 7-9 pm. Location TBA (it will be either in Oakland or Berkeley, at a wheelchair-accessible venue this time).

We’re still looking for a name for the group, by the way. Let me know if you have any ideas…

3 comments so far

  1. carrie on

    name: anarkinks, of course. (ha-ha)

  2. Meer on

    “Judean People’s Front? We’re the People’s Front of Judea!”

    Anarchist BDSM seems fine. S’no reason to re-brand… (*snickers*)

  3. d on

    Awesome. Congratulations on putting that together and getting people out to it!

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