People Are Amazing

The Anarkink party last night went so far beyond what I was hoping it would be. Seriously. It was really diverse, a lot of people were playing (we hadn’t actually advertised it as a play party, so I wasn’t really expecting that), and there were a lot of people interested in what we were doing and in helping to make stuff like this happen more often. A couple of times I saw people mentoring other people who were curious but had little or no experience, which was really cool to see. I overheard a conversation between two people I didn’t know in which one person was explaining the idea of d/s relationships to the other; I saw someone coaching another person through his first attempt at flogging. I saw people making and keeping boundaries. And even though we hadn’t planned for a play party and thus had no defined “monitors” or DMs, I also saw people stepping up to help keep peoples’ scenes safe and, especially, keeping folks from intruding on others’ scenes.

One important lesson for future parties, though: make sure the party flyer specifies no dogs. (Seriously, how did we think that we could advertise a party at the anarchist bookfair and not get at least three crusty punks showing up with their dogs?)

I came really close to playing at the party, but am glad that I didn’t; I’d been up since 7am and was working on just a few hours’ sleep, so it probably would have been a bad idea. The reason I didn’t play, though, was not really exhaustion but inhibition; I’m still just really, really scared of letting myself be publicly seen like that, even among people for whom watching their friends get flogged and fucked is totally normal. Feeling shy about public play makes me feel really self-conscious, like I’m somehow not really a part of things, like I’m being prudish and not “liberated” enough or something. It’s a ridiculous fear, I know; there’s absolutely nothing wrong with not wanting to play in public, and I shouldn’t feel pressured to do so. But I still do…perhaps I just feel if I could let go of my self-consciousness that much it would just sort of be a milestone, a real indicator that I’ve gotten past the inhibitions around sex that I’ve been trying to discard for so many years. I know I shouldn’t feel ashamed for the fact that I’m still dealing with those inhibitions, though. I guess that’s the first step…

2 comments so far

  1. Gabe on

    Public play has been a big step from Elizabeth and me in some contexts. We’ve been attending kink parties together for some months, and enjoying them, but never actually playing before this weekend. On the other hand, on our second visit to our swing club we made use of the dungeon. I’m not completely sure what the difference was, but there’s a lot at play going into public play.

  2. Mottled on

    Congrats! Putting together a successful play party is quite the accomplishment:)

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