Morningstar recently pointed to the phenomenon of major breaks that sometime occur in the context of our BDSM relationships, and asked the pretty direct and essential question (the one we tend, generally, to avoid):
I have to wonder IF this BDSM lifestyle is something that most of the population can maintain for any length of time.
Certainly, our family has gone through a really difficult stretch during which we've questioned just about everything about our lives and our beliefs and our interactions with each other. We've been rocked to our foundations (and there have been those ubiquitous although, thankfully, few nay-sayers among our readership who have cheered our ever wobble). We are still here, still standing, and still together.
Our overtly power-driven BDSM M/s DYNAMIC has, in fact, been largely dormant as we've directed our attentions and energies to the demands of surviving, and healing. The classically, play-based, fun, fantasy oriented, and yes, sexy parts of BDSM have just not been part of our lives for these last months.
We've had a lot of heavy and intense work to do, and serious matters to attend to. We've been engaged with professionals regarding mental health, physical health, relational issues, legal issues, financial issues. We've all had to confront the various bits and pieces of our lives and habits that contributed to and supported our family's addictive breakdown. It has been a challenging time.
I tossed a tablecloth over the toy rack a few weeks back. It was a way to protect myself from having to see them all hanging there on the wall each morning when I first opened my eyes. I covered them up and hid them-- but I could not bring myself to put them away. I have simply not been able to convince myself that we will never be into "that kind" of BDSM play again. Things have, surely, changed. We are not the same as we were. We'll never be the same again. We are and will be different for having traveled this particular path together. That is the fact of having lived this long and experienced what we have.
On the other hand, we remain in some very basic parts of our day to day lives, exactly as we have always been. I still do a whole variety of things for Him, and He still expects them to be done -- not so much in the sense of "requirement" or "demand," but more as a matter of course. It is the way it is. Too, we have, in the last bit of time, begun to flirt with one another and tease a bit about the SM side of our relatedness. That is feeling fragile, tentative, delicate, and exploratory... but it is, nevertheless, there, and I am glad for it.
In the end, I think that the question is really not about BDSM relationships at all. I think it is simply about relationships in general: Is it possible for one fallible and frail human to enter into and maintain any sort of long term viable relationship with another human -- or are we just too volatile and unpredictable to make it work?
I think that we can make life-long relationships that work. Call me naive. Label me a dreamer -- a Pollyanna. I think that we can hang on and hang in and grow and learn and start again -- over and over and over. I believe in the power of love and the strength of a promise, and I will forever assert that we can make it work if we just refuse to quit.
What is the future? I do not know. Cannot know. None of us can. We can only choose to love with our best selves in this moment, for this day. Our BDSM relationships are no better and no worse than any other. All those scary looking whips and paddles do nothing at all to keep life's vagaries away from our doors. We make our relationships last, for the long haul, by being the people we have promised to be -- on the days when love lifts us up soaring AND on the days when we slog through the muck unable to see the sun.