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We are three adults living in a polyamorous triad family. The content here is intended for an adult audience. If you are not an adult, please leave now.


Being Honest

It is a widely held tenet of the BDSM lifestyle that honesty and transparency are important.  Even foundational.  Necessary for this thing we do to work.

I've often heard it said that this person or that will absolutely not tolerate dishonesty.  Mistakes in judgement -- yes.  Carelessness -- OK.  Plain, downright stupidity -- sure... even that. But not ever, never, no way will we tolerate dishonesty.

It makes sense.  I guess.  But I wonder what we really mean when we say we demand honesty and transparency.  No.  I wonder what I mean by that.  Me.

Because here's the thing.  I have been kinky since I was old enough to masturbate, and that was just not that old.  Actually, I've been kinky since way before I was old enough to realize that being the way I am was not OK with the rest of the world.  I learned to pretend that I wasn't like this at a very young age.  By the time I reached the age of majority, I was a practiced liar.  Mostly, at that point, I lied to myself.  I was pretty naive, but I knew that if I were to live the "happily ever after" dream that was the background to every girlish imagining, I was going to have to play the part of a good girl / nice woman.  No dark fetish tinged longings were allowed in the planned for future of marriage and family and successful career.  So lying became the garment that I wore closest to my skin.

And the guy I married; he lied too.  First he lied when he promised to take care of me and my children.  That wasn't something he was prepared to do; able to do.  He tried to maintain the illusion, but it just wasn't in his makeup.  He was who he was -- good hearted, sweet, loving.  He was no bread winner.  Nor was he strong and protective by his nature.  He might have convinced the 19 year old I was then that he was my knight in shining armor, but he knew it wasn't true.  It was just that the lie was required if he was to have the life he wanted.

Somewhere along the line, I began to itch under the weight of the lie I was living.  I began to "come out" as the freakish, fetish driven, weirdo I really was.  Telling even some of that truth turned out to be no panacea.  Honesty is not always the best policy.  Standing in front of the man I'd married and telling him the truth about what I was and what I wanted created a whole new level of intimate dishonesty.  What, after all, was he to do with that information?  He wasn't any part of that dark world.  He neither understood it nor wanted it.  He only wanted his "comfortable, normal, socially acceptable" life to go on as it had been.  So, he lied again.  To meet my need, my demand, he tried to take on the guise of the dominant partner in my little personal movie.  His dishonesty was understandable, I guess.  My insistence on that dishonesty was unforgivable.

But the sad tale doesn't end there.  Needs denied are wicked things.  They whisper in the darkness.  The hunger is never sated, and the longings never stop.  It is a kind of madness swirling out of control.  Anyone who has ever passed through the attempt to shove a fetish into some kind of back corner, or box, or closet, knows the futility; knows how the squashed down, buried, hidden desires come roaring out, demanding their day in the sun.

I found my way to get that dark drive fulfilled.  I don't think it was conscious or planned.  I only knew that when the opportunity came to get spanked, flogged, and caned by Tom, I was not about to walk the other way.  Married?  Yeah.  I was.  He was. I was willing to toss those vows in the can; willing to move away from my children; willing to quit a good job; willing to sell the family home.  There was nothing I wasn't willing to do or give up in order to get what I wanted.  That simple.  I wanted, and that was all I knew.  Turned out that my commitment to being wife or mother was only sort of that.  Commitment? 'Til death do us part?  In sickness or in health?  For as long as you both shall live?  Once upon a time, long long ago, I said yes to all of that.  I lied.  So.

Probably, in the rush and excitement, I lied to myself.  I told myself that I could give up everything, give up my self, be nothing at all.  I think I tried to believe the fiction that I could lose myself and be fulfilled in that loss.  I'm sure that I wasn't honest with Tom.  I let him believe that I was that "perfectly" submissive who needed only him, and really, only as much of him as he was willing to give.  I let him believe that I could just join the stable of butts and it would all be fine with me.  "Whatever you want, whenever you want."  That is what I told him; what I told myself.

As it turned out, there was no way to talk myself into that story either.  I did try.  But we are who we are.  No matter the stories we tell ourselves.

I don't know the lies others tell.  Maybe, some never do.  Tell lies.  Maybe some are as open and honest and transparent as I've read for all these years.  Maybe there are those who do not carry around dark secrets and shameful hidden failings.  That must be so, because, to demand that level of truthfulness from another person, you would have to live up to that standard yourself.  Wouldn't you?  Wouldn't I?


  1. It's rare to find someone who doesn't lie. There are such, I believe, but people only feel secure enough if they are willing to accept whatever life brings to them without any protesting, silent or verbal.

    Also, there is lying without fear attached, and lying for fear of the consequence of telling the truth. I think these are morally different.

    There's another point, too, Sue: life involves change. We can never validly promise to be or do something in the future. Attempts to get people to do this are simply attempts at controlling them. You do not know what your feelings and desires are going to be at any time in the future. They come and go unbidden. You are at the mercy of your body's make-up and processes - genes, hormones.

  2. So, Malcolm, how does it work? If we are to accept without any protesting, AND are, simultaneously, at the mercy of a corporal body "self," how do we ever know who/what is real or true?


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