My intention for the month of October was to supply the reader with a vizion of what intimate partner violence looks like in a BDSM relationship. I am going to fail. As I’ve designed in my head this series, I was forced to admit somethings about my intentions.
I am not “qualified” to wrestle this bear. While a good friend who also happens to be a licensed and practicing psychologist pointed out there are some things that don’t require qualifications, I say still I am not qualified.
I am a survivor. I have a platform. I have some educational training. I have some practical experience from my time in social work and with the police department.
All that means is the advice I give matters to me, to my integrity, and until I complete my education in this area, I refuse to call myself qualified.
When I look at this issue specifically from the context of BDSM and the underlying ‘why’ of both predator and prey I understand that to toss out ‘unqualified’ advice and not being able to support it is much more dangerous than being silent.
Silence is not a personality trait of mine though so it leaves me in a conundrum; to proceed recklessly or be responsible.
I opt for responsibility.
It does not mean I abandon my work, it means I bring in ‘qualified’ help to address the issue.
I can tell you to story of a woman who has a medical condition that causes her pain when she eats spicy food. I can tell you that her partner, who is aware of this issue, uses that against her. I can tell you that is abuse. I can also tell you that she will go to her grave denying she is abused.
I can tell you the story of a woman who relies solely on her partner for financial support. I can tell you that the partner uses that against her. The partner isolates her and uses the purse strings to keep her isolated. That isolation might not be abuse, but then again…..it just might.
I can tell you hundreds of stories and point out behaviors that even in this alternative lifestyle should cause alarm. I will tell you that the people involved all believe they are giving consent. I will also tell you that while consent is the key word in defining abuse, consent is not always given freely.
Those of us who are conditioned to accept abuse can give consent, yet we also are not unlike the child who says yes because the consequence to the no is too great for them.
I will meet people along the way who tell me I am enabling a victim mentality and a victim society. My response there is my examples are what they are, society is what it is, and if we are to have hope of the next generations doing better we have to first accept that victims exist and stop blaming them for their own victimization.
That is a hard pill to swallow and I am not ‘qualified’ to make you choke on it.
I wish that I could.
I am qualified though to stand and speak when others will not. Speaking costs nothing, speaking at times inspires others to join you.
I am qualified to share scenarios and raise awareness. Awareness is the first step to change.
I am foolish enough to think that I can change the world. I am wise enough to know though that change is a process and along the way it cannot be a one woman show.
As a part of the Vizionz expansion I am going to do something that I’ve never done. I am going to collaborate. Joining me shortly is a friend and future colleague who is ‘qualified’ because they have both the education and the real life experience.
Vizionz’s new contributor will be here in a limited fashion to extend their expertise to the issues I am not ‘qualified’ to handle in the responsible manner I think should happen. The contributor will be compensated for their work, that is after all what you do when you bring in a professional.
Their compensation is for their time and expertise, NOT to buy their opinion. As you get to know them as you know me….you will understand their integrity matters more than decimal points.
I will also pimp their products, workshops, and their consulting services. They are not paying for that advertisement, it comes because I believe in them.
In a few days I will make the grand announcement. In the meantime stay tuned. And if you have a free moment head on over to the Black Weblog Awards and cast a vote to get me out of the semi finals and onto the final ballot. We are about to do big things here at Vizionz the elevated platform and exposure means our message gets to more people.