Abuse of power comes as a terrible surprise

For the fourth week in a row, a prominent member of the rope community has been outed for repeat consent incidents. In one case these were sexual violations in private. In another, negligence in private. In a third, abuse of a partner in private. In a fourth—well we’ll see why the fuck he was doing what he was doing in classes. (And yes, these are all men.) Three of the four are—or rather were, in the first case—teachers with whom I have taken classes. You know I love my rope classes. I’ve been to six rope cons, two of Graydancer’s GRUEs, and countless local classes and intensives. Right now I feel sick, not just because of the revelations about power abuse by rope tops, but because I had my own experience of a nonconsensual incident with a teacher. I thought I put the bad feelings behind me. These included feeling embarrassed for not stopping it, which was made worse because my community may have seen me not stop it. I also lost my respect for him as a teacher, lost the respect he gives me as a [decent and somewhat fun] student, and the identification I feel with him as someone whose philosophy I appreciate deeply. I got over the bad feelings, got back a sense of mutual respect, and came to understand what happened as a serious error in judgment on his part. Partly in response to the recent revelations, I told the teacher that he didn’t ask for permission to suddenly and aggressively take me out of the rope my partner had tied. He apologized for not asking. I told him it’s okay. But is it? The bad feelings I endured when it happened came back after I talked to him. They have receded again, but I am really fucking wary right now.
I know this teacher always asks for permission to touch a student because I hear him ask when he circulates in the class. Why was I the person who wasn’t asked for permission? Was it because he believed I wouldn’t object? One of the things we bottoms struggle with is being dubbed “unsafe” when we don’t communicate about things going wrong. (Apparently now we need to be prepared to safeword in class as well as scene.) One of the things I struggle with as a new top is the fear that I am going to fuck things up. I have been talking a lot with my regular bottom to ensure that our negotiations are more thorough. In addition, I have asked him to tell me if he feels retroactively creeped out by something that he was okay with during the scene. (I was okay when the teacher took me out of the rope. It was pleasantly physically and psychologically challenging and a little hot. The next day I wasn’t okay.) I also told my regular top that it is possible that I too may experience delayed effects, or effects that come and go, and she needs to be prepared for that. One of the things I’m cherishing right now is the trust I have with both of them.

If you are a member, you can find good FetLife writings on and for bottom safety in all senses at Rope Bottoming Resources. If you need a model for dealing with a consent incident or need to prep yourself and other community members in case one occurs, check out Consent Rocks.

_CD_ Raku Boots Black – Maitreya Lara (at that Punk thing)
(first pic) Moon. Hair. // Devour (gg)
(second pic) old Ayashi gg
Mossu – Temptress.Choker – Black – Maitreya
Tentacio—red ribbon kimono black & red (with panties)
Tentacio—Rune spell
Violent Seduction – Ume Hime Tanto (Red) (sword)


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