Singles Ask

Community Post: BDSM Players Talk About 50 Shades Of Grey

1. Plenty of kinky people enjoyed the books and have awesome things to say.

“I enjoyed the stories for what they were, romance novels. They were easy reading, and at the center of it was a sweet love story. It was nice that there was a bit of kink thrown in, it certainly got the vanillas talking, and it got some of them exploring, and perhaps it softened their judgmental attitudes toward the kinkster crowd just a little.” (From Virginia, US)

2. But many also agreed that the books were not well researched…

“Right now, my biggest issue (and I will admit it’s HUGE) is that it’s painfully obvious the books were not written by somebody within the community, nor who actually did any proper research on the community.” (From California, US)

3. …limits were not properly set…

“Fuzzy limit-setting is among the author’s worst sins in this catalog of how not to do BDSM.” (From California, US)

4. …and consent was not given clearly or fully enough.

“I don’t feel that either party in these books truly know what the giving of consent is …at least it didn’t seem that way to me. Yes Ana may have been instructed or told how to use her safe word but being fresh and new to the world of sex and BDSM she just doesn’t seem to know how/when/should she use it. When that area comes into play the Dom (in this case Christian) does need to help her along a little bit give her encouragement and not disregard her feelings. Everyone’s D/s relationship is different just as no two people are the exact same …but their relationship just feels very wrong to me.” (From Iowa, US)

5. They HATE that Christian was portrayed as mentally ill.

“why oh why do all popular representations of BDSM…have to portray those involved in the lifestyle as having a background of some kind of mental illness or abuse…. people without these kinds of issues like BDSM too” (From Bristol, UK)

6. They also think that Christian wasn’t a responsible Dominant.

“all kinksters, especially Dom’s to inexperienced submissives, must follow RACK (Risk Aware Consensual Kink) which he does not. There are several things he does with Ana without explaining the full risks to her or suggesting that he understands them himself.” (From Hampshire, UK)

7. Actually, they think Christian was actually pretty awful.

“I was re-reading the first book for a discussion about it. After reading it with the intent of dicussing the BDSM aspects of it I found that Christian Grey is a predator. He chose a woman with absolutely no knowledge of the BDSM world or even any real knowledge of relationships in general and then asked her to sign on to a way of life and a culture that she has no understanding of. Worse he didn’t explain it to her. He uses contradictory and confusing language which throws her off balance. He then has mind blowing sex with her which makes her even more unbalanced and vulnerable.” (From Kansas, US)

8. “Regardless, they know that his limits should have been respected as much as Ana’s”

“The no-touching thing especially…I get that he’s fucked up and everything but a person has the right to set their limits and have them respected!” (From Hampshire, UK)

9. To some, Ana wasn’t really submissive.

“Ana was not submissive at all. She was passive-aggressive. She was a bottom during sex, not submissive. She was passive at best.” (From Kansas, US)

10. To others, she was relate-able.

“Despite the annoying as the characters , especially Ana, and the lackluster writing, the book has brought these ideas to the mainstream. Sometimes I was just embarrassed by the things Ana says, emails, thinks. Hopefully, Hollywood will spiff all that up for the movie version. One thing I could relate to is that I like the idea of being a sub but don’t enjoy physical pain which I think Ana was grappling with in book 1.”(From Massachusetts, US)

11. They hope that non-kinky people won’t take the books seriously

“I seriously fear the damage this series may end up doing to those who take it as the be all and end all of kink.” (From Ontario, Canada)

12. BUT, they agree that they books remind seasoned kinksters how to treat those who are new to BDSM…

“Something I think you learn from these books is that newbies don’t always safeword when they need to. The Dom needs to be even more in control of himself and the situation, watching the newbie’s reaction, and doing their best not to bring them to their limit.” (From Kentucky, US)

13. …and how to help them learn…

“I would advise any newbie to seek information from reputable BDSM related books and maybe even to attend a munch with people that are experienced and able to answer questions correctly.” (From Texas, US)

14. …and how to utilize the books, themselves, in the process!

” We started offering 50 Shades Home Parties to help “vanilla” folks safely explore some of the topics from the books…I think it’s important for the community to reach out to these potential kinksters. We probably had similar questions/hesitations/worries when we first started and as the “experienced” kids on the block we have an opportunity here to act as mentors and guides.” (From Texas, US)

15. What do you think of the series?

Read more: http://buzzfeed.com/juniperbug/what-actual-kinky-people-think-about-50-shades-of-f59x

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