HELP...I am student looking for information

Discussion in 'General BDSM discussions' started by 123comeseeme, Apr 23, 2012.

  1. 123comeseeme

    123comeseeme New Member

    Hello BDSM community! I need your help. I am doing a project about BDSM (Bondage, Discipline, Sadism, Masochism) for my Youth Cultures class. For my fieldwork portion I am conducting a survey/interview on the perception of the subculture. With that being said, I would like if you took five minutes to answer the following questions. Please respond, I am very interested on learning about the subculture.

    1. At what age did you discover BDSM?
    2. Is BDSM a lifestyle or an activity?
    3. What is your sexual orientation?
    4. What is your BDSM orientation?
    5. At what age did you start to experiment with sexual activities?
    6. Do you think that in later years you will have more or less BDSM activity?
    7. Do you feel that BDSM is anti-social?
    8. What is the most common BDSM activity that you do?
    9. Were you sexually or physically abused in your childhood?
    10. Do you think BDSM is dangerous?
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  2. sebastian

    sebastian Active Member

    1) Consciously as BDSM, 42. Without realizing it was BDSM, my 20s.
    2) Both.
    3) Gay--Kinsey 6
    4) 90% dominant
    5) This question is so broad as to be almost meaningless. I started masturbating when I was 13.
    6) More.
    7) No. It's a deeply bonding activity.
    8) Verbal abuse and pain play.
    9) No, although my dad spanked me a good deal (I don't eroticize spanking or connect it to what my father did)
    10) It can be, especially if the dom is inexperienced and hasn't bothered to read up on safety tips. But BDSM can easily be done very safely. So, it's dangerous the way driving a car is dangerous.
  3. Smallest

    Smallest Moderator

    1. When I first learned about it, early teens. First practiced it in my later teen years, with my then-boyfriend-now-Master.
    2. It depends on the relationship. In my case, lifestyle.
    3. Straight
    4. Submissive
    5. Agree with Sebby's point. This isn't a well-worded question.
    6. More, because I'll have more contact with Sir.
    7. No? How could it be? If anything, BDSM encourages one to be social.
    8. Other than general dominance from my master- humiliation, impact play, that sort.
    9. No, and this is an irrelevant question.
    10. No. Some activities associated with BDSM can be, if done by someone who doesn't understand the risks taken and precautions needed, but BDSM as a whole is not. I agree with Sebastian, it's like asking if driving is.
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2012
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  4. Knots

    Knots Member

    1. I "discovered" in an academic way when I was about 11. I took a more active interest (academically) at 14, and then begin to indulge in it at 17/18.
    2. Lifestyle
    3. Describe myself as asexual usually.
    4. Dominant.
    5. 17
    6. More
    7. No, if anything pro-social.
    8. Humiliation and pain play
    9. No, and I don't like the association between BDSM and childhood abuse.
    10. To concur with the previous two posters, dangerous in the same way driving a car can be.
  5. Aibo

    Aibo Member

    1. As soon the discoverer steps forward I let you be the first to know.
    2. A form of extreme sport.
    3. Trisexual, though some weekends I might go quadrasexual.
    4. Ganking and cruelly mushing persons who send in clueless questionnaires.
    5. At about the same time I noted that my pee glow in the dark.
    6. Do furries have enough fluff?
    7. Doesn't it show that I am quite antagonistic already?
    8. I only do uncommon stuff.
    9. Not only that! My folks tortured the manual gearbox on the car as well. With extreme cruelty.
    10. Yes! When put in that order those four letters creates a very dangerous combination.

    ...and it should be rather obvious that I do consider the questions implicating that most are some kind of 'anti-social' freaks, that we're unsafe making this 'dangerous', and that we're victims of abuse to be an insult.
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  6. sebastian

    sebastian Active Member

    The question about abuse is, in my opinion, a reasonable one. If you dig through the threads on this site, you'll find a lot of subs admitting that they were abused as children. So it's not unreasonable to speculate about whether there might be some connection there. While the questions here may not be the best-formulated poll questions, the person asking is a student in a class, and is in the process of learning how to ask the right questions. So let's not beat him up--just help him to recognize the limits inherent in the way he's asking the questions.
  7. Smallest

    Smallest Moderator

    I know that many subs or doms were abused, but there's nothing showing it's any more common than with a vanilla person. If he is asking a similar set of questions geared toward people identifying as vanilla (or some other form of control group), I'll be less bothered. Although asking a random forum to do a survey isn't that scientific anyway.

    When/if he replies, perhaps his viewpoint on why some of these questions are included will become more clear.
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  8. Aibo

    Aibo Member

    Sorry Sebastian in my opinion it is not reasonable in any what whatsoever.
    Sure I've seen claims of abuse in posts here as well on Fetilife.

    Judging a situation from posts on the internet cannot be used as any statistical material since any person who have been a victim of such are more inclined to post if something such is asked. And I have gotten more and more inclined to think it is a claim that is used as some sort of mental crutch for certain people who are into kink. (Not not all but some as said.)

    Not that it is completely unheard of. With first hand information in the local BDSM scene, and people I know fairly well we got one only. And that is a group of about 200 people.

    (Was not able to find statistics for my country rightoff but for USA: 1 in every 58 children in the United States, were abused in 2006.)

    Lets use that figure instead and make a claim that fewer who comes out with a BDSM inclination later in life, have been the victim of abuse at some point.

    And yes you're correct smallest, as mentioned above, any survey statistic in a forum will be completely lopsided since only some will reply.

    Lastly, that question imply that BDSM couples invariable are child molesters.
    I am the offspring of a BDSM couple myself, my parents were into this also.
    Asking such a question suggest that my parents were less moral and loving parents than anyone else would have been. They were in fact very loving and really tried to guide me into a vanilla life as a normal citizen keeping their inclination hidden as long as possible.
    The same go for my own daughter, I gave my best for her up until the day I split with my ex.
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2012
  9. Smallest

    Smallest Moderator

    Aibo, I'm not exactly sure where parents being involved in BDSM came to this. Either way, I think we should avoid derailing further.
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  10. Stargazer

    Stargazer Member

    I'm not very good at short messages, but for the sake of data collection, I'll try.

    1. At what age did you discover BDSM?

    As early as six/seven years old, I was using things like sweaters and jumpers to try and tie myself up though I had no idea what any of it meant. It was only as I approached my mid-teens and I began to discover what bits of me really did that I discovered being restrained heightened the senses. This discovery made me investigate further and I discovered the acronym, BDSM.

    2. Is BDSM a lifestyle or an activity?

    Unfortunately, it is a rare activity in this household. I offered my wife full control, was willing to submit, to be restrained, to serve, but it was not what she wanted and therefore I had to let go of any hope it mihgt happen. It is now used as an occasional 'playtime' device.

    3. What is your sexual orientation?


    4. What is your BDSM orientation?

    In the marriage that I have, I would take the submissive role. However, I'm certain that I have it in me to dominate to if I had someone who wanted to be dominated. Therefore, I guess you'd officially class me as a switch as it would depend largely upon who I was with.

    5. At what age did you start to experiment with sexual activities?

    As mentioned in Q1, it was in my mid-teens. I bought a pair of cheapy handcuffs from a joke shop and would put myself in them to masturbate. At seventeen, I acquired some chains and would chain myself to my bed until I could bear it no longer, let one hand loose and then relieve myself. Proper sexual activites with another person began when I was eighteen and we would use the chains and cuffs to intensify things.

    6. Do you think that in later years you will have more or less BDSM activity?

    Sadly, I can only see it decreasing. We're in the process of starting a family and that means that it would be inappropriate to put the child in a position where it might see or hear something. I predict that even the playtime aspect will dry out completely and I will have to go the rest of my life fighting the disapointment of not being allowed to have the restraint that I so depserately crave.

    7. Do you feel that BDSM is anti-social?

    No. I feel that the world is anti-social to BDSM. For some reason, 'normal-folk' consider BDSM people to be perverted, corrupt and whatever else. Whenever some nut job goes beserk and kidnaps or rapes a woman, newspapersd are quick to jump on the fact that he had a fetish for bondage (where applicable). I see it as no different to those who play golf. They spend thousands of pounds on hardware, buy special clothes to do it in and use it as a means of pleasure. Nobody frowns on golfers for being strange. People need to broaden their minds and not be so petty and judgemental.

    8. What is the most common BDSM activity that you do?

    Not that any of it is common in this house anymore but I'm lucky if three or four times a year, it is remembered that I like to be cuffed to the bed during sex.

    Back in the few months when it was at least attempted to step it up to a lifestyle choice, it was regular use of wrist/ankle cuffs connected with chains as means of general restraint, occasional use of a straightjacket, and even more infrequent use of restraint hardpoints screwed into onw bedroom wall in the shape of a St Andrews cross.

    9. Were you sexually or physically abused in your childhood?

    Sexually no. However, I did spend eight years as a punchbag for someone until he finally went too far and ended up with a court injunction against him. From eleven onwards, though the abuse had ended, I found myself with low self esteem and that resulted in me being an ewasy target for bullies in secondary school. In adulthood, I have been prone to severe depression but have significantly improved in recent years.

    10. Do you think BDSM is dangerous?

    I think 21st century health and safety is to blame for a lot of the danger warnings. That's not to say it's all unwarranted. It all comes down to the person who's given control. If they keep a level head and try not to push boundaries, then all is well. If they get kicks out of watching others suffer and have little respect for human life, then there's a chance it will go horribly wrong.

    Hope there's something there you can use.

  11. Kor

    Kor Member

    I know that question can be a sore spot, but consider that by asking it he

    A) obtains independent data to compared to "everyone knows" or "reputable sources say" data (which, unfortunately, isn't always correct)

    B) obtains fairly detailed demographic data to compare to his answers

    With a large enough data set, he might find out that the incidence of abuse (bearing in mind "abuse" is a very slippery term, so the real answer he's getting is "I think I have been abused") might be different between doms, subs, or switches, or that it's different between gay and hetero orientations, or is linked to the age that you became interested in BDSM. Or the data might show there's no meaningful correlation at all.

    The questionnaire may be a bit simplistic, but it's not entirely bad. It's all to easy to frame questions to get the answers you want to hear, even if you're not doing it intentionally. Designing a questionnaire isn't as easy as it looks. In fact, a good example is the Kinsey Reports about human sexual behavior. Originally taken as absolute fact, nowadays it's know the way the questions were presented probably skewed the answers, rendering a huge (and expensively obtained) dataset much less reliable and useful than originally thought.
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  12. 123comeseeme

    123comeseeme New Member


    Hello, this is the student replying back to all the responses that I received. I genuinely appreciate the time you all took to respond to the questions. This gave me a better insight of the subculture. It seems as though I offended some people of the BDSM community (which was not my intention whatsoever). I apologize if some of the questions touched a "nerve". However, I am a student and I am LEARNING about this subculture. Instead of bashing me, I would prefer if you would educate me further on my ignorance of BDSM. In contrast, your opinions are helping me with gaining further knowledge !

    Thank you!

    By the way, I am a female :)
  13. Smallest

    Smallest Moderator

    I don't think anyone means it entirely in a bashing manner. But a little sarcasm, or a small rant about why it bothers can (and apparently have) show what's going right/wrong.

    You're welcome to ask more general or specific questions, and to read through some of the other threads that might enlighten you- perhaps the FAQ.
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  14. Knots

    Knots Member

    I wasn't in any way bashing, and I don't honestly think that was the stance anyone took.

    As Smallest highlighted, you'll find people in the BDSM community who have been abused as children. However, you'll find people in knitting societies who were abused as children, too.

    A better question* may have been "do you have any positive/negative childhood experiences which you relate your fetish(es) to?", as you can have a fetish for anything under the sun (indeed, including the sun) so someone may have a really interesting story about how they acquired a fetish for making their submissives pop balloons**. As this avoids the negative assumption (of BDSM being linked with abuse) and facilitates you exploring how people feel/understand their fetishes more.

    Hope this helps.

    *I have thought this up in 5 minutes, so it may have flaws in it too. Drafting survey questions should actually be a pretty rigorous process.
    **I had a conversation with a friend who does indeed have this fetish.
  15. Kor

    Kor Member

    I like the way that's phrased. It asks a question without trying to bias the answer.

    Downside it, it requires an essay-type response, and while those can be very precise and meaningful, it can be hard to turn them into tabular data.
    To extract maximum value from the responses, you'd have to match them against a matrix of allowable values.

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