I had a quiet weekend at home this past weekend. I got some things done I’d been wanting to do, and I was able to relax. The stress of being part of “The Community” was beginning to bring me down.
I’d been undergoing a sort of metamorphosis over the past few months. From wanting to hang around kinky people doing kinky shit to simply wanting to stay more along the fringes- choosing things that mattered to me, not choosing them simply because they were there. I told Septimus a few weeks back, that I wasn’t having any “fun”. But what it really is is that I’m not having fun doing what I’ve been expected to do as part of “The Community”.
I’m not having fun at conventions. The reason I’m not having fun is that because for the most part- it’s the same people, same classes, same instructors over and over again. After you’ve attended a dozen or more of the same convention, shopped at the same vendors, seen the same classes and spent a long weekend spending too much money with too little return, it gets tiresome. After about 15 minutes in any class, I'm ready to head back to my hotel room, snuggle up in bed, and order room service.
I’m not having fun at classes for much of the same reasons. There aren’t enough interesting classes being taught by “no-name” people with unique points of view. The “money” is the Graydancers, Midoris and Lochais. But when you’ve seen them a dozen times, finding a fresh point of view becomes difficult. This isn’t a crack about whether those top echelons should teach at an event or not, but very often I find myself drawn to the classes by someone I haven’t seen before simply because I’m curious about what THEY have to show me. The big names are good for about 15 minutes, but beyond that, for me, it all starts to be the same.
I’m not having fun at munches for obvious reasons, I think. Too many of them are too large, too chaotic, and run too much like a place solely to meet a potential play partner. And too many of them have an element that is uncomfortable for me personally to be around. Too many with boundary issues and with a lack of social skills to match. Fifteen minutes into any munch, I've already explained several times that "no, I'm not A submissive...."and I’m ready to call it a day.
And I’m not having fun at parties. Most are too large for my liking, with few places to play or even to just sit and talk while waiting to play. Getting dressed up, planning a scene, and waiting several hours before finding out that we won’t be able to do it is aggravating. Watching large scenes as a performance is pretty standard nowadays and as hot as they sometimes can be, having someone else’s scene take over an entire room for a couple of hours just makes me wonder why I bothered to go in the first place.
I sit and think about all the weekends I spent at parties and conventions and classes and wondered if any of it made any bit of difference in my life. Did playing in public make my life better? Or did it just give people a false assumption about me? And I wonder if now, that I’ve formed several close relationships with people, most of which have become my own sort of "core friend group" is it really even necessary for me to dress up in fetish wear, worry about photographs being taken, or wonder which person at *this* party is gonna be the dude/tte who will be out of line and unaware of boundaries. I spent so much time floating from one event to another, one party to another, one fifteen minute scene to another, that nothing I was doing seemed more than a blip on my radar. Forgotten about within the time span of a plate of pancakes after the party. When you’re looking forward to sitting with friends AFTER the party at IHOP for pancakes, more than the party itself- something has to give.
I blame the internet for a lot of my apathy. Being part of The Community, it was too easy to get wrapped up in the various shitstorms, personality conflicts, opinions and wankerdoodles. I’d look at profiles of people posting on Fetlife and my first reaction many times was “what a shithead”. I was beginning to view Fetlife as just another place where horny guys came to view all the titty shots- without having to pay for them. And just another place where it started to draw the kinds of people who think that they’re watching some sort of freak show happening right on their computer screen- and the freaks are the girls who are obviously all whores- who would happily fall upon their cock like a woman with her first pair of Louboutins.
Other than to wish a friend a happy birthday, I’ve stayed off Fetlife for the past week or so. I’ve stayed out of groups, I haven’t read threads, I stopped looking at Lopresto’s profile, and I haven’t missed it. If I want to find my friends- I know that they’re seldom there as well. And I know that if something is pretty funny- they’ll let me know about it. I don’t have to be on Fetlife to keep in touch with my friends. Friends have my email address and phone number.
I realized that I don’t really miss knowing what a particular friend did at the party I didn’t go to. I don’t miss knowing which munch had problems, or which person caused the problem. I also don’t miss having to watch spider pictures appear on my wall from jackasses who think they’re pretty funny.
So what does all this mean? Damned if I really know. Right now I’m on a low point. I’ve removed the things that I don’t find fulfilling from my life. I’ve worked on making the few remaining things more important. I’m working on developing my closest friendships and sadly letting the others slide away to where they probably belonged in the first place. I’m working on things that make me happy, while removing the things that brought stress and anxiety to my life. I’ve decreased my online presence to the few places where I can actually have a conversation with my kinky pals about things other than kink, and I’ve recommitted myself to saying no to things that I’d ordinarily do just because they were there.
I figured out that being kinky was a lot of hard work but it was also a model that kept increasing my expectations about what being kinky was. I want to get back to where I was before. I liked it there and it was comfortable for me. Having a smaller view of the wide-kinky world, taking what worked for me and leaving the rest to others is just right for me.
I’m done with having my life lived in fifteen minute slices.