BDSM and The Disabled
Written By Firerunner June 2008
My name is firerunner and I have MS (multiple sclerosis).
Eight years ago I was in university finishing up my degree, working, single mom, actively involved in our local scene and actively searching for a life long partner. I woke up one morning sick and it progressively got worse. Within a year I heard those dreaded words.
"You have MS, its a chronic disease and you will eventually become disabled."
I thought my life was over. Thoughts of wheelchairs and medicine ran rampant. I assumed I was going to grow old alone, no one would want a disabled slave and this was verified by the so called Dominant that I was dating at the time, when informed I was chronically ill He stated "I'm sorry I can't deal with this." to which I replied. "I'm sorry I cant deal with intolerant people but at least I will try." And it was at that point that I thought, no way am I giving up.
Eight years later I am happily married and a full time slave to my owner. Whom I serve with all my heart.
Many types of disabilities exist such as physical, sensory, cognitive, psychiatric, and health-related. You have heard the saying "no two snow flakes are alike" well that saying holds true for the disabled. Each one is unique in their disability and in how they deal with it. But in a BDSM lifestyle I believe regardless of which snowflake you ride that a lifestyle relationship can work. As with any relationship and any disability there will be hurdles to climb. Its how you choose to climb it that will make all the difference. I hope these tips that I have learned through my travels and in my life will make your journey in search of a lifestyle relationship some what easier.
Communicate - One of the first things consistently talked about in the BDSM circle is communication and this is even more important if you suffer from a disability. That disability is not you, but it is part of you and you need to relay that to your potential partner. Either they will accept it, learn about it, and acknowledge it or as in my case "can't deal with it." If they choose the latter then it is their loss, not yours, it is their problem, not yours. Don't waste your time with excuses and promises that you can't keep. Move on, the right one is out there. I weeded through allot of wanna be's before finding Master. Don't give up and don't let your disability ruin your life. You are in control.
Educate - Whenever I met a potential partner, after introductions where complete, the first thing out of my mouth was " I have MS, I am disabled." I laid the responsibility at their feet, it became their choice to either take it and run or turn their backs on it. If they decide to take it then I directed them to all the information available about my disease. Knowledge is power, power is control. If they were serious then they would learn all they can about my disease and my future. To this day Master still reads everything available on MS from potential stem cell cures, to treating the disease with hormones, to learning how to inject my meds.
Limits - Many of us like to think of ourselves as "no limits." Mentally I am, mentally I would give up my heart and soul for Master. Mentally I would kneel at His feet for hours. Mentally I have no limits. Physically, is another story. I have limits. My body has limits. My disability has limits and no matter what I say and what we think and what we do, my body has restrictions. Regardless of what snowflake you're riding, regardless of a physical or psychiatric or any of the other numerous forms of disabilities, you have limits due to your disability. This is not a reflection of your slavery or how you Master, its a reflection of your disability and any potential partner will acknowledge those limits and work around them without making your feel inferior as a slave or Master. Do not make promises, do not make false hope, if you cannot do it, then say openly, honestly, that is is beyond your control.
Compromise - Yes Compromise. A word not often heard in the BDSM world. Master/Dom are in control at all times and this theory may work when health issues do not arise. But when you add in the disability then the Master/Dom being in control no longer holds true. For when/if your illness rears its ugly head, then control has passed from the Dominant to the disease. It is at this time that a compromise may need to be reached. In my case, my legs are weak sore from spasms on a regular basis. Its difficult to tie me to a St Andrew's cross for a scene, on my good days I tell Him today is a good day to tie me standing, on a bad day I tell Him that today is not a good day to do this and together we achieve a compatible outcome that has pleased not just Master but also me and the disease.
Honesty - Be honest. At all times be honest. Without honesty your relationship is doomed. If you're having a rough day tell your partner. If you're having a good day, tell your partner. If you're in a scene and your illness decides now is a good time to be noticed, tell your partner. Talk Talk Talk. The more honest you are the more open you are the more you will be able to work around your disease. Last I heard mind reading had not yet been perfected, so talk.
Scening - We all like to scene its part of our lifestyle. But concessions may need to be made. When buying BDSm gear ask about disabilities, if you're in a wheelchair and need a longer flogger handle so that you can sit comfortably and flog your partner then ASK the vendor. If they can't do it then find someone else (or come to us we will!) If you have an idea to make a scene run smoother then ASK the vendor. If you need triple padding on a bench because you have bad knees, then ASK. Its fun to scene and even better with the right equipment. If you have an idea or need a specialty item due to a disability then contact us www.bdsm-gear.com we can help.
Mentality - You are disabled it is not going away. You can either jump on the biggest fastest snowflake and enjoy the ride or you can fall to the ground allowing the disease to win. You can smile, and enjoy the good parts of your life or focus on the bad. How you choose to deal with your illness and your pain and your limits is your responsibility. But how you choose will reflect in your relationship as a slave or Master. Not being able to kneel doesn't make or break a relationship. Not being able to flog your partner won't break your relationship. But your mentality and your attitude...will.
Do not let your disability control you, you control it.
I am glad this year is over