A Marked Difference

by Si gns
Lock and key tattoo

People are evil, mean and insane. They do things to themselves and others that are unconscionable.

People, lie, steal, cheat, rob, kill and rape. They do it for many reasons, none of them excusable.

Here is an example.

In the interest of full disclosure I should say that I am the Dominant in a 24×7 D/s relationship. We own many of the items recovered from the scene in this horrific crime. We do things that many would find objectionable. It is our motivation for doing these things that sets us apart from the people in that story.

We practice BDSM because it comes from a place of love and trust for us. We explore the edges of our sexuality in a way that involves our full consent and causes no harm. I know you will look at the last sentence and scoff… Harm? I have seen the pictures and read the words, you do cause harm. To a casual observer that might look to be the truth. But it is far from it. To me harm means to damage, break, and hurt someone in a way that can not be repaired whether that is emotionally or physically. I would be devastated if I thought I had ever done that to the woman I love.

Let me be clear about BDSM. It is not the easy path. It is fraught with danger and risk. If you are not careful it can cause other people harm. This is not something that is for everyone. But we have each consented over and over that this is a path that we wish to explore. That we are aware of the risks and take all precautions to keep us both from harm. We live our lives fairly openly so that the world around us can see that our relationship is happy and healthy. We know many people in similar relationships who do the same. But just like the world at large there are predators. True predators, not the kind you see in fiction put there to give you the thrill of a bit of safe danger. People who I would not trust, as my wife says, “with a feather duster”. These people will take advantage of any situation to their own ends. They truly do not care about anyone’s needs but their own. We warn each other about these people. But there are no more of these people in the BDSM community than there are in the wide world. To claim that because the world is more aware of BDSM and therefore this evil has a home and a refuge is naive.

Some of you are probably thinking “Hey, if this stuff is dangerous, why do you do it?”You might as well ask the same of a Skydiver, or Free Climber or Astronaut (none of which my wife will let me do). Life is dangerous, you choose what risks to take and which risks to avoid. We have decided to take this journey together, as safely as we can while we explore what turns us on. We do it with our eyes open, with our love and our communication fully engaged. I hope you do the same even if BDSM is not your thing.
I do not claim any of the following things:

BDSM is safe

BDSM will save your marriage/sex life

BDSM will fix your depression/sanity

BDSM will make you happy/rich/better looking

BDSM will make you popular

What I do claim:

It works for us and we would do it even if the interwebs and FsoG never existed.

The story you read above is not about BDSM it is about a psychopath who found a vulnerable woman. That does not make us like them.

Lock and key tattoo

*This is the 1st post in the A – Z blogging Challenge


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Malin James March 31, 2015 - 4:41 pm

I wasn’t aware of the Dwyer case and I feel sick after reading the details of it. Sick and very angry. Dwyer is the worst kind of predator, and the fact that this crime played out under the guise of BDSM is distressing, though only slightly less distressing than what O’Hara experienced in that relationship. I’m grateful that you provided a calm, clear-headed, positive response to it. It’s certainly more than I could do at the moment.

Remittance Girl March 31, 2015 - 4:47 pm

“there are no more of these people in the BDSM community than there are in the wide world”

No, in fact, statistically, there are far more in the vanilla world. The Dwyers of this world will find any convenient cloak for their criminality and their murderousness. Could have just as easily been the Bible. It has been for many.

fridayam March 31, 2015 - 8:01 pm

You put your case calmly and eloquesntly. The issue, as always, is one of consent, which is curiously the subject of my latest poem. I hope you both are well and send much love xx

Marie Rebelle March 31, 2015 - 8:42 pm

I also only learned about the Dwyer case and it totally sickened me.
“The story you read above is not about BDSM it is about a psychopath who found a vulnerable woman. That does not make us like them.” – I totally agree. He’s nothing but a psychopath.

We are one of those BDSM couples you know and over here safety and good health is our number 1 priority. Thanks for putting this out there…

Rebel xox

Cammies on the Floor March 31, 2015 - 9:49 pm

Love when we get your perspective as well. Thank you for being open and model of what healthy and happy looks like, both of you!

Velvet Rose March 31, 2015 - 11:12 pm

Calm, eloquent and stating clearly that the pursuit of a BDSM lifestyle does not mean we are also raging nutcases.

I feel very saddened that this poor woman came across this lunatic and I hope that he rots in his jail cell and is never allowed out again, he does not deserve freedom (personally I feel this is an instance where the death sentence has a place).

May she now rest in peace and I hope her family can move forward, as best they can, with justice served.

Velvet x

Flip April 1, 2015 - 8:42 am

I think it;s so important for people to understand the difference between consensual BDSM, and a man who chose to hide behind the umbrella term in order to justify how he treated his victim.

I do wish those for whom BDSM isn’t their thing can be open minded enough to see that.

Really looking forward to reading your posts throughout April

Flip xx

anna (herding cats & burning soup) April 2, 2015 - 5:05 am

Very nicely put. It’s awful when people can’t see the differences or choose to not see them and that evil can pop in anywhere and use any excuse to hide behind.

Anna @ herding cats & burning soup

Oleander Plume April 2, 2015 - 3:15 pm

Powerful words. I agree with you, that man was a single psychopath, and not a reflection couples who practice BDSM. BTW, your tattoos made my heart melt!

KaziG April 2, 2015 - 9:15 pm

Didn’t know about the Dwyer case 🙁
I remember when my sister entered lifestyle many years ago and I just couldn’t understand what she got out of it. Worse, I was afraid of the effect on her two little girls.
I so get it now… and I wouldn’t go back to vanilla for the life of me!

~Kazi xxx

Stella April 3, 2015 - 1:27 am

There is a marked difference between what people like Dwyer do and what men like you do. Consent can never be stressed enough. Thank you for sharing your voice today.


Prompt #149: Goals - Wicked Wednesday October 12, 2018 - 10:13 pm

[…] A Marked Difference by DomSigns  Just last week I learned about a horrific murder case in Ireland, where a man was convicted for killing a woman with whom he had a BDSM relationship. DomSigns wrote a post in reaction to that, about conscious choices, about safety, about choosing to explore boundaries. Anyone interested in BDSM, eve if only wanting to know more about it and not wanting to practice it, should read this! […]


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