Fiction Versus Real Life

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I was recently asked: How do you think the roles of sub and dom are portrayed in “50 Shades” differ from real world experience?

I answered:
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As much as any romance novel differs from real life. In real life, well toned, soulful, piano-playing, helicopter-flying, corporation-mogul billionaire 20-somethings actually don’t pick up and stalk working class virgins in between solving world hunger and being stalked by delusional ex-lovers. In the real world, therapists don’t support someone with mommy issues beating on women who look like mommy in order to help the healing. Etcetera. So, the DS aspects in 50 Shades are fucked up? Sure, just like *everything else.* It’s fiction, and wish fulfillment, Twilight fan-fic wish fulfillment at that.

But here’s the thing – in real life, people fuck up in DS *all the time.* They have bad boundaries, they miscommunicate, they mistake jealousy for passion, invasion of privacy for caring, playtime for relationship discussions. They spend hours discussing which toys to use and what things to DO and don’t bother with half the effort to discuss things like emotional needs and limits, or silly, mundane things like how to deal with friends and family, in and out of the scene.

And we do this without even needing fictional bad examples to base behavior on. So, I don’t blame 50 Shades for people being douchebags. I blame people for not being present, not paying attention, not treating each other like humans, not being reasonable, open minded, generous and thoughtful. No romance novel is a good resource for relationships. Anyone who uses fiction as a basis for how to behave is displaying a level of cognition they really should have grown out of shortly after they stopped tying a towel around their neck and jumping off the living room couch as SuperKid.

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