This article was originally posted on FearlessPress.com
Often those that participate in kink, BDSM, and alternative lifestyles like to think of themselves as social outlaws, people that live and love on the edge. They view themselves as renegades and outsiders, shirking the rule of mainstream society. And, in some ways, I suppose this is true. In comparison to mainstream culture, kink is still often misunderstood, shunned, and criminalized. However, while there’s still work to be done on improving how kink is represented and accepted in widespread culture, the BDSM communities have managed to create such massive, inclusive, and comfortable spaces for themselves that kink in and of itself hardly seems groundbreaking and intensely edgy anymore. Once one has discovered their local kink community, sites like Fetlife or Alt.com, or BDSM educational events, they can settle in to adapting to a new status quo that simply comes with a somewhat broader set of norms.