Madison – Notes from Labels – Fri, Dec 14th

MADISON, Wisc. – Thank you to everyone for coming out to the Madison discussion on “Labels” on Friday, Dec 14th!

We had an amazing discussion and most of it was personal stories that people share. Those stories are really what makes the meetings worth coming to along with the laughter and camaraderie and baked goods!

It was kind of hard to take notes. Lots of hand “talking”, i.e. scuba diver. LOL! I will not recount the personal stories here. If I missed some key points of the discussion or you want to add some additional thoughts, please feel free to do so as well.

Here is the link to SWIPE-Waukesha’s notes on Labels

How did you choose your label?

  • Went thru a thought process about “owning your shit”.
  • FetLife gave only a few choices (drop down).
  • Based on what message my label says to others.

Labels are:

  • For yourself.
  • For others to identify you.
  • Mental shorthand.
  • A starting point for conversations to learn about a person.
  • Convenient; however, they can put you in a box and others in a box.

Labels can:

  • Help you process information fast.
  • Be a personal definition.
  • Be different depending on the parts of the state or country.
  • Have certain meanings depending on your environment (private house party or public dungeon).
  • Affect your play experiences. People will treat you a certain way based on your label.
  • Lead to stereotyping.
  • Be difficult to learn in books as they can go out of date.
  • Change meanings. For example, “queer” in the 1970’s meant gay male.

Beliefs are rigid. Ideas are flexible/fluid.

We are not an island. We live in a community. When groups have an accepted definition to a label, it becomes the social currency of that group.

Don’t let labels control you or not allow you to do something you want to do.

Our next Madison meeting is January 11th at 7:30pm – Risk Management – How do you keep yourself and your relationship safe? How do you keep yourself or your partner or your potential partner safe from trolls or others who may harm them? What do you do when boundaries are crossed? What do you do to keep your community safe?

Our next Waukesha meeting is January 27th at 6:30pm – Fetishes – What does it mean to you? What has to be there for you to get off (an object, an emotion, etc.)? Are you more into the “thing” than the person? Do you connect to the person with the “thing”? Are you, you or your fetish list?

Chicago Den