Your kink is not my kink and that’s okay. The ethic underlines everything we get up to in this gory world. It’s the principle we throw at our sexual shame. It’s the principle that shatters every judgement we’ve ever faced around our kink, so it’s what we cling to when we share our darkest selves. Like all ethics, it can also morph itself into a set of pearls to clutch when people call our “salaciousness” abuse.
On any given day on Planet Kink, you’ll find someone somewhere flying a YKINMKATOK banner to excuse their despicable treatment of their subs. You know the domme: She’s coerced her six newcomer slaves into a level of submission they’re in no way ready for. We suspect this, and then our fears are confirmed when her house begins to shed subs like a summer coat.
You know the slave: he thought if he didn’t submit to all her demands, she would shut him out or dole out forms of punishment he never agreed to. He had no awareness of the risks he was taking when he crossed the continent to be with her, and now that he’s left, he can’t seem to get in touch with his old values. His self-esteem is lying in shreds on the floor around him, and he doesn’t know how he came to distrust himself so much, but hey, it was kink, so who are we to judge?
The difference between kink and abuse is consent. Coercion is not consent. Ignorance is not consent. Gaslighted yesses are not consent, and none of the dynamics that come from those things qualify for the YKINMKATOK ethic.
That’s when our most treasured principle becomes a justification, and it’s an effective one because it asks us to undermine the ethic we cherish most. In truth, though, my judgement of your coercion is not kink-shaming but abuse-shaming. I’m not going to point fingers at your choice of SSC or RACK or PRICK because every one of those approaches has consent at their core.
Take your risks. Throw all the darkness you have into your scenes. Kink away. I might be a little terrified about what you’re risking, but I will defend your right to play that way anyway. I’m big on CNC, so I’ve got no grounds to judge anyway, but I will not stop shaming your nonconsensual treatment of your kink partners.
In legal terms, coercion is compelling a victim to act against their will via psychological pressure, physical force, substances, or threats. If you’re pressuring your slave to drop their hard limits, it’s not kink but abuse. If you’re threatening to leave unless she conforms, that’s not consent, but coercion. If you’re gaslighting or manipulating your way towards a “yes,” I will judge your “kink” all damned year because it’s not a kink. It does not fall under the YKINMK banner.