Monday, April 30, 2012

Kaelah's Corner (Apr 2012):
I'm Not Gonna Take It

This is not going to be a sugar-coated post. Diplomatic Kaelah is on holiday today and her brutally honest but protective Klingon half has taken over. I have to say a few words, even if I know that some people won't like them. But I think there is a time when one should stand up for oneself as well. And this is the time. If you are a thin-skinned person or easily offended, consider to stop reading at this point. You have been warned!

In light of recent events, I have to stand up for Ludwig's and my right to disagree with people about certain ideas and not to do everything we are asked to do, without people immediately turning away with a melodramatic "Oh, I see my ideas are not appreciated here! You won't ever hear from me again!" message.

I have had to experience this situation far too often recently. Not just on the blog, but also in private communication. People send us emails with all kinds of ideas and requests, which in itself is absolutely fine. But in some cases when we have to turn them down for not only valid but also well-explained reasons, always accompanied by a polite "Thank you for the idea, but unfortunately, we can't do it. We hope you understand!", Ludwig and I suddenly end up with people telling us how unwelcoming we are and that not giving them what they want is offensive. And sometimes, especially in emails, the reactions are so extreme and so latently threatening that I become really scared and ask myself whether it is a good thing to put myself out there like that.

I am not talking about isolated events here, but about a pattern that seems to have developed in recent weeks. It is quite frustrating for me to try to be as open and as welcoming as possible when it suddenly seems to strike back in such a negative way. Being open and welcoming apparently gives some people the idea that they have the right to demand anything they want from Ludwig and me, but that we don't have the right to disagree or to object (at least not without being called spoilsports or offensive).

Funnily, the people who are claiming that they should be treated more respectfully often don't live up to their own standards. I try not to be thin-skinned myself. Even when I am confronted with sulking (over-) reactions, I try to stay very friendly and welcoming. But there is a limit of how much I can take as well. And that limit has been reached. So, I think it is time for a clear statement:

Disagreeing in a discussion or not satisfying every wish is not offensive. It is what responsible adults do!

I can reassure you that both Ludwig and I try to be as kind as we can to everyone who either comments here or contacts us in private. And we are very happy about comments and private messages! Ludwig and I have a different style of writing, but I think every avid reader should recognize Ludwig's sometimes tongue-in-cheek style by now, so I don't see any reason for being thin-skinned with him, either. If you aren't sure about how a certain comment is meant, just tell us and we are very happy to discuss and solve the issue. Several positive examples show that this is indeed possible as well.

But I can't put up with some people being so demanding and at the same time so thin-skinned any more. The fact that I'm trying to be nice doesn't mean that I don't have any feelings or that I can't stand up for myself. This is a blog for grownups, not for sulking five-year-olds! If people want to be treated like responsible adults, I expect them to behave like responsible adults and do others the same favour.

There, I said it! I had to let that out, no matter what some people might be thinking of me now. I'm sorry for the 99.9 per cent of you who aren't in any way concerned by this topic. I thought about not publishing this post in order not to scare you away. But, seriously, I am not willing to take it any more and I had to release my anger.

It takes a very long time to get me there. But I have no desire to be the target of passive-aggressive or even actively aggressive behaviour any more. And if I have to bite to defend myself, so be it! I know that women (unlike men) are often perceived as being hysterical when they raise their voice. But I can guarantee you, I am not. I am very calm right now. I am just pissed off. That's all.

I assure you that my next post will be about something completely different. Most probably about spanking! Thanks to everyone who raised their heads and told a few things about themselves in reply to my last post. I hope that we will soon be having many more insightful discussions about spanking and philosophy on this blog.


Ursus Lewis said...

I found it quite rude of you not answering the email I never wrote! ;) You are right of course and sometimes it's good to vent too. Sometimes it's best to just ignore ill-mannered behavior...

Steve from Kent said...

I must admit to having some ‘history’ when it comes to this sort of thing. I’m not going into details about when or with who, other than to say that one learns from one’s errors.

The advice I would give to anyone sending unsolicited ideas to any spanking site, especially detailed scene descriptions, is not to be surprised or upset if your ideas are rejected.
I understand nowadays that there are a multitude of reasons for this, such as production resources, budget, and the performers’ limits, not to mention the preferences and aversions of individual players – which can be complex to say the least.
Each production team will know what they can and are prepared to act out on camera, and they cannot necessarily accommodate anybody else’s random spanking fantasies.

There are websites out there that I would love to submit ideas to, but I don’t for the above reasons. It means I have a collection of half-finished spanking stories on my hard drive, but c’est la vie.

Fenris said...

I think that most people who are in some kind of public spotlight have to deal with those problems. When you write about kinky subjects, things get even more complicated. Some people who are not out can get over-enthousiastic if they finally have someone with whom they think they can discuss the kink ( I plead guilty in this) but unfortunately, some people can get pushy and demanding or even threatening. Maybe it is the perceived anonymity of the web, maybe they behave like this on a daily basis.
It is also not uncommon that some people have problems to separate the public image of a celebrity from his or her private life. I once read that an actor from a German soap opera who plays a physician got tons of letters asking for medical advice, while other actors got threatened because they play an unpopular role. Perhaps, some readers don't realise that you have a private life, dayjobs and other business except kinky fun.
In the end, it is your blog, nobody has to pay for it, so you are free to write whatever you like, whenever you like, and do what you please. You post is not offending at all, in my opinion. It is just quite sad that some people seem to lack just basic politeness and manners.

Bobbie Jo said...

Your post was not offensive at all. You have the right to say what you need and want to say. I think most bloggers get those emails or replies that are very rude and usually it is from jealousy or the people involved are just the "acting like jerks" type. I have seen such on other blogs not related to our kink. It is sometimes hard to not get upset at it or scared from the ones who start threatening us. I take threats a bit seriously, but I think most of the time those who do it are just blustering around.

The ones that just don't get it and choose to be nasty aren't the ones you need to have around as they are usually toxic and just drag us down.

Does it hurt? Oh, yeah. Thing is, there are ways to deal with that, too.

I think this post was really needed to make a point and raise the issue of common decency, which isn't so common anymore. That is sad.

MasonPearson said...

I am sorry that you are getting hassled. I presume you get a humungously large readership (cos the blog is the best of its type) and that as in all things 1% of readers are 'pains in the neck'. Or loonies.
As we in the elite circles in the UK tend to say: "Don't let the bastards grind you down."
All best.


Olli said...

Kaelah, I have to say that I like you very much, especially for your honesty. Indeed, I'm really not concerned by that topic (I never wrote you an email (perhaps I should?) but did all my comments here in the blog) and I never drove a blog like you - but I'm watching this growing respectless behavior on the web and also in emails by myself, in my job and in private, too. That may be a "thing of our times", but I think that we are not to accept that. If someone gets into the light, e.g. in showbiz or even with a blog like yours, few people seem to think he (or she) is not "in public" but "public". Those poor minds are going to destroy so many fine things and I think, they are mentally not far away from these bastards who rape a girl, disclaiming that she were guilty by her own because of the short skirt she wore... Poor world that...

Thank you very much for not hiding with your mind!
"I like!" ;-)

Nimue said...

I always think it's a shame when a blogger has to write a post like this.

I love getting emails and comments with ideas and requests, but the people sending them need to realise that they are not entitled to a positive response from me. I think a lot of the problems come from a sense of entitlement which seems to be growing on the net. They forget that there are real people with their own needs, wants and desires behind blogs like yours, and that you are not exclusively there to meet their demands, and I hope that this blog reminds those who have been causing you problems of that fact!

Ludwig said...

It's wonderful to see Kaelah writing a proper and unadulterated rant for once, isn't it? Over the years since the two of us are together, I have become considerably more laid-back and diplomatic in discussions while she has become more likely to openly tell people off if certain limits are crossed. That is one of the great things in a relationship - you influence each other to try and find that "golden middle path".

The somewhat melodramatic "You won't be hearing from me again!" reaction by Anonymous #2 in the other thread was only the latest in a series of little incidents like that. While a minor thing in and of itself, I suppose it was the straw that broke the camel's back. There are some people who, if you don't agree with ideas or requests of theirs, really try to give you a bad conscience. Which is not warranted or fair at all, and it really starts getting on your nerves at some point.

In that thread and in other cases, Kaelah's and my usual response is to stay friendly and polite. But there comes a point where that only seems to encourage more entitled and whiny behaviour from some people. So, for those who just don't get it, I think a clear message was long overdue: this is a blog for grownups, not for over-sensitive drama queens. If you can't handle the rejection of an idea or a request, you are in the wrong place.

As Kaelah pointed out, the vast majority of you readers is not concerned by this, anyway. 9 out of 10 people who comment here or contact us by email are well-mannered and understanding, and we love to have you around.

Simon said...

When I was young I was always told "if you can't say something nice don't say anything at all". Of course that doesn't mean you can disagree with something but if you do you should do so in a reasonable and hopefully pleasant manner. Unfortunately I haven't always been able to live up to this ideal. I hope that none of my comments on this or any other blog have ever caused offence. I myself would never be brave enough to have a blog and open myself up the possibly unpleasant comments of others. Please don't allow yourself to become too upset as sometimes this is just the result that the person concerned is looking for.

Peter8862 said...

Very glad you've got it off your chest Kaelah. Let me assure both you and Ludwig that 9 out of 10 (Ludwig's figures; mine are 99 out of 100) truly appreciate the intelligence and the moderation of your blog. The remainder condemn themselves out of their own mouths.

vincent said...

Problem is you are probably too nice! Why should you have to take any nonsense of anyone? If their scenarios where unsolicited it goes with the territory that they are unlikely to be usefull.

Perhaps you should set a basic understanding that any that you like you will follow up (perhaps), any others thanks but no thanks.

As another poster has aptly said - "Dont let the bastards grind uyou down."

If they dont like it ?????

Kaelah said...

@ Ursus Lewis:
Didn't you receive my not-reply? ;-)

Joking aside, venting one's anger from time to time can indeed be a very healthy choice. :-)

@ Steve from Kent:
I absolutely agree with you, sending ideas to spanking sites is of course fine, especially if they are open for their customers' ideas. But of course not every wish can be made true, even if the producers would like to. And our blog isn't even a commercial site, we are just two kinksters who invest a huge part of our free time into this. So, I think it should be okay for our readers that we design our blog to our own liking and that we can't fulfill requests that would mean either lots of additional work or any kind of additional personal risk for us (by, for example, having to give away private information).

@ Fenris:
You are definitely not an overly demanding person! :-) I agree with you about your observations and I have also heard stories about actors who were confused with their roles. It's funny because I don't see myself as anyone who is in the spotlight, just as a normal person who happens to be a private blogger. But some people who only know me as "kinky Kaelah" might of course see me differently...

@ Bobbie Jo:
I agree with you, I think every blogger has to deal with rude people. I think the ones Ludwig and I had to deal with didn't even mean to be rude in the first place. Quite the contrary, they seemed to be very enthusiastic to give a positive and sometimes very personal input. The only thing these people seem to forget is that even if their intent is a positive one, Ludwig and I must have a chance to say: "Thank you, but, no, thank you." What I can't deal with are people who then suddenly get so upset that they first try to give us a bad conscience and then refuse to talk about it even if we send them an encouraging and very friendly reply.

@ MasonPearson:
Thanks for your encouraging comment! As I already wrote in my reply to Bobbie Jo, I don't think that these people meant to do any harm. They just seem to be so thin-skinned and easily upset that they aren't able to see the issue from Ludwig's and my perspective if we have to tell them that we unfortunately can't fulfill their requests.

@ Olli:
You are of course welcome to write an e-mail! It may just take a while before I manage to answer it properly.

I think some people are indeed very self-centred and don't have the ability to see things from different perspectives or to accept different opinions without feeling offended. As I already wrote in my reply to Bobbie Jo, I don't think that the people Ludwig and I had to deal with are in any way evil. But having the feeling that I have to walk around on tiptoes on my own blog in order not to scare anyone away is annoying, nonetheless. And constantly being given a bad conscience, too!

Kaelah said...

@ Nimue:
Thanks for your wonderfully written comment! :-) It summed up the situation perfectly. And entitlement is exactly the word that fits here.

@ Ludwig:
I absolutely agree with everything you said. :-) And I think writing a proper rant from time to time is definitely good for my health. Venting one's anger is so much better than swallowing it.

@ Simon:
I can't remember having ever seen an impolite comment from you!

I think you mentioned an important point. There is a huge difference between disagreeing about a certain topic and being rude or offensive. I guess one problem that we have in the online community and in our societies as a whole is that many people don't have the ability to distinguish the two properly, though. That's why some people already feel offended by being confronted with different opinions about a subject, and why others start insulting people in discussions instead of talking about the subject.

@ Peter8862:
Thanks for your encouraging comment! I also think that 99 per cent of our readers are not concerned by the topic.

@ vincent:
Indeed I asked myself the question whether my politeness encouraged people to be even more demanding and thin-skinned. And the need to have a "Thank you, but, no, thank you." option is what my post was all about. I guess the message was clear, now I will see whether things are going to change a bit.

Hincapie said...

Letting it all out now and then is always a good thing ... but expecting it to help is probably naive.

We all want special treatment, we all get stuck on ideas and we all have a hidden little drama queen inside waiting to throw a tantrum .... so letting us loose on more or less anonymous blogs is a recipe for seeing the worst of us. Luckily, sometimes you get to see the most creative and innovative sides of people too - which is usually why blogging, the interaction and the feedback remains worthwhile.

Kaelah said...

@ Hincapie:
I have to admit that I was lucky so far, we usually get friendly comments and e-mails. And even the few negative experiences weren't caused by people who meant to be unkind in the first place. Quite the contrary. But I guess that the feeling of "entitlement" that some readers develop as Nimue so aptly described can indeed cause some problems for bloggers. And I think that talking about these things and drawing a clear line can help to make people think twice in the future before they throw any tantrums because of unfilled requests. At least I hope so.

Spankingfreunde.DE said...

Das Posting hier ist mir durch die Latten gegangen irgendwie! @Kaelah
ich verstehe Dich ziemlich gut!

Aber glaubst du im Ernst, du könntest Neid und Frust aus der Welt schaffen?

Vieles Ärger mächtig! Einige Zeit! Bis man das Stickmuster erkennt! Dann fängt es an zu amüsieren!

Als 2. Erkenntnis tut sich einem auf, Neid und Frust entsorgen sich selbst, nachhaltig!

Vielleicht erzählt dir Ludwig etwas über SPL wo er eine zeitlang aktiv war und das Ende.

Ludwig said...

@ Ich war auf SPL eigentlich nicht besonders aktiv. In all den Jahren, wo ich dort registriert war, habe ich glaube ich keine 20 Postings geschrieben. Ich habe auch nicht mitbekommen (noch hätte es mich interessiert), unter welchen Umständen das Forum zu Ende gegangen ist.

Zum Thema: Neid und Frust schafft man mit einem Posting wie diesem sicher nicht aus der Welt. Aber man zieht eine klare Linie in den metaphorischen Sand und schreckt in Zukunft vielleicht ein paar der üblichen Verdächtigen davon ab, aufdringlich und unhöflich zu werden. Oder, falls es schon sonst nichts bringt, man macht seinem Ärger Luft und baut ihn damit ab. Das ist gesund! *grins*

Spankingfreunde.DE said...

Nein das ist nicht gesund!
Gesund ist, sobald du amüsiert drüber lächeln kannst!

Ludwig said...

@ Überlass uns mal, zu wissen, was für uns gesund ist. Und wir überlassen Dir, zu wissen, was für Dich gesund ist.

Kaelah said...

@ Spankingfreunde:
Du hast natürlich recht, es bringt nichts, sich über Neid und Frust zu ärgern. Aber bei den Dingen, von denen ich berichtet habe, ging es darum eigentlich nicht. Es ist vielmehr nur so, dass manche Leute zu vergessen scheinen, dass Ludwig und ich auch nur Menschen sind, die das hier in unserer Freizeit machen, und dass sie nicht alles mögliche von uns erwarten dürfen. Außerdem fällt es manchen Leuten einfach schwer, inhaltliche Differenzen und persönliche Beleidigungen auseinanderzuhalten. Ich möchte aber auf meinem eigenen Blog nicht auf Zehenspitzen herumlaufen müssen. Deshalb war der Post notwendig und auch hilfreich. Es gab seither keine überzogenen Forderungen mehr und es haben sich sogar extra neue Leute gemeldet, denen es wichtig ist, auf einem Blog zu diskutieren, auf dem persönliche Attacken tabu sind, auf dem man aber offen inhaltlich diskutieren kann. Und ich denke, dass mich solche Dinge bewegen und manchmal auch wütend machen, zeigt nur, dass mir der Blog und die Szene etwas bedeuten. Gefühle sind gesund und wichtig, auch und gerade die, die in unserer Gesellschaft als „schlecht“ angesehen werden. Wichtig ist nur, dass man sie weder unterdrückt, noch sich von ihnen beherrschen lässt, sondern sie positiv nutzt. Und das tue ich. Wenn mich die Dinge hier nicht mehr berühren, dann ist es wohl an der Zeit, mit dem Bloggen aufzuhören.

Anonymous said...

In our rush to assure the vanilla world how sort-of-normal we all are, we forget sometimes that the spanko community IS like any other corner of the world as a whole: There are some people who are exemplary and others who are simply idiots. And as with idiots elsewhere, if they are making a nuisance of themselves and clearly do not have enough sense to know it, it is the sad task of the rest of us to tell them so. One need never, EVER apologize for that, any more than a parent should have to apologize to the rest of the world for correcting her bratty child. To be sure, it may not necessarily teach the little rotter to behave better but it at least reassures the rest that if they step out of line they WILL get the same. Three cheers to you!

Kaelah said...

@ Anonymous:
Welcome, and thanks for your support! Actually, I prefer to always stay respectful with others and not to tell adults off. The aim of my post was just to release some anger and to raise some awareness about my situation. As for children, I think if parents take enough time for them right from the beginning, if they are good role-models and give them clear rules, then children usually don't become annoying brats in the first place.