Unexpected Disapproval

July 26, 2012 Uncategorized  4 comments

This is a picture I posted yesterday on my Facebook profile:

It seems pretty innocuous to me.  It’s from 1964, please note that there is no nudity, no sexual acts, it’s mostly funny, to me, for the juxtaposition.  Guy in full leather, guy in bikini, standing side by side.  It’s very dated, and it was, to me, just an amusing old photo.

It seems, however, to have been a catalyst to end a friendship of 30+ years.

If  you’ve read my blog over the last week or so, you knew that a friend of mine, one of my old friends from my youthful dyke days, was in town for a visit.  I saw a lot of her.

I don’t do a lot of compartmentalization.  My life is my life, and I’m pretty open about it.  I don’t really have a reason not to be.  For one thing, I’m perfectly comfortable with everything I am, and the things I do, or I wouldn’t do them.

I had not seen my ex for a few weeks, so there were things I told her that matter to me – I was nominated for a Pantheon of Leather Lifetime Achievement award, I’m judging an International contest.  There were also questions about why I couldn’t spend more time – I had a BDSM 101 class, I had a co-topping demo I’d agreed to, I had a Masters And slaves Together meeting, I had a Sunday munch.

I didn’t DO anything, or SHOW anything.  I talked about my life, as I would in most circumstances, in fairly generic terms, as I would have with Beth and her girlfriend alone.

So, Lynn left on Tuesday morning.  On Wednesday, I posted that photo.

I got a comment from Lynn, one of two on the photo.  The other one was saying they hadn’t been able to find the archives mentioned in the photo share.

The other was a comment from Lynn.  “And I would want to see this why?”  I have since removed this, mostly for the sake of her identity.

I thought it was an offhand comment, the kind of silly thing you might say to someone, particularly if you’re a gay female and it’s pictures of a male.  I sent back a smile, and that’s all.

It was not an offhand comment.

Children can see that picture, you know.

“I would think you would want to keep more explicit S&M stuff posted for your S&M group of friends. Not really appropriate for everybody on facebook.”  She also mentioned that children could see the post.

I responded that the photo was tamer by far than any child could come up with by doing a simple Google search, and that if someone didn’t control their children’s access to material they found offensive, it did not put a requirement on me to censor myself.

I pointed out that the posts I make supporting gay marriage, which she often shares, and some of the posts I make about Republicans, probably are offensive to a lot of people, but that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t say it.

Her response: “I don’t judge you for your preferences, but if you don’t get that others may not want to be exposed to it, you’ve clearly lost your way. Gay marriage and S&M comparisons are not apples to apples in any way, shape or form.”

So, I suggested again that she unfriend me if she liked, but that if she planned to keep contacting me to tell me how wrong and bad I was, I wouldn’t respond again.

I told her I loved her and always would, and that she was always welcome in my home, but that I didn’t expect I’d be in contact again, and she could keep up with me through Beth, if she cared to do that.

So, that seems to be that.  She responded, a one sentence remark that she wasn’t going to pursue it, but I know Lynn enough to know, I won’t hear from her again.

And all because of a stupid picture that wasn’t worth, truly it wasn’t, the breaking of a friendship of 30 year’s standing.

4 comments to Unexpected Disapproval

  • vanillamom  says:

    I’m so sorry about this, Ms. Constance. Sorry as can be.

    nilla

    • MsConstanceExplains  says:

      As am I, thank you. I think it’s clear she was looking for a stand on which to make her case, and she took the first one that came along. I think the picture is g-rated, in fact, and hardly something only appropriate for my “S&M crowd.”

      It is what it is, but it does make me sad that you would throw away 30 years, and it’s not like I’m in her face a lot – haven’t seen her for nearly 20 years, we swap perhaps three emails or texts a year.

      But, again, it is what it is. If she feels that way, then I suppose I am better off without.

  • sin  says:

    I think we all decide where we are going to draw the lines between saying what we think and potentially offending friends. We do it here on our blogs and we do it on Facebook and in our real lives too. It’s always a bit of a balancing act, and in the end we all have to do what seems right for us.

    Sorry you had this conflict. Actually it sounds like your friend was kind of a jerk about it. She could easily have just moved on past it. Or even unfriended you. She chose confrontation.

    And…. kids are supposed to be 13 to be on facebook. That photo sure isn’t telling anything to any 13 year old.

    -sin

    • MsConstanceExplains  says:

      I think she was looking for a battle by the time she got home – I was too out, too ok with myself, too unwilling to hide what I do away and lie, and that bothered her. What struck me as the two most ironic aspects were that she picked a post that was genuinely and truly not offensive – odd, perhaps, but not offensive on any level – and that the arguments she made were the same ones someone might make to her about her gayness. It’s not that I object, mind you, but it’s just not appropriate around kids, why do you have to be so in-your-face about it, why can’t you just keep it under wraps where it won’t offend anyone? Why do you have to be so difficult? Can’t you keep it behind doors and under covers? Because, clearly, the worst thing I can do is make someone actually confront something that makes them uncomfortable.

      Actually, I’m fairly circumspect about what I post on Facebook. You could figure out I’m a vehement supporter of gay marriage and equal rights for gays. You could figure out I am extremely liberal politically, that I’m big on animal causes, that I’m definitely a little fringe-y, I do some odd things, but I don’t generally post anything overtly sexual, I don’t post much with obscenities or even R-rated photos. My niece and one of my friend’s daughters are my friends, and I do keep that in mind. I can be edgy and alternative, but I honestly don’t think most people would consider it offensive.

      The funny thing is, the only other negative comments I have ever gotten were directed at my support of gay marriage from my obviously more conservative acquaintances from high school. None of them even objected to this photo. Just my Lesbian friend. Or former friend, as is apparently the case.

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