Friday, March 28, 2014

PRICK- Personal Responsibility In Consensual Kink

There are a few acronyms floating around that make up what can loosely be quantified as the ethical compass for BDSM.

There's SSC (safe, sane, consensual) that is often one of the first acronyms discovered by a newbie because it's discussed so often. I, personally, don't care for it because often what we do has some risk so safety is not guaranteed, and it may not seem all that sane.

The next acronym to be discovered is often RACK (risk aware consensual kink). I like this one much better because it implies that there is risk involved in a lot of the things we do and the person doing them should be aware of those risks before consenting to play.

And then there's PRICK (personal responsibility in consensual kink).

PRICK popped up on my radar a few years ago though it's probably been in use long before it caught on enough to show up in the forums of the Kinkyverse. It's not really in the same league as the first two acronyms and doesn't get as many mentions, but it is by far my favorite.

Why? Because as often as I harp on about personal responsibility it's nice to see that someone has made it into an acronym in order to get the message out there. Personal responsibility has become such a big deal that it's being talked about more often and being added to the acronym list gives it the weight that it deserves. It's becoming part of the ethical compass of kink and that's cool.

But what is it?
What PRICK means is that you are responsible for yourself in consensual kink. Your safety, your feelings, your general well-being are your responsibility.

It means that your default setting shouldn't be to expect your partner/Top/Dominant/Master/etc to take care of those things for you, because while it's a nice fantasy that the infallible Top-Type person will inherently know if you're in trouble, will always keep you safe, and will never-ever do anything to harm you emotionally or physically- it happens. Accidents happen, bad people happen, and PRICK points out (sorry, bad pun) that it is your responsibility to ensure to the best of your ability that it doesn't happen.

It means that if something is happening or about to happen or has happened that you are not OK with, that you'll speak up (or signal, if speaking isn't an option) and let your partner know because you are responsible for yourself.

It means that if something bad happens (Dog forbid) because of a communication snafu or bad luck accident, you won't automatically blame the Top Type Person (or the s-type, this does go two ways after all). You'll hopefully ask yourself, "Self, was there anything I could have done that might have contributed to this situation?" before pinning the guilt all on your partner in play.

It means, in a nut shell, that you are an adult, responsible person capable of looking out for yourself, whatever side of the slash you fall on.

It's an awfully neat acronym.

And about the only time you can say, "I'm a prick!" and feel good about it.

Disclaimer: YMMV. This is how I interpret these acronyms and my thoughts should not be taken as The One True Way, because they're not.