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Bondage

Handcuffs

You may not leave

The word brings a picture to your mind. It does for everyone who reads it. I mean for it to provoke you. I mean for it to hold your attention. I mean for it to make you think. Let’s talk about bondage.

Merriam Says

My go-to definition man says bondage means:

1. the tenure or service of a villein, serf, or slave

2. a state of being bound usually by compulsion (as of law or mastery): as
   a: captivity, serfdom
   b: servitude or subjugation to a controlling person or force <young people in bondage to drugs>

3. sadomasochistic sexual practices involving the physical restraint of one partner

Choose

This is what you thought. You guessed the definition without Googling.

Jewish Slaves

Hebrew slaves built the Great Pyramids and dug the tombs in the Valley of the Kings (Egypt).

Slavery: It may not have been your first instinct, but it came to mind. The horrific atrocities we commit, one against the other. Slavery is the stripping away of one’s rights to press the slave into service to the master, the condemnation of the slave to forfeit humanity and be considered chattel.

The enslaving of others to do our bidding is overt and subversively subtle: not only the grand monuments to self, like the pyramids or the Pantheon, but also the mundane manipulations, like the spousal delivery of coffee or the friendly errand running.

Gambling Addiction

If I can just play one more, I can win back everything and then some.

Conscripted: Have you encountered this one? You know someone who is in the grasp of a compulsion. Did you guess the simple ones? Drugs, alcohol, gambling. It is easy to pick out the banes of our society.

Or was the image you chose of something more subtle, harder to discern, but still compulsive? A meme seeking the limelight, the sex addict unfulfilled in loveless relationships, the social media basement dweller living without friends.

Marquise de Sade

Author and namesake of all sadists

Sadomasochism: The Marquise de Sade may not have been the image you brought to mind, but you certainly have a picture of this definition. Depictions of whips and chains, dog leashes and paddles. Perhaps, kinbaku, gags or picquerism.

What of the less cliché sadist and masochist habits? Binding (feet, waists, appetites) to be a certain socially acceptable size. Gossiping once feelings have been openly hurt. Willful blindness and deafness.

Not Me

Before you can eradicate it you must acknowledge bondage is a part of your everyday existence. The realization we choose bondage may not be palatable, even in the confines of our most private spaces. The difficulty of the realization does not negate the existence of bondage.

Death & Taxes

The single most commonly used phrase around the globe is The only things inevitable are death and taxes. Experience proves that statement as a half-truth. Death is the only inevitable thing. Everything else, we choose to do.

Obligatory

When you made your now list, you filled it with the things you felt you must do everyday. How many of those things on your I absolutely have to do this list are really anything beyond bondage?

No, I am not telling you to shirk all responsibility. We create for ourselves obligations which are consequences of our choices: children, occupations, care of others. These choices are reasonable. They lack the coercion of classic bondage. So, which things on your list are coercive?

Wine

It just becomes a habit.

Habits: Even good habits can be bondage when we allow them to infringe on everyday life to the point it takes away from our enjoyment of life. How much angst do you cause yourself trying to find the certified organic food in the grocery? Do you drive (and burn two extra gallons of gas) to recycle a small bag of items? Do you give until it hurts, and then cannot pay your bills?

Doing: We all have the little niceties we do for others. Sometimes, we know we do them. Others, we do not even notice. Everyday, morning coffee is delivered with a smile. Is it because someone wanted to bring it to you or because you expect it and when you do not get it, you pout, making everyone around you miserable?

Conformity: Everyone needs companionship. What we are willing to sacrifice to have friends can easily become masochistic. Have you ever stopped doing something you love because Quaint or Mate hates it? Or were you the one who demanded one of them to stop something they loved?

Slave or Master?

Is it hard for you to choose which you are the most? Look at how the demands you place on yourself and others impact both of you. When we feel obligated or compelled to do something, resentment silently and slowly creeps in and sends tendrils deep within our unconscious minds. Often, we do not notice it until it is mature enough to bloom and bear the fruit of anger.

When the vine gets heavy, have you ever asked how the anger got so large? We fertilize resentment. Its main sources of food are silence, good intentions and love. Our intentions to (help, please, praise) the ones we love compel us to act against our own (beliefs, morals, desires). When we suffer under the bonds silently, resentment blossoms.

Sometimes, the ones we love are ourselves. We obligate ourselves to do things which, over time, breed resentment. We nourish it into self-loathing. Our intention is most often pleasure. Our silence comes when we fail to change once we know our behavior is not edifying for us.

 

No Silence

Break the Silence

Breaking the Silence

How hard is it to say, “I do not want to do this any more.”? Sometimes, it is very difficult. It is easier to complain, easier to voice the resentment, easier to blame the compulsion. Is that truly breaking the silence?

No. In order to truly break the silence, one must admit the resentment, resolve to resist the compulsion and refuse the behavior. It sounds very simple.

~~~~~~~~~~

What in your life is bondage? Have you broken bonds? How do you break bonds without costing the relationship? Or is it impossible to keep a relationship after bondage?


( c) Red Dwyer 2012
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19 Comments

  1. That title was a big tease Red. Shame on you. :P

    Reply
  2. OMG, they named a wine after me?

    Reply
  3. I am in bondage….I admit it freely and without any shame whatsoever.

    I love my cigarettes. I love my coffee. I love them together. I would crawl over broken glass for them. I would bite the head off most anyone who tried to keep me apart from them.

    When I woke from a coma the first thing I asked for was a shower, the second? A cigarette.

    Shoes come next……don’t tell me I should break my chains!

    Reply
    • My darling sister, since we were only separated at birth by a handful of years, our genetic propensities are only cause for quandary when they impinge another. Would that we wore the same size shoe ;)

      Reply
    • Val I have the same “bond” you have LOL

      Reply
  4. For me, bondage used to be something else, but now it’s a laptop with a WiFi connection!

    Great post, Red!

    Reply
    • At times, it is bondage for me as well. I have to be mindful of the difference between desire and obligation and the cost of both to me and my family ;)

      Reply
  5. Ajhj Bondage. Wait. What did you say?

    Reply
  6. Hmmm… To me bondage is sex with strings attached! ;)

    Jokes aside: I was tied to helping Darrell after his stroke because nobody else could – and he was alcoholic so would say anything, do anything, to get his booze.

    When I refused to go get him his beer he walked to the shop and phoned me from there: “Ian my back’s gone – can you come and get me?”

    When I eventually got there by taxi to rescue him he was stood outside the shop with a cart full of beer that he would have been physically incapable of getting into his flat.

    Needless to say he eventually died of multiple organ failure due to alcoholism, but that was the end of his efforts to control me.

    When Doug moved in he tried to put the frighteners on me, boasting of his gangster connections, then when he met me in Middleton as I was out shopping, he demanded to know why I wasn’t guarding his flat!!!

    Needless to say I just laughed at him.

    Today I have broken off contact with him, but he still knocks on my door when he needs help – despite my telling him I wouldn’t help him any more – begging for sleeping pills etc.

    He has gone from attempting to dominating me to pitiful begging – a weak bully who now tries to manipulate rather than dominate…

    Love and hugs!

    Prenin.

    Reply
    • Sounds like bonds broken. Those would not have been the types of relationships to attempt to salvage without complete overhaul on the other party’s part. Unlikely is probably the kindest term I could use, although impossible would probably be more apt.
      {HUGZ}
      Red.

      Reply
  7. What in your life is bondage? I have broken many bonds over the years that held me in bondage. I still have a few – mostly in the form of habits that no longer function – that I still need to work on. It’s amazing how we can wrap ourselves in self-appointed obligations, and then resent others for accepting what we chose to give.

    I hone in on this aspect because I have people in my life right now who are going through bondage to resentment. The resentment comes from expecting others to read their minds, expecting others to see and apprecaite (basically read their minds), not speaking up honestly when needed (wanting others to read their minds), etc..

    The worst bondage is the bondage we are unaware of, whether we impose it by expecting others to know what they cannot know or whether we accept it by doing what we think others want us to do.

    Great post! Angie

    Reply
    • Most people never consider themselves the masters, yet often, we are just that.

      Reply
  8. Androgoth

     /  March 5, 2012

    You little cheat ;) lol
    And I was ready with all
    the wicked stuff too…

    Never mind though because
    I have been looking around
    your new look Space and it
    is rather wicked :)

    Keep adding to your great
    Space here Red and I am in
    no doubt that your target is
    going to be reached sooner
    rather than later :)

    Have fun tonight :)

    Androgoth XXx

    Reply
  9. My bondage is to my family. I cannot say no ENOUGH of the time.

    On the other hand, books hold a captivating type of bondage over me and no, I can’t get enough of them. I want to read them ALL.

    Nothing and no-one else binds me (that I can think of without extented analysis).

    Reply
    • Red

       /  March 5, 2012

      I understand the family thing… a lot. I like the book thing. It is more desire than compulsion…unless you are foregoing important things to read. But, you are like me, you can read while you do something else.

      Reply
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