This weekend there was a pretty big local event here, the NorthwestLeather Conference, or NWLC. It’s sponsored by smOdyssey, a group of which I have just recently become a member. I did not attend the conference. However, there was a separate event yesterday being held in a private room of the hotel, open to everyone, registered conference attendee or no. Husband and I came to that.
I had the opportunity to walk around the hotel a bit, say hi to some of my friends, and see what all the fuss was about. I’ll tell you right now—next year, I’m buying at least a Saturday day pass to this thing. The conference schedule looked amazing, and I’m sorry I missed so many amazing classes (not to mention a kickass party Saturday night).
Of course, not being a registered attendee yesterday, I was unable to enter many of the rooms and suites set aside for the conference. One of the rooms I really, really wanted to check out was the vendor space. Literally every single one of my friends who entered that blocked off room came out with something amazing! I couldn’t even ask them to take pictures for me, because photography was not allowed.
I asked at the register table if I could have permission to go into the vendor space. They said no, not without a pass. I asked if there was a special pass I could buy, just for the vendor space, and they said no—I would have to buy the whole day pass. Seeing as how Husband was already on his way to pick me up from the hotel, I declined.
Outside the vendor room, standing with a circle of friends, I bemoaned my unhappiness (and jealousy) of my friends buying such cool stuff. More than a few of them offered to give me their passes from around their necks so I could go into the vendor space. I refused.
“Just put it on and go in,” they said. “Nobody will know the difference.”
“But I asked if I could go in, and they said no,” I explained.
“They told you you need a pass. Take mine for a few minutes. It’s not a big deal.”
“It’s not right. They told me I need to pay.”
“That’s silly. Here, just take it,” they said.
I still refused.
“It’s not right,” I kept saying. “I’m not doing it.”
After I made it clear I was against doing it because of the principle of the thing, one man, a friend of mine, said to me, “you would do it if your Husband told you to.”
I thought about it...for about a tenth of a second. “He never would,” I stated. “He is my Dom, and he would never ask me to go against something I thought was wrong. It’s one of the reasons why he’s my Dom.”
“He would never ask her to go against her integrity,” another friend interjected.
This woman, someone well-known and well-respected in the scene, had managed to say succinctly what I had not been able to, and the rest of the arguments finally stopped.
The whole episode got me thinking, though. Would I have taken someone else’s pass and used it for my advantage if Husband had told me to? Probably. I would have assumed he must have a good reason to tell me to do such a thing. Given that he knows I would be morally against it, and given that he respects my sense of ethics, I would trust he would not order me to do such a thing unless he was privy to information I was not, information he would later share with me to assuage my guilt.
But, the truth is…Husband would never ask me to do something like that. In fact, he would be angry with me for going against my better judgment, and giving into peer pressure.
He expects me to hold myself to certain beliefs; that is one of the reasons why he chose me as his wife. I hold to these beliefs, with or without his say-so, and he expects me to continue to do so; that is one of the reasons why I chose him as my Husband.
My Dom would never ask me to go against my core ethical beliefs, because I would never allow someone to be my Dom who could do so.
If your Dom, Master, Top, Whathaveyou, if this person is asking you to engage in behavior you find immoral, unethical, or basically goes against your better judgment, that is a major red flag. This person should no longer have that kind of influence over you. A D/M should never ask you to behave badly in a way you’ll later regret; a D/M should always expect the best of you, so you can be the best person you can be, proud of who you are, happy in your own skin.
Now, do I think it’s a stupid rule that NWLC doesn’t allow non-conference-attendees to check out the vendors' space? Absolutely, yes. I think the vendors would probably benefit from more people—aka, more potential customers—checking out their wares. I think, in the future, the conference should think about selling cheap badges that would let people at least see what's for sale.
But my opinion on the wisdom of the rule doesn’t change what I was told. I was told I could not go in, so I did not.
When I came home, I told Husband what had happened, and what I did. He was pleased. He always likes to hear when I conduct myself well. It makes him proud.
His pride in me is the best reward there is.