Last month (December 2019) I submitted an application to join a small, gay men’s Leather club in my city. I assumed it was a simple formality to gather demographic information, and to learn about my experience, interest and commitment to the BDSM/KINK lifestyle and community. Also it asked for talents and skills that would potentially be a benefit to the club and its members.
I’d submitted the application twice before to this club. The first time I was added to the email list and received notices of some meetings. However, with some of the email meeting announcements I got a personal note as well saying that I couldn’t attend business meetings and I co
uldn’t attend special meetings. So I never knew from month to month if I should plan on going or not. So I was really confused. I don’t remember now exactly, but it seems at some point I just stopped receiving the meeting notices. I did attend some meetings, the ones that were educational and a couple social ones. But, there was no real structure or regularity for when I could and couldn’t attend.
Also, around that time I was unable to attend because of the demise of my long term relationship. After 38 years I packed up what I could get in my car and left. So the club was not exactly a priority at that time. Plus I was already a member of the boys club so I had a connection to the gay men’s leather scene here.
In addition to my personal relationship problems, I heard a rumor that was later confirmed, that there was conflict within the leather club and among quite a few of its members.
Then in early 2019 I contacted the secretary of the club to resubmit my application. Again I received notices of some meetings or socials. At the same time I was really hot and heavy, and deeply in love, with a man who wanted me to be his Sir. I thought it would be beneficial as a new Dominant/Top/Sir to be a part of the club to better develop as a Dom. My boy and I attended one of that club’s socials, a pool party, together and I thought we had a good time.
Later, on the way home the boy said he didn’t care for some of the members of the club and didn’t want to join or be involved with them. But he didn’t want his opinion to sway my interest in completing my application process. After some consideration, and in a cloud of love, i ended up aligning with him and rescinded my application.
Well, if you’ve read any of my blogs from last year you know how that relationship disastrously imploded on May 1st. Also, I ended up having 3 surgeries in a ten month period of time. So, i wouldn’t have had the time, ability, emtional state or stamina to have maintained my commitment to the application and “trial” period anyway. So it was a good decision at the time not to join.
But, by December 2019 I was ready to get back in the saddle – or sling, as it were – and recommit to my interest in and dedication to the gay men’s Leather community. So, I attended a large Leather community Holiday dinner with over fifty leatherfolk – nearly all men. i sat next to a member of the club and his boyfriend. And we had a nice time together.
Then, a little over a week later I met with that same friend who is one of the club’s officers for coffee. We discussed the club and my history with the Leather community and in the BDSM/Kink lifestyle. I was given an application and told how the process would proceed.
That night I completed the application and confidently submitted it online via text to my friend with whom I’d had coffee.
The holidays came and went. No word from anyone about upcoming meetings or anything pertaining to my membership application. So on the 4th of January I messaged my friend, the one who gave me the application. No response from him until the next day.
Then Sunday morning I received what I felt was a cold response:
Thank you for your interest in xxxxxxx (name of the club club).
Unfortunately your application for membership was voted on and denied.
xxxx (friend’s name)
No explanation from him about why I was rejected.
Dumbfounded doesn’t adequately express my feelings. I had to reread the message a couple times. Why would I be denied membership? I know quite a few of the men in the really small club. Which members would vote against my admission to the club and why?
A year or so ago the club fractured losing about half of its membership. So silly me assumed my application would happily be accepted and my interest and presence would be welcomed. Color me surprised at how delusional I was about the club and its members!!
This is a description of the club from their Facebook page:
So where in their rejection of me do they adhere to the statement that they exist to:
members of the gay men’s Leather community??
Ok. You may think, well it was your 3rd application submission. How committed to membership was I? I hadn’t followed through with the first two. I’ll grant you that. But if there was a question about my sincerity, why didn’t someone just simply call or text to discuss my previous applications and to discern my level of interest and commitment to follow through with this application?
I entered 2020 with new excitement, new hopes and a rekindled desire to be active and involved after the very difficult physically and emotionally draining year of 2019. I wrote down a list of organizations, clubs, meetings and volunteer activities that I wanted to pursue this year in order to make friends, find a purpose in life, grow in my knowledge and skills as a Dom…and perhaps find a real boy to be my boyfriend in 2020.
What a shitty fucking thing to do!!
No wonder they lost half of their membership. You would think they would be out soliciting membership in the name of support, mentorship and inclusivity they espouse in the already small Leather community.
After my initial feelings of shock, anger and sadness, I realized if that is their prevailing attitude and approach to someone who has been in the community for about four years who wants to join, then I don’t want to be member.
When I was a new nurse I was told “nurses eat their young!” That meant older, experienced nurses made it very uncomfortable and unwelcoming to new nurses fresh out of nursing school.
I’m not quite sure why that attitude and approach to new nurses developed. One would think nurses, who are notoriously over worked, under paid, and chronically short staffed would welcome and nurture new nurses – reinforcements, as it were. But, no. My first years working in a hospital were difficult, and made even more so by the older seasoned nurses who made life miserable for me.
I made a personal vow not to continue that legacy. I always welcomed, supported, encouraged, educated, nurtured and appreciated every new nurse who joined our ranks.
It’s really too bad, and so sad, that the gay men’s Leather club in my city has such an exclusionary, cliquey presence.
I’m better off without them. And it’s really, ultimately their loss!!
Thanks for reading,