Friday, June 3, 2022

On wearing latex in public

Wearing latex in public is one of my favourite things to do. It’s an exciting and titillating way to wear rubber and something I have done on a number of occasions around the world. And when I say wearing latex, I mean head-to-toe, total coverage. Catsuit, hoods, gloves, the whole enchilada. 

I know lots of other kinksters and fetishists who enjoy this as well, and there are few things as fun as a bunch of us gearing up and going out into public, usually downtown in a major city. Sometimes there is an occasion, such as the Montreal Fetish Weekend’s Photo Walk (an absolute blast, but make sure you are prepared for high heat and humidity), and the Vancouver Fetish Weekend Fetish Cruise. There’s no hiding fetish outfits under baggy clothing, no change room once you are inside the club. It’s all out in the open, front and center. Anonymity is basically guaranteed if you are wearing a hood. Once you realize that no one outside of your fetish friends has a clue who you are, you tend to relax and really enjoy it.

I have been walked around on a leash as well - collared, cuffed and coming to heel to my Mistress or whoever is leading me along. It’s super exciting and really appeals to my submissive nature. I love to observe the expressions of the public and passers-by who often don’t even seem to notice. In my experience, there are three main types of reactions:

  1. The Tunnel Vision - these people have no reaction, and don’t even look. Whether they are avoiding looking or are literally so absorbed in their world that they don’t even see it, who knows. 
  2. The Double Take - these people notice and look and casually glance away before jerking their heads and staring. It takes a second for their brains to register something truly odd and then literally do a double-take, like in cartoons.
  3. The High Five - These people are the best. They are very vocal and supportive and immediately express their delight at our appearance and sometimes ask if they can have their photo taken. It’s super fun and reassuring. It all adds up to a life less ordinary and many people absolutely love that.

I have almost never been cat-called or ridiculed or verbally abused when all dressed up. I definitely make sure that I only go out in public in my gear in environments where I know there will be general acceptance (waltzing into a shitkicker bar in rural Texas is probably never going to happen), but I am still amazed at how few times I have had a bad experience.

I’ve gone into restaurants on a leash and have spent the meal kneeling at the table beside my Mistress and waiting for permission to eat or drink. In every single instance, the wait staff have been hugely supportive and have expressed their delight at the scenario. Only once has anyone asked me to tone it down, and this was in a nice lunch spot in Long Beach, California, where the manager came up to us and said they we were making some of the other patrons uncomfortable and requested that I take my hood off and sit at the table. I of course complied. Our server turned out to be kinky and we had a blast talking about bondage and rope. 

There are, however, people in the fetish scene that frown heavily on latex in public, and make the claim that, by wearing latex and fetish clothing in public (especially when on a leash or in gimp gear), I am violating the public’s consent by involuntarily including them in sexual play. I disagree with this perspective, mainly because I don’t think that anyone outside of the scene who doesn’t have a fetish for latex relates my appearance to something sexual. If you don’t fetishize something, then you have absolutely no clue why someone else would associate sexual pleasure from its appearance or by putting it on. Take feet, for example. I have absolutely no bloody clue why someone would find feet sexually arousing. I just don’t get it. At all. Yet there are those who are totally obsessed and turned on by feet, and spend their whole lives worshipping them, fantasizing about being given foot jobs and looking at photos. For me, feet are just parts of the human body that allow bipedal locomotion, and it isn’t until someone puts on sexy shoes or boots do things get interesting. The tighter and shinier, the better, of course. 

To me, this disapproval is an indication of the shame that the critic has about their own sexuality. They are uncomfortable with it, clearly, and can only imagine this kind of thing in the privacy of their own home or in a club at a fetish night. Their inability (or refusal) to see these antics as innocent fun is telling. I know people who are concerned by children seeing this kind of thing, but I would remind them that if you are taking your young child out in a major metropolitan downtown core, those kids are going to be exposed to far more traumatic things than a man in a gimp suit. They will see the homeless, the insane, the drunks, all manner of loud and boisterous individuals who are potentially dangerous, least of all disturbing.

I might appear like a superhero to them, for all I know, and I must state that I am fully clothed at all times. There is no nudity, no exposed genitalia. While I am, without a doubt, dressed in a very odd fashion, there is nothing obscene about it. How does my attire differ from someone in a wetsuit? There is an equal amount of skin showing. 

And who knows, perhaps me being out with a beautiful woman similarly dressed in latex is the trigger for some young person who is hard-wired to be a fetishist but has never been exposed to it before. I just hope that this young person isn’t shamed into hiding it and denying their passions and obsessions. Whether you like them or not, they are there, and the healthier and more accepting we are about them, the better. It is doing no one any harm.

As a father of a boy who is only a couple years away from puberty, I can relate to the shame aspect and find myself becoming very uncomfortable at just the thought of a part of my kink life spilling over into my home life. But I remind myself that this shame has nothing to do with anything but my own childhood shame about my sexuality and the conflict that arises whenever the two worlds collide. I like to keep things separate but I also realize that he is going to be exposed to a lot of things in his life that he doesn’t understand. It is my job as a parent to shepherd him through his early years and explain things as best I can. If he sees something and has questions, I will answer them truthfully and in a manner appropriate to where he is in that moment. 

But what I won’t do is express my disdain or disapproval in front of him at someone out in public who is doing no one any harm and doing nothing illegal. He can form his own opinions and ask me whatever questions he likes, which is what every parent should do. What are your thoughts? Please comment below. 

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