On Confrontation

I didn’t know how to write my last post. The person behind it has been “a pain in the ass” to a lot of sex positive, kinky, poly, and other individuals in the sex world. It’s also leached out into his other social arenas. Most people think he’s a problem and when someone is relegated to “douchebag” status, people tend to just roll their eyes when serious violations are spoken about. I didn’t know if it was ‘drama’ to mention that I was romantically involved with this individual and that in their “activist” quest, they had someone attend a sex party I hosted and openly blogged what they perceived to be my failures–which amounted to the kind of body I have–and then detailed what I did during a sexual demo. I do know that I’ve considered him dangerous for awhile and the long version of the actual confrontation can be found here. I will post screencaps of the conversation as well.

It’s not considered professional to talk about the behind-the-scenes romantic issues behind the scenes and this offers him a lot of cover. It is a crucial detail that we dated, that we were intimate, and that although we weren’t involved very long it possessed these details: he was charismatic on the internet (much more so at the time when Kink On Tap was running) and when we met in person for the first time we talked for hours. There was the hallmark idealization and other long, long, long dates transpired between us because it was as though we couldn’t stop finding things to talk about.

He knew the intimate details about a handyman in an apartment building where I lived who stalked me by using a spare key to enter my apartment and go through my stuff when I wasn’t home and then finally intruding when they knew they would find me alone at 3AM.

It’s not as as if he has wiggle room on the motivation behind using stalking tactics as a post-breakup intimidation tactic. I don’t think he would actually engage with someone “in meat space” but I do think he is adept at using other resources to send the message that he controls the terms of the engagement. That message is scary.

Whichever way you look at it, it was neither safe, sane, nor consensual in anyway that he obscured a romantic relationship to make a claim under false pretenses that their activism caused an unknown party host to ban them and  that need someone to go “watch the party” for social justice to prevail.  Having sex with someone and developing a hot and fast relationship with them that turned into a nasty fight (this individual was very angry at me for criticizing their vocal problems with sex workers when I myself am a sex worker), and then seeing that they had someone attend your party in secret and then detail a sex act that they demonstrated at a party is not a very good feeling at all. This will make the hairs on the back of your neck stick right up regardless of whether or not you’ve been stalked in the past.

This behavior is abusive. It made me feel that at any event, I could be watched by a former partner who will use anything they see to smear me online.

I think the fact that this individual must maintain total control of all communication and terms of engagement is also indicative of this. Despite the fact that he employed post-breakup intimidation tactics by following and reporting my actions at a sex party on his blog, he also immediately commanded the reigns of how my online confrontation would go. He dictated “game-on” and then “game-off” at the end—and established that he was in control of how communication would work once again at the end.

If he had not intended to scare the ever living shit out of me and was concerned about what his actions “unintentionally” caused, his reaction would probably have been different. If I got lost in my own world of activism and lost track of reality, I would feel horrible that my actions caused them to feel stalked. In fact, after ending the conversation when I finally had the courage to directly state the most disturbing thing he’s done to me and he immediately shut it down, he solicited for hugs and support.

I should add that this individual has me (and roughly five million other people) blocked on Twitter but he monitors use of his name, via search, continuously and anyone putting an “@maymaym” on Twitter will get his attention. I had to have his mentions on a search function in order to communicated with him during this conversation and I got to watch a series of people immediately applaud him for his hard work as an “activist.”

So in other words, someone employed stalking tactics after our romantic engagement ended and they were heralded for having done so.

This is why I certainly didn’t rush to confront him. It’s incredibly disheartening to realize that someone can do an exceptionally fucked up thing to you in real life that is profoundly scary when you have experienced stalking and you remain in a high risk demographic for violence in that form. This is something I have to think about all the time.This individual is a master of manipulation who will emotionally blackmail partners that upset him by smearing them online.

I’m someone who has led consent projects and yet I remember speaking at a conference this spring that he was not officially linked to as staff, speaker, volunteer, or registered attendee. However, he made arguments for himself to be present and was granted permission to hang out in the lobby to network but not to attend sessions. I remember thinking, I know the organizers of this conference. If I just go and talk to them and tell them that I don’t feel comfortable in the lobby when someone who has employed stalking tactics against me is sitting there and glaring, I’m sure they’ll ask him to leave. I’m sure of it. I’ll go talk to them right now…

But I didn’t because I got the idea that if I were strong, confident, speaker who was certain of myself and my work and my message, I wouldn’t be bothered by the fact he is insisting on being there. I didn’t even think he was there for me, I believe 100% he was sitting in the lobby because he felt entitled to be in the space and would throw a tantrum if he told he was not entitled to be in the space.

So here I go explaining what happened so primarily so that we can get away from debating the ins and outs of his techno-hex on Fetlife and whether or not it was hacking or not and provide a hard and fast reason why he is not safe at events. If we play his game of manipulation and keep the conversation where he wants it to remain, his long trail of behavior with partners won’t come up. I can say this: I am not alone in being the recipient of this kind of negative attention from him.

Note, I’m not calling him a “stalker” but I am stating that he was willing to employ stalking tactics on a former lover he knew goddamn well had been a stalking victim. He has quite a few other intimidation tactics he uses to shut people up and remain in control of a conversation or personal engagement. He has demonstrated that he would have no problem outing anyone. He is not an individual who cares about the safety of those around him and whether or not he will act out with physical aggression does not mean he doesn’t act out on aggression.

He is not afraid to use his real name, he promotes himself as a threat to his perceived enemies, and his behavior is escalating in size and scope. All of these are tremendous red flags and those familiar with other patterns of abusive behavior probably spotted dozens more in this entry alone. At best, it’s bullying. Bullying is still a form of abusive behavior. The only way to curb this is with direct confrontation because if all he gets is affirmation for using bullying tactics, stalking tactics, and other forms of intimidation he will continue.

EDITED TO ADD:

San Francisco hosts numerous sex parties on any given night. If Maymay had in fact been doing a good faith project on sex party culture, why fixate on the party hosted by an ex?

If this had been an honest mistake, then why continually harass the subject and their friends online for not supporting the project that harassed and intimidated me?

If this was still a mixup, then why the belief that they could unblock me, make a tweet of apology, and then go on without going through a process of accountability or meeting me on my terms? Less than an apology, it appears to be an alibi. They “technically” said the words but did not email, did not discuss the harm, and did not meet me in any capacity.

Moreover, there are other instances of harassment as included here: (Note: Maymay not identifies as ‘they/them’ but did not at the time of this posting)

When a Kink.com performer talked about her sexual assault, he was busy tweeting away. Apparently he had more important things to do than listen.
http://loriadorable.tumblr.com/post/29070085704/maybe-days-case-study-using-block-features-are-an#notes

God forbid anyone criticizing him for being a less than excellent ally. When a small time Tumblr blogger had the temerity to criticize him, he used his considerably larger platform to harass her.
http://days.maybemaimed.com/post/28948348736/me-giving-thoughts-while-navigating-maymays-tumblr
http://poisonsoup.tumblr.com/post/29062523192/maybe-days-case-study-using-block-features-are-an

Also, he’s given a platform to a prominent Men’s Rights Activist.
http://days.maybemaimed.com/post/14953332062/feminism-and-the-disposable-male-by

And here’s a video where mansplains to a female sex worker and consent activist how to talk about sex work.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L__E7eQKquQ&feature=youtube_gdata_player

That being said, I think the tool is interesting. But I really think Yes Means Yes should not have given Maymay a platform/implicit endorsement. There are very legitimate reasons why people in consent activist circles don’t like him. And it’s not because he’s just super edgy. It’s because he’s the kind of white cis male activist who hurts movements.
http://inciteblog.wordpress.com/2010/07/15/why-misogynists-make-great-informants-how-gender-violence-on-the-left-enables-state-violence-in-radical-movements/

Also, here are a string of 16 tweets where Maymay tells people who disagree with them to commit suicide. These are linked so as not to trigger those with suicidal ideation right now.

One of the things that makes Maymay dangerous is their belief that they get to decide what the emotional reality of those around them is or should be. Abusers don’t go out saying, “TODAY I SHALL ABUSE!” they go out thinking, “I’m right! And I’ll show them!” and they use the means available to them.

10 Comments

Filed under About me, behind the scenes

10 responses to “On Confrontation

  1. Holy cow. I’m so sorry you are dealing with this.

    However, talking about what happened to you is not “drama” – and even if it were, so what? Your experience is still your experience, and besides, sometimes it *takes* some drama to a) make a point, b) effect needed changes, or c) protect others.

    Drama is what other people call what you are talking about when they don’t like what you’re saying, it doesn’t interest them, or perhaps if it impacts them and they don’t like being busted, or they don’t like what would result.

    If the Suffragettes were operating today, I’m sure they would be labeled drama-mongers.

    BTW, Maymay would be more believable if he were only painting one person with a negative brush, but he’s so global in his condemnation of anyone associated with the scene that I’m sure there are a lot of people who don’t take his blather seriously. He greatly undermined his credibility with me as he started to escalate and to paint with broader and broader strokes.

    As to his name, heh, I actually once saw him bitch online about someone using his full real name in a kink context as if they were outting him. As if he hadn’t already thoroughly linked it quite obviously and inextricably to his kink persona and writings.

  2. SomeFetlifeRubberneckerOrOther

    That boy ain’t right.

    • Jason

      Unfortunately, I suspect this is it. He seems to be spiraling through increasingly erratic, semi-reckless behavior. I did dumb shit and hurt people while deep in depression. Luckily, I had medical and mental support. He doesn’t have the former (afaik) and pushes away hopes of the latter. I feel badly for him and those he hurts as I stay away and don’t even try to help. I’m afraid of falling back into that pit myself.

  3. gotta agree with above commentator, something is not right in his head… keep the faith and try as much as possible to be yourself while ignoring this idiot…

  4. Jon

    I think you did the right thing calling out the nature of your relationship with him – it is the honest thing to do in the interest of full disclosure. To do so otherwise would be deceptive and dishonest.

    I remember that night and that ugly fight, and what struck me most about what he said that night were his absolute cowardice and insiduous dishonesty. He first outright refused a few times to confirm for me whether he had made very vocal and public statements criticizing all sex workers in general based on his personal experiences with a few he had known. Then he dodged more than a few times the question of whether he still felt that way about sex workers in general. Though he eventually (but barely) conceded that he no longer felt quite so critical about sex workers in general and that his strongly critical judgement was only about his own personal experiences with particular persons, he stated that he felt it unnecessary to say anything or write anything about any change of opinion.

    So, it was okay and appropriate to write critically and vocally about sex workers, essentially demonizing them, but despite claiming to have had a change of heart on the subject, he felt it unnecessary to publicly indicate any change in opinion. Either he’d rather people see only his vitriol – which to me implies no actual change of opinion on his part – or he’s too prideful to ever admit publicly that perhaps his vitriol was unwarranted OR both. Dishonesty or Cowardice OR Both.

    I said it on twitter and I have no problem saying it here too – he reads like a textbook example out of a Gavin de Becker book, specifically The Gift of Fear. I can’t call him a psycho/sociopath, at least not legitimately – I don’t have the formal background to do so – but wow, when I read any list of classical characteristics of that or ASPD, so many apply to him, and I am reminded of cult leaders, the tactics of Large Group Awareness organizations, and New Age Gurus left and right – all Charlatans to me.

    • Especially because he amped it up after that fight and has continued to do so reveals a committment to something other than truth and inquiry on his part. I’m sorry you had to see it, I really didn’t think it was going to blow up. At least I’m not alone in my observations.

  5. Pingback: 2012 | Maggie Mayhem Speaks

  6. Sally

    Maggie,
    I am not 100% sure but after looking at his picture, I am 80% sure this is the same man who got angry at me at a tantra workshop about 5 years ago for not agreeing to have sex with him. First he asked casually, like it was a joke but when I politely and nervously to be honest, said “no”, he went from being polite to being insulted only to act has though I was completely out of line because I said “no” to him. This was during the lunch break and then he asked me again in the next break with the same response. It was bizarre. Even if this isn’t the same guy, I am so sorry you had to go through that but I commend you on how you handled it. You stood up for yourself, refused to fall into shame (something I consistently LOVE about your work with sexuality. LOVE that!! :), stood your ground and moved on. If this is the same guy, he is intelligent and interesting at first and then devolves into predatory and passive aggressive- and in my experience that was all in the space of a one day workshop! Thank you for writing about this. – Sally

  7. Quill

    Thank you for saying something about this. Maymay’s response on his blog, more than anything, has really convinced me that this guy is not a guy I want anything to do with, not a guy who is on my side, and not a guy who is sufficiently concerned with the safety or consent of others.

  8. Pingback: Here’s where “Maymay is a stalker” probably comes from « Maybe Maimed but Never Harmed

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