In my mentoring piece a few days back, a conversation on FetLife went THERE. To the “can sex be traded for mentoring” place.
And I, knowing it’s a hot-button topic put my waders on and said, “Yes, absolutely.”
I also went on to discuss that there are a lot of things that can go wrong, and the people who require that or the people who are being asked to give that should do a lot of soul searching and be very aware going into that agreement.
I also said that to say that is never good is to take agency away from people and their own bodies and lives, and to invalidate sex workers who choose to trade sex for many things: money, access, mentoring, car repair—whatever.
So, then the questions were asked:
I know it’s frequently stated roun’ these parts that relationships are best conducted as close to egalitarian as possible, and I don’t necessarily disagree with that, but how can they work out if there’s a decent amount of disparity there?
So, in this case, how could a teacher most ethically navigate a sexual relationship with a student?
Both touch on something that I think is pretty key:
equality versus parity
Your language seems to focus on equality. I focus more on parity.
equality: the fact of being equal
parity: comparability of strength or intensity
So, equality is almost non-existent in it’s purest form.
However, parity is everywhere.
I cannot EQUAL my partner in pure physical strength. He (says he) cannot equal my mind.
We BOTH look up to, respect, and love each other for what we are.
Our strength of regard and intensity is equal. Our specific experiences, knowledge, skills, and physical forms are greatly unequal.
THAT’S What matters to me.
What are your thoughts?
Do you see a significant difference between equality and parity as suggested here? Do you experience parity in your D/s or power exchange relationships? What about in your other relationships, with friends or others?
What did I get wrong?