mutually assured destruction based relationships are my #1 hard limit

Mutually assured destruction (MAD) is a doctrine of military strategy and national security policy in which a full-scale use of nuclear weapons by two or more opposing sides would cause the complete annihilation of both the attacker and the defender (see pre-emptive nuclear strike and second strike).[1] It is based on the theory of deterrence, which holds that the threat of using strong weapons against the enemy prevents the enemy’s use of those same weapons. The strategy is a form of Nash equilibrium in which, once armed, neither side has any incentive to initiate a conflict or to disarm.

From Wikipedia’s entry on Mutual Assured Destruction

I don’t do mutual assured destruction.

A.K.A. “I won’t do something that I want, if you ALSO don’t do that same thing that you want. Because then we BOTH get to not get what we want. But if either of us do the thing that we both want– but promised not to do– than the relationship is over. Agreed? Agreed.”

Long before I discovered kink and explicit consent, I held this standard as core to my belief system. You see, I don’t care what you do. It doesn’t bother me what you like. As long as what you want and what you do does not harm anyone else (no, I will not tolerate that, either), you can do as you please.

Call yourself whichever label you want. You want me to call you “she/her,” regardless of what lies beneath your clothes? Why should I care? What business is it of mine? And, hey, your kink is your kink. If you like those kind of relationships? If they make you feel safe? Cool. I just want no part of it.

I won’t do any of this:

“So I won’t date girls, if you don’t date boys.”

“Okay, cool.”

“So then, neither of us will. Because, you know, if you do show interest in other girls, than I will let myself fool around with other boys, and then the relationship is obviously, well, poof!”

Right? That’s how MAD works. I won’t launch my nukes, because then you’d launch your nukes. And then, obviously, the world explodes.

Worse, sometimes it gets outright malicious. Time and time again, I’ve seen people who genuinely thought that it was okay to hurt someone else, because, after all, the person was hurting them. And that it was just cool to be in a destructive relationship like that, because it was MUTUAL destruction. So, you know, it’s fair and all. And it was, like, this fun game to play. How to both hurt each other in such a way that it kept up the game, but it didn’t totally destroy the other (you don’t actually want to put the other player out of them game, or the game is over.)

But, honestly, I just don’t want to bother.

Unless I’m your mother, and even then there are limits, I don’t get to tell you what to do. I don’t even want to tell you what to do. It’s not my kink. I don’t feel all warm and fuzzy from you loving me “soooooo much” that you’ll sacrifice potential happiness for my sake. It makes me feel sad and gross. If you cannot respect yourself enough to stand up for your personal desires, why should I respect you? And if I can’t respect you, I can’t trust you. And if I can’t trust you, we have no relationship.

So, whatever. If you simply don’t want to date other people, cool. Only date your partner or me or whomever. But if you’re into the whole concept of “It’s okay for me to tell you what to do, as long as you get to tell me what to do,” well, kindly scurry off and find someone else to date.

It’s not going to be me.

4 thoughts on “mutually assured destruction based relationships are my #1 hard limit”

  1. Interesting. For me it’s hard to believe anyone would want a MAD relationship, though I know anything’s possible with us humans. Now, I’m no genius when it comes to us humans. Me? I’d propose MAPP instead…mutually assure peer-based partnership, or positivity.

    1. I know, right? And yet it is so common. “Well, I won’t look at other women, if you won’t look at other men.” “I won’t go out, if YOU don’t go out. We’ll just BOTH be equally unhappy. That’s called a balanced relationship.”

      Why do we persist in that? I much prefer your relationship style!

  2. I don’t know is this relates to the MAD concept, but it sure is an all-or-nothing concept. We catch flak from others for allowing each other the “veto”. It seems they’re of the opinion “Nobody’s got the right to tell me who I can date”

    We disagree, for 3 reasons…and “veto” as all-or-nothing control isn’t how we operate.

    First, we believe that anytime a person’s ability to say no is impaired, then consent is impaired as well.

    Secondly, while we don’t dictate the degree that our paramours engage with their metamours (I use these terms as lingua franca…we don’t actually practice hierarchy), we encourage relationships that go beyond “kitchen table”. It’s not sexual. It’s the concept of extended family. So, partnerships that are healthy not just individually but communally are our ideal.

    That being said, we’ve built genuine trust that assures us each partner is genuinely interested in the health and welfare of the other. As I said it’s not “veto”. It’s agreed that if either of us sees something in someone, or developing in a partnership, that is unhealthy, harmful, etc. they have not only the freedom, but the responsibility to communicate the concerns. We then engage in frank discussion focused on being proactive about maintaining healthy relations within our whole “community”. We find an added benefit of this is reduction of the insecurities that lead to jealousy, feeling deprioritized or left out, and other sorts of negatives, while increasing our individual senses of compression.

    As for looking at other women or men? Always find a partner who will look at asses with you!! 🙂

    1. Hmmmmm, I’m slightly confused as to whether or not you actually practice a “veto.” That being said, while I think it’s healthy to bring up concerns, I absolutely do not allow someone to tell me “no,” when it comes to dating a person. Especially if it’s broad swaths, i.e. you can’t date trans/non binary/males/my partners. You can consent to whether or not you continue to dating ME, of course, but not dictate who I date.

      This is no way means you must date in the same fashion as I do.

      Also, for what it’s worth, I often do meet someone and then ask my partners/close friends for their opinion. Should I keep dating them, should I not, am I missing red flags? I like their input. But once they’ve said their piece, it is still up to me. And if they encourage the relationship? And I go ahead with it? They don’t get to then say, “Hey, I don’t like this other person after all, you have to break up with them.” Nope. Once the relationship is established, you don’t then to get change your mind.

      This does seem to have resonated with you, however, and I’d completely love to keep discussing this with you! Probably on a platform that allows for easier communication.

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