Tragically, in what is going to be a sensationalist story for the press, Elaine O’Hara, a vulnerable woman with mental health issues was killed in Ireland in 2012. With the trial under way details are now emerging and amongst those details it has become clear that she was involved in the Gorean lifestyle and such salacious detail is bound to grab media attention and draw a sneering eye to the BDSM community in general and Gorean lifestylers and roleplayers in particular.
I have it on good authority that this woman was known to be vulnerable and the actual BDSM community had been acting responsibly in relation to her. Unfortunately that appears to be part of the reason she ended up in trouble, looking beyond the community to be fulfilled and falling afoul of someone unhinged.
This is, of course, nothing to do with the Gorean or BDSM communities, there are psychos everywhere and they’re no more likely to turn up in relation to kink than anything else. Indeed some studies suggest that kinksters are more stable psychologically than those who are not.
Needless to say, I take the side of the Gorean and kink communities in the face of another shitstorm.
Mental health issues are also hugely important to me and it’s clear that this poor woman wasn’t getting all the help she needed. I would take this opportunity to appeal to everyone to support mental health provision and the extension of nationalised healthcare, in every country, to provide more mental healthcare.
My thoughts are with Ms O’Hara’s family at this difficult time and I hope people will not fixate too much on salacious detail or use this trial to attack kinksters.