Hypno Safety Kit: Mailbag(Nyeogmi; 2162 words)

A lot of people read Hypno Safety Kit! I’m happy about that.

Many of the people who read it responded with criticism. A lot of that criticism led to immediate changes in the article.

There are a few lines of criticism that I keep receiving, but because I disagree with them, I don’t want to change the article. I still think readers should see them.

“Hypnofurs isn’t that bad.”

A friend of mine was abused by a Hypnofurs regular. A Hypnofurs moderator was literally in the room and acknowledged, in DMs, that it was abuse.

Later, I spoke to a former Hypnofurs mod who said he still knew the mod team and would relay my thoughts to them if I wanted. He said I would need video evidence for them to start investigating it, that it would likely take months for them to get around to doing so, and that the abuser and victim would be pulled into a room and expected to deliver their respective sides of the story.

In the meantime, the moderator who was in the room outright denied the abuse to other folks who were curious about it. He implied the victim was crazy.

It seems to me that they have a “fifteen strikes, you’re still not out” policy on abuse. I literally think it would be better to go literally nowhere than to go to Hypnofurs.

(Because this question keeps coming up — the events happened in a private chatroom, but the mod and abuser involved are both active members of the Hypnofurs playroom.)

“Paimon Prowler isn’t that bad.”

Everyone I know who did play with him eventually got abused in horrific ways, with the exception of one person who he lost interest in and ghosted.

Here are the last two threads I made about Pai, in lieu of a real beware. You can read the comments and judge for yourself:

Conversion therapy and claiming are legitimate playtypes. Why did you label them “abuse methods?”

OK, so I think there’s roughly three levels of kink danger: play, edgeplay, and suicide kink. Respectively, they’re about as dangerous as go-karts, skydiving, and skydiving without a parachute:

  • play: you won’t get hurt if you follow the rules, the rules aren’t that difficult to follow
  • edgeplay: there are inherent serious risks, but the risks aren’t the point of the play
  • suicide kink: the literal point is to get hurt, and bonus points if you’re out of commission permanently

I’d say that claiming is roughly “edgeplay” — conversion therapy and long-term droneplay are suicide kink.

Importantly, this really isn’t some kind of post-facto justification based how gross the things are. You’ll notice that I don’t even mention the archetypally gross kinks (scat, piss, stench, etc) in my first post.

For some reason, edgeplay guys like telling play guys “hey, your play has inherent risks, our play has inherent risks, they’re practically the same.” This encourages horny fuckers who were previously contenting themselves with relatively safe play to go “fine, fuck it, I’m gonna jump out of an airplane.”

And for some reason, suicide kink guys — whose play is IMHO inherently abusive — love to muscle in on this conversation and say “hey, our play is just like skydiving, which, as we’ve established, is just like go-karts.”

Bystanders join this conversation who don’t reveal their kink power level and say “well, hmm, if people informedly consent to it, I don’t see what the big problem is,” ignoring that you can’t consent to stuff that’s in the same category as an eating disorder.

If you’re just looking for a thing to nail me to the wall for, I think a lot of people use the phrase “informed consent” as a magic incantation to say “don’t look at the deeply pathological thing I’m doing.” Then they go around to people who hadn’t considered this stuff and start recruiting.

Look at all the doms who claim and collar all their subs, with permission, regardless of whether that’s what the subs are horny for. At that point it’s just table stakes to do play at all. If people “informedly” consent to claiming because they literally won’t get dommed if they don’t, that’s not consent any more.

Consider that claiming is one of the most common playtypes, but subs almost never ask for it, especially not with doms they aren’t close to. What should you take this to mean? That a lot of people are saying “yes” to a thing they are, at best, indifferent to.

Does that make this play inherently abusive? Maybe not. But it does mean that even asking for this kind of play has a high chance of leading the sub to agree to something that in their hearts, they don’t consent to. That is, on the face of it, a good reason to presume that someone who’s doing this kind of play is abusive.

As for conversion therapy —

I ran a survey on Twitter to determine if anyone wanted it, and everyone said they didn’t. The few “yes”es were all from people who liked it as a fantasy or who liked short-term personality play, nothing else.

There’s a good bet no one wants this.

Is “harem” the word?

Some harems, like I said, aren’t abusive. Some abusive playgroups aren’t harems.

One person said I should use the word “cult” instead of “harem,” because it captures the dynamic I want. I kinda disagree — nobody’s gonna call it a “cult” if they haven’t seen the bad stuff yet, and the whole point of my guide is to make identifications easy for people who haven’t seen the bad stuff.

“Harem,” on the other hand, is a roughly neutral description for the play environment I’m talking about. I could switch words, but I don’t currently intend to.

“How do I remove [specific suggestion]? I don’t think your program will work.”

One person messaged me who was holding onto specific suggestions he didn’t like. He didn’t think my thing would work. Earlier a friend of his had tried removing a trigger of his and instead of allowing that, he became upset and abreacted hard.

The trigger was a malfunctioning safety that came with the following suggestions:

  • No one but you can remove this.
  • Removing this will make you panic.
  • You’re bad and reckless, so you need this safety.

(The general word for this sort of “don’t remove me” suggestion is “hypnotic lock.” There’s a book on them on Amazon, but I’ve read other stuff by the same author and I think he’s a grifter, so I’m not planning on buying it.)

From what I can tell, he consented to the trigger in the first place because the dom was super overbearing and had a laundry list of “cases you got abused in the first place.”

He seemed more prone than average to responding to “no one can remove this”-type suggestions because he appeared to think “hypnosis being as strong as possible” was hot, including the idea of having suggestions that can’t be removed. He kinda seemed to have the strong impression he wasn’t really in control of his own head.

The idea that hypno is so strong you can’t remove it even by wanting to is a thing some abusers cultivate: Nimja used to have a reputation for doing this with his victims.

“Removing this will make you panic” and “you’re bad and reckless, so you need this” are two suggestions I could see an abuse victim accepting. even though it’s bad.

I removed the suggestion by:

  • doing a permissive induction based on the idea of being totally connected to the unconscious source of his emotions/location of memories
  • explaining triggers are enforced by him, and that thinky triggers need his participation to take place
  • distinguishing emotions originated by him from emotions originated by outside, and saying that emotions originated by outside don’t take place inside his head
  • bringing him out every time he panicked anyway, then waiting for permission to put him back under
  • promising not to remove the safety
  • talking him through why being told under hypnosis that he’s bad and reckless is not really appropriate, and gaining agreement that he might not think those things about himself if he hadn’t been hypnotized
  • explaining that most aspects of this trigger are inconsistent with the idea of a “safety” and that if he needed a safety, he could get a better one
  • telling him to go down again, but this time he would observe the panic before it happened and let his rational feelings decide whether a panic would actually take place
  • telling him that he would remove the suggestion, not me, and only if the waking version of him was comfortable with it
  • doing basically my ordinary routine as described in the other article

This should probably be taken to mean that an abusive dom who you trust may have a depressing level of success fucking you up in the long term.

The fact that it was nontrivial doesn’t make me happy, because usually even triggers that are guarded with this stuff are easy to remove and with this guy it took about an hour and some fairly involved steps. It probably would have been even worse if he had been told no one could remove it, especially since the guy seemed to have the strong impression he wasn’t really in control of his own head.

I still don’t think non-removable suggestions are a thing, though.

“But ceasing tulpa play is murder.”

Getting this out of the way, I’m a big believer in plural phenomena — it’s really easy to elicit plural-like behavior in a hypno session.

Furries tend to have more than one character — let’s say I’m sessioning with Zack, who’s a human whose OC, York, is a southern flying squirrel. If I say “hey York, what do you think?” I’ll likely get an answer from York. York will show limited awareness of the things Zack knows, if that’s appropriate, and I can tell Zack a secret without York recognizing it.

I think people’s expression of plural phenomena changes a lot kinda without notice — people have conversations in their heads all the time, and it’s not like something dies when the convo ends.

I don’t really have all the answers on plural stuff, but this is my mental model.

So, as for the claim itself. A lot of people say this stuff, and as far as I can tell they got this take from engaging with the tulpa community.

This isn’t an issue I’m personally knowledgable about, but I have a friend who was at tulpa community ground zero. What he told me a while ago is that the modern tulpa community, as far as he can tell, basically emerged from stuff that one highly abusive hypnodom in the MLP community was doing.

One of her major methods of control was saying that if you didn’t do hypno exactly right, really terrible things would happen. For instance, she said that it was extremely dangerous to do two hypnosis sessions consecutively with conflicting suggestions — say, being transformed into two different ponies.

There’s a cottage industry in Weird Internet Rituals that supposedly have dramatic, awful effects if you get them wrong. For instance, there’s a kids’ guided meditation party game called Red Door, Yellow Door. The idea is that you’re hypnotized, you navigate a maze of doors, and see objects which you describe to everyone else.

There’s this idea that entered the mythology that there’s a mysterious man in a suit who you might encounter, and if you run into the dude he’ll fuck you up, and unsurprisingly, once people started posting about that on Reddit, folks started seeing the dude and getting fucked up.

I strongly suspect that “killing tulpas is murder” is a meme propagated in a similar way. The idea of a second personality saying “please don’t kill me” is extremely compelling.

I think that plural people (including tulpa practitioners) may have alters, but nothing actually dies if those alters go away or are expressed differently. If you have a strong opinion on either side of the issue, you should probably try to think of where that came from.

And this is basically what I said to a lot of tulpa people. I got a lot of responses back that implied these were issues the plural community should be trusted on.

I think folks should keep in mind that “the plural community” is just a bunch of random people on the internet, same as me! You should trust them based on the strength of their argumentation, and with awareness that frightening memes catch on like wildfire.

If you can’t be shaken from the belief that ceasing tulpa play is murder, then I’ve only got one option for you: you need to classify everyone who’s promoting tulpa play as an abuser. If you take that claim at face value, they’re putting people into play situations that, for moral reasons, they can never leave. You can’t get more abusive than that.

(And they’re often doing this with teenagers or literally “any rando who should happen to find this page I wrote.”)

I think it’s pretty fucked up, personally.