Whips and chains: It's all fun and games until somebody gets hurt.
In a real life "Fifty Shades of Grey" scenario, a kinky sex slave relationship between a young woman and her CEO lover has ended in charges of stalking, criminal mischief and aggravated harassment.
According to the New York Post, 27-year-old Frankie Santiago, known as Althea Lyn within New York City's S&M scene, submitted to daily whippings from 53-year-old Edward Sonderling, the owner of Priority Investors LLC. The pair, who are both well-known bondage enthusiasts, shared Sonderling's East 57th Street apartment for about three years, where their sexual escapades were a daily occurrence.
That is, until Santiago discovered that Sonderling had recruited a new apprentice to replace her. In a role reversal, Santiago took charge of the situation, canceling airline reservations she discovered Sonderling made for himself and his new lover, and sending him more than 40 text messages over a 12-day period.
"If I ever see you with her I will not hold back. I have nothing to lose," Santiago reportedly said in one text. "I hope she has a disease you catch."
Sonderling, who posts photos of his fetish-themed vacations on a MySpace page under the name King Eddo, was confronted by Santiago with a knife at his home on July 29, according to the Post. She is also accused of kicking out the front window of his car.
She was arrested Monday after another heated argument between the two and arraigned yesterday on charges of on charges of stalking, criminal mischief and aggravated harassment.
Though the mainstream perception of BDSM (bondage, dominance, sadism, masochism) and S&M (sadomasochism) is a sexual free-for-all, those who practice the fetishes told Metro there are plenty of monogamous relationships within these sex-based communities.
"People fail to realize that BDSM is just a microcosm of the population as a whole," Guy Sanders, spokesperson for the of the Eulenspiegel Society, a BDSM education and support group in NYC, told Metro. "We still have same issues as any other relationship. We try to be more expressive about it to avoid this type of thing, but we are human."
Other BDSM enthusiasts said the couple's kinky sex life is the only reason this story interests the media, blaming its "Fifty Shades of Grey" similarities for the curiosity.
"[Fifty Shades] has been wonderful publicity for the BDSM community," Susan Wright from the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom said. "I'm hoping it will prevent stories like this in the future, that it will become tolerated that people have kinky elements to their sexual relationships."
BDSM and S&M relationships can be monogamous or polyamorous, meaning couples either swing together, one or both partners maintains outside sexual relationships with other people, or both partners share other lovers. While the arrangement between Santiago and Sonderling is unclear, community insiders said BDSM-based relationships are not immune to jealousy and messy breakups.
"He did something behind her back, she found out," Mazie, a Staten Island-based community member who preferred not to give her last name, told Metro. "I don’t see any difference between the vanilla community and this community in terms of what people are looking for, or in terms of whether or not you’re stable. It doesn’t make people more passionate either."
(Photo via MySpace)