Woman Wants Out of Her Slave/Master Marriage

Illustration for article titled Woman Wants Out of Her Slave/Master Marriage

After signing an explicit agreement that she would become her husband's "slave," a saleswoman in Padua is suing for divorce, claiming that her partner physically abused her during their marriage and that he's stalked her since their split. Insert your obligatory Fifty Shades life imitates art imitates porn imitates a waking nightmare universe where E.L. James is graciously requesting that her Nobel Prize for literature be affixed to a black leather strap and used to choke her in front of a titillated audience.


According to the Telegraph, the couple celebrated their very specific slave/master nuptials in 2006. The marriage contract specified that the woman would refer to her husband (who was ten years her senior) as "padrone" or master, and further stipulated that "the slave agrees to obey and to offer herself for the satisfaction of the desires of her master." Though the woman was to "place her body at her master's disposition, to be used at his pleasure," the contract made exceptions for "coprophilia, bestiality, asphyxia/restriction of breathing, branding by fire, any activities involving weapons and any acts in general which could permanently mark her physically." Otherwise, anything was apparently fair game and, if the woman refused to keep to the agreement, certain vague and creepy-sounding "punishments" would be in order.

Since the divorce case is currently before the courts, the couple has remained unnamed, but basically what the slow-cogs of Italian justice are trying to figure out is whether the woman simply tired of the arrangement she agreed to ten years ago (when she was just 24), or her partner violated the contract himself by physically abusing her in a way that the couple had not previously agreed on. Observers have drawn parallels to Fifty Shades, obviously, but also to The Story of O, which is a dirty, dirty book about a Parisian photographer who lets herself be blindfolded, tied-up and whipped. People change A LOT in ten years, so it seems plausible that this sadomasochistic arrangement started to become a little less exciting and a lot more abusive over the course of the marriage. Signing a piece of paper still doesn't give someone carte blanche to abuse a partner (or anyone, for that matter), it just probably makes it way harder to ensure that an abusive partner faces justice.

Italian woman sues husband for seven years of ‘slavery' [Telegraph]

Image via Gunnar Pippel/Shutterstock.</small



I have to imagine, if you're one of those people who is in a BDSM or Dom/Sub relationship and actually has a healthy interest in the wellbeing of your partner, stories like this must make you mental. Everyone goes "Aha, see, they're all cruel abusive deviants", when it's my understanding that this (and what I've read of 50 Shades, incidentally) is exactly the opposite of a HEALTHY BDSM/whatever relationship with two consenting, loving adults.

My aunt once got involved with a guy who wanted to be called Master Kaius or something, and was involved in an elaborate online roleplaying community that centered around these old fantasy/sci-fi books called... Gor? They were about this race of barbarian men who would kidnap women from our planet and take them as slaves, which was apparently sexy and romantic I guess because they wore jeweled collars or something. I never read the books myself. Anyway, she initially was pretty flattered by all his attention, but then he started wanting her to move with him (they'd never actually met in person) and only wear these specific skimpy clothes and was having a freaking collar designed for her and she chickened out. My aunt leads an interesting life.