MEMBER ARTICLE: Jinx’s experience of the fetish community
31 August 2020
Recon member jinxz talks about his experience of getting a start on the scene and highlights why representation and visibility of POC matters
Hello, my name is Matthew, but I'm known by my other name, jinx. I'm an 18-year-old multiracial man who's been trying to make a difference in the online community since 2018.
Back in 2018 I realized I had a fetish for leather and rubber but didn't know how to express myself. When I was a sophomore in high school, I messaged several leather men for advice on how to get involved in the community, but none of them responded, besides one man who's actually my good friend to this day.
Since I couldn't do anything at the time, besides look up leather men on google, I decided to make an Instagram account, now called @jinxs_leather, to interact with other fetish men and get my feet wet in the community.
I remember trying to make friends and learn new things from these men, and almost all of them were really exclusive and racist to me. They went as far as calling me racial slurs, lying on me to others, saying I was a freak and telling me that, since I was black and young, I'd never have a future as a successful fetish man. As I didn't see a lot of People like me in the scene at the time, it greatly affected how I saw myself for a while. I thought something was wrong with me and I ended up more damaged than I was before.
I almost left the community, until I found my leather dads Stevio and Marc online. I met Stevio back in 2018 when he was talking about Muir caps on Instagram, and I was hooked to what he was doing ever since. My leather dad Marc, I met while he was reviewing a pair of Sendra boots on Instagram as well, and I remember he was very fatherly to me, which reminded me of Stevio.
I officially wanted them both to mentor me, or in other words, be like my dads in the community; men I could learn from and who could be my support system when I needed it.
They both taught me so much about the community and helped me learn to love myself. They essentially gave me a reason to continue on. They have also helped me with my communication issues and self-doubt.
I learned that the online community is only a portion of my journey, and that it's not the whole experience, but for me, since I live in a country where there aren't any leather events available to people my age, the internet is all I have.
I've always wanted to make a difference and to be an example to other black men in the community, so in late November 2019 I finally realized I wasn't having fun, and I wasn't being the influencer/example I wanted to be to other young black men. So, when I made my new account, after I lost my original one, my goal became to help change the community, so that others would not have bad experiences such as the ones I had.
Now as an 18-year-old man, I've done way more than I've ever imagined, and I've made some amazing friends that I can call family. I'll continue to keep educating people and helping fix the issues of our community, so we can enjoy it together and not in small groups. Hopefully through time, the racism, fetishizing a ethnicity, body shaming, trans shaming and fem shaming can finally be put to rest in the community and in the world.
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