A Pup Bill of Rights
There are a few Pup Bill of Rights articles on the net. Siriuspupnet has comprehensively explored a set of "rights" and "ethics", and we present the "rights" here as a very simple list. A very key difference with our list and others is that these rights don't need to be granted by your master, they should be asserted by you pup.
You are responsible for your rights.
As a Sirius Pup you need to make sure that you participate in the pack in a healthy manner. Asserting your rights is of course done with consideration of others. So keep in mind when reading each and every one of these "rights" that you don't behave like a dickhead; that asserting yourself is done in a calm and reasoned manner. Few masters simply smile and agree when confronted by a hysterical raving pup claiming he has been treated badly, so express your rights definitely, but sensibly.
I will self identify that I could be showing cultural bias here. Australians are not fond of a culture of liability and suing for damages as we see in some other english speaking nations - yes USA, I am looking at you. It is a valid point to mention that, as I am showing my own cultural bias, for each person has a cultural bias from where they have grown up and developed. Each person, pup or trainer, has a personal bias based on their experience of life so far. Think critically and examine what is being explained below and let these rights be a guideline to asserting yourself better pup. Just keep to the golden rule and do your best to be kind and decent in how you assert them.
There is also another factor to consider when asserting your rights pup, and that is the urgency of your need to do so. When situations occur where you think you might need to assert your rights, pause and consider how intense your need to do so is. Take a moment to check if you are caught up in assumptions or anxious thinking. There is a healthy way to review first before asserting yourself, detailed here.
Your rights that you should be claiming when needed pup
1: You have a right to need things from others. That doesn't mean that your need will automatically be fulfilled, but you have needs as a pup and your Owner and Trainer and pack can try to fulfil them if they know what you need. Take some time to think about what you actually need, not simply want, from pup play. Then speak up and let others know.
2: You have a right to put yourself first sometimes. Although you will most likely be Owned as a pup, and in training, you cannot and should never put aside everything else in your life. You are a whole person and you must consider your future beyond simply the fun of being a pup now. There has to be times when you put your other priorities first. A healthy fulfilled life will mean that you will at times have family, friends, and work commitments. These do not come an automatic second at all times.
3: You have a right to feel and express your emotions. You should express and not repress yourself pup. Obviously you can share how you feel, but your Owner and Trainer may want to modify your exuberance. It's their job to watch your pup behaviour, and to help you behave responsibly wherever you are as a pup, without suppressing your expression of feeling. Just keep in mind that feelings and emotions can sometimes be anxious and unhealthy in their expression. You, and everyone else, should feel safe to express themselves in pup play so that means being considerate.
4: You have the right to be the final judge of your beliefs and accept them as legitimate. Deeper aspects of puphood can involve what it is to be human and behave as one. You can learn and understand the different points of view that will come to the fore of your mind, but you never have to forgo your beliefs or have them mocked. Other people will pass judgement on you, as a pup, as a person. Accept that fact and don't fret over it. Just because someone has made a judgement doesn't mean you have to agree with it, or fight it - even if it's your Owner and Trainer. Before you get caught up in a paradox here, it's very important to remember that you should do your best to listen to others and consider what they say. You can hear and acknowledge another's opinion, but you are responsible, solely you, for your own judgements. If you think negatively at times, or have a false idea on how things work in the world, it is up to you to change that. Being exposed to different points of view in pup play gives you an opportunity to examine and think about what beliefs you have and what works best for you. So be open and listen to others, especially your Owner and Trainer.
5: You have the right to your opinions and convictions. These are different to beliefs. You may believe that all people are equal, but actually have an opinion that stupid people are annoying and so you stick to your conviction that stupid people are best avoided. Be a good pup and listen to and consider others opinions as mentioned in rights number 4. You only have to consider opinions, as you are entitled to present yours and have them considered as well. You don't have to convince anyone to share your opinions and views either. What you think is what you think. It doesn't mean you are correct and right in what you think, but it is still yours to have. The same goes for others pup. You have to let them have their opinions even if they can't explain them to you properly and you remain unconvinced. At the end of the day everyone in the pack has to get along.
6: You have the right to your experience, even if it's different from other pups. This is especially relevant to you when mingling in the pup community. Never accept another person diminishing your experience pup, as it is as valid as anyone else's.
7: You have the right to protest any treatment or criticism that feels bad to you. Speak up pup if what you are experiencing is painful or distressing. There are definitely some pups and masters who seek hardcore BDSM play, and the idea of protesting treatment may seem counter intuitive. It is not. Although pain and pleasure are part of BDSM, you don't have to be in distress and fear and pain that you aren't enjoying or sought. The Collars training at Siriuspup is explained to you so that you have an idea of what will happen, but not so much information that it is boring and uneventful. Feeling confident going into a scene can make all the difference to your enjoyment of it, so speak up if you are afraid or nervous pup.
So you can see that so far, you have a right to have a life, have thoughts and feelings you call your own, and you can share them and they should be considered. It can be hard to remember this as you engage in obedience to your Owner and Trainer and try to find a place for yourself in the pup world. Be kind to yourself and to others as you assert your rights to be yourself as a human and a pup. Read on though pup...
8: You have a right to negotiate for change. By speaking up about what you want, your master and others in the pack can begin a dialogue with you about you getting what you need and want. Simply speaking up is not enough pup. You can go further by working with your master and other pups through sensible and calm discussion to change how things are for you.
9: You have a right to ask for help and emotional support. That doesn't mean you will always get it, or receive it in the manner you are asking for. What is vitally important here is that you ask for help and assistance. Your Owner and Trainer is there to enrich your life, not diminish it.
10: You have a right to say no, and saying no doesn't mean you are bad or selfish. If you don't want to do something, say no to it pup.
11: You have a right not to have to justify yourself to others. There will be times your Owner and Trainer will ask you to explain your thinking or reasoning. Of course you will be asked for feedback on lessons at the very least. You already know you have a right to an opinion, and it is perfectly possible to calmly and rationally explain your experience of something in pup play. You can tell your reasons for some behaviour you have pup which can then be heard and acknowledged.
12: You have a right not to take responsibility for someone else's problem. Each member of the pack should be sorting his own problems out. The pack works together to give support and care, but each pup has to ensure he doesn't burden unreasonably anyone else.
13: You have a right to choose not to respond to a situation. As scenes occur about and around you in pup play, you can and should choose which you wish to emotionally engage in or not. As explained here, each scene, every action in pup play, is yours to get something out of it. If you aren't getting something out of the moment, you can always step back and relax.
14: You have a right to occasionally disappoint or inconvenience others. No one is perfect, and mistakes happen. Everyone in the pack should practice tolerance and understanding. For some BDSM masters, failure and mistakes are punishable offences and often viewed as failures by a pup. At sirius pup we recognise that a pup learns from mistakes and punishment is best kept for BDSM play of hardcore scenes of master and slave.
15: You have a right to solve your own problems. Other people, especially your Owner and Trainer are not responsible for solving your problems pup. There will be things your Owner and Trainer can and will help you with, but whenever finding a solution is important it's better you start solving the problem rather than waiting for your Owner and Trainer to do it for you. You are an adult, and that means not expecting others to fix up your messes.
16: You have the right to change your mind. Just because you have said something doesn't mean you have to do it. You always have the right to change your mind. Your Owner and Trainer can be irritated if you do it a lot, but you still have the right to change your mind even after you have chosen to do something.
17: You have a right not to answer a question. Your Owner and Trainer can ask you anything, but you don't necessarily have to answer or justify yourself, or even say yes or no. Questions should not be threatening. When you feel a question is hurting you it is not feedback you are being asked to give.
This list is not meant to be all inclusive and to solve all your problems pup. Nor does it attempt to direct or guide you through everything you will encounter. There is no absolute guidebook to every situation you will encounter, and no absolute set of rights that will protect you. That kind of bullshit is best saved for preachers who will tell you they have all the answers. I don't. This is simply a list of personal rights that you always have as a pup as far as I am concerned. If you find it helpful then it has done it's job.