Two of our players' characters have had (since the beginning) a very 'pig-tail pulling' relationship from day one. One is a high lady, the other a rougher sea-man. Little fireballs aimed at armpits, lots of insults and little poison quills stabs...you get the picture. Both players seem good with and check in with each occasionally to make sure everything is still copacetic. Til last session. Lady decides (for long winded reasons) to sleep in Man's hammock which is up on deck. Man tips her out of said hammock and says no. Lady says fine, neither of us will and tears one of the supports. It is now too unstable for Man to sleep in but Lady still can. Man says fine, sleep in it.
Man waits until Lady is asleep, then binds her up tightly in hammock. She wakes while this is happening and Man headbutts her to unconsciousness. Man hangs hammock over board of ship, feet first and above water. Which lady is terrified of.
Lady awakes, screams bloody murder, Man comes back. Man tries to say he did this to make peace (with her). Lady tries to bite/claw but can't. So Lady starts insulting Man and in so doing calls his mother a cow (Man in Minotaur.)
So Man punches unarmed and bound up Lady in face til she quiets then lets her partially loose and walks away.
Lady character is obviously furious and is now doing silent treatment. Man character never apologizes but repeated states he was 'only trying to make peace.'
The player of the Lady character shut down a bit, but didn't outright express a problem with the interaction. (In my prior post I stated that none of the other players seemed concerned. It should have stated none of the other Characters seemed upset). If any of the other players were upset by it, I couldn't tell.
Some of them even made jokes after the session was over about going back to 1940s and wearing wife beater. and "Wife has black eye cause I explained something to her...why does she has two black eyes..well cause I had to explain it twice." Hardy har har and all that. One other player was quiet after the incident in game but laughed at the jokes.
I feel very uncomfortable with both the casual, rather over the line player-on-player unarmed violence AND the after session talk. If anyone else was upset by it, I couldn't tell. To be fair, I did not project my discomfort at that time either--mostly to avoid some of the statements that have come up.
I don't want people to feel like they can't play their characters in certain ways and in-game culture is different, and players can sometimes make OOC decisions etc etc.
But I also don't want to play with people who act like that in game AND also make talk/jokes like they did after. It seems like the choice they made in game (and lack of a reaction to it) was a testing of the waters and allowed them to act as they did after the game.
Main concern is play how you want to play but I need to be able to trust that you are playing a role and that you are not secretly acting out your true self.
Again, I realize that in the game, we murder people, we steal, we maime, I GET IT. Just tying up and punching a defenseless friend (GENDER ASIDE) just because you feel like felt very out of place with how we have played this game for over a year now.
I am not that close to the DM (just friends) and only known the other players for just over a year. There is one female, one non-binary and four males. Three of the players work together(two for some time), one player has played with two of them before but there is no real relationship out of game. All players (save the non-binary) are playing characters that match their gender. Age range is from 30-55. Lady and Man players have played together (briefly) before and do not work together.
Sadly, and as evidenced in some of the chats and comments (even on this site), bringing up that such joking makes me uncomfortable has a likelihood of being seen as whining or being a 'sensitive snowflake.'
How can I approach my DM and players to get a resolution to these uncomfortable actions without getting that kind of response from the other players/DM?
Update Edit: I followed a script similar to one below when asking talking about the issue with my group. I did it with the whole group at once since I would probably only work up the courage once. It seems to have gone over fine. The Man player said he would not make any more domestic abuse jokes. Haven’t played another session yet so I don’t know if/how I’ve affected the group’s vibe. The Man player seemed truly upset he had caused me discomfort and the Lady player said that she knew (from past games with Man) that sometimes when he gets excited/into the role play, he can get a bit offensive so she was less taken aback but what happened. So issue is addressed for now. I’ll have to see what happens in the future since Man seemed sorry and though what Lady said sounds like a bit of a pattern, Man has gotten pretty excited before and nothing like this had happened, so I think I have hope it won’t happen again.