WHAT IS BDSM?
The most important thing about any subject or art you’re going to learn is to learn the foundations. So we’re going to cover the very basics of what it means to “be into BDSM”. BDSM stands for a lengthy acronym but it’s been combined to mean multiple things depending on what you learned or what you part(s) of BDSM you like to participate in. BDSM Breaks down like this: Bondage and Discipline, Dominance and Submission, Sadism and Masochism. Now if you notice there are 2 D’s and 2 S’s, this isn’t a mistype or anything. Every aspect of BDSM has a counterpart, Rope Bunnies have riggers, sadists have masochists, a Dominant has a submissive, and so on until infinity because BDSM has limitless roles and activities to learn and get into. When you finish your BDSM “personality” test at BDSMTest.org, you can begin to learn what you may lean more towards, with proper terminology and a foundation to start with.
Now that you know what BDSM means, which most of you readers already know but I’m here to cater to all levels of experience, it’s time to understand what RACK means. RACK isn’t a term most beginners know and that’s ok. RACK simply means Risk Aware Consensual Kink. It can break down a bit
– Risk Aware: Any and all partners involved in the play session or scene, are aware of the risks that are associated with the type of play that will be taking place and have established safe-words, safety check methods, as well as any STI risks that may be present
– Consensual: Any and all partners involved in the scene consent to the the things that will be occurring with any participants
–Kink: The act of enjoying sexual or non sexual fetishes with yourself or more people. These activities are limitless so I’m not going to list them all at this point. Don’t worry though, we will cover many of these as time goes on.
The final acronym can be used in any aspect of sex, not just BDSM. SSC is important through any aspect of sex. It stands for Safe, Sane, and Consensual. I assume you’re smart enough to get the concepts of that but just in case I’ll go over them anyway.
–Safe: Any and all acts are not going to spread an STI or any damage to any person(s) involved. Any and all participants have taken the steps necessary to make sure that all parties involved are aware of any risks and possible STIs.
–Sane: This means that any and all parties should be of sound mind and body. I hate that I have to say this but the person that is drunk out of their mind, DOES NOT check this box. Now this doesn’t mean that you can’t have sex if you’re under the influence of any impairing substances, we all have done it and probably will do it again. The key here is to know that all parties involved are aware of the situation, know what’s going on, and are able to consent or withdraw consent at any point.
–Consensual: Do I really need to explain what consent is? No means No, unless you have safe-words and No means something else, but that safe-words still require consent and you can read a person to know if No really means No.
I’m sure you noticed there is a repetition of Consent in these phrases, that is simply because consent is THE most important aspects of sex. It is even more important when it comes to BDSM and kink. What you may want done to you someone else may not, the ability to consent and withdraw consent are more important than any orgasm or subspace that could ever exist.
OKLAHOMA! A QUICK GUIDE TO SAFEWORDS
A good way to work out consent and safety is safe-words and safety check measures. Safe-words aren’t just for kink, they can work in your standard vanilla bedroom. It is important to know that you and your partner(s) are on the same page sexually about what is happening. The most common system is the stop light system.
–Green: I like that, you can take it a step further, everything is ok. Green means that things are going exactly like they should
–Yellow: Slow down, I’m reaching my limit, I may need a break soon. Yellow can mean tons of things, but, you’ve negotiated what it means right? Yellow can be a halftime word if you need some water or need a break just to bring yourself back to green
–Red: STOP RIGHT NOW! The scene is over and things need to be addressed. This doesn’t mean that things are over all night necessarily, but until you and your sub or play partner discuss what went wrong and what happened, nothing else should be happening.
The alternative to that is the safe word, we all know Pineapple or Oklahoma, but this word can be whatever you’ve negotiated beforehand. I personally prefer the stop light system as there is more to work with within the session if there are levels of safe-words. There may be times where your partner(s) may not have the ability to speak, this could be due to a ball gag, a position, or any other means that could stop a person from speaking and explaining what’s going wrong. That’s where a safety check item comes in handy. I like to just have an item held in the hand that can be dropped if there is a problem especially when there is a problem (Red) or can be waved around (Yellow). The item allows things to be extra safe when there is any obstruction to the airway and any other reason to not have the ability to speak. I think it can really keep things on the safest side of caution, who knew that sex and kink wasn’t all sexy and kinky?
NO BUTT STUFF AND OTHER LIMITS
I’ve mentioned negotiation and establishing safe-words, something else to keep in mind for a negotiation or boundaries. Every person has them. Limits are a good way to establish this term, Soft and Hard limits. Soft limits are the things you don’t think you would want to happen but could be open to a negotiation or conversation (Think anal or swallowing as soft limits people talk about). Hard limits are the completely off limits things, there is no negotiation and you probably will never change your mind about these (Think water sports(piss play) or scat (feces) as some pretty common hard limits.
Setting up the safe-words and safety system as well as knowing the limits of one’s partner(s) is an essential foundation to knowing what to expect and how things can go. While these are effective to getting things to an understanding, they don’t always cover things 100% of the things that can come up or evolve during a session. It’s key to be on the same page at all times with your partner(s).
So we’re going to skip the actual play session in this article for the most part. I’m skipping to another important aspect of any BDSM session, Aftercare. Aftercare is never a one size fits all. It is what your submissive or play partner may need to come down from the intensity of the scene. Some like to be cuddled and eat snacks to come down, some go as far as needing to continue in a solo way and act as furniture for their Dominant. There are many ways that aftercare can be shown. You and your partner(s) may not even know what they want until the time comes and it can be ever evolving. The one thing that will become apparent to anyone who takes a Dominant role is a lot of work and a lot of responsibility. If you’re not able to handle the extra work that comes with the role, you shouldn’t be doing it. You have someone who has given you all of them in the most vulnerable way possible. You’ve used physical force on them, you’ve manipulated the mind, or a combination of the two. You have to make sure that they have trusted you for the right reason, you bring them down, you take care of them and make sure that they are better than you began the scene.
SOME LESSER CONSIDERED ESSENTIALS
Sometimes we get ahead of ourselves and go all out and buy rope and cuffs and a bunch of other stuff, we often forget the things that are essential and not often talked about. These items include but are not limited to:
–Trauma Shears: No matter what happens and how much you know, knots can be tied wrong, restraints can be too tight and any other items that restrict blood or air flow can become problematic. The Trauma shears (Found Here) are able to get things cut through very quickly. They work on any light material as well as leather, vinyl, nylon, and some thin metals. They are a must have in any BDSM scene.
–Towels: It’s nice to keep them nearby to make sure that any fluids are taken care of and I’ve got a link to some that are really solid to use. You should have separate towels honestly, so you’re not using a house towel or a dirty sock to get things cleaned up after.
–Water: It doesn’t really matter what brand, I like Dasani water but just keep a few bottles nearby, having fun is thirsty work.
–Coconut Oil: Great to use for hand stuff, and it makes a great massage oil as well.
–Safety Item: Anything your partner(s) can hold to show if there is an issue, make it a rattle type device and you can use it to shake for yellow.
Those are just some of the items that most people don’t consider before playing, If you have any good items to add comment or send me a message and I’ll edit this to add them in with your username as a contributor to the list.
I’ve said it a lot already but it’s important to communicate before, during, and after a play session. During a play session, non-verbal communication can be a game changer. It has the ability to let you know what is feeling good and what may be uncomfortable but not yellow or red worthy. This is why trust is a huge part of playing and being sexual with anyone.
JUST THE TIP….START SMALL OR NOT AT ALL
Let’s imagine that you have done your BDSM Test (My Personal Favorite), if you’re in a relationship check out Mojo Upgrade (Found Here), now you’re ready to get started but you and your partner(s) don’t know how to get started. The key is to start small, use what you’ve got available to test the water and see what you like. Sometimes you have things around the house (Pervertibles) that you can try first, and then upgrade as you find what you like. Some common pervertibles include but are not close to limited to:
–Wooden or rubber spatulas
–Candles (Learn about wax play and test it before playing, Different candles have different melting points)
–Butter knife (I’ll cover this in a sensory deprivation article)
–Belts, scarves, ties, etc.
The list can go on forever but we’re going to back it up one step more and explain how to find your way with no toys and items available. Everyone can learn to perfect these before even bringing the first toy into the bedroom.
The easiest ways to get started is to go back to the playground methods:
– Hair Pulling: It’s best to treat your hand and fingers like a comb but reverse, Start at the base of the neck and start getting some hair between your fingers, keeping your grip close to the scalp has the most effect without pain. The ideal place to stay is either the back of the head or near the top (the crown of the head where the back meets the top). As you advance and get better at feeling it and your partner(s) know what they like and want to try (communication right?) you can learn how to pull the sides and other parts to get the effect you’re going for.
–Spanking: The key to a solid spank is the warm up, make sure you massage the area you’re spanking to get the blood flowing to the spot and stimulate the nerves for the most impactful feeling. It is very important to know that there are no no places to spank or hit, especially for beginners, the back, neck, and stomach are off limits until you learn what you’re doing. No one wants to feel a kidney shot when they’re trying to feel the fun of spanking. Keep it to the ass, thighs, and possibly the breasts if you do it light enough and it’s more for impact than pain. Also I know that some of you may have kids, roommates or still live with family, the back of the hand works wonders for muffling the sound in my experience. After you make contact, keep your hand there and massage the area again, it soothes the pain and allows things to progress as the body adapts to the sensation. If you want the sting over the thud, hit quick and pull away, the lack of massage allows the nerves to fully react to the sensation.
– Dirty Talk: Not everyone wants to feel pain and it’s not required to enjoy BDSM, sometimes it’s enough to hear something raunchy said to or about you. Of course communicate what you’d like to try beforehand, but sometimes a well placed “dirty little slut” can be as powerful as a Rabbit Vibrator. Hearing “Yes Daddy” or “Yes Sir” can bring a Dom back into the scene if they may have been slipping away. When I cover sensory deprivation in more detail, I’ll explain how effective the words you say can create a scene that isn’t even happening, it can make your partner(s) feel like they are in a crowded room or on display for people and it’s only you two in the room in reality. Dirty Talk is communication in the moment. It lets both of you know that something feels good, or you can be explicit about what you want. Jut use caution because it has the ability to cause a trigger in some people and if you’re not on the same page about what’s allowed and what’s expected then it could be a bad thing but that is one of the reasons we communicate what’s happening.
–Biting: I’m personally not a fan, but biting can be sexy to some. I can’t go into great detail here because I’m not into it so I don’t know much about it. With that said, make sure that if you’re biting and such, don’t leave marks where family and co-workers might be able to see it. I think bruising can be sexy, but hickeys on the neck are just a tad too trashy for my tastes and most others as well. These marks are supposed to be private trophies. Don’t bite too hard either, the jaw and teeth have the ability to tear through skin easily so please use caution.
DON’T BE INSECURE
Those are just a few fun ways to test things out before you get deeper into the fun of things, Now let’s say you have some toys around that you use and maybe you would like to bring them in to play. I know that some of you have an issue with toys in the bedroom, let me address that real quick. There is no shame in increasing the pleasure your partner feels. Bringing out the dildo to insert in your partner while you’re getting oral doesn’t mean you’re not enough. Putting a bullet between your body and your partner’s clit while they’re on top doesn’t mean you aren’t feeling good to them. I mean Ice cream is delicious but isn’t it better when you add chocolate syrup to it? Same thing, it doesn’t mean you’re not good enough, it means that you want to maximize pleasure for your partner(s) and that’s the right thing to think.
Here are a few basic items to get started with if you have them already around the house. Some of the best sex toys to begin with are:
–Mini Bullet Vibes
–Magic Wand (The plug in ones are better than the battery operated ones in my opinion
–Floggers – If you don’t have one get one custom made from Juniper Jenn.
–Restraints – They have a kit at Spencer’s or any local adult toy store (Shop Local First). If not you can find Cuffies online, which are silicone cuffs that do a great job at the restraining but are safer than rope, especially if you’re a beginner.
IT TAKES A VILLAGE
I know this has been a lot of info, but, I know how important it is to learn the basics before you go and get someone hurt. I think you’re awesome for taking this step and expanding your sexual landscape. Don’t forget that there is amazing and supportive communities all around you on this topic as well as many others. Check out Fetlife, Reddit has tons of communities to help, Facebook (not easy to find), also check to see if you have any local dungeons or groups that meet up on Meetup.
Feel free to reach out to Me or Juniper Jenn if you have any questions or need some advice. I can be reached on my linktree (linktr.ee/kinkslayer). I work closely with Miss Juniper Jenn and we have really helped each other learn more and more about this world. Neither one of us are judgmental or ever going to breach confidentiality with anyone who reaches out to us.
I look forward to hearing from all of you and thank you for the support. One last note, the amazon links above are affiliate links and I get some of the proceeds if you buy from those links so be sure to help me out so I can keep bringing you great content.