The Ultimate Guide To BDSM: What You Should Know & Tips To Try

You might be among the population that still have a giggle to yourself when someone mentionss BSDM. Here is an ultimate guide to BDSM so that we can all demystify what it is and include some tips and tricks so that we can all try it.

What is BDSM?

BDSM stands for bondage and discipline, dominance and submission, sadism and masochism. In short, it’s a way of utilizing controlled violence to push the limits and boundaries that normally constrain us. It’s a consent-based way of exploring each other’s bodies and identities that can cause people to realize lots about themselves and their preferences.

Who can try it? Anyone! It might seem like something that only really confident, active, young, cool people are capable of participating in, but the whole spirit of BDSM is acceptance and exploration. You don’t have to be perfectly known to yourself before starting or be the most experienced sexual partner. That’s what’s so great about it — anyone can learn and you will learn so much about yourself going forward.

Is it healthy? If you’re like me, your parents might be of a certain generation that frowns upon any sexual experimentation. For them, sex should just be about starting a family, but we’re entering a much more modern perception of sex for pleasure. It’s healthy and we need to stop making it seem shameful to want to have sex in unexpected ways.

It’s an alternative to vanilla sex. If you aren’t feeling particularly fulfilled with your partner’s performance during sex, or you feel like you’re hitting a rut, this is a great way of refreshing the relationship. It’s not better or worse than vanilla sex – it serves different purposes and achieves different effects, but it’s great as an alternative option for new date night ideas.

Tips for trying BDSM if you’re curious

Consult videos online. This is a great way of safely learning about the very basic principles of BDSM. It’s also a useful way of learning about the culture of BDSM because it has a very welcoming and tolerant culture. You don’t want to disrupt a safe space accidentally by coming in thinking it’s an aggressive, violent verbal space when that isn’t the case. Watching videos online will enable you to get a few tips to start your journey of self-exploration.

Join a forum. Literature is a really useful way of figuring out what to wear and where to start. But eventually, you want to talk directly with people who are part of that community. You can see if you see yourself in them and establish how interested you are. Ask them for a few questions to ask yourself to figure out what your boundaries currently are and that will set you right. Know that they might change and you might surprise yourself. Meeting more people who practice BDSM will demystify it for you.

Learn by trying. This is the easiest way to gauge how comfortable you are with BDSM. By doing your research earlier, you will understand the key tenants of the concept and see where you align with them. Then, if you’re still interested, find a trusted friend and with their consent, start experimenting. Understand how the boundaries work (usually safe words) and know that no always means no. Other than that, be safe and have a go!

Start simple with role-play. If you aren’t sure if it’s for you, start incorporating role-play into your sex life. Master-servant dynamics such as policemen and criminal or student and lecturer are popular starting dynamics. Build these scenarios up over time and use them to figure out what kinks you have and can build on in BDSM play.

What you should know

“Safe words are essential,” according to Dr. Stephanie Hunter Jones. Safe words show that you are safe with your partner both physically and mentally. You can be vulnerable with them to communicate your wildest fantasies, knowing that there will be no judgment.

It’s not like 50 Shades of Gray. This is a common misconception. Lots of mommy porn groups will come into BDSM thinking that it’s the same as on the big screen. However, that was more gratuitous and doesn’t paint the same picture of consent and mutual control that is the reality in the community. Don’t believe all that you see in the movies.

It doesn’t have to be scary. Dr. Hunter Jones takes great pains to demystify the lie that BDSM is all about violence and disregard. In fact, it’s a massively safe space for all, and as long as you respect the tenants of consent and boundaries, you will be met with equal non-judgmental respect in return. Have an open mind and go in full-throttle.

In failing relationships, it can reignite the spark of attraction. Experts say that BDSM and other sex-positive communities can rescue marriages that are on the rocks by introducing new boundaries and erasing the previous “rules” that used to limit their experiences. It teaches you about your relationship and yourself. This can help you both improve and be the right one for each other.

It can be useful for power struggles or control issues. Dr. Hunter Jones also comments that if people are struggling with control issues or power dynamics, then seeing them play out in a more theoretical, fictional roleplay can help to problem solve in a more meaningful way, rather than just talking about it after the fact.

It can support trauma recovery. Dr. Hunter Jones also pointed out that in the right circumstances, practicing BDSM can help victims of sexual trauma recover by regaining their sexual agency and assertiveness while within a controlled, safe environment.

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