Whips and chains?
Women in leather boots?
The first time I heard a personal BDSM story, I was at a women’s gathering, circled up late at night in a red tent, to tell juicy sex stories.
Obviously, being drawn to such a workshop, I considered myself a highly sexual being with an open mind. Yet, one share in particular that night left me feeling like a maiden in a tent of wise crones.
An average woman with glasses and a low pony tail, wearing a simple cashmere sweater, proceeded to share about being tied up to a chair and watching a woman dance. She said the eroticism and visual alone, paired with her inibility to move, brought her to orgasm without ever…being…touched.
At the time, I didn’t understand. In fact, my mind was spinning just trying to envision her as anything else but the mom of one of the teenage girls at the festival. I simply couldn’t relate, having never had that experience, and in my mind I categorized her as strange. I tried to analyze her through curiosity.
Was she a lesbian?
Did she also like whips and chains?
What other kind of unusual things was she into?
Fast forward 5 years and I’m sitting cross legged in my lingerie getting my hands tied by my best friend.
Only now I know Shibari is far more than suspending people from the ceiling in torturous positions.
I know that each place the rope meets my body represents a form of touch. Like the firmness of a lover grabbing me, squeezing me, pressing into me.
I know the sound of the rope hitting the floor creates suspense & anticipation.
What will they do to me next?
My mind goes wild.
I know the suspension of my movement creates surrender. Something born of trust. A symbolical message that says “take me.”
All things I crave as a woman.
To be led, contained, surrendered.
From behind me, she reaches around my breasts to fasten the rope at my chest.
The anticipation of her movements have my senses heightened by what feels like a thousand. I feel my thoughts wonder about if this experience lives outside this container.
She moves my hair from side to side depending on where she is working & I find it ever so intimate the way she does it with such delicacy, despite the directness of being tied. The contrast between a nurturing touch & being restrained provides me with much sensation.
The rope slides across my nipple & I bite my lip. My mind wonders if it would feel the same with any person.
This is getting fun.
I imagine other parts of my body that potentially might feel erogenous at the tease of the rope.
Perhaps my inner thigh or my collarbones.
Behind me, she fastens the rope, changing the pace between a slow pull & a fast tugging motion. I find myself longing in the slowness & equally excited by the tugging.
As the harness tightens against my sternum, my body floods with endorphins. She doesn’t know it because she is behind me, but I have a huge guilty smile on my face.
How did such a simple act create so much pleasure in my body?
The reversal of the ropes takes on a new shape and afterward I feel not only energized, but curious and excited to share my experience.
We often hear words like BDSM and kink and think the extreme. However, kink simply refers to any non-traditional form of sex. This can include simple things like blindfolds, ice cubes, role play, toys, or even just watching your partner naked. While BDSM is its own type of kink that includes power dynamics ranging from mild to extreme.
Consciousness, fantasy, power dynamics, and parts of the psyche have been examined through the lens of sex for centuries!
If we view sexual energy as creative energy, as observed in Taoist teachings, we can see that the freeing of such expressions and simple explorations can enhance our lives tenfold.
In addition, curiosities like these invite us to approach sex with intention. How do we want to receive? What emotions or stories are enmeshed with those desires? In what ways must we communicate with our partners? What can we learn from this?
Sex for pleasure is wonderful.
Sex as an embodied practice of inner discovery that is made possible by authentic trust and communication… incredible.
What non-traditional forms of intimacy might spark your own curiosity?
Elements to consider when deciding to engage with kink:
- Consent. It’s important that these explorations are done in a respectful manner. The last thing you want it to jeopardize is the vulnerability offered during sex. As a general rule, if practicing with a partner, always ask permission. Many people enjoy using a “safe word” to communicate a boundary with ease. Regardless of the words chosen, ensure these communications for more, less, & stop are clear & direct.
- Communication. Create a safe container to discuss your desired experience beforehand, & offer feedback afterwards. This may include what felt good, what you’d like more of, what felt like a soft edge/boundary, what you didn’t enjoy, etc. And remember, not all desires have to be acted on! Sometimes it’s freeing to simply discuss it.
- Aftercare. Exploring the psyche during sex can create a lot of excitement, and it’s important to care for the nervous system as adrenaline & hormones regulate after the experience. Some acts can leave us feeling overly exposed if not cared for properly in the following minutes, hours, or days. Discuss & agree beforehand what kind of aftercare soothes you best, like cuddling, talking, showering, etc.
Common kinks you can explore:
Sensory kink may include:
-Using a blindfold to increase other senses
-Temperature play with ice cubes or candle wax
-Impact play which can include spanking or flogging
-Touching your partner with a feather or other texture
Restrictive kink may include:
-Bondage play with the use of handcuffs, ropes, or other tools
-Denial play including the withholding of pleasure from your partner when they are at the peak of their arousal
-Voyeurism/exhibitionism, a game of look but don’t touch
Power dynamic kink may include:
-Role play with the use of characters or archetypes
-Dirty talk with the use of honorifics such as “daddy” or “professor”
There are many more kinks such as fluid play, fantasies, anal play, fetishes, & more. Again, it is an umbrella term to describe “non-traditional” sex.
Each kink has its own threshold of mild to extreme, which will be ultimately decided by you! Allow your exploration to be curious & shame-free by creating a container of self-acceptance & self-awareness. If just beginning, consider journaling about your curiosities & beginning your exploration alone. There is no right or wrong way!
Written by Megan Bloom