What does BDSM Stand for?
The term BDSM dates back to 1969; however, the exact origin of the term BDSM is unclear, though the practice of it is assumed to date back to the start of humankind as a species and is dated at least back to aproximately 3000 BC. It is often interpreted as a compound initialism from B&D (Bondage and Discipline), D&S (Dominance and Submission), and S&M (Sadism and Masochism). Regardless of its origin, BDSM is used as a catch-all phrase to include a wide range of activities, forms of interpersonal relationships, and distinct subcultures.
BDSM is a variety of erotic practices involving Power exchange, Role-playing, bondage, and other interpersonal dynamics. Given the wide range of practices, some of which may be engaged in by people who do not consider themselves as practicing BDSM, inclusion in the BDSM community and/or subculture is usually dependent on self-identification and shared experience. Interest in BDSM can range from one-time experimentation to a lifestyle, and is sometimes referred to as a sexual identity/orientation.
What does “X” word mean?
Thankfully you are in the best possible place to gather information about simple definitions and meanings about a complex string of BDSM theories, roles and practices; you are on a wiki devoted entirely to organizing and presenting those definitions and concepts to you!
If you have other questions, feel free to continue to peruse the FAQ, because this site has an extensive one and chances are we’ll at least be able to get you started on your path.
This BDSM stuff sounds interesting, what is good starting advice?
Being new to BDSM can very difficult and intimidating. There is a lot of information to digest up front, and lots of potentially bad things that can happen, plus, being new one is still not very informed about the risks they might be unintentionally taking without even realizing it. One in three kinksters polled reported having experienced a Consent violation at some point during their experiences according to a 2013 NCSF poll. That can be scary for many. That said, exploring BDSM can be one of the most rewarding things a person might do(according to some), and more and more people embrace BDSM culture as a lifestyle in a risk aware and consenting fashion every day. The best thing you can do is research BDSM and see if exploring these things is right for you. At worst, you’ll walk away from the research with an education.
Best practices indicate the following as generally good advice for starting out…
Do Your Research
The biggest part of Consent, which is the biggest part of the scene, is being informed. Whether you are just discovering BDSM or are just coming into the public scene, being knowledgeable of the risks and rewards of the community is a must. Research is a helpful tool that should be used often. Socialize with other members of the community of all experience levels. It is always a journey to be aware of the surroundings, but it is often an extremely rewarding journey to know what the scene will provide.
New BDSM explorers may also want to:
- Consider if a Mentor may be a preferred chance at learning.
- Consider if a Protector might be a wise option to employ.
- Find any Fetishes that pique their interest and do some research on them.
Consider Going to a Munch
While there is no guarantee as to the quality of individuals at a munch, it is likely that there will be people at a Munch that you are able to identify with. Although munches aren’t guaranteed to have experienced people, especially those who are well-known, respected, and fully vetted, in attendance, they are a good step towards learning how to meet people in a safe, public setting and how to become more comfortable with some of the more common everyday aspects of the scene.
Be aware that there is almost always a lack vetting of munch attendees by the hosts, due to the fact that munches are designed to be open invitation gatherings, usually at public places such as restaurants or bars. Due to this, there is a chance of undesirable attendees. Undesirable attendees could include people who are unpleasant or even predators who will attend munches for the opportunity to have access to new and uninformed individuals.
Consider Taking A Class
Classes are a good way to learn various bits of information or technique, especially niche techniques such as certain styles of Bondage, sensation, or Impact play. Many events host classes either before or during them; some venues have allotted teaching nights at regular intervals.
Attending the classes of more experienced members in the BDSM community can be a great way to gain a lot of the subtle nuance and hands-on experience you can’t gain from a wiki. Consider studying under those that are well reviewed as experts on a piece of subject matter you are interested in. Not everything can be learned from a wiki and many BDSM activities require hands on learning and supervision to attempt.
Remember to do your due diligence research on the presenter of any class you are interested in to make sure the information you are getting is correct and up to date. Vetting also helps ensure that the class you take is the class which will teach you how to be safe and keep your scene under control. If a presenter has been described as violating Consent, especially in a class setting; using unsafe methods; or trolling for potential partners in a class setting, these may be unsubstantiated rumors, or they may be valid concerns. Research your presenters and choose who you learn from wisely.
Consider attending an event
An Event is a pre-planned occurrence of a gathering of people to practice BDSM in a real world environment.
Events attract many different types of people with many different experiences and experience levels in the community. Most larger events have a panel of classes, from informational sessions on consent and conduct to practicing social awareness to hands-on education on using specific implements or styles of play. Many events vet their presenters before placing their classes on the schedule. Some events offer fun ways of getting to know other people, such as board games, introduction activities, open discussions, or event-hosted parties.
Event hosts are often personable people who wish to have their events open to everybody. They will often put up suggestion threads on forums to help keep their events new, exciting, and open. Each event has its own reputation and it is good for you to research the history and reputation of an event you might consider to attend.
At an event of any size, keep in mind the importance, despite the safety net that a community of like minded individuals may provide, that consent violations and injury are still a possible threat and that even without malicious intent that accidents can and do happen. Most real world events have at least one person on guard in the dungeon, known as a DM, who can be alerted to questionable or patently unsafe behavior and is trusted to help ensure best practices in the space provided. Check out some of the Public Calendars of BDSM Events.
It is also understood that public events are not for everyone, and it is perfectly acceptable never to attend one, however, many find these events to be fun and afford them lots of great opportunities.
Is BDSM abuse? How could someone possibly like getting hit with things and not be insane?
The bottom line is, if BDSM is conducted with explicit, informed consent, then it is not abuse. If it is conducted without explicit, informed consent, then it may be abuse. Abuse has everything to do with consent, and nothing to do with whether or not hitting is involved. Further, the question itself is ableist and assumes that those with certain disadvantages can’t participate in healthy BDSM practices.
Abuse specifically does not take the feelings of the other person into account, nor their personal betterment or growth, which are often themes strongly rooted in many BDSM relationships. Abuse specifically is intended to do harm to an individual, BDSM is intended for personal enjoyment of all parties involved.
It’s also important to remember that many folks already practice BDSM to some degree. Have you ever called your lover a naughty name? Maybe a light spanking spice up the bedroom? What about maybe that pair of fuzzy handcuffs and that feather you take out on special occasions? All of those things, on several levels, constitute BDSM practice, specifically humiliation/objectification, impact, and bondage plus sensation play, respectively.
Beyond that fact that many people, possibly yourself included, practice BDSM without even realizing it on a regular basis, there are some studies that correlate BDSM practices with better mental health than folks that don’t engage in BDSM. BDSM is also no longer listed as an insanity within the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition and is instead listed under paraphilia disorders which exist only if the person has intense guilt and shame about their BDSM experiences, which has a lot more to do with societal shaming than the practice itself being implicitly wrong.
Specific reasons for engaging in BDSM are as unique as the individuals that partake in the activities, however many indicate enhancements to their relationship dynamics and enjoyment of the sensations and experiences that can be very intensely pleasurable and euphoric or even spiritual.
Is BDSM illegal?
Laws vary by region and in many cases BDSM practices can be considered illegal under abuse laws, be sure to research the laws and BDSM Rights in your area.
It is important to note that Consent laws in your area very much make a big difference as to what legally constitutes abuse or consent and it’s good to be aware of the laws in your area. In many instances it’s also further important to understand the political climate as well. In some places there may be no laws excusing abuse charge with a consent defense but the case may be dismissed, or in many further instances it is also possible that consent defense laws may exist and courts fail to uphold them in regards to BDSM. There are also organizations which will help educate you on the laws for your area, as well as promote progress and advocate for BDSM rights and liberties as a whole.
What is the difference between a Kink and a Fetish?
In modern vernacular these two terms are often used interchangeably, however, traditionally a sexualized kink is considered to be a term used to refer to a playful usage of sexual concepts which are overt, accentuated, unambiguously expressive of sexuality. A sexualized fetish is traditionally considered an object or situation of interest that causes sexual arousal. There is sometimes an implied notion that a kink was something done for casual fun, while a fetish would indicate a form of requirement for sexual arousal.
Best Practices indicate that if you aren’t sure how someone is using a term when multiple definitions may apply, that you politely ask them to clarify in what way they are using the term.
Is it really a consent violation just to touch someone’s hand/hair/etc.?
Yes. Violation of Consent doesn’t even require touch; it can include invading someone’s personal space, using certain language with someone, or expecting someone to use certain language or obey certain etiquette.
There is a huge spectrum of consent violations, from personal space invasions to rape and assault. Despite the varying degrees of perceived “severity” throughout the spectrum of consent violation, all consent violations are serious matters. If you violate someone’s consent accidentally whether out of lack of information or forgetfulness, be sure to make an immediate, genuine apology and recognize what has been done wrong.
Although boundaries differ from person to person, it is always good to be aware that every person’s boundaries deserve equal respect. Best Practices indicate that it is proper etiquette to ask before touching anybody. This also goes for calling people anything other than their given name or preferred pronoun or standing or sitting within a foot or two of a person.
In many cases in the world of BDSM, people will have a Protocol set in place that requires either certain permissions or specific actions to be performed before they are allowed by their figure of authority, whether Dominant, Mentor, Trainer, or Significant other, to perform certain actions. These protocols can also disallow interactions of some natures, such as touching. If a person asks you to speak first with their figure of authority, or says that they need to consult their figure of authority, do not be taken aback. This is their way of securing the idea that they do indeed consent to what you are asking of them, even if it seems superficial to you. If a person says that they cannot perform the action you desire due to protocol, respect their boundaries. Those boundaries are put in place for a reason, even if you do not understand that reason.
Why would a man wear a chastity device?
The average man would immediately reject the notion of wearing such a device, as it represents both a loss of something dearly important, as well as unnecessary and uncomfortable. But after the initial reaction, some men become curious. Men who think they may have a sexual-related problem and/or a submissive nature sometimes will look at these as something of a solution or something exciting that could add to their relationship. Once a man realizes that wearing the device is totally voluntary, curiosity could lead to giving it a try.
Based on feedback from our visitors, the reasons include:
• Needed to help restore trust in a relationship with your wife or life partner after a loss of self-control.
• Self-protection to resist undesired impulses for sexual encounters.
• Control of compulsive masturbation problems.
• To spice up your marriage by surrendering control of your orgasms to your partner.
• The feelings and sensations that a man may derive from wearing such a device include:
• Maintained focus (fewer sexual distractions)
• Self-confidence (no need to be concerned about resisting temptation)
• A sense of constant, low-level arousal when you think about your wife or partner holding the key
• Fewer arousing dreams during sleep (once you get used to it)
• Loss or reduction of arrogance when you’ve given the key to someone you love
Why would a woman want her man to wear a chastity device?
Not all women take to the idea of having her man locked up in a chastity device, at least not initially. But based on feedback from our customers, the reasons include:
• To help restore trust in a relationship when there is suspicion or evidence of extra-marital affairs.
• Similarly, women who have been hurt by a former partner’s infidelity may want her man to wear one for her own sense of security.
• Some women find it very erotic to be able to control their man’s orgasm.
• A man will try harder to please his woman if there is a chance she will deny him access to the key; consequently he’s more attentive and helpful around the home.
As long as he is wearing it, you will never again have to worry about him leaving the toilet seat up. Generally, when the wife is holding the key and knows that he is locked, she will experience:
• a greater sense of security and trust with your man
• a sense of control that some women find very erotic
• more attention and affection, and fore-play during sex
• some women find that they want to dress and behave more sexily to further stimulate their man (teasing and denial), which in-turn stimulates her own sex drive.
Are the devices visible under clothing?
Generally, the devices are very discrete. Loose-fitting pants are recommended, and darker colored pants tend to be even better. Of all of the devices, the CB-6000-S and CB-3000 are the most discrete for most men. Silicon models such as Birdlocked and Dick Cage can be very discrete on men that have adequate slack in the scrotum, otherwise can be very conspicuous. However, the soft and flexible material can be “compressed” with the use of tight-fitting underwear, which helps make it more discrete.
About being discovered: you will learn over time that you are far more conscious of the bulge that you can see that other people are. As long as your clothes are loose fitting, nobody will ever know. Swimming poses a different problem though, as wet trunks tend to cling to the lines of your body, therefore could be more noticeable. People that notice would likely dismiss it has to have a large member. You could diminish that by wearing tight fitted underwear under your clothes to keep it closer to your body; spandex panties work well if you’re willing to wear them.
How long does it take to get used to wearing one?
It will vary from man to man, of course. Initially, it will feel awkward, but after a while, once the right fit is found – typically a few hours to a few days – it will come to feel more natural, and you will become less and less aware of it as time goes on. You may even find it to be pleasant to wear most of the time, as it would be a constant reminder of your partner, or at least of your own sexuality.
Many men experience painful nocturnal erections during the early days of wear. This does tend to pass with time (1-2 weeks, typically) as the mind retrains itself to not have erections during sleep.
What should I do if I experience an erection in my sleep?
This is pretty common during the first few weeks of wear. Unconsciously it can be somewhat stimulating, which could provoke an erection that would be uncomfortable, even somewhat painful while locked up. If you wake up in that condition, it’s best to remove the device for the remainder of the night and try it again the next night. Eventually, your mind will be trained not to become aroused during sleep, and you will be able to sleep normally.
Can I stand up to urinate while the device is attached?
Technically it is possible, though not advisable. You must have your urator slot lines up EXACTLY right, and your penis must fill the tube to the end. If not, you are likely to spray all over the place. It’s best to sit while peeing, for all concerned. Your wife (if you are married) will love you even more for doing so. 🙂