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BDSM Etiquette and Involvement

BDSM Etiquette and Involvement Igor Amelkovich Photography
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OK, so you are venturing into the BDSM community and aren’t sure how to interact. What do you need to know? How do you not offend people? Here are some tips and tricks for navigating the kink community.

  What is a Munch?

A munch is a gathering of kinky folks in a vanilla environment to meet and mingle. Most of them are done in a restaurant, but that isn’t the only place munches are held. Munches are a way for people to get a feel for others and maybe flirt a little. It’s also a great way to pick up information and find teachers if you are inexperienced. Most groups and individuals require that a person meet the host of a party at a munch before being allowed at a play party.

  Play parties and getting involved:

Play parties can vary greatly depending on the host and where they are located. Many play parties restrict the types of activities that you can engage in. This is typically for safety. Most places will require that no sexual contact occurs, or if it does, that a barrier is used. They will also limit the types of play for safety reasons. For example, any kind of blood play may be limited because of the health risks associated with it. It is up to the host to make these rules, and a great way to find out about them is simply to ask the host. Don’t rely on word of mouth from the other guests. Making a faux pas here will get you banned from events. When in doubt, don’t do it.

  How to approach someone you are interested in:

Kinksters have a bit of a complex etiquette system. This is a basic outline. If someone is unattached, then you ask them if they would like to play with you. If they accept, you then negotiate the scene. Negotiation is a completely different article. The complexity comes in when the person you want to play with is attached to someone else. You can flirt and feel out the interest of the person without stepping on any toes, but you need to actually ask the person in the relationship that fills the role you intend on playing out in your scene. For example, I am a submissive to my partner. If someone wants to play a submissive role with him, they should ask me. I will take their request to him, and we will discuss. Some relationships allow for no discussion on the submissive’s part. That is just how they do things. The dominant will approach the person that made the request with an answer.

On the flip side, if a dominant wants to play with another dominant’s submissive, they approach the dominant for permission. This seems a very complex way of doing things, but it includes everyone that is involved in a relationship in a very respectful way. As a submissive, when another submissive approaches my dominant to play without speaking with me, I assume that they are trying to “steal” my dominant. The same works for a dominant approaching a sub to play.

In the end, have fun and be safe. Take your time getting involved. Never feel like you have to do something you aren’t comfortable with. Ask questions. It is the only way you’re going to learn.

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BDSM—kink—fetish: what are they? How does one do it? And, most importantly, who’s doing it? The answer might just be staring back at you in the mirror.

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