The Ultimate BDSM Guide: What is it? How to practise it?

The Ultimate BDSM Guide: What is it? How to practise it?

Sex educator and BDSM activist, Franklin Veaux, shares his comprehensive guide on BDSM and how to practice it safely as a beginner

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be tied up and ravished? Do blindfolds give you a thrill? How about the thought of being spanked? If so, fear not. Like millions of people, you might be interested, or have already dabbled in the incredible art of BDSM.

All around the world, millions of couples engage in BDSM—sometimes light and gentle, sometimes intense and passionate—to spice up their lovemaking, explore their fantasies, and keep sex from becoming stale.

Over the past years, we have certainly seen BDSM become highlighted more in mainstream media, news and even our favourite TV shows. In the popular TV series ‘Billions’, the United States Attorney and his wife engage in sensual flogging, where the extremely popular book and movie ‘50 Shades of Grey’ also explored many BDSM acts.

What is BDSM?

BDSM is an acronym. It stands for “B&D” (bondage and discipline), “Ds” (dominance and submission), and “S&M” (sadism and masochism). What’s important to note is that BDSM is an umbrella term that covers lots of different activities.

Some people have the idea that BDSM can only be rough and involves pain, which is not true. Even though some acts do toy with the boundaries of pleasure and pain, the majority of BDSM acts are actually physically painless. Being tied up, or tying up your lover is just as much a BDSM act as a stern whipping. Other acts you might not have considered as part of BDSM, but certainly are, include being blindfolded and caressed with different materials like fur or silk, erotic spankings, even light ones, telling your partner what to do, or being told what to do.

As you can see, there’s far more to BDSM than whips and chains! There are as many ways to ‘do’ BDSM as there are stars in the sky. As well as this, there are, naturally, almost as many myths about BDSM as there are stars in the sky. Popular books and Hollywood movies have done a lot to create some scary myths around BDSM, like:

  • BDSM is only for sexual deviants.
    In fact, countless regular everyday people explore BDSM to keep their sex lives fresh and interesting.
  • You need to spend a lot of money on special BDSM gear to explore BDSM.
    In fact, simply telling your partner what to do, or letting them take control of you, is BDSM! You don’t need any special equipment at all.
  • BDSM is always rough and degrading.
    In fact, BDSM covers such a huge range of activities, many BDSM practices are quite gentle and intimate.
  • BDSM involves a man doing things to a woman.
    In fact, while this is a popular myth due to the alpha male dynamic, anyone can take any role in BDSM arrangements. Many people trade or ‘switch’ roles, exploring different fantasies at different times.

What makes BDSM appealing?

BDSM is, first and foremost, tremendous fun. It’s fun to take control of your lover, or surrender to your lover. It’s fun to be tied up and helpless helpless while your lover slowly explores every inch of your body but there is so much more than that.

Exploring BDSM is an exercise in trust. I know no better way to build trust and connection with your lover than by sharing your fantasies and opening yourself to new realms of passion that excite you both. Trusting your lover with your deepest fantasies is heady, powerful stuff.

BDSM also helps you learn yourself. It’s hard to predict whether or not you’ll enjoy something you’ve never done before. BDSM can help you learn more about your own turn-ons and tastes, as well as your lover’s. It’s scary at first, but it’s also intoxicating to learn more about your own sexual response.

Many couples have found that BDSM has been a useful tool to keep sex alive in a long-term relationship. Many folks accept the idea that sex always fades after a while. It doesn’t have to. There are always new things to try, new fantasies to explore. The field of new experiences to explore is so great, you could live for a hundred years and do something different in bed every single night, never repeating the same thing twice…and you’d still wouldn’t have time to do it all. Sex in a relationship becomes stale when you stop trying new things. When you explore BDSM, you will never run out of fresh ideas to try!

BDSM for Beginners

If you’re new to kink, it can be hard to know where to start. There are so many things to try (and so much misinformation!) it can seem overwhelming. To help sort through the possibilities, and make things a bit less overwhelming, we’ll talk about some ways that beginners in the wild, wonderful world of kink can start exploring BDSM safely, and make it fun.

BDSM Safety Tips

Before we get into the fun part, let’s talk a bit about safety. After all, the point is to have a good time without getting hurt, right?

  1. Choose a ‘safe word’

    Often, part of the fun of BDSM is being able to say “No! Stop!” without really meaning it. Perhaps you’re pretending to be kidnapped and ravished, perhaps your lover has tied you up and is teasing you. Whatever fantasy you’re playing out, if you want to be able to say “No!” then you need to find a word that really does mean “no.” Many people use a word like “red.” Some people use a word that is not likely to come up while you’re playing out a scenario, like “pineapple.” Whatever it is, make sure you’ve both agreed that it means “stop” for real, and that you both know what it is.

  2. Leave the fuzzy handcuffs alone

    Fuzzy handcuffs seem less threatening than rope, but handcuffs are hard and narrow. They don’t make good bondage toys, because they can cause injury with very little force. The idea of restraint is to limit movement but not cause painMany of the mainstream commercial handcuffs available are not made with restraint comfort in mind so be wise when choosing the right pair.

  3. Don’t use nylon stockings for bondage

    When using nylon stockings, the knots you tie can pull tight and become hard or almost impossible to remove. This can certainly be an issue so choose something more suitable. If you want to use stockings for restraint, use the correct ropes or cuffs from a reputable supplier.

  4. Be careful about circulation

    If you tie someone up, don’t make the ropes tight enough to cut off blood flow! If your partner’s hands or feet get cold, or they lose sensation, it’s too tight. It’s always a good idea to tie knots that you can untie very easily, it’s not only sailors that need to tie potential life threatening knots so have a read on the best knots for bondage.

  5. Keep bandage scissors handy

    They’re cheap, you can find them at any pharmacy or even the supermarket, and they can come in handy if you need to get someone loose in a hurry. Again place caution if you are using scissors to ensure you do not injure your partner when cutting ties.

With that said, let’s move on to the good bit. Here are some beginner’s tips for getting started with BDSM.

BDSM & Communication

It can be hard to talk about your fantasies at first, if you’re not used to it. There are two parts to good communication: talking about your fantasies and desires, and making it safe for your partner to talk about theirs. That means being willing to hear what your partner shares with you, without judgment or criticism, even if what you hear surprises you.

One way to start the conversation is simply to ask, “What do you think of bondage?” or “What do you think of spanking?”. Another way might be to begin talking about a scene in a book or a movie can open the door to communication about your feelings and desires.

While you’re at it, talk about your boundaries too! Everyone has limits, even the most hardcore kinkster. If something doesn’t appeal to you, it’s okay to say, “That doesn’t really get me going.” It’s also okay for your limits to change over time.

How to practice BDSM

Here are some fun, kinky sex ideas for beginning BDSM:

  1. Teasing, tickling, and denial

    This is a great way to start exploring BDSM. Tell your partner you’re going to tease them into a frenzy. Undress them slowly. Sit them down and spend some time kissing and caressing them. Linger over them. See how worked up you can make them without giving them an orgasm. Spend some time at it.

    For extra fun: use a vibrator. Hold it close to your partner without quite touching them. Make them ask you for it—persuasively. Touch them for only a few seconds, but stop when they’re just about to come.

    bdsm teasing tickling

  2. Playing director

    This is tremendous fun. One of you is the director; the other is the subject. The director tells the subject what to do to put on a show. “Take off your clothes. No, more slowly. Don’t rush. Run your hands up and down your body. Now slowly slide one hand between your legs.” Watching your lover give themselves pleasure at your direction is fantastic, erotic fun.

    For extra fun: keep the power play alive outside of bedroom. Perhaps send text messages to each other directing sexual acts from afar.

    bdsm playing director

  3. Use a blindfold

    Once your partner is blindfolded, explore every inch of their body, top to bottom. Tell them not to move or touch you. Use fingers, hands, lips, and tongue everywhere. Stroke them with different textures, like fur or coarse fabric.

    For extra fun: tie their hands behind their back. Alternate between soft caresses and bites. Combine it with tickling and teasing.

    bdsm guide blindfold

  4. Explore bondage

    Use ropes or, if you’re lazy like I am, leather or fabric cuffs. Tie your lover spreadeagle to the bed. Whisper in their ear all the things you want to do to them. Teasing, biting, stroking, massaging, licking, using toys on them…the sky’s the limit!

    For extra fun: explore forced orgasms. Now that they’re tied and helpless, see how many times you can make them come!

    BDSM bondage

  5. Erotic spanking

    Over the knee, or bent over the kitchen table, or on hands and knees on the bed or the floor, a spanking is a great way to show who’s in charge. Light or hard, fast or slow, all at once or combined with gentle caresses, there are all sorts of things you can do.

    For extra fun: tell them how naughty they’ve been. Alternate between spanking and touching. Finger or stroke until they’re on the edge of orgasm, then spank, then finger or stroke until they’re close again, then spank. See how long you can keep them horny and frustrated!

How to be submissive

A submissive is a person who agrees to give up control to someone else. A lot of BDSM play centers on domination and submission, also called “erotic power exchange.”

A great way to start being more submissive in the bedroom is to ask your partner for things, and don’t do them without a ‘yes.’ These can be simple (“May I please kiss you?” “May I please touch you?”) or more deep (“May I please have an orgasm?”). Asking your partner for permission to do things like touch them, touch yourself, or have an orgasm can help put both of you in the mood…and it’s really hot!

You can follow a set of rules during sex. This is one of my favorite things. They can be little things (like always wearing a certain piece of jewelry to show you’re submissive) or big things (never wear clothes when you’re in the house on weekends). Common rules include always calling your partner by a certain title (some people use “sir” or “ma’am,” I like “Maestro”),

Setting punishments for breaking the rules also adds an air of dangerous excitement to your session. These punishments might be spanking, or loss of orgasm privileges, or standing naked in a corner to evoke sexual humiliation.

How to be dominant

This is the other side of the coin. Want to take charge? You can start by setting a list of rules for your partner to follow. These rules might be like the ones we just talked about. Or, you can create little rituals for your partner to follow, like always masturbating in the shower, or always doing a strip tease when they come to bed, or always presenting themselves for inspection before leaving the house.

You can also give your partner assignments. These might include things like writing down a new sexual fantasy each week, or shopping online for a new sex toy, or coming up with a list of punishments, or even learning to give an erotic massage.

Did you know you can incorporate BDSM into tantric massage?

It’s true! You can incorporate many of these ideas, such as blindfolds, bondage, and domination and submission into tantric massage. For example you can add teasing and denial or a bit of restraint to tantric massage for a delicious new twist! Check out Karma Tantric’s wonderful BDSM tantric massage that can help you ease into the wonders of BDSM in a safe massage based environment.

Franklin Veaux

Author & BDSM Activist

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Franklin is a writer, educator, explorer of new ideas, and inventor of unusual sex toys. He is coauthor of the popular book More Than Two. You can find him online at www.xeromag.com and www.franklinveaux.com. | Read More