Today, given the action between Jian Ghomeshi and the CBC, we’re going to talk about kink. Just so there’s no confusion, I have been playing in this world for a while. I don’t consider it to be a secret and if anyone wants to ask me questions, they’re more than welcome to.

Let me take you into the BDSM world for a moment. I’ve been playing at BDSM for a long time. I’m not a hardcore player nor will I ever be. However, I do support the community and their rights to be heard. In BDSM there is a lot more at play than just beating your partner. As a matter of fact, some Dom/sub relationships don’t involve spanking or slapping. It’s a rich, intricate world that can be very fulfilling. It can also be dangerous.

In BDSM, the Dom is the one who seems to take control of the situation. He directs the play, he pushes the limits, he’s the one that makes demands and expects them to be performed. The sub seems to relinquish control. They’re the ones that perform on command, does what is expected. Yet, this is an illusion.

In truth, the Dom’s job is a lot more than cracking a whip. The Dom always has to be aware of what’s happening, not only with their sub but with the situation around them. They have an obligation to keep their sub safe, which is a lot more detail than it sounds. It’s not just physical safety they need to be concerned with. There is an emotional safety they also need to be aware of before, during and after play. The Dom is restricted by the sub’s boundaries and safety needs.

The sub has a trickier job. It’s the sub that sets the play and the boundaries. The sub is the one who really holds the power. They have the ability to stop the play whenever they want and no reason need ever be given.

There are rules to BDSM play but the only one that matters here is the one that says when one party says stop, all play stops. Now, speaking as someone who plays, sometimes in the heat of the moment you go past the place where your boundary was. I’ve done it many times. No, I didn’t say no or stop. It just happened. Unless you’ve been involved in this kind of play, you can’t possibly understand how this happens. Personally, I find that I enjoy these moments.

For those on the outside whose only connection to BDSM is 50 Shades of Grey, this doesn’t make sense. The rule outside of BDSM is if someone hits you, you run away immediately and tell someone. Outside of BDSM, hitting someone, regardless of their gender, is abuse and should be stopped. However, the defining activity for BDSM isn’t being hit. The defining activity is consent and care.

First, all parties must consent to the activity. In some activity, saying “no” is part of the play. That’s why we have safe words. When the safe word is given, all play stops. That’s the rule. Because the play can be edgy and there is an opportunity for damage, both physical and emotional, both parties have to be clear in their willingness to play.

Second, care is taken by both parties in the play. The sub has an obligation to ensure that the Dom understands what they want or need. Yes, many of us subs actually want and need a spanking. I could go into the whys of that but that’s a whole other discussion. The Dom, on the other hand, has an obligation to ensure that the sub is safe physically and emotionally.

There you have your 10 minute sound bite into the world of BDSM. I could talk about consent violation and communication and false allegations. I won’t. Let me tell you, there are opportunities for things to go wrong in BDSM but things can, and do, go wrong in vanilla play as well so let’s not put a burden on BDSM that doesn’t belong there. I’m very open about my own experiences in BDSM and am happy to answer questions. All I ask is that you take a look at it with an open mind. It’s just sex.

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