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BDSM Terms

(From ‘How to Be Kinky’ by Morpheous)

Abuse: When the power dynamic is non-consensual.

Aftercare: The time after a play session where the partners calm down, chill out and cuddle. It is a great time to be supportive and help each other come back in touch with reality.

BDSM: Bondage and Discipline, Dominance and Submission, Sadism and Masochism

Bondage: Securing someone with rope, cuffs, rubber, plastic wrap, chains or other restraints.

Bottom: Looks like a submissive, but like the Top he or she can just be playing a role when required.

Boundaries: Established limits as to what you will or will not do. Involves “soft” and “hard” limits.

Cat-o’nine-tails: Multi-tailed whip with weighted or knotted ends, traditionally used as a Naval punishment instrument.

Consent: Approval or permission freely given in a context for someone to engage in a particular activity without coercion. Informed consent is consent freely given beforehand and being fully aware of the conditions and consequences of the activity.

Dom/me: Man or woman who takes control.

Dominant: Someone who assumes the dominant role in sex or playtime. One who has a desire to control or have power over another in playtime.

Edge Play: Play between partners that you might see at an event that will be beyond your own comfort level and can have an element of danger involved: fire, knives, etc.

Hard Limit: What someone absolutely will not do. Not negotiable.

Insertables: Anything inserted into a bodily opening ~ i.e. the ass, pussy or mouth ~ for sexual purposes. Butt plugs, dildos ~ all insertables should be covered with a condom before play.

Lifestyle: Referring to involvement in BDSM i.e. “How long have you been in the lifestyle?”

Masochism: The act of receiving pain for sensual/sexual pleasure.

Master or Mistress: Someone who identifies with a lifestyle choice to dominate someone (a slave) 24/7, in a Total Power Exchange

Milking: Stimulating a male’s prostate with a finger or dildo to produce an orgasm. Also refers to causing him to orgasm repeatedly until he is unable to produce any more ejaculate.

Pervertable: Everyday, household objects like clothespins or candles that can be “converted or perverted” for kinky play.

Percussion Play: Using an instrument designed to strike with force, typically a flogger, belt or cane.

Power Exchange: A defining characteristic of BDSM best described as “eroticism based on a consensual exchange of power.”

Sadism: The act of administering pain for sensual/sexual pleasure.

Safe word: A code word that has been previously agreed upon to slow down or stop a scene. Red means stop, Yellow means slow down.

Slave: Someone committed to the lifestyle of BDSM, putting his or her entire being in her Master or Mistress’s care and control.

Soft Limits: Something that someone is hesitant or nervous about doing but would like to try if they feel they are safe with you. For these people you need to go slow.

Subspace: A “natural high” or endorphin rush that a sub can get during a scene

Sub Drop: A physical condition sometimes experienced by a submissive after an intense session of BDSM play, best prevented by providing aftercare immediately following the session.

Submissive: Someone who likes to be sexually submissive or passive. The receiving person from a Top or Dominant or Switch. Can also be service oriented without any overt sexual activity. The person that surrenders control either during a scene or all the time to another during erotic play.

Switch: These are sexual beings that can play the Top or bottom and move fluidly between the two at any given time.

Top: Someone who can play the dominant role when required, usually only for certain situations, regardless or his or her orientation.

Top Drop: Similar to “Sub Drop” but can affect a Dominant or Top after a scene. Feelings of guilt are commonly associated with it and aftercare helps counteract this.

Training: Refers to either a short or ongoing period of time in which the Dom/me teaches the sub how to act in a specific situation. Can either be playful or serious, depending on the couple.

Trigger: An emotional/mental or physical activity that causes a distinct reaction.