How To Ease Into BDSM

When it comes to sexual fantasies or experiences that we want to try, a lot of people are curious about S&M or BDSM — bondage, domination, sadism, and masochism. But even though most of us are generally familiar with the idea of BDSM and what it might entail, it can still be incredibly intimidating. There aren’t just the toys and the gear that you so often see in pop culture, there’s also its own jargon and its own community. It’s easy to feel like it’s a club that you don’t know anything about. But if you’re interested, it’s actually easier to get into than you might think.

The most important things to remember when it comes to BDSM are trust, safety, and communication. From discussing the possibility with a partner to actually taking part in a scene, these three elements should always be there. They’re your mantra.

Once you have those in mind, here’s how you can get started.

1. Watch porn for some ideas

Firstly, if you’re totally new to the idea, then checking out porn can be a great learning tool. Now, you might not want to jump right into the hardcore BDSM stuff — because you will see things that you cannot unsee. There’s some reeeeal stuff happening out there. But searching for some more gentle S&M to start with will give you a good idea of where to start. Bellesa has a great “Bondage” category if you’re looking to ease in!

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2. Find a partner with which you feel safe

Safety first — and that can mean a few different things. Firstly, you want to find somebody you can trust. If you have a long-term partner then it will probably be them, but if not you want to find someone you feel safe with. If you’re looking for guidance, you may also want to seek out someone with a little more experience in the arena than you do — but only if you feel sure that they will use that knowledge respectfully. Work out a safe word (yes, they’re real things) and discuss your limits beforehand. You want every step to feel safe and consensual. Going into your first experience with a plan can be really helpful.

3. Don’t be afraid to ask questions

If you’re looking for props or toys to help you start — or if you’re just curious — try heading to a sex toy shop and asking what they recommend. Not only do they tend to be some of the friendliest people out there, they’ve also seen everything under the sun, so there’s really nothing to be embarrassed about. Or you can look for information about BDSM online, there’s usually a friendly community of people ready to answer your questions.

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4. Avoid alcohol

This one might seem like a surprise, but it makes a lot of sense. “Yes, I know you get braver after a few drinks,” Miranda Kane, a former dominatrix tellsthe Metro. “I know it sounds sexy to do it all when you’re full of Dutch courage but it’s not safe, and I promise you it’s not half as enjoyable as when you get to look back on it and remember it all – that feeling of power, or submission – with full clarity.” It will also make sure that you’re both feeling safe and secure at all times.

5. Start slow

You may have fantasies of some extreme S&M in mind that you’re just desperate to live out, but it’s really important to take it slow. What you like in theory may be very different from what you end up liking in reality — and sometimes, you don’t know that something is too much until you get there. So ease into it, checking in with your partner every step of the way. Starting with some light bondage, like one of you being tied up, or some gentle spanking is a great way to begin slowly. And remember, you can always build up the intensity later.

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6. Try subbing and domming

Even though you might have a fantasy about being a sub or a dom, you don’t know what’s really going to tickle your fancy until you get there — some people like both, after all. Keep ridiculous gender stereotypes at bay and try a little everything — don’t be afraid to explore.

7. Keep it fun

Finally, keep it fun. People often use the word “play” in BDSM for a reason. You should ultimately be having a great time. When you work out a scene, especially early on, leave room to play and discover each other’s turn-ons, likes, and dislikes. Even though parts of BDSM can seem very serious to the outside — and it can be seriously sexy — don’t lose sight of the playful.

BDSM can feel like a totally unknown world if you’ve never tried it before — but, if you’re curious, that shouldn’t stop you. There are plenty of ways to start to get involved and you should never be embarrassed to ask questions. Just keep the communication going and make sure that there’s always trust and safety. Oh — and have fun.

Originally posted on Bellesa Collective