Kink and BDSM 101 by Momentum Intimacy

Hello #MomentumLovers! 

While most people are aware of kink’s existence these days – and may have dabbled in kink themselves – there’s still plenty of confusion about what kink and BDSM actually are, and how they can be explored, not only by bossy dominatrixes and wealthy Christian Grey types, but by average folks as well.

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Here’s a basic, 101-level introduction to kink, BDSM, and related concepts, for those who are curious!

The term kinkencompasses a nearly infinite variety of erotic or exciting activities and interests that fall outside the realm of “traditional” sex. Sex that is “vanilla” – i.e. non-kinky – tends to include conventional sexual activities such as kissing, oral sex, penetrative sex, anal sex, hand sex, or grinding; any sexual activity or desire that ventures beyond this menu of sensations could be considered kinky.

Some kinks are physical acts, like spanking, tickling, or biting. Some kinks are the fetishization of specific body parts, like feet or armpits, or specific objects, like leather boots or lipstick. Some kinks are more about the headspaces or psychological effects they conjure, such as humiliation play, fear play, or erotic hypnosis. Some kinks are about personas or interpersonal dynamics, such as those incorporating discipline, dominance and submission, or any kind of roleplay.

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BDSM, on the other hand, is a term that refers to a specific subset of kinks. It’s an acronym that includes some of the best-known and most popular kinky proclivities: bondage, discipline, dominance, submission, sadism, and masochism. More-or-less everything you’ll see in a Fifty Shades of Grey movie, for example, falls under the banner of BDSM.

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Some kinksters use the terms D/s or power exchange to specifically reference the interplay between dominance and submission, themes that are central to many people’s kinks. Dominance involves controlling the action of a session and being “the boss,” while submission involves being directed and/or bossed around. That said, contrary to popular belief, not every kink session needs to involve a dominant and a submissive – many kinky activities can be explored in a totally power-neutral way, if it’s the action itself that turns you on, not the social dynamics associated with it. In those cases, sometimes the terms top and bottom are used; the top is the person giving sensations (e.g. wielding a flogger), while the bottom is the person receiving sensations (e.g. being flogged). A person can be a top without being a dominant, or vice versa; one can also be a bottom without being a submissive. Kink is whatever you want it to be!

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Naturally, consent is a crucial concept that must be fully grasped by any burgeoning kinkster – or any sexually active person, for that matter – before they’ll be able to play safely. A commonly-promoted framework in the kink community is called risk-aware consensual kink (RACK), which dictates that all kinky play must be carefully pre-negotiated so that participants can be fully aware of the risks involved in what they plan to do, and can decide which activities are and are not on the table. For example, to take a RACK-based approach to wax play (the dripping of hot wax from a lit candle onto the skin for pain and pleasure), you’d have to discuss with your partner beforehand which body parts should be avoided, what fire safety measures you have on hand, and what you’ll do if an injury occurs. Planning this stuff in advance makes everything thereafter not only safer but also freer and more fun, because kinky creativity is easiest to channel when you know you’re as safe as you can be.

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One way kinksters ensure ongoing consent during play is by pre-establishing a safeword. This is a particular word or phrase that will signal, when spoken by anyone involved, that the session should end immediately. It should ideally be a word that is memorable, easy to say and to discern over other sounds, and unlikely to be mentioned for any other reason. “Banana” and “cinnamon” would make great safewords, for example. Some people prefer to use a stoplight system in lieu of a safeword, where green means “I’m fine, please continue,” yellow means “I need you to slow down, pause, and/or check in with me,” and red means “Stop immediately.”

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With all this info under your belt, you’re ready to start brainstorming kinky scenarios to try out with a partner, or even on your own! What do you think you’ll try first?

Thank you for reading this #MomentumLovers! 


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