Hey guys, we’ve got another guest blogger here to talk to you about kink and what it means to explore your sexuality through kink safely.  Give our writer some love!

So, as guest blogger of the day, I’m going to be talking about kink and fetishism (a subject quite dear to my heart).  Be warned: the sources I link to are NSFW!

At this point, pop culture has done a great job familiarizing the American populace with bondage, dominatrix dungeons, and sexual role play.  These well-publicized types of play are just the tip of the iceberg to the sprawling

world of kink and fetish.

A fetish is just about any sexual desire that doesn’t directly relate to sex.  If you’re unclear as to what it is, remember

that the most common fetish in the US today is large breasts – a fetish so taken for granted that it’s hard to even realize that it is one.  Another one that is frequently assumed to be universal is mud/pudding wrestling – for whatever reason, the sight of two women rolling around in a thick liquid is obviously sexy, which is puzzling if you’re like me and don’t

share that particular turn-on.

Being kinky is itself a tough experience.  Many cultures discourage any deviation from the sexual norms.  US cop dramas in particular love to skewer all the perverts with their crazy fetishes, with even the otherwise open-minded show Bones declaring that fetishism cannot lead to a happy, healthy relationship.  Even if you get past these harmful

cultural messages, there’s the way that some fetishes (like domination and submission) can conflict with one’s own ideals for sex and gender equality.  If you’re kinky, it’s important to remember that having a fetish is not a bad thing – it’s how you act upon it.  It’s all about finding out how to enact your fetish safely and ethically.

If you’re thinking about adding some kinky play into your relationship, then please, PLEASE do some research on what

you’re planning to do.  To take a common example: bondage is great fun, but it becomes significantly less fun if you tied the ropes

wrong and your partner gets dangerously constricted from additional pressure.  Make sure that you understand the risks (physical or psychological!) of whatever you’re trying, and do some reading to educate yourself on the safety measures necessary to ensure a fun and safe session of kinky play.

I recommend asking yourself the following questions before engaging in fetish play.  I hope you can forgive my implicit assumption that the relationship and play is confined to two people – it’s a grammatical convenience, not a condemnation of multi-person relationships.

1.       What am I getting out of this?
Understand what you want.  Are you looking for the adrenaline rush of dominance, the relaxing lull of submission?  Did you read up on something and decide you want to try, or is there some costume or action that just plain turns you on?  Knowing the essentials of your own desires will help you in the process.

2.       In the best case scenario, what will my partner get out of this play?
Remember that kink, like any part of a healthy relationship, involves more than just your own desires.  There is a flip side to every fetish, someone willing to receive what someone else wants to give – there’s an enjoyable side to each half of the encounter.  Figure out what that ideal enjoyable side is to determine how you can make your kinks palatable and enjoyable to your partner.

3.       What compromises and changes am I willing to make for my partner?
Let’s face it – chances are, your partner won’t necessarily be ready to engage in your ideal scenario down to the last detail.  Figure out what you’re willing to sacrifice to make the scene more comfortable, and also how you can incorporate your partner’s own desires.

4.       What risks are involved in this fetish, and what do I need to know to ensure my and my partner’s safety and well-being?
Is your intended fetish play dangerous at all?  Kinks like bondage, electrical play, and blood play involve physical risks – not even getting into high-risk kinks like suspension, which requires a high degree of skill and knowledge to prevent injury.  Kinks like dominance & submission, humiliation, pet role play, and doll play can delve right into mental cruelty if taken too far.  Some fetishes, like play rape, have the potential for both types of risk.  Not to mention the risk that you get too wrapped up in your kink and overly objectify your partner!  Do NOT take anything for granted – for example, hair-pulling is perfectly safe, but if you do it wrong you could be looking at unnecessary and unsafe levels of pain.  Get online and get an idea of how you can make your scenes and sessions safe and mutually enjoyable.

Above all – negotiate!  Talk with your partner about what you’d like to try.  Be open and honest, but don’t expect your partner to turn into a badass leather-clad dominatrix or a prancing pony overnight.  Set some limits and establish

rapport and trust before you step up to the games.

And for goodness’ sake, USE SAFEWORDS.  This goes for you non-kinky people, too!  Safewords are wonderful tools for

relationships that allow for strong, easily understood communication.  I recommend the “stoplight” system that is popular in the BDSM community – “yellow” to call a time-out in the event of a problem, “red” to put a stop to the encounter and re-establish safety and comfort, and “green” to say “I love that and want to do it again.”

Remember the two acronyms for kinky play: SSC and RACK.  SSC stands for “Safe, Sane, and Consensual” – this refers to fetish play that is well within the limits of safety.  Body worship, foot fetish, and role play are some common

examples.  RACK stands for “Risk Aware Consensual Kink” – this applies to fetish play that can have major physical

consequences, such as the ever-popular bondage and the much-publicized practice of breath play (erotic asphyxiation).  Both of these acronyms refer to the practice of creating a safe environment by making sure that you and your partner understand the risks of the kink inside and out to ensure informed consent.

So, as I keep imploring you to do some research, where can you go to find some info?

Wipipedia (http://www.londonfetishscene.com/wipi/index.php/Main_Page), the fetish wiki, is a great starter source –

as is Wikipedia itself, which to this day contains more up-to-date and detailed information on some fetishes that are woefully unrepresented at Wipi (I’m looking at you, erotic hypnosis).  Still, Wipi has some solid articles on SSC and RACK practices, among other great finds.

If you’re over 18, I STRONGLY recommend checking out Fet Life (fetlife.com), a social networking site for

kinksters.  It’s like Facebook, but without the creepy ads, violations of privacy, and annoying game ads – except that instead of your favorite books and movies, you list your fetishes and favorite sex acts!  Fet Life has groups dedicated to answering any questions you may have, with experienced kinksters on hand to give you advice and point you to more

specific sources of info.  And then there are the local munch groups, which provide open invitations to join fellow kinksters at munches (meet-and-greet dinner parties for kinky company), giving you both friendly encouragement and experienced advice when you proceed.

Special note: Even if you’re as vanilla as a white Tootsie Roll, munches are an awesome place to go to find open-minded and honest conversations about sex and sexuality – they’re set up to provide a safe, non-judgmental space for whoever chooses to enter.  If you keep an open mind yourself, you will probably have a great time meeting new people.  There

aren’t enough events and places where you can talk frankly about sexuality, and munches provide the right atmosphere to relax and be your sexual self.

So this has been a starter article to get you thinking and encourage you to look for as much information as you can.  I in

tend to follow this up with some exploration of some common kinks, such as domination & submission and bondage.  Have fun and stay safe!

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