1/31/2009

A Survey of Abuse and Mental Illness in BDSM

The more I've participated in the online BDSM community, the more intrigued I've become by the way many victims of abuse or mental illness seem to use BDSM as a way to heal and bond. It is as though BDSM activities give them a chance to re-play, re-act, and re-do terrible wrongs, and reimagine them in ways that are safer, healthier, and saner.

While I knew some people found strength and healing through their BDSM activities through their online posts, I wondered how prevelant this attitude was. I asked the members of Fetlife, an online community of kinksters, to take my online survey. In particular, I asked past victims of abuse or documented mental illness, especially submissive females. This survey in no way attempts to imply a relationship between abuse and BDSM (e.g., that all kinksters were abused as children) because such an inference is clearly stereotypical and over-generalized. In addition, a cursory glance at any BDSM community disproves this assumption. In fact, actual studies done (by scientists and doctors) on BDSMers indicate they tend to be emotionally healthy, and they come from more highly educated and professionally successful sections of the population than average. Those this survey does seek out those members of the BDSM community who also happen to be from abusive or troubled pasts, and ask them how--if at all--the world of BDSM has helped them cope and heal.

In a four-week period, 103 people took my online survey. Answers to individual questions are charted and discussed below.

94% of respondents were female and 6% were male. This refers to the original biological sex of respondents, not to orientation or gender.

The following shows the age breakdown of the respondents: As you can see, no one under 18 or over 65 responded to the survey. As for the nationality (see below), 71% were American, 13% Canadian, 1% Latino/Hispanic, 7% European, 1% African, 8% other, and 0% Middle Eastern or Asian.

How much education do you have? (Percentages are shown on the lower line.)



Were you abused as a child? 71% yes, 24% no, 5% unsure.If you were abused, what type of abuse was it? (More than one answer per person is possible.) Emotional abuse was the most preveland at 64%, sexual next at 55%, 37% physical.



If you were abused as a child, who abused you? The most common answer was one of the parents (father 47% and mother 41%) with acquaintance or extended family member the next two most common.
Were you abused as an adult? Interestingly, more respondents were abused as adults (over the age of 18) than as children, with 80% having been abused as adults (compared to 71% who were abused as children).



If you were abused, what type(s) of abuse did you encounter? Once again, emotional abuse was the most prevalent form of abuse for adults. This is interesting as it is much less documented in the media than sexual and physical abuse.



If you were abused, who abused you? For adults, far fewer were abused by a parent or extended family members, while the rate of abuse by strangers and coworkers/bosses rose. By far the most common type of abuse, however, was abuse from a significant other (58%) or spouse (35%).
At what age did you begin BDSM activities?


How would you describe your BDSM lifestyle?

How would you identify yourself? ("Top" is a broad, general term encompassing Masters, Doms, Mistresses, Dommes, Trainers, Daddies, Mommies, sadists, and more; "bottom" refers to their corresponding partners, and "switch" means you identify as both roles.)



If there is a power dynamic to your BDSM activities, which role or roles do you identify with? (Individual respondents could have checked more than one answer.)


Is there a power/control dynamic in your BDSM relationship?


Which BDSM activities do you most often engage in?
How would you describe your current BDSM relationship? (The first response truncated; it was "partnered for a lifetime.")

Do you believe past abuse made you more or less drawn to BDSM? This answer was a short essay, so there is no data available. Some said it made them more drawn to BDSM, such as being controlled, dominated, hit, hurt or raped. Some said it made them less drawn to BDSM, because the same activities reminded them too much of the abuse. Some said they were abused, but it had no effect whatsoever; they are entirely separate issues.

Have you been diagnosed with a mental disorder? 78% yes, 15% no, 8% I believe I have one, but have never been medically diagnosed. *Note: an official diagnosis by a certified professional is the only way to ascertain whether or not one suffers from a mental illness.



Have you been diagnosed with depression? 79% of people surveyed responded yes. This is interesting since only 78% said they had been diagnosed with a mental disorder, and depression is a specific type of mental disorder. Indeed it is the most common of all mental illnesses. The other two options were "no" or "I believe I am depressed but have not been medically diagnosed."


What conditions have you been medically diagnosed with? 72% depression, 43% anxiety disorder, 15% panic disorder, 14% bipolar disorder, 27% PTSD, 2% schizophrenia, 3% multiple personality disorder, 20% other. It is interesting 79% said they had been diagnosed with depression in the previous question, but only 72% had been diagnosed with it here. Also, please remember that mental disorders can often (but not always) be found together, so an individual respondent may have checked more than one diagnosed disorder. "Other" responses included Borderline Personality Disorder, OCD, ADHD, and GID. It should be noted ADHD is not a mental disorder but developmental disorder.
How would you say past abuses and disorders have affected your BDSM lifestyle? The scale given was 1-5, 1 being "not at all" and 5 being "a lot." As you can see, most people were fairly neutral in their responses. Many more people reported being completely unaffected by issues of abuse or mental illness than reported being affected by it a lot. In fact, only 9 of the 103 people surveyed said their past history affected their BDSM life "a lot" (under 10%, although up to 80% had been abused and up to 79% had some sort of mental disorder).


How much do you believe BDSM has allowed you to heal from past traumas? Again, most people surveyed said not at all or were fairly neutral; the least number of people reported it allowed them to heal a lot.


Results
In all, this study found some people who were drawn to BDSM after abuse and some who were repelled by it. Some said their BDSM experiences made it easier to heal and some said it had no effect at all. Some said they became tops after abuse or disorders and others became bottoms.
Like any other community, the BDSM community is eclectic, one of varied personalities, ages, cultures, backgrounds, and beliefs. This survey has proved nothing and claims nothing, but I hope you've found the information within interesting nonetheless. My sincere gratitude to the BDSM community members who participated in this survey.

1/29/2009

Review: Babeland's Pocket Rocket

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If you are in a quandary about what to get your honey or BFF for Valentine's Day, Babeland has your answer. Try one of their best-selling vibes or dildos, get a romantic lover's kit, or warm up with some of their sexy foreplay essentials (lubes, massage oils, books, and bondage toys).

For a sweet gift under $30, I've tried out the Pocket Rocket. The first time I turned it on, the Pocket Rocket shot up to #2 on my list of Favorite Vibes Ever (second only to the unbeatable Orchid G, also from Babeland). This tiny vibe packs a punch!

The rocket vibe is only 4" long, which I love because I'm currently a resident in France and I honestly have nightmares about having to bring all my sexy toys home through customs (*internal groan*). This vibe is the first one that made me bring a sigh of relief--it will go through customs no problem. Tiny and discreet, the vibrator comes in a small box that will be disguised perfectly in your cosmetics bag as a lipstick or hand cream. If you have roommates, travel a lot, or have a nosy mother, this discreet vibe is for you!

Although the Pocket Rocket is small, its vibe packs a punch. It only comes with one speed, but I enjoyed it nonetheless--the vibration is much stronger and more intense than you'd expect from such a small toy. Since I enjoy stronger vibrations (ever since my Orchid G got me hooked), this toy was fantastic. It turned me on immediately and felt great. While I have yet to experience an orgasm with this toy, I still really enjoy the feel and find it great for foreplay. And practice makes perfect!

Another small innovation I loved was the cap-on, cap-off possibility. The plastic cap has nubs and can be used for a different pleasure sensation than the actual vibe, which gives a more intense feeling (I preferred with the cap). The plastic cap is a bit too hard for my taste, but this can be solved by holding it very lightly against the skin. If you like a lot of pressure, the cap is going to give you problems, so use it without!

The vibe uses a AA battery; I prefer vibes that can work on AA because the toys I have that work on N or watch batteries are a horrible pain to replace. The bottom section of the vibe twists off for easy battery insertion, but putting the section back on is another matter entirely. I had quite a terrible problem getting the bottom to stick back on without popping right back off. While this was annoying, eventually I did manage to shove the thing back together and it worked fine.


This vibe doesn't compare with my undying devotion to my Orchid G, but it is still a fun, discrete toy with a strong vibration. The petite, manageable size and easy-to-disguise discretion of the vibe make it a unique purchase.

If you're interested, go to Babeland and check out the Pocket Rocket ($28) and other sweet V-day gifts.

1/27/2009

Examples of M/s and D/s Contracts

Many BDSMers in M/s (Master/slave) and D/s (Dominant/slave) relationships have contracts or rules. These can be rules the couple agrees on together or rules a Master has that he gives to potential slaves; the slave decides if she wants to be bound to this Master and these rules and makes her decision. Of course, contracts for slaves are often more stringent and strict than for submissives, who keep some control over their own lives and often choose in which areas they will submit.

Below are two examples of rules. The first, Rules for Submissives, was a list of rules created and agreed upon by a D/s couple. Both parties agree to follow these rules and change or add more as the future requires it. The second, Rules for Slaves, is a list of rules by a Master. He provides this list for potential slaves, and, if they agree to them, they are accepted into his servitude and protection. Please note that in the M/s version of rules, the slave's name and use of "i" are always lowercase. This is a common method used in some M/s and D/s relationships to mirror the submission of the sub or slave.
Rules for Submissives (D/s relationship)

1. Wait for Master to open all doors and car doors (getting out and getting in). Exceptions are okay with sets of two doors when there are people behind me waiting; I can open the door for them or step aside and wait.

2. Don't walk ahead of him in public (outside), walk beside him or slightly behind if necessary.
Inside buildings, I go first and he will put his hand on the small of my back to guide me.

3. At restaurants, Master will order for both of us. *exceptions: when my family is around.

4. The sub is not permitted to be alone at home with non-related males. In public, she has to check in with Master every hour, with phone contact before and after. Master has final say in which people she can spend time with. She can ask Master's permission for exceptions in specific cases. This rule applies to Master as well.

5. In public, the word "Now" signifies Master wants to begin a scene. In this case, the sub must obey and begin scene. Once every 6 months, she may opt not to participate in a public scene; she will indicate this by saying, "Veto." Master will accept this without punishment or anger.

6. When guests are over and a scene is ongoing, if Master asks her to serve the guests (barring sexual acts), the sub must obey within 3 seconds.

7. Every other day, the sub must journal her feelings, thoughts, fantasies, and concerns on her private blog for Master; he will not judge or punish her for her blogs. Every week, the sub must upload a poem, erotica, or porn photo/video she has made for Master.

8. Say please and thank you during punishments, for commands, and requests.

9. Safe words can be used by either party. For the sub, "I can't" is to be used literally; all other declinations will be ignored. It is Master's responsibility to check in periodically with the sub and ask her if she is all right or to rate her pain level on 1-10.

10. Master and the sub will both participate in aftercare every time. Master will attend to the sub's needs by any means necessary or available (blankets, treats, water, etc.).

11. The sub must ask permission to move, change positions, leave, or use the restroom.

12. When Master makes a request, the sub must obey promptly (within 3 seconds) or she will be punished.

13. No whining or sulking. The sub gets one warning per session and three seconds to fix it. These are punishable offenses.

14. The sub must ask permission before touching Master with her hands or mouth. She must say thank you after permission has been granted and before touching Master.

15. The sub can speak at any time, but she may be punished for what she says.

16. The sub may address Master, but she must keep her eyes lowered submissively.

17. To receive instructions or lectures, the sub will kneel on the floor with her ankles crossed, hands folded on her lap, and head lowered, without figeting; she will not move until Master commands her to get up.

18. Punishments will be administered immediately (within 60 seconds) at home, and immediately after returning home when in public.

19. When punishment is necessary, Master will devise a punishment. If the sub believes a punishment is too much, she has the right to request 2 choices and she may choose the one she prefers.

Rules for Slaves (M/s relationship)

1) i submit to the will of my Master and i’m bound to Him. i accept His authority over me for my purpose is to serve, obey and please my Master. i will be managed, disciplined and controlled in a manner beneficial to my training and long-term service and inclusion in his household as a slave.

2) i accept that part of training is the actual physical control of my behavior. i will have no privacy from my Master.

3) Communication with my Master is one of the most important aspects of my development as a slave. a) i am responsible for answering each and every e-mail sent to me by my Master and when not in His presence, i will send Him at least one e-mail or contact Him each and every day. b) i must be both specific and explicit in my speech. i will give complete and accurate answers to each and every question that my Master asks of me. i am allowed no secrets from my Master. i will work hard to welcome this openness of body, mind and soul.

4) To receive pleasure i must earn it. i must always give thanks to my Master for all i am given immediately after receiving it, for such things are gifts or privileges granted to me by Him. This also includes any punishment and discipline that i may receive so that I may grow in bondage and serve him better.5) i will not hesitate in my obedience to my Master and will respond quickly to all orders given.

6) I willingly discuss any issues I have with my Master that limits by trust. my goal is to trust my Master and know His concern for my total safety that includes my emotional, psychological, social, sexual, and physical health.

7) i will work hard to give my Master control and turn my will over to Him. i know this is my duty as His slave and i desire to serve and please Him by doing so.


8) i am always in submission to my Master whether He is present or not, ready to please Him at any time, in any place, under any circumstances, regardless of who may be present. His pleasure is more important than my discomfort.

9) When i am not in the presence of my Master and i have choices to make - i will perform them to the best of my abilities and within the boundaries and guidance He has established for me. If someone speaks ill of my Master, i will defend Him and report this to my Master immediately.

10) The opportunity to please my Master is very important to me. i will seek out opportunities to do so. my greatest felt satisfaction is realized when i know i have pleased my Master. There can be no greater pain or suffering i can feel than when my Master is not pleased with me. i will accept the guidance i will need to be put back on track so that i will be forgiven and once again be pleasing to Him.


11) i will learn all the positions my Master wants to teach me to the best of my abilities and when display myself to him using them . i know that by using the slave positions i am enabling by Master to better manage and use his slave.

12) my entire sexual being now belongs to my Master. my Master is in complete charge of my sexual desires and i wish that He mold them in a way that is most pleasing to Him. i am a sexual and sensual being and my entire body is to be available for my Master’s use at all times. It is my Master’s choice as to how my sexual being will be used to please him.
a) i must never reach orgasm without explicit permission from my Master. My failure to receive permission before cumming will cause me to endure the punishment Master will put upon me. Such pleasure must be seen as a privilege so that i do not take advantage of it.

b) i will never touch my breasts, nipples, pussy or clit with my hands or sex toys in any manner where i could experience sexual or sensual pleasure without permission from my Master. i fully acknowledge that i no longer have ownership of my sexual being.

13) The safeword given to me by my Master can be spoken at any time - even When i have been told to be silent. If i am not able to verbalize it – i trust my Master will show me how i can express it. Safewords are for my protection as well as His.

14) i shall never think of myself as a weak person for it takes a strong female to commit to the drive inside me, to serve, to obey and to please a Master.

15) i know that other than any hard limits and safeword that he grants this slave, i can make no demands or place limits on my Master's authority. i can give Him no orders. i don’t control his time or who he chooses to give his attention too. i know that attempts, by me, to limit His power, control or status as a Master would lead to me being punished.

16) my health is important to my Master. i will eat properly. i want to be healthy and of sound mind and body, free as possible of any personal limitations, when pleasing my Master. i can not refuse my Master's decision that i seek medical attention, if so ordered. If placed on a diet by my Master, i will obey His decisions as to my method of weight loss and make routine reports to Him as to my progress. After losing the weight my Master requires, i will maintain the weight that pleases Him.
17) i will not date others or form a relationship with others without permission from my Master. i will not communicate with other Masters without my Master's permission. This includes in person, telephone, instant messaging or e-mail. i will report all contact directly and quickly to my Master. My Master makes the decision as to what types of contact i am allowed to have with other Masters. My Master can deny, grant or terminate any communication i have with others when he wishes.
18) Punishment Rules: i know my Master has the right to discipline or punish me any time He wishes for any violation. i will submit to any discipline or punishment my Master sees fit. i know that i will be punished or disciplined for violations of the rule, both written and oral, in order to correct my behavior and to insure He find me pleasing. The punishment will fit the violation that i have committed. my Master shall determine how and when and where i am to receive this punishment.i have the right to plead for a lesser punishment, but my Master is under no obligation to grant a reduced punishment.

19) i worship my Master. i worship my Master's whip, respect my Master's right to use it for His pleasure and my punishment.

20) my mouth is for my Masters pleasure. i will learn that:
a) my mouth will be used as my Master wishes for His pleasure. b) i will work hard to provide complete pleasure with my mouth. When my Masters dick is put into my mouth and i am directed to suck it - i will do so as long as i am required to do so. When told to, my hands shall be placed on the tops of my thighs, behind my neck or held at the base of my back so that during the sucking i can use my whole body to display my hunger to my Master. i will not restrict my Master's view of me. c) i worship my Master's dick, its head and its shaft, especially when it is hard or when i am given the opportunity to make it hard for Him d) my Master's cum must never go to waste - i will swallow His cum as it is a gift an honor to receive it.

21) i must always wear revealing and sexy clothing of good taste around my Master unless given permission to do otherwise. The clothing i wear will allow easy access to my pussy, ass and breasts. my basic attire in the presence of my Master shall always include a collar given to me by my Master. i must never be concerned when i feel too much of my flesh is showing, however i can ask my Master for permission as to how to handle my discomfort. In public, i am to wear a dress or skirt without panties around my Master. i must remove all of my clothing in the way i have been taught when my Master commands of me to do so.

22) i must sleep in the nude and wear the collar provided by my Master.

1/26/2009

Chastity Belts + Lock = Evil Fun!



Chastity belts--available online and in kink/bondage stores--are just another way evil Doms can have kinky fun with their hapless subs! Chastity belts (built on the old-fashioned idea of chastity but made with newer and better technology!) come anywhere from $19-350, are available for both men and women, can be locked or not, and can be used for control play for one short scene or for months at a time.

Intrigued? Read on.

If you want to play with chastity, there are some benefits. The first and main one is control. This is just another way for the Dom to control the sub--sort of like bondage for the genitals! Teasing and torturing goes that much farther when the sub can't reach his or her genitals! Chastity is also a great idea for long-distance relationships or even when one of you is away for the weekend; this way you KNOW he isn't playing with himself when you're not around! You and only you have control over when and how your sub receives sexual pleasure.

Have a new chastity belt but not sure how to incorporate it into your play? Here is a new Scene Idea to tickle your fancy:

Lock your sub up in a chastity belt with a key. Keep the key in a safe, locked in your car, or somewhere else locked with a key. Set a certain amount of time, like a month (more or less, if you like) that your sub must wear the chastity belt. Every month, play this devious little game with your sub (we'll pretend he's male, but of course this will work with either sex!):

Lock him in his chastity cage and tell him he can try once for his freedom every month (or whatever). Be sure to tease him lots in between so his sexual arousal is high! When the time has come for him to try his monthly bid at genital freedom, give him this task to complete:
  • Handcuff his ankles together. Handcuff his wrists and lock them to his collar. This way, he can only crawl on his elbows and knees.
  • Tell him where you have hidden three keys: the first for his ankle cuffs, the second for his wrists, and the third to the safe or wherever you've locked the key to his chastity cage.
  • Freeze the keys in a block of ice or other liquid.
  • Set the three keys in a place where he will have to strain to get them, but it's possible. For example, put the first one in a doggie dish on the main floor. Put the second one up or down stairs (so he has to get his ankle cuffs removed before he can get there).
  • Set a timer and tell him to go. Watch him scramble to get the keys and unmelt them in time!
  • If he gets all three keys before the timer goes off, he has won and can use the final key to unlock his chastity cage. If he does not, he can try again next month.

Helpful tips:

  • if you have a safe with a locked timer, that's even better. Set the safe to lock in 6 minutes and let him scramble to get there before the safe locks itself.
  • freeze the key into something other than water: you can make frozen ice from soda, Koolaid, fruit juices, or even cum.
  • for a fun twist, don't freeze the keys in anything, but don't tell him where you've hidden them. Enjoy watching him crawl frantically around the house.
  • Hold the last key yourself, and rather than having it frozen so he has to melt it, make the last "task" that he must bring you to orgasm before he receives the key. Adjust the timer accordingly so he has a sporting chance.
  • Be fair with the amount of time you give him and how possible it is to find and unmelt the keys: it should be difficult, but not impossible, for him to succeed.
  • for long-term forced chastity, be sure to get a chastity cage that allows for good hygiene and easy washing through the cage.

1/25/2009

Review: Leather Cuffs


For the BDSMer with a flair for fashion, these scalloped cuffs from Babeland are a must-buy! My Dom and I adored them--they are so much fun!


First, let's talk about the product. Then I'll tell you why I loved it.
These cuffs wrap around both wrists (there is no connecting link) and fasten with a rolling buckle, just like a belt. The cuffs are black leather on the outside, soft black synthetic fleece on the inside, with a red scalloped ridge for decoration. They measure 1.5" wide and only a few centimeters between each buckle hole ensures a comfortable fit.


I tried them out from the biggest to smallest size, and I can comfortably say these cuffs will fit anyone from petite to plus-size. On the largest setting, the cuffs went halfway up my Dom's forearm, and I think anyone's wrist will fit in there, whether plus-size men or women. I have very petite wrists, so I normally have a problem finding cuffs that fit me without gaping open, but with these scalloped cuffs I had no problem. They fit snugly and comfortably, and there was plenty of padding provided by the fleecy interior to ensure my small wrists did not get bruised during rough play.


My Dom and I loved these because they are sturdy enough for even the toughest play, yet still soft and comfy. Since he is stronger than I am, we had him yank and pull at the cuffs, but they didn't give an inch! When I was in them, I didn't have a chance of dislodging them. The cuffs are incredibly well made, with no rough spots or fraying edges, and even when writhing around in them you won't get chafed. This is a big improvement from normal metal handcuffs, which chafe and bruise with struggling.


I only found a few minor inconveniences with these cuffs. One is that you have to buy extra parts if you want to tie or chain your partner to anything. The D-ring will take a padlock, or with cuff connectors or chain you could tie your partner to something, but you'll have to buy them separately. Alone, the cuffs will immobilize your partner's hands but not connect to anything else. Another minor glitch is that you have to carefully loop the cuffs together and fasten the buckles. Obviously, this takes a willing, still submissive, and would be difficult if not impossible to subdue a sub who was struggling or fighting during play. Finally, because these cuffs are real leather, cleaning is a bit more difficult. You can wipe the leather off with a cloth, or spot-clean the fleece lining with a soapy washcloth, but you definitely can't just throw them in the washer or submerge them for cleaning. My advice: try not to sweat too much in them or get bodily fluids on them and avoid the problem.


So the final verdict on these scalloped cuffs from Babeland is: Awesome! We love the stylish black leather, soft inner lining, and firm grip of the cuffs. These cuffs will be a welcome addition to any kinkster's toy collection or a fun introduction to light bondage for beginners--everyone will love them! At only $52 from Babeland's site, these are a good investment for hours of play. The cuffs are so well-made and comfy that I wager my Dom and I will be using them in our BDSM adventures for years.


Mosey on over to Babeland.com and check our their Sportsheet's Scalloped Cuffs and other great deals.

1/23/2009

Using Punishments in Sub Training


Punishments are used to correct negative behavior. Of course, I'm assuming here that you have already begun training your sub, and she knows what is expected of her. The two of you should agree on your behaviors, what you expect of her, and the punishment she can expect if she does not obey. It's not fair to punish someone for something they didn't even know they were doing wrong. Your sub is human, and she will make mistakes! You must let her know it is okay to be human and make mistakes, and should not punish her for honest errors.


Your sub must know that you are going to enforce your training 100% of the time. Not 90%, not 98%, but 100% of the time. Threats do nothing but teach her she can get away with it next time.


Of course, if she did not know what you wanted, you should not punish her for your own lack of communication--admit your mistake, communicate it clearly, and move on. Subs aren't mind-readers! If she exhibits a behavior you dislike, but you had not mentioned it before, simply stop whatever you are doing, tell her you dislike the behavior and why, and clearly tell her what behavior you want and expect instead.


But what if your sub did know the expectation, but she forgot--or, more likely, was testing you? Then you should punish her. Punishment must be tailored to fit the slave. For example, whipping a slave who enjoys pain is not going to be an effective deterrent next time. Also, calling names or losing your temper is just going to make you look out of control and devestate your slave. Be calm and in control; tell your sub clearly what she did wrong, what the punishment will be, and then enact it. This can be anything from removing positive pleasures (orgasm, computer, car, tv, music, phone, etc.) to enforcing negative ones (whipping, standing in corner, bondage, sitting without talking for a certain amount of time, being shut in a closet alone to think about her behavior).


Please remember that punishments should make the bad behavior less desirable in the future--not to damage your sub or hurt her feelings. Many people go too far with punishments, meting out consequences that are too severe for the transgression. Tell her clearly beforehand how long the punishment will last--1 minute? 10? 20? Punishments should not go on for hours or days--that is emotional abuse.


A word of caution: if your sub has been abused before, be very careful with punishments. Make sure not to withdraw love as a punishment, because that only teaches the sub that she has to be perfect and not fail to earn your love. You never want your sub to feel your love is conditional! Denying sex, orgasm, quality time, cuddling, or ignoring your sub may work quite fine with someone who has never been abused, but will just teach an abuse victim that your love is conditional. The point of punishment is to be negative, but not devestating or abusive, and you must know your sub to see the difference. Ask yourself, are you correcting a behavior or are you wounding a soul? If your sub is a victim of past abuse, I recommend sitting down and discussing acceptable and nonacceptable punishments for her before you begin training.


Don't act angry when you punish your sub---she needs to know this is for her own good, not because you hate her or are angry with her. Remind her you love her and want the best for her, and that is why you give her consequences.


Many times, you can give your sub a choice. If she is creative and knows herself well, simply ask what she believes is a fair consequence. Discuss it together, and mutually agree on a consequence. If she has no ideas, you might try giving her a few options to choose from. Say, "You know better than that behavior, because we discussed it. Now you have to have a consequence. Would you rather write me a letter apologizing and explaining what you did wrong and what you will do better next time, or stand in the corner with your nose holding a ping-pong ball for 20 minutes?" This allows the sub to have some choice in her punishment, and you can avoid unwittingly pushing a button that triggers past abuse.


Ideas for punishments are:

  • bondage (be sure not in a tight position, and check regularly to feel her circulation)
  • whipping, paddling, or flogging
  • writing you a letter stating what she did wrong, how it made you feel, and how she will fix it next time
  • writing "I will not ________" so many times by hand
  • taking away her computer, phone, or car for a set amount of time
  • making her clean, scrub the floor, or some chore she dislikes
  • forcing her to perform a sexual act for you that you know she dislikes
  • make her exercise (you can do it with her)
  • give her healthy foods she doesn't like
  • tie her to the bed and leave her there for a set time (check on her often!)
  • verbally chastise her, telling her exactly what she did wrong
  • make her stand against the wall, holding a ping pong to the wall with her nose
  • make her stand in the corner
  • tie her up like a dog and force her to urinate on a tile floor (or in a bowl) like a dog, then clean it up
  • make her eat her meal off the floor with her hands or mouth
  • needle play
  • forced anal dildo or anal beads
  • put a speculum in her ass
  • put nipple clamps on her and yank her around

Punishment does not need to be mean and nasty to be effective. For example, if your sub knows it is a rule to address you as "Master" each time she speaks, and she does not, this is not as grievous a blunder as if she wrecks your car because she is mad at you. The punishment should fit the crime. A simple slap, short spanking, or letter of apology will suffice for smaller transgressions. Your sub is a smart, savvy lady--she is going to know if your punishment does not fit the crime and resent you for it. This defeats the purpose of correcting bad behavior.


Any parent can tell you that sometimes a long discussion about "choices" will deter a behavior just as well or better than physical forms of punishment. With animals, we have to physically punish them because we cannot speak to them; with your sub and other people, a conversation can do wonders!


Before or after your punish your sub, you must just want to have a conversation with her. Why is she doing this behavior? What triggered it? How is she feeling? What was she hoping to achieve? Does she realize it was wrong? Is she sorry? How can she make it up to you? How will she ensure the same mistake doesn't happen again in the future?


Often, subs are disobeying for many reasons. You may find she did not understand what you wanted. Perhaps she simply forgot part of her training because she was concentrating on something else (like sex!). If she did do it on purpose, there could be a multitude of reasons. Psychologically, there are many reasons subs resist change:



  • she feels threatened by change

  • you are challenging her core beliefs, values, or ideas

  • it feels strange and alien to try this new lifestyle, actions, and thoughts

  • she does not fully trust you

  • she is afraid she will get hurt

  • she thinks you may not be able to handle training and controlling her

  • she does not see the point of this training or how it will benefit her

  • she resists giving up her freedom to you

  • she resents her loss of choice/freedom

  • her individuality feels threatened

Be patient and understanding. It is natural for her to feel flooded by many negative emotions as you change her lifestyle. When you need to use punishment, do so, but remember that for every negative consequence or remark, she needs 4 positive rewards and compliments.


Keep your sub's best interests at heart, talk to her openly, ask her opinions, and enjoy!

1/22/2009

Training a Sub

Sub or slave training is just what the term suggests: you are training your partner to be a full-time submissive or slave. Often, this requires changing expectations, behaviors, values, habits, and attitudes of the sub. If the two of you decide to enter a D/s or M/s (BDSM relationships with a control dynamic, standing for Dominant/submissive and Master/slave or Mistress/slave), whether 24/7 or not, this puts a lot of responsibility on the Dom and a lot of stress on the sub. Expect this.

First, the Dom must have a clear idea of how to train his (or her) sub. What do you want out of this relationship? Why? How will both of your needs get met? You also need to have a strong personality and good leadership abilities. You need the skills to plan, set goals, and see them through. If you do not possess these skills, your training will not be a success.

It is a good idea to sit down and write out a list of what you want from this controlled relationship, both for you and your sub. For example: you may want closer intimacy, sexual gratification, control, power, the satisfaction of being pampered and served, the ability to freely hurt and use another human being, etc. For your sub, you may want her to feel secure, loved, and adored, to grow closer to God, to heal from past abuse, to become less shy or selfish, to know you will never leave her, etc.

Once you have these goals set out for this relationship, how will you achieve this? How will this benefit you and your sub? What behaviors, attitudes, and thoughts will need to change to achieve this? How will you change these behaviors? What negative and positive reinforcements will be particularly effective on your sub? How can you give her what she needs? How will the two of you communicate clearly about your needs, thoughts, and feelings during this ongoing process? In all things, you must have the leadership abilities to set healthy goals for you and your sub, made for the happiness and betterment of both of you. You must also have the strength of personality, intelligence, and drive to follow through on your goals.

The sub and dom should sit down and discuss the control dynamic of their relationship. This is a chance for the Master (or Mistress) to set his expectations, what he expects from the sub, and why he expects it. This is also the sub's opportunity to provide feedback, express hopes or fears, and share feelings.

Both of you must have a clear idea of what the training will accomplish. For example, if you want to play the Mommy to your husband's vulnerable, innocent baby, but he wants a relationship where he is the tortured and beaten puppy of an evil and sadistic owner, you have a problem. Make sure you agree on the goals for your relationship and how to get there.

A sub is not likely to agree to anything she feels is not in her best interest. "Because I told you so" is not a good reason! For a free-thinking adult to give up her freedom of choice, she must receive something of equal or greater value (e.g. security, permanence, leadership) in return. Explain to her why each of your tasks for her is geared specifically to one or the other of your needs. Every task, homework, scene, and training session should have a reason--either it meets one of your needs, it meets one of hers, or it will further your intimacy with each other or God. Don't just make up random rules so you can have a power trip; make sure the sub clearly sees how this will benefit her or the relationship.

Expect training to put stress on your sub: people naturally resist change. Expect this! If you take away freedoms your sub was used to having, she is going to resist--this is not a resistance against you, but against the loss of freedom and control. Expect this and be understanding, but you must still be firm.

Training a sub is like training a new employee, an animal, or a child: you must be firm, have a clear direction and a way to get there, and have a system of punishments and rewards in place. Teenagers will push against their parents' boundaries; they will fight, scream, beg, plead, and be rebellious brats, but a good parent does not give in. It is the same with your sub! Yes, listen to her worries, fears, and complaints. She should never be punished for sharing with you her feelings. Be understanding and empathetic, but do not give in. Many subs will actively or passively resist your training, and you should not give in---you can modify your plans, or lower the intensity, but you should not let your sub control you or the relationship.

As a Dom, you are undertaking a huge responsibility--the emotional and physical care of another human being. You are also asking a lot of an intelligent adult, and you should give praise and positive feedback when your sub does well.

The types of punishments and rewards you use will depends on your sub--you must know her well! Modify your training to fit your specific sub's needs. What goals do you have for her? Depending on your sub's personality and past, some ideas might include:
  • trusting you not to abandon her
  • finding absolute security in a relationship
  • becoming more outgoing and social
  • learning to stand up for herself and be assertive
  • controlling her temper
  • learning to trust men (or people in general)
  • growing closer to God
  • developing her neglected talents (writing, drawing, business, dance, leadership, etc.)
  • learning to be emotionally open
  • better money management
  • receiving oral sex
  • ability to have an orgasm
  • learning to cry and be vulnerable in front of others
  • learning self-defense
  • learning that sex can be emotional and loving

A caring Master or Dom knows his sub and wants her to become a better, happier person, Christian, lover, wife, mother, friend, daughter, employee, boss, citizen, and friend. If you have her best interests at heart when controlling her, she will be more likely to change her behaviors. Communicate with her, agree together on goals, and together you will find a kinky BDSM relationship that makes you both happy.

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1/21/2009

Compliments Doms Give to Subs

I was so touched by this online discussion of wonderful compliments some Doms, Masters, Trainers, and Daddies have said to their beloeved subs, slaves, puppies, ponies, and little girls that I've decided to share it.



Many people wonder what BDSM really is. They think sexual kink must mean the people are perverted or abused in their past, rather than just creativity. They think about BDSM and figure it must be a bunch of abused women letting nasty, misogynistic men control our lives.



Of course, I hope from this blog you've realized that isn't true. My Dom and I are true equals in real life--we both have areas of strength the other does not have--and we only play at BDSM because we both like it. I get to be turned on the way I want and he gets the same. Everyone leaves happier and closer.



It is a definite misconception that the women (and men) subs in BDSM relationships are not loved and cared for. That they are simply used and taken for granted. Some of these online compliments shared by wonderful women subs made my heart happy. Some of the compliments I've shared are my own, from my Dom. If you are a dom, consider saying these. If you are a sub, read these and feel beautiful. If you are vanilla, I hope this makes you understand why some women choose to find love in BDSM.




  1. "Only you could be double fisted, fucked in both your arse and cunt at the same time and then buggered so thoroughly, and then politely point out that you haven't been whipped!"

  2. Good girl. I'm proud of you.

  3. I'm in love with you and want to spend the rest of my life with you.

  4. I will never be someone you used to love.

  5. You will never be alone in the dark again.

  6. You've done well and pleased me.

  7. You are a true treasure.

  8. You are my everything. There is nothing and no one more important to me than you.

  9. You are an amazing woman.

  10. You have done something I myself could never do. I am impressed.

  11. I do.

  12. You will never be replaced.

  13. Your maturity and honesty are your greatest gifts. Virtue is not lost on me.

  14. Will you cuddle with me, kitten?

  15. I can't wait to spend forever with you.

  16. I'm proud of you, and don't know many people who could have done what you did and survived, and I love you for it.

  17. You are stronger than you think, and you amaze me.

  18. Will you marry me?

  19. You really are a depraved, deliciously dirty little whore!

  20. Daddy is proud of the way you took that.

  21. Whatever I did or said to make you feel this way I offer my apologies to you for you are the greatest thing in my life ...I just want you to know, no matter what you or I say or do, I will always love you without hesitation. Maybe i am not right in my ways, maybe you aren't either, but I do know that after all these years, I know in my heart, I made the right choice marrying you, and never thought otherwise. Yes, we don't see eye to eye, we never will, but my heart sees your heart.

  22. You're mine!

  23. You are part of me, but without you I am nothing.

  24. You belong to me and will never have to make another major decision again.

  25. You love me the way I need to be loved---better than anyone.

  26. There is no part of you that I don't find pleasing.

  27. You make it easy to dream big.

  28. You're a slut, but you're MY slut.

  29. I love you even when you're broken.

  30. I will always protect your love and innocence--well, at least from others. *evil grin*

Happy sigh. Enjoy! :)

1/18/2009

Abduction + Rape Play

If you want to be ready for a rape play + abduction scene (that is, any rape play that does not take place in your own home!), a good idea is to prepare beforehand. The more planning and preparation goes into this, the smoother your scene will go. You can even have a to-go kit for later. Some people believe having a "Rape Play To-Go Kit" ruins the spontaneity, but your partner never even has to know it's there... you can keep it hidden in the trunk of your car, for example.
Many people have fantasies about doing rape play with an abduction element. This is because a new background and props can make it seem more real. Being "raped" by my husband in the comfort of your own bedroom is perfectly fine for me (I like the mental aspects of rape), but many other subs and Doms who rely more heavily on the physical aspects of scene to get into their roles need the location, setting, props, and overall "feel" to be more realistic. If you feel that "playing rape" just feels hollow and fake in your own bedroom, try setting the mood somewhere else: a bar, an alley (it's illegal to have sex in public, so make it private!), a hotel room, your car, or a deserted park or forest can work wonders for making the scene feel more real!

To make rape play even more realistic, many people enjoy setting it all up with an "abduction scene." Doms can surprise their subs at work, out shopping, in a parking lot, at a bar or club, at a party, or even at home. Kidnap them (making sure worried bystanders don't see and accidentally call the police on you!), bind and gag them, and force them into a car. If they don't know when or how this is happening, it makes it feel all the more realistic for them---just make sure you get consent sometime before.

One idea is to surprise the sub and force them into a car. A (blunt) knife or just physical force can make this feel scary and real, even if they know it is you. Bind and gag them, throw them into the backseat and cover them with a blanket, and drive them to an undisclosed location. The stranger the surroundings are to your sub, the scarier and more realistic it will be, so try to find a place far from home or where the sub has never been and won't recognize her surroundings. (This may be the only time you want to try a seedy hotel!)

If you don't want your sub to know it's you, you can always wear a ski mask. You can even "rape" your sub in your own home this way--I've found that, when the smell and feel of my lover is off, I can't recognize him at all at first. Your sub is going to know the way you feel, smell, breathe, and speak. You can throw her off by changing these things. For instance, shower with a completely different soap and shampoo, wear clothes that are new or have been laundered in a different laundry soap, and wear gloves to mask the feel of your skin. Wear an aftershave, cologne, or mouthwash completely different from what you'd normally ever wear. Slouch and try to walk faster or heavier than you normally do. If your sub can't see you (e.g. if you come in through a window, walk up behind her, and grab her), it is going to take her a while to recognize you. Why? We subconsciously know our lovers by their height, build, touch, and smell. A high school boyfriend of mine once came up behind me and grabbed me in a tight hug. He was wearing his friend's cologne and mouthspray at the time, and I was terrified. It took me several seconds (until he spoke) to figure out who had grabbed me. Until that moment, I never realized how much we subconsciously rely on smell and the sound of voice to recognize people! If you change your smell and feel, and keep from talking or being seen, you can terrifying your sub into real submission for several moments. Of course, eventually you want her to realize it's you, so you don't scar her emotionally and so she can utilize her safeword if she needs to.

Another idea some people use to make abduction and rape seem more real is to pretend to use date-rape drugs. I say pretend, because actual date rape drugs are illegal and therefore not moderated by any governmental regulations and highly dangerous. (I'm serious--common effects of date rape drugs include permanent infertility, coma, dangerously heightened or lowered blood pressure, nausea, slowed heart rate, dizziness, inability to speak, seizure, heart failure, and death.) However, you can pretend to get this effect by using sugar water on a cloth (to mimic chloroform) to make your victim "pass out," using tic-tacs or other pill-shaped candies, or whatever the two of you decide to make it "pretending" but still hot. You could also waking her up from deep sleep to get that groggy, out-of-it feeling. I have heard of people using drugs--from NyQuil to muscle relaxers to Ecstasy to alcohol to prescription sleep-inducing drugs. I will say, though, that it is illegal to use legal drugs for this purpose and illegal to use illegal drugs, period. You could go to jail for rape because all these drugs take away a person's ability or desire to think clearly and say no. You could also be convicted of murder if something goes wrong and your sub dies, leaving you pleading with a judge that the drugs, rape, and murder were "consensual."

More practically, how can your sub use a safeword or tell you when something is really wrong if she is not fully conscious? Also, before you try anything, you must do research on side effects, allergies, etc. If you simply must try these methods, do your research, have both of you sign a consent form, and think. Have a phone and first-aid kit handy. Learn how to do CPR. Any drugs that inhibit circulation (like alcohol!) should never be used with bondage or uncomfortable positions. Find out if any substances will react with pre-existing conditions your sub has (low blood pressure, heart problems, diabetes, etc.) and how they will react with medications your sub takes (herbs, vitamins, prescription meds, birth control, everything!) Honestly, it is dangerous to play with BDSM when one person is not capable of giving full consent, but before you try anything, you must do your research! In all, it is less work and safer to stick with pretending...

...Back to ideas for rape and abduction! :)

If you really want to freak out your sub, another idea is to have friends or coworkers she doesn't know kidnap her for you. (Get consent before---several months or weeks before, so she's not expecting it!) Of course, for this you need to have some seriously dedicated buddies who are understanding of your kink lifestyle. Make it very clear they are not to hurt her or sexually touch her in any way, and watch from afar to make sure she is safe. You can even be in the car once she is blindfolded; as long as you don't talk and your friends do, she will never know you're there.

Note: if you don't have any friends this close, or she would recognize their voices and scents, you can try having local BDSMers help you out. Make sure you work with people you trust.

Once your friends get her to the hotel room or abandoned woods or whatever, have them threateningly tell her they are going to strip her off and fuck her mercilessly. Then have them leave you to your wicked ways! As long as you don't speak or give yourself away, you can savagely rip off her clothes and rape her, even leaving and pretending to be many people. If your sub is blindfolded and tied, it will feel incredibly real to her!

Of course, if you are going to have your friends abduct your sub, be smart about it. Get her consent first, and write out that you are her husband, what you are doing and why, and sign it so your friends don't get arrested by some cop who misunderstands the situation.

To remember this event later, you can secretly put up a video camera so you and your sub can watch the whole thing later. Another good idea is to play loud, unfamiliar music or have some other noise (a tv, your friends in the other room talking loudly, a tape of your friends pretending to egg you on as you rape her, etc.) so she is less likely to recognize your breathing. If you are playing multiple people, use different scents, different textured clothes, handle her differently (as though you were multiple people getting off on her misery in different ways), use a condom, use different toys, and do different things to her (maybe one is an anal fiend, the other obsessed with her breasts, and another wants to rub his dick all over her before he fucks her). Changing gloves, having shirts of very different textures with different scents (sweat in one, leave some in different people's houses for a few weeks, spray them with different colognes, etc.), and changing gum or mouthwash between "characters" will make it seem real.

Of course, before you traumatize your sub, make sure she wants to be raped and get her consent. Find out what makes her turned on, and if this isn't it, don't do it!





If you want to try abducting her--whether it's as simple as you meeting her at a bar and telling her to get her ass in your car or a complex scenario involving props and other people--it is also a good idea to have a to-go kit ready.

Some ideas for a to-go kit that will make your sub's life easier when she gets to return to real life are listed below. Of course, if you just want her to ride home, bound and gagged in the backseat of your car, that's okay, too!



Abduction/Rape To-Go Kit for the Hapless Sub:

  • any lingerie or slutty clothes you want to force them to wear during the scene



  • extra change of comfy clothes: shirt, bra, panties, jeans, socks, sneakers



  • hair brush and ponytail holder



  • deodorant



  • makeup



  • toothbrush and toothpaste



  • any medications your sub takes



  • contact solution, contact holders, and glasses

Abduction/Rape To-Go Kit for the Wicked Dom(me):

  • condoms (in different textures and brands if you are playing more than one character)\



  • lube



  • sex toys, if desired



  • paddles, whips, and floggers, if desired



  • rope or handcuffs



  • duct tape



  • blindfold



  • gag



  • first aid kit



  • emergency first-aid scissors



  • hotel reservations, if needed



  • ski mask



  • blanket for backseat of your car



  • map to wherever you're going

Also, if you are going to put this much work and planning into a rape scene to make your sub's fantasies come true (go you!), take some time to think about what you want out of these scene. Do you want her to know it's you or not? Will you find it sexier if she struggles, screams, and runs, or if she goes limp and does not resist? If she is honestly terrified for her life, crying and pleading, is that going to turn you on or make you feel guilty and be a huge turn-off? Would you rather have a sub who fights and screams the whole time, one who eventually stops struggling and goes limp, or one whose body betrays her by getting wet and sticky even as you rape her?



Whatever it is you want and need out of this scene, you need to communicate with your sub to get it. It is highly unlikely your sub will just magically happen to respond the way you're dreaming she will. Some women fight, some scream, some go limp, and others urge you to fuck them harder. Whichever one you want, have some conversations with your sub beforehand. Mention rape fantasies and tell her what you find sexy about these scenes. Share your dreams and what happens in your personal fantasies: what is happening? how does your victim react? what does she do? Does she say anything in particular? This way, both you and your sub leave happy and fulfilled from the experience.

*Note: you must get consent beforehand for all rape play activities.

**Note: rape play is a type of BDSM activity where consenting adult partners agree to pretend to rape/be raped. This is completely different from actual rape, which is a crime, a sin, and morally reprehensible.

1/17/2009

How to Shave a Pussy

Ladies, ever tried to do a Brazilian bikini wax, only to find the bumps, rashes, and itchiness "down under" weren't worth the smooth look? Gents, are you curious to feel your lady silky smooth, making it easier to view and taste her?

Learning how to shave the mound and lips can be a seriously tricky business--believe me! That's why I'm sharing with you Babeland's awesome how-to guide, "How to Shave a Pussy." For this and more great how-to guides, browse Babeland's site!

To incorporate shaving into your BDSM play, consider the following: Doms, make your sub shave pubic hair in a way that pleases you (this works for men as well as women). Give your sub directions on how you want it shaved: all parts of it, or trimmed in a certain style and length, or dyed, or all but a strip gone, or maybe with a unique design or your initials shaved into the hair? This can be fun for a non-permanent body marking, humiliation play, or simply the thrill of having your sub's body exactly the way you decree. Also, try this sexy tip--have your sub sit still and shave her (or him) yourself. I know my Dom and I tried this once, and I was shuddering from the vulnerability of being shaved, literally stripped bare, by him: he had me sit in the shower, spread legged, and he carefully and slowly shaved me. I got so aroused by the intimacy and humiliation of it I almost came! It was a really beautiful moment for me...

And so, without further ado, here is Babeland's feature article for this week, "How to Shave Your Pussy."

For many lovers, the sensual explosion of encountering a shaved pussy is irresistible. Sex stars often feature little or no pubic hair. However, many of us are left raw, chafed and itchy when trying to achieve this hairless look. So here are my shaving secrets that will enable you to look like a porno princess in your own panties.
Make the time. You'll never want to do this when you're in a rush. I like to perform these rituals while sitting on the edge of my tub in a well lit bathroom.
Warm up your pubes. Run the water in the tub at its hottest temperature to create steam. Steam helps to soften and relax the pubic hair and skin.
Trim the hair to about 1⁄4" away from the skin. Make a hot water compress out of a washcloth and snuggle your whole pubic mound with the cloth for two minutes.
Study the pattern of your hair growth with your fingertips. First shave with, then against, the grain. Shaving against the grain may get you a closer shave, but it can also cause irritation for some folks. If shaving against the grain causes bumps, then just go with the grain.
Make it slippery. To do the actual shaving, use a brand new razor and a shaving creme such as Coochy Rash Free Shaving Creme or Sliquid Smooth Shave Creme.
Ready to shave? Here are some tips:

With a light hand, start with the lower lips. Rinse the razor after each swipe, cleaning any hair that may get stuck in the razor.
Do not go over the same patch of skin more than twice or use aggressive pressure.
Next, shave the sides, being mindful of the valley created by the groin muscle.
Finally, shave the hair directly on top of the mound. This hair tends to be the thickest and coarsest, so you may use a little more pressure here.
Swab your pussy with warm water and examine for any stray hairs that may have been missed.
Being now hairless, blot your crotch with a soft, dry towel. It feels wonderful, doesn't it? For the finishing touch, either rub down gently with Babeland Lickable Oil to moisturize sensitive skin and delight the tongue, or depending on your preference, dust lightly with cornstarch or Babeland Lickable Dust; this absorbs any lingering moisture and gives it a nice silky finish.
As time goes on, with a little practice, you'll develop speed in your technique. Also the skin will get used to the razor, and likely there will be less irritation.
Soon this habit will become second nature to your bathing routine and maintenance will require little effort. Remember to always wear panties with a cotton panel to keep things clean and comfortable. I think you'll discover many lovely rewards in your new hairlessness. Enjoy!

1/12/2009

BDSM in Mainstream Religions

While this is a Christian BDSM site, I believe it is still interesting and worthwhile to know what other religions, creeds, and sects believe about BDSM. There are so many religions out there today, and so much diversity of belief, that this would be nearly impossible to fit into one solitary post. Therefore, I will begin today with a look at the *official* teachings of the three mainstream world religions today: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Please note that I say the *official* teachings because often, the official doctrine of a church and the actual practices of its members are very different. Please keep that in mind and don't make any assumptions (such as "All Catholics believe...") about individual people just because their church has a certain teaching.

Hopefully, later blogs can delve into the BDSM practices of Eastern religions such as Hindu, American cults and sects, and pagan religions.

The three religions considered most "mainstream" today are Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Both Christianity and Islam stem from Judaism and its traditions; Christianity began about 50 CE and Islam around 600 CE. Even given their common roots in Jewish history and the patriarch Abraham, these three religions have very divergent opinions on sex and, therefore, BDSM.

Of course, none of these religions' ancient texts specifically mention the sexual practice we now call BDSM. There are examples in some texts of flagellation and master/slave relationships, but not in a sexual manner. The best I can do is relay what each of these religions teaches about sex and what is permissible for its practiontioners. And please, don't just trust me or any other web site; check my resources, do your own research, and never take just one website as the truth.

I will begin with Islam. Official teachings of the Qu'ran are that sex should be avoided outside of marriage. Inside marriage, however, Muslims have great freedom; the only two acts specifically forbidden in the Qu'ran are anal sex and sex with a menstruating woman. Some misinterpretations of Muslim holy texts have led to the belief that even anal sex is okay, but these texts actually refer to the variety of positions that can be used (both missionary and rear-entry vaginal sex are permissible). Any sex acts must be consenual, so a husband cannot force his wife to practice BDSM or vice versa. Inside these boundaries, anything for the sexual pleasure of both within marriage is acceptable.

I read a few articles about the acceptability of oral sex for practicing Muslims. Although it is considered by some leaders to be disgusting and against social norms, it is not specifically forbidden and couples may engage in it without going against the Qu'ran. Other leaders appear to have no problem with it whatsoever, seeing any sexual act between two consenting spouses as acceptable.

Obviously, as sex is saved for a married couple, threesomes, group sex, swinging, and homosexuality are not allowed.

Jewish law (the Talmud, written oral traditions about Jewish law, and the Hebrew Bible, the written holy texts also used by Christians as the Old Testament) accepts most sexual acts between two married people. It is forbidden for men to masturbate, and while the issue of female masturbation is less clear, it is still usually cautioned against to ward women against lust and impure thoughts. Also, any sexual act or contraceptive device that blocks or kills sperm is forbidden. This means the pill is okay but condoms are not; anal and oral sex are okay if the man is not brought to orgasm. Ejaculating outside the vagina is considered killing sperm, so it seems other forms of sex play are all right, as long as actual ejaculation doesn't take place.

Also, couples may not engage in sexual activity during a woman's period or for the 12 days afterward, until she can be purified. This gives couples a time to concentrate on non-sexual forms of intimacy and bonding, but BDSM and other sexual activities would obviously not be okay during this time.

Under Jewish law, male homosexuality is specifically forbidden. Jewish scholars vary on whether female homosexuality is a sin or simply frowned upon. Obviously, this depends upon the sect and theology of the particular scholar. While threesomes and other group sex are not specifically mentioned, like in Islam, sex is only meant for a married heterosexual couple. Sex is the woman's right and a husband's duty to his wife, although she should not deny her husband to punish him, either. Sex is wrong if it is selfish or if couples are fighting, and should always be a celebration of love and intimacy.

Interestingly, some Jewish BDSMers have been asking their rabbis about the morality of their practices. The rabbis have not agreed on how permissible BDSM is. One rabbi said, as long as both parties are consenting and enjoy the BDSM aspect, it is okay. Another rabbi believed anything that humiliated a human being or made the marriage partnership less than equal was "frowned upon by Jewish law."

Christianity has so many separate sects and denominations it would be impossible to list the views of all of them here. Many Protestant and evangelical denominations believe Christians should use the Bible as the definitive guide to morality, and since BDSM is not specifically forbidden in the Bible, I would assume consensual practices are okay with these groups. The only catch, of course, is that the Bible does forbid group sex, sex before marriage, lust/fantasizing, denying your spouse sex, and adultery. As long as Christians are staying away from these forbidden areas, anything consensual between a heterosexual married couple would be fine.

Other Christian groups believe the Bible alone is an insufficient or unclear guide to morality, and encourage their members to rely on the Word of God (as recorded in the Bible) and tradition, passed on by church leaders. While these groups include Protestants, Catholics, and Orthodox groups, the most famous example of this in the U.S. is the Roman Catholic Church. Since this is by far the largest of these "Bible + tradition" groups, as well as the best known, I have specifically researched this denomination's beliefs. Please do not assume it mirrors the beliefs of other Catholic, Protestant, or Orthodox churches!

The Roman Catholic Church is, of course, well known for its stand against artificial contraception. In other words, BDSM that includes condoms or other birth control would be a no.

What is less known, however, is this church's view on other human sexuality. While researching this blog, I almost wondered if the Catholics hated sex or simply didn't like others to know their views; it is almost impossible to find any good articles that clear state the church's position on sex aside from abortion and birth control! However, with perserverance, dedication, and some good Boolean search techniques, I finally pinned the church's official teachings down.

First, like the other groups, the Catholic church teaches against any sort of sexual activity outside of monogamous marriage. Homosexuality is banned, as are all the other prohibitions listed in the Bible (refer above). There is also the well-known decree that all sex must be open to conception--in other words, no birth control and no pulling out, and no foreplay or turning each other on that is not for the express purpose of leading to conception-friendly, genital sex. But, even more incredibly, the Catholic church bans any sexual activity other than genital sex. That's right, only penis-to-vagina interaction here, folks--even during foreplay.

According to one priest, kissing and touching are permissible, as long as they are included as part of sex. They are not permitted as "ends unto themselves." No, this doesn't mean Catholics can't kiss or hold hands--only that overtly sexual kisses and touching should be reserved for sex (leading up to it, during, or after). So making out or turning your husband on over email, in a text message, or even at home without the intent to culminate the tease in sex is not okay--even for sacramentally married couples.

Basically, Catholic doctrine teaches that to be moral, sexual acts must be open to conception and pregnancy. If they are not, they are
"intrinsically evil and are therefore always immoral, regardless of circumstances, intention, or purpose."

Because there is so much gray area and confusion in today's secular society about what is and is not sex, Catholic theologian Robert L. Conte, Jr. has given readers a list of activities which are not acceptable:

  • anal sex
  • oral sex
  • self masturbation
  • manual (hand) stimulation of your partner
  • homosexual acts
  • acts with multiple participants
  • acts with foreign objects or devices (sex toys, vibrators, etc.)
There you have it. Only genital sex is allowed.

Of course, many Catholics have written in, wanting to know if they may use these activities as foreplay, leading up to genital sex that is open to pregnancy, as part of sex, or after sex to bring the woman to orgasm if she was not satisfied by vaginal sex alone. The answer by the church has always been "no." Church leaders maintain that each act is separate, and only the one act (genital sex with option for conception) is morally allowed for married couples. So you cannot give a hand job or oral sex as part of foreplay, you cannot stimulate your wife's clit during vaginal sex, and you cannot bring her to orgasm after sex with your mouth or hands.

For the Catholic church, as long as kissing and touching leads to genital sex, it is okay. During vaginal sex, any position is acceptable for the mutual enjoyment of both spouses. I am unclear if dominance and submission play would be considered appropriate foreplay or not; if it turns you on to talk to dirty to your spouse, and it leads to vaginal sex, it might be okay, but you would have to talk to a priest to make sure. It is possible it would not be allowed because it is not specifically related to genital sex. As for the other components of BDSM, such as whipping, bondage, and toys, it seems they would be forbidden unless leading directly to vaginal sex. Again, I am not a church theologian, and these documents did not relate specifically to BDSM, so if you are a practicing Catholic with questions about BDSM, seek out a priest.

Finally, please remember that despite Church teachings against birth control, Catholics in America use birth control with exactly the same rates as their Protestant brethren. Please do not assume because the Church only allows vaginal sex that most Catholics follow this rule; I am sure it varies by individual couple.

In essence, while all 3 mainstream religions (Jewish, Christian, and Islamic) vary in regard to specific sexual activities allowed, they all agree that masturbation, homosexuality, adultery, lust, and pre-marital sex are not okay. With some limitations, certain BDSM activities would seem to be allowed for devout religious practitioners nonetheless. Certainly, in many Christian denominations, Judaism, and Islam, it seems to be permissible as long as the aforementioned "forbidden activities" are avoided.

Interestingly, all three of these religions have members who practice BDSM. While I hesitate to use the results of just one study, I was only able to find one study about the demographics of BDSMers, due to our relatively under-explored nature as a community. This study, done 10 years ago by a Ph.D. studying kink and fetishism, showed that in 1999, 51% of BDSMers were Christian (23% Protestant, 15% Cathoic, 10% other Christian, 3% Evangelical Christian)! Four percent were Jewish and less than 1% were Muslim. Of course, of all the BDSMers interviewed, only 9% were devoutly religious, with 34% devout or at least practicing their religion, and 37% had lapsed from their religion.

For more information, please see my resources:

On Islamic sexual teachings:
  • "Answering Christianity: Is Anal Sex Really Allowed Between Husband and Wife in Islam?" click here
  • "Sex and Islam" click here
On Jewish sexual teachings:
  • "Judaism 101: Kosher Sex" click here
  • "The Ties that Bind," New Voices national Jewish student magazine, click here
On Catholic sexual teachings:
  • "Sexual Sins Within Marriage," Catholic Planet, click here
  • "Sexually Stimulation Actions Lawful within Marriage," Catholic Information Network, click here
On BDSM statistics:
  • "BDSM Demographics Survey" click here

1/07/2009

Review: Laya the Land Kit



Laya the Land Kit from Good Vibrations is one of the store's great package deals. This one includes its namesake, the vibrator Laya, a bottle of Good Vibration's Please Cream Lubricant, and a 0.5-oz jar of Please Stimulating Cream.

First, the Laya vibrator is a pretty, small vibrator that has become very popular on the sex toy market lately. For such a tiny thing, I was super impressed by how many speeds she has--7 different speeds and 3 pulsing rhythms! Laya is made of elastomer (non-silicone), which is smooth and hypoallergenic. She is controlled by a simple button push: the plus (+) makes her go to the next speed, and the minus (-) slows her down. By herself she is $46 (comes in black, lavendar, pink, or blue) and the total kit is only $57.

So how did this kit measure up?

First off, BDSM beginners will love the stimulating cream, especially all you evil Doms and Masters out there! This is because not only does the cream stimulate, it burns! No, not in a painful, I'm-going-to-die-way, but in an ow-it-burns-I'm-at-your-mercy way. *evil grin spreads slowly*

I loved the cream at first sniff; not only is it cool and creamy, but it smells delicious. Citrus and spices, yum. The cream is supposed to be for your nipples and clit, so I first applied it there. Honestly, I couldn't feel a thing on my nipples, but on my clit I almost immediately felt it begin to burn. It wasn't terribly painful, just a tingle that kept at a low burning sensation for about 15 minutes. Wow! My devious mind went right to work, imaging how this could be incorporated into a scene.

True to character, I tried this out the next time I played with the cream. I tried it on my nipple again, this time with copious amounts of cream, but still nothing. On my clit, I felt it tingle and burn within 60 seconds, and like a good little scientist, even timed how long it kept burning (20 minutes, if you're wondering, though I could still feel it for a total of 30).

After feeling it on my clit, I figured it would burn this way in any orfice, and boy, was I right! With a Kleenex, I carefully applied some to the outside of my anus, and, wow!, was I not disappointed! Immediately my entire nether regions burst into glorious flames. I only wished my Dom had been there to enjoy it! It was great. I highly, highly recommend this cream for some fun play! Doms, it will give your sub a little pain and punishment, suitable even for beginners. Painsluts aren't going to like this cream alone, because honestly the burn is not that bad (on a 1-10 scale, only a 4 on the clit and about a 6 on both the clit and anus), but you could do amazing things for sadism and pain play with this stuff... apply it liberally to your sub's clit and bum, then whip her ass deliciously, or fuck her tight, burning little body while she screams for you, or simply make her scurry around the house and do your dishes while you watch her squirm in delicious pain and pleasure. Hot!

The Pleasure Cream lube did not thrill me like the sensation cream, but it was still good. The lube is white, the consistency of sunblock, and completely odorless. Of course, it was a bit messy so I'd recommend keeping some Kleenex or baby wipes by the bed during play.

As for the Laya, I was very impressed by this little vibe's kick and versatility! For such a small vibe, you get a wonderful array of sensations. Users have 7 speeds they can choose from, and then at the highest speed you can choose from among 3 different pulsation patterns. I had so many options I just couldn't choose, and went back and forth from low to medium to high, to pulse, and back again. I think there is something for everyone here!

The only issues I had with Laya are her shape, touch-button control, and external-only use. Her shape is small, and curved a bit too much to comfortably fit my vulva, so I had to wiggle around a bit to find where I wanted to hold her. After a while I got the hang of it, but she is still small, and her strongest vibe is at her base, so you have to choose between "entire vulva, with vibes too low" or "only higher on the clit" positions. I was looking forward to having my entire vulva stimulated, and Laya did, but then the top of the vibe (weakest vibration) was on my clit and the bottom, vibrating part was wasted on lower regions. If I wanted a vibe right on my clit, I had to move Laya up. Also, when I got really turned on and started gripping the vibe, my hand would hit the battery cap and Laya would turn off!

Her touch-button control was both a blessing and a curse. I loved that she was so simple to navigate through all her thrilling vibrating capabilities! However, if Laya is resting on your mound and vulva, you have to remove her, change the speed, and replace her--or you have to push the plus button where it is, pressing the entire hard plastic surface into your mound, which hurts. A remote control, or some control mechanism somewhere not touching the most delicate part of my body would be nice.

Finally, because of Laya's unique shape, she is great to press against your vulva, clit, and mound, but no more. Those of you that need internal stimulation as well, or need your clit stimulated directly--not through the hood--will obviously not be huge fans of an external-only vibe. My favorite vibes are ones that can slip between the inner lips to tantalize my clit directly, and this is difficult to achieve with Laya. However, for a varied experience, and to get a great new orgasm from having your lips and vulva caressed as well, Laya is a great pick!

A side note: I have tried Laya with and without the stimulating cream, and while the cream burns but does not turn me on alone, it certainly made for a better and faster turn-on when used in conjuction with the vibe!

For the price, I think this kit is a good buy. I love Good Vibrations; it is a very woman-friendly, sex-friendly store with great customer care and wonderful products. If you are new to vibes, or getting bored with your internal-only experiences, Laya will be a dainty little addition to your sexual repertoire. Whether you like feather-light touches or a firmer pulse, there is something in there for everyone. And remember, you get the lube and absolutely amazing stimulating cream thrown in therewith her, too. Hold her against yourself and let her varied speeds and pulses take you away!

Go to Good Vibrations and check out the Laya the Land Kit and other great sex toys!