BDSM Basics

10 Common Myths and Stereotypes in BDSM

August 27, 2019

There are many myths and stereotypes that I always hear circulating about BDSM. Quite frequently, I hear them from disgruntled clients or potential clients. Other times, I hear them from people looking in on BDSM from the outside, with no experience with alternative sexual lifestyles. The most disheartening though is when I hear them circulating within my community. Within this post, I am going to attempt to dispell ten of some of the most common myths about BDSM and power exchange that I have seen. If you know of others, please post them below, I am planning to do follow-up posts.

1 – Only “Deranged” People Practice BDSM

 

Well, this is false. I am involved in BDSM every day of my life in one way or another, and I would not say that I am “deranged!” People who are looking in on BDSM practices from the outside are only seeing the outer shell of everything occurring during a scene. My fantasies might be “dark and twisted,” but none of them make me a bad person or affect who I am outside of kink! One of my go-to examples of this is when I tell people about men who eat their cum “for me.” Most people are shocked and disgusted thinking that somebody who goes through with doing something so off the wall must be so mentally unstable that they need mental help. When in reality, that is the reaction the cum swallowers are trying to invoke! Eating cum is all about the humiliation and degradation aspect, including all the emotions that come along with it. Even if nobody outside the session ever finds out about it, the thought of what they would think if they did is erotic to some – but more on that later!

Is there anything “deranged” about a woman enjoying having a man wait on her around the house hand and foot? Perhaps while she enjoys a refreshing drink prepared by a loyal sub who is rubbing her feet while she drinks it? This fantasy is a common dream for many women, who hope to achieve it by being wealthy; or abandoning the idea altogether. Whether you will admit it or not, most people enjoy having things done for them. This fantasy is the reality for many Dom(me)s who have house subs to do all of the chores. While the two examples I just described seem to be unrelated, they are all a part of BDSM.

The point is a lot of the appeal to BDSM practices is that the norm in kink land is to break all of the social norms. So it makes sense that we look insane to people who have no experience with BDSM. That’s part of the fun to most kinksters. But, as long as someone is practicing for the right reasons and not as an excuse for self-harm or abuse, there is nothing mentally wrong with wanting to experiment sexually. Or with other aspects of power exchange for that matter.

 

2 – BDSM is an Excuse for Abuse

We have to stop here and address the elephant in the room at this point. Are there people that disguise their abuse as BDSM? Yes, there are. But several people claim to have murdered massive amounts of people due to their religion. People will use any excuse to disguise their malicious behavior. Those who are genuinely abusing their play partner are not abiding by BDSM guidelines and safety protocols – which I described in an earlier post.

During a scene, the sub has the right to stop the scene at any time using safety words. A domme may also end a session early if she believes that the sub is not admitting that they have reached their limits. That is what an authentic BDSM session looks like; exploring and pushing boundaries, but never surpassing them. There are going to be rotten eggs in every basket, but authentic BDSM involves no abuse, as everything is consensual. That point brings us to our next myth.

 

3- BDSM is Non-Consensual

This statement could not be further from the truth! Outside of those who use BDSM as an excuse to hide abuse, the foundation of any successful BDSM encounter is trust and consent. Members of my own family believe that I am an abuser of men. In their mind, no sane person would ever consent to have me kick them in the balls. Many people hold onto the belief that tops within the BDSM community are simply abusing mentally ill people. The fact is that most of my clients beg me to do these things to them or to make them do unspeakable things. BDSM practices can only occur between consenting, informed, and of legal age humans. Otherwise, yes, it does fall into the abuse category.

What is important to note here is that once it crosses into the abuse territory, it is no longer BDSM no matter what the activity entails. If a sub retracts his consent during a scene, and the top does not immediately stop the scene and begin aftercare procedures, the situation is now one of abuse and assault. As long as you are with an experienced dominant, you are less likely to be sexually assaulted during a BDSM scene than a one night stand. I say this because negotiation and consent occur before every BDSM scene. (I am not referring to those who live in a TPE dynamic here as consent and negotiation happened before the TPE began.)

 

4- Dom(me)s are Heartless or Repulsed by their Partners

This belief is a common misconception, and I can understand why. Humiliation is an aspect often used within BDSM scenes. It may be common to hear “weak and pathetic” being used to describe men in scenes where a Domme spits on him and ridicules him for this or that. This humiliation tactic is a method that some subs enjoy that helps take them into subspace. Not all subs though! A lot of subs don’t enjoy humiliation at all; therefore, they don’t partake in it. Those who do happen to enjoy humiliation as a part of their scenes are usually reasonably particular about what name-calling or degradation they do or do not want to hear. Again, the emphasis is on consent and boundaries established between the dominant and the submissive.

While the dom(me) is not disgusted by their partner, if their partner desires to feel disgusting during the scene, they will fulfill their fantasy. To me, that shows that the dom(me) is, in fact, full of heart, because it is their wish to fulfill the subs fantasies. A dominant also has the potential to guide and train their sub outside of their BDSM sessions, or use their BDSM sessions to encourage better behavior outside of them. Pure domination is supposed to come from your heart, ultimately with the subs best interest in mind. Whether that passion is to fulfill the submissive’s wildest fantasies, to train them into better humans, or to push their subs to new limits, the top is full of passion. There is a wide breach between the bratty, lazy, aloof Princess in pink, the leather-clad mistress wielding a whip, and the soft-spoken nurturing domme. But all of them are clear in their passion for domination and control. They also have an understanding of the fundamentals of BDSM that make it better for both domme and sub. Any domme worth her salt has spent countless hours honing the skills that she implements within her sessions. Why would a heartless person go through so much effort to fulfill another person’s fantasies of submission?

 

5- Those who Submit have No Self-Respect

Someone who has genuinely embraced their submissive side tends to have a lot of self-respect. Often they take great pride in submissive accomplishments, such as how much weight they can suspend from their scrotum. Or even how many days they have gone without orgasm.

Are there mentally unhealthy people within the BDSM community, whether as a client or life stylist? There are mentally sick people all over this earth. In my opinion, everyone should be in therapy. However, as the average submissive goes, they have no more or less self-respect than any other human. Only a mentally healthy sub is going to be able to enjoy the session to the fullest. If they didn’t have respect for themselves, then there would be no fun in experiencing someone “breaking them down” if they are already broken. You can’t dominate what has previously been dominated by their self-loathing.

6- There is Only One Right Way to be a Sub / Bottom / Dom(me) / Top

I have touched on this topic previously and will go into more detail as time goes on, but there is a lot of variety within the kink community. The only dominatrix desired by subs is not, in fact, the one wearing leather from head to toe and wearing a ten-inch BBC strap on. That may be the one most often seen when googling “FemDom Porn” or within mainstream media, but there are far more different styles of domination than that. I can command attention and respect with a stern look and the raise of one eyebrow just as much as I can by shouting and wielding a weapon of sorts. There is also no one way to be a submissive. The only “right way” to do anything in BDSM is to ensure that both parties are informed and consenting, and that’s literally it! All you have to do is have two legal adults sit down and come to a conclusion about what they desire, or don’t desire. Whatever end they come to is the right way for them.

 

7- It is Not Real BDSM if You Pay / Charge for the Experience

For the life of me, I cannot understand this conclusion. The food I make in my kitchen is just as real as the food that I go to purchase at a sit-down restaurant. While they are both equally as “real,” I do expect the menu at the five-star restaurant to be better than the food prepared in my kitchen. Neither my partner nor I am chefs, and the food that we eat daily is relatively average. The five-star restaurant’s kitchen is, however, full of people who have spent their entire lives studying cuisine and practicing honing their craft. While I do enjoy cooking, it is not a skill I have dedicated much time to learning as I have other work to be doing. Do you see where I am going with this analogy?

Even someone who practices BDSM as a hobby probably won’t dedicate as much time to it as someone who has dedicated their entire career to the practice. I actually quit my previous job to become a Dominatrix full time so that I could dedicate myself to learning all that I could. There are countless benefits to both paid and free BDSM encounters, but you can’t discount someone who has spent 40+ hours a week, for years, in a dungeon. (Doesn’t have to be an actual dungeon space – could be anywhere sessions are held) They have had sessions with many different humans and catered to many different fetishes over time. When you pay a professional dominant, you are paying for that experience. You know that they have been trained appropriately, or, if they haven’t, you refuse the session.

The length of a session is not all of the time that the dominant sacrifices for that session. A lot of forethought and planning go into the best scenes, whether they are in person or online. The dominant has to ensure that everything is just so to bring the subs fantasies to life. Depending on the illusion being created, this can be quite the involved process. To many submissives, it can be quite a daunting process to try to find someone to fulfill their fantasies. Often times, it may be next to impossible to find someone interested in donating so much of their free time to someone else’s fantasy. For many, it is easier to simply google the services that they are interested in, and book a session with an experienced professional dominatrix for her set rate. Something that might be difficult to explain to a potential hook up is more than likely run of the mill to any dom(me) who caters to that particular fetish. I could go on and on, but the bottom line is that BDSM is whatever two consenting parties agree upon. If a dollar amount for the session to take place is a part of the agreement, so be it. If you think a paid session is inauthentic, by all means, don’t purchase one or talk to professional dominants.

 

8- A Good Submissive/Dominant has No Limits

I don’t know where this idea started. Some sort of sub competition, perhaps? In my experience, there are few things more frustrating than trying to session with a sub who claims to have no limits. Limits are the boundaries that I can form the session within and can let me know what you have experimented with before. If you are giving me no boundaries, you aren’t giving me the covers of the storybook. It makes it difficult to get a session going. It also demonstrates that you have little to no understanding of yourself or the situation that you stumbled into. Do you really think you have no limits? Shave off your eyebrow. That doesn’t bother you? Tattoo my name on your forehead. Everyone has limits, and a sub claiming to have none comes off as inexperienced and overeager.

If you are genuinely naive, let a dominant know. Most people draw the line at permanent harm or exposure to people in their life who don’t know about their kinky parts. Those who are novices will probably have a longer list of limits than those who have had time to “push past them.” Whether a submissive is a novice or a seasoned vet, the only thing that makes a sub “good” or “bad” in regards to limits is their own understanding of them. A good sub would come to the superior and present them with a list of hard and soft limits, and keep their list up to date should anything ever change. The same goes for Dom(es). A common limit for dommes is that they won’t expose their naked bodies. Another common one is that they will not be treated as a submissive. I don’t care who you are in this world, there is no way that you are into every single fetish in this world. Trust me, there are too many polar opposite fetishes on this earth. Keep a list, check it twice.

 

9- There are No Safety Measures or Guidelines

This could not be further than the truth. We already discussed it earlier, so I won’t beat a dead horse too much. PRICK and RACK are the first things that someone entering the scene should learn. Without knowing what those acronyms mean, you can’t practice ethically any many will refuse to play with you. The community also has a tendency to band together and ostracise those who do not comply with PRICK and RACK guidelines.

 

10- A Submissive has No Control in a Power Exchange Scenario

Let’s put together everything that we have learned so far today. There are two people involved in the encounter; the dominant and the submissive. The sadist and the masochist. Both parties thoroughly enjoy the role that they play to the fullest. There is going to be one person dishing out the pain, whether it be mental or physical, and there is going to be one person receiving it. However, the entire encounter is contingent upon continuous consent. Who is going to be more likely to withdraw consent in this scenario, thus completely ending the session? Once the sub withdraws consent, all power that the dom(me) once had is now lost, and back in the hands of the submissive. Submissives consent to relinquish their power to a domme before the scene begins. But remember, any domme worth their salt would never continue a session once a hard limit has been reached. Anybody who continues with a session once consent is withdrawn is nothing more than an abuser. In my eyes, I think the submissive actually holds the most power in a power exchange scenario, as they are ultimately deciding how far the dom(me) can go.

 

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