The five people to avoid when you’re new to BDSM

It can be intimidating. You are entering a world only whispered about, and it can be a labyrinth of rules, mores, a new lexicon, and all while putting your very flesh out there to taste something more exciting. Who wouldn’t be intimated? I still get intimated sometimes. BDSM is not for the faint of heart, and being new is a minefield. 

Take my hand, come closer, and let’s have a short talk. In the hope it will help you. You’re an adult, you can make your own choices. But here are five people to avoid when you’re brand new to the scene. 

1. THE I GOT IT ALL – aka I’m Everything You Need person — This person will zero in on you and try to monopolize you. Likely because you’re new, they’ll say, and not involved in the “drama”. Translation – you don’t know how much everyone dislikes them yet. They will try to convince you that they can take you out and show you around, and you don’t need anyone else, because they can DO IT ALL. BDSM is a buffet of delights, don’t let one person be your only meal. If you are approached by this person, shut them down hard. 

2. THE LORD DOM/DOMME HIGH – aka You’re a sub, I want to collar you now, Domly dom/ domme — Ah, the I AM SUCH A DOM/ DOMME and you should be my sub. Lots of people come into the BDSM scene thinking they are subs (especially women). Later, they usually find out it’s really fun to be a switch. They just need to learn and have some experiences. Those learning opportunities and experiences will be limited if you let yourself be collared as a sub to someone you hardly know. Even if you are a sub who wants to be collared, don’t rush into it, take your time. Choose wisely. 

3. THE HIDDEN PLAYER – aka Let’s play privately — I want to get you alone and then throw safety to the wind. There are a lot of reasons this person will cite – they want to keep their anonymity, they don’t like dungeons, they want it to feel intimate. Those may all well be the truth. However, playing privately, no matter how long you have been in the scene, should be done with the utmost caution and only with people you have known for a while. If you do decide to play privately let someone know where you are. And if you are new, play in well-established play spaces for a while if you can. You will get to learn new things, watch how scenes are done, and meet a lot of people. Save the private play dates to someone you are in a relationship with or until you know the scene much better. 

4. THE PERSUADER aka Try it, I’ll help you do it — New members of the scene have a lot of limitations. Often, they enter wanting to try one or two things. If you stay in the scene for any length of time, of course your palate will expand. You will pick more items from that buffet mentioned earlier. But all that needs to happen on your time. Not someone else’s. Beware of the person who wants to expands your horizons too fast or too far, who goads you into an uncomfortable situation, who does not hear your ‘no’ as ‘no’ but as a challenge, who insists they have a technique to make you like this thing you are insisting you don’t like. It’s gross, and pressuring people into scenes is awful. Stay away from the Persuader. 

5. THE LECTURER – aka This person knows it all — They may seem like a friend, a potential play partner, a dungeon owner, a teacher of BDSM, you name it they have got the experience. And they will teach you. On the surface it looks great, but let’s remember you don’t have much experience. How do you know their bondage technique is safe and a technique that you want to learn?

There are many places that offer BDSM education, they usually charge and vet their instructors. The ones offering it for free, well, you get what you pay for. It’s very true that it might just be a nice person who is willing to show you something. There are so many nice people in the scene. Feel free to take the no cost lesson, but follow up with a class or a conference, or even YouTube. When playing with people’s bodies, you can never be too careful. Knowledge is your friend in the scene, make to acquire as much as you can. 

None of these people mentioned are black and white. There are certainly times you will want to be persuaded to stretch your boundaries, and there are many, many great doms/ dommes – you might even meet them early in your journey. I just want you to be wary, to understand and know who might be out to take advantage. 

Until next time, keep talking the taboos. 

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