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by Katie Peachesa April 10, 2020 5 min read

Safety Tips for Dominants and Sadists - BDSM Safety Tips Part 1

By Ekaterina Mironova

There are a lot of people who practice the BDSM lifestyle. Unfortunately, this means that there are a lot of people who don't know the basic safety ideas involved in BDSM play. It's not that they don't want to learn, they were just never taught. It's with the goal of teaching these people in mind that the following list of general safety tips was made. They're fairly easy to follow and will make for a safer experience for you and your partner

The Core Rule of BDSM Safety

The core rule, where all the others come from, that should be observed when practicing BDSM play is SSC. This, obviously, is an acronym that stands for Safe, Sane, and Consensual. It's one of the most obvious tenets of the lifestyle but it's still easy for beginners to not know about it. All of the safety tips that follow are based around these three basic ideas. Safe means, obviously, ensuring that what you're doing won't cause undue harm or, in the theoretical worst case scenario, death. Sane is also just what it sounds like. A type of mental reminder, it basically implies that you should give thought to what you're doing to make sure it doesn't seem overly dangerous or cruel. Consensual is one of the most important factors of the three. While many people seem to think it simply means "don't commit rape," it actually means that you should make sure you're not doing anything your partner is against. Even if you read none of the other safety tips, you should make sure to keep these three in mind. As mentioned, they are the core that all other safety rules and ideas are based on and you can simply follow the logic of them to reach the others.

Safety Tips for Dominants and Sadists

As the one in control of the situation, a Dominant or sadist carries most of the burden of ensuring all activities are performed safely. He or she will be responsible for seeing to the well being of the submissive or masochist under their control. There are some tips that will be discussed later that fall under the realm of the submissive, but for now, the simplest tip is to remember that your submissive or masochist has placed their well being in your hands.

The "Safe" part of SSC is going to take a bit of work, and some pain, on your part. One of the most repeated tips in the community will serve you quite well here. Always test new equipment on yourself. Whether you're getting a new crop/whip, a set of simple handcuffs, a violet wand, or full on bondage furniture, you need to have a good idea of the kind of pain and damage it can inflict. This is a rule that most Doms and sadists do not like to follow but it is extremely important that you do so. You don't want to take a new cane to your submissive only to have it snap and tear a gash in their skin, after all. Testing adjustable bondage furniture will also give you a good idea of what positions it can comfortably be set to and give you practice quickly releasing the cuffs or straps if necessary. A simple thing, but it can save a life in a medical emergency. On the subject of bondage furniture, there's a tip you should keep in mind when picking it out. If possible, always try to get quick release cuffs or straps. They don't make it any easier for your sub to pull out of the restraints but they will help shorten the time to freeing them if something goes wrong.

The "Sane" part of SSC is a lot easier for a dominant to keep in mind, though a sadist may find the line blurring a bit more. Keeping things "Sane" is basically a simple matter of ensuring you're not crossing the line into full abuse. For example, while striking your partner with a crop or whip for the purposes of play is mutually enjoyable it's usually not acceptable to punch your partner. By the same token, most couples consider anything that sheds blood to be in violation of the idea of "Sane". This differs, of course, from couple to couple. Some people enjoy seeing a bit of their own blood and their partners might enjoy shedding it. If this is the case, you need to make sure to have proper medical equipment and knowledge to keep things clean and safe. If you enjoy a bit of knife or blood play then a first aid kit and knowledge of how to treat cuts is essential. Failing to keep your submissive safe during more extreme play is one of the easiest ways to accidentally violate the "Sane" rule.

"Consensual" is the easiest of all three parts of SSC to obey. On the face of it, it seems to be exactly what it says. Namely, it seems to be that you simply need to ask before you do anything. Of course, given the nature of the BDSM lifestyle, that's not really a legitimate option for the most part. What you, as a Dominant or sadist, need to do is establish your submissive's limits and a safety word. Limits are simply a list of things your sub absolutely refuses to do or simply doesn't want to do. The former is called a "hard limit", and is legitimate grounds for him or her to leave immediately, while the latter is called a "soft limit" and is a good reason for the submissive to use the safety word. The safety word is one of the most important tools to keep things consensual in BDSM play especially if you and your partner enjoy rape play. It gives you, as the Dominant, the freedom to ignore cries of "no" and "stop" while still giving you a way to know when you've accidentally gone too far. Despite the name, a safety word is more than just the word itself. You set up a word, with "red" being a common one, but you also need to set up a nonverbal signal. Sometimes your submissive will be unable to speak because of a ball gag, oral sex, or any of a number of other reasons. In this case they'll need to use a nonverbal cue. One of the most common is to give them a ball of scarf that they can drop if they need you to stop. Of course, don't feel limited by this. You can come up with any nonverbal cue you want.

As long as you keep those basic ideas in mind, you should have no problem keeping your submissive safe as you play. Of course, this doesn't mean that you shoulder all of the burden of safety. Your submissive has some of the responsibility, as well, though in a different way. Next, you'll see the basic safety tips that submissives should follow.

Katie Peachesa
Katie Peachesa

Katie Peachesa is a sex and lingerie blogger based out of the urban chic Wapping in the heart of East London, United Kingdom. In her spare time, Katie enjoys photography, yoga and fitness, a bit of boxing, traveling, keeping up with the latest fashion trends and mudlarking and exploring pastoral settings. You are likely to find Katie in an artisan cafe in Brick Lane on a Saturday afternoon furiously typing her next article on her laptop whilst she is sipping on her flat white and drawing inspiration from the hustle and bustle in the heart of creative London. Katie runs the "Fashion Life Mag" and has been featured in Cosmopolitan, Allure, Grazia, Tatler, Evening Standard and other popular media outlets.


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