[FROM THE PAPER] BOOKS, BROOK BUILDING AND BONDAGE

Joe Young - Politics Editor

We’re all masochists on some level – that is, someone who likes to inflict pain on themselves – after all, we’ve all probably spent an evening in the library the day before an essay is due and instead of writing and studying, we’ve spent it taking Snapchats of anything we’ve found mildly amusing or vaguely entertaining.

But there are an increasing number of students who are experimenting with bondage; the 2012 Student Sex Survey found that 35% of students had used handcuffs in the bedroom, 35% of students had used blindfolds, and 18% had admitting to trying bondage in the bedroom.

Statistics have shown that roughly two-thirds of men take the role of the dominant partner (doms) and roughly two thirds of women take the role of the submissive partner (subs).

Amongst men who have sex with men and women who have sex with women, it’s more evenly split, with 55% of MSM and 52% of WSW preferring to dom.

Of course, individuals can enjoy both subbing and domming – these people are known as switches.

bdsm chart

The rise of the internet has greatly expanded the reach of the fetish community; on leading website FetLife, the 10 most popular kinks are bondage, oral sex, spanking, hair pulling, anal sex, blindfolds, biting, talking dirty, handcuffs and discipline. Coming in at a lowly rank #100 is cock worship.

Pulse Features spoke to a student who enjoys BDSM and asked her about her experiences with it.

How did you first get into BDSM?

“When I was 15, I was sort of seeing this guy. He wanted to try it, and I thought “Hey, why not? The sort-of relationship ended badly but it was nothing to do with BDSM. Then, when I was 16, I got a new boyfriend and we tried lots – rope, slapping, spanking, handcuffs – that sort of thing – and I really enjoyed it.

Is 50 Shades of Grey a fair reflection of BDSM?

“No. Not at all. Christian Grey is an abuser and a rapist and I worry about why people see him as some kind of sex idol, when it’s people like him that cause serious damage and accidents.”

What’s the BDSM scene like in Preston?

“There isn’t one. The closest I’ve ever seen is things like Gory Burlesque at The Ferret. There are individual people who are into it – like I know a couple in a poly relationship I play with, but, God, it’s an awful term, but little old Preston isn’t really woke to it yet.”

Would you like a bigger BDSM community in Preston?

“Yes and no. In the kink community, everybody knows what’s going on. Like, back home, there’s a guy who keeps attending events that’s a rapist. He takes advantage of people new to the scene who aren’t confident saying safe words and are willing to try lots. He uses them.”

We then asked the student what they would consider the three most important things to consider when trying BDSM are. They answered:

  1. Consent – make sure you have the full c0nsent of your partner for whatever you’re doing, and that they know they can withdraw consent at any time. If they’re not in a situation where they can, things can get out of control very quickly.
  2. Safety – ensure anything you do is safe. You shouldn’t try new stuff that’s potentially risky unless you’re with someone experience who knows what they’re doing. Things can and do go wrong so remember that it’s all about the recovery. If you can correct an error quickly, and make sure your partner is safe and unharmed, it should be alright.
  3. Sanity – just don’t be silly. If someone random in the street came up to you and asked you to flog them until their backside bled, you’d not ‘just do it’. Things progress in their own time, so be patient. Also, for the love of God, make sure you have your wits about you. If you’re off your head on cocaine and you ask someone to try ch0king, sober you would scream “What the f*ck are you doing?

Don’t do anything that you would look back on and think ‘Maybe a bit much”’to in the future.”

If you want to add spice to the bedroom, or have watched 50 Shades of Whatever and want to see what BDSM is actually like, make sure you’ve got full consent, someone who knows what they’re doing, and make sure you’ve got a safe word.

Giving up control isn’t easy, but if it does get you off, it can be so much fun.

If in doubt, find a reputable sex shop, go in, and speak to a member of staff. Learn, and make an investment in your safety.

Three students gave us their top tips:

“Make sure it’s a person you deeply trust. It’s so much better if you trust your dom as you can submit yourself to pleasure and not have a niggling worry on the back of your mind.”

 

“It’s bizarre to think that BDSM became such a big part of my sex life. It started as a passing fancy and it’s now such a regular thing that I do that I can’t imagine my intimate life without it.

 

“Do your  f*cking research. Get yourself clued up, and go into it with an open mind. If it doesn’t work for you, you’re not a strange person. If it does work for you, then great.”

Get Into BDSM

Handcuffs: The sort of handcuffs you get in shops like Ann Summers are fine for beginners, but when you get really into BDSM, they’re useless. Go on Amazon and buy a good pair of safety handcuffs.

Flogger: A flogger is different to a whip – whereas a flogger has one handle and many threads coming from it, a whip has one long, tapered thread coming from the handle. A good flogger can be used in a variety of ways, from the obvious sadism/masochism, to more sensual stuff like using the handle as a toy.

Underwear: As weird as it sounds, underwear is a great tool in BDSM. Whilst getting down and dirty, most people think that what’s underneath them is what matters – few consider the fact that they can be used as a makeshift gag.

Research: Knowing what you’re doing is the single most important bit. People can, and do, die when they try stuff they don’t really know much about. Learn about what you want to do, and if you’re comfortable, get someone who knows how to do it to teach you how.

Start off Slow: Don’t expect big things, big bruises, and insane highs when you first start. Things will go wrong, just make sure you’re clued up as to what to do when they do.

Glossary

Bondage: Sexual practice involving tying up or restraining a partner

Domination: Exercising power or control over a sexual partner

Dom: A dominant partner

Masochism: Getting sexual pleasure from pain inflicted on one’s self

Sadism: Getting sexual pleasure from inflicting pain on others

Sub: A submissive partner

Switch: A partner who is happy to dom or sub

 

About Joe Young 316 Articles
Joe Young has been involved with student media for a very long time now, holding posts within The Pulse, and Pulse Radio, as well as the predecessor of The Pulse, Pluto. He is currently Politics Editor of The Pulse, and Head of News of Pulse Radio. In 2016, he won the Media Award for Best Article for his coverage of the Fishergate Shopping Centre bomb scare.

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