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Rules for Safe BDSM Play

Here are 10 rules to live and play by, for learners through to experienced players

1. Risk is unavoidable, however basic the bondage. Anticipate obvious hazards. The unforeseen happens all the time in bondage scenes, from beds breaking to neighbours calling, kids interrupting, etc. 

2. Always fit bondage snugly, not tightly, until you have more experience with it. Make sure you can easily slip a finger under the ropes, chains or scarves you are using. If your bondage is too easily escapable change or alter your technique rather than making it tighter. Usually a few extra twists can resolve any weakness without making things uncomfortable or risky 

3. Determine how long each bondage can be endured and watch the clock. Begin testing new bondages for around 10 to 15 minutes at a time before working up to longer periods 

4. Submissives – never let anyone you do not know or trust tie you up. You are literally placing your life in their hands 

5. As with any S&M process, negotiate the scenes before hand, negotiate which bondages will take place and clearly outline both Submissive and Dominant limits 

6. Agree upon, and practice, a “safeword” before you begin 

7. Learn basic pulse sites of the body. Never cross pulse points with direct pressure from ropes. Pulse points are located on the wrists, inner-upper thigh and throat 

8. Never use a chain or rope around the front of a submissive’s throat and avoid placing pressure on this area during play 

9. Keep a heavy pair of scissors handy to cut your submissive’s bonds should anything go wrong 

10. Always keep watch over a bound submissive, check constantly for numbness, discolouration and cold skin in case circulation deteriorates.

 Adapted from Screw the Roses, Send Me the Thorns: The Romance and Sexual Sorcery of Sadomasochism by Philip Miller and Molly Devon (1988)

 


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