Consent and its Place in SM SexAt first the sting of the whip, and the reddening of her ass felt wonderful, butCarrie knew that the pain would soon become unbearable, despite her stating”refrigerator,” her “safe” word. .
.Carrie’s example shows us how important consent is in SM, or rather sado-masochism sex play. The most obvious reason consent is important in SM play isthe risk of injury and the potential for unwanted danger is avoided. In addition,with understood consent, trust is developed, making the experience moreenjoyable to the participants.
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Reasons for non-consenting play do exist, howeverthese occur only under certain circumstances. When dealing with SM, there is agreater risk of injury and of danger than missionary position sex, simplybecause of the dynamics of it. When an individual is being tied up the way inwhich the ropes are tied, how a person is suspended, and whether or not theperson has revealed confidential information to be used in the scene all aid tocreate a potentially dangerous situation. When in bondage, the struggles andwriggles of your partner desperately trying to escape your teasing might tightena rope of poor quality and/or singularly tied around a wrist, creating majorveins to stop circulating . The danger might not even seem obvious until it istoo late. It is possible though highly unlikely that one could lose the usage ofone’s hands. Often in SM sex, extremely intimate information is given to yourpartner, for example a fantasy.
If the fantasy involves play that mainstreamAmerican society might not find acceptable, a deeper level of trust would mostlikely be necessary. Many human beings have rape fantasies. Do they want toactually be raped? The answer to me is very clear, absolutely not. The fantasy,is not about the violent act that rape actually is. It is about control, thatcontrol given to another, the feeling that there is no choice. The mostsignificant difference I know of between an SM rape scene and the real thing isthere is trust be it even if it is peoples unknown to each other and a thirdparty has set up the scene. There is a conscious giving of consent.
A SM rapescene, must have a great deal of consent. Many men (and some women) seek outprofessional Mistresses, Masters, submissives, or someone who has revealed awant or need to experience what they themselves enjoy. Someone whom they arepretty much assured that there will not be trust problems, for example arevealing of identities, as in the case of a high profile person. Also the playis generally a place of comfort to experience what they truly enjoy and possiblycan not in their “real” life.
With this type of relationship the trust oftenneeds to comes close to intuition coupled with a little time sharing what eachwill and won’t do. Consent to some degree is already given, yet even here itneeds to be established. The real difference is that play is often so removedfrom participant’s lives that it no longer affects their normal life.
They arenot laughed at for wanting to choke on a beautiful women’s high heel, whereastheir spouse would not hesitate in calling a mental hospital at the mere mentionof the thought. Disaster can still occur, for a “scene” cannot be written witha signed approval (it can but the enjoyment that can only be found inspontaneity, would definitely be lost). Yet, this very factor creates thepotential for millions of things to go in a direction unsafe for the people notdirecting the action.In any sexual engagement, my ultimate satisfaction comes from bringing mypartner to a most gratified state.
To have him or her look at me with their eyesbegging for more without sound is indescribable. Knowing that they are therefor me; knowing that what I need for the scene to be great is a pushing ofthresholds more than ever thought possible and “going there”; knowing that whatI need for the session to go well has been taken care of; these are a few of myneeds. Checking that I and anyone involved is in a good place is very importantfor me. This includes an age check. Laws have been established in this countryto protect children from harm for they cannot “give” consent. Yet there aremany adults who, although they are well into adulthood, are unable to figure outand accept the responsibility of personal consent. If Carrie had a partner whowas aware of her needs and the established “safety” word she would not dreadanother scene in which she was disrespected.
Each a bottom and top holdpowerful positions to control what occurs in a given scene. Yet if a top, thedominant one, does not heed the warning from their trusting subject than theymight find themselves without a partner very soon. Safe words are used to addto the scene by having all those involved know that there is complete freedom togo any where until that word is stated. I have even heard of different levelsand meanings representing different things , such as slow down instead of stop.
This again allows individuals to explore and expand their area of play. Tounknown proportions, often only in retrospect have I personally thought I couldbe taken “there”, taken one step beyond which, as I stated is the ultimateexperience. Possibly this is the exact reason so much of SM parties is merelyobserving other’s technique style and expertises, aside from the purely eroticside of watching others, which brings me to another area. Many people I haveknown involved in the scene find it important to join a leather, SM, gay and /orlesbian club, organization, or group. Possibly it is a need to be surrounded byothers that would not judge as harshly. These clubs and groups are often placesto meet others that you can play with. There are a lot of people that bringsomeone merely curious about the scene.
What truly permeates these meetings isthe presence of trust ant the understanding of consent. Without these factors,meetings would deteriorate into rape and torture festivals. Consent, in playwith someone as stated, gives privileges. It also encompasses a greater trust,one involving life and death or, at least, a risk of disease. If an individualis using equipment used in a scene that involved blood and sexual aids, such asdildos, medical devises, and an enormous and ever expanding list of other items,there is a tremendous responsibility of those playing to wash clean and/or throwaway items that pose any threat. Because the partners’ consent stems from trust,there should be an understanding of guidelines involving physical safety.
There are some cases when non-consenting SM play could have advantages or couldbe unavoidable. Advantages could occur when one plays with a new player orpossibly with someone they have not been with before. Either each person wouldgive a detailed questionnaire, or, in a more casual setting, one might just betaken by physique and begin with not many words at all. The individual on topthen needs to continually watch for what is “O.K” , but the excitement is in theexploration. All people involved should know that they have a way to give allor, as I like, do anything to please, yet retain the right to refuse.
Whendate-rape came to the public’s attention colleges across the country scrambledto figure out codes to establish how far was too far. But in SM play can thishappen? Time shared, spent experiencing every nuance and possibly entertainingextremely limited play are ways of not crossing a boundary. What we would beleft with would be a very sterile boring time. To some people in the SM scenenew partners and experiences with your partner need to allow for occasionalnon-consenting . Is it possible to establish a SM scene that is acceptable tothose involved? I hope the answer is yes.
I know that to achieve this, effortand/or time might help. The greatest enjoyment will be reached if this effort isgiven. Difficulties arise with such a tremendously large amount of nuances to afield in which hardly any time has been given to . We do not know why Joe up thestreet likes to flash young boys, or why Mary has sex once a week with herhusband and does not know how to reach an orgasm except by masturbating, and wedefinitely do not know why Carrie keeps coming back for more, hoping herpartner does start to understand what she needs and wants. What we do know isthat in all these situations consent is an almost mandatory factor.
Consent iswhat makes combining whips, needles, electricity, and the human body safe.Social Issues