Wednesday, February 11, 2015

A kinky glossary of terms

Posted By on Wed, Feb 11, 2015 at 3:33 PM

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In addition to our conversations with Janet, we also sat down with an Indianapolis-based kink educator and leather community titleholder Samantha, who put together this helpful list of terms for any newbies wanting to dip their toes in the proverbial pool. Just keep an open mind, be respectful, and have fun!

Fetlife.com: The web's most popular social network for kink-friendly folks. This is a good resource for finding groups, clubs and social events. Janet and Samantha really want to meet you and talk, and she suggests finding the leaders of a local club and contacting them. "Most of these events are just social, for friends to chat and meet up," she says, so don't go thinking you'll be hauled up on a stage to be flogged in front of strangers.

Although the "Kinky & Popular" feature has become an endless parade of attention-seeking writings and lithe young not-necessarily kinky females receiving viral "loves" from legion heterosexual male users, there is real vibrant, local community to be found here. Create a profile, flesh it out as much or as little as you feel comfortable and turn your attention to the "Places" and "Events" tabs to find upcoming events and groups near your city. Use these to locate and come out to an event as soon as possible.

Slosh, Munch, Play Party: These are the most common terms for community gatherings.

Slosh: Set in a bar, great for socializing casually and mingling freely. Not advisable to actually get sloshed.

Munch: Sit-down dinner at a restaurant, often with a private room and a presentation or discussion topic.

Play Party: These are more often held in private homes or hotels. They include socializing and "scenes" (defined later) that most often do not include penetrative sex. You can expect to need references, prior registration or to be otherwise vetted in order to attend. The larger ones include educational workshops, which are incredibly valuable.

Baby steps people: begin with the first two types of events. Show up, be friendly, lead with conversation that's suited for making any new acquaintances rather than with your crotch.

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Top (Dominant, Sadist, Master, Mistress etc.): These folks generally like to be on the active or "giving" end of activities and interactions. Past that, make no assumptions. Ask people what their labels mean to them.

Bottom (Submissive, Masochist, Slave, Property etc.): Conversely, these folks generally prefer to be on the "receiving" end of things- in pre-negotiated, agreed-to interactions. These are grown-ass adults and not obligated to bottom to you or anyone.

Switch: Just what it sounds like. Many people's preferences vary based on the activity, the connection between themselves and their partner, or even the day.

Negotiation: When you meet someone with whom you've found a mutual, explicitly stated interest in exploring, talk!

What have you done before? What did you like or dislike? It's crucial that you don't embellish. Everyone was new and inexperienced once, better to be honest about it.

What specific activities interest you? Even more importantly: How do you want to see yourself? What do you want to feel? Surrender, struggle, endurance, trust, simplicity? Competence, control, exhilaration, adoration, protectiveness? Talk about how to get there together.

RELATED: More resources for the curious

Scene: An interaction between two enthusiastically consenting adults that has a set beginning and end, which might include but is not limited to: impact play such as spanking, caning or flogging, sensation play with clips, needles or mild electrical currents, bondage with rope or leather, dirty talk, giving/following instructions, or role play.

Safeword: Communicates crucial information in one word. Most folks use "Yellow" and "Red."

Yellow: Slow down / Check in with me

Red: Stop immediately / I am done. Sometimes people have difficulty being verbal while in the throes of (fill in the blank), so it is always wise to have hand signals in place that serve to get the top's attention and to "tap out" (Waving one hand and then waving both, for example)

Trust that your partner, whether top or bottom, wants you both to have an enjoyable experience! Do not be afraid to use your safeword, and do not hesitate to adjust accordingly if your partner uses it. This mutual trust is KEY.


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Sarah Murrell covers all things food, beverages and sometimes gives decent sex and relationship advice. You can stream her consciousness on Twitter, if that's where life has brought you.

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