With 36% of the country breaking out the handcuffs, blindfolds, and collars regularly during sex, it’s safe to say BDSM is here to stay in mainstream America. Everyone and their mother’s (literally…sorry for the visual) are embracing kink in all it’s beautiful shapes and sizes. That’s a very good thing if you ask us.
This mainstream acceptance of all types of sexuality – from vanilla to red-hot, from LGBT to as hetero as you can get, from the front door to the back – is what we’ve been pushing at Hustler for decades. Embrace your sexuality and don’t apologize, ever.
The widespread appeal of BDSM usually focuses on only doms and subs, though. It leaves our good friends, the switches, out of the conversation. That’s not alright. We need an America that embraces ALL sexual orientations and kinks. That includes the folks that like to get tied up and then do a little tying up of their own.
Keep reading for tips on living the switch lifestyle, how to move between the two headspaces, and more important than anything else – how to embrace your fluid role in a society that isn’t comfortable with gray areas.
We have an entire guide devoted to teaching you how to be a good dom. Make sure to check it out for a detailed exploration of what it means to be a responsible dom. Keeping that in mind, this section is going to be short and sweet.
Communicate Again & Again
There’s no such thing as too much communication when it comes to domming. You want to go over everything with your partner(s) again and again. You want to make sure that they’re comfortable with everything you want to do. This means don’t settle for a simple “yeah, getting paddled sounds cool.” Go over your kinks, their kinks, your limits, their limits, and a lot more in detail. Trust us, this type of open and honest communication is going to make everything that much hotter once the clothes come off.
Practice Proactive Safety
This doesn’t just mean making sure you have condoms, lube, and toy cleaner (you’re definitely going to want all of those though!). We’re talking about making sure you’re using safe rope to tie your partner up (don’t make the classic 50 Shades’ hardware store mistake), making sure everyone involved is regularly tested for STDs, practicing blood, knife, or needle play safety, and A LOT more.
Choose Safe Words
Choosing good safe words is a practical example of both of the above points. You’re choosing them while communicating everything beforehand and you’re practicing proactive safety. Take a minute and bask in the glow of being a responsible and kinky adult!
Just like our dom guide, we have another one that teaches you how to be a good sub. Give that one a read for everything you need to know about subbing, but for now we’re only going to explore the most important parts.
Some people love being thrown around in the bedroom (struggle sex, anyone? [link once article is live]), but aren’t submissive anywhere outside of your four walls. Others are lifestyle subs who get off knowing their dom is their master in every sense of the word. There isn’t a right and wrong way to sub, but you’ll definitely want to discuss which end of the spectrum you fall on with your partner before anything sexy starts.
To Be Poly or Not to Be Poly
The age-old question! Part of the excitement in a dom/sub relationship is the power dynamic. This can lead to your dom wanting to have more than one sub. Ask yourself if you’re comfortable with this. If you are, awesome. If you aren’t, that’s awesome too! This goes back to setting limits. Your dom needs to know exactly what you’re okay with and, if having multiple partners is a deal breaker, they deserve to know.
BDSM Switch Tips
Now that we’ve covered the vanilla dom/sub stuff, let’s get wild! Embrace your inner switch with these Hustler Hollywood-approved tricks of the trade.
Identify Your Dom & Sub Preferences
This is really just a fancy way of saying find out what you like about domming, subbing, and if there is any overlap between the two. Make no mistake, though, this is easier said than done.
Maybe you love when your partner uses a body sex swing to control the rhythm and speed of your orgasm. Maybe you like making your partner wear a puppy plug to sit, stay, and lie down. Maybe you get off on being locked in a chastity cage. Whatever your particular fetishes and kinks are – identify them.
After that, it’s time to think about them from the opposite end of the spectrum. If your putting your partner in a muzzle, do you also like wearing one? If you’re a fan of nipple clamp cock rings (and you should be!), would you get off seeing your partner in one?
Whatever your preferred kink, flip it. If you’re into it, awesome. If not, don’t worry because you’ll find something you like soon enough. In fact, a large part of learning what your switch fetishes are comes from being part of the larger BDSM community.
Embrace the Community
This BDSM switch tip can be kind of overwhelming. After all, being a switch is hard enough with a limited number of partners. Now you’re opening yourself up to the larger BDSM community and that comes with a number of important considerations. We’ll get to those in just a second, but for now it’s enough to know that this isn’t as overwhelming as it sounds!
There are an almost unlimited number of ways to get plugged into your local BDSM community. You can start by getting on larger sites like FetLife, AmericanBDSM, or any BDSM app. You also might want to check out BDSM subreddits but be careful because Reddit can get toxic, fast.
The people you meet on these will introduce you to your local dom and sub communities. From there, it’s as simple as meeting new people who accept and embrace your switch mindset. Speaking of mindsets and headspaces…
Give Yourself Time to Switch
Being in dom mode requires a certain headspace. Being an obedient sub requires the polar opposite mindset. While some people can switch between the two at will (we envy you!), most require some time and space to make the switch.
Remember, the same things that turned you on so much you couldn’t wait to throw your partner down on the counter and ravage them probably aren’t going to be the same things that you want done to you. This is part of learning your specific dom and sub preferences. After you know what they are, you’re likely going to need to mentally, emotionally, and sexually prepare yourself to move between the two.
Welcome the world of fluid power dynamics! It can be confusing and overwhelming at times, but there’s nothing quite like it. Don’t believe us? Then get out there and try it for yourself! Make sure to grab a pleasure kit or three beforehand, though. Your partner will thank you afterwards when you’re both lying in a pool of sweat and blissing out on those post-sex endorphins!