Negotiation 101

So far, most of the posts here have focused on myself and Phoenix, our journey and our relationship. We have occasionally touched on topics such as negotiation and consent, but have yet to devote a post to it. This is that post. This is the post where I put on my teacher glasses and tell you that what we do is not “safe”.

Phoenix and I practice RACK: risk aware consensual kink. In essence, this means that we accept that there is an inherent risk in BDSM, however, being aware of that risk allows all parties involved to provide informed consent. The important thing here is informed consent. Consent given without all the pertinent information is not informed consent. You wouldn’t sign consent papers to have a kidney removed without being informed of the risks. Similarly, you should not consent to BDSM activities without being informed.

If you are new to BDSM or need help finding a starting point for negotiations, I recommend a yes/no/maybe list. In essence, you would write down all of the kinky activities you can think of and then mark them with yes/no/maybe. You can find multiple checklists online, as well as one at the bottom of this post, if you prefer a form to fill out.

While the yes/no/maybe list is an excellent start, it is important to remember that the key to successful negotiation is COMMUNICATION. I cannot emphasize that enough. If you are hesitant about something, but willing to try it, let your dominant know why you are hesitant. Be honest about your fears and/or concerns. Most importantly, do not be afraid to have limits, and to expect your partner to respect them.

Many sites provide checklists for the submissive to fill out; however, I would recommend that you have your dominant/top fill one out as well. This will give you both a way to see where the middle ground is, and set the “fence around the playground”. The document I’ve linked at the bottom of this post also includes information about potential health risks, history of STDs, and ICE (in case of emergency) instructions. Please feel free to download this document, alter it as needed, and use it to your own personal benefit.

Negotiation Worksheet

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Urethral Sounding 101

This was written in collaboration with several friends in the lifestyle. None of us are experts. These are just some of our observations. Sounding is not limited to men. Women can enjoy urethral sounding as well. Therefore the following is not gender specific.

Safety

  • Get your own sounds, preferably stainless steel for easy sanitizing. While, technically, you can use other objects for sounding, be very cautious not to use objects that are not a solid piece (i.e. No Q-tips, markers, pens, etc.) Should a piece break or fall off, you are guaranteed to need medical attention.
  • Sounds, like any other toy are personal, and should not be passed around.
  • Before beginning, do some research. There are many “how to” guides on the internet. Pay attention to the advice given. It will make your experience better. If possible, have someone show you how in person.
  • Make sure to use lube, but know what’s in your lube. Glycerin or glycol are a no go for sounding. These are sugar-based ingredients and can cause painful UTIs. One recommended lube is Surgilube, which can be found on Amazon. That is a medical grade lubrication used by doctors, and is free of any ingredients that might create a breeding ground for infection.
  • Keep your lube clean. Do not touch the tip of the tube to the sound as this can create a cross-contamination.
  • Don’t force the sound in. Let gravity pull it down. Forcing the sound further than it will naturally go can cause internal injury.
  • The initial insertion my sting a little. Take it slow and allow yourself to get relaxed and comfortable. Like any other bodily orifice, you have to start small with insertion. Don’t use the largest sound in the set if you’ve never done any sounding before.
  • You may experience some irritation after a session. If it does not go away within a couple of days, seek medical attention. Any kind of blood in your urine or ejaculate following sounding needs medical attention.
  • As with any kind of kinky play, pay attention to your body. Know when to stop.
  • (Males) If you are using a sound with an S-Curve, removing the sound may be easier if you wait for your erection to subside.
  • (Males), if using a solid plug, remove it before ejaculating. Not removing the plug will create retrograde ejaculation, which, while not medically harmful can cause infertility.

Tips for improved enjoyment

  • You don’t need a partner to enjoy sounding. If you have a partner, make sure it is someone that you are relaxed and comfortable with. Know your limits, and be comfortable communicating this with your partner.
  • Once you know you enjoy sounding, consider investing in a plug. This will stay in place better and allow for easier masturbation or external stimulation.
  • You can use vibrators directly on the sound, or indirectly through the skin, to enhance the sensations. You can also purchase vibrating sounds.
  • It is possible to stimulate the prostate with sounds; however, use caution not to force the sound in further. Prostate stimulation can be achieved be gently rocking the sound back and forth. The key word is gently. A very small motion at the tip of the sound equals a very big sensation at the other end.
  • (Males) You do not have to be erect to begin sounding. In fact, being flaccid in the beginning can make things easier, especially if you are planning to use a larger sound than your previous session.
  • Remember, each person’s anatomy is different. Choose sounds that match the person you intend to use them on, and the purpose you plan to use them for.

Remember to have fun. If you and/or your partner are not having fun, do not feel pressured to continue.