This is not a safe space. Preconceived notions about self may get shattered. Unconscious patterns may be revealed. You may not like what you encounter. Fighting one’s Demons isn’t always pretty. Beautiful, but only if you’ve cultivated a taste for destruction.

Part of submitting to life is accepting that there is not always such thing as a guarantee of a safe space. Not even in the womb can one be promised safety. Creating a safe space is a beautiful ideology, but impossible to promise another when it comes to practice. One can never guarantee complete and total safety, as much as we may like to. It can be dangerous to assume you have the ability to provide someone with a safe space. Everyone’s triggers differ. The process of exploring self and how we relate is never a completely safe space. All we can do is offer openness and accountability for what comes up. “Safety” is not a guarantee.

I believe that people who preach “Safe, Sane and Consensual” ideologies are providing false assurances. People who offer you a “safe space” don’t necessarily know what “safe” looks like to you. They don’t know when a place that was “safe” for you suddenly becomes “unsafe”. This could be caused by a word, a look, a touch or a subtle energy shift. This can be caused by something completely imperceptible to the other party. We can use our intuition and learned experience to hold space for others, but anyone who assumes this means the space is safe, risks making the assumption that they know you better than you know yourself. I think that the terminology RACK (Risk Aware and Consensual Kink) which is used within the BDSM community is most accurate. But even then, this terminology is often only used with edge-play.

We are all impacted by our experiences and implicated by our current and previous relations. Part of the work that I do, is to try and provide space for people to explore how previous relationships have impacted them and to investigate the patterns of how they relate to others and to themselves. In the dungeon, we explore how the traumas of existing in the world affect our lives, and how this energy can get trapped in the body and wreak havoc in our lives. We explore how this trauma can create unhealthy patterns and ways of relating and can unconsciously influence all of our actions.

Part of this work means the relationship between myself and my subject becomes the stage where the dance of “re-relating” takes place. This often involves examining how power dynamics have influenced our lives and what it brings up for us when we feel powerless. Do you feel freed by submission? Does it bring up greater anxieties of self-worth? Do you experience these two dissonant feelings simultaneously? Becoming aware of the Self is never comfortable. This is why many find meditation so challenging.  

I do my best to hold space for whatever forces come into play and to create a gentle resolution to ease you back into life as you know it. However, it can become difficult to make the transition back once you’ve become aware. The things that come up when exploring power dynamics, devotion and submission can’t always be easily left in the dungeon. At times, growth can looks like destruction and effort must be devoted to rebuilding. This is what karma is: working through our shit and collecting more. A continual ebbing and flowing of growth.

When engaging in intense emotional play, it is important to do the work of self-exploration. This benefits both you and your partner. I encourage you to ask yourself the following questions, and do your best to communicate what comes up to your partner(s):

-What makes you feel safe?

-What are your triggers? Hard limits? These things can be physical activities, emotional boundaries, words, a certain type of touch, lighting, noises… It is not just limited to BDSM activities.

-What makes you want to explore play?

-How do your previous experiences influence your sexuality and experience of submission?

-What does submission look like to you? What does submission mean to you?

-What do you hope to get out of play/exploration?

-How do you feed your masochist? On a conscious and unconscious basis, emotional and physical level?

-What are your fears? Are they things to be explored or avoided?

-What does aftercare look like to you?

-What does the ideal session look like to you? Physically, mentally, emotionally?

-Where have things gone wrong in the past and how can you avoid them? Or what has prevented you from exploring in the past?

What I offer is a stage to explore, to communicate, to hold and to be held accountable. I wish to explore deeply with people who are willing to engage in an emotional exchange and offer their vulnerability to me. I enjoy exploring with those wishing to explore complete submission. To the process, and to me. This is my humble offering. No more. No less.

 

(I do not recommend intense emotional play for someone without a support system. I encourage anyone who is exploring intense and ongoing relational-affective BDSM with me to begin work with a BDSM-aware mental health practitioner. I am not a mental health practitioner.)

 

Resources:

There Are No Safe Spaces.

2016 Kaleidoscopes of Chaos – How Traumatic Boundary Violations Destroy The Capacity for Self-Care

 

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