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The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Yes, I consent … but to what?

Photo credit: Bobbie Rae Jones
Photo credit: Bobbie Rae Jones

A friend and I had a session, where sex is not necessarily involved but a side of our needs are met. It could be a need for control or a need for punishment, but it helps to allow a part of one’s self to have release that otherwise is not met in our daily lives. This experience brought up a great point in my mind.

In the session he was being dominant with me as I was in the submissive role. I consented to being bound, gagged and spanked. We had earlier conversations on things that I was interested in exploring, and I trusted him enough to give him control at designated times or spaces.

Before we started, my friend said that if at any point I reached my limit I was supposed to hum “Happy Birthday.” If I was not gagged it would be the word “red.”

With so many conversation going on about what is consent and what it isn’t, I realized I have a lot of respect for people in the kink community on this subject. The more I talk about sex the more I realize that the kink community encourages all parties to be actively engaged in giving consent.

There are many stereotypes or assumptions that we have to break.

  • Once a person consents they are saying yes to every time something might happen (sex, foreplay, whatever).
  • When a person consents to something kinky then it’s okay to try whatever you want.

The outcome when making these assumptions can be really bad to a person’s mental or physical well-being.

I had a weird experience when I went to wake up a partner in the morning and we ended up having sex. In a dominant and submissive relationship it’s about wanting to be submissive to please a dominant, but for me that morning I didn’t want that and felt very used and dirty afterward. This was with a person that I was very close to and trusted, and it gave me such conflicting feelings. After that it took me a bit before I wanted to be intimate again.

Another learning experience: I consented to playing with D/s roles (role-play that involves power exchange), but we never had an actual conversation about what I was consenting to. That experience was a time where I would have used a safe word. The aftereffects were feelings of extreme anxiety when around the person and caused me to spin out.

Since being more involved in kink I have learned there is a conversation that should be had regarding what a person is consenting to and what their limitations are. Sometimes people don’t know they have crossed a line unless they are told and given the opportunity to correct their actions in future. Like for me, people tend to ask about the possibilities of a threesome, and that is a hard limit whether in the kink community or not.

A couple ways I have experienced this is by being around people that encourage communication and honesty.

  • A check-in during sex or other fun activities is as easy as asking your partner, “Are you okay?”
  • Talk about what will be done in the session. This can open up the conversation of what is OK and what might need to wait for a later date. There can also be times that something didn’t sound fun before but now is enticing, so when a partner is checking in it opens up the chance to try what had been mentioned earlier.

When a session comes to an end there is a period where the dominant will give aftercare to the submissive.

During different types of play the mind and body are pushed to some intense limits, and this period is where the submissive can come down and snap back into reality.

A dominant is also given the chance to confirm that the person is OK and if there was something amiss during the session. They can talk about it and figure out how the mishap can be avoided in the future.

Joann Chevaillier can be reached at [email protected] or @jmc_8284 on Twitter.

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Joann Chevaillier, Staff Writer

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