A Glossary for BDSM

Have you come across terms in articles, blog posts or on dating apps that you’re sure are sexual but you’re apprehensive to Google them?

Let me provide a glossary to help you understand what on Earth is going on…

(In no way is this an expansive list – this has come about by followers on my social media channels asking for clarification on these terms below.)

Aftercare: As much as we love the BDSM, we’ve gotta reset our relationship. Cup of tea? Please. A bubble bath? Now you’re talking. Tonnes of cuddles? God, yes!

BDSM: A smorgasbord of delights: Bondage and Discipline, Domination and Submission or Sadism and Masochism.

Bottom: Not my peachy tush. The one of us who’s more submissive in this scene.

Consent: Explicit, enthusiastic, implied but never taken for granted or assumed. Also, can be retracted at any time.

Dom: Probably a charming British man but also the person who’s dominating another.

Drop: When a scene physically or emotionally takes it out of you – whether you’re a Dom or a Sub. Cue tears, feeling low or physical shakes. Guess what you need urgently? Aftercare! (See above.)

Edge Play: For experienced BDSM babes only. Sometimes interpreted as testing the edge of what someone can bear such as a Total Power Exchange (see also: soft limits and hard limits). Sometimes considered to mean risky, potentially dangerous acts such as breath, knife, needle, water, scat (etc) play.

Edging: Are you gonna cum? No, but almost, ah, not quite. I can see you’re so close, almost, nearly, nope! Ah, go on then.

Fetish: If I want to feel horny and enjoy sex, I’ve gotta do this sexual act or have this object with me.

Golden Shower: One of us needs a wee, but why stop the fun?! Two birds, one stone?

Hard Limit: No, I’m not doing this. Not even if you ask nicely or I’ve had a few glasses of wine.

Impact Play: Whip me, slap me or give me a spanking. I’ve been terribly, terribly naughty…

Kink: This thing isn’t usually considered sexual, but I find it hot, hot, hot!

Masochist: Inflict pain upon me (or humiliate me) – I like it.

Play: All the fun BDSM activities we get up to.

RACK: Risk Aware Consensual Kink. Explore your kinks, know the risks and make sure you consent!

Sadist: Can I spank you? It’ll turn me on.

Safe Word: Our secret code for “Stop!”

Scene: Two fold: 1) The Amazing BDSM Community and 2) Let’s decide on the beginning, middle and end of our BDSM play. Maybe we have sex, maybe we don’t, but we know how we’re going to get our kicks.

Soft Limit: I’m not certain I want to try this, but I may want to test the waters.

Sploshing: I don’t want to choose between food and sex, so I’ll have both.

SSC: Keep it Safe, Sane (don’t be pissed or high) and Consensual.

Sub: Tell me what to do; I’m at your service.

Switch: Sometimes I wanna boss you around, sometimes I want you to take control.

Top: You guessed it! Not my T-shirt, but the one of us who’s dominating the other.

Topping from the Bottom: You said you wanted me to take charge but look at you, telling me what to do. Such a backseat driver.

Total Power Exchange: You lead this relationship and everything we do. I’ll put my feet up.

Vanilla: What we call those non-kinky people.

To find out what the Acronyms on Dating Sites mean, follow this link to a previous post.

Image by Klaus Hausmann from Pixabay

8 Comments Add yours

  1. Helen says:

    This is a good start, but there is a whole bunch of things that I can think of, that I’m personally into and are even quite popular in the community, but that are also missing here. Brats, sensation play (as a fellow masochist, sensation play > impact play any day!), Daddy Dom kink to name but a few, and there will probably be more that others can think of as well. Also, you missed bondage? I’m totally judging 😉 I think we need to be very careful when creating informative pieces on this topic because we need to be clear that what we write is a start, but it is by no means a finite guide to what BDSM really encompasses. As you rightfully say – BDSM is a whole smorgasbord of deliciousness, and we need to be quite clear about that!
    On the more serious side, we also need to pay credence to things like kink-shaming and the longest abbreviation of all, YKINMK(YKIOK) (Your Kink Is Not My Kink (Your Kink Is OK), which means to say that different people may have different hard limits or kinks, and it is crucial in this community that we don’t judge what BDSM looks like for other people. I’m more than happy to try and come up with some other terms to help out as well, if you like, just give me a shout 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for adding so many important elements! It was certainly not meant to be a complete glossary; this has come about from social media research with followers wanting to know more about certain facets of BDSM.
      But if you’d like to work together, we could create a much more expansive glossary☺️. Drop me a message on my Get In Touch page and we can go from there. X

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Helen says:

        It’s no worries at all, as I said I’m always more than happy to help. I shall have a think and add it to my to-do list then drop you an email tomorrow 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Maybe it’s just the way I’m reading it but I disagree with Masochist equalling hit me. It means you like pain and humiliation but that can be achieved in lots of way and not just straight up assaulting someone.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, you’re absolutely right. I wrote it quickly (but didn’t intend for it to read as assault). I’ll amend it – thank you for flagging this up.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It’s ok it’s a good piece I’m just very aware there are people who take advantage of certain situations in the name of BDSM.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Yes, there really are people who take advantage.

        Liked by 1 person

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