Key Terms

NEW TO THE LIFESTYLE? Here are some quick links to get you up to speed on the basic terminology and definitions.


B&D: Bondage and Discipline

D&S: Dominance and Submission

S&M: Sadism and Masochism

(Erotic pleasure from causing or receiving pain)

Another term commonly used for BDSM or Kink is:


(Risk Aware Consensual Kink)

BDSM is first and foremost a very complex identity, community and sexual practice which are not the same for every individual. While mild BDSM is being shown in mainstream movies like 50 Shades of Grey, these are only one kind of representation of what BDSM can mean.

  • A common phrase in BDSM is “Safe, Sane, Consensual”
  • BDSM play should not compromise an individual’s safety. Nor should individuals be under the influence of drugs or alcohol. BDSM play does not condone rape, so all parties must fully consent to all part of the play, before, during and afterwards.
  • BDSM is really about understanding the power dynamics within our society and at times exaggerating them or challenging them.
  • While the S&M part of BDSM is about pain, whether receiving or giving, not all BDSM is about pain.
  • The largest sexual organ in the human body is the brain, and BDSM is about amusing and engaging the brain with various kinks and fetishes that most pleases it sexually or sensually.
    • BDSM can range from mild like dressing up and doing roleplay to the most extreme or edge play as it is most commonly called.

    While this list is extensive there are infinitely more terms and kinks. The list is as endless as our imaginations.

    Common Term

    Top/ Dominant/ Domme/ Master: The one who controls the scene and directs the play.

    Bottom/ Submissive/ Sub/ Slave: The one who submits to the control of the Dom.

    Switch: Someone who identifies as both dominant and submissive depending on the situation and partner.

    Scene/ Session: A structured and planned play date.

    Safe Word: To signal stop immediately. Ie Pineapple or Red

    Contracts: Ways to negotiate terms with a play partner.

    Subspace: Head space of bliss for Subs.

    Domspace: Head space of bliss for Doms.

    Lifestyle Dom/ Sub: 24/7 BDSM relationship.

    Dominatrix: Usually female Dom

    Leather Community: A community which specifically values and is united by a common love of leather.

KINK: In human sexuality, kinkiness is any unconventional sexual practices, concepts or fantasies. The term derives from the idea of a “bend” (cf. a “kink”) in one’s sexual behaviour, to contrast such behaviour with “straight” or “vanilla” sexual mores and proclivities. The term kink has been claimed by some who practice sexual fetishism as a term or synonym for their practices, indicating a range of sexual and sexualistic practices from playful to sexual objectification and certain paraphilias.

Kink sexual practices go beyond what are considered conventional sexual practices as a means of heightening the intimacy between sexual partners. Some draw a distinction between kink and fetishism, defining the former as enhancing partner intimacy, and the latter as replacing it. Because of its relation to “normal” sexual boundaries, which themselves vary by time and place, the definition of what is and is not kink varies widely as well. Source

Kinks and Fetishes

  • Humiliation: erotic pleasure from being humiliated or causing humiliation.
  • Bondage: Tying or binding an individual with various materials. Cock and Ball Torture (CBT): From mild tickling to much more extreme.
  • Erotic Electrostimulation: Using electrical devices specifically made for erotic play like Violet/ Neon wands or ElectroStim kits.
  • Edge Play: The most extreme and dangerous Fetishes.
  • Impact Play: The use of tools like floggers and paddles to cause pain and possibly leaving marks.
  • Wet Play: Erotic stimulation from playing with bodily fluids.
  • Medical Play: Erotic pleasure from medical themed play and medical procedures.
  • Age Play: Roleplaying different ages differences. Ex: Mommy/ Baby.
  • Roleplaying: Using costumes or props to play different roles for erotic purposes. Ex: Cops/Robbers
  • Suspension: Suspending someone from ceiling for erotic purposes.
  • Wax Play: Dripping melted wax on partner.
  • Gender Play: Changing one’s gender during playing for erotic purposes.

SWINGER: Swinging, also known as wife swapping or partner swapping, is a non-monogamous behavior in which both singles and partners in a committed relationship engage in sexual activities with others as a recreational or social activity.

The phenomenon of swinging, or at least its wider discussion and practice, is regarded by some as arising from the freer attitudes to sexual activity after the sexual revolution of the 1960s, the invention and availability of the contraceptive pill and the emergence of treatments for many of the sexually transmitted diseases that were known at that time.

The swinger community sometimes refers to itself as “the lifestyle”, or as “the alternative lifestyle”.


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