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BDSM CONTRACTS: All Beginner Couples Need to Know

If the wheels in your head went spinning after reading this title, I’ll need you to hold your horses for a bit. Yes, the reaction is the same when I broach this subject to most people; BDSM contracts. Is that a thing? Of course, it is. While the practice of BDSM is solely for pleasure, venturing into serious sub/dom relationships nine out of ten times requires a BDSM contract. Let’s not forget that BDSM involves a lot of power play and exchange that could get out of hand when a player doesn’t practice within the boundaries of respect and sanity.

This article will not only explain what BDSM contracts are but will also answer all the common questions that pop up when it comes to BDSM contracts. The first one is what BDSM contracts are. A BDSM contract is a documented agreement centered on any aspect of power exchange. One great thing BDSM does is that it naturally creates room for negotiation and open communication. Did I just say negotiation? Yes, I did! This is some serious stuff, guys. There has to be something guiding how you and your partner play. BDSM contracts differ; ranging from a non-complicated handwritten list to an actual legally binding document.

Just so we have things spelled out, I’m going to outline why BDSM contracts are a thing.

  • They determine the duration of your relationship with a player. Is it long-term or short-term? If your partner is someone you are in a serious relationship with, this still applies. Not everyone may want to be tied up at every sexual encounter and if this is the wish of your significant other then you’ve got to respect that. Some couples have BDSM sessions once a month, twice a week, and so on. It all depends on what is in the contract.
  • They develop a framework authority.
  • They define goals in the relationship. Why are you both doing this? Is it to strengthen your bond? (No pun intended) Are there psychological implications for either or both of you? Is the relationship purely for BDSM encounters or is there more to it? A contract helps you define all of this.
  • They enclose all the punishments, margins, and boundaries that define the relationship. That way, if your dom or domme is whipping out something that’s not in the book, you have grounds to say “Hey, I didn’t consent to this”.
  • They extend the role-play aspect.

Moving forward, I guess this is the right time to put it out there that BDSM contracts are NOT legal. I get a lot of people asking me this in real life and online. There’s no way to overemphasize this. Consenting to a master/slave relationship with someone has no legal parameters whatsoever. This means you can’t sue your partner for not eating you out or something like that or wanting to end the relationship before the agreed time.

How do I make a BDSM contract? Well, the thing is there’s no ‘how’ per se. While the degree of formality and depth of your relationship with the person play a role, there’s no standard way of drawing up a contract for BDSM play. Your BDSM contract could be scribbled haphazardly on a burger napkin or over drinks at the bar. It could also be a 10-page document with actual stamps and fields for signatures or a verbal agreement. Nobody cares. It all depends on what you and your partner want: something you need to spruce things up in a relationship? A lifestyle you want to imbibe or a master/slave thing. The bottom line is, just do your thing. One more thing you should know is the fact that you pricked your thumbs and signed a sheaf of the document with a blood stamp doesn’t make a BDSM relationship valid. I repeat you cannot sue something for what you consider a ‘breach of contract’.

That being said, let’s look at what the average BDSM contract contains:

  1. Control areas
  2. Concessions
  3. Safe words, must limits, hard limits, soft limits
  4. Punishments
  5. Rewards
  6. Roles for subs/doms
  7. Peripheral players
  8. Phrasing and language
  9. Confidentiality
  10. Grounds for termination
  11. Collaring

Now that we’ve got all of that out of the way, I’m going to do you all a favor because I hate to see new couples have a hard time due to misinformation or no information at all. For this part of this article, I’m going to give you a very concise example of what a BDSM contract should look like and the terms it should address. You can thank me later!

Contract sample

1.0.0 Role of the Master

This involves agreeing to care for the slave. The master must always see to the safety and general well-being of the slave for the duration of time in which they own the slave. Other roles include training, loving, punishing, and using the slave as they desire. A master in any sub/dom relationship must welcome the duty of treating the slave well and must stay committed to it.

1.0.1 Role of the Slave

The slave is obligated to acquiesce to the maser in everything. One of such things is the ownership of their body. In a Slave Contract, the body of the slave belongs to the master who is free to use it as they see fit; within defined boundaries of course!

2.0.0 Slave’s Veto

Where and when appropriate, the slave has the power to veto any command issued by the master. Grounds for invoking this power must be as agreed or under certain outlined circumstances such as:

  1. A command posing a danger to the life of a slave
  2. A command that involves breaking the law
  3. A command likely to cause psychological trauma
  4. A command that may be physically damaging to the slave

3.00 Secrecy

Unless both slave and master agree to keep their arrangement public, all outward evidence of the relationship will be kept an absolute secret.

4.0.0 Punishment

Any punishment inflicted by the master is binding in the slave who must agree to receive any punishment.

4.0.1 Boundaries of Punishment

All punishments meted out will be accepted by the slave but they must be within certain boundaries for the protection of the slave from circumstances such as intentional abuse. Abuse could be in the form of:

  1. Extreme loss of circulation
  2. Drawing blood
  3. Losing consciousness
  4. Burns
  5. Holding back essentials such as water or food
  6. Causing internal bleeding

5.0.0 Permanent Physical Harm

The master is entrusted with the responsibility of ensuring that no lasting harm comes to the body of the slave being that the slave’s body now belongs to the master. If the slave is physically and permanently harmed, it is now permissible for the contract or agreement to be terminated immediately as the slave desires.

Examples of permanent bodily harm include:

  1. Permanent mark to the skin
  2. Death
  3. Any unaccepted loss of hair of the slave
  4. Damages resulting from the loss of bodily function or mobility
  5. Sexually transmitted diseases
  6. Body piercings that result in permanent holes

5.0.1 Others

The slave must seek the master’s approval before taking any other lovers or masters.

6.0.0 Alteration of Contract

Pulling out of a contract is only permissible when both parties consent to a termination of the contract. Should the master and slave choose to alter the terms of the contract, destroying the old contract is compulsory, and a new one must be drawn up and signed.

7.0.0 Conclusion of Contract

The termination of the contract can be time-based or breach-based. Should any of this occur, all evidence that traces back to a slave/master relationship such as the contract must be destroyed?

As you can see, everything here is stipulated to protect the best interest of both players. Yes, I know I mentioned ‘death’ somewhere in the fifth segment of the sample contract but it’s just a formality trust me. BDSM hardly ever poses a risk of death. Think of it more as a way in which the master can guarantee that they won’t let anything bad happen to you. While this sample is hardly thorough, it’s a basic draft of things you and your partner should be highlighting in your contract and also an insight into other stuff you could graft into a contract as well. You both could list every practicable kink in the book and choose what scale either of you is willing to take part in every single one.

Now if you are a dom/domme, note that while unplanned sessions or the random spank once in a while could be welcomed, no one wants to be slammed with something they can’t deal with or an irrational punishment. You want to please your sub not traumatize them.

If you are reading this and you’re a sub, you must have a sharp eye for red flags. Remember that part of this article that talked about withholding essentials like food or water. A master shouldn’t do that in the name of punishment. Everything within a BDSM relationship is consensual, but there are some things you naturally should not be consenting to. Such as punishments that are harmful to your health. If your partner is not in the medical profession then they shouldn’t be making decisions that involve or may affect your health.

One more thing, never downplay the importance of your free will. BDSM contracts are not legally binding so don’t think you have to remain in a relationship all your life because you signed a piece of paper. You are always free to walk away.

Consider yourself lucky if you can find a partner that is responsible enough to keep your relationship Safe, Sober, Sane, and Consensual; someone you can trust. Trust is one of the key foundations of a lasting slave/master relationship. If there’s no trust, then the contract may as well be used to line shelves or something/ that’s how much it would be worth.

Now that you’ve read this article, go sit that person down and work out something that suits you both. You’ll be much better at it.

 

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