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Sex Expert Gives 'Fifty Shades'-Inspired BDSM Sex Advice

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Can you believe it's been six years since everyone was reading "Fifty Shades of Grey?" Despite the book being published years ago, there's still so much to learn about the practices that made the book so popular.

As a sex educator who is currently finishing a master's degree in sex therapy and sex education, I get a lot of questions about the practice of BDSM as it becomes more mainstream.

"Fifty Shades" is based on a sexual practices called BDSM. Although the book and movies certainly brought BDSM to the mainstream, many people still remain in the dark about what BDSM really is and know even less about how to go about it.

So get out the whips and chains! I'm about to teach you how to get real kinky.

Now, BDSM is an acronym standing for bondage, discipline, dominance, submission, sadism and masochism. OK, stop. You don't have to reach for your dictionary — I'm going to explain them.

Bondage

Bondage involves being restrained or tied up. I encourage beginners who are interested in this practice to check out their nearest sex shop to see if they offer a class on bondage.

There's a lot to learn with bondage, and it can be dangerous if done incorrectly. If you're looking to experiment and see if bondage is for you, start with something light and easy to get out of, like a tie or a pair of panties, for example.

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Discipline

Discipline in BDSM is going to be different for each person. Some people enjoy physical discipline, like spanking, while others enjoy verbal discipline.

Explore and see what you enjoy, but always make sure you are discussing this with your partner. You never want to cross a line you can't come back from.

If there are certain things that are verbally off limits for you, you need to tell your partner. One person may love being called a slut, while another may feel very shamed by that verbiage.

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If you are choosing to pursue physical discipline like spanking, do your research. There are certain zones on the body that are unsafe to be spanking and can be very dangerous. Do yourself a favor and have a good understanding of what is safe and what isn't.

Interested beginners can grab a spatula from the kitchen! If this is pleasurable for you, you can work your way up to all kinds of tools, like whips, paddles and floggers.

Dominance and submission

When you decide to engage in this type of play with your partner, one of you may emerge as the dominant partner while the other is the submissive. These relationships are commonly referred to as "D&S," "D/S" or "DS" relationships.

The dominant partner is in control while the submissive is being controlled and is on the receiving end of what the dominant partner is doing. There should never be a “scene” where the dominant and submissive do not discuss and agree on what is about to take place.

A D/S relationship relies entirely on trust and open communication. A fun way to explore this type of play is to engage in role play and do plenty of research.

A dominant/submissive relationship relies entirely on trust and open communication.

"Fifty Shades" is not the only movie you can turn to for an example of a dominant/submissive relationship. Why not have a movie night and see if any of those scenes are ones you'd be interested in reenacting?

Sadism and masochism

The sadist in the partnership is the individual who finds pleasure and enjoyment from inflicting pain on the other (the masochist). Now, you may be asking yourself, what type of person enjoys pain? The answer is, a lot of people! You can read more about the connection between pain and pleasure here.

If you decide you want to experiment with BDSM, it's imperative that you consider safety. Some of these practices can result in injury if you don't educate yourself and play smart with your partner.

One easy way to protect yourself is to develop a safe word to use with your partner. If this word is said, you and your partner understand it is time to stop.

If you're going to be gagged, a safe word would be pretty difficult, hmm? So instead, hold something weighted in your hand that your partner will hear when you drop. This noise can substitute as your safe word.

You should both check in with each other frequently to ensure you are comfortable and enjoying yourselves. Communication and consent are the two most important aspects of BDSM.

Communication and consent are the two most important aspects of BDSM.

After you're done, enjoy aftercare with your partner to bring you down from the high of the scene and help you to relax, recover and reconnect.

OK, sorry for interrupting. Grab your popcorn and get back to the movie!