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My girlfriend often asks me if I would like to practice BDSM or fetish activities with her.

I do not have problems with this kind of thing, but I'm afraid that she may not like it and have a bad experience. I really want to avoid that.
Every time I bring up these worries, she replies:

Whatever you offer me sexually, if it's with you I'll like it.

I want to set some rules, but am not sure how to do so.

How can I have a conversation about boundaries, or rules/limits with her, in order to avoid potentially traumatic experiences?


Background

She is 16 years old and I'm 18.

  • 7
    Now that I've read it again, it seems you want to accept, but make it very clear that this shouldn't be a bad experience for both of you, so you want to set some rules/ make some agreements before trying? If you already know which rules you want to set, this site might help you with how to set them? (Looking at the rest of the community here).. – Tinkeringbell May 31 '18 at 15:58
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    Thanks @Tinkeringbell, that was a useful comment. I'm waiting for a clear answer despite the downvotes... – DIDIx13 May 31 '18 at 16:01
  • Okay, so if that's the case... I think I need a little more clarification on what's the problem you're having with the setting the rules, is it because of what your girlfriend says, that she'll like everything? Are you worried she won't stick to the rules? Does she say this when you are discussing rules, have you tried bringing up/setting rules already? – Tinkeringbell May 31 '18 at 16:04
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    Thanks. I have to go now, but you may want to try and edit your question, to focus on e.g. how to have such a conversation which will hopefully lead to having rules and a pleasant experience, like we just discussed :) – Tinkeringbell May 31 '18 at 16:15
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    So, we can absolutely help you with how to discuss those ground rules with her, or how to find out what specifically she's interested in, or with other aspects of how to communicate about what will/won't or is/isn't working. But we maybe need it clarified a bit; right now it's pretty wide-open. We also can't help you decide what boundaries to set; that's up to you and her. – Cascabel May 31 '18 at 19:57
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Basically you need to have an informed consent conversation.

And when it comes to any kind of kink, that informed part is as important as the consent part. You both need to really understand what you're consenting to, before consent is given. This goes for the both of you.

This means talking about it. Be specific. BDSM is an incredibly broad topic encompassing an awful lot of fun and horrifying things, so consenting to a BDSM experience is effectively meaningless. If you two want to have a fun experience with this stuff, you'll need to have some honest conversations about what you each would like to do, what you wouldn't like to do, and what you expect to get out of the experience.

A lot of folks find that it's helpful to learn about different BDSM related kinks first. Read about it together, watch videos about it together. Not just pornography. Believe it or not, there are instructional materials available, and porn can be... misleading... to put it gently. This will give you two a place to start with conversations about specifically what you all would like to experiment with.

Some folks also find clubs and munches to be helpful educational resources. Check around online, it wouldn't be suprising if there's a local kink group that organizes social get togethers or classes for the particular flavor of kink that you two find an interest in.

Like most areas in any relationship, communication is key. It may take some practice to get comfortable talking about the kinky stuff, but it's necessary. And I do mean necessary. If it helps, start communication with the easier stuff and work your way up to the more advanced topics. What may start off as a series of somewhat awkward conversations may turn into a form of forplay with enough time, practice, and confidence.

Keep in mind that this will be an ongoing conversation. Consent can be withdrawn at any time, even in the middle of an activity. Always make room for that. Check in with your partner regularly during play. This is where most folks employ "safewords". The best safewords are simple, and easy to remember. I strongly recommend the red, yellow, green system.

  • Red = Stop!
  • Yellow = Slow down, use caution, ease off.
  • Green = Go!

Another option is the use of simple hand signals. Thumbs up, thumbs down. (For cases where verbal communication is more difficult)

I'm tempted to plead the fifth when it comes to backing this one up... Let's just say that, yes I have had these conversations in a number of different situations, and this answer is based upon some very personal experience.

  • 7
    +1 for withdrawal of consent at any time, the misunderstanding of this right can lead to unpleasant experiences perceived as inevitable because of the agreed "commitment". Also, I'd suggest to investigate whether she feels that talking about BDSM and sex in general is inappropriate. Some people think that talking about sex takes the "magic" out of it, and that could be an issue worth an approach on its own. – LinuxBlanket Jun 1 '18 at 9:15
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About the talk
Your question is focused on this step, preparation. Do it prior to a moment when discussing it could break a sexy vibe, because it isn't going to be a romantic talk per se, but it could get hot pretty quickly and be enjoyable if you start with the safety bits and move to the pleasure talk.

It's all about showing you care about her safety and pleasure.

  1. Make sure the setting is private so both of you can speak frankly and to be at a comfy place if the talk scales to something else.
  2. Make sure to talk about your loving bond being superior to what happens inside the room, so if something doesn't go as planed, no one holds grudges.
  3. Make sure she understands you only use proper high quality tools or toys that won't brake and offer to buy stuff she would like to use or bring her own
  4. Keep it real, don't set unreasonable expectations, so for example, if she wouldn't enjoy it if you mark her body as your property for her to be walking around with something under her clothes that reminds her of you, well, then don't do it, you are the one who knows her better than us.
  5. Warn her about some of the things that could happen during session, so for example, she wouldn't make the mistake to wear her favorite panties when you already warned you enjoy tearing her clothes apart (believe me, it happens)
  6. Make the experience better for her too by asking how she imagines a session would go, so you can fulfill her fantasies while at it
  7. Get a measure of how willing is she really. Start phrasing things with "what if I do -this or that- to you?": if she wants to be in control she will be mostly the one suggesting things, if she really wants you to be in control you will find yourself in a situation where you stopped using "ifs" and she welcomed that, and now you're telling her what you're going to do to her and then telling her what to do to you or to herself.

About what she asked from you
In my experience, the keyword rule works fine.
She already gave you a pretty clear insight into her approach to BDSM, she's up and willing for anything you desire, so the best failsafe would be that single word she can use as a protest to stop, it could be something simple like:

  • Stop (+ your name)
    or
  • Some other word she won't forget

That allows for you to welcome almost any event and not worry about whimpering and squealing, etc, unless she's clear about wanting you to stop.

Note
I didn't go on and on lecturing you about BDSM because you didn't ask for that. I'm assuming you have informed yourself thoroughly on this topic, BDSM can destroy your relationship if done carelessly or strengthen your loving bond if done masterfully, it's also not rocket science, be sure to provide a lot of pampering and gentle care afterwards, that's what works for me and my girlfriends.

My only notorious recommendation would be, not going overboard since the first time, you'll have to be very observant of her reactions to your advances before pushing forward, as to get an idea of the impressions that remain imprinted on her, so you can know if she really liked or hated something regardless of her saying she liked it just to please you. It's not like anyone sits with their partners and say "hey, let's read about BDSM and follow instructions", that's bull. You need tact, you'll know if she wants to do it again by her reactions to your initial advances towards turning a regular sexual session into a BDSM situation, as an example, if her heart gets racy and she blushes in excitement when you tie her hands as the first move to convey something else is going on now, but the transition can be conveyed in other ways. The point is being observant and act accordingly.

Best of luck.

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