Thinking Kink: Gay S&M in Pop Music, Then and Now

Back in 1983, Frankie said "Relax" and a media unsettled by gay S&M did the exact opposite. A generation later, we pride ourselves on being a little cooler with queerness and BDSM, but I suspect there are still some double standards when it comes to gay men getting kinky.... Read more »

Thinking Kink: The Politics of BDSM Fashion

Considering how restrictive so much kinky clothing is, when does sexy cross the line into sexist? Is shoe-horning oneself into corsets, latex or agonizingly high heels just part of fetishism, or is it just another way in which the female body is molded and manipulated? Today, I'm peeling back the... Read more »

Thinking Kink: A Visit to the Sex Toy Store

Today, I'm reflecting on some of my trips to sex stores and consider the cost of kink, as well as how many stores pass the female-friendly test. Is having a decent kink toybox all about the Benjamins? And why do some sex stores still feel reserved for the dirty raincoat brigade? Read more »

Thinking Kink: Some Like it Rough

"Baby, when it's love, if it's not rough it isn't fun", growls Lady Gaga in her hit "Poker Face." Today, I'm considering how rough sex is portrayed in the media, and why a taste for the rough stuff troubling to some but damn sexy to others... Read more »

Thinking Kink: Moving Beyond Abuse with BDSM

Last post, I looked at how BDSM can be used to work through abuse. But what of those who want to use BDSM to move on from, not replay, traumatic pasts? Today, I'm thinking about the difficulty of shedding the "victim" label when an abuse survivor chooses to be kinky... Read more »

Thinking Kink: Is BDSM Therapy "A Dangerous Method"?

One of the most resented stereotypes about BDSM is that the only person who would willingly consent to it must be "a damaged victim choosing submission as a way of healing from or processing past trauma." But what exactly is the objection to people who practice BDSM as therapy? I had a look at the... Read more »

Thinking Kink: Safewords

In light of the Daniel Tosh firestorm this week, I probably don't need to make the point that joking about sexual abuse is harmful, not funny. However, in the context of kink, a subculture that's... Read more »

Thinking Kink: Is Vanilla Sex Boring? Who Gets to Decide?

As kink continues to infiltrate the mainstream media so does its accompanying lingo, and one of the terms that's bugging non-kinksters is "vanilla." As folks who've fought against negative labels themselves, should BDSM practitioners quit bandying around this term? Or do we just need to redefine "... Read more »

Thinking Kink: Secretary and the Female Submissive

A decade before 50 Shades, closet kinksters were finding a way to come out via Steven Shainberg's exercise in office S&M, Secretary. While this tense and sexy movie may have avoided coming off like a bad porn script, did Secretary do much to challenge the stereotype... Read more »

Thinking Kink: No, Female Submission Doesn't Mean Oppression

This is the second part of a two-part series on female submission and oppression. Read the first post here. The woman who admits to enjoying sexual submission often finds herself stuck... Read more »

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