The participants of this study emphasized that to carry out these practices, a series of steps must be followed. In the first place, it is essential that both people are healthy, both mentally and physically, which implies, among some things, having emotional stability, not being upset, not being depressed, etc. Second, the practice must be carried out progressively, that is, the limits and pain thresholds must be tested gradually and finally, there must be an agreement that is intrinsically related to the issue of consensus, where both participants establish their tastes and limits.

We find that mental health is considered essential at the time of practice, what they call “sessions”, as it is directly related to the possibility of establishing and maintaining limits, as expressed by Elisa. If you are not well psychologically, then How do you define where your limits are healthily? If you, uh, if your reasoning and your parameters are out of date. This golden rule could explain why BDSM practitioners in Wismeijer’s study turned out to be more mentally balanced people and were positioned as more confident and serene than non-practitioners.10. From the point of view of the participants, this demystifies the belief that the people involved act in a hasty and careless way or that they have emotional problems and psychological disorders.

Similarly, submissives and masochists, far from the common belief, must have high self-esteem because they must have a higher level of resistance and mental strength to perform this type of practice if I go to a session, and use the act of humiliation to that person. How are you going to take it? It is going to destroy, it is going to crumble. And I’m going to have a damaged person on my hands. And it cannot. On the contrary, the submissive has to have a very high self-esteem to be submissive (Katerina).

Likewise, physical health is also important in practice. An inherent condition to this is the absence of consumption of drugs or other substances that alter the judgment of reality and perception, as Pascal suggests, you cannot session someone while drunk, why? Because you lose perception, you will not realize what you are causing this refers to the fundamental principle of BDSM, which speaks of healthy, safe and consensual practices. For these people, doing the practice with altered judgment means that they are putting themselves or the other person in danger, due to the high risk that these practices entail, so it makes sense then that the practitioners take a lot of security measures. more elaborate than in a conventional sexual practice.

Another element to consider in the physical field is to always take into account the state of the person, that is, what is satisfactory one day is not always so. Xavier expresses that it also depends on the day, it may be that I tell you, at least … For the most part, I have always had submissives who are women, you know, your body undergoes many processes in a month. There are certain days where you can hold out longer, certain days when you hold out less, that is, that depends a lot on many factors.

As expressed by the participants, each one has a particular physiological and psychological functioning, so practice, experience and the person define the way in which the session is held. In this way, another condition to practice BDSM is to do it in a progressive and gradual way, involving various processes in the way in which the master and the submissive know each other, sharing about their preferences and their limits to verify the compatibility of both before establish a contract and conduct a session. This process implies a kind of training through successive approximations, without directly reaching the expected final behavior.

Said training could involve questionnaires about interests and previous experiences that allow an initial approach to the submissive and can even be used as methods of discarding people with pathological characteristics: I first talk to them, for example, by chat, where they can find me, I send this questionnaire that is a questionnaire of many questions where I make psychological discards seeing how much level they may have that practices have had and if it is some crazy road (Katerina).

Another step in progressive training can be dressage. Dressage is a regulation time […] the dominant and the submissive have a real meeting that is to discuss the form. If that moment passes, one sends him at least to do tests in his house photos and that to see if he does them and if everything is real, because what you are doing is like small tests until you reach a real test that is the moment of the first session. Dressage is understood as a period of time of testing and discussion of the submissive and dominant’s tastes and limits, until reaching a point of consensus or agreement on them, which means that the dominant has accepted the submissive, an act that later it will be formalized in public, to later carry out the contract.

These cares that are taken before formalizing a submissive-dominant relationship could be related, among other factors, to some of the comments of the participants who agree that these practices can impact many people, and precisely so as not to impact the new practitioner they must be practiced “little by little”. Pascal refers to this a true dominant who is going to teach someone or has a submissive, for him, he must go progressively. I can’t grab you the first day, “oh okay, let’s go to session” I grab her and grab the whip, no.

It seems that for many BDSM practices are essentially structured. At the beginning of a relationship of domination and submission, some guidelines must be previously established and they must be carried out progressively, from the most basic and “vanilla” (a term that for the participants is equivalent to conventional) to the most complex, in the case of a process in which multiple factors are taken into account. In many cases, the pain threshold is worked, which denotes the limit of the submissive-masochist, in order to progressively increase it, with respect to the threshold that it had at the beginning of the domination-submission relationship, until a new limit is found.

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