Fantasies and their limits
December 26, 2021
Safety in BDSM
April 29, 2022
Reading time: 8 minutes

Pushing limits is part of the common jargon in BDSM; it’s a quest to find more intense pleasures. One way is doing it progressively, with patience and constancy as done in a gym, using the power of fantasies, the power of worshiping and adoration, and even the hunger induced from chastity.

It’s a journey that takes patience and time. But impatience triggers when we realize it’s going to cost us more than we thought to reach a goal, and even more if we know there are alternatives. While the head says that the kinky mindset should be on enjoying the play and not having a goal to reach, this is not what the cock and ass say. And easily kinksters start thinking of shortcuts to speed up things.

Too many times in the first 5 minutes when starting to chat with someone it comes the ‘I want to have my limits pushed!’. And not much later the topic frequently changes to the openness of using drugs if the session will happen.

First things first – drugs exist in the BDSM scene, as much as exist in all the other scenes and environments, it’s not exclusive of gays or BDSM. It neither defines gays or BDSM. In BDSM scene, regardless of the sexual orientation, there are drugs. As much as there are drugs in the techno scene. As much as in other music scenes, in arts, in the business world, in households.

And because of this, my view is that each of us needs to learn to protect oneself by learning about them regardless of being kinky or not, and even if we don’t want to use them. Because even if we opt for not using them, not wanting to know about them will prevent us from having the resources to react to the day in a play/party/scene we are exposed to. So better to be ready to understand the effects and how to tackle the different situations that ourselves and/or our play partners might experience.

The kinky scene is diverse, each subgroup exhibits different degrees of prevalence of drugs. Some groups like the bondage community exhibit strict rules about alcohol and drug usage and you shouldn’t expect to find a rope suspension rigger doing the knots in a high. To put the other side, the fisting scene has a significant prevalence of drug usage, from the old trinity that some people call the old German way (alcohol, poppers and weed) to PnP/Chemsex parties fuelled with the new trinity made of crystal meth (tina), mephedrone and GHB/GBL, with many things in the middle in a wide spectrum of drugs and contexts.

Fisting can be done without any of them. True that in fisting it takes patience, time and lots of lube to advance. An asshole will not open to a fist in a few days, and part of the process is getting used to the discomfort, to stop at the pain, and practicing a lot and gradually until at some point it happens… which means that for some time, the fist is not going inside.

However, the reality is that starting to move into the scene where there are very appealing parties, it’s easy to experience frustration because so many are looking for play partners that are already able to take a fist, and might not be willing to take the time to start opening someone new. For some people (but not all), it’s all about seeing the fist going inside. Also, there are many chem-friendly parties happening, so it’s pretty easy to opt for the shortcut of going for drugs that numb the senses, remove the pain and extend the capacity of staying awake. But this shortcut, especially for newbies, is very risky.

In general, I recommend starting in any kinky scene as 1-to-1 plays, where there will be no social pressure but just one guy to connect with. While group parties might look appealing, I think it’s better not to enroll in them unless there is some experience of how things feel and a good understanding of the own limits without being drunk or high .

But if you decide to take the shortcut, reduce the risks by following a few rules.

Get to know first the feeling without highs

In the beginning, we need to learn to feel it. For example, to know when it’s painful because the fingers or hand are not going in the right direction. An experienced fister finds the way and knows how to reach that path, or how to lose the way to move a bit more, and of course when it’s not possible to continue in a direction.

As the ass needs to open and ‘get the shape, it’s important in the beginning to feel as much as possible and feel what is right and what it’s not. Being initiated in fisting with substances that numb and mask the pain is a very bad idea.

And even better, learn that from playing with yourself with toys before starting to find a play partner.

Explore in 1-to-1s before going to a fisting party

Be patient and look for a 1-to-1 play where you can take your time, get to know the person, build trust, ask questions… If you start exploring the path of drugs, it will be less risky being with just that one person.

I will repeat myself – be very aware of social pressure. In parties people are not usually there to teach with patience, and you might end up pushing the real limits. I would discourage anyone from going to a party if a M size hand doesn’t go inside well. This is usually a 7-7.5cm wide dildo.

If you are not 6.5 cm wide without using drugs, better not to risk going to a party because the temptation of getting numb through drugs is going to be there, and you should save your asshole from being destroyed and not realizing it until the next day. Love your ass, eventually it gives lots of happiness. Really, don’t break it in the beginning.

By playing with someone you trust and that is using something specific, you are indirectly getting something from a ‘pretty trusted source’. There is nothing safe when going for drugs, but if your partner is getting it for some time, it might be safer than just getting something in the street or in a club. And as regular consumers develop tolerance, it’s a good rule to just start with half of what your partner gets.

Drugs are drugs: be aware of the romanticized view

Drugs in the scene are not called drugs because this raises the negative connotation and the ‘drugs are bad’ mantra. It’s all about chems and even enhancers, with subcultures around it as a lifestyle and even brotherhoods. Similarly to when cigarettes were cool, some subcultures integrate chems as cool and non-risky, reducing the perception of what are the real risks involved.

Some people take drugs with no apparent impact on their life: we see them as successful, with a professional career, money and family. This is a powerful message that tells us that it is safe, and it’s disonant with the image of ‘drugs are bad’.

But while some people might be able to keep them in sort of control, much more eventually get to depend on them to get the pleasure.

Don’t underestimate the intrinsic additive nature of drugs with the association of them with pleasure: chemsex play tends to become a form of conditioning, because links the immediate pleasure of sex with a dependency. Not that different when I get excited by the sound of a buckle, and with the inherent dependency that generates drugs.

I know directly quite a lot of people with problems of addition (being aware and also those not being that aware), with a few with destroyed careers and lost husbands, two close deads and one funeral. This is part of the reality, we cannot ignore it.

Be aware of the existence of dark brotherhoods

I connect with kinky brotherhoods based on love and respect, however as in all groups in all social contexts, there are those that drink from unworthiness and darkness.

And the day that life crumbles because we are going through some difficulty, it can easily become a scape valve that sinks us further into the darkness. And that place of sense numbing and induced euphoria can easily attract abusers that will benefit from our need for comfort, and bring us a sense of belonging around a brotherhood, while increasing our dependency to the full package.

Most of the time the emptiness feeling after the parties is not just about the problems in the reality, but also the hangover after-fuelled-party effects, and easily it can increase the need for the escape, throwing us into a loop.

I’m not judging who follows the path of the darkness. Our body and mind are ours to fuck with in the way we want, just be aware this is potentially a journey of no return that will leave physical and emotional scars in the best case, and probably impact in your life quality at the long term if some anchors are not built.

Learn about drug effects

Get to know about the different drugs, and very important the effects, the downsides, the effects and risks when combined, and how they can impact on a scene.

It’s very helpful to know a few things. Someone in MDMA needs water regularly, that GBL/GHB can cause vomiting suddenly or that some drugs end in the urine. You don’t want to do ropes and hardcore bondage to someone that is not able to regulate temperature or that can vomit and chocke behind a gag. For the yellow-hanky lovers, drug recycling through drinking pee is a real thing, but besides not giving the same high because drugs have been already metabolized, it brings the real risk of not controlling concentrations and that mix of substances that can pile to whatever you already have there. Ketamine k-holes are more common than you think, and you might have to monitor someone for 1 hour until it gets out of it. G blackouts are the most dangerous ones, and it can be stressing to take the decision between waiting 4 hours for the guy to come back or call emergency services.

And this type of knowledge is necessary even if we are not taking them. People might lie if they want to play with us. Knowing the effects helps identify physical cues on our play partners and anticipate problems.

So a few resources worth exploring to start getting some valuable knowledge:

  • FridayMonday: a guide of common drugs, including a good guide of effects when mixing other drugs
  • Sex Health Wellbeing / Chemsex: guide about the most common drugs in chemsex, with details about effects into sex, downsides and potential long term effects, and a section about mixing drugs
  • Drugs.ie / Harm reduction guides: there are a series of guides to reduce undesired effects for most common ones
  • Mind Surf (Spanish): this was my place to go for many years. It’s a non-judgemental resource about psychoactives, with information about dosing, effects, what to do in case of emergency,… It has lots of literature and a more mystical approach, which might be interesting for a relaxed reading

As a last note, I advise strongly against tina, and not just as a consumer but as playing with regular tina users. I’ve witnessed the effects of medium term usage of tina (1 year) in a few play partners, affecting their personality: besides episodes of paranoia (e.g. feeling observed and followed) and aggressive behavior (e.g. for not getting the scene in the expected way) that were quite downers, I find more worryingly they were lacking empathy, up to the point that there could be a situation of using the agreed safer words and there wasn’t the expected response. The real feeling of being raped and in real danger, with no stop from the other side, is not fun. Meth is a very big thing, be very mindful of it.

Friends are best anchors

Very few times I have felt in danger, fortunately can be counted with the fingers of one hand. But it hasn’t been zero. And it gave me peace in my mind to know that someone knew exactly where I was. I always share the address where I go, or even just the location of Google Maps. When I meet a play partner, I tell him to send a message to someone with his location and even information about who I am: a phone number, Recon profile… It gives me relief to have that friend that can call the police to point them in the right direction if there hasn’t been a response for some time.

Some people also plan the check-in calls at certain times. Always bring a phone charger, and keep the phone always charged and close to the play area.

And those friends might turn out to be important anchors in your kinky life. Regardless of the style of play and even if we are diving deep into the darkness, it’s good to keep a pair of open-minded good friends, even if they are vanilla, just in case the strong currents take you far away from shore.

They are the ones that can let us know that things are not going right. They are the ones that will see if our life is falling apart or if our personality or behaviors are changing. It’s good that we let them clearly know that their perspective matters to us and that if they ever see worrying changes, that we want them to be direct to us.

But we must be warned that if we are in a deep well, we might not be in a position to listen to them anymore. If such case they might put distance, which can be the ultimate signal that something is going really wrong with us. We need to be able to realize if this is the case and find help, as there is nothing more dangerous than losing all the anchors that allow us to return to the safety of the shore.

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