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Punishment in BDSM

Definition of BDSM punishment

The punishment is a coercive measure in BDSM, expressed in the purposeful infliction by the Dominant partner of mental and/or physical suffering (pain, bondage, humiliation, inconvenience, isolation, deprivation) on the submissive partner as a response to a certain unwanted, disrespectful or bad behavior, appearing to be a violation of the rules.

 

Purpose of the punishment

The purpose of imposing punishment is to force the submissive partner to realize the inadmissible nature of his offence, to feel shame and remorse for what he has done and, under fear of repeating the unpleasant, painful or humiliating experience, to try to avoid committing new offence.

 

Punishment vs Discipline

When coercive influence is related to correcting mistakes during the ongoing performance of a given task or suppressing an immediate reaction of a submissive partner during training, the punishment is usually defined as discipline.

 

Punishment in BDSM practice

The punishment is a basic element in BDSM. In the context of D/s and M/s relationships, the right to determine wrongdoing and impose punishment is an element of the Dominant's power over his submissive partner. This right is not absolute, but like other activities in BDSM, is limited by what is agreed between the parties. In sadomasochistic and session D/s relationships, the term "punishment" is usually used to arouse the partner, not so much to describe the actions being performed.

 

The punishment in Dominance and submission

The punishments are directly related to the establishment of rules in D/s and M/s relationships as an inevitable consequence of their violation by the submissive partner. By entering into this type of relationship, the submissive agrees (and in some cases insists) that he will be punished for his offences within the agreed limits. The punishments can include the whole arsenal of BDSM practices - from humiliations, through bondage and use of sensory deprivations to various types of corporal punishments such as caning, spanking or flogging. The punishments do not have to be physical, and in some cases inflicting pain in the form of punishment would be not only inadvisable but also ineffective (e.g. for punishing submissive masochists).

 

Forms of BDSM punishments

By their form, the punishments in BDSM are "positive" and "negative". Positive punishment would be present when something is done to the submissive partner, e.g. pain, humiliation, physical discomfort. Negative punishment would be present when the submissive partner is deprived of something to which in a normal situation he would be entitled, e.g. deprivation of TV or access to a computer, but also of the right to sleep or orgasm.

The use of definitions such as "positive" and "negative" in relation to the punishment very often causes confusion in BDSM circles and especially among more inexperienced Dominants when they try to reason from the position of the submissive partner. In fact, to determine a given punishment as "positive" or "negative" it is its content that matters, not the attitude (approval or disapproval) of the submissive towards what is inflicted on him (usually unpleasant and/or unwanted).

 

Types of punishments in BDSM

Depending on the type of impact, the punishments can be divided into numerous subtypes without such a classification being comprehensive:

1) corporal punishments, related to the purposeful infliction of severe physical pain to the submissive partner through classic means of punishment such as rattan canes, spanking paddles, whips, etc.;

2) humiliation punishments, aimed at impact by causing mental discomfort and embarrassment, e.g. forced nudity, cleaning the floor with a toothbrush, eating/drinking water from a bowl on the floor, urinating while sitting (for a man), mashing food before eating, etc.;

3) discomfort punishments are placed in between corporal and humiliation punishments and are related to causing physical discomfort leading to mental discomfort, e.g. mouth soaping/ washing mouth out with soap, gagging, smearing the anus with toothpaste or hot pepper to cause burning and itching, applying cleansing enemas every hour, catheterization, taping a grain of rice to the feet, which when walking, which dig into the flesh and cause irritation and pain, etc.;

4) restraint/bondage punishments related to placing in light or heavier bondage for extended periods, e.g. wearing a posture collar, restricting hand movements with bondage cuffs, wearing a leather straightjacket, forced wearing of bondage hoods, placing in stress positions, locking in a cage, etc.;

5) reflective punishments aimed at making sense of the offense such as sending for a long time in the corner (corner time), send to bed early, repeatedly writing on a sheet (eg 100 times) how did he screw-up along with a promise that it will not be repeated etc.;

6) productive (working) punishments related to performing tedious and monotonous work, e.g. in the household such as washing, ironing, cleaning, etc. Their presence among the types of punishments is considered debatable. Many Dominants are against turning housework or other useful work into punishments.

7) pointless punishments - a variety of productive (working) punishments related to the performance of repetitive, monotonous and essentially meaningless tasks such as picking up intentionally spilled rice and/or peas from the floor, cleaning the toilet every 30 minutes, no matter whether it was used, filling in all words with an even number of letters on the front page of a newspaper, etc.

8) deprivation punishments - from trivial ones such as deprivation of the right to use a telephone or computer to deprivation of food, water, sleep, sexual stimulation or orgasm;

9) situation punishments - one of the most common and at the same time the most difficult to generalize - these are the punishments directly related to the nature of the offense, e.g. making the submissive partner clean the entire floor of the house after being careless and spilling the sugar jar in the kitchen, forcing him to tongue clean the Dominant partner's ass after using to the bathroom because he forgot to change the used toilet paper roll and others.

 

Imposing the punishment

The imposition of punishment in BDSM can be seen as a complete process involving several interrelated elements:

1) establishing the misdemeanor committed by the submissive and its qualification by the Dominant partner as an unequivocal violation of the rules;

2) determination of the punishment by type and amount, as well as the manner in which it will be carried out - in full, in parts, suspended under conditions, etc.;

3) execution of the punishment - here the Dominant partner should ensure that the punishment will be carried out in the way he has determined.

As an additional element in the theory, the granting of forgiveness is indicated.

In each of these stages, the active party is the Dominant partner - he ascertains the violation, he determines the type and amount of the punishment, and he is personally responsible for its suffering by the submissive, even when the execution is entrusted to a third party. Finally, when the punishment has been meted out and the submissive has served his due, it is again the Dominant partner who should grant him forgiveness. In the case of particularly severe and mentally taxing punishments, granting forgiveness can be seen as a form of Aftercare for the submissive.

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