By Bea Amor at Yahoo Voices

Etiquette and Rules at a BDSM Play Party. The Top 10
You are going to your first play party and you are terrified, excited and a little apprehensive. It is a big decision and you don’t know what to expect. The people seem friendly and you don’t think you should worry but still the nagging doubts persist. Are you insane for wanting to go to this party? Are you going to be hurt and are all these people freaks that you won’t be able to have a decent conversation with? At least they seem to be open to your fears and you have received many supportive phone calls from most of the people attending the party. You have arranged for a friend to take you there and then to come and pick you up later, you never know whether you would be able to drive yourself…

Before you go, sit down, relax with some soda or a water and read the following rules. Be sure to follow them and you should be fine. First off you need to understand the concept of a play party. A play party is where a few couples and single players get together to play at someone’s private dungeon or at a club. Oh no, the word dungeon just gave you a panic attack – not to worry, it does sometimes look like a medieval chamber of torture, but back then the equipment was meant to hurt and get information from unwilling prisoners. In this dungeon you will find that no one plays with, or is placed near any piece of equipment without their consent.

What could you find in a dungeon? A cage or two, some racks, a St Andrews Cross or two, spanking benches, swings, sometimes stocks etc. Only rarely will you find such a well equipped dungeon at someone’s home, unless they make their own equipment. Most dominants bring their own “toys”, meaning that they provide their own rope, restraints, sensual toys, floggers, canes, whips etc. Most dominants keep their toys immaculately clean and some would even expect the submissive they will be playing with to bring their own. If you don’t have any, don’t despair, I will be sharing some secrets on how to fill a toy bag with what we call pervertibles in a next article.

Now we have covered what you could find, but there is also the portion of the party that does not take place in the dungeon. There is always quite some time devoted to some social interaction, where you will find, to some people’s surprise a really intelligent group of people with diverse views on most anything. Believe it or not, there are even some Christian BDSM groups. I have found the average intelligence of these people to be high above average. No alcohol or drugs are allowed at play parties; in clubs or at private homes as these intoxicants are dangerous when one intends to play. To play safely one needs to be aware and fully present if one is the dominant. The submissive will sometimes float away into what we call subspace. Subspace is good though, you will enjoy it.

Now about those rules:

1. Never play if you have not eaten at least a bit.

2. Do not interrupt another’s scene – it is rude and offensive. If you think that the dominant is going too far and hurting his bottom, report it to a dungeon master (from now on called a DM) and they will see to the situation. Remember that sometimes people play in such a way that you might think that something is wrong, but it just might be their style. As an example, I saw a couple playing once – the woman was caning the man and he started bleeding after cursing at her and goading her to go harder. I thought she was being irresponsible by breaking skin, but she calmly continued and he continued screaming. I asked a DM about it and he laughed, telling me that this was how they always played and that I should watch them after the scene. I did and the love that went into that aftercare, was simply inspirational.

3. Use your safe word when you are being played with and you feel uncomfortable, but note that most parties or clubs have a general safe word too and if you have to use this safe word, the dominant will be asked to leave and would likely not return again.

4. Nudity is mostly allowed, but penetrative sex is not allowed at most parties. There are some private parties where you would find it, but for many people BDSM is not equated with sex. Respect others if you find that you need penetration to end a scene, do so at home with that specific dominant.

5. Do pay attention to the way people prefer to be addressed. Some dominants like being called Sir or Ma’am and it would only be common courtesy if you followed the leader in this respect.

6. If you are the dominant, remember that the equipment is most likely limited and that you should limit your scenes in order to give most people an opportunity to play.

7. If you are new and have never done this, you do not have to play. Watch the scenes and ask as many questions as you need to. People are always eager to answer them. This is a good way of seeing what activities you might be interested in and which of the local dominants are respected and play nice.

8. Most parties have a dress code. Please ask your host before the event and stick to the code.

9. Now, for possibly one of the most important rules, never approach another submissive that is obviously there with another dominant to ask to play with them and do not touch them at all. You have to ask the dominant’s permission to play with his “property” or “pet”, even if they are not in a long term relationship.

10. Enjoy yourself!

By Bea Amor at Yahoo Voices