The bedroom is not unlike a therapist’s office. In the proper setting (perhaps even lying on a couch) you can explore how twisted you are with someone you trust. Some sexual attractions are simply programmed into brains to get humans to hump and hopefully make babies, such as men’s attraction to the curvature of a woman’s hips. When a chick is on top grinding her clit on a dude he’s likely not thinking of kids. However latent or not, the truth is breasts and hips grow during puberty due to an influx of estrogen, so women can bare children, signs of fertility generally considered attractive. Other more niche turn ons, such as being slapped across the face during sex, are not so simply explained.
Perhaps not entirely, but I think such kinks come from somewhere psychologically. Picture the Wall Street trader who uses his deep pockets to pay high end dominatrixes to whip him into submission as sort of a mental balancing act. There are both sides to the S&M world, some get off experiencing the reverse of the persona they present in public, such as the dominatrix who likes to be bound up at home by her boyfriend and play the sub, or the power-hungry Wall Street trader mentioned above who gets off on being pissed on and humiliated in a domme’s dungeon as a form of therapy. Then there are those with almost a Patrick Bateman-esque persona, who while hopefully not actual sociopathic serial killers, enjoy the dominant role in the bedroom as much as they do in the outwardly. I also often wonder how much personal past experience or even trauma has to do with such turn ons. Does the fact that I’ve experienced sexual abuse play a role in my enjoyment of being dominated? If it does, does it matter? I’m not a psychologist, but I firmly believe that as long as any kink is being acted out in a safe environment, a healthy relationship, it is a good thing. As I’ve previously stated in many articles, we can’t suffocate our desires. Especially if they have a dark side, such as enjoying being slapped during sex, if we try and submerge them, like trying to hold a beach ball underwater, they risk slipping out of your grasp and popping up somewhere unexpected.
You’ve embraced that you think it’s hot for your boyfriend or trusted partner to give you a slap on the face while reminding you what a bad girl you are during rough sex. How to proceed without freaking them out?
As one female reader who enjoys being slapped at times emailed me, “Why is being slapped across the face so much more of a taboo than spanking?” She makes a fair point. While still likely inappropriate, one could get away with drunkenly giving a friendly slap on the ass in public at a party. I imagine the party guests’ and receiver of the slap’s reaction would be rather different if you went over to your crush, held their neck, and slapped them across the face while calling them a dirty slut in an effort to casually flirt.
The reasons such a gesture would be so inappropriate is because it breaks rule number one: Don’t hit girls. During sex, from personal experience and speaking with readers, the agreement seems to be that even if slapping, or other typically derogatory behavior seen in porn such as spitting on, name calling, etc., are activities that turn on the dominant partner, to feel comfortable engaging in them the receiver of the slaps must bring it up. Subs must reach into their dominant side and express their fantasies, and grasp onto the knowledge that you are not in fact, dirty or a slut, for wanting to sometimes be slapped and called one. Some people have a thing for medical fetishism, some guys just want to bang their babysitters. Some people like to be peed on. Some girls like to be slapped. We’re all freaks. As long as you’re not hurting anyone (where the line does start to blur with slapping) nothing is wrong. As one reader eloquently wrote me explaining slapping, “I think if both people are really into it is absolutely great. A really great way to get to a deeper loss of control.”
After you’ve had an honest and open conversation about it, time to get it on. Talk about how far you want to go, how hard you want to be hit, if you are okay with name calling, choking, etc. The safest slap for beginners is a gentle one with an open palm, focusing on the fleshy cheek, rather than any area with bone close to the surface as to avoid visible bruises. Create a safe word. It’s fun to joke about such things, but safe words are important. “Everything Bagel.” “Dolphin.” “Jerry Seinfeld.” Whatever you like!
Some people are aroused by sex bruises, perhaps as simply a reminder of the sex, or perhaps some animalistic way of marking territory. Having a slight bruise from consensual S&M activities is like the kinky adult version of getting hickies from making out in high school. No matter how careful you are with slapping, there is always a risk of leaving a slight mark. Invest in some good cover-up makeup, and scarves, and a turtleneck if you’re trying choking as well. Next time you see a reserved woman on the subway in a beige turtleneck, don’t jump to the conclusion that she’s a prude. Maybe her partner and she had some really awesome sex last night that lead to him grabbing her by the neck and pinning her down as she came, and he accidentally left a small reminder of that. Judge not.
Author’s note: Some men enjoy being dominated in such ways as well as women, as do those who don’t identify with any gender and in non-heterosexual relationships. I’m writing this from the primary perspective of women being slapped by men as it is my first-person experience, and the source of most of the research behind the article, but I apologize if my use of generalizations or gender pronouns has turned away anyone.