What Every Sub Needs to Know Before Play

You Deserve to Be Heard and Cared For...

You know where you’re meeting your play partner; you know what you’re supposed to wear or bring. When you’re prepping for a scene, make these mental notes, too!

You are not greedy. Or maybe you are. Maybe that’s one of the things you like to hear, that you’re a greedy little slut. But you are not any more greedy than the dom/me you are playing with. They want this just as badly as you do. You want to feel that pain or shame or dark little pit of exciting fear or explosion of pleasure? They want to give that to you, and watch your face, feel your body, when you respond. When you negotiate for this scene or relationship or dynamic, don’t hold back. Ask for what you want, all of it. If your dom/me steps up to it, believe it: they want it too.

You are not powerless. Even if you are pretending to be. You have the right to ask for what you want, before and during and after. You have the right to say yes to things, to say “fuck yes,” to say, “please don’t ever stop.” Even more importantly, though, you have the right to say “no.” Pick your safe word, and make sure your dom/me(s) know it. If you play in public, choose your play spaces wisely, and make sure they have good monitoring policies. You can even ask your partner for references, if you want. That is not unheard-of or weird. Power in a scene is not just whippy, stingy bits stored up at the end of that flogger.

You are not “weird.” I mean, you might be, but not automatically because of the things you want or the way you play. You almost certainly aren’t the only person who has ever wanted that thing that makes you feel like a bad person, whether that’s age play or rape play or needles in delicate bits or terrible, insulting names. The corollary here, of course, is that your dom/me is not weird either, for wanting to do those things to/for/with you. Now, I firmly believe that unpacking our kinks and fetishes now and then is good for the psyche and the social contract, and helps us toward a better understanding of our sexual selves, which in turn enables us to ask for what we want (see #1, above). But in general, kinks that we keep between consenting partners are fine.

You are worth care. Whether it’s something that you do for yourself, or that your partner does for you, you are worth care and attention before, during, and after play. What that care looks like depends on what you’re into. Maybe it’s acquiring the highest quality toys that you can afford, or expressing concerns and needs about toys, when your partner is shopping for you. Maybe care for you means furniture or play spaces that take your physical needs into consideration; just because you are into one kind of pain or discomfort doesn’t mean you have to accept any other kind! Certainly care should include anything you need for aftercare: cuddles, warm blankets, hot drinks or protein snacks, verbal soothing. These things aren’t fussy or “high-maintenance”; they are necessary for you to keep being the best sub you can be!

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Cameryn Moore
Cameryn Moore is an award-winning playwright/performer, sex activist and educator, sidewalk pornographer, and a long-time phone sex operator. Her work in theatre, literature, and activism/advocacy is both a challenge and invitation to adventurous audiences everywhere. She is the writer and performer of five solo shows: Phone Whore, slut (r)evolution, for | play, The Pretty One (and other things that need to be said), and nerdfucker. To date, she has toured these shows to over 50 cities around the world. She is the creator and frequent host of Smut Slam, a storytelling open mic featuring real-life, first-person sex stories, and BEDx, a bar education night for sex geeks. When not performing, Cameryn sets up her world-famous traveling Smut Stand, providing bespoke typewritten erotica on the spot to happy drunks and discerning passersby. Visit Cameryn Moore to learn more.