Bound Together

One couple’s insights into BDSM.

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What’s the Difference between Rough Sex and BDSM?

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Bar graph showing percentage of college students who categorize certain activities as rough sex. Choking and hair pulling were most popular.

Spanking, hair pulling, slapping, spitting—these are just some of the activities that a lot of people consider to be part of rough sex. But these acts also fall squarely under the umbrella of BDSM. So is there a difference between rough sex and BDSM? If so, what is it? And if there isn’t, then why don’t more people simply call rough sex BDSM?

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Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) BDSM Resources

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This post was originally published on June 21, 2020 and was updated on August 15, 2021.

Black Lives Matter!
As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases made via some of the links below (at no additional cost to you). We may also earn a small commission (at no additional cost to you) if you make a purchase via the Kink Academy links below.

If you’re White, keep reading! Don’t make the mistake of thinking these BIPOC BDSM resources don’t pertain to you. They absolutely do. 

In the wake of the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and countless other Black people, we, like so many Americans, have joined the effort to prevent such atrocities from occurring in the future. But the changes that need to occur in this country go far beyond ending police brutality. Every community needs to take a step back and reflect on what it can do to not only make space for BIPOC but ensure they are welcome participants and leaders. And the BDSM community is no exception.

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