Sadomasochistic lesbian couple having bdsm play in the bed

A guide to submissive sex: 5 ways you can explore your submissive side

BDSM, while an exciting topic, is also pretty misunderstood. The latest studies show that almost half of the general population has participated in BDSM. Still, not everyone fully grasps the concept, even when trying it out themselves.

But when experimenting with new kinks and sex acts, it’s essential to know the ins and outs of it to ensure the safety and comfort of both parties involved. So, let’s take a close look at submissive sex, or the “S” in BDSM.

We’ll explain what submissive sex is, how to explore it safely, and a couple of other things you can do if you’re trying out submissive sex for the first time. If you’re looking to explore new kinks and are considering submission, then this is the guide for you.

Let’s get into it.

Sexual submission: What does it mean?

Sexual submission or submissive sex refers to sexual intercourse between consenting adults where each party plays a different role. One person plays the “sub” or submissive partner, while the other plays the “dom” or dominant partner.

While the media has portrayed sexual submission as one party having “no control” and no boundaries in play, it’s actually the opposite. Submissive sex relies on consent between both people, and it only works if each person receives sexual pleasure when playing their role.

Sub vs bottom

Many people think subs are the same thing as “bottoms,” which is far from true. The submissive person in sexual intercourse plays a role, while a bottom simply refers to someone who is in the bottom position during sex.

People who identify as bottoms usually only describe their sexual preference. However, a person can be a bottom but not want to play a submissive role during sex.

Submission in the context of BDSM refers to handing the power over to someone else with consent and with clear boundaries in place.

People who play the sub in sexual submission don’t necessarily have to be penetrated or stay on top. Many subs spend most of their time on top, doing their best to please the bottom, who may also play the dominant role.

It looks different to everyone

At the end of the day, submissive sex is all about a power dynamic. One person plays the role of someone who has power over the sub. However, sexual submission isn’t a strict category, and every couple and individual has their own interpretation of it.

While the sub “hands over the control” to the dom, it’s always with a set of boundaries and rules. Submissive sex is always between two consensual individuals who have a clear understanding of safe words, what they can’t do, and what works for the other person.

So, if you’re thinking of exploring submissive sex in the bedroom, make sure to have clear conversations with your partner about it. On top of that, the communication shouldn’t end after your first try, as it may take a couple of tries before you figure out what works for you in the bedroom and how you can explore submissive sex in a way that pleases both parties.


cropped shot of couple in erotic game with black leather handcuffs


5 ways to explore submissive sex

While submissive sex can be fun and add a lot of spice to the bedroom, it can be hard to get into it the first couple of times. Before anything, it’s always important to have clear conversations with your partner on submission, including what they are and aren’t comfortable with.

From there, you can start exploring your options.

Below, we’ll look at the five ways to start exploring submissive sex with your partner. These are far from the only ways to try out submission for the first time, but it can be a great launching point for you to find out what works for both of you.

1. Punishment and permissions

This is one of the most prominent power dynamics in play during submissive sexual intercourse. If you’re doing sessions where you play with punishment and permissions, the sub needs to ask permission before doing something. For example, before having an orgasm or performing oral, the sub has to request the dom for permission.

The dom can deny or grant permission as they seem fit. And if the sub acts outside of the dom’s rules, such as orgasming without getting permission from the dom, they receive a sort of punishment. 

Examples of punishments during submissive sex are spanking, bondage, edging, or even chastity.

If you’re looking to explore punishments and permissions during a dom/sub-session, then you can have a conversation beforehand where the dom sets a bunch of sexy rules that the sub needs to follow. This can include what sexual positions are allowed, whether they can orgasm without permission, or even what they have to wear during sex.

2. Impact play

Impact play refers to striking your partner with your hands or with a toy during sexual intercourse. The most common example of this is a spank, which is something that a lot of people do even if they don’t practice submissive sex. 

You can use many different things for impact play as long as both parties are comfortable. Doms can use their hands to spank the subs, but they can also use whips, paddles, and other kinky sex toys.

This is usually done as foreplay as an erotic spanking can increase blood flow to the groin area, which makes them even more aroused. This also causes the brain to release endorphins and dopamine, making sex more enjoyable.

3. Roleplaying and dirty talk

In submissive sex, both parties are already playing roles. One plays the dom, and one plays the sub. However, you can take this a step further by playing roles that portray a definite power dynamic.

It can be hard to do this at first, which is why many couples would rather stick to the dom and sub-roles. This is why most experts recommend starting roleplay with very simple roles with basic power dynamics.

Some examples of roles couples can try out when experimenting with submission include boss/employee, teacher/student, or doctor/patient. However, just like with anything related to BDSM, it’s always crucial to communicate with your partner to find what you are comfortable with.

4. Bondage

While bondage is a completely different aspect of BDSM, it can usually go hand in hand with submissive sex. When experimenting with bondage, the dom can find different ways to restrain the sub during sex. Some of the things you can use include straps, belts, ropes, and more. 

The restraints are in place to limit the sub’s sense of freedom, which can heighten the excitement and arousal during sexual intercourse.

5. Wearing different outfits

Another way to experiment with different roles is to wear sexy and unique outfits during intercourse. A lot of the time, doms and subs try to incorporate a range of outfits and costumes while experimenting with submissive sex.

For example, many doms enjoy wearing leather outfits as it helps them feel confident and powerful. On the flip side, subs may wear leashes, collars, and other things that can limit their freedom to enhance the thrill and excitement during sex.

Other outfits may also be used to enforce the person’s roles. For example, the dom could be wearing a teacher’s outfit while the sub could wear a student’s outfit to create a really intense power dynamic that could make sexual intercourse way more exciting.

Costumes can be an exciting part of sexual submission as it allows them to feel like a completely different person. This makes them more comfortable in their role and could be a great way to go all-in when trying out submission in the bedroom.


dominant man with a Flogger whip and submissive girl in leather handcuffs for BDSM sex


Constant communication is key in submissive sex

There’s no doubting that sexual submission can be fun. However, it’s only fun and enjoyable when both parties are on the same page and when all the boundaries, safe words, and other precautions are in place. On top of that, BDSM involves having constant and healthy conversations about your sex life and fantasies with your partner, as preferences can change over time.

For example, there may be some things that you may not want to try out now that will interest you later. Or on the flip side, things you are comfortable with now might not be comfortable later on. This is why constant communication is key for any couple looking to explore submissive sex and other aspects of BDSM.

Explore the fantasy together

Submissive sex involves each person playing a dominant or submissive role. Sometimes, the parties can have sub or dom qualities, and others, they could be going all the way in their roles. Submission looks different for everyone, which is why it’s important to explore the fantasy together to find a middle ground that pleases both you and your partner.

But regardless of how you plan to spice things up in the bedroom, always remember that you need to communicate with your partner to discover the things that will and won’t work for the two of you.

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