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Bondage 201: What to Do After You Tie Up Your Partner

Ms. Elle X

You have learned the basics of bondage safety. You have communicated, negotiated, and received enthusiastic consent, which I define as "a completely mindful, willing, and un-coerced choice to say yes, and the ability to revoke that yes at any time without fear of repercussions."

Your lovely partner is consensually bound. They look at you longingly (if you have not otherwise restricted their sight), eagerly awaiting your next move. You check behind you to make sure the shears are within easy reach in case of an emergency...now what?

As a former ProDomme turned erotica author, I receive many questions from my community on how to construct a BDSM scene. It's one thing to have an interest in a particular kink. It's another thing entirely to know what to do with that desire. And it is often this lack of experience that leads to a lack of confidence which leads to unrealized pleasure. Fret not, dear riggers and rope bunnies, that is what we're here to do today: discover the perfect type of bondage scene for you!


Let me begin by stating a crucial point: BDSM is not a closet to come out of, but a buffet to choose from. This is important to note as we approach our discussion on bondage because we must have an accurate understanding of the nature of BDSM and all kinky activities therein. They must be organic and authentic to each individual and relationship dynamic.

Every APG is at a different level in their BDSM experience and education. And every APG also has individual and unique desires and reasons for those desires.


That is why I often encourage my clients and community to seek "the why behind the what." If we merely look at what someone likes or dislikes, what someone does or does not do, what someone says or does not say, we are missing a tremendous amount of communication and insight. The best Dominants and leaders, however, see past the "what" into the "why."


Why do they have that preference or desire? Why did they act in that manner? Why did they choose those words? There is always a "why" behind someone's "what." And that why matters, especially in BDSM.

As the rigger preparing for a new bondage scene, seek out your submissive's why.


  • Does your bottom player enjoy bondage because of the mental calm it provides?

  • Does your submissive desire bondage because they feel deeply connected to you in such a demonstration of trust?

  • Are they a masochist, prefering another kink such as orgasm denial or punishment, and bondage is a means of facilitation?

Often, these answers are found in the type of bondage the bottom player desires.

For instance, a submissive with a penchant for Shibari or Kinbaku may find themselves enraptured by the meditative aspects of bondage and the deep level of connection between partners.

A shy sub-type or newbie might be enthralled with the power of their Dominant partner and be held captive by only their spoken words and commands. A sapiosexual submissive could be aroused by the thrill of predicament bondage, having to consider their erotic decisions carefully. Even still, a bratty masochist could seek the rush of ownership and pleasure of a punishment spanking that requires bondage due to the intense levels of pain administered.


Every Dominant is different. Every submissive is different. Therefore, every scene should cater to that unique couple's desires and needs. One type of bondage scene will not work for all players. And we see this in each of the previous examples.


The why sheds a tremendous amount of light onto the what. As the Top in a bondage scene, if you are unclear on your bottom player's why your what will lose its erotic power. In gleaning this insight, however, a simple act of bondage becomes a gateway to fantasy.

What to do if you are unaware of the why behind your partner's what? In my experience coaching kinky couples in all stages of their BDSM journey, this is usually a sign that you and your partner did not communicate clearly or thoroughly enough.

So, start there. Go back to the beginning and have a conversation about not just what elements of bondage you each enjoy, but why you enjoy them.

I asked my Instagram community to do this very thing with one question, "What is your favorite thing about bondage?" Out of the many answers that I received, just seven consistent categories emerged. The top answer by far was, "completely letting go of control," closely followed by "the trust/intimacy/connection you must have in your partner/dynamic." The remaining answers were just as insightful into the seductive power of consensual bondage...

  • "The feeling of calm and peace."

  • "The feeling of complete control."

  • "The feeling of total safety/security."

  • "Creative/beautiful/artistic outlet."

  • "The anticipation/process."

These are resounding themes in bondage due to the often overwhelming feeling of powerlessness. When performed with a trusted partner with whom you feel safe, however, this powerlessness frequently turns orgasmic. Bondage truly teaches us the erotic passion that trust provides.


But what if the Rigger/Top/Dominant is the one who initiated the idea of bondage? This may sound trite, but allow me to explain when I say, "Go with what you know." Knowledge is power in any situation, especially in a BDSM scene that includes consensual bondage.

If you do not know your partner's turn-ons, erogenous zones, and other kinks, yes, you will feel quite stumped when they're lying on the bed blindfolded, bound, and excited, and you freeze in uncertainty.

If your bottom player is inexperienced and trusts you to guide them into discovering what kind of bondage they like, go with your strengths and your preferences, with extra check-ins and mindfulness on their comfort level. If your submissive is a self-proclaimed rope bunny and enjoys even the most extreme elements of bondage, do what sounds fun to you while still respecting hard limits.


Also, you and your partner can fantasize and brainstorm together before an arranged scene about what you would like to do to take any pressure off an individual party. You can also look to healthy erotica, erotic poetry, and even books and other educational materials for scene ideas to inspire your bondage play!

Regardless of the strategy, Riggers, Tops, and Dominants need to have two things ready: your plan and your tools. It is not necessary to script out your bondage scene verbatim, but I would highly advise you to plan for it.


When you approach your play with a general outline of what you want to happen and how you will go about accomplishing that, you will enter the space with a confidence that will often be palpable to your submissive and greatly aid in seduction.

In literature, we call this outline the exposition, climax, and resolution. Your bondage scene should also contain those elements as an erotic beginning, middle, and end.

  • Beginning Goals: Mood/energy set; anticipation builds.

  • Middle Goals: Play begins and intensifies.

  • End Goals: Scene conclusion; gradual drop. (Usually post-orgasm.)

  • Always aftercare!

Preparing your tools includes whatever form of bondage you are using (rope, bondage tape, saran wrap, cuffs, etc.) as well as any other toys or devices needed to complete your scene.

Bondage is one element of your scene, but it shouldn't be the only one. Even if you wish to stimulate the bottom player with nothing more than your own body, you will need to plan out the flow of stimulation to obtain your desired result.


A bonus to having your tools and toys organized before your scene is the mental impact it will have on your submissive as they consider the many possibilities of your deliciously dark plans.

Remember, you have done the work. You have researched. You have had the needed conversations about emotional triggers and physical abilities (bondage can really bring up the need to be aware of mental and emotional limits.)


You have discussed interests and limits, levels of flexibility, circulation issues or nerve pain that the submissive may have in relation to a health condition. You have received enthusiastic consent. You know how to keep your partner safe and to watch for signs of nerve or circulation damage.

Now, it's time to play in the beautiful passion of trust that is bondage.