Seattle 2025

{ BDSM 101}

Believe those who are seeking the truth. Doubt those who find it. ~Andre Gide


This is my personal website. I don't promise to always keep it up to date. I don't promise to always be politically correct. The purpose is to give those that wander through something to think about, to ponder. I hope you enjoy your taste of my little world here in the World Wide Web.


This website was made on planet Earth by an Earthling

made on planet earth


"You can read a hundred books and cruise a thousand websites and chatrooms, but it will not equal one hour of real-time BDSM experience." -- Sensuous Sadie

BDSM 101

My name is Kris Harmison. I am the Madame of the Moulin Rouge. I am a sexual explorer and creator of fantasies, desiring to learn about what others enjoy.

First, I want to say that any discussion like this is just that, a discussion.  I will talk for a while and then open it up to you to speak about your own, perhaps alternative, views and thoughts.  The Moulin Rouge is a place that values the freedom of constructive speech, and we value your thoughts and your opinions, especially when they are presented in a thoughtful and intelligent manner. We do not allow harassment or ridicule, so feel free to express yourself as you wish.

The Moulin Rouge promotes caring, safe, sane, adult consensual sexual role-play.  One of the advantages of an online environment it that you can role-play and not get physically hurt.  Of course, that is just a small part of it, because domination and submission are very much mental experiences, and the physical part of the relationship may or may not be present, even in RL.

First, BDSM is not a vanilla lifestyle, the simplest things, in the wrong hands, can be life and sanity threatening. Even in a virtual world like Second Life (SL) where we are living pixels, the depth and breadth of a slave/sub/pet’s devotion and love for his or her Dominant can hurt that person so deeply and ruin them emotionally. The lifestyle must be taken very seriously and you must own and understand the responsibility you have for your partner’s safety. You can't just jump into becoming a Dominant and hope to wing it.  There are far too many risks.

I know there is a lot of information and confusion surrounding the Kinky lifestyle.  Everybody has their own opinions.  Some people agree on certain subjects others don't.  It is hard to tell what's what.

This lifestyle is far more intimate and intimidating then most people ever realize. It is complex and there is much to learn and much to be gained by that learning. In any relationship, the first thing that needs to building between the parties involved is communication. For our purposes today it is even more important so that we know when to stop, we know how to adjust our play to make it push the limits, the personal boundaries, to create scenes that are the most intense and memorable possible.

Communications are vital, and they should be open, honest and complete. Communication in real life (RL) involves so much more than the words we use, you have the body language, facial expressions and the eyes to aide you. In SL we have to be more careful to communicate fully our concepts and ideas to each other. It takes time, it takes honesty and for a kinky lifestyle, it is vital so that we don’t damage each other mentally beyond recognition. How can this happen? As you build the bonds deeper, and as you delve into the heart and soul of your partner, you are getting past the boundaries, past the walls into their deepest self, you are going to help them grow, blossom and bloom into more. When you have them laid bare, when you are pushing their limits, their soft boundaries you risk causing damage. For this, we establish a safe-word, a way to stop the scene so that we can then talk about what is hurting, what is making us uncomfortable.

So right here, right now, would be a good time for you to establish a safe word, some word that you would not use otherwise that if you type it means ALL STOP. It wouldn’t hurt to have a cuddle word too, a word that means I don’t want you to stop but I need a cuddle for a minute while I am coming to terms with what we are doing.

As a Dominant, It is your job to protect and help your partner grow, to help them be strong when they are weak, and to push past their boundaries. You will grow as well; you will become what you need to be to help your special love be what they need to be. It is never a one-way flow of information or learning. This is all part of the communication; you will need to learn to go beyond what you think you know, to what is real. Have you ever thought everything was okay in a relationship, felt secure, only to find out it wasn’t and they left you, hurt you, and perhaps cheated on you? Do you think that if you had deep communication that this might not have happened? This of course does not mean that relationships never end and that communication is the only answer but it does help keep misunderstandings and pain down.

For women, these things apply to you even outside of a Dominate/submissive (D/s) relationship; these concepts make your relationship stronger, and allow you to be closer. Women are so much more cerebral than men are; you start in a woman’s head and work out from there. If you want to hold a woman tightly, you have to work through her mind, to her body then her soul. Stimulus for a man is immediate, more physical, more wired directly from the stimulus to the sexual organs.

The process of introduction into BDSM involves experiencing each new thing one-step at a time. A little taste of the new experience followed by some time to consider how it made you both feel, communication about the feelings, considering if you should move further and try more. If you decide to try more, proceed in the same fashion, one-step at a time.

This will allow you to gauge your appetite for more, and to deal with whatever concerns or issues you may need to address internally and with your partner before proceeding. This process continues and repeats itself, both for particular activities and for D/s itself. Whether submissive or Dominant we all need to come to terms with what we like, why we like it, what it means about us, what it means about and for our partners and what it will mean for our relationships.

This will help your partner find their limits, hard and soft, and determine what level of submission and erotic power exchange they need and enjoy. Are they a “brat” who wants to misbehave and be soundly disciplined? Are they a “good boy/girl” who is eager to please and hates to be found misbehaving? The Dominate is also exploring what it is that really turns them on. These things need to be talked about because as partners you will do some things that the other enjoys to please them and the exchange needs to be discussed. It needs to be mutual to some degree. Sometimes a Dominant really likes something the submissive hates, how much is it hated, is it a soft boundary that can be explored anyway or a hard fast boundary that will eventually cause you to want to part ways.

Communication is vital here, because what I say you may understand differently. When I say something, you may think it means something different, so talking about what it is you mean, and exploring with each other is important.

Each step in the exploration is a scene. Each step is an exchange of power, needs trust, must have good communication and after each scene you need to take some cuddle time to talk freely and openly.

This is true in any relationship; you must have deep sharing to truly grow together. A comfortable, well-loved shoe must be worn to become a comfortable well-loved shoe.

Therefore, a good Dominant will create experiences for the partner to share in, they will create new experiences, and they will consider the needs of the sub and develop things that will help the sub grow. It is not all sexual; it is all very personal, it will all cause the bond between the two to become greater.

If you were not wanting to be together, if this was just a scene between two strangers perhaps then you would not have to worry as much. You would agree on a safe word, you would agree on a scenario, and you would both act it out, you would talk a few minutes afterwards and then both go your separate ways.

However, if your goal is lasting growth and deep explorations you need more. Yes, the same basics are involved; you need to try a fetish, experience it and then you need to reflect on how you felt about the experience. When you have thought it through, then talk about it with your partner, find out how they felt and share your experiences. If one of you was uncomfortable, is there something that you should work through to grow stronger or is it just something that you should write off and not try again.

In SL we are limited; we have to stretch our imaginations to keep the relationships fresh. The explorations we do will help us keep the intimacy fresh and exciting.

At this point perhaps we should look at what BDSM is and isn’t. It is often lumped together but frankly just because someone enjoys the feel of a hand smacking their bottom once and awhile it does not mean that they are masochists. Just because you love the feel of the bottom beneath your hand does not make you a sadist. When someone pinches your nipple at just the right moment, or bites down on your neck in the heat of passion, and you enjoy it, that does not make you some sort of life-styler.

This is why you need to explore.

D/S, S/M, and B/D are the terms most often used today to refer to the “lifestyle”. They are distinctly different in that D/S stands for Dominance and Submission, S/M stands for Sadism and Masochism while B/D stands for Bondage and Discipline. These are three distinctly different lifestyles.

Bondage is very sensual; it requires great trust and the willingness to give over to your partner the decisions about what you will do. It requires you trust that they will not do you harm. In RL when you are bound and made to feel sooo good that your body reacts and you are taken to new sexual heights that is bliss in itself. In SL you have to imagine what it would be like to be pushed beyond your limits, to have your partners hands exploring all over your body and you can do nothing but feel and experience.

Dominance is also sensual; it is very mental, and again, it requires great trust and with the trust comes great responsibility. In the old traditional male/female relationship, it was easy. The man was dominant, he cared for his wife and family, he was in control, in charge, he was the father, the man of the house, the person who had the final say on everything. This is sort of like a Dominant in a relationship. The D must evaluate the situation and take responsibility for the outcome. In SL and RL the sub gives over the dominate position to their partner, and trusts that they know best, and will do nothing to harm them.

Sadism is usually very physical, can be intensely sensual; and again, trust is of utmost importance. You may not like to cause pain, and it is possible to use corporal punishment and not be turned on by pain. The term sadism in its classic and clinical sense refers to the sexual pleasure and gratification derived from inflicting pain and suffering on another person. That gratification may be more about the power over your partner and their reactions to the pain. The psychological basis of sadism centers on the desire to dominate and control, to have such power over the submissive. This desire is more often than not, acted out in a sexual context and varies in the degree of violence from mere role-play to actual beating and torturing.

Masochism is nearly the opposite of sadism, the need to feel the pain. The Masochist needs to feel more, and perhaps to have less control. The masochist is often submissive and will gain sexual arousal or orgasm dependent on receiving punishment, discipline, humiliation, or servitude. This need can be physical, mental and can be displayed in many fashions.

Now, a natural exploration for a couple may bring that couple to explore some of the facets of BDSM without ever being into the scene. Instead of whips the torture might be with feathers. The bindings might be silk, the torture can simply provide intense pleasure. This is very common, it is probably more the norm than anything else and as you explore you will find those things that truly build your relationship. The domination might switch from one partner to the other from scene to scene. The exploration still requires trust and communication, and a safe word is still important. Remember at all times and in each of the separate lifestyles and in all your explorations, all actions must be SAFE, SANE, and CONSENSUAL.

Let’s get some more definitions out of the way real quick:

Dominant one - the controlling person. They may be a Master, a Mistress, a Dom, a Domme, a Goddess, a Lord, a Switch, or a Top.

submissive one - the one who chooses to be controlled or dominated. They may be a submissive, a slave, a switch, or a bottom.

submissive - one who chooses to be submissive but who does not give total control of all aspects of their lives to a Dominant one.

slave - one who has given all aspects of their lives, physically, sexually, and mentally to be controlled by a Dominant one and who usually has a contracted relationship.

Dom or Domme - one who is a Dominant one.

Master or Mistress - A Dominant one who has accepted the gift of submission from a submissive one who then has become theirs.

Floating or subbie space - The state where the submissive one relinquishes all control to the Dominant one, and simply put, floats on a cloud, thus reaching a state of euphoria.

Switch - one who chooses at different times to be either a Dominant one or a submissive one.

bottom - one who chooses to be scened or sessioned by a Dominant one but who is not necessarily a submissive one.

Top - one who chooses to scene or session a submissive one but who is not necessarily a Dominant one.

Goddess - usually a Domme who has been trained under the “Old Guard” and who has earned the right to be worshipped and obeyed and who trains other Dom/mes, Masters, Mistresses, submissives, Switches, Tops, bottoms, and slaves.

Lord - the masculine equivalent of Goddess.

Limits – the boundaries, these are actions, areas, or degrees of pain and/or experiences that are not to be inflicted upon a submissive one.

boy - a term used for a submissive male without regard to actual true age.

girl - a term used for a submissive female without regard to actual true age.

Dominatrix - a female Dominant one who is paid for sceneing or sessioning.

The major difference in the two lifestyles, D/S and B/D, are that of pain and humiliation. In the D/S lifestyle control by use of pain or humiliation is not necessary. The control is relinquished by the submissive one willingly to the Dominant one. The Dominant one controls by voice and punishment. In the B/D scene the punishment is more severe and pain and humiliation is more a part of the ongoing relationship. Pain and humiliation are incorporated in scenes or sessions on a regular basis. Punishment is given for misdeeds or failure to obey, warmth is given for obeying. One must remember this is a game of love, and that love is required at all times, even during the act of punishment.

This is all an exchange of power, one party agreeing to give over some sort and some amount of control to the other party. Mutual respect, love, and compassion are always an important part in any play. In all cases, the Dominant one, the Master/Mistress whoever is in charge and responsible for the protection and safety of the submissive one. They must honor and cherish them. Love and respect reins above all in these relationships. If you are submissive/slave, it means that you consent - or choose - to submit. In other words, your submission is a gift that should be respected by whomever you choose as your Dominant. If you are Dominant, you consent to accept that gift and respect the person who offers it.