An Incomplete and Completely Biased Glossary of Sexual Terms and Concepts
24/7: denotes twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. Often used to refer to the amount of time people spend in the bounds of a power exchange relationship. See TPE.
69: common slang used to refer to two people performing oral sex on each other at the same time.
Abandonment: in this context, the often fetishized, practice of a D-type ignoring, neglecting, or abandoning a consenting s-type. The s-type might be left in a room, put in a corner, bound, or contained in a cage or box, then left alone for a period of time. This concept also applies to a popular type of phone sex called the ignore line.
ABDL: acronym for Adult Baby Diaper Lover. See also, Adult Baby.
ABS plastic: acrylonitrile butadiene styrene, a sturdy, non-porous, non-carcinogenic plastic often used in sex toy construction. Considered body-safe for these reasons.
Abstinence: in this context, denotes the practice of refraining from sexual activity.
Abstinence-only Education: the practice of teaching abstinence as the only method to prevent transmission of STIs and unwanted pregnancy. Does not include education on safer sex practices, condom use, or birth control methods. Has been shown to be ineffective at preventing unwanted teen pregnancy, or preventing STI transmission. Also, does not appear to delay onset of sexual activity in teens.
Acrotomophilia: a fetish for amputees.
Actirasty: a fetish for the sun’s rays.
Addiction: see Sex Addiction.
Adhesion: in the context of sexual health, this occurs when the foreskin becomes stuck to the head of the penis. Adhesions often make it painful for people who are uncircumsised to roll back the foreskin. This is usually preventable by pulling back the foreskin and washing the head of penis regularly. When they are formed, adhesions are easily treated by a health care professional.
Adult: indicates a person who is not a minor according to state law, which is 18 in most states. Also used to note subject-matter that is only appropriate for adult audiences.
Adult Baby: a person who is sexually aroused by or fetishizes acting and/or dressing like a baby.
Adult Baby Diaper Lover: a person who fetishizes being a baby and wearing diapers.
Adult Nursing Relationship: a sexual activity in which one adult either breastfeeds or simulates breastfeeding another. See ANR.
Advocate: someone who calls attention to a social problem and asks people with authority (lawmakers, school board members, etc.) to address that problem. Or, to call attention to a social problem and to work actively toward a positive change that addresses that problem.
Aftercare: the practice of caring for someone after a BDSM scene. Typically, the top in the scene will care for the bottom afterwards by providing comfort, affection, or physical necessities like water, snacks, blankets, etc.
Aftercare Kit: a pre-prepared bag of things that will be needed for aftercare. Many bottoms bring their own kit to ensure they have things they like; particular snacks, favorite blankets, bottled water, etc.
AFAB: an acronym for Assigned Female at Birth, a term usually preferred by transgender and intersex individuals to describe a child born with a vulva, or indeterminate genitalia.
Age Play: a type of play in which consenting adults behave and/or dress as a younger than they are. Players usually have a specific age range with which they identify and play at being that age. Some age players report their play as being less pretend than it is a state of age regression. Age play can be sexual or non-sexual depending on the players.
Age Regression: when an adult person reverts to a child-like state of mind or behavior. Regression can be a coping mechanism for mental health issues such as PTSD, anxiety, or depression, but it can also be a desired state of mind intentionally achieved by an adult who finds regression relaxing or calming. Also, commonly called “Little Space.”
Ally: someone who is not a member of a group that tends to be discriminated against (such as people who identify as LGBTQ) but who works to support members of that group. See also, Privilege.
AMAB: an acronym for Assigned Male at Birth, a term usually preferred by transgender and intersex individuals to describe a child born with a penis, or indeterminate genitalia.
Amateur: often refers to pornography made by amateur individuals and/or featuring inexperienced actors, as opposed to professional porn actors in studio productions.
Anal Beads: a sex toy made of a length of consecutive beads, usually varying in size, used for anal stimulation. The primary stimulation of anal beads comes from their insertion and removal. Often removed at the point of climax to increase the intensity.
Analingus: Anal play in which one partner uses their mouth to stimulate the other person’s anus.
Anal Lubricant: a lubricant specifically designed for anal sex, usually thicker, and with a higher viscosity, though, any type of lube can be used depending on the type of anal play.
Anal Play: any sexual activity involving the anus, including but not limited to penetration.
Anal Sex: anal penetration.
Androgynous: a person whose gender cannot be determined by appearance, or who appears to be equally masculine and feminine.
ANR: acronym for Adult Nursing Relationship.
Anus: the opening where the gastrointestinal tract ends and exits the body. Also, full of lovely nerve endings that can be stimulated through penetration.
Arm Binders: a bondage device used to immobilize the arms.
Arousal: a mental, emotional, and/or physical state of sexual excitement.
Asexual: a sexual orientation characterized by a lack of sexual attraction to others, and/or low or absent sexual desire.
Assault: the act of inflicting non-consensual physical harm or unwanted physical contact on a person.
Asshole: see Anus.
Ass Hook: a hook shaped object, usually metal. One end is inserted into the anus, and one end is tied to the hair or other object. Usually used in predicament bondage.
Ass Play: see Anal Play.
ATM: an acronym for Ass to Mouth. See Analingus.
Attraction: being drawn to someone or something through interest, pleasure, or liking of that someone or something.
Autoerotic: sexual excitement generated by stimulation of or attraction to one’s own body.
Autoerotic Asphyxiation: a sexual practice in which a person devises a way to choke themselves while masturbating.
Autogynephilia: refers to a male who is sexually aroused by seeing himself dressed as a female.
Baby Girl/Boy: an adult person who enjoys feeling smaller or younger than they are. Might include age-play and may or may not be sexual in nature. Can also be a term of endearment used by a Top/ Master/ Dominant/ Caretaker toward their bottom/ slave/ submissive/ girl/ boy.
Ball Gag: a device in which a ball is inserted into the mouth, which may silence or muffle the vocalizations of the wearer. Usually includes a strap that fastens around the back of the head. See Gag.
Balls: see Testicles.
Bara: a genre of Japanese homoerotica in which men are depicted as romantically and sexually involved. Often created by gay men for gay men. Also called men’s love. See Yaoi.
Bare-backing: slang for engaging in penetrative sex without a condom.
Bar Gag: a device in which a horizontal bar is inserted into the mouth between the teeth, which may silence or muffle the vocalizations of the wearer. Usually includes a strap fastened around the back of the head. See Gag.
Bathroom Control: a practice in which one person controls when another can use the bathroom. Might include making someone wet themselves.
Bawdy: an adjective for things dealing with sexual matters in a comical way; humorously indecent.
BBW/M: Big Beautiful Woman/Man, a term for a large, overweight, or obese person with a positive connotation. Often denotes a fetish.
BDSM: denotes a group of sexual practices including Bondage, Domination, Submission, Sadism, & Masochism.
Bear: a gay man who projects an air of rugged masculinity. They are stereotypically hairy and/or large.
Begging: a BDSM practice in which the bottom is made to beg the top. Can be used as a form of control, punishment, or humiliation.
Ben-Wa Balls: Weighted balls usually inserted into the vagina as a kegel exerciser.
Big: one degree of the “little” identity, Bigs are adults who identify as or play at being adolescents or teenagers.
Binary: of or relating to social and cultural conventions that see gender and sexual identities as either/or. Namely masculine or feminine, male or female, gay or straight. An oversimplification of the wonderful complexity of human gender and sexuality. See Gender Spectrum and Sexual Spectrum.
Birth Control: any method of reducing the risk of an unwanted pregnancy, including hormonal birth control pills, IUDs, diaphragms, hormonal implants, and less effective methods like “the rhythm method” and abstinence-only education.
Birth Control Pill: a hormonal method of reducing the risk of unwanted pregnancy. Highly effective when used correctly. The only downsides are remembering to take the pill every day, and the prevalence of side effects.
Bisexual: sexual orientation characterized by attraction to both men and women, not necessarily equally.
Bit: similar to a bar gag, a bit is placed in the mouth between the teeth, but is usually specific to pony play.
Biting: the sexual practice of biting. Can be used for pleasure or pain.
Blinders: another tool for pony play, blinders are worn on the sides of the head and block peripheral vision. Many pony masks include blinders.
Bloodhound: slang for a person who either enjoys or doesn’t mind performing oral sex on a woman who is on her period.
Blood Play: a form of edge play that includes any play involving active bleeding. Might include cutting, needle play or knife play.
Blow job: oral sex, usually performed on a penis.
Blue: an old term for media or subjects that contain profane or sexual material, such as a “blue” movie or “blue” comedian.
Blue-balls: slang for the heavy, aching sensation that occurs in the testicles when a person is aroused without release for an extended period of time. “Blue balls” has often been used as a means of coercing sexual activity from a non-consenting partner. The reality is that the sensation of blue balls does no permanent or lasting harm to the individual experiencing it and will go away on its own as arousal subsides or when the person masturbates.
Bodily Fluid: tears, saliva, seminal fluid, vaginal lubricant, female ejaculate, urine, sweat, blood, and even feces. It is important to be conscious of potential contact with most bodily fluids in order to prevent transmission of STIs. Roll around in all the tears you want, though. See Fluid Bonding, and Safe(r) Sex.
Body Painting: used for both arousal and artistic expression, body painting is the practice of painting on skin.
Body-safe: a product or item that has been determined to be safe for application or use on or inside the body. Usually refers to materials used in sex toy construction.
Boi: a flexible and usually affectionate term used in LGBTQ and butch/femme communities to denote a person who is Butch/ Trans/ or Genderqueer in some way, and also has butch or effeminate characteristics, or is younger or newer in their community.
Bondage: the sexual practice of using restraints. Can be as simple as handcuffs, or as complicated as Shibari.
Bondage Tape: tape used specifically for bondage that sticks to itself but does not stick to hair or skin.
Bondassage: a trademarked sexual practice that combines bondage and erotic massage. Usually occurs between a practitioner and a client, but can also be an intimate practice.
Boner: slang for an erection. See also, Lady Boner.
Boot Blacking: the act of caring for, polishing, and otherwise maintaining boots, shoes, and other leather apparel. Popular in the BDSM community to the point of becoming a competitive activity.
Boot Worship: a BDSM activity in which a submissive worships a Dominant’s boots. Might include boot blacking, boot licking, or other forms of paying close attention to or servicing the boots.
Bottom: the recipient of BDSM activities regardless of usual relationships or roles. A submissive can be a bottom, but a Dominant might also “bottom” for another Dominant for the purpose of demonstration or sexual activity.
Boundaries: in this context, usually personal and social parameters of acceptable interactions and behaviors. Differs from limits in that limits usually refer to concrete acts, while boundaries refer to emotional and social conventions. “I don’t like to be tickled” is a limit, while “a person shouldn’t touch another person without their consent” is a boundary.
Branding: a form of edge play, the practice of burning decorative or symbolic marks into a person’s skin.
Brat: a type of submissive characterized by resistance to domination. Can be playful or serious in nature. A playful brat would be the type that plays tricks on their Dom or tries to wiggle out of bindings when tied. A serious brat would be the type that is spoiled and uses emotional manipulation to control or push others. Some in the kink community believe that a Brat is not a true submissive, while others enjoy the challenge of “taming” a brat. Still others enjoy their antics.
Brat Tamer: the type of Dominant who enjoys dominating, taming, or training the Brat.
Breathable Gag: usually refers to a ball gag that has holes in the ball to offer greater ease in breathing.
Breath Play: a form of edge play in which breathing is restricted to varying degrees of intensity and using various methods.
Breeding fetish: sexual arousal at the thought or reality of a person being intentionally impregnated. Also, a genre of porn that can include elements of cuckolding and/or race play.
Bukkake: a sexual practice popular in porn that involves a person being covered in great volumes of male ejaculate.
Bullet vibrator: a very small, discrete, and usually battery-operated vibrator. Takes its name from being classically bullet shaped.
Bull Whip: a single tail whip with a handle. The lash is a braided thong that connects in line with or even engulfs the handle. At the tip of the whip there is a fall and a cracker. The fall is the portion actually used to strike objects, and the cracker makes the loud sound.
Butch: a female identified person with a relatively masculine appearance. Usually lesbian as the term first appeared in the lesbian community as the masculine counterpart to the feminine Femme.
Butt Plug: a sex toy designed for static insertion into the anus. Can provide prostate stimulation or additional sensation in general during any sex acts. Some have additional features like vibration.
Caging: putting a person in a cage for punishment, comfort, or fun. Great for abandonment fantasies, pet play, and containing an s-type.
Cam Girl: a type of sex worker that poses or performs in front of a webcam.
Caning: using a long narrow bar to whip a bottom, sometimes on the bottom. Can be nearly any length, thickness or material. Differences in material will create different sensations.
Caretaker: the gender-neutral term for a protective and instructive D-type. Usually responsible for a baby girl/baby boy or little.
Cat O’ Nine Tails: a multi-tailed whip with a handle and knotted cords. This whip was actually designed to lacerate the skin as a form of extreme punishment.
CBT: an acronym for Cock and Ball Torture. Also stands for Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, which can by very confusing for kinky psych-majors.
Cervix: very simply put, the passage between the uterus and vagina that dilates open and closed, and acts as the gateway to the uterus.
Chastity Play: the sexual practice of denying sexual gratification. Can be accomplished through devices or through mental bondage.
Chastity Device: any device which prevents the wearer from achieving sexual gratification.
Choking: edge play that involves restricting the throat area by hand or using devices. Can be used as a form of breath play. There is also blood choking in which arterial blood flow is restricted to the point where a person nearly or completely passes out.
Circumcision: the practice of removing the foreskin from the penis, usually in infancy, but occasionally in adulthood. The primary reasons people circumcise are usually religious or hygiene related. Though, it has been recently determined that circumcision is not an effective means of preventing STIs or keeping the penis clean. Some view circumcision as a form of genital mutilation.
Cisgender: The gender of a person whose gender identity agrees with the gender they were assigned at birth.
Cisnormative: Refers to the assumption that all, or almost all, individuals are cisgender. Although transgender-identified people comprise a fairly small percentage of the human population, many trans people and allies consider it to be offensive to presume that everyone is cisgender unless otherwise specified.
Climax: the peak of sexual gratification, also known as orgasm.
Clit: see Clitoris.
Clitoral Hood: see Clitoris.
Clitoris: highly sensitive tissue that is a part of female genitals and is usually the area, that if stimulated, is most likely to create orgasm. When people refer to the clit, they are usually referring to the clitoral glans, a very small bit of tissue at the top of the labia minora, which lies just beneath a very small bit of skin called the clitoral hood. The whole clitoris is actually an underlying erectile structure with dual bulbs called vestibular bulbs that branch out from the clitoral stem and extend down the length of the vulva. Above those bulbs are structures called clitoral crura, or “legs” that lift and flare back when erect. It all looks quite a bit like an orchid, actually.
Cock: common slang for penis.
Cock & Ball Torture: a practice in which the penis and testicles are stimulated to the point of extreme discomfort. See CBT.
Cock Cage: a device that can be used in chastity play or in CBT play. It is used to contain the penis and prevent the wearer from achieving full erection or from achieving sexual gratification.
Cock Ring: a ring placed around the base of the cock, or around both cock and balls, that creates longer-lasting, and harder erections. May also increase the intensity of orgasm.
Cock Worship: a sexual activity in which someone worships another person’s penis. Might include washing, talking to, oral or other forms of paying close attention to or servicing the penis.
Coercion: the act of persuading a non-consenting person to do something or allow something through force or threats. Threats might be implicit or explicit, subtle or overt. Coercion is not consent.
Collar: a common device in BDSM, the collar often represents ownership of the s-type, by the D-type, whether temporarily, during a scene, or permanently via formal collaring. Collars can be functional as a means of controlling the movements of the bottom, or completely decorative or symbolic, like a piece of jewelry. May be made of nearly any material.
Collaring: often refers to the use of a collar during BDSM play. May also refer to the formalization of the relationship between an s-type and a D-type.
Collaring Ceremony: akin to a wedding, a collaring ceremony is the celebration of the previously mentioned formalization of a BDSM relationship. Often will include the placement of a formal collar on the s-type, symbolizing ownership by the D-type.
Condom: a safer sex device used to prevent unwanted pregnancies and/or the transmission of STI’s. They come in many varieties including lubricated, non-lubricated, latex, non-latex, spermicidal, tingly, warming, ribbed, and flavored.
Consensual Non-consent: an, often, pre-negotiated scene in which partners act like the sexual activity they are engaging in is non-consensual. See also, Rape Play. It is best practice to negotiate the parameters of non-consent play ahead of time, and to alert any nearby parties of the planned activity. You don’t want the cops showing up.
Consent: very simply, permission for something to happen or agreement on something to be done. Highly emphasized in sex-positive communities, consent is prioritized above all else. Consent requires that nothing should happen in sexual situations that is unwanted or not agreed to.
Consent Culture: a culture or social structure that emphasizes consent as a top priority, whether in sexual situations or otherwise.
Consent Violation: any act that falls outside the bounds of activity that has been consented to. Can range from more minor infractions like hitting a person with a cane when they only agreed to the use of a flogger, to major infractions like assault.
Control: in a sexual context, the enactment of the power one person has over another in a power exchange dynamic. This can include power over a person’s body, behavior, orgasms, movement, social interaction, home life, finances etc.
Coprophilia: a fetish for feces.
Corseting: the use of corsets either decoratively or to change the shape of the body. Might also be used in breath play.
Cowgirl/Boy: a sexual position in which the penetrator lies on their back and the penetrated rides on top facing toward their partner.
Cream pie: popular in pornography, a cream pie is the moment after male ejaculation into a vagina, or anus, when the ejaculate begins to leak, or is pushed, back out. There is often a camera close-up to emphasize the moment. A cream pie may also be eaten by the person who ejaculated or by another person.
Crawling: often used as a part of D/s, M/s, pet, and humiliation or degradation play, a bottom may be made to crawl on hands and knees instead of walking.
Crop: a long, thin, semi-flexible shaft with a handle. Often has a looped or flat piece of leather on the end. Designed as a horse whip, but common in BDSM play.
Cuckold(ing): sexual activity in which one partner has sex with a third party (or more) while the other partner watches. As opposed to cheating, the Cuckold enjoys and gets off on their partner having sex with others and leaving them out. Cuckold used to be a term for a man whose wife was cheating, but over time it has developed into a fetish.
Cuffs: wrist and or ankle restraints. May be made of any material.
Cuffing: either the practice of using cuffs, or slang for “tying someone down” in a relationship.
Cuffing Season: the time of year when people long to be in a committed relationship, or “cuffed.” Though, it would be more fun if there were a season for handcuffs.
Cum: slang for ejaculate, both male and female. Also slang for having an orgasm. Also spelled come.
Cum Dumpster: a derogatory term for a person that other people ejaculate inside of. Denotes promiscuity. Can also be a term of endearment for those who enjoy promiscuity in others. Can also be used in a playfully derogatory way during humiliation or degradation play.
Cunnilingus: Oral sex on a vagina.
Cupping: cups, bowls or bells are applied, often to erogenous zones such as the nipples, breasts, buttocks, inner thighs, and clitoris. This increases blood flow and can make them more sensitive to other kinds of touch. The three key methods of cupping used in BDSM include dry cupping, where a vacuum is created in the cup by mechanical means, fire cupping, where a combustible is used to create suction, and wet cupping, which includes adding small lacerations to the skin to draw blood via suction. Dry cupping is the easiest and safest cupping method. Fire cupping and wet cupping are both forms of edge play.
Cutting: in a sexual context, the practice of using knives, razors, or other blades to cut the skin. The purpose can be decorative or a form of Blood Play, or both. See also, Knife Play.
Daddy: term for a male identified, or masculine Caretaker type.
Dacryphilia: sexual arousal from tears or sobbing.
DD/lg: denotes the Daddy Dom and little girl dynamic. Similar to the Dominant and submissive relationship dynamic, DD/lg is a power exchange relationship, but one in which the Dom is also a Caretaker and the submissive is also a little. Might or might not include age play, might or might not be sexual in nature.
Degradation: a form of play in which the bottom is consensually degraded, often emotionally as well as sexually. A person might be called names, shamed, neglected, or made to perform embarrassing or humiliating acts.
Dental Dam: a barrier used between the mouth and genitals during oral sex, in order to prevent transmission of STIs.
Desire: attraction, longing, fantasy. Also denotes arousal.
Diaphragm: an older form of birth control which uses a small rubber cup placed on the cervix to block the entry of sperm into the uterus.
Dildo: a phallic object designed to be used for penetrative sex or masturbation. They come in a ton of shapes and sizes for various purposes and can be very realistic or very not. If you have a hole in your body that needs filling, a dildo might just do the job.
Dirty Talk: obscene or explicit talk used before or during sex to create a heightened state of arousal.
Discipline: often used by the D-type in a power exchange relationship to guide or control the behavior of the consenting s-type. Often pre-negotiated, discipline might include systems of punishment and reward.
DM: in a BDSM context this stands for Dungeon Monitor. DM can be confusing, however, to the kinky D&D Dungeon Master or the kinky social media Direct Messenger.
Doggy Style: a sexual position in which the penetrator enters the penetrated from behind, while the penetrated is on all fours. Just like dogs.
Dom: denotes a male Dominant.
Domme: denotes a female Dominant.
Dominant: the role in a power exchange dynamic that holds power over consenting s-types. There are many types within the Dominant role, including Caretaker, Master/Mistress, Owner, Dom etc. Might also refer to a personality type that takes up social space or dominates.
Dom Drop: when a Dominant experiences a drop in mood or a depressive phase after a scene. Might occur immediately or some time afterward. Can be attributed to a crash after experiencing a rush of endorphins, or simply an emotional shift when a satisfying or happy period of time ends. Not as commonly discussed as sub drop even though it seems to be just as common, probably due to the false assumption that a Dominant cannot appear “fragile” in the same way a submissive can.
Door Cuffs: Bondage cuffs designed to be secured over or under a door.
Downward Negotiation: the perfectly acceptable practice of changing one’s mind during a scene and deciding to not participate in something one had previously agreed to. Consent y’all.
DP: stands for double penetration.
D/s: denotes the Dominant and submissive relationship dynamic. It is a common convention to always capitalize the D and keep the s lowercase.
D-type: a catch-all term for all kinds of dominants. Male/Female, Master/Mistress, Dom/Domme, Daddy/Mommy, Predator etc.
Double Penetration: usually penetration in the vagina and asshole at the same time. Occasionally two penises or dildos in the same hole at once.
Dungeon: a location, public or private, that is specifically set up for BDSM activities. Might include specific furniture or tools made for BDSM activities. Usually has explicit rules for allowed acts and behavior. Often there is an emphasis on Safe, Sane and Consensual activity. There is usually a DM, or dungeon monitor, and a house safeword. Also called a play space.
Dungeon Monitor: a person tasked with maintaining a safe, sane, and consensual environment in a dungeon, public or private. This person will be responsible for making sure that Dungeon rules are followed and will be available to assist should any scene or situation go wrong.
DVDA: stands for Double Vaginal Double Anal, in which four total dildos or penises penetrate the asshole and vagina at the same time.
Eater: a person who gets sexual gratification out of eating. See also, Feeder.
ED: stands for Erectile Dysfunction.
Edge Play: any play that pushes the edge of safe, sane, and consensual. These acts have the potential to be very dangerous.
Edging: a sex act in which someone is brought to the brink of orgasm repeatedly, but not allowed to for an extended period of time. Can range from teasing to torture. See also, Orgasm Control and Orgasm Denial.
Effeminate: behavior or dress that is perceived to be traditionally feminine. Usually applied to men and often used as a pejorative.
Eggs: see Ovum.
Egg vibrator: slightly larger than a bullet vibrator, and obviously egg shaped.
Ejaculation: Usually refers to the expulsion of seminal fluid at the moment of male orgasm. May also refer to female ejaculation.
Electroplay: a form of sensation play involving the use of electricity to stimulate. Sensations can range from a light tingling, to deep muscular feelings, to a sharp pain.
Endorphins: a group of hormones secreted by the brain and nervous system, that attach to opiate receptors in the brain and have a pain relieving effect. These hormones are often released in response to physical distress and in the context of BDSM activity are likely responsible for the “high” people get from engaging in stressful or painful activities. See Sub Space.
Enema: a method of anal cleansing in which a device is used to insert water into the asshole. Can be used for reasons of hygiene or for play, as in medical scenes.
Enthusiastic Consent: consent that is not just permissive, but excited about the proposed sexual activity.
Erectile Dysfunction: when a person with a penis is unable to achieve or maintain an erection. ED is extremely common and can be temporary or ongoing. Can be related to any number of medical issues or mental or emotional states.
Erection: an autonomic nervous system response that usually occurs when a state of arousal is reached and hormones cause blood to rush to the penis. The penis then becomes enlarged and rigid.
Erogenous Zone: any area of the body that, when stimulated, creates arousal. Used to be limited to the major arousal areas like the clitoris, the nipples, and the penis. Has been expanded to include all the other areas of the body that might be stimulated, which means that each person will have their own erogenous zones. Have fun finding yours!
Erotic: relating to or tending to create states of arousal. Often used in reference to art forms that are sexual in nature.
Erotica: difficult to define, erotica is essentially sexually arousing material that is also artistic in nature, as opposed to pornography which is solely concerned with arousal and not necessarily artistic value.
Ethical Porn: porn in which care is taken to treat the actors fairly and with respect, to represent real human interactions, and to be representative of all bodies and kinds of people.
Ethical Slut: a term coined by Dossie Easton and Janet W. Hardy, the authors of a book by the same name. Refers to a person who is promiscuous or polyamorous in a conscientious and honest way.
Exhibitionism: sexual arousal from being seen by, noticed by, and/or performing in front of others.
Face-fucking: Oral sex in which the person with the penis or penetrating device is in charge of the rhythm and pace. Usually rough, face-fucking often includes gagging, choking, and throat-fucking.
Fallopian Tubes: the connecting passage between the ovaries and the uterus, through which ovum pass.
Fantasy: in a sexual context, the existence of specific desires within the mind. Fantasies can be scenarios that a person hopes to make real, or scenarios that are not possible in real life, but still have erotic power.
Feeder: a person who is sexually aroused by feeding people. Part of the arousal is usually in the idea of making a thin person gain weight, or a heavy person heavier. See Eater.
Fellatio: Oral sex performed on a penis.
Female: anyone who identifies as such. In binary and normative societies there are often rigid associations and definitions for what “qualifies” a person as female, usually having to do with genitalia and expectations around behavior and appearance. These are social constructs, not facts.
Female Ejaculate: a topic of debate for a long time, it has finally been determined that female ejaculate is real. It is still somewhat complicated since there are multiple elements involved. Basically, one of three things happen when a woman gushes or squirts. One, there is a small gush of whitish fluid from tiny glands on the side of the urethra, called Skene’s peri-urethral glands, but also sometimes referred to as the “female prostate” Two, urine is expelled from the bladder. Coital Incontinence (CI) is divided into 2 groups: women that have problems with incontinence in general, including during sexual activity, and women who lose urine only during orgasm. Women who squirt urine only during orgasm usually don’t identify it as urine because it is far more dilute and doesn't smell or look like urine even though it comes out of the bladder. Three, a combination of both. See also, Gushing and Squirting.
Feminine: displaying traits traditionally perceived as female.
Feminist: a person who believes that women should have the same social, political and economic opportunities as men, and advocates for such on the basis of equality between the sexes.
Feminist Porn: porn that acknowledges equality between the sexes and endeavors to empower women to express their sexuality in whatever way they see fit.
Femme: A female identified person with a relatively feminine appearance. Usually lesbian, as the term first appeared in the lesbian community as the feminine counterpart to the masculine Butch.
Fertility: the ability to reproduce, or the quality of reproduction.
Fertility Symbol: an image or object which represents elements of reproduction, like the phallus, or the ability to reproduce, like the Venus of Willendorf. These are often used in religious or ceremonial capacities to encourage or ask for fertility.
Fetish: a form of sexual desire in which gratification is linked to an abnormal degree to a particular object, item of clothing, part of the body, etc.
Figging: the insertion of a piece of skinned ginger root into the anus or vagina, which creates an intense burning sensation. Originally a form of torture in ancient Greece and in Victorian-era Holy Roman Empire, now a form of torture for fun.
Fingerbang(ing): also called finger fucking, usually refers to using the fingers to penetrate and stimulate the vagina or anus. Also, a great way to hit the G-spot or P-spot.
Fire Play: a form of edge play, fire play is the use of flame and/or heat to create sensation. Can be combined with other activities and other temperature play techniques.
Fisting: also known as fist fucking, this is the act of inserting the entire hand into the anus or vagina.
Fleshlight: a trademarked masturbator that looks like a flashlight on the outside and feels like a vagina or an anus on the inside. Many of them are modeled after actual porn stars.
Flirt: behaving as though attracted to or trying to be attractive to someone. Can be sincere or for personal amusement and is usually casual or non-committal in nature.
Flogger: a tool for impact play, floggers consist of a handle and a fall. The handle can be wood, metal, or a braided continuation of the fall itself. The fall consists of several strands, usually some kind of leather, though many other materials may be used. The sensation created depends on the type of material used, the length and thickness of the strands, and the manner in which it is used. Sensations range from thuddy to stingy.
Flogging: Using a flogger to whip or beat a consenting person.
Florentine Style: a two-handed flogging style in which two floggers are used simultaneously in a rotating figure eight pattern.
Fluid Bonding: a fluid bonded couple have unprotected sex only with each other. A porous sex toy or tool and a person can also be fluid bonded if the tool is solely used on that person.
Fluid Exchange: intentional exchange of bodily fluids without protection.
Food Play: the use of food in sexual activity. Can be messy as in sploshing or sensual as in using whipped cream on a partner’s body. See also, Nyotaimori.
Foot Fetish: sexual arousal from feet. Often includes fetishized use of shoes and stockings.
Foot Job: stimulating the genitals with the feet.
Foot Worship: a BDSM activity in which a submissive worships a Dominant’s feet. Might include cleaning, painting toe nails, licking, massage, or other forms of paying close attention to or servicing the feet.
Foreplay: any romantic or sexual activity intended to create or increase arousal before intercourse.
Foreskin: the retractable skin that covers the head of the penis.
Friend Zone: a non-existent state of friendship in which one person resents being rejected romantically by the other. Usually used in an attempt to manipulate a non-consenting person into sexual or romantic activity. Friends don’t act like that.
Frotteurism: technically, a fetish for touching strangers in crowds without their consent. A frotteurism fantasy can be enacted among consenting adults, but actual frotteurism is assault.
Fuck(ing): slang for sexual intercourse. Usually indicates penetration.
Fucking Machine: a sex toy that mimics penetrative sex through motorized thrusting and rotation.
Funishment: When a D-type “punishes” an s-type using a method that the s-type enjoys. For example: spanking a person for bad behavior when the person loves to be spanked.
Furry: in a sexual context, a person who has a fetish for anthropomorphic animals and/or dressing as such. On its own, the term Furry does not denote sexual activity or attraction. See Yiff.
Gag: anything used in the mouth to limit or prevent speech.
Gagging: using a gag on someone. Also, the result of throat and/or face fucking.
Gang Bang: three or more people having sex with one other partner as the bottom. A popular genre of porn.
Gates of Hell: a penile chastity device that uses several rings attached to a strip of leather. It prevents the wearer from achieving an erection or getting sexual gratification.
Gay: a sexual orientation characterized by sexual and/or romantic attraction to people of the same gender. Used particularly to describe men, but can also be gender-neutral.
Gender: a chosen or assigned social and cultural identity based on existent or non-existent traits on the gender spectrum between masculine and feminine.
Gender Dysphoria: the distress a person experiences as the result of the gender they were assigned at birth not matching the person’s gender identity. See Transgender.
Gender Expression: how a person chooses to outwardly express their gender identity.
Gender-fluid: a gender identity that is not static but flows freely between genders. A gender-fluid person might identify with more masculine traits one day and more feminine traits another.
Genderfucking: any gender identity or practice which defies social or cultural gender norms.
Gender-neutral: refers to any terminology that does not denote gender.
Genderplay: The act of assuming a gender other than one’s own for the purpose of entertainment, usually sexual in nature.
Genderqueer: a catch-all category for gender identities that are not exclusively masculine or feminine—identities which are outside the gender binary and cisnormativity. Genderqueer people may express a combination of masculinity and femininity, or neither, in their gender expression. See also, Non-binary.
Gender Spectrum: the concept that gender is not just male/female, either/or but consists of many identities that fall along a spectrum.
Genitals: external reproductive and sexual organs. See Penis and Vulva.
Genitorture: stimulation of the genitals to the point of overwhelm.
Gerontophilia: sexual attraction to the elderly, or people considerably older than oneself.
GGG: good, giving, and game. A phrase from Dan Savage that denotes the requirements for being a high quality sexual partner.
Gimp: a (consenting) sex slave, usually male.
Glides: see Lubricant.
Golden Showers: when one person urinates on another for sexual purposes. See Urolagnia and Water Sports.
Gonads: internal reproductive organs that produce gametes. See Testicles and Ovaries.
Gorean: denotes the cultural world in John Norman’s Gor novels. Can also refer to the subculture that admires and imitates that culture. See Kajira.
Gratification: pleasure, especially when gained from the satisfaction of a desire. May also refer to climax or orgasm.
G-spot: a part of the clitoral network located inside the vagina, that can cause vaginal orgasm and female ejaculation when stimulated. Each body is different, so the best way to find the g-spot is to try it out and see what works. A good place to start is two fingers inserted into the vagina, finger tips facing the front of the body, and moved in a “come hither” motion.
Gun Play: sexual play using an unloaded firearm for psychological and physical stimulation.
Gushing: The product of female ejaculation, an expulsion of liquid achieved on orgasm. See also, Squirting.
Hair-pulling: a form of sensation play in which the hair is pulled. Can also be used as a form of control between Dom and sub.
Handcuffs: a common form of restraint in BDSM, particularly useful in police and prisoner fantasies.
Hand job: using the hand to stimulate the genitals. Most commonly refers to stimulating a penis.
Hard Limit: often outlined during the process of negotiation, hard limits refer to sexual activities that a person has no interest in and/or will not allow during the course of play.
Harness: torso restraints that can be decorative or functional.
Hemp: a material commonly used for bondage rope. It has a rough surface, so it’s ideal when you need your rope to grip.
Hentai: Pornographic anime or cartoons usually featuring sex acts that can’t happen in real life. One example is tentacle porn.
Heterosexual: A sexual orientation characterized by sexual and/or romantic attraction to a person or people of the opposite gender.
Heteronormative: Denoting or relating to a world view that promotes heterosexuality as the “normal” or preferred sexual orientation. The false assumption that all, or most, people are heterosexual, or ought to be.
High Protocol: a power exchange relationship or even group dynamic where many, if not most, activities are conducted ceremonially and tied to a detailed set of rules and rituals. Compared to “low protocol” which are more casual and often only dictate expectations for certain behaviors, “high protocol” is highly formal and usually governs most, if not all, facets of the relationship. High protocol is suited to 24/7 TPE.
Hip Harness: a harness that fits around the hips. May refer to a rope harness used for decoration, bondage, or suspension. May also refer to the type of hip harness used to hold a strap-on dildo.
Hole: in this context, refers to any fuckable cavity in the body, generally the mouth, anus or vagina.
Homosexual: The sexual orientation of a person who is sexually and/or romantically attracted to a person or people of the same gender.
Hood: a sensory deprivation device placed over the head. Some have eye, nose, or mouth holes. Might also refer to the clitoral hood.
Hook Suspension: see Suspension.
Hormonal Implant: a highly effective form of birth control in which hormones are implanted into the body. This solves the issue of forgetting to take the pill. The primary downside are side effects.
Hormones: any regulatory substance produced by glands in the body. These stimulate cells into action and are responsible for sexual development, and often influence mood and behavior.
Hormone Therapy: the supplementation or replacement of hormones naturally lacking in the body. Often used for menopausal women and trans men and women.
House Safe Word: a safe word provided by the Dungeon or play space to ensure that the DM and others will be able to recognize if a person needs help. Most commonly, “safe word.”
HRT: hormone replacement therapy.
Human Ashtray: a person used as an ashtray, usually as a part of degradation, humiliation, or service play.
Human Furniture: a person used as a piece of furniture or serving platter, usually as a part of degradation, humiliation, or service play. See also, Nyotaimori.
Human Pet: similar to other pet play, but the person playing pet doesn’t take on the characteristics of any other animals. It’s like literally keeping a human being as a pet. Ever see Fantastic Planet?
Humiliation: in this context, the practice of using shame and embarrassment to humiliate or control a consenting person. Can be playful or more serious. Can be erotic or used as a form of punishment. Public humiliation is a very common version of this type of play and is also a popular genre of porn.
Hymen: a membrane that partially closes the opening of the vagina and is traditionally considered a sign of virginity. However, not all women are born with a hymen, some only have a slight fringe of tissue, and many others disrupt the hymen during normal play or activity in youth, so the absence or presence of a hymen is not a good indicator of virginity.
Identity: the character, qualities, beliefs, and affiliations that distinguish a person. This can refer to how a person is perceived, but in the context of gender and sexuality, it more often refers to how a person sees themselves or how they feel on the inside.
Ignore Line: a type of phone sex line that involves a submissive calling a pay line in order to be ignored by a Dominant. Usually male submissives calling Pro Dommes.
Impregnation fetish: a fetish for or play involving getting someone pregnant. See Breeding.
Impact Play: sensation play that involves striking a consenting partner with varying implements and varying degrees of intensity. This includes spanking, punching, slapping, whipping, flogging, paddling and caning.
Intercourse: usually refers to penetrative sex which can performed anally or vaginally, and with a penis or a dildo.
Intersectionality: the interconnected nature of social categorizations such as race, class, sexuality and gender as they apply to a given individual or group, regarded as creating overlapping and interdependent systems of discrimination or disadvantage. It is particularly important to be mindful of this when considering issues of social justice for one group or another, because without considering the intersectional nature of injustice, we are bound to create deeper divides and ultimately fail in the mission to create true equality and inclusiveness.
Intersex: The gender identity of some people who do not identify as female or male. Also describes people born with any of several variations in sex characteristics including chromosomes, gonads, sex hormones, or genitals that, according to the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, "do not fit the typical definitions for male or female bodies."
IUD: a form of birth control in which a small t-shaped object is placed inside the uterus. It is safe, effective and works by preventing any potential fertilized eggs from being able to implant in the uterus.
Junk: slang for genitals.
Jute: a plant-based material commonly used for bondage rope, and a popular choice for Shibari work.
Kajira: the term for a female slave in John Norman’s Gor novels. Adopted by some people who have adopted the Master/slave dynamic. See also, Gorean.
Kama Sutra/Kamasutra: an ancient Hindu text dealing with human sexuality and principles of pleasure, most popularly known in the Western world for the section on specific sexual positions, though only about 20% of the original text deals with sexual positions. Also, a popular brand of sensuality and intimacy products.
Kegel Exerciser: a device intended to help exercise and strengthen the muscles of the pelvic floor. See Ben Wa Balls.
Kegel Exercises/Kegels: refers to repetitive contractions of the pelvic muscles one would use to control the flow of urine. This can strengthen the pelvic floor and prevent or improve incontinence. Can also increase responsiveness during intercourse.
Key Party: an old-school type of swingers party or wife-swappers party that involved putting keys into a bowl that would then be drawn out to determine who would partner with whom.
Kinbaku: a Japanese style of rope bondage that involves tying a person up in simple, yet visually intricate patterns. Translates to “tight binding.” See also, Shibari.
Kinging: a sex act in which a man sits on a consenting partner’s face, either to allow or force oral sex.
Kink: the use of unconventional sexual practices, concepts or fantasies. The term derives from the idea of a "bend" in one's sexual behavior, contrasted with "straight" or "vanilla" sexual behavior, mores and proclivities. Also the name of a porn company that produces largely BDSM related content.
Kinkster: a person who engages in kink either as a lifestyle or as a pastime.
Kitten Play: sexual play in which a person acts and/or dresses like a kitten. See Pet Play.
Knife Play: a form of edge play involving knives, daggers, and swords as a source of physical and mental stimulation. Knives are typically used to cut away clothing, scratch the skin, remove wax after wax play, or simply provide sensual stimulation. See also, Cutting, Blood Play, and Sensation Play.
Knismolagnia: achieving sexual arousal from tickling.
Kundalini: in Yoga and Hinduism, a primal energy said to be located at the base of the spine, and the source of sexual energy.
Labia: a part of the outer structure of female genitalia. Labia majora refers to the outer lips of the vulva, labia minora refers to the inner lips.
Lactation fetish: a fetish for lactating women, often in the context of an ANR.
Lady-boner: slang that refers to female arousal. Is most commonly used with a sexual connotation but can also refer to excitement about everyday things.
Latex: a material, both naturally occurring and synthetically produced, commonly used in fetish clothing construction. Also, often fetishized in and of itself. Also, a common material for condoms. Be careful when using latex condoms with a partner, as many people are allergic to latex.
Leather: a material, largely derived from animals, but also readily available in synthetic variants, commonly used in clothing and implements designed for use in BDSM. Often fetishized in and of itself. Also denotes a traditional style of BDSM practice and community organization.
Leather Family: a chosen family, tribal or communal in nature, with multiple members who have clearly defined roles and living arrangements. Usually there are guiding rules, order, and protocol, though each individual family is different.
Lesbian: The sexuality of a female identified person sexually and/or romantically attracted to other female identified persons.
Licking: using the tongue to stroke persons or objects. Often a submissive behavior as in pet play or boot licking. Also, a sensual practice.
Lifestyle: in this context, refers to kink, BDSM, or sexual practices that go beyond activities into the way a person lives. An example would be 24/7 TPE.
Lingam: a penis or phallic object worshipped as a representative of the god Siva. Translates as “shaft of light.”
Little: blanket term for an adult person who enjoys acting/feeling smaller or younger than they are. May or may not include age play. May or may not be sexual in nature. Usually includes youthful behavior to varying degrees. Can also be a specific degree of youthful play, usually 2-4 years old when combined with age play, and when compared with “bigs” and “middles.” See Big, and Middle.
Little Space: may refer to a state of age regression in a person who identifies as little. Can also simply be the mental state of a person while they are engaging in little play or age play.
Low Protocol: as opposed to high protocol, relatively relaxed and less formal while still having rules and/or procedures that a leather family or people in a power exchange relationship must follow. See also, Protocol.
Lube/Lubricant: liquids and gels designed to assist in sexual activity where wetness is helpful, including masturbation and penetrative sex. Might augment or substitute naturally occurring bodily fluid. Primary types are water-based, silicone, oil-based and hybrid. The type used depends on the desired sexual activity. Many condoms also come pre-lubricated.
Macrophile: a fetish for giantism. Often includes a fantasy of being very small and/or trampled by a very large person.
Magic Wand: a classic type of vibrator with a large handle, a tennis ball shaped head on a flexible neck, and deep rumbling vibrations. Usually features two speeds, high and low. Often used for orgasm control play and orgasm training play, as well as sensual massage. Suitable for any anatomy.
Making Love: a euphemism for sexual intercourse. Implies a certain degree of romance or being gentle.
Male: anyone who identifies as such. In binary and normative societies there are often rigid associations and definitions for what “qualifies” a person as male, usually having to do with genitalia and expectations around behavior and appearance. These are social constructs, not facts.
Man in the Boat: slang for clitoris, due to the appearance of the glans and its location on the vulva.
Marriage: the legal or formal union of two people as partners. Historically arbitrarily restricted to a partnership between a man and a woman, but now has been expanded in many places to include partnerships between couples of any gender.
Masculine: displaying traits traditionally perceived as male.
Mask: any device or material used to cover the eyes or face.
Masochism: sexual arousal and gratification achieved through receiving pain. Masochists often pair with Sadists.
Massage: Can be platonic, sensual, or erotic, depending the relationship between the recipient and the masseur and the areas of the body massaged. Sensual massage is a common form of foreplay. See also, Bondassage.
Massage Table: a common piece of dungeon furniture used to lay a person out.
Master: one half of the M/s dynamic, Masters often “own” slaves or submissives. Can also be a term of endearment or respect from an s-type to a D-type, or an honorific bestowed on a leader of a leather family. Usually refers to a male identified person.
Masturbator: a device used to stimulate the penis into erection and orgasm. Can be as simple as a silicone sleeve that fits over the penis, or as complicated as a fully automated tube into which the penis is inserted. Also, a term for a person who masturbates.
Masturbation: The physical manipulation of one’s own body for the purpose of arousal and often orgasm.
Medical Play: sexual fantasy play in which the participants pretend to be doctors and patients, can be as specific as a patient visiting a gynecologist or as vague as using medical implements in sexual play. Often includes accoutrements to assist in realizing the fantasy, like real medical equipment and furniture, or industrial type sex toys like wartenberg wheels and spreaders.
Menarche: the first occurrence of menstruation.
Menopause: often called “the change,” refers to a natural decline in reproductive hormones during a woman’s 40s or 50s. Usually associated with hot flashes, sleep disturbances, vaginal dryness, changes in mood and ceasing menstruation.
Menstrual Cycle: refers to the physiological process, usually monthly, that includes ovulation and menstruation.
Menstruation: the process in a woman of discharging blood and other materials from the lining of the uterus at intervals of about one lunar month from puberty until menopause, except during pregnancy.
Mental Bondage: the practice of a D/type controlling the behavior of an s/type through purely mental and psychological means. Rather than physically restraining a person, the D-type might simply tell them to stay put.
Middle: one degree of the “little” identity, Middles are adults who identify as or play at being adolescents or older aged children. See also, Big.
Missionary: a sexual position in which one partner lays on top of the other and penetrates them while facing each other.
Mistress: one half of the M/s dynamic, Mistresses often “own” slaves or submissives. Can also be a term of endearment or respect from an s-type to a D-type or an honorific for a leader in a leather family. Usually refers to a female identified person.
Mommy: term for a female identified or feminine caretaker type. See Caretaker.
Monogamish: coined by Dan Savage, a term that denotes a monogamous couple who have a negotiated agreement to engage in sexual activity with others.
Monogamy: an agreement of exclusivity between a couple or poly group. Can be negotiated to include sexual activity with other partners if terms are clear and all parties agree that it fits within their conception of exclusivity. In normative culture, monogamy is often an assumed feature of couple-hood or marriage.
Monster Porn: a category within the Hentai genre which eroticizes monsters. Often features large male monsters having sex with small humanoid females.
M/s: Denotes the Master and slave relationship dynamic.
Mucous Membrane: selectively permeable barriers that line the various cavities of the body and serve to prevent dirt and pathogens from entering the body. Are continuous with the skin at various bodily openings, like the eyes, mouth, nose, ears, vagina, anus, and urethral openings.
Mummification: the practice of using latex or other material, sleepsacks, or vacuum beds to completely immobilize someone.
Needle Play: a form of edge play involving piercing the skin with needles. Can be decorative or ritualistic. Often includes blood play due to the nature of the practice.
Negotiation: the practice of openly and honestly communicating needs, desires, fantasies, hard and soft limits, boundaries, rules and expectations before embarking on a new relationship, a change in relationship or before engaging in sexual activity. Can be as informal as a conversation, or as formal as a signed contract. Can occur moments before a scene, or far in advance. Serves to aide in clear communication, and to assure informed consent between all parties involved.
Nipple Clamps: clamps used on the nipple to create varying degrees of sensation. These come in many different styles, including barrel, tweezer, alligator, vise, and vibrating.
Nipplegasm: when orgasm is achieved through or assisted by stimulation of the nipple.
Nipple Play: any play involving stimulating the nipples. Ranges from clamping to torture to ANRs.
Nipples: the protuberance of a breast that, in females, can deliver milk via lactation ducts. Can be sensitive to stimulation for both males and females and is a common erogenous zone. See Nipplegasm.
Nipple Suckers: a nipple stimulating device that uses suction to create sensation.
Non-binary: A catch-all category for gender identities that are not exclusively masculine or feminine—identities which are outside the gender binary and cisnormativity. Non-binary people may express a combination of masculinity and femininity, or neither, in their gender expression. See also, Genderqueer.
Normative: a word or suffix used to denote beliefs and behaviors that promote majority or dominant cultural and social groups as the preferred or priority cultural and social groups.
Nylon: a common synthetic material for bondage rope. Due to having a relatively smooth surface, this rope is often used when ease of removal and ease of cleaning is important. It is also usually the cheapest option.
Nyotaimori: the practice of eating sushi off of a naked body. See also, Human Furniture and Food Play.
Objectophilia: or Object Sexuality, is a form of sexuality focused on particular inanimate objects. Individuals with this preference may have strong feelings of attraction, love, and commitment to certain items or structures of their fixation. For some, sexual or even close emotional relationships with humans are incomprehensible. Some object-sexual individuals also often believe in animism, and sense reciprocation based on the belief that objects have souls, intelligence, and feelings, and are able to communicate.
Oil-based Lubricant: Oil-based lubricants usually have the benefit of being very slick and naturally derived. Just don’t use oil-based anything in combination with latex, particularly latex condoms.
Obscenity: language, behavior, or images that are considered offensive or indecent according to prevailing social norms. Pornography and erotica are often considered obscene according to moral majorities and normative society. That’s why obscenity is so much fucking fun!
One-Night Stand: a casual sexual encounter where the participants don’t intend to see each other again.
Oral Sex: using the mouth to stimulate the genitals or anus. See also, Blow-job, Cunnilingus, and Analingus.
Orgasm: the sudden discharge of accumulated sexual excitement during the sexual response cycle, resulting in rhythmic muscular contractions in the pelvic region characterized by sexual pleasure. Orgasms are controlled by the involuntary or autonomic nervous system.
Orgasm Control: a sexual activity in which one person exerts control over when another person experiences climax and how often. Might include edging or orgasm denial. Might include genitorture or orgasm to the point of overwhelm.
Orgasm Denial: a form of orgasm control, the practice of one person not allowing another to achieve climax. Might include edging or mental and/or physical bondage.
Orgasm Training: the practice of training a person to orgasm, often a submissive, and often on command. Can also refer to training the body to be better able to orgasm.
Orgy: sexual activity, oftentimes an organized event, which occurs between four or more people at the same time.
Osmolality: in a sexual context, refers to a quality of lubricants that is important to consider. Higher Osmolality or Hyper-osmotic lubricants can irritate the skin, causing the barrier layer of skin to be damaged and dehydrated and leaving a mucous membrane (anal or vaginal) more susceptible to bacterial infections or STI contraction. Lower Osmolality or hypo-osmotic lubricants pull water from the lubricant into the cell. This means that a slightly hypo-osmotic lubricant would rehydrate dry tissues, but an extremely hypo-osmotic lubricant could cause these cells to burst. Iso-osmotic lubricants match the osmolality of the tissues to which it is applied. Iso is preferred for anal lubricants and slightly hypo or iso is preferred for vaginal lubricants. Hyper-osmotic lubes should be avoided.
Ovary: the part of the internal female reproductive system responsible for release of the ovum.
Ovulation: the process of ova leaving the ovary in preparation for potential fertilization.
Ovum: also called eggs, the bearers of female genetic material that have the potential to combine with spermatozoa and possibly become offspring.
Owner: a D-type person who owns or is interested in owning s-types, usually slaves or pets. Ownership usually denotes complete control over the s-type, but also responsibility for the well-being of the s-type.
Oxytocin: sometimes called the love hormone, or cuddle hormone, oxytocin plays a role in sexual reproduction, social bonding and during and after childbirth. Also linked to orgasm, pair bonding, social recognition, fear and anxiety regulation and maternal behaviors.
Packing: the practice of wearing a prosthetic penis, can be sexual in nature or a means of combatting gender dysphoria for trans men.
Paddling: using a tool with a handle and a flat surface, called a paddle, to strike a consenting person.
Pansexual: a sexual identity that experiences romantic and/or sexual attraction to people regardless of sex or gender identity.
Paraphilia: atypical or non-normative sexual interests or sources of arousal. Previously considered a disorder, paraphilia is now used to describe unusual sexual interest, while a disordered sexual interest is now called a paraphilic disorder.
Paraphilic Disorder: an atypical or non-normative sexual interest or source of arousal that is psychologically or physically harmful or damaging to the person. These disorders are listed in the DSMV.
Partialism: sexual attraction to a specific body part; hands, feet, calves, buttocks, etc.
Pedophilia: a fetish for sexual contact with children. A pedophilic fantasy can be enacted between consenting adults, as in age play, but any actual sexual contact between an adult and a child is automatically non-consensual and therefore assault.
Pegging: a sexual activity which typically involves a female using a strap-on to have penetrative sex, usually anal with a male.
Penetration: when one thing goes inside another, as a penis in an anus, a penis in a vagina, a dildo in an anus or vagina, and so on.
Penis: the genitalia of those most often assigned male at birth. Consists mostly of erectile tissue and is used for transfer of sperm, elimination of urine, and sexual activity. The structure of the penis includes the shaft which anchors inside the body and culminates in the glans, or head, of the penis. When aroused the penis engorges and becomes erect. See also, Erection and Erectile Dysfunction.
Penis Extender: a sleeve that fits over the penis in order for the wearer to have a larger penetrating tool. Some extenders are held in place with a strap-on harness. Often realistic on the outside and textured on the inside for the pleasure of the wearer.
Penis Plug: a sex toy that is inserted into the urethra of a penis to achieve arousal. Often a precursor to urethral sounding.
Penis Pump/Enlarger: an assistive device for those with erectile dysfunction used to achieve and maintain erection. Also used to change the size of the penis, though the efficacy of this is debatable.
Period: See Menstruation.
Pet Play: a form of sexual or non-sexual play in which people enjoy feeling, acting and/or looking like animals. Often specific domesticated animals like puppies, kittens, and ponies. There is usually an element of dress up included, like wearing ears/tails/paws. Can be combined with little play, and/or primal prey/predator play.
PH: refers to the acidity or baseness of any solution. In lubricants it is important to note the PH in order to determine whether the product is appropriate for vaginal or anal use. Vaginal pH usually falls between 3.8 and 4.5. Anal pH averages 6.7.
Phallic: relating to, or resembling a phallus, or erect penis.
Phallus: an erect penis, or the representation of an erect penis. Typically symbolizes fertility or potency.
Phone Sex: typically using dirty talk to achieve arousal over the phone. Often includes a degree of role play, but can consist of anything the participants find erotic. See also, Ignore Line.
Piercing Play: a form of edge play similar to needle play, play piercing involves piercing the skin. Can include the use of piercing jewelry or more intense items like suspension hooks. Also includes elements of blood play due to the nature of piercing flesh.
Platonic: intimate and/or affectionate friendship or love that is not sexual in nature.
Play: a common term in BDSM and kink culture used to denote any activity that is sexual, sensual, erotic, or relates to BDSM or kink practices. The only thing that really separates the word play from the word activity is the tendency for play to be used to refer to specific types of activity, and the prevalence of the term play in BDSM and kink communities. It’s how we keep fucking fun.
Play Space: any area, though often a dungeon, that has been set up specifically for BDSM and kink activities. Often has safer sex supplies, and BDSM implements and furniture available for use.
Pleasure: a feeling of satisfaction or enjoyment that can be emotional or physical. May refer to a feeling of happiness, or physical sensations that are enjoyable.
Plushy: a person who has a fetish for stuffed animals or people dressed like stuffed animals.
Polyamorous: a sexual and relational attachment style in which a person either has the capacity to love multiple people at once or has a committed relationship with multiple people at the same time. The counterpart to monogamous attachment style.
Poly Family: a chosen family based on polyamory in which the members may have romantic and intimate relationships.
Poly Triad: A polyamorous threesome in which all three are involved in a committed relationship with each other.
Pony Play: sexual or non-sexual animal play in which a person behaves like and/or attempts to look like a pony. Usually involves elements of costume, like the use of bits, blinders, pony masks, hoof-shaped hand and foot covers, etc. Might include training or “breaking” scenarios, grooming, and/or work like cart pulling.
Porn Addiction: see Sex Addiction.
Porn(ography): media created for the purpose of sexual stimulation. Differs from erotica in that it may or may not have artistic value or content.
Power Exchange: a relationship style or type of play in which control over one person’s behavior, life choices, and/or movements is consensually granted to another person. Is usually a part of D/s type relationships. See also, TPE.
Predator: in the kink and BDSM context, this refers to the D-type of primal play. This is a person who engages in aggressive animalistic behavior. Usually involves some element of the take-down, or hunter and hunted play. In kink or vanilla contexts, this word can also refer to a person who takes advantage of, manipulates, or harms other people in pursuit of their own sexual interests. (Be the first one, it’s more fun)
Predicament Bondage: a style of bondage in which the bound person is not immobilized, but instead, put in a dynamically awkward or uncomfortable position. An example would be a partial suspension position in which the person is required to balance on tip toe.
Pregnancy: simply put, when a baby is in the process of development in the uterus.
Pregnancy fetish: sexual arousal from the sight of or sexual activity with pregnant women.
Prey: the s-type of primal play, a person who engages in submissive animalistic behavior. Usually dominated or “hunted” by the aggressive Predator type.
Primal: refers either to a type of play that involves predator and prey or to primal-style human behavior like piercing, branding, tattooing, hook suspension etc. The latter attempts to access the more animalistic side of being human, but does not try to embody animal behavior, while the former often engages in animalistic behavior. See Predator and Prey.
Privilege: in the context of social justice, and gender and sexual equality, this refers to the state of some people or groups having special rights, advantages or immunities over others due to factors like race, gender, or sexuality. It is important to note one’s own privilege in order to better understand one’s own bias and in order to be a better ally by better understanding power imbalances. It is also important to note that even though a person might be underprivileged in some regard, that doesn’t negate their privilege in other areas. For example: a poor, cisgender, hetero, white woman has the disadvantage of being poor and female in a culture that disempowers those groups, but still has the advantage of being white, cis, and hetero in a culture where those qualities confer power.
Pro-Dom/Domme: a type of sex work in which a Dominant dominates for pay. Pro-Dommes (female identified Dominants) are most common and are also known as Dominatrixes.
Promiscuity: the quality of having many transient sexual relationships. In vanilla society, this is often seen as a negative. The person is seen as somehow having a lack of self-respect, being unsafe, or being indiscriminate, and these things are not necessarily true. There is also a distinct gender bias against women in this regard.
Pronouns: she/her, he/him, they/them, it and so on. The words used to identify people and things that, due to the nature of the English language, are often automatically gendered. This has become an important issue in gender politics, since in the past pronouns have generally been assigned at birth with gender, but people are now claiming the right to choose their own pronouns. It is a matter of simple respect to refer to someone using their chosen pronouns.
Prostate: a walnut-sized gland located between the bladder and the interior structure of the penis, just in front of the rectum. Can by stimulated or massaged to intensify and generate orgasms.
Protocol: the set of rules and/or rituals that govern the behavior of a community, family or relationship. Prevalent in power exchange relationships and leather communities.
P-spot: the male counterpart to the G-spot, refers to the prostate in the context of sexual stimulation.
Puberty: the period during which adolescents reach sexual maturity and become capable of reproduction.
Public Humiliation: See Humiliation.
Punching: the sexual practice of using the fist to strike a consenting partner. Creates a deep, thuddy sensation in the muscle tissue and is often used to intentionally cause bruising.
Punishment: in BDSM, the negative consequences delivered by a D-type to an s-type in response to an undesirable or disallowed behavior. Can be used in combination with reward and discipline to achieve the behavioral training of slaves or other submissives. Can also be used playfully when the submissive actually wants the punishment. See Funishment.
Puppy Play: sexual play that involves acting and/or dressing like a puppy. See Pet Play.
Pussy: a slang term for vagina.
Pussy Worship: a sexual activity in which one person worships another person’s vagina. Might include massage, washing, oral or other forms of paying close attention to or servicing the vagina.
PVC: also called vinyl, a shiny, plastic-coated fabric commonly used in fetish clothing construction.
Queening: a sex act in which a woman sits on a consenting partner’s face, either to allow or force oral sex.
Queer: denoting or relating to a sexual or gender identity that does not correspond to established ideas of sexuality and gender, especially heterosexual norms.
Quirt: essentially a very short whip, with two wide pieces of leather at the end that make a loud crack when it strikes a person or object.
Rabbit vibrator: a motorized sex toy designed to provide internal and external stimulation at the same time. Intended for vulvas, rabbits consist of an insertable portion that vibrates/ rotates/ thrusts and an external clitoral stimulator. The first rabbits got their name from having two-part clitoral stimulators that look like rabbit ears. Now, these toys come in all manner of shapes, though the principle is the same.
Race Play: A form of sexual roleplay in which the players act out racially-charged situations, such as interracial slave-master relationships.
RACK: An acronym for Risk Aware Consensual Kink.
Rape: Non-consensual intercourse.
Rape Play: sexual activity in which the consenting participants pretend that someone is being raped. See also, Consensual Non-consent.
Real Doll: a trademarked brand of highly realistic, customizable, and expensive, life-sized sex dolls.
Realistic: in this context, usually refers to the texture and appearance of a sex toy. Might refer to a dildo that looks and feels like a penis, a stroker that looks and feels like a vagina, or a sex doll that looks and feel like a person.
Rectum: the final section of the large intestine, terminating at the anus.
Relationship: the connection between two or more people, or how two or more people regard or interact with each other.
Relationship Dynamics: the balance of power or control that exists in all relationships. In kink and bdsm communities, this balance is often intentionally defined and enacted in the context of a consensual agreement. A prime example is the Dominant/Submissive dynamic.
Restraints: in the BDSM context, anything used to bind a person. Can range from light and easily escaped binding, to extreme immobilization, and can be nearly any material.
Reverse Cowgirl/Boy: a sexual position in which the penetrator lies on their back and the penetrated rides on top facing away from their partner.
Rhythm Method: a highly ineffective form of birth control which restricts intercourse to times in the menstrual cycle when ovulation is least likely to occur.
Riding Crop: see Crop.
Risk Aware Consensual Kink: a set of priorities in kink that emphasize awareness of the risks inherent in kink practices. Is not necessarily concerned with safety or sanity, like SSC, but focuses on risk management and consent. See RACK.
Role Play: essentially, adults playing pretend for sexual purposes. Examples would be playing doctor and patient, cop and robber, babysitter and parent and so on. Can also describe power exchange relationships that are limited to sexual play only and do not enter into daily life. Another confusing term for the kinky D&D player since they are also “role players”.
Rope Bunny: a person who spends a great deal of time bottoming for rope scenes. Rope might be the person’s primary kink.
Rope Play: any sexual play involving rope. This would include Shibari or Kinbaku, suspension, and basic rough and ready bondage.
Rough Sex: consensual sexual activity that is characterized by elements of violence. Usually more intense than “normal” intercourse and less focused on sensuality.
Rubber: a common material, available in natural and synthetic versions, used in fetish clothing. Also called latex.
Rule 34: an aphorism that says if it exists, there is a porn version of it, or there will be soon. The only exception to Rule 34 is Rule 34.
Sadism: achieving sexual arousal or gratification through witnessing or causing pain in others. Often a BDSM relationship dynamic, when paired with Masochism.
Safe(r) Sex: any practice that mitigates the potential risk of STI transmission associated with sexual activity. The most effective methods are barrier methods like male condoms, female condoms, and dental dams.
Safe, Sane & Consensual: or SSC, a set of priorities in kink that emphasize safety, clear decision making and consent culture.
Safe Word: a word chosen for use in a kink or BDSM scene to stop play. This ensures that there is a clear and unequivocal way to stop activity, even if words like “no” or “stop” are part of the play. Red is a common choice for a full-stop safe word. Yellow can be used to slow or adjust play, but not stop the scene completely. A house safe word is often “safe word.”
Safeword: a 12-step recovery group for kinky people. The founding group currently meets at the Citadel in San Francisco.
Saint Andrew’s Cross: a common piece of dungeon furniture that has the appearance of a large X. A person is then usually bound to the four points of the X in a spread-leg standing position. Can be used face forward or face down.
Salad Tossing: a slang term for analingus.
Santorum: a term, coined by Dan Savage, for the frothy mixture of lubricant and feces that is sometimes the aftermath of anal sex. Named after Rick Santorum.
Sapiosexual: a person who is attracted to, or aroused by, intelligence.
Scat Play: any play that involves feces.
Scene: a common term in BDSM for a sexual interaction, or activity that is negotiated, agreed upon, or defined prior to its start. Usually has a definite scope with a beginning and an end.
Scissoring: the sexual practice of two people rubbing their vulvas together. Commonly mentioned in popular culture.
Scrotum: a pouch of skin that contains the testicles.
Semen: also called seminal fluid, this is male reproductive fluid that contains spermatozoa in suspension. The fluid nourishes the spermatozoa and keeps them motile.
Sensation Play: any play that uses and/or focuses on physical sensation to achieve arousal. Sensations can fall anywhere on the spectrum from sensual to torturous. Massage, tickling, electro play and impact play are a few examples.
Sensory Deprivation: depriving a person of all or some of their senses in order to heighten sexual arousal through focus. If a person cannot hear or see, they will be that much more focused on physical feelings.
Sensuality: pleasure and arousal achieved through stimulation of the senses. Often there is specific focus on physical feeling, tastes, smells, sounds, or visual stimuli. Could also be considered mindful sexuality since the focus is often on being in the moment with sensation.
Service: the usually submissive activity of providing service in any manner. This could be house cleaning, cooking, bringing drinks, holding jackets, acting as furniture, acting as an ash tray, going to work to earn money, book-keeping, boot-blacking, performing sexual service and so on. Many submissives are aroused by acts of service even if the acts themselves are not commonly considered sexual.
Service Top: a person who enjoys being a Top as a service to bottoms. This person can be a switch or a devoted service Top.
Sex: often used to refer to penetrative intercourse but can also be used to denote any activity that arouses, stimulates, or achieves sexual gratification.
Sex Addiction: the controversial concept that people can become inescapably obsessed with sexual activity to such a degree that it becomes damaging to self, society or others, though, there is very little evidence that sexual addiction exists. It seems that sex addiction might often be cases of mis-managed or misunderstood paraphilias, fetishes, or libidos. In a sex-repressive society, it is difficult to determine where healthy sexuality that has been shamed and repressed and unhealthy sexual behavior part ways. If expressions of your sexuality make you feel good and do no harm, then have at it! Though, as with any other addiction, you are an addict if you believe you are, and there is always help should you decide you need it.
Sex Doll: a doll, usually life-sized, designed specifically for sexual activity. Can also refer to a consenting person used for sexual activity as though they were a doll.
Sex Positive: social and cultural concepts, terms, attitudes and behaviors that promote human sexuality and expressions of sexuality as positive and healthy. Often includes attempts to dismantle current systems of sexual repression and shaming.
Sex Swing: a common piece of dungeon furniture usually consisting of a standing frame and a hanging leather or nylon seat portion. The seat can also hang from a ceiling hook or beam. It allows one person to relax in a reclined position and also remain elevated enough for a standing person to work on them.
Sexting: flirtatious and sexual content in text messages used to create arousal. Can include a degree of role play.
Sex Toys: any objects designed or used for sexual stimulation. Can include, but isn’t limited to, vibrating, insertable and sensation toys. The term “toy” denotes fun, so have fun!
Sexual Activity: any erotic, sensual, or sexual thing that a person or group does. See also, Play.
Sexual Arousal: see Arousal.
Sexual Gratification: see Gratification.
Sexuality: the sexual identity, preferences and/or practices of a person or people.
Sexual Orientation: a person’s sexual identity as it relates to the gender to which they are attracted, as in being heterosexual, homosexual, etc.
Sexual Practice: similar to sexual activity or play, but often denotes some level of skill required or some regularity or frequency to the activity.
Sexual Spectrum: the concept that sexuality is not just gay/straight, either/or but consists of many identities that fall along a spectrum.
Sex Work(er): engaging in sexual activity as a profession. This can include anything from performing in pornographic or erotic media, to providing domination services, to having penetrative sex with paying clients. Despite being known as the world’s “oldest profession,” sex workers often still have difficulty negotiating respect and fair treatment in sex-repressive societies.
Shibari: a common word in the West used for the traditional Japanese bondage arts. Translates as “to tie decoratively.” The formal Japanese word is Kinbaku, but Shibari is often used in its place.
Shunga: a style of Japanese erotic art, typically wood block prints that depict all manner of sensual pleasures, from the tender to the explicit. Translates literally as “spring pictures.”
Signal Whip: a type of whip that has a flexible body and no handle. The cracker, the final tip that makes the cracking sound, of the whip attaches directly to the body of the whip. The flexibility allows it to be curled up small enough to fit into a bag or pocket. See also, Snake Whip.
Silicone: a class of synthetic materials commonly used in sex toy construction and in sex lubricant. Silicone is body-safe, smooth to the touch, resistant to chemical attack, insensitive to temperature change and long lasting, so it is a very popular choice. Silicone will, however, break itself down so silicone toys should not be stored with other silicone toys and silicone toys cannot be used with silicone lubricants.
Silicone Lubricant: is thicker and does not soak into the skin, therefore lasts much longer than water or oil-based lubes and does not usually need reapplication. This is particularly useful for anal sex. The downside of silicone lubricant is that it cannot be used with silicone toys and it is a bit more difficult to clean up.
Silk: a common natural material for bondage rope because it is very smooth against the skin. Silk sheets, clothing, and other fabric items like blindfolds and ties are also considered very sensual.
Single-Tail: refers to a class of whip with a handle and one tail. See Bull Whip and Signal Whip.
Slapper: a short paddle-like tool, usually with two to three layers of leather that create a loud crack when it strikes a person or object. May also refer to a crop-like tool with a wide, flat, leather tip.
Slapping: a form of impact play where the palm of an open hand is used to strike a consenting partner. Usually refers to the practice of face slapping, but can also include other parts of the body like the thighs, feet, etc. When referring to the ass, it is usually called spanking.
Slave: one half of the M/s dynamic, a slave is someone who has consented to be owned and controlled by a Master or Owner. This dynamic often focuses on elements of service and protocol and can be enacted strictly in the context of a sexual encounter or as a lifestyle.
Sleepsack: a full body sack, similar to a sleeping bag, that is used to confine and immobilize a person. Often zips up to neck and includes a collar at the top. Can also include triple zippers that allow access to any part of the body while keeping the person contained, and internal arm sleeves or binders that prevent a person from touching themselves.
Slut: a derogatory term for a promiscuous person, usually a woman due to sexual double-standards between the genders. The term has recently been reclaimed as a part of sex-positive dismantling of repressive social constructs. See Ethical Slut.
Slut Shaming: attempts to make a person feel ashamed of perceived promiscuity.
Smut: slang for sexual content in media; literature, film, magazines, etc. Literally defined as a small piece of dirt or soot, so there’s the connotation.
Snake Whip: similar to a signal whip, but there is a fall, or length of material, between the body of the whip and the cracker.
Snowballing: the act of one person spitting seminal fluid into another person’s mouth after oral sex has been performed to climax. A person can transfer cum back the person who came, or transfer it to a third party.
Soft-core: pornography or other media that shows nudity and sexual acts but does not actually show genitals or penetration.
Soft Limit: a boundary outlined during the course of scene or relationship negotiation that is flexible. A person might have a soft limit for something they don’t particularly enjoy, but they are willing to do if their partner enjoys it.
Sounding: see Urethral Sounding.
Spanking: the sexual practice of using the hand or tools to strike a consenting person on the ass.
Speculum: a gynecological tool commonly used in medical play. It is inserted into the anus or vagina and serves to spread a person open either for visual effect or for the purpose of inserting other objects.
Spermatozoa: also called sperm, the motile male reproductive cell that fertilizes the ovum and bears the male genetic material.
Spermicide: a kind of birth control that uses chemicals to stop sperm from reaching the egg. Most effective if used with another method, like condoms.
Spider Gag: a strict gag that features a ring which fits behind the teeth and “legs” that serve to force the mouth open. Gets its name for the visual similarity to a spider. Usually fastens at the back of the head.
Sploshing: also known as wet and messy fetishism, is a sexual practice in which arousal and gratification is achieved through the application of copious amounts of some substance to a person’s body, face and hair. The intention is to make a complete mess. Food is often used.
Spread-Eagle: a sexual position, often achieved through bondage, in which a person’s legs and arms are spread open side to side. Sometimes, just the legs are spread.
Spreaders: devices used to spread the legs apart during restraint. Spreader bars often include ankle and wrist restraints in order to force a consenting person into a particular position that will allow ease of access for sexual activity.
Squirting: The product of female ejaculation, an expulsion of liquid achieved on orgasm. See also, Gushing.
SSC: an acronym for Safe, Sane and Consensual.
STD: sexually transmitted disease.
STI: sexually transmitted infection. Usually includes diseases as well as other types of infection.
Stimulation: anything that raises levels of physiological or nervous system activity in the body.
Stingy: a word that describes a particular kind of sensation, usually a sharp, surface pain that “stings.” A common term in impact play.
Straight: colloquial term for heterosexual. Can also refer to anything that is perceived as normative or vanilla.
Strappado: in a sexual context, a type of restraint in which the arms are bound together behind the back and then used to slightly lift or destabilize a person. The name comes from a form of torture in which a person was usually lifted until the shoulders dislocated.
Strap-on: a sexual device that usually uses a hip harness combined with a dildo for penetrative sex. Usually used in the place of a penis for those that don’t have one but can also be used with a penis extender in place of a dildo for those who want to fuck with a larger penis than their own.
Stroker: a masturbatory device that is applied to the penis for sexual stimulation. See also, Masturbator.
S-type: a catch-all term for all kinds of submissive. Male/Female, slave, sub, baby, baby-girl/boy, girl, boy, little, prey etc.
Sub: short for submissive.
Sub Drop: when a submissive experiences a drop in mood or a depressive phase after a scene. Might occur immediately or some time afterward. Can be attributed to a crash after experiencing a rush of endorphins, or simply an emotional shift when a satisfying or happy period of time ends. Management of sub drop and extended aftercare are a common topic of conversation in sub communities. See also, Dom Drop.
Submissive: a consenting person who behaves in a submissive manner, either in the context of a sexual encounter or as a lifestyle. Some people enact submission as a meek, mild-mannered, or weak person in comparison to the Dominant, while others enact submission as a strong-willed or powerful person who gives control to their Dominant. Some people behave submissively towards all people, some toward all Dominants, and some toward only their own Dominant. There is also the “Brat” type that is playfully or seriously resistant and requires discipline and correction in order to reach a submissive state.
Sub Space: a phenomenon that occurs during a scene, particularly heavier or rougher scenes, when a submissive experiences a huge shift in sensation and perspective. Likely due to a rush of endorphins, many people report tingling, floating, or out of body sensations. Some people might even lose the ability to speak or communicate. This is why it is particularly important for tops to pay attention to a bottom’s body language and pain responses during a scene. A person might be so out of it that they can’t protect themselves. This is also why it is important to avoid upward negotiation during scenes.
Suspension: can refer to the rope arts and the practice of using rope to bind a person and lift them off the ground. Can also refer to the Primal practice of using sharp hooks pierced through the flesh to lift a person off the ground.
Swinging: the practice of people in committed or monogamish relationships trading partners for sexual activity. They can switch partners and engage in sexual activity privately, or it can be part of an orgy. See also, Orgy and Wife Swapping.
Switch: a person who enjoys being a top or a bottom.
Sybian: a brand-name masturbation device primarily designed for use by people with vulvas. It consists of a hollow saddle-like seat containing two powerful electric motors, motor speed controller boards, gearing, and pullies. A ridge on the top of the unit can be made to vibrate through a range of speeds as set using a wired external hand controller, and an upward pointing shaft set on an angle through the ridge can be made to rotate at speeds from zero rpm to several hundred rpm, again by use of the wired remote control. Flexible molded attachments are supplied which fit over the vibrating ridge and shaft which mostly have integrated dildoes on their top. In use, the rider places the dildo inside their body for internal stimulation while pressing their external erogenous parts on the vibrating ridge.
Taboo: a socially and/or culturally forbidden subject. In this context, a sexual activity or fantasy that is eroticized either because of or despite the fact that it is socially forbidden. Also, a common genre of porn.
Takate Kote: a traditional and common Shibari box tie, in which the hands are bound behind the back and the arms secured to the torso. Often adapted as a chest harness in suspension bondage.
Take-Down: a rough type of play where one consenting person tries to escape while the other attempts to forcibly subdue them. It might include elements of primal predator/prey play, or competative wrestling type play.
Temperature Play: any play that uses heat or cold to create sensation. The sensations in temperature play may be pleasurable, sensual, intense or painful.
TENS Unit: transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation unit, or TENS unit, is a device that sends small electrical currents to targeted body parts. These currents are used in the vanilla world to relieve pain. In a sexual context, electrical currents are used to arouse, stimulate, gratify, and torture. See Electro Play.
Tentacle Porn: a genre of Hentai in which an octopus, monster, demon or some other tentacled creature penetrates a human being with their tentacles. Rooted in 19th century Japanese erotic literature and Shunga prints.
Testicles: two oval shaped organs that are a part of the structure of male genitalia, and responsible for sperm production. They are contained within the scrotum and sit just behind the penis.
Threesome: any sexual activity involving three people. Includes any combination of genders and any relationship between participants.
Throat-Fucking: similar to face-fucking in that the pace and intensity are usually controlled by the penetrator. Implies greater depth, and most likely more gagging, than face-fucking.
Thuddy: a word that describes a particular kind of sensation, usually a deep, sometimes painful, muscular feeling that “thuds.” A common term in impact play. Can also refer to the sound of said impact.
Tickling: to touch lightly or prod a person in a sensitive area of the body in such a way that causes a sensation that is uncomfortable and akin to itching. Often makes the person laugh and squirm to get away. Can be affectionately playful or torturous. Common ticklish areas of the body are the bottoms of the feet, the armpits, the neck, the belly and the sides.
Tightlacing: see Corseting.
TK: stands for Takate Kote.
Tongue bath: the sensual practice of licking a person all over their body.
Top: the giver in BDSM activities regardless of usual relationships or roles. A Dominant can be a top, but a submissive might also “top” for another person for the purpose of demonstration or sexual activity.
Torture: usually refers to inflicting severe pain on a person, often as punishment, as a means of control, or for the pleasure of the person inflicting the pain. In the BDSM context, torture may refer to pain, but may also refer to subjecting a consenting person to discomfort, or pleasure to the point of overwhelm.
TPE: total power exchange, often used in combination with 24/7 to describe a consensual BDSM relationship dynamic in which one person holds the power of decision and direction at all times. People also practice TPE part-time, or as a bedroom-only activity.
Training: usually refers to the process or practice of one person molding another person’s behavior, actions, or personality, to their own standard. For example, a Master might train their slave to serve them in a specific way or to follow particular protocols.
Trampling: a sexual activity in which a submissive person becomes aroused by the thought or action of having a Dominant person or people walk over his or her body. The submissive's arousal usually results from a combination of pain and the element of humiliation. There is also a growing subgenre of pornography known as trampling porn which features this sexual activity.
Trans: see Transgender.
Transformation fetish: sexual arousal from depictions or descriptions of transformations, often from human to animal or object, but also from one gender to another.
Transgender: A person whose gender identity is different than the gender they were assigned at birth.
Transman: A transgender man, or a man who was assigned female at birth. see AFAB.
Transwoman: A transgender woman, or a woman who was assigned male at birth. see AMAB.
Trigger: sensitive subject matter that might cause a person to have a trauma reaction. For example, a graphic description of abuse might cause a person who has been abused to have a strong reaction, particularly if the difficult subject matter is unexpected.
Trigger Warning: a common courtesy used in social media, by news media, and in blog articles, to warn people that there is sensitive material involved that might trigger some people.
Twink: an attractive and young or young looking gay or bisexual man. Stereotypically slender and having a hairless body.
Uncut: refers to a penis that has not been circumcised.
Under Bed Restraints: restraint systems designed for ease of use, particularly for beginner bondage enthusiasts, that have four attachment points connected beneath the mattress. Usually used to hold someone in a prone or supine spread-eagle position.
Unicorn: broadly defined, a sexual partner that is unlikely to exist in reality. Hence the name that refers to a mythological creature. Commonly refers to a bisexual female interested in a casual relationship with a committed couple.
Uniform Fetish: sexual arousal from dressing or seeing others dressed in uniform. Firefighters, police, nurses etc.
Unprotected Sex: sexual activity that takes place without the use of birth control or STI preventatives like condoms. See Barebacking.
Upward Negotiation: the ill-advised practice of a person deciding, in the middle of a scene, to participate in something they had previously negotiated as a hard or soft limit or boundary. See Downward Negotiation.
Urethra: the duct by which urine is released from the body. In the anatomy of those with a penis, the urethra also carries semen. In the anatomy of those with a vulva, the urethral duct is separate from the vaginal opening and is located inside the labia minora and below the clitoris.
Urethral Sounding: a form of edge play in which a long, thin tube is very gently and very slowly inserted into the urethra of a penis. Requires specific tools made for sounding that cannot be substituted for anything else without facing a high likelihood of discomfort, pain, or damage. If done correctly, creates a unique and very pleasurable sensation. See Penis Plug.
Urolagnia/Urophilia: a fetish for urine or urination. See Golden Shower and Water Sports.
Uterus: also known as the womb, the internal organ of most people assigned female at birth in which offspring are conceived and gestated. Located in the lower abdomen and connected to the vagina via the cervix.
Vacuum Bed: a device for immobilizing a person that consists of a large latex envelope in a frame with a suction pump or floor vacuum. Person in the envelope, air sucked out, and voila!
Vagina: technically the muscular tube leading from the external female genitals, or vulva, to the cervix of the uterus. Vagina is often used colloquially to refer to the entire vulva.
Vaginal Dilators: usually a set of tube-shaped devices used to gradually stretch the vagina. Most commonly used in people with vaginismus to make penetrative intercourse more comfortable.
Vaginal Lubricant: can refer to the natural lubricant produced by the vagina when the person is aroused. May also refer to any lubricant made specifically for use in/on the vagina.
Vaginismus: involuntary contraction of muscles around the opening of the vagina in women with no abnormalities in the genital organs. The tight muscle contraction makes sexual intercourse or any sexual activity that involves penetration painful or impossible.
Vampire Play: sexual role-play in which people pretend to be vampires. May include Blood Play.
Vanilla: a common term used to describe non-kink and/or non-BDSM sexual activities or lifestyles. Though “vanilla” is often synonymous kink communities with plain, boring, or common, it is important to remember that Vanilla is also a flavor and it’s fucking delicious.
Venus of Willendorf: a small, female figurine estimated to have been made around 30,000 BCE. She’s all sexy hips, tits and belly and is likely to have been a fertility symbol.
Vibrator: any motorized sexual device which uses vibration for stimulation and gratification. Can be rechargeable, battery powered, or AC powered. They come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes and can be made for various purposes.
Violet Wand: an electro play device with which low-current, high-voltage electricity is applied to the body to create varying degrees of sensation. Can range from light and bubbly feeling to sharp and painful. There is also a whole host of attachments that can be used with this device to increase the variety of sensation.
Virginity: the highly debatable state of being a virgin, or of not having had sex yet. Usually refers to penetrative sex. Has historically been a very biased means of judging the “worth” of a woman in many cultures. Modern social mores are beginning to see the presence or absence of virginity as a strictly personal affair and not equivalent with any measure of value. See Hymen.
Voyeurism: sexual pleasure derived from watching others while they are naked or engaged in sexual activity. The practice of those who like to “watch.” Ethical voyeurism, like any other sexual activity requires consent.
VR Porn: a new genre of porn that uses Virtual Reality (VR) head sets to deliver high-quality, three-dimensional porn.
Vulva: the external sex organs of a person most commonly assigned female at birth. Includes the labia majora and minora, the mons pubis, and the glans clitoris. Often used in more formal or medical contexts. See also, Vagina.
Walk of Shame: a derogatory colloquialism for when a person walks home the day after going out at night. The implication is that the person had a one-night stand because they didn’t sleep at home. This term is usually used on women in order to perpetuate the fallacy that a woman should be ashamed of her sexuality.
Wand Vibrator: any vibrator that comes in an elongated shape that can be applied externally. Some smaller wand vibrators can also be used internally, but many feature a large handle with a tennis-ball shaped head. See Magic Wand.
Wartenberg Wheel: a medical device designed to test nerve reactions but used in BDSM for sensation play, medical play, and electro play. It consists of a metal handle with a small, spiked wheel on the end. The wheel is run over the surface of the skin and the degree of sensation is controlled by the amount of pressure applied.
Water-based Lubricant: multi-purpose and can be used with all sex toys and on all areas of the body. Water-based lubricants come in various formulas for various sexual activities, including different thicknesses and flavors.
Water Sports: another term for urolagnia, or sexual enjoyment derived from urination. See also, Golden Shower.
Wax Play: a form of edge play that uses melted wax to create sensation through temperature. Usually specific types of low-temperature candles are used that are safe for the body and won’t cause burns when applied directly to the skin.
Werewolf Play: sexual role-play in which people pretend to be werewolves. Can be primal in nature.
Whipping: the use of a whip to strike a consenting person. See Single Tail, Bull Whip, Flogger, Snake Whip, Signal Whip, Cat O’ Nine, Quirt, and Crop.
Wife Swapping: a less popular, gendered, term for swinging.
Wobbling H: a threesome sexual position in which a person is on all fours and engaged in both oral and penetrative sex at the same time.
Wrestling: an erotic or sexual activity in which people grapple with each other. Might result in sex or might be a part of primal play. Also, a genre of porn in which one person forces a consenting person to submit through grappling.
Yaoi: a genre of Japanese homoerotica in which males are involved in sexual and romantic relationships. Often created by women for women. Also known as boy’s love. See Bara.
Yiff: sexual activity or sexual material within the Furry subculture.