You’d be surprised just how sexy it is to hear someone say “no”.
“Do you want me to stop?” “No.”
Checking in during a scene can be vital, especially if you’re a hard player. Sometimes, though, it can seriously harsh a scene vibe if you get too talky. A simple “do you want me to stop?”, with an answer of “no”, at its core means “keep doing what you’re doing, at the intensity/escalation level you’re currently doing it.”
“Does that hurt too much?” “No.”
Beyond a simple question, this is a good one when you’re doing sustained pain — pressure points, pinching, squeezing, that sort of thing. If you put the right tone in your voice — a sort of teasing mixed with wonderment — you’ll sometimes get partners to take more than they think they can. If they push back on it or seem indignant, they’re either bratting you or (more likely) they want to say it hurts too much without actually saying those words.
“Do I need to keep spanking you/using that implement/doing that thing?” “No.”
This one makes it more about your wants and less about your partner’s. It’s good for when partners are being bratty or talking back (if that’s something you’ve negotiated as part of your dynamic). That’s the part of the scene where you do something they love to hate, and you keep asking, over and over, if you need to keep doing that thing. Sometimes it intensifies the scene; sometimes it gets both people laughing. And sometimes, depending upon your partner’s response, it might be exactly what you need to hear to slow or stop the scene and catch your (or their) breath.
“Do you want to play tonight?” “No.”
Being willing to hear “no” when you ask your partners if they want to play is sexy… for your partners. It means they trust you enough to be able to say “I don’t want to” and you to not get butthurt about it. The last thing you want is for someone to feel forced (unless CNC is agreed-upon beforehand). You want your partners to be comfortable with you; you want them to have the freedom to say “not tonight” without fearing that you’ll get angry, or resentful, or threaten never to play with them again if they don’t do it now. If your partners can say no to you, and not feel like there’s something wrong with that, it makes you more desirable to them because you can be trusted and depended upon to put their needs before yours.
The more often you’re willing to hear “no”, the better your partners will feel about the relationship when they say “yes”. And, sure, hearing your partners say “yes” or “more” or “now” or “harder” is definitely sexy, saying “no” is sexy too.
But more than just saying it is knowing you — or your partners — can say “no” whenever it’s necessary. It means the relationship (BDSM, sexual, play-partner, friendship, casual acquaintance, whatever) is built on a foundation of mutual trust and respect, which is the best place to start.
(This was originally published on my personal Fetlife account in 2017.)