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SSC has become a mantra of the "modern" BDSM community, if it is "safe", we can make it more mainsteam, people doing "safe" things with "sane" people.

Most people in the community preach SSC, but is that the best way for BDSM to be? What about RACK, the newer bastard step child of a phrase that only a few use currently?

"Safe", is all your equipment checked out and in full working order, is the person you are with experienced at what activities you are undertaking, has any chance of injury been eliminated?

"Sane", pretty subjective here, mainly does the person in control of the scene know what is real and what is not, what is possible and what is not, thinking you can do anything you have read about is definitely not sane, but there is a grey area.

"Consensual", are all parties willing participants, lets hope yes, even for rape play or other more extreme levels of play, consent is always a must. This is used in SSC and RACK, no play without consent.

"Risk-Aware", we know there are risks, we are aware of what they are and have discussed them, forewarned is forearmed.

"Kink", I think we all know what is kinky, though there might be degrees of what is kinky to one person vs. another.

The problem is that SSC implies that the activities we undertake are safe, which most times they are, but consider breath play, or other edge play, this is definitely not 100% safe. What about bondage, it is possible being bound could lead to injuries from bruises to something more serious. So is BDSM safe, not really, it can be reasonably safe, but nothing is for sure.

I prefer to consider myself RACK, there are risks, and I am aware of them and still choose to do what I do. With RACK, edge play is acceptable, as are a number of less than safe activities, this does not mean we will be totally unsafe, just that we discuss and understand the risks of what we undertake up front.

Each person has to choose their own level of play, but we need to be aware and know where our personal lines and limits are.

1 Mar 2006 12:00:00


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