Self-bondage

Self-bondage is the practice of sexual bondage on oneself, or the application of restraints to oneself for the purpose of sexual pleasure. Self-bondage is characterised by experimentation and ingenuity and has differs from conventional bondage in that it:

These added challenges and dangers heighten the appeal of self-bondage for many of its practitioners, who often take pride in devising highly-elaborate self-bondage schemes and release mechanisms (both in reality and in erotic fiction).

Risks of self-bondage

Self-bondage is considered a higher-risk activity than many other BDSM practices-particularly when combined with autoerotic asphyxia-and has led to many recorded deaths. It is estimated that there are 500 to 1,000 autoerotic fatalities each year in the United States, of which a substantial proportion involve asphixiation and drug use. The death in 1994 of Stephen Milligan, the British Conservative MP for Eastleigh, was a case of autoerotic asphyxiation combined with self-bondage, and rumours persist that it was also the cause of death of rock singer Michael Hutchence.

Self-bondage has all the risks of physical restraint and sexual bondage, with the added factor that should anything go wrong, there is no-one to effect a rescue. For example, if blood circulation cuts off sensation in limbs, the planned escape mechanism may not be usable.

Despite this, many practitioners insist that self-bondage can be performed relatively safely if it is conducted with a view to minimising risk. Common safety advice includes measures such as:

Strict versus sensual

A distinction can be made between strict and sensual self-bondage . In sensual self-bondage, escape from restraints is simple and available immediately, if desired. For example, the keys might be within reach or the knots loosely tied. The chief aim is the sensation of immobility and of constrained movement.

Strict self-bondage, by contrast, requires that the means of escape is unavailable for a period of time and the person must remain in bondage until the release mechanism is activated, regardless of whether or not they would voluntarily continue the scene further if they had the choice. Although strict self-bondage is potentially more hazardous, some practice it for the greater feeling of helplessness.

There is an alternative approach sometimes recommended which takes the middle ground, and achieves a compromise between safety and strictness. The method is to use a backup release mechanism that is available immediately, but carries with it some penalty or cost with its use. For example, keys could be placed in a bucket of paint. The person in self-bondage can escape quickly if necessary, such as a fire breaking out, or excessive numbness of limbs. However, the annoyance of cleaning up the paint afterwards would coerce the person into waiting for the main release mechanism to come into effect if they were merely bored or uncomfortable.

Release mechanisms

Many release mechanisms are used in self-bondage to allow the practitioner to escape the restraints after a period of time. There are various trade-offs to be made between ease of use, reliability, precision of timing, cost, and so forth. There should be several mechanisms available, thus ensuring redundancy and safety.

There are also a number of release mechanisms designed to be emergency backups. The idea behind these release mechanisms is that triggering them will cause something undesirable to happen, and thus are only used in situations where death or serious injury could occur otherwise.

Techniques

Apart from release mechanisms, self-bondage poses a somewhat awkward problem of getting into bondage, especially when using rope. What might be a relatively simple matter for couples can be considerably more complex alone.

With rope, the main difficulty is tying the hands in a way that is not easy to untie. One common solution is to use a cinch noose — essentially a kind of slip knot — together with a coil (a loop of rope). The wrists are placed through the coil with the cinch noose between the wrists and around the coil. To achieve a basic hogtie position, the cinch noose is tied to the ankles. With pressure, the noose tightens the wrist coil, securing the hands. It proves very difficult to escape from, and usually a knife or scissors is required to cut free.

Equipment that can be tightened only, and not loosened, often has application in self-bondage. This includes handcuffs, zip ties and ratcheting pulleys.

Commercial equipment

While for the most part self-bondage is performed using ordinary and easily available equipment (indeed, it lends itself to impromptu adaptation and a "do it yourself" approach), a few commercial products have appeared — in the United States and England for the most part — catering for the self-bondage practitioner.

See also

External links

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This article is based on "Self-bondage" from the free encyclopedia Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org). It is licensed under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation Licencse. In the Wikipedia you can find a list of the authors by visiting the following address: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Self-bondage&action=history