* Trigger Warning: explicit discussion on sex and sexuality

I sat down for tea with a local kinkster one afternoon, who had this to share with me:

“There are a lot of different side paths that are worth exploring”

What is kink to you?

From my perspective, kink is anything that someone does within a sexual context that is beyond the norm of mainstream. It doesn’t have to be sexual in nature, but maybe engage some of your sexual energy. Maybe physically turned on or mentally turned on. It can encompass so many different things but it is what is beyond mainstream accepted.

What got you into kink?

A lot of people can identify times in their childhood when they thought about sex in a different way. Ways that they weren’t taught about in their schools, with their peers, or their parents. Something sparked their interest that was a little bit different. There are a lot of people who identify with those ideas from an early age and are always trying to get involved with it. For me, it was a time in my life that I had been in a stable monogamous relationship and I was interested in exploring and trying some new things and some of them were based on ideas and experiences I had when I was younger and trying to understand myself sexually.

So you sought it out, it didn’t come to you?

There were always kinky elements. I had been doing threesomes for a number of years and enjoyed that. What sparked that was remembering back to those sexually exploring days, where those things didn’t really always matter and so you kind of experimented and thinking back to those thoughts.

Isn’t it nice to just explore and not subscribe to the whole finding someone, go on a date, date for a while and then you’re “boyfriend-girlfriend.” You ride that relationship escalator to that white picket fence and the family. There are a lot of different side paths along the way that are worth exploring.

How long have you been into kink?

I’ve been into threesomes and polyamory for seven years, and, actively into kink for about two years and a strong presence in the actual kink scene for the last year.

What is the kink scene in Peterborough like and what are your favourite things about it? There are a diversity of people. Single people, couples, and polyamorous people. All kinds of sexual and gender identities.

These people meet and talk about kink. A lot of us have curiosities and fantasies that we want to explore, but we don’t always know who else might be into it or where to learn about it. As a participant, I tend to identify more with the “Top” side of things, to be more dominant.
I also really love that there are all different body types that are a part of the kink scene. It’s refreshing and important to know that you don’t have to fit into society’s ideals of beauty and the limitations of that, but instead you are appreciated for being exactly who you are. One of the advantages about the kink scene is that people are also more open about their desires and are more willing to talk about it. Consent is very important within kink and people are more willing to sit down and negotiate freely about what they want rather than the guessing game that other people play.

What advice would you give to someone interested in venturing into the kink scene?

It’s important to know what you want specifically and to see how that works out with other people. Making a list of things that might be “yes”, “maybe” and “no’s” is a good place to start. Resources online can be helpful and also a fun exercise. Research first, then figure out what you want and get to know your limits. You don’t want to walk into a scene and not know what your limits are. Take a look at your own personal history. “What might be a trigger for me?” Make sure it’s consensual. That the people you are “playing” with agree to the same terms as you. Just be respectful of other people and other identities and other ways of expressing oneself.
Having conversations with the people you are engaging with about what some warning signs are and “safe words” are is extremely important. If you do want to explore this on your own or within a community, talking to people can be helpful and you can learn a lot. If you choose to enter the kink scene, once you start to engage with other people- Important things to remember: keep an open mind, not all of us share the same ideas and that’s okay. Your kink is not my kink and that’s okay. To be accepting, without judgements, and having respect for yourself and others.