News

BDSM 
can be an 'emotional 
release'

Experts say practice 
generally safe as long as 
it is consensual and couples discuss it before each session

Psychologist Richard Lim says that for BDSM practitioners, the activity offers them an outlet for total emotional and intimate communication.

"Even among married couples, not all are open to share their innermost desires," he says.

"BDSM requires active discussions and conveying details of all aspects of a session before it begins."

Some overseas experts even believe that it could make you more psychologically healthy. In a Mail Online report last year, experts said this is because those who enjoy kinky sex are more extrovert, more open to new experiences and less neurotic.

Dr Andreas Wismeijer, a psychologist from Tilburg University in Holland, found that BDSM - bondage, discipline, sadism and masochism - practitioners "either did not differ from the general population and if they differed, they always differed in the more favourable direction".

Pro-dommes here say they have seen a gradual increase in the number of new bookings.

One fundamental principle of BDSM is that the activity should be consensual for the involved parties.

Mr Lim says: "It is generally safe as no absolute, real pain is inflicted.

"It is (a) sexual fetish for some men, especially the Alpha-males, to 'retreat' into a 'submissive' role, and (it) allows them a release from their daily stress of being in charge."

One such example is this Singaporean bachelor in his 30s, who wants to be known only as William.

As a top management member in a multi-national company here, he makes million-dollar decisions every month.

He has to oversee most of his company's operations network and by the time he returns to his private apartment in Bukit Timah, it is usually past 3am.

He says: "It got to a point where I wished someone would take control of my life."

That desire, he claims, was what led him to experiment with a different kind of sex play.

William says: "I wasn't looking for sex per se. I only wanted to enjoy a perspective where someone else was calling the shots."

A close friend suggested that he hire a dominatrix for an alternative to "vanilla" (conventional) sex.

William says: "What I really didn't expect was that I would enjoy surrendering control in the intimacy of the bedroom. It felt good to be submissive."

So good, he adds, that he books a session twice a month.

The New Paper on Sunday understands that about 20 per cent of the pro-dommes' clients are management executives and are in high-powered roles.

But, says Mistress Anja, there is "really no stereotype".

She says: "They really can be anyone from different, diverse backgrounds."