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  • Ms Simone Reage

How to punish your submissive in BDSM -Meditations on Discipline and Punishment


Medieval Torturers torturing prisoner on a rack.
Medieval Torturers torturing prisoner on a rack.

How to punish your submissive in BDSM? Something that strikes Me, when reading emails and messages from fantasists telling Me I can punish them with no limits, filled with graphic descriptions of gruesome torture or depraved acts, is just how wrongly these men understand what it means to punish. Perhaps that is inevitable when you spend infinitely more time writing one handed emails than actually booking and executing sessions.


Just because something is scary, vile, disgusting, painful or any number of adjectives generally considered to be unpleasant doesn't mean it's a punishment. A punishment is something you do not want to happen to you, and writing essays and screeds in My inbox graphically describing these things suggests you actually do want these things to happen to you, very much in fact.


In his book, Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison, Foucault describes the evolution of punishment from torture to prison. Ultimately torture fell out of favour as a mode of punishment because it tended to galvanise public opinion in favour of the criminal and lead to riots in favour of the criminal, destabilising society. Modern discipline extends beyond punishment for wrongdoing - it centres on individuals in society internalising the discipline of external systems themselves, enforced by the constant possibility of surveillance.



Two members of the Spanish Inquisition torture a woman in a rack.
Torture devices from the Spanish Inquisition


For Me, punishment is the absence of distraction, coupled with claustrophobia. Pain I can take, and I'm confident enough to overcome humiliation. But being stuck in a lift? That's torture. I distinctly remember how horrified I was to discover that I was being left alone in a dark room for 45 minutes with only some whale noises for company on My first (and last) acupuncture appointment.


When it comes to sessions, ideally punishments are avoided. I have no issue with a brat, and quite enjoy doling out funishments, but true punishments compromise the scene for both of U/us. It will be something you don't enjoy, and your misbehaviour will likely have soured My mood. I have certain prescribed punishments for common infractions, but a true punishment will be unique and customised to the individual. It must be unpleasant, yet manageable. Ideally it will reinforce the desired good behaviour, while punishing the bad. It must be carried out with an awareness both of the sub's hard and soft limits, and individual strengths and weaknesses. For example while writing lines may seem like a relatively straightforward punishment, I have found that it can carry an enormous amount of emotional weight, particularly amongst men of a certain generation. It can bring up feelings of intellectual inadequacy. It can trigger issues stemming from deep-rooted childhood trauma. Will it affect everyone this way? Absolutely not. But I always try and conceptualise every punishment from a place of empathy for the unique experiences of My submissive.


Man being attacked by a brush by two torturers
Man being tortured on a ship

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