What Is a Safe Word – And When Should You Use One?
A ‘safe word’ is a word or phrase used when taking part in sexual activity. It is an agreed upon word or phrase that is discussed beforehand so signal quickly that you want something to stop or change while having sex. They are often used in role play or fetish games where saying ‘stop’ or ‘don’t’ is simply part of the game so another word is used so both parties understand each other throughout the game.
The safe word is a signal, agreed between participants, to be employed if things go too far, or you are otherwise unhappy with the situation, impelling the other person to stop immediately, check and then continue in a different manner or stop altogether.
People use safe words when they engage in activities which fall under the BDSM, role play or Edge Play, category of sex. When partaking in these activities, it is vitally important that you play safely, sanely, and with consent which is why ‘safe words’ are so useful.
You will find that sex clubs and dungeons often have a communal safe word, which you learn upon joining them. One of the most common variations employs the traffic analogy: “Green” denoting “More”, or “Harder”, depending on what is being done; “Amber”, or “Orange”, suggesting that the person receiving the punishment, the submissive partner, is either approaching their limit, or not sure that they’re enjoying the scenario, indicating that it’s time to pull back and slow down, till they either give you the go-ahead to take things further or else halt completely; and of course, “Red” meaning “Stop”.
Those who do not adhere to these rules within club situations will often have their memberships revoked with immediate effect, as BDSM communities pride themselves on trust and honesty, ensuring that everyone has a great time. These guidelines are perfect to incorporate into your own sex life especially if you are trying out something new – or if one partner within the relationship is more enthusiastic than the other concerning an activity.
Cutting off circulation with restraints, for example, or using heavy-duty whips and floggers, can cause serious damage in the hands of those who are inexperienced, so taking things slow and learning how to use your sexual devices correctly minimises the risks. Of course, however you wish to play, whether you tend to be dominant or submissive within a scene, you all need a safe word, and to confirm that it’s known to each other before you begin. Never choose words such as, ”No”, ”Don’t”, or ”Stop” – as these words are often the words used when you’re enjoying the scenario, desiring that a lover or playmate carries on, and perhaps goes further, and harder, with what they are administering – so consider prudently. Of course, totally random words, which will jolt your partner right out of the situation, work well too, but only if you are playing with lovers. Generic words, or the traffic light metaphor, are normally the more astute method to employ when with strangers, or at parties.
Always remember to relax and have fun though – as at the end of the day, that’s what it’s all about.