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BDSM: What You Need to Know About Getting Kinky in the Bedroom

From the Show: HER
Summary: Is kink and BDSM safe for your relationship?
Air Date: 2/26/15
Duration: 10
Host: Michelle King Robson and Pamela Peeke, MD
Guest Bio: Robert Weiss, LCSW
Robert Weiss Robert Weiss LCSW, CSAT-S, is a therapist, author and clinical educator who has been writing about and treating sexual addiction for 25 years, and whose work specializes in the link between digital technology and personal relationship management.

Today he is Senior Vice President of Clinical Development for Elements Behavioral Health, now the largest provider of residential addiction treatment in the nation.

A UCLA MSW graduate and early trainee of Dr. Patrick Carnes, Robert is the founding director of The Sexual Recovery Institute in Los Angeles (opened in 1995). He is also author of Cruise Control, Sex Addiction 101 and co-author with Dr. Jennifer Schneider of Closer Together, Further Apart and most recently, Always Turned On. He has appeared as a commentator on CNN, The Oprah Winfrey Network and The Today Show while his work has been featured in he New York Times and Wall St. Journal.

Robert has also been invited to provide clinical training and program development by the National Institutes of Health, United States Armed Forces, and behavioral health treatment centers worldwide.
BDSM: What You Need to Know About Getting Kinky in the Bedroom
When you hear the term "BDSM," it's hard not to think about 50 Shades of Grey, handcuffs, chains and whips, and Rihanna's hit song "S&M." However, do you really know what BDSM is?

BDSM stands for bondage, discipline, dominance/submissive, and masochism and includes a huge variety of what kinds of kinkiness can go on between a couple in the bedroom. For example, BDSM could mean you like to be tied up, blindfolded, or spanked, or dress up in different outfits.

There's no reason for you to feel embarrassed or ashamed for wanting to experience new sexual boundaries with your partner, but it's really important to discuss with your partner certain behaviors you may not feel comfortable doing. As long as you both are on the same page, BDSM is considered healthy and safe.

The remaining question, however, is this: could BDSM eventually lead to a sex addiction?

Robert Weiss, LCSW, discusses everything you need to know about BDSM and kink in women and relationships.
Transcription:

RadioMD Presents: HER Radio | Original Air Date: February 26, 2015
Host: Michelle King Robson and Pam Peeke, MD

Dr. Pam Peeke, founder of the Peeke Performance Center and renowned nutrition and fitness expert, and Michelle King Robson, founder of EmpowHER.com and leading women's advocate, cut through the confusion and share the naked, bottom line truth about all things woman. It's HER Radio.

PAM: Oh, boy. Here we go. Fifty Shades of "her" again, Michelle. Geeze. Do you realize that movie has actually made $400 million globally?

MICHELLE: I know.

PAM: And, it's still rocking out there.

MICHELLE: That's crazy.

PAM: I can't bring myself to see it.

MICHELLE: Well, I haven't either, but the rest of the world has seen it and I think it's fascinating that women are embracing this. I think we're going to find out why today on our show, right? One of the reasons why, at least.

PAM: Well, we're going to be talking about sort of an interesting nuance here and this is the whole issue of bondage and S & M and, basically, kink in women. Sort of everything you need to know.

MICHELLE: Oh. Oh. Oh.

PAM: No one else in the whole world. Just stop it, Michelle. Just control yourself. for just five minutes.

MICHELLE: I can't help myself.

PAM: I'm going to get through this one way or another.

MICHELLE: I'm sorry.

PAM: I know. Speaking of which—kinky sex and all. We have our absolute "go to" professional, the expert in this field who can just help us through and that is Robert Weiss. He's a therapist, author and clinical educator who has been writing about and treating sex addiction and all things that involve the issue of sex and relationships in the digital age. Speaking of which, he's got a brand new title, a book, Always Turned On: Sex Addiction in the Digital Age. It just came out last week. You can get it on Amazon—anywhere. I'm so excited to have Rob back on again.

Hey, Rob! Welcome back to HER Radio.

ROB: Dr. Peeke, I love being your sexpert.

PAM: See, this is why I love him, Michelle.

MICHELLE: What about me, Rob? What about me, Rob? It's all about me.

ROB: Oh, I'm sorry. Both of you. I mean, both of your sexperts. I did want to weigh in on Fifty Shades before we talk about kink really quickly?

PAM: Yes. Please do.

ROB: And just say why I think it's had so much attraction for women because I really don't think it's about the S & M so much. In my world, we look at that movie as being the most prototypic form of female pornography meaning that this is the set-up for female porn. You have an innocent young woman who has found a really bad boy who has this glint of gold and warm light in him and she can see that through her love and her goodness. She's going to turn him into the man that she's always wanted him to be and he will become the loving and committed partner and all his badness will go away. This is called female porn. You see it in Twilight and True Blood and all of these bad boys stories where these women come along and save these men. So, I would just like to volunteer that while the kink is the interesting sidelight, what really sold that book and that movie is that it is the ultimate female porn fantasy.

PAM: Oh, my God.

MICHELLE: That's very interesting.

PAM: We're actually rescuing this guy and we're just turning his little nasty boy world into something else. It also helps that he's a billionaire. You know, that's the part that got me going.

MICHELLE: And, he's pretty good-looking, too. I have to say.

PAM: Listen, money talks. Money talks about kink, too. So, alright, Rob.

MICHELLE: So, pornography for women. That's interesting, right? That there's now pornography for women.

ROB: Well, there's always been. And, we should talk about the kink, but I just want to say that men are interested in the objectified body parts. We like to look at the boobs. We like to look at the butts. We like to look at the crotches. We are visually stimulated, but women are much more emotionally stimulated and what they're looking for is some kind of guy—fantasy guy—that they can turn into the man of your dreams. If you can put that into regular porn, you've got female porn.

PAM: I like it. This is so cool. Alright. Go to kink. Tell us what kink's all about, for crying out loud.

ROB: Well, we would, in the past, call it "alternative sexuality" or "atypical sexuality" although we're finding a lot more people engage. Now that the internet has opened our world, we're finding a lot more people talking about things that we never knew they were doing. Your nice next door neighbor who, in the 1960's, you thought was having the same missionary sex you were, was actually encouraging her husband to get out the whip and chains and we just never knew that. So, I think part of what we're seeing in escalation, if you will, in kink is the fact that people are more willing to talk about it. The internet has introduced it. All of that.

What is it? It's sexual behavior where an object is involved in the experience. So, you know, kink might be "I want to wear leather", which is an object, right? Or, "I like to wear boots" or "I like someone to take an object and hit me with it or use objects to tie me up", so kink, in general—although not entirely—but the kind of kink we're talking about (BDSM – bondage and discipline) usually involves some form of objectified sexuality.

PAM: That makes sense.

MICHELLE: So, Rob, do you think that there's been a spike in popularity since the Fifty Shades of Grey movie came out?

ROB: You know, I think that people who are interested in trying things out maybe have more permission to try it out or people who thought, "Oh, this is..." This is what I think the great thing is about our internet world today is, you know, things that aren't really harmful to anybody and that two people do in the privacy of their home and they agree to do it and they're comfortable with it, they don't feel like it's so horrible because they see it reflected in the media. So, again, I will say the spike, if you will, in behavior which we're certainly experiencing, probably has more to do with our culture shift and you wouldn't have seen a movie like Fifty Shades of Grey 25 years ago. It wouldn't have existed. You know, we were much more seeing things about affairs and casual sex and things that were much more enticing to a generation before. I think women have more permission to engage in kink and the ones who are interested and enjoy it may find themselves doing it and, you know, quite honestly, I'm not a kink person. I mean, I'm not a woman either. It's just that probably if you tried to hit me, I would hit you back. You know? It's not for me. It's not for me.

PAM: Keep your mitts off me! No!

ROB: It might be for someone else. So, basically, what I want to say is that whatever your arousal patterns are, whatever turns you on, that's pretty set by the time you're about 12 or 13. So, in adult life, people may not have allowed themselves to indulge in things that they had fantasies about. I think now, movies like Fifty Shades give them more permission to say, "Let me give this a try. It might be more fun than I think."

PAM: Is that a slippery slope to sex addiction?

ROB: Well, I don't think it's any more of a slippery slope than alcohol is to alcoholics, you know? We tried banning alcohol in this country at one time with the thought that, "Oh, my God! Everyone who drinks is going to be an alcoholic. We've got to get rid of this stuff." There reality is, the numbers for alcoholism remained the same throughout time. About 8-12% of the population, something like that. So, when we look at sex addiction, it's not that different. Just because there are more types and more sexuality available online for people to view, that doesn't mean everyone's going to become addicted, but it does mean that those who are vulnerable to it are more likely to get stuck because it's just so easy to be impulsive with an app or social media.

MICHELLE: So, what are some signs of a sex addict? Can you give us a few?

ROB: Oh! We're going to talk about sex addiction? Well, sex addiction has many of the same signs as any other addiction. You know, the person has said to themselves, I'm not going to see this person anymore; I'm not going to engage in this act anymore; I'm not going to engage in this place anymore. They really want to change their behavior, whatever it is, and they find that they're not able to. They've lost control. They're having consequences related to sexual behavior. So they're getting an STD; or they're living in a lot of fear of being found out; or they get arrested; or someone at work saw and they thought, "I really can't be doing that," and then they keep doing it anyway.

PAM: Rob. Rob. Rob, hold on. I'm going to interrupt you here. So, I want everyone to understand that there's a whole world of sex addiction. Now that we've brought this up and Rob Weiss is literally one of the nation's leading experts on this whole issue. I want to make sure you all grab this new book that just came out that he's authored, Always Turned on: Sex Addiction in the Digital Age and go to his website and that's: RobertWeissMSW.com to learn about his incredible work.

First of all, I just want to thank you on behalf of HER Radio for helping us understand all things kink and especially the Fifty Shades of Her so that we can put this all into perspective. Everything we wanted to know. "Soup to nuts" as they say in the business.

I'm Dr. Pam Peeke with Michelle King Robson.

MICHELLE: Don't forget you can buy Rob Weiss' book, Always Turned On.

You're listening to HER Radio on RadioMD. Follow us on Twitter. Like us on Facebook. Stay well.
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