The first time I went to a BDSM party, I was expecting a lot of grunting, moaning, and, well, sex. Yes, there were lots of these things, of course, but I also discovered something new: that some people prefer their kink without sex, thank you very much.

Since then, I've entered in a sexless D/s relationship myself, leading me to look for other kinds of kinky situations where sex isn't needed - and is even frowned upon, sometimes. What I've discovered is a wonderful variety of kinks and relationships that defy the popular idea that BDSM is just about getting your rocks off.

Rope Riggers and Rope Bunnies

One easy category of sexless kinksters to identify are rope riggers and rope bunnies (or b. Now, I know that in private, some rope riggers and bunnies might engage in sex while playing with rope. It happens. However, there are plenty of rigger/bunny relationships that never actually end up involving sexual activities.

Serious rope riggers tend to see rope work as art rather than foreplay; if they find a subject that inspires them, it's more about the beauty they can create with rope, body, and skin than about having sex with the person who's tied up. Rope bunnies might find themselves aroused by being tied up, but it's generally not about sex either for them. They prefer the deep feelings of relaxation and "flight" that happens when they're being taken care of by an experienced rigger.

Rope rigging is often done as a performance, which also excludes obvious sexual activity. When performed on stage, rope is about the energy between rigger and bunny, about the way a rigger manages different positions using different knots and techniques. Often, riggers develop a "style" that is unique to them, kind of like handwriting or drawing. That kind of dedication and practice requires a motivation that goes beyond sex: rope becomes art.

Domestic Servants

On the submissive side, there's a category of people who consider themselves "service submissives." This means that their interest is in serving their Dominant, usually through domestic work, but sometimes through other things, like as a personal assistant or virtual assistant, or anything a Dominant might require help with.

Now, domestic servants are a particular category of service submissives. They focus solely on, you guessed it, domestic work. They don't tend to require sex as a "thank you," either; for them, the act of service is enough to satisfy their kink. A clean house and a relaxed and well-fed Dominant are the only reward they need.

I know a particular kinkster in my area whose kink AND chosen career involves domestic work: being a butler. He has served a few Dominants and tops in my community, and often offers help for free with cleaning and other domestic work to other people as well. He considers it practice, and would never consider asking for payment, whether in money or in sexual favors.

My own sexless D/s experience lies in this kind of service. I discovered that for me (and for other service-oriented subs), the pleasure of satisfying a Dominant's needs and making their life easier is the driving motivation. There is a peaceful, almost zen-like feeling of purpose when I focus all my thoughts and energy on serving my Dominant. At the end of it all, it has nothing to do with sex. It has to do with being of service and with fulfilling the submissive impulse from a different angle.

Dominatrix

Why is Dominatrix here? Well, mostly because most professional Dommes and Dominatrixes I know never have sex with their submissives.

Why not?

Well, according to them, having sex with their subs would be giving the sub what he or she wants... and the whole game is to NOT give them what they want until it is unbearable for the submissive to continue.

Even then, the Domme usually never touches her sub. She simply gives him or her permission to release, possibly after weeks (or months) of denial. For the submissive, this relationship may be about sex, but for the Dominatrix, it's about power and control - and never about sex for herself.

Find Your Kink ... Beyond Sex

Many kinksters are all about the bedroom: they engage in BDSM to improve their sex lives and their relationships. Yet for some, kink goes beyond sex: it can be driven by their personality, their preferred activities, or their enjoyment of control.

If you are serious about practicing BDSM in any form, you should have a look at those who do it without any expectations of sexual activity. Their dedication and self-awareness can teach you a thing or two about being in the moment, being true to yourself, and having honest and truthful relationships with others.