Predicament bondage describes a specific kind of kink play that combines restraint with psychological play. Most often, it it involves putting someone in a position that requires them to make choices between one kind of discomfort or another. It can also involve creating a scenario where someone is told to hold still (with or without restraints) and is teased or tormented in a way that encourages movement, forcing them to fight against that impulse.

Who says choices can't be sexy? Here's an introduction to predicament bondage.

It's About Choice

For people who enjoy the emotional and psychological aspects of kink and BDSM, predicament bondage can be a vast playground of creativity. And, like all forms of kink, it can be silly and playful as well as serious, depending on the preference of the players.

Author and educator Allison Moon says, “In my world, the ‘predicament’ aspect of predicament bondage is that the bound person has choice. This is in contrast to traditional bondage, where the bound person is pretty much fixed in the position they’re placed in.

Personally, the way I like to play with predicament bondage is giving my submissive choice, but between two emotional stakes: pleasing me and disappointing me.

For instance, I might have them hold a challenging position for the sheer pleasure of making me happy. As they hold that position, I’ll coo at them what a good job they’re doing, or share dirty talk for all the delightful things we’ll do after I let them go. The longer they can stay in place, the more proud I am of them, and the more adoration I’ll offer.”

It Offers Accessibility

While this form of play might require a higher level of creativity, in many ways it’s more accessible than restraints like rope bondage, which can have a steep learning curve and some particular safety considerations. (That said, there are safer options. Check out 8 Awesome Sex Positions That Are Waaaay Better With Bondage Tape.)

Like all kink, it’s important to carefully negotiate in advance what you’re going to do, and the limits of each party. When you’re engaging in psychological play, it is very important to be ready for emotional triggers. For this reason, it can be safer to do this play when there’s already a relationship of established trust.

Adding these emotional elements, whether it’s the bottom choosing between kinds of pain or pleasing their partner, can make the play far more intense than a scene that’s purely physical, like a flogging. That means you should be absolutely sure to schedule plenty of time for aftercare, where you snuggle, talk about the scene, and comfort and reassure each other.

It's More Than Traditional Restraints


Another educator who gets creative with her play is Annamarie.

“I usually call what I do predicament play, since ‘bondage’ makes people expect rope, and that is not a skill I possess. My predicament scenes usually include clips, clamps, string, needles, and sometimes even electricity.

I am a reaction junkie, and this kind of play really feeds me. I get to restrict movement without having to tie knots. I get to come up with unique and surprising torments for my play partners. There's often a lot of laughter (at least on my part), and I love mixing humor and kink. It gives me perfect moments of getting to comfort a suffering bottom as they torture themselves. If I set it all up well enough, I get to immerse more in those delicious reactions.”

Getting Started with Predicament Bondage

Inspired to try predicament bondage yourself? In one memorable experience of mine, I was on hands and knees like a coffee table. My legs were bound together with plastic wrap which also trapped a wand vibrator against me, and I was teased with ice cubes … all while a freshly poured hot cup of tea sat on my back. If I moved, the tea would spill and scald me.

My legs were bound together with plastic wrap which also trapped a wand vibrator against me, and I was teased with ice cubes…all while a freshly poured hot cup of tea sat on my back. If I moved, the tea would spill and scald me.

Mistress Viola suggests, “It can be a simple as having them hold something precarious (like a candle that will burn them if they move) or as complicated as ropes to nipple clamps to genital bondage with weights and gags.”

Moon says, “Simply command your submissive to close their eyes, or stay seated in a different room. Then you can do fun things like masturbate or prepare toys while they have to wrestle with the choice of cheating by taking a peek or not. This can pair particularly well with cuckold fetishes, if you have another lover to play with as your submissive squirms. For people who enjoy the agony of FOMO, this is an easy way to explore that. “

Annamarie offers, “Have a bottom bend their knees slightly and tie their pubic hair to their big toes using clamps and dental floss then tickle, smack, and otherwise encourage them to move.”

More Than One Partner?


Predicament bondage or play also works particularly well with multiple partners. You can set up scenarios that require people to work together or offer traded or collective punishment.

I experienced this style of play in one of Annamarie's classes. She had everyone who was willing to participate, about 20 people, stand in a circle, put on nipple clamps, and then she strung the nipple clamps together. As people in the circle were teased they’d move around, pulling on everyone else in the circle.

As you can see, setting up a predicament can be as simple or as elaborate as you desire, and can be anything from silly to serious. All you need is an active imagination, some clear communication, and two (or more) willing players.