This question was recently sent in to Kink Weekly: “My Dom and I are moving into a nonsexual version of our relationship due to personal reasons. But after so many years of sexual play, He is having a hard time separating sex from our D/s relationship, but I have told him it is possible. Can someone help me with nonsexual ideas for rewards and punishments that do not include humiliation?”
I am going to offer what I can to help, however, “humiliation” has not been defined specifically. I realize the reader is looking for non-sexual and not humiliating, however, humiliation is subjective. Keeping this in mind I will do my best to give this reader some ideas and, hopefully, in the process – give other readers ideas whether or not their relationship is sexual in nature.
Let’s begin with rewards since it’s a bit easier to know that humiliation can be avoided. The ideas are endless really. What does the s-type enjoy? Perhaps a nice outing to a favorite museum or restaurant. Cooking their favorite food or allowing for an extravagant dessert. Having a “date night” – movies, club, concert, etc. Other ideas include pampering – giving the s-type a foot rub or drawing them a bubble bath. If this seems to “servicey” (probably not a word? Lol) to you as the D-type, then perhaps buying them a professional massage or day at the spa. Footing the bill for a mani/pedi, tickets to a favorite sporting event, new items for a favorite hobby, book shopping, etc. From small rewards to bigger ones – just basically consider what the s-type enjoys and would like to earn.
Now let’s discuss punishments. This is a bit trickier when looking to avoid humiliation. I will do my best to give some ideas that I wouldn’t consider humiliating, however, they may still feel humiliating to others. I will, however, obviously steer clear of any sexual humiliation.
Some ideas that are very service oriented tend to work well. Cleaning is one example. Especially if cleaning isn’t normally expected or if extra cleaning can be added. For example, cleaning out the oven, bathtub or refrigerator. Re-organizing the garage or going thru the closets and doing a “spring cleaning” no matter the time of year. You could do extra errands for the D-type like doing their grocery shopping for the week or their laundry.
Another idea is simply taking away something they enjoy. Perhaps every night they like to have a bowl of ice cream – punishment is to not allow that for a night or a week. Perhaps they splurge on Starbucks on their way to work every day – punishment is to brew at home and take in a travel mug. Perhaps if they are really bad you don’t play that weekend.
There are more common punishments like writing lines or doing corner time. I don’t know how humiliating those would be considered. Again, much of this is subjective.
Be creative. When you really sit down and start thinking of things the ideas will probably start to flow. I hope this helps the reader that wrote in and I hope it helps others as well!
Jennifer Masri is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, specializing in Alternative Lifestyles for individual and relationship issues. She also teaches the BDSM 101 class series at Sanctuary LAX in Los Angeles every Monday evening. Read more about Jennifer on her blog, A Kink Shrink.