by Daddy Vinnie
You’ve had a dynamic night of play. You’ve spanked, whipped, flogged, and caned her. You’ve bare-hand spanked her, made her crawl to you, gagged her, clover-leafed her nipples, slapped her across the face, choked her. You’ve fucked her against the wall, shoved your cock down her throat, made her cum half a dozen times - with fingers, vibrator, tongue, cock. You’ve come on her body several times, drenching her with your lust and passion. And it has excited you beyond your normal male pervy excitement levels.
Her eyes are growing heavy. It’s late. The play party is winding down.
You are drained but oddly energized from your exertion, ready for some cereal or a midnight snack, before you head to bed to sleep the sleep of the dead or head into round two. Your date/play partner/girlfriend/collared slave/wife/submissive (the exact gendered configuration of your pairing is up to you and doesn’t have to follow my male p.o.v.-I write merely from convention), however, looks like a zombie, nursing bruises and welts, and nodding her head as if she’s headed for deep sleep……or coma.
After a scene, whether intense or not, your partner (or you) may be experiencing subspace or sub/Dom drop, both of which are physical conditions of the body, a response to the physical, mental, and emotional exertions which a BDSM scene exacts on the body. Much has been written about both subspace and sub drop. And maybe in the future I’ll put the entire thing together subspace > aftercare > sub drop. But this post is about aftercare.
When your have finished your scene, it’s time to reconnect with the world and your partner. There are basically 3 elements to aftercare:
1. soothing comfort
2. food and drink
You will also need
* a blanket or jacket, and
* some water and a bit of candy or nuts
* arnica healing balm
Experiencing subspace is much like experiencing being drunk or on drugs. It is, after all, a physical alteration of your body’s chemicals, an intense release of endorphins and adrenaline. Rational thought is gone, the mind is blank, sometimes incoherence extends even to language, and it’s difficult for a submissive experience subspace to articulate even basic concepts. Subspace is truly a mind-alterating event. Treat it seriously, like the trauma it really is.
The first thing you want to do is hold your partner and wrap her in a blanket. Make sure to steady her as she walks, especially if she’s been tied up. Her limbs may be asleep or tingly. Walk her to a safe area and sit down with her. Give her comfort. Hold her. Wrap your arm around her as she cuddles into a blanket.
I like to bring a special fleece blanket, a pink Hello Kitty fleece, and a Hello Kitty stuffie for my “little girl” if we know she’s going to experience an intense scene. I wrap the blanket around her to warm her and she holds the stuffie. Bodies actually lose heat when subjected to physical trauma, so it’s important to have a blanket or jacket at hand. It’s not just for emotional comfort, though that’s part of the blanket’s job, too.
At this time, I also like to have her drink some water or gatorade, anything to replenish fluids to begin the healing process, especially if there has been any bruising. She may be hungry, too. But go light for now. A handful of M&Ms or some salted peanuts, maybe some chicken wings and some raw vegetables, is a good start to getting the body’s metabolism back into balance.
If there are some particularly tender bruises, you can apply arnica healing balm right away. Just smooth it in and it’ll work miracles. (Apply arnica externally only. Avoid cuts and open wounds, especially in cardiac region, as it can be quite toxic. If you use the over the counter salve from your local pharmacy, you should be fine. Thanks to borderlineotaku for this.)
Do not rush any of this. You have all the time in the world. This is prime, and primal, bonding time. Just sit and hold hands, wait for the subspace effects to dissipate and for rational thought to return. Ask her simple questions: ”Are you okay?” ”How are you feeling now?” As the effects lessen, she may begin to talk quite a bit more, or she may get very sleepy. Both are normal reactions.
Depending on the intensity of the scene, aftercare may take anywhere from 3-5 minutes to an hour or two or more. The important point is to take the time needed to regain physical and emotional stability. If aftercare is not applied or is broken too soon, then a sense of abandonment can ensue, especially if such a feeling is processed by a submissive who has not emerged from subspace yet. So it really is important to follow through with aftercare.
Sub (or Dom) Drop is something that happens after a scene, generally after aftercare. This isn’t the place to discuss Drop. But part of good aftercare is to follow up with your partner. Drop can happen anywhere from an hour to several days after a scene. It mimics a mini-depression, and it is. As your body settles down from the effects of your rapid adrenaline release and endorphin rush, your body calms down. By comparison, it feels a bit like the blues. It’s perfectly normal and very similar to the fatigue a runner faces following a runner’s high.
Refuel your body properly with nutritious food and drink, preferably water. Avoid alcohol and fatty fried foods. Pamper yourself with a bubble bath, some tea, some quiet time, some classical music. And call or touch base with your partner the next day to make sure that he or she is okay.
I like to think of aftercare as extended cuddling. Because basically, that’s what it is. It’s quiet time with a purpose. It’s best done on a rainy day, hearing the drops play music on the roof tiles, smelling the damp come through the open windows, the freshly washed sheets smooth and cool to the touch, your lover’s skin and scent wrapped around you like a comforting fog, tea brewing on the bedside table.
Be forewarned - recipe for addiction: Aftercare is best done with a pure heart, open arms, and the love of your life.
All you lovely D/s players out there ought to take a few minutes to read this informative and helpful guide the importance of aftercare.