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Table of Contents

What is aftercare?

Aftercare is an essential aspect of BDSM, which involves taking care of oneself and one’s partner(s) after a BDSM scene or activity. 

After a BDSM scene, participants may experience physical and emotional sensations that require care and attention. Physical aftereffects may include soreness, bruises, and other physical injuries, while emotional aftereffects may include feelings of vulnerability, anxiety, or emotional release. Aftercare can help participants to process and manage these sensations in a safe and supportive environment.

The importance of aftercare in BDSM cannot be overstated. Without proper aftercare, participants may experience emotional distress, trauma, or physical harm, which can have long-lasting effects on their mental and physical well-being. In addition, aftercare can help to strengthen the trust and connection between partners, promoting a more positive and fulfilling BDSM experience.

What does aftercare involve?

Some common aftercare activities include:

  • Physical touch, such as cuddling or holding
  • Verbal reassurance, such as affirmations or expressions of appreciation,
  • Providing food or drink to help replenish energy 
  • Providing specific treats that act as a sensory trigger to feel grounded again, such as chocolates, jellybeans, or a cup of tea.
  • Talking and laughing
  • Showering (together or separately)
  • Familiar music or tv show


It is important to recognise that each persons needs are different. For some, cuddling may be too much, and they might prefer a simple hand on the shoulder to provide reassurance, or no contact at all.

It may take some time to work out what you and your partner’s specific needs are. The list above may be good starting point to read through yourself, and talk through with your partner. Remember that good communication is key to ensuring that everyone’s needs are being met.


Bad Girls Bible (2020), The Complete BDSM Aftercare Guide: Learn How To Do It Right, https://badgirlsbible.com/bdsm-aftercare, Accessed 14th March 2023. 


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