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with Nagma V. Clark, Ph.D., LPCC

You Are Kinky But Your Partner Is Not

 

You are finding yourself more and more curious about kink and would love to explore what it would be like to bring kink into your relationship. The idea of discovering brand new sexual interests and adding variety to your sexual experiences is making you very excited and eager to move forward. But there is one hitch that is making you pull the brakes on your excitement- your partner doesn’t share your curiosity and is not drawn to kink.

You are committed to your partner but don’t know how to work through this predicament and the idea of giving up your interest in kink doesn’t feel fair. Perhaps, it would help you to know that you are not the only one in this situation because mismatched interest in kink is a common sexual incompatibility among couples.

If the situation is not handled delicately and diligently by the couple, it could damage the trust and safety in the relationship. The hesitant partner might begin to feel insecure about the relationship if the kinky partner insists on going forward with the exploration without taking into account their partner’s feelings. The kinky partner, on the other hand, might begin to feel deprived of the opportunity to explore their sexual fantasies and interests because of their partner’s reluctance to step outside of the box.

Here are some things the kinky partner can do:

1. Acknowledge fear of change-

Chances are that your partner is not only afraid to explore and experiment outside of the box but also afraid about how kink will change the dynamic of your relationship. Acknowledge their fear of change which many of us feel when we are about to step into an unknown territory. Invite your partner to share their fears by being open and present.

2. Reassure them of the love and safety in the relationship-

Your partner might feel threatened by your desire to explore kink or incorporate it into your sex life. It might bring up feelings of inadequacy and feelings of not being a good enough lover. Reassure your partner that no matter what happens, your love for them will remain constant and that the safety of your relationship will not be compromised.

3. Be patient and kind-

It is very helpful if the kinky partner can express and convey patience & kindness to their partner who is unsure about exploring kink. Imagine if you loved to climb mountains and your partner was scared of heights, how would you encourage them to get over their fear? By being patient and kind which works better than giving ultimatums or threatening to leave the relationship, you are making it more inviting for your partner to try something new and scary.

4. Express appreciation-

Showing appreciation to your partner for their willingness to step outside of their comfort zone can be extremely helpful as well. Your partner is taking a huge risk by putting aside their fears of change or failure and taking a leap into unchartered waters. Let them know that you acknowledge the risk they are taking and just how much you appreciate their willingness to take the plunge.

5. Go slow-

The most important tip for such couples is to go slow and allow the non-kinky partner to set the pace. This will give your partner a sense of control in a new situation or setting and they can also get a feel for what they can handle and what feels overwhelming. Going back to the example above, if you wanted your partner to learn how to climb a mountain, you would first teach them how to climb an indoor rock wall and chances are that initially, they might not be able to get past the first couple of steps.

6. Explore together-

It is also important to engage in joint research and exploration into the many different ways in which to play with kink and to only select the ones which feel comfortable and safe for both partners. For example, pick an activity such as hair pulling, light spanking or using a scarf for tying and explore together how each activity feels before moving on to flogging or rope restraints.

 

You Are Kinky But Your Partner Is Not

Dr. Nagma V. Clark, Ph.D., L.P.C.C.

Nagma V. Clark, Ph.D., L.P.C.C. is a sex & relationship expert, founder of Tri-Valley Relationship Therapy, Inc. - a thriving sex therapy & couples counseling practice in the Bay Area, CA. Dr. Clark specializes in working with couples & individuals struggling with low or mismatched libido, weak or absent orgasms, performance anxiety, erectile dysfunction, sexual pain, sexuality & aging, general sexual dissatisfaction etc. She also works with people interested in exploring sexual orientation, gender identity, kink, BDSM, polyamory, and atypical sexual behaviors. She has been in the field of sexuality since 2006, including 4 years of clinical experience in the area of forensic sexuality, treating sexual paraphilias. She is a licensed professional clinical counselor (L.P.C.C.) with license to practice psychotherapy in the states of CA, PA & LA. She holds a doctorate in human sexuality with specialization in sex therapy from Widener University, PA. Since 2002, her clinical experience has spanned individuals, couples & families from diverse cultural, ethnic & racial backgrounds in the United States as well as abroad. As a bi-cultural, multilingual woman of color, she possesses an expansive & versatile view of the world which she brings into her work and her writing. For more information or to reach Dr. Clark, please visit Tri-Valley Relationship Therapy, Inc.


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APA Reference
, . (2018). You Are Kinky But Your Partner Is Not. Psych Central. Retrieved on August 22, 2018, from https://blogs.psychcentral.com/sex-talk/2018/07/you-are-kinky-but-your-partner-is-not/

 

Last updated: 26 Jul 2018
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 26 Jul 2018
Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.