How to Tell a Partner About Fetishes & Kinky Desires
SDC ASN Lifestyle Magazine Dirk Hooper BDSM Kink Fetish Partner Communication
SDC ASN Lifestyle Magazine Dirk Hooper BDSM Kink Fetish Partner Communication
You’re not alone in your desires. It’s okay to have these feelings, and I have a few suggestions on how to approach your partner about your fetishes.

By Dirk Hooper for ASN Lifestyle Magazine

I’ve been in the BDSM community for two decades. I’ve been a mentor for the past ten years, and I’ve been writing, podcasting, and conducting seminars to help people who are interested in getting involved in kinky play, but they just don’t know where to start.

If I had to pick one thing that I hear more often than any other… it’s this:

“How can I tell my partner I have a sexual fetish?”

The main issue is that fetishes are often considered weird by vanilla society, sometimes they are embarrassing, and sometimes there’s no pattern of communication at all between partners when it comes to sex (which is an even bigger issue).

When it comes to sexual fetishes, it may be something that you’re merely interested in, or it could be something that’s absolutely vital to enjoying sex for you. 

Either way, you don’t want to mess up a good relationship, and you don’t want to rock the boat, especially if things are already going well in the bedroom.

You’re not alone in your desires. It’s okay to have these feelings, and I have a few suggestions on how to approach your partner about your fetishes.


BDSM Couples


One of the most wonderful things that happens with consensual BDSM play is the negotiation that occurs before you play, or you enter into a BDSM relationship. 

Many partners will fill out a BDSM Checklist (resource link below). This allows you to find compatible kinks, what's off the table, and maybe the most important, some areas where negotiation is possible.

I've always wondered why all couples, kinky and vanilla, don't take the time to print out these playlists, fill them out and then compare. Most couples spend more time talking about where they are going to eat than what they want and need in the bedroom.

That needs to change.

The solution is so easy. Print out a playlist, have fun filling it out, then compare and contrast what you and your partner are interested in.

Seriously, what could be more fun than that?


Society Rears its Ugly Head


Where kinks are concerned, people are rightly worried about how their friends, family, or partners would react to learning their deep sexual secrets. 

There are some legitimate concerns about how your kinks could affect your job, or the custody of your children, or your standing in the community.

The first step is to honestly gauge how open-minded your partner is and how solid your relationship is before you approach this subject. 

Introducing kink can spice up things and be fantastic, but if there are deeper problems, it could potentially make things worse. Only you can make that call.

Adding kink to a relationship that has fundamental problems is not a solution. 

Solve the big stuff first, then play.


How to Approach a Partner


Realize at first that some fetishes are not that big a deal. Foot fetish comes to mind as something that can be a big win for an open-minded partner. Most women would appreciate a foot massage, receiving new shoes, and might even be willing to indulge fetishists in wilder activities once they get past the initial question and experiment phase.

If it's something that is more unusual, or is going to require a major change in the relationship, then you are going to have a lot of work to do.


1. Start Slow


If you think your relationship is solid, then simply ask your partner if they would be willing to try new things.


2. Fill Out a BDSM Checklist


The reason why the BDSM Checklist works so well is that you get an opportunity to put everything out there, and your partner does, too. There's no pressure either way.


3. Time to Talk


Go over the list and have an honest conversation. That BDSM playlist is going to open up all kinds of topics for you. Who knows? Maybe you have the same fetishes. If so, that's a big win for both of you.

If not, then you will also know just how open-minded your partner is on your fetish.


4. Relax


Absolutely do not push things if they don't go your way. I can promise you that the way you handle yourself when you're having this conversation will determine if you can ever have a healthy conversation about sex in the future. 

Do not make your partner feel guilty or sad or angry about not agreeing with you. I can't stress that enough. 

Be an adult.


5. Compromise


Find your common ground and start there. Even if it's not what you were looking for, you're going to get to try some new things. Enjoy that you may discover some new kinks of your own.


6. Breathe


Take your time and let things evolve organically. What I marked down on my first BDSM Checklist has changed radically over the years. Things that I thought I would like turned out to be a bore, and some other things I thought I'd never do are now my favorite activities.

I still haven’t crossed off half of the things on my own list because I haven’t found the right partner. That’s okay. Work with what you have. It can be wonderful!

Things change over time. Even if your partner is not interested in your fetish now, that could evolve and grow in a healthy relationship.


Always Be Careful


If your fetish or kink involves pain, bondage, or something more advanced, you need to do a lot of research, or better yet, join a local club before you proceed. Getting a partner to agree to try your fetish may still require some work before you're ready to get started.

Also, I'm going to stress to you, once again, that if you discover your partner is not into your fetish, then harping on the subject will not make it happen and will damage your relationship. I've seen it happen so many times. 

You may not get what you want, but you definitely won't if you don't ask in the first place.

The bottom line is that approaching a partner about your fetishes, or kinky play, can be a great way to add something new to your sex life. 

But, it’s so important that you do it in the right way, that you’re respectful, and that you are grateful for what you have in common, instead of being pushy about what you want.

Keep in mind that compromise means that you’re going to have to be flexible, too.

Handle this the right way, and you will both benefit!


About Dirk Hooper


Dirk Hooper is a professional fetish photographer, published writer, podcasting producer and host, journalist for the fetish community, BDSM mentor, audiobook narrator, and adult personal branding consultant for Sexy Networking.


This article originally appeared in the October 2019 issue of ASN Lifestyle Magazine.


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1 Comments
  • Anonymous
TRIKYDIK
Feb 19, 2020
I dont know if I am just blind, but I can not find the link to the BDSM checklist her refers to in this article. Can someone tell me where it is, please?
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