One of the most debated but rarely explained topics in the BDSM community is consensual non-consent, or CNC. The real definition of this type of D/s relationship is one of deep trust, not abuse. And even though the sex fantasy of rape play is pretty common, this kink is still a taboo topic. What is the real meaning of consensual non-consent? And do you still need a contract or agreement? Let’s look closer at CNC, plus I have some stimulating ideas and examples to get you started.
Consensual non-consent vs. rape fantasy explained
Before we begin discussing everything you need to know about CNC, we need to first understand how it differs from rape play. Even though the two are very similar, rape fantasy or play rape, usually just refers to the sexual act, whereas consensual non-consent can encompass all aspects of a D/s relationship.
Some people use the terms interchangeably, and even rape play is a fantasy for many “vanilla” people. Feel free to use whichever term you’re comfortable with, but always make sure everything is safe, sane, and consensual.
1. Consensual non-consent meaning in BDSM
The definition for consensual non-consent is a mutual agreement where the Dom is able to act as if the sub has waived all consent. Complete consent is given beforehand, with the understanding of it being a permanent arrangement under most circumstances.
The bottom line is that this is something the sub has willingly said they wanted. The “non-consensual” part also means that sometimes the Dom may have to make the sub obey if they refuse.
Why would a sub, and especially a slave, say “no” if they already gave their total submission? Simply put, because subs and slaves aren’t robots. They have feelings, needs, wants, and imperfections too. They may disagree with the Dom, and voice it, but they still ultimately want to serve and be used.
If you’re still confused as to the meaning of consensual non-consent, here is what it means to me:
“I like it even when I don’t like it. I want it even when I don’t want it.”
2. Do you need safewords or a contract in CNC?
Since trust is so important in consensual non-consent I would say that safewords are preferred. Safewords make everything clear. Of course it’s a good practice for a Dom to remind a sub that they have safewords during an intense scene.
We usually think trust has to do with the sub trusting the Dom, but the Dom has to equally be able to trust their sub. “No means no” in a court of law, regardless if it’s a D/s relationship, or even if there’s a BDSM contract or agreement. A Dom needs to know that the sub is completely willing, even if they’re yelling and crying for something to stop.
If you are in a 24/7 relationship, in your contract or agreement you can discuss removing safewords in certain situations, like during punishments.
For example, some couples don’t allow safewords at all in non-consensual play, as they feel it gives the submissive too much control. An example of this type of D/s relationship is a total power exchange relationship, or TPE.
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3. Subdrop and aftercare will be different
After a play session, a sub might act completely different if conensual non-consent was involved. After a scene I usually like to cuddle, but if we did some forceful, hard playing I can’t stand to be held.
My Dom knows that it’s difficult for me to receive affection after consensual non-consent, so he’ll give me my space and just maybe rest a hand on my shoulder. It’s not uncommon for a sub to get upset and angry, almost as if they were really abused.
This is because the mind and body are so connected. If a sub’s body is abused in a non-pleasurable way, their mind will begin to associate with that emotionally.
During subdrop they will slowly start to feel safe and in control again. It’s extremely important for the Dom to respect this and not get offended during this time, but to continue to provide aftercare.
4. Rape play is more than just a kink fantasy
Many BDSM players may use the terms rape play and consensual non-consent interchangeably, but as we discussed at the beginning, they are not the same thing. Rape play is just one small aspect of a CNC kink. Even those in a vanilla relationship may have that fantasy.
For some victims of past abuse though, acting it out can be very therapeutic. To them CNC can have a bigger meaning. It can be a way to relive the experience, knowing that they now have the power to make it stop.
If you are going to engage in rape play with someone, make sure limits are clearly discussed/included in your contract or agreement. For example, vaginal rape may be acceptable, but anal may not be.
5. Ideas for D/s sex and beyond
There are many ways to engage in consensual non-consent, both sexual and non-sexual. If you are in a BDSM relationship, or even if you just play part-time, here are some ideas and examples:
- The Dom can dress up like an actual attacker (if they wear a mask, make sure at least part of the face is visible so the sub knows it’s not a real attacker)
- Use rope to tie up the sub and gag them during sex
- Enforce punishments that the sub will not like
- Engage in pain play that tests the sub’s limits
See 30+ punishment ideas here »
Another example of a CNC kink situation is somnophilia. The definition of somnophila is a kink where the Dominant performs sex acts on the submissive while they are unconscious or asleep. The sub would have to give their consent to this situation beforehand. This is actually a sex kink that my Dom and I enjoy on occasion.
Consensual non-consent is probably one of my favorite aspects of a BDSM lifestyle, and brings more meaning to my D/s relationship. Sex can be so much more thrilling when you didn’t say yes.
Forcing someone to do something, or being forced yourself, can be very alluring. Hopefully now that we’ve explained this hotly debated topic and you have some fun ideas, you can begin to safely experience it too. 🖤