Towards a guide of good practices for therapists for the care of clients practicing BDSM • My blog sexo

BDSM practices (Bondage, Domination / Submission, Sado-Masochism) left the list of mental pathologies with the publication of the DSM-V, where they are now considered “unusual sexual practices”.

Many psycho-sexological studies now present these practices as relatively common. Better yet, several studies have shown a positive correlation between BDSM practices and better mental health, with benefits on mood, stress, depression – to the point even that the project BDSM & thérapie questions the practice of SM from the point of view of care.

However, among mental health professionals, this world and these practices are very poorly understood, to the point that people who practice MS are often reluctant to go see a shrink, or do not discuss their sexual practices with him, for fear of judgment or the pathologization of their sexuality (see the article on the bias in the care of BDSM clients)

In the Anglo-Saxon world, SM practitioners recognize themselves as a community, with a specific culture (or sub-culture). They claim their practice of BDSM not as a deviance but as a particularity to be taken into account in their treatment by psychiatrists and psychologists.

It is in this context that Kleinplatz & Moser, in 2004, published a debut of “ Best practice guide for working with BDSM clients ” – in the article Towards clinical guidelines for working with BDSM clients, which I am translating here.

The authors list some directions to consider for a good understanding of the requests of SM practitioners, which seem to me very relevant for therapists brought to follow this type of clients:

Do not assume that the complaint that the customer brings is caused by his SM practices – or even simply in connection with these practices.

Don’t make assumptions about the customer’s expectations – many clients or their spouses will ask for an opinion on the normality of their fantasies and practices, but very few actually wish to change their sexuality.

Do not try to “cure” the client of his sexuality SM – especially since it risks being doomed to failure, like all conversion therapies (such as those intended to suppress homosexuality).

There is no evidence that BDSM tastes are linked to childhood trauma.

Don’t assume that submissives / slaves / bottom are being abused. BDSM is not sexual assault or sexual abuse.

Understand that BDSM fantasies and practices can coexist with “vanilla” sexuality. The practice of SM has never been proven to be linked to unsatisfactory conventional sexuality.

Be advised of difficulties in living out BDSM fantasies throughout the patient’s life (in youth, as a parent, …)

Be able to advise reading, bibliotherapy, which can help the client deal with stigma and overcome the sense of loneliness often encountered in marginalized groups.

Repressed desires are much more frightening. If you are less afraid of your customers’ fantasies than they are, you will be better able to help them.

Be aware of possible counter-transfers. What activates you may be clinical data, educating you about your own issues, or both. In the BDSM world, we anticipate this judgment problem. There is a formula that says ” Your kink is not my kink, but your kink is OK »(Your fantasies are not mine but that’s okay).
It is extremely violent to express judgment, or worse, disgust, at what turns other people on.

If you are uncomfortable, it is your responsibility to inform yourself, find supervision or re-refer this client to a therapist who will know how to support him better.

We would like to give thanks to the author of this short article for this incredible content

Towards a guide of good practices for therapists for the care of clients practicing BDSM • My blog sexo


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