THE ART OF THE ST. ANDREW’S CROSS
I’m an erotic romance author and have done copious amount of research for my books because I write a lot about BDSM. I’m not going to try and tell you I’m an expert but in my research I’ve spent time with several true Dom’s and Masters discussing the lifestyle and they’ve allowed me into their worlds in eye opening ways.
Many people enjoy a bit of kink and while couples of all types may indulge in a little vanilla spanking, purchasing and using sex toys and even shackling your partner every once in awhile, few people truly engage in the art of BDSM. Or do they? The practice is more widespread than you think however. Domination and submission has been around for centuries and with the explosion of the internet you can find almost anything and anybody you’re looking for. I caution anyone who may be thinking about doing this and don’t have a partner, be careful. Many say they know what they’re doing and they don’t. Remember that trust is the number one aspect of engaging in any sexual games. If you and your partner are curious of course you can learn and read and there are also Masters who will provide training for you as a couple.
One of the aspects of BDSM is restraining and disciplining subs. What many people don’t understand is that whipping, caning, flogging and spanking are not simply used in methods of punishment. For those who engage in the lifestyle subs often crave being flogged and even some enter what is known as subspace. Don’t get me wrong, in talking with several Dom’s they do punish but typically certain methodologies are reserved for playtime or as the Dom I speak with most – the time for “using” his sub.
That’s where spanking benches and other apparatuses come into play and one of the favored pieces is the St. Andrew’s Cross or more popularly know as the “X” Cross because of it’s simple design. Whether in polished wood or steel the oversized piece is in the shape of an “x”. Subs are restrained at their wrists and ankles in various ways from leather straps to chains and are whipped with various selected tools.
That sounds simple enough, doesn’t it? But in truth the playtime does or needs to go further. Meaning – you really need to have someone who knows what they’re doing before they pick up a whip and start beating their sub. That’s not what this is about. Don’t get me wrong, there are true sadists out there who enjoy nothing more than flogging or beating a sub with zero regard to their welfare or their enjoyment. Sadists get their pleasure from giving pain. That’s it. They don’t care if they harm you at all.
As my Dom has said – if I would consider moving into the lifestyle or even for measured playtime he would hurt me but not harm me. His pleasure would be seeing me getting pleasure from the whipping and of course other aspects of playing. That’s not to say that there won’t be welts and bruising. Depending on your skin and how the implement is handled – of course the sub is going to have marks. That’s part also of what this is about. But if the Dom or Domme knows what they’re doing they can tell almost instantly when it’s time to stop. It’s been said that as some subs enter the heightened state of pleasure they beg for more. This is what is known as subspace – the moment of pure ecstasy where the dichotomy of pain and pleasure is at its pinnacle.
For the cross itself there are things to look for when considering purchasing. First of all there are companies that specialize in the design and built and many places offer custom designs. There are those who practice the art who build them but I caution those who don’t know the building industry etc as many of the crosses have been known to topple over. Some of these are free standing while others are attached to walls. I’ve even seen some that if vanilla style friends would come over would not be noticed at all – almost like a dazzling piece of art on the wall.
The shackles can be custom made or purchased through many online sites. Now the cross isn’t just used for whipping either. Imagine the possibilities of using toys on your sub. Mmmm… For those of you who might be considering moving into the realm of BDSM I will always tell you to do your homework thoroughly. If you either allow yourself to get into a situation with someone you don’t know or if you try something with your partner you haven’t researched and its not what you expect, you probably won’t try this again. But for those of you who do enjoy, it’s a lifetime experience.
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