Each social situation we expose ourselves to has its own set of rules and behaviors. This is also true of BDSM events, perhaps even moreso. A play party will have different rules at each location you may attend one. There will be established rules as well as house/location rules. There are also unspoken rules that many relationships have in place. Let's cover some of each category.

Established Rules

  1. Have a safeword or use the party safeword. If your word is different than the one set up for the party, let the Dungeon Monitors know before you play so that they can monitor for your chosen word.
  2. If extreme or edge play is planned, speak to the Dungeon Monitor to see if it is allowed to happen and so that they can be prepared.
  3. What goes on here, stays here. This one is a bit self-explanatory but many new players violate this rule the first time out. You are free to talk about what happened to you, but not who with or anything else in specifics. Most groups will say you can describe what you saw in generalities (ie. "I saw this awesome fireplay scene last night!") but better to be safe than sorry. Even identifying people who were there can be a no-no.
  4. No photography. This can be restricted to cameras only or include cell phones. For discretion sake, just leave your cell phone with your possessions.
  5. Read the posted rules for any specific rules to that play party. They are there for your protection and safety.

House Rules

If a party is held at someone's house, and a lot of times it is there are also house rules to follow. Examples include:

  1. No nudity except in designated play areas.
  2. No play except in designated areas.
  3. Don't open doors, these rooms are off limits.
  4. Smoking allowed in these areas.
  5. Alcohol rules may fluctuate depending on the type of party.
  6. Sexual play may fluctuate depending on the type of party.

Unspoken Rules

These rules can be hard to know, and many times people learn these after breaking them, especially if you are new. Take head to these unspoken rules.

  1. Do not touch. Anything. Persons, toys or other people's equipment is theirs. Submissives may not be allowed to interact with others without the Dominant's permission. Don't assume that a submissive is ignoring you, they may not be allowed to speak. If in doubt, talk to the Dominant.
  2. Play is consensual and optional. You do not have to play at a party, but if you do make sure that you both agree on what you want to be done.
  3. Uncollared submissives are not required to call all Dominants Sir/Ma'am. This goes for all over, but especially where group protocol feels heavier. You are a respectable individual first, submissive second. I believe that respect and titles are earned. (This was until I was instructed to call all Dominant's Sir/Ma'am by my Master.)

Videos on Kink Academy (affiliate)

Things NOT to do When Meeting People in a Kinky Context - Stefanos and Shay show some of the major social gaffes possible when meeting people in a kink setting such as a conference, munch, or play party. They use humor and role-play to teach some valuable lessons about respecting personal property, roles, and space.

What other rules should I include here? Any advice you would give novices as to their first play party?