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I went to a kink club and felt safer than ever

I stepped into this year with the aim to push myself outside my comfort zone. Sex clubs are something I’d heard of, but never really thought about going to one until recently. Not really for fun or pleasure, but more out of curiosity, to see what it was all about.

Photography (self-portrait): Oliwia Koczorowska

London is brimming with opportunities, so finding the right space was relatively easy. The club I went to is regarded as a sex-positive environment in which people can experiment with BDSM and fetish practices. The parties encourage experimentation, while destigmatising kink and providing a safe space to explore your sexuality and desires. Sex and Relationship Coach, Ness Cooper from The Sex Consultant, says that there is no simple answer as to where kink desires come from. "Many are made up of a combination of biopsychosocial elements that are unique to the individual," she says.


Cooper indicates that if you are new to kinks, you should start slowly and "it is okay not to act out your kinks in real life and to keep some of them as fantasies". She suggests finding a play partner with whom you feel comfortable sharing your kinks because it can be a vulnerable experience.


Some kink clubs require membership to attend, however many frequently host non-member socials to give potential members a taste of what to expect, so, leaving my comfort zone, I decided to give it a shot.


Stressing about an outfit to wear for the event was a problem in itself. I searched for something remotely acceptable for such an occasion whilst still feeling comfortable in my choice of attire. The dress code in some places can be quite strict - think latex, PVC or leather only and not the kind you would wear for drinks with your mates.


However, once I found out that I could pretty much wear whatever I wanted to this event, the dangerously short vinyl dress from ASOS that made me sweat like nothing else has ever before, was quickly sent back.


To be honest, I think I was more concerned about what I was wearing rather than where I was actually going. While there may have been no dress code, I did not want to be the only one wearing 'muggle' clothes. I found a happy medium and opted for a leather-on-leather look, consisting of a blazer, skirt and boots.


A sudden nervousness I had not felt before hit me on the train there. I was on the verge of turning around and running back to the underground, fearful that I would not be allowed in for some reason and terrified of what lay behind the doors.


I had to return home in a last-minute panic because I had forgotten my ID, but eventually, an hour later, I rocked up to the secret London location wearing my double leather look. And boy did I feel overdressed.


The first thing you notice upon arriving is how heavy the beat of the music is, it almost transported me to a different dimension.



After what seemed like hours in the queue for the cloakroom and the bar, I finally had the opportunity to take a proper look around. The venue was smaller than I had anticipated, but it was buzzing with life.


However, it was not what I expected from one of London’s most famous kink clubs, and if it were not for the rule posters by the door, I would think I was in a regular club.


The smoke, which only grew stronger throughout the night, added a layer of mystery to the space, as well as anonymity, which is heavily enforced by the organisers. There are no photos, videos, or sound recordings permitted, allowing guests to explore their sexuality in a safe space.


I was pleasantly surprised to see such a diverse group of people of all ages, young and old, all looking for a judgment-free haven. You know when you go to a regular club and everyone’s desperately trying to pull off their best dance moves? Not here. Everyone is being themselves; there is no bravado or attempts to mimic someone else's moves to look better. Each guest seemed to be a unique individual, at ease in their own skin, whether fully clothed or half-naked. It felt like a completely judgement-free zone from the moment I walked in.


Cooper believes that these events can be important for many when it comes to exploring kinks. "The environment also reduces shame and stigma associated with kink, which can be prevalent outside of these types of events," she adds. "Always act out kinks consensually, and use safe words and limits to establish how far you are willing to go."


While the music wasn’t to my taste (I’m guilty of enjoying cheesy pop and songs I can sing to), I spent the majority of the night either trying to dance or in the smoking area, taking in the atmosphere and the experience to the best of my ability.


Photography (self-portrait): Oliwia Koczorowska

With the event only being a social, it was much more 'normal' than I initially expected. For someone completely new to the scene, in my mind, I pictured scenes from Rated R films mixed in with thoughts of 'What would my parents think?'.


And while I witnessed a couple getting way friskier than most would on your average night out, it felt natural yet still intimate even with dozens of other people dancing the night away around them.


The night felt like a celebration of inclusivity, consent and sexual desires. It was a refreshing change from the societal pressure to conceal one’s out-of-the-ordinary needs.


Cooper emphasises that: "Human sexuality is an important part of our overall wellbeing, and when we are unable to express this consensually, it can lead to our mental wellbeing overall being affected, such as depression."


To my surprise, I thoroughly enjoyed the event - not only because of the sex aspect but also because, for once, I did not have to worry about creepy guys pestering me or someone potentially spiking my drink.


I left the event buzzing with excitement from this new experience, knowing I would again return. It not only helped me understand the kink scene and kinks in general, but it also taught me that there is no such thing as 'normal'. There are over seven billion people on this planet, each being a unique individual with different preferences, so who’s to say what’s acceptable and what isn’t?


This is from the Kindred. Identity issue, out now. Purchase the copy through the link here.

 

Keep an eye out for an interview with Adreena Angela - a London based dominatrix and the host of the women-only event One Night, one of the most renowned play/kink parties out there - coming soon!