The Next Step

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Edward McMullen has been a couple’s therapist for almost twenty years. In his practice, he has met and worked with a lot of couples. So, he’s very aware of the generational change in intimate practices. Mr. McMullen is also a bondage enthusiast; he has been practicing Shibari for the last fifteen years. That’s why we decided to talk to him about the next step for Shibari. Here’s what he said.

“When I talk about a generational change regarding intimate practices, what I mean is that couples today are not having the same bedroom experiences couples did in the previous generation. People used to consider as dirty or inappropriate for a respectable marriage things that couples now see as acceptable and even desirable. In short, at the same time that BDSM practices have gained acceptance, they have become vanilla. What I mean by this is that bondage, for example, is now a regular part of the repertoire of any vanilla couple, although in a simpler version than the one used by bondage enthusiasts.”

“From this point of view, the next step is making Shibari easy, accessible, and inclusive.”

“Let’s face it, Shibari is a complicated practice. Additionally, it requires special equipment and a lot of training. Otherwise, the risk of an emergency is too high. We have to find ways to make it easier. Now, I’m not saying that someday suspension will be easy; that’s impossible. What I’m saying is that we should promote a simpler version of bondage, one that any couple can try.”

“As for accessibility and inclusivity, I think Shibari should welcome all kinds of people. For example, I had a blind patient once, and I couldn’t stop thinking about how she would experience bondage. In an era of inclusivity, we cannot stay behind.”

What do you think of the ideas of Edward McMullen?

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