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Unresolved Trauma and Trauma Play in BDSM

“Mistress, can you humiliate my race?”


“Can you laugh at me for having a small penis?


My ex-girlfriend broke up with me x years ago because I was too small and was unable to satisfy her in bed.”From time to time, I get session requests from individuals with specific kinks that were seemingly mirrored from trauma. I rarely agree to their requests. In my capacity as a Professional Dominatrix, I aim to cover the motivations and allure of trauma play as a kink in this article.  In such cases, trauma has an impact on sexuality and manifests as kink/erotic arousal. This entails intentionally utilizing kink to embody personal traumatic memories to reenact or modify past trauma through specific plays. This usually takes the form of gender play, trauma-influenced humiliation, raceplay, or reenactment of revictimization roleplays. I have had a front row seat to the pain, shame and fear that is born by people of all walks of life.



It is conventional wisdom that we are due to repeat our mistakes until we learn from them. Getting bad grades on a paper because one only started cramming the night before. Getting stuck in a vicious cycle of credit card debt due to being unable to control one’s impulse purchases.  However, the issue of repetition compulsion takes this further - individuals don't just make the same mistakes because they refuse to learn from them; they subconsciously (or sometimes, consciously) recreate past problems to bask in it. According to Freudian theory, humans have tendencies toward repeated expression of trauma, either unconsciously within the unconscious self; or consciously as a coping mechanism, or conditioned association. 


Trauma can manifest in the form of:

  • A bad breakup with a former partner

  • A particular incident of intense shame, eg getting caught masturbating by family

  • Sexual assault

  • Sexual molestation by a family member

These incidents can appear resolved on the surface, but lie deep in one’s reservoir of emotions.

What drives trauma reenactment and compulsion?

  • Regain control of narrative (or an attempt to)

  • Familiarity and lack of self-confidence

  • Emotional dysregulation

Many traumatized people expose themselves, seemingly compulsively, to situations reminiscent of the original trauma. Such kinks arise as a defence mechanism against unresolved traumas, by shutting the Pandora’s box, they partake to not address the root cause, but to just merely replay them within the context of the session. Instead of seeking emotional growth or resolvement, they downplay the root cause, emotionally stunning it through erotic arousal. Traumatized individuals end up being fixated on the trauma and struggle with incorporating new experiences towards healing, instead opting for trauma reenactments and compulsive repetition. The problem with this lies when such repeated expressions reinforces one's behaviour and becomes habitual. This creates complications in life - self-loathing, isolation/stigma or regression. In such cases, I never accept session requests for trauma play with individuals with weak resolve and control over their narratives. 


Opening Pandora’s box

Within my practice as a Professional Dominatrix, I have once explored trauma play with an individual (Let’s call him X). As mentioned in this article, retraumatization can lead to a vicious cycle of perpetual suffering and an unhealthy fixation. X had went through multiple round of therapy with a mental health professional and reference that was acquired from his therapist reported that he had managed to achieve a healthy level of self-regulation and control over his trauma.


The experience of the session brought us back to revisit X’s aged trauma in a safe, consensual and controlled environment, reenacting it on his own terms. Through reframing and manipulation of X’s past hurt, allowed him to realign his perceptions, emotions and patterns, and he felt more in control of his past ‘oppression’. The goal of trauma play wasn’t exactly kink arousal, but to promote emotional resilience and healing. This was done through a high amount of trust, communication, and negotiation from both parties; as well as being trauma-informed and having a deep understanding of human psychology.

According to Greek mythology, opening Pandora’s box unleashed all the evils of the world. But less we forget, at the bottom of it all, was hope.


NB: As a professional, I do have established non-negotiable limits when it comes to kink. Among which, are retraumatisation play, race, religion, homo/transphobia, public non-consensual play, blackmail and the likes. Contact me for a full consult.


As a Professional Dominatrix in Singapore, I also offer kink consulting for those struggling with trauma. Through a psych-based approach, I help individuals come to terms with their kinks for positive self-identification. Write to me to set up a consultative booking.


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More about our professional ethics as a Professional Dominatrix in Singapore: here 

About FemDom, Goddess Ashley: here   


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