I’m loving this article on Vice I was quoted in about how the concept of aftercare applies to vanilla sex as much as it applies to kink scenes!
For those who might not know, aftercare is an essential practice for the kink community to help facilitate a “soft landing” after an intense sexual experience.
People have different needs sexually, and that extends into what people want from aftercare. I find that the easiest and most direct way is to ask straight out. I usually say something like, “what do you need and enjoy after sex?” It’s really important to me that I offer aftercare no matter what my relationship with the person is.
Outside of the kink community, people seem to ration out kindness to partners with whom they are not in a relationship, because they are afraid that they are going to catch feelings or send out a signal that they want a relationship. It doesn’t matter how casual sex is—aftercare is about being a kind human being. Being naked with another person is a vulnerable place to be. The last thing you want to do is make someone feel used or feel used yourself. It’s really unfair to say that you’re going to carry on seeing someone and then just ghost. Most people will respect your honest answer if you’ve already decided that you don’t intend to play with them again. I think you have to deliver that message with kindness and directness and with gratitude for the experience you’ve just shared with them.
Whether it’s with a new partner or your spouse, aftercare is really the perfect chance to talk about what you loved about the experience you just shared, what in particular turned you on, what you might tweak if or when you do it again. It’s also a good time to talk about boundaries that you may have only just realized as a result of the experience itself.