The present study sought to investigate how individuals in BDSM or kinky relationships leveraged communication technologies to maintain their sexual relationships. From an analysis of 321 open-ended survey responses from 162 participants, results indicated that technology was disinhibiting, particularly in negotiation, fantasy exchange, and channel selection, multimodality within checking in, planning, foreplay, and preferring face-to-face sexual communication and activity, relational maintenance, particularly within 24/7 hierarchical relationships and LDRs, as well as changes in sexual communication mediums with relational progress. These patterns emphasized that technology use, common in increasingly multimodal sexual relationships, provided a means for reductions in the perception of threat typically experienced in sexual communication by increased disinhibition. As one participant said, “Sometimes it’s easier to type things than to say them”. Findings are discussed in light of extensions to the online disinhibition effect in sexual minority relationships and sexual communication in increasingly multimodal relationships. Limitations and recommendations for future research are discussed.
Sexuality and Culture – Springer Journals
Published: May 30, 2018
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