What is kink counselling? Can BDSM help one’s Mental health? 

Photo credit – Charlotte Douleur

An Interview with Mistress Viper – What is kink counselling? Can BDSM help one’s Mental health? 

Hello again, Kinky Ones! 

BDSM and mental health can be a controversial topic of discussion, with many conflicting views, opinions and beliefs. For example, many kinksters believe that BDSM can be used to help ones mental health. That being said, there are many people outside the BDSM community who strongly believe that BDSM is a mental disorder.

So who is right here?

In this interview I had the chance to ask Mistress Viper what her thoughts were on this subject matter. This is a must-read for anyone interested in BDSM and mental health. Before we get started, please allow me to introduce you to the awe-inspiring – Mistress Viper! 

Introducing Mistress Viper 

I’m Mistress Viper, a lifestyle and professional Dominatrix working primarily out of London. I offer real time and online domination specialising in humiliation and the psychology of Domination. I’ve been a member of the kink scene since the moment I found it about seven years ago and I’m finally in the privileged position to turn my artform into my career. 

1. I hear through the grapevine that you will soon be offering kink counselling, tell us more about this. For example, what exactly is kink counselling? What does it consist of? 

Photo credit – Charlotte Douleur

Kink counselling seems a wild concept to both those in the mental health and the kink communities, but to me remarkably sane. Everyone has traumas, we all have issues to work through and I’ve found in my training as a counsellor that any mention of kink or BDSM leads to a significant portion of patients being chastised simply for getting their ‘rocks off’, I know very few mental health specialists who are kink aware, and those I do are no longer practicing.

I saw an opportunity to serve my community, and enable others to understand, and advocate for themselves. Kink counselling in a nutshell is receiving mental health based talking therapy, such as cognitive behavioural therapy (My second favourite kind of CBT) with a provider who is not only well versed in Kink, but is able to discuss other mental health issues and how they may impact, or be formed by our kinks, fetishes and even sometimes our traumas.

It allows you to look at your overall life, and your sex life through a non-judgemental window with someone trained in the nuances of human thought. 

2. What skills and qualifications do you need to become a kink counsellor? 

That’s a wonderful question and I wish I had a more specific answer. I would say it’s much the same as any mental health provider, you want someone who has an education and qualification in the field, for me that was studying mental health during my undergraduate degree, then eventually into getting qualifications in trauma specific counselling, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and talking therapies more generally.

As for the kink part, I would say someone well versed in mental health and also respects that BDSM, or kink more generally is going to be a huge part of most kinksters lives and isn’t a direct correlation to trauma or mental health issues they’ve experienced. 

3. Do you use any healing practices in your BDSM play?

I absolutely hope so! I think BDSM generally is a wonderful way to heal our souls, to listen to our deep dark desires and act on them without judgement. I’ve known kink to be a therapy for many, and even for some to process trauma without realising. I approach Dominance in a similar way I do as a mental health provider. I will ask specific questions, look for honest answers and try to learn what makes a person tick, once you know how someone’s mind works you can get into helping them build on some missing connections, undo some past issues and on very rare occasions, knock a big ego down a couple pegs. 

4. Can BDSM be used to help one’s mental well being?

I truly believe BDSM practices are healing in and of themselves, it allows us to work through so many facets of our own minds and through either dominance or submission, detach from our outward preconceptions and just be human beings.

I often refer to ‘subspace’ as a way for those who have extreme pressures in their day-to-day lives to essentially let go of stress, for however long they need and via that detachment give the mind a little rest so that you can go back to the rat race with a little more energy and renewed way of seeing things. 

5. I’ve heard people say that BDSM has helped them heal from trauma, what is your take on this?

kink counselling Mistress Viper
Photo credit – Charlotte Douleur

I’ve seen it happen! I’ve seen women with confidence or self-esteem issues change their self-view through Domination, I’ve known submissive’s who like role play that reflect a trauma they’ve lived and some who’ve dealt with jealousy issues via being dominated with other submissives at the same time.

In my time as a Domme, I’ve helped a submissive battle anorexia as a lifestyle submissive through strict orders, strong encouragement and gentle awareness of the traumas route cause, it took us a year but eventually they asked to go out in public and eat a meal together – one of my proudest days as a Domme so far. 

6. There are many people outside the BDSM community who strongly believe that BDSM is a mental disorder. How would you respond to such claims?  

How would I like too? I’d tell them to fuck off, or kindly swivel on my strap on. There is no (current) research at all indicating that BDSM practices are in any way linked with mental health disorders. My hope is that these nay-sayers will fall by the wayside into insignificance with the people who believed being transgender, or having dyed hair was a disorder. 

Sadly, there will always be people out there who see anyone ‘other’ as the problem or as incorrect, in much the way the LGBTQIA+ community, feminists and activists generally have experienced. I do however believe that through awareness, careful conversations and us as a community not falling for the trap, will shift these notions over time. 

7. Lastly, how did you come up with the name Mistress Viper?

My name is a good description of who I am. Vipers are small, delicate and very ornately decorated snakes that look beautiful; however, they are lethal, some of the most dangerous snakes in the world are vipers!

I do have to admit I didn’t choose the name though; Viper is actually a nickname stemming from my personal life. I’m a qualified DWA (Dangerous and Wild Animals) handler, specialising in snakes and even have a few ‘pet’ snakes at home. I was given the nickname when I started keeping snakes and got my licence for the dangerous ones, Viper is a moniker for either side of my life, its genuinely who I am. 

There we have it, Kinky Ones! 

I hope you enjoyed reading this interview in relation to what is kink counselling? And can BDSM help one’s Mental health? A Gargantuan Shout-Out to the mental health specialist – Mistress Viper! I thank you hugely for taking time from your busy schedule to answer my questions.

Check out Mistress Viper’s links to Her social media, contact etc, so you don’t miss out on the latest! 

https://linktr.ee/mistressviperrr and her NEW website: www.houseofviper.co.uk.

Photo credit – Charlotte Douleur

Kinksters! Let’s support each other – so please SHARE this interview with other like-minded/open-minded individuals. Also, feel free to hit me up on Twitter @podofeleus and Instagram @Podopheleus.

Much Kink Love,

Podopheleus 🖤

https://linktr.ee/Podopheleus

Read more articles and interviews in connection with mental health here.

The Stigma of the Submissive Male by Thimble

I wish I wasn’t – A kink and mental health story from Manlock

Dr Das – submissive men, kinks & fetishes – Interview!

4 ways to help overcome Sub-Drop

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