CNC Kink Play 101: Learn Everything About Consensual Non-Consent

You’re not alone if you’re unsure what CNC is. You’re going to learn the definition of CNC play and get some great CNC ideas if you want to try out consensual non-consent for yourself.CNC stands for “consensual non-consent.” Of course, that might seem a bit oxymoronic if you’re not familiar with CNC kink. With CNC, you’ve previously consented to the idea of scenes that you don’t expressly consent to. In those scenes, your partner might take you by force.

Because of this, some people associate CNC kink with rape kink. However, forced sex is only one type of CNC kink, as you’ll learn if you keep reading.

These scenes involve the top or dominant who is using force or coercion and the sub or bottom as the “victim.” Some people know CNC by another name, ravishment. They might discuss the ravisher and ravished person.

The difference between actually being forced to do something and consensual non-consent is that you agreed to the act previously. It may be that you’ve given blanket consent for these activities or have temporarily agreed to a CNC kink scene.

Learn: What sexual consent is.

In short, CNC is a type of erotic role play. It just might be more extreme than other bedroom role playing.

Without that prior consent, it would just be nonconsensual or forced, not CNC. Discussing a future scene also lets you negotiate boundaries. It might be CNC, but some things may still be a hard (or soft) limit for you.

Types of CNC Kink

CNC isn’t just rape roleplay, although that’s a common form of CNC kink.

  • Rape fantasy – a person is forced to perform sexual acts
  • Somnophilia – sexual acts while one person is asleep
  • Kidnapping – someone is abducted and/or held against their will
  • Blackmail – the “victim” must do as the blackmailer demands to avoid unpleasant circumstances
  • Selling – a person is sold for sexual or manual labor against their will
  • Hypnosis – A person is hypnotised and used for erotic purposes

Some people even consider 24/7 or TPE relationships a form of consensual nonconsent because the sub/slave gives consent before handing over control of potentially every part of their life to their partner.

Is CNC Roleplay Unethical?

Some people are staunchly opposed to CNC. You’ll see several main criticisms of consensual non-consent.

  • It makes light of actual trauma, including sexual assault.
  • It’s too easy to overstep boundaries and cause real trauma.
  • Submissives cannot leave CNC relationships.
  • Consensual non-consent is usually not considered legal, so one partner could face serious consequences if the other is harmed during it.

These critiques all point out how consensual non-consent can be risky. But all BDSM is risky, which is why some people abide by the Risk Aware Consensual Kink (RACK) framework.

You absolutely shouldn’t enter into any scene without recognizing risk. Using safe words and taking other safety precautions, which we include before we get into any CNC examples, shows you’re risk-aware. And because it’s one of the riskier kinks, it falls under the umbrella of edge play with activities such as needles, suspension, and knife play. Edge play is completely different from edging your partner when they are close to orgasm.

Finally, objections to this kink based on the fact that some people have experienced trauma ignores two crucial points. First, some people use CNC to process the trauma they’ve been through. Second, this is a type of play, not the real thing.

Communication Is Key

This is also the time to choose whether you use a safe word or not. Although you may want to forego using a safe word because it doesn’t feel as real, we still advise it. During CNC scenes, you may say “No” or “Stop” because you’re playing along. So you need a different safe word to use when you really want things to end.

By now, you can probably see that while consent isn’t apparent in CNC, a lot of communication takes place before any action happens. These example BDSM contracts are great for general BDSM negotiations that you might include in your CNC kink, including:

But when it comes to CNC, you can explicitly discuss activities that may not come up in more routine play. This might include:

Your conversations can delve into what you feel comfortable, aroused by and have already agreed to beforehand. For example, slapping might be okay, but punching isn’t. Your right arm might be free for twisting, but the left might be recovering from an injury. Cheap panties are fair play, while more expensive lingerie is off-limits.

Similarly, you might want to avoid certain words that you find to be a major turn-off or erogenous zones or activities that might actually trigger you. It’s a good idea to discuss whether and where you’re okay with your partner leaving marks (scratches, bites, bruises, etc) and any implements that are off-limits.

Practical concerns such as the beginning and the end of the scene are especially important with CNC. Entering a room, donning a costume, or using a certain word can all begin the scene. Obviously, a safe word can end it, but what will mark the end of the session if no one uses their safe word?

Even with prior consent, you need to fully trust your partner. In these scenes, you might physically resist and could get hurt if your partner isn’t careful. And if you decide not to use a safe word, it’s even more important that your partner knows how far they can go without causing real harm, either physical or mental/emotional.

Related: Get more sexual communication tips for talking about sex.

The Risks of CNC Kink

Cuts, abrasions, chafing, bruises, burns, dehydration, exhaustion, and even broken bones are all real risks of consensual non-consent, which can get much more intense than rough sex.

These injuries can impact both people, especially if there’s a physical struggle. And individual health concerns play an important role, too. Blood sugar or pressure can disrupt a scene and give you quite a scare.

However, the risks of CNC go well beyond the physical. A person’s trust or safety may be jeopardized. It’s possible that you’ll look at your partner differently after a CNC scene, even if it was your idea. Intense scenes can also bring up traumatic memories.

These activities could trigger anxiety or panic attacks. You might freeze or forget your safe word, which makes a trustworthy partner that much more important.

Read: How to deal with sexual anxiety.

And if you’re the one who has ravished someone else, you might have negative feelings about how you could have done that to someone you care about.

The best way to minimize these risks is, you guessed it, communication! Plan out every detail of your first CNC scene and play it out without deviating. Think of it like scripting a movie before you act it out.

As you get more comfortable with CNC, you won’t have to figure out all of the details. But doing so the first time gives you a chance to prepare just in case your mind or body responds in unexpected ways.

Why Do I Like Being Forced?

Like many sexual and kink activities, it’s hard to say why someone might be into the idea and likely impossible to find a reason that applies to everyone. Instead, we can suggest a few reasons why someone might be drawn to CNC kink.

Primal sex – Consensual non-consent is one way to explore your more primal side. A dominant partner can feel powerful, while the partner giving up control may enjoy having attention lavished on them.

You get to give up control – For those who find some sort of release by giving up control (one reason why some people identify as subs), consensual non-consent might just be the ultimate form of giving up control – because someone takes it from you.

It helps to build trust – You might find consensual non-consent strengthens your BDSM or kinky relationship because of the trust it requires.

Sexual blame avoidance – Some submissives have found that CNC kink helps them push past boundaries because they’re “forced” to do things they wouldn’t ordinarily agree to. Researchers call this “sexual blame avoidance” [1, 2].

Work through trauma – Others find CNC helps them work through trauma. It can be therapeutic. It’s a safe way to work through dark thoughts, feelings, sexual fantasies, or experiences.

Warning: Although it can be therapeutic in many ways, BDSM is not therapy and is not a replacement for therapy with a licensed therapist.

However, that doesn’t mean that you need a dark experience or past to be interested in CNC.

You don’t even need to be into BDSM to enjoy elements of CNC. Rape and forced sex fantasies are incredibly common according to one study by Justin Lehmiller. Lehmiller found that 61% of women had ever fantasized about being taken by force and 24% of women often had that type of fantasy [3].

That’s not limited to women, either. When it comes to men, 54% had ever had a similar fantasy. 68% of nonbinary folks reported having such fantasies.

While not everyone wants to live out every fantasy, some people are bound to want to experiment and bring things out of the realm of imagination.

CNC Examples

While you don’t need to play any roles in your consensual non-consent scenes, role playing can add to the experience. Here are just a few CNC ideas to get you started. One way to get the most out of these roles is to play them in fantasy or Sci-Fi settings.

Alien Abduction

Aliens might not really abduct people to anal probe them, but that doesn’t have to stop you and a partner from playing out a similar scene. So grab a bright light, a cold surface, your favorite restraints, and a butt plug to make your Sci-Fi fantasies (or nightmares) come true. If you don’t have a butt plug at your disposal, you can just fall back on anal fingering.

Taken by Spouse

In this scene, “Not tonight, honey” isn’t a good enough answer. One partner takes the other, perhaps interrupting them as they work in the kitchen.

A Pretend Fight

Fighting can flood your body with adrenaline and arouse your body in a way that makes you sexually aroused. It’s one reason why angry sex and making up after a fight is so satisfying.

But you don’t have to wait for a fight to start if you start one yourself. With CNC, it can even get physical before it turns sexual.

Officer and Citizen

These roles can easily be adapted for CNC kink. For example, an officer who pulls over a driver can coerce sexual favors to avoid a ticket. And someone who’s already in cuffs has no choice in the matter.

Switch things up by having the victim resist, forcing the officer to tie them up.

Related: Enhancing Your Sex Life with Light Bondage

Burglar with Homeowner

This one’s classic. Someone breaks in and ties the homeowner to the chair. Or maybe they slip between the sheets, pretending to be a spouse coming home late from work.

This is a particularly hot femdom idea when the burglar is a female.

Sleeping Beauty

This classic fairy tale is actually a form of CNC if you think about it. In your scene, it can be a bit more risque with the prince/princess (or someone with more devious intentions) waking someone with a lot more than a kiss.

But you can also subvert it by having the “sleeping” partner wake up in the morning as their partner steps up and turns the tables.

Learn: How to have hot morning sex.

Boss and Employee

Here you have another classic role that works well. If you want that raise, you’ll have to make something raise. This CNC scenario also adds the risk of getting caught.

Doctor and Patient

If you’re a fan of CNC and medical play, look no further than this idea. When the “patient” is half-naked on a hospital gown, they’re in a vulnerable position. This only intensifies if someone’s got their foot in stirrups or is strapped down and cannot stop what’s happening.

In fact, the doctor might be forced to restrain someone who won’t cooperate or subject the patient to unusual treatment (spanking your man and other impact play do the trick).

Kidnapper and Victim

These roles are the perfect combination of physical resistance, bondage, surprise, and control–all things that make for a great CNC scenario. Plus, you can prolong the hostage situation for a more intense scene.

Mugger and Walker

What would be a normal theft turns into something else when the mugger can’t resist themselves.

Slave Auction

This works best if you’ve got a few kinky friends who will play along. Showing someone off as chattel can play into a humiliation kink. You could play owner of an actual animal ala pony play where props such as bits, crops, or leashes work well. After the auction, your partner is handed over to someone else, perhaps a stranger (at least, to their knowledge).

Rejected Affections

One person goes in for a kiss while their partner tries to duck away. Frustrated and not taking no for an answer, the rejected suitor takes what they want. When you’re playing this role, you might “argue” that one person was a tease.

Enhancing Your CNC Scene

It can be hard enough to figure out how to put some CNC ideas into play. For some people, CNC is all about the actions and no role playing is necessary, but you may still need some prep. For example, you might need some tools if you want to try out erotic hypnosis aka hypnokink, but fondling a sleeping partner or taking someone on the kitchen relies more on the element of surprise.

So for consensual non-consent scenarios that also involve role playing, the following tips may help.

Nail Your Role

No one expects you to have professional acting chops, but a little effort goes a long way when role playing. If you want to fully immerse yourself in a CNC scene, think beyond costumes.  You can start by wearing a different scent, so you won’t smell like you normally do.

Consider how you can change your voice, not just using a different voice but changing the words and grammar you use or your cadence to make things more believable. Drafting a script can help you prepare for your role.

Set the Scene

Next, consider ways you can change the setting. For example, you could drive your blindfolded partner around for a while before returning to your own home or use dark curtains or blankets to make a room feel more like a basement.

Of course, consensual non-consent doesn’t need to be a super involved DIY project. These are just a few ideas to get your creative juices flowing to make the scene as immersive as possible.

Related: 15 best places to have sex.

Use Props

Props can really sell your performance and the entire scenario. You’ll probably find some goodies in your nightstand. However, you can grab items from around the house and repurpose them for the session. For example, the handle of a spoon can feel like the edge of a blade to someone who’s blindfolded.

Do You Need to Physically Overpower Someone in CNC?

Although the physical struggle is often an important aspect of consensual nonconsent scenes, it’s not always necessary. The element of surprise can work in your favor if you don’t have the physical advantage over your partner. Starting a scene while they sleep is another great option for CNC

Removing your partner’s sight with a blindfold also helps things work in your favor. If you can tie someone up quickly, they will be helpless against your advances, too.

Of course, all of this relies upon the prior consent to CNC in general and specific acts such as bondage or sex while someone’s asleep.

Avoid Unwanted Attention

Obviously, if someone comes across what looks like forced sex or a kidnapping, they may call the police or personally intervene. Even if you can explain what you’re doing, the mood will likely be ruined.

It’s best to keep your kink in private or places with others who would understand and wouldn’t mind participating in such activities. Play parties and dungeons might be an option.

Remember – Just because someone is in a kinky space doesn’t mean they consent to participate in others’ activity, even if it’s only as an onlooker.

Creativity can also go a long way toward keeping your cover. A threat can keep someone successfully quiet. A coat slung over an arm can disguise a weapon (or even a fake one as it may be in a CNC scene).

You could lure your unsuspecting partner to a hotel room with a sexy text message. Another option is to only play out a small portion of the scene in public before moving to a more private space.

Next, be as prepared as possible. This might mean scooping out a place where you plan to “kidnap” your partner or stocking your vehicle with all the supplies you need. The more skillful you are, the less time you’ll spend in the public eye and the more intense the scene becomes for your partner.

However, even if you’re playing in private, you could run into trouble if someone overhears sounds of a struggle. Consider ways to minimize noise, including soundproofing, cover noise, or using gags to silence yells. You can even work a gag into your scene. For example, gagging someone with a handkerchief or panties or running rope through their mouth.

Of course, you need to make sure your gagged partner can still communicate their safe word in other ways if they are restricted from speaking clearly.

Don’t forget things that can draw unwanted attention after the fact, including bruises or other marks. If you’re concerned, avoid these marks entirely or keep them beneath clothing and not on the face or limbs.

Finish With Aftercare

Aftercare is an essential element of many BDSM interactions. It refers to everything a person needs to return to equilibrium and can include anything from cuddles to Gatorade to complete silence.

With something as intense as CNC, aftercare might be even more critical.

Because aftercare is personal and can take so many forms, it’s essential to figure out what aftercare you or your partner need. Aftercare for CNC kink might look different than your usual aftercare when dealing with the effects of sub drop or dom drop.

If you didn’t know what CNC is before now, you can decide whether it’s right for you–or breathe a sigh of relief to know that your interest in CNC play is more common and normal than you might think. And if you’re interested in this kink, you can try out a CNC idea or two from above as long as you keep safety in mind.

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