What do you think of when you think of aftercare? It’s not something that often gets discussed a lot, but I think it should. Aftercare is a broad term but applies to the check-in and care you give your partner after sex or other intimate acts. It’s most often associated with BDSM play, when sex acts can be taboo, consensually painful, or emotionally charged.


Let’s say you and your partner love a good spanking session. They love being spanked, and you love dishing it out. After it’s over, and they’re sufficiently spanked and spent, they might be feeling a few different ways, and you might as well.

In that scenario, the first thing you might do is ask if your partner would like anything for their ass. Do they need you to rub it? Would they like ice? This is an important step following pain play, or any sex act where discomfort might have occurred.

Take Care of the Physical

Taking care of the physical elements also includes things such as going to bathroom to pee to prevent UTIs, or reminding your partner to do so. It can also look like offering water to stay hydrated, or even a snack. Would your partner like a massage?

 You also might see if they’d like to be cuddled or held. Some people may prefer their space after an exhausting or intense sex act. However, it can also be reassuring for people to know that their partner is there for them in softer ways, such as cuddling or spooning. Everyone is different, so again – ask!

Check In Emotionally

Another aspect of aftercare is checking in emotionally. Asking your partner how they’re feeling or what they thought of the sex itself is a great way to let them know you’re open to communication and care about their feelings. This applies to both the bottom/top or dominant/submissive roles.

Hanging out and just relaxing after sex is also a part of aftercare. Enjoying each other outside of physical intimacy is a great way to bond and recharge after play. Put on a TV show or some good music. Getting back to “regular” vanilla things like these may be especially appreciated after power-play scenarios, where one person is in a particularly vulnerable position.

Care is Essential

Keep in mind that these tips do not just apply for kinky sex and BDSM play. Sex can often be a vulnerable or draining experience for people, regardless of kink level. Aftercare does not have to be set in stone or a step-by-step process, but rather a general communication and care that follows sex or other intimate acts with a person.