Mental bondage

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Corner time, an example of mental bondage traditionally used in parenting.

Mental bondage is a BDSM term that means the restriction of movement without using physical means. It is not a type of bondage, because bondage is understood to mean the use of physical restraints.

Mental bondage works by obedience alone. The bottom is commanded, either verbally, via body language, or implicitly (they know what is expected of them instinctively or because they've been instructed on earlier occasions before), to assume a certain body position, posture, or stance, and to remain still in this pose until they are given permission to leave it.

Mental bondage works on the principle that the subject knows they will will face worse punishment should they fail to get into the prescribed position, or should they move or leave it without permission.

The Gorean slave positions are examples of this, but basically every time-out such as corner time could be considered a form of mental bondage. Even confinement to a room or house without physically locking the person up, such as in grounding, could be seen as a form of mental bondage.

Mental bondage in film[edit]

An example of mental bondage in a mainstream film is in the movie Secretary, where Edward tests Lee by commanding her to sit in his chair without moving her hands or feet until he returns.

Mental bondage in spanking[edit]

A way of combining mental bondage and spanking is by putting the spankee in the desired spanking position and telling him or her not to move out of this position. This means, for example in the OTK position:

  • No reaching back with either hand. Hands must remain in front of the spankee.
  • No kicking, bending, tucking up or crossing the legs.
  • No wriggling.

See also[edit]