Note: This was designed as a guide. Please adapt it to your specific needs and feel free to link or use it wherever you like with credit.
Be sure that, where applicable, these questions are asked of both the bunny and the rigger.
Consent and Pre-Scene Negotiation:
-How are you doing today? Are you happy and safe to be tied?
-Are temporary rope marks alright? How easily does the bunny mark?
-Discuss rigging/bunnying experience (i.e. For bunny: have you been tied before- if so, what ties? For rigger: how much/what sort of rigging experience do you have? For both: consider getting references from others that the rigger/bunny has worked with)
-What kind of experience are you aiming for? Are you interested in incorporating sexual elements? (i.e. intense scene with subspace, primarily for practicing technique, incorporating rope into a larger scene (in which case also negotiate any other types of play))
For scene negotiations see: https://fetlife.com/users/2193608/posts/1812310 or http://withinreality.com/wp/negotiation-checklist/
-Is the bunny likely to go into space? If so, how should the rigger respond? What does going into/coming out of space look like for the bunny?
-Discuss hard and soft limits.
-How much time is available for the scene?
-Are subbing/topping-out or sub/top-drop a possibility? Are any atypical reactions probable? (i.e. shaking post scene, inability to communicate) If so, how should the rigger respond?
-Are there any areas of the body or “sweet spots” that should be avoided?
(i.e. neck, lower back, face, breasts)
-Are there any words/phrases/other that should be avoided? (i.e. daddy, slut)
-Are there any physical conditions/limitations to be aware of?
(i.e. diabetes, poor circulation, low/high blood pressure, asthma, sprains, sore muscles, limited motion, cramping)
-Are there any mental health considerations? (i.e. claustrophobia, anxiety)
-Are any parties taking medication? If so, have them on hand.
-Are there any allergies? (i.e. natural fiber rope, bees)
-When were food/drink last consumed and does anyone need to use the restroom?
-Have any drugs including alcohol been consumed recently?
-Discuss aftercare needs and exchange contact information for a post-scene check in and/or debrief.
(i.e. cuddles or space, do you get cold, massage, sitting/lying down, talking/silent; discussing the scene later that evening, in two days)
-Discuss and agree on a safeword (i.e. red/yellow/green stoplight system)
-Explain dangers of playing with rope (i.e. nerve damage, loss of circulation), explain warning signs (i.e. numbness, tingling, weakness, sharp pain), and explain the importance of alerting the rigger immediately. Discuss a check-in system (i.e. call and response hand squeeze)
-Explain that untying takes a few minutes and ask your bunny to give you XXXX (tie dependent, but 5 minutes is typical) amount of warning before they have reached their limit (when possible).
-Explain that in the event of emergency (i.e. building fire), indication of risk of damage, request for immediate release, or loss of consciousness, the rope will be cut.
-Riggers: show your bunny your cutting tool. Bunnies: ask to see your rigger’s cutting tool and feel free to ask to inspect any other gear to be used.
Pre-Scene Equipment Check (have within arm’s reach):
-EMT shears or other cutting tool(s)
-Full scene’s rope and any other props (i.e. yoga mat, pillows)
-mobile phone on silent
-water, food, and sugar (chocolate is great and bananas can help cramping)
-blanket and aftercare space
After you’ve done your negotiation and equipment check, take a moment to reconnect and set the tone for the scene. I would suggest having a few sips of water or tea and taking several moments for both rigger and bunny to stretch. This is also a good time for everyone to use the restroom, remove any jewelry, tie back hair, etc.
-Breathing: Are they doing it?
? Is the chest rising and falling? Can the bunny speak?
-Circulation: Is it happening?
? Check for changes in skin colour and or temperature, call and response hand squeeze.
-In a scene appropriate manner, check in with your bunny about their physical and mental comfort (keep in mind any discussed limitations). (i.e. How does the tension feel? Is the pressure alright on your ankle? Are you going to be able to hold this position for the next 10 minutes? Non-verbal call and response hand squeeze.)
-Thank your bunny/rigger and attend to immediate aftercare needs.
-If space needs to be used by others, quickly clean up area and return to aftercare.
-Inspect and recoil rope. Clean if necessary.
-Check in and/or debrief with your bunny/rigger at the pre-negotiated time.
Bunnies: Don’t be afraid to speak up if something doesn’t feel right physically or mentally (though it’s nice to do this within the tone of the scene).
Riggers: Don’t be afraid to fix your mistakes or make adjustments based on your bunny’s feedback (also try to do it in a scene appropriate way).
Both bunnies and riggers should be comfortable. If clothing is involved, make sure it’s conducive to your scene. Avoid underwire bras and overly tight clothing. Your rope is less likely to slip around on natural fibers.
If you’re playing with someone for the first time, it’s always a good idea to make sure you have a buddy in the space, and/or make sure your partner has an emergency contact number for you.
Thank you for taking the time to read through this; you just made the world a little safer and more fun 🙂
Printable PDF Rope Scene Negotiation Checklist