Sometime in the late ‘00s, I was visiting Toronto for the annual Feminist Porn Awards produced by the indie sex shop Good For Her. The local queer scene always turned out for this international gathering of sex workers and filmmakers. Some Bay Area colleagues and I were at an after-hours warehouse play party thrown by a leather gear designer. Porn stars and perverts of all kinds had been spanking and fucking for hours when it finally came time to close down the venue. In true community form, we were all chipping in, helping to wipe down furniture with MadaCide and collect empty plastic cups. As the music slowly turned down and the lights slowly came up, a strange noise caught everyone’s attention.
It was the sound of a powerful stream hitting concrete. More specifically, a stream colliding with a puppy pad laid down on the venue’s floor.
It was the sound of a powerful stream hitting concrete. More specifically, a stream colliding with a puppy pad laid down on the venue’s floor. As we all turned, we were treated to the night’s final fantastic sight: Judy Minx, an audaciously femme Parisian porn star in her early twenties, standing, stark naked except for chunky platforms heels and pink pigtail bows, her skinny legs spread, peeing all over the absorbant chuck she had lovingly placed on the ground.
Once Judy was certain she had the attention of everyone in the warehouse, she put on her best girlie pout and loudly proclaimed, “Mommy! I couldn’t hold it anymore!”
When anyone mentions watersports, this is always the first image that pops into my mind. And that’s saying something, because I have administered a hell of a lot of golden showers in my time, and personally guzzled enough piss to fill an Olympic pool.
Judy’s adorable stunt has stuck with me because it encapsulates everything wonderful about piss play.
Primarily, there is the transgression of polite society. In contemporary western cultures and many other places on the planet, one of the first steps on the path of human development into mature adults is learning where and how to relieve ourselves. Indeed, this is one of the first training steps we take care of when we’re domesticating pets into our households.
In contemporary western cultures and many other places on the planet, one of the first steps on the path of human development into mature adults is learning where and how to relieve ourselves.
Unlike our animal friends, once humans can eliminate without the assistance of caregivers and diapers, we are always supposed to do it in private, in gendered postures, using the civic infrastructure of plumbing, cleaning ourselves with paper products (unless you’re smart enough to have a bidet!) From then on, if we pee ourselves by accident it is deeply humiliating. If we urinate on the side of the road rather than an inconvenient pit stop, on the side of a trail instead of a foul porta-potty, or in a back alley instead of waiting in endless bar toilet lines, we’re considered rude, gross, uncivilized.
When I think of piss play, I think of release. Letting loose. I think of refusing to clench my body unnaturally when it’s sending me a perfectly organic signal. I think of the ability to override pointless social mores. I think about the power of the erotic to transform a taboo, and all the shame and social control that comes with it, into pleasure and intimacy and thrills.
The fact that something repulsive or impolite could become a tasty and euphoria inducing turn-on when it emerges from the genitals of someone you adore, someone you worship: that’s the magic of BDSM.
Second, Judy understood the magic of bodily fluids. That when you change the context of your everyday bodily functions, you transform waste into something extraordinary. Most of us urinate routinely, all day every day. Yet when Judy peed in front of everyone, she turned her body into a spectacle. She was playing with our propensity for shock. And she also showed how much of the power of BDSM overlaps with the techniques of storytelling. With one sentence and one gesture, Judy basically performed an impromptu one woman one line one act play. She got off on the exhibitionism of the performance. And we were invited to voyuer not only to her stream, but to her scene.
For some people, the relative grossness of bodily waste means that the piss of someone they love or worship becomes delicious or divine. The fact that something repulsive or impolite could become a tasty and euphoria inducing turn-on when it emerges from the genitals of someone you adore, someone you worship: that’s the magic of BDSM.
Third, Judy was fully aware of what it means for bodies to take up space. I’m going to spell this one out for you: Piss looks like cum, whether it’s erupting out of a shaft head or pouring out of a swollen hole. Ejaculate builds up in the urethral sponge before being shot out due to contractions in genital muscles. For some bodies, urine and cum both pass through the urethra and out the same hole. There’s some unfortunate confusion about whether ejaculate is piss, the fear being that in losing control through orgasm you’ve soiled yourself. Instead of worrying about whether we’ve pissed everywhere when we’ve had an orgasm, why don’t we lean into that blurring of lines and enjoy fluids no matter what they’re made of? And if you’re worried about a smelly mess, why not get a machine washable absorbent fuck blanket?
So let’s say you’re into all of this and you wanna take your piss play to the next level. There’s plenty of sex toys that can help you with that! Some devices that are designed with pissing standing up in mind can be helpful for play: there could be gender exploration or affirmation involved with the tools resembling penises, and some are more neutral shaped. There’s also a delightful gag that looks like a trough, for those who have a little trouble with spillage.
When I worked as a dominatrix, we would joke that clients who asked for a golden shower really just wanted to see pussy. But the joke, I always felt, was on the client. Because if he thought he was getting away with something, he was doing it while being “forced” into an act that was bound to bring up intensely transgressive feelings.
This is one of the marvelous things about BDSM: we intentionally create a space where we can see how it feels to break the rules within a constructed context of safety.
At the dungeon where I got my start, toilet play was restricted to the tub in the client bathroom. So I came to associate it with the climax in the narrative of any session. It was the easiest for us if they came, covered in my piss, on their backs in the place where they could quickly clean themselves up. Some of my fondest memories from that time are balancing on the lip of the tub, pouring down on paying submissives, showing them how easy it was for me to be rude, to be in control by losing control.
Piss play is not always about age play: sometimes it’s about the piss guzzler being objectified as a human urinal, or a pisser taking on Alpha dog status by marking his territory in somebody’s gaping butthole. But on some level, watersports are always about being primal and impolite, subverting the rules of civil society. This is one of the marvelous things about BDSM: we intentionally create a space where we can see how it feels to break the rules within a constructed context of safety. After all, in that warehouse in Toronto, it was Judy Minx’s “Little” side that couldn’t resist mischievously exhibiting her potty play to a group of friends and strangers. It was Judy the mature adult who respectfully put down a puppy pad first.