Conditioning is the process of training someone to unconsciously respond to a stimulus in a specific way. This is a very hot subject among online BDSM folks. In my experience with real-world BDSM, not so much. Anyway, it’s a fascinating concept. One of the most popular Internet ideas is to condition a person to orgasm on command. Based on my personal experience, it’s fairly possible with the woman. I don’t think it’s even remotely a chance with men.

In the outside world, conditioning is actually a very useful tool. Religions have been utilizing it for centuries. Rituals provide triggers that put people in a specific frame of mind. Sensory input like incense or music is very helpful in these areas. If you believe that prayer has a real power to change things, you also probably believe that the mind has to be in a specific state in order to make use of this power. Eastern and Western religions, not to mention paganism, all subscribe to this concept. Stimuli are used as a way to shortcut getting into that state.

Conditioning is certainly possible and even beneficial in sexual contexts. Scents, like perfumes, can arouse a man or a woman sexually. Any input that is consistently supplied in conjunction with an activity can become a trigger for that activity. Even things that don’t need a trigger can become conditioned. For example, my first D/S experience was with a woman who told me that every time I stood I should have my legs slightly apart and my hands clasped behind my back. She enforced this rule with spankings if I failed to comply.

It didn’t take very long before I automatically assumed this pose even when she was not present. I was conditioned. In our FLRD Mrs. Lion has conditioned me to always wait to eat until she begins first. It’s a rule that she’s enforced consistently for a long time. I almost never slip up. Similarly, she has conditioned me to be very careful about spilling food on my shirt. I used to do this all the time. Now, I almost never get anything on my clothing. I’m conditioned.

Sexual conditioning is much more difficult. The underlying neurological and hormonal activities are so deeply rooted that it’s very difficult to make any real changes through behavioral training. Masters and Johnson provided a technique to help correct premature ejaculation. It involved using what they called the “pinch technique” to distract the male just before he ejaculated. Apparently, consistent training this way works. He is conditioned to hold off a little longer.

I know some women who tried to train their male partners not to orgasm until given permission. They had limited success. They were using verbal commands. Had they used the Masters and Johnson technique, they could have effectively stopped orgasm until they wanted to allow it. I don’t think they could ever transfer that control to become strictly verbal. I may be wrong. Perhaps someone has done it.

From what I can see, the most accessible form of sexual conditioning can be done using some sort of stimulus to be coupled with arousal. It could be a certain scent or perhaps the piece of music that can be associated with being sexually aroused. The dominant partner would physically arouse his or her partner while the stimulus is present. Eventually, just providing the sound or smell without the physical stimulation will also produce arousal. That can be fun. To make it work, the association has to be consistent.

This is what Pavlov proved with his dogs. They learned to salivate when he rang a bell. I suppose I can learn to be aroused when I hear a certain piece of music or smell a given scent. It won’t work if I’m not at a point in my sexual cycle when I can be aroused. And based on what I’ve learned, it won’t work to make me ejaculate. However, it can act as an effective form of foreplay.

Sound like fun? Give it a try and let me know how you do.