Author: Alexandra Gold
COVID Has Forced Many Kink Spaces to Close: The Health Toll it Takes
Safe kink spaces are crucial for fostering a sense of community for kinky folks. They provide kinky people with a place of education, self-expression, and cultural development.
However, with the pandemic many kink spaces have been forced to close, many permanently. These spaces address loneliness in kinky folks who may not otherwise have a close-knit support system, which has been intensified with the forced isolation due to COVID. Having a support system means being able to monitor each other’s health and provide mutual resources and assurance in times of distress. Community, culture, and togetherness are key to kink. It is all about connection.
The loss of play spaces has left a hole in the community that may lead to mental health struggles for kinky folks. You can read more about the closings of such places as Toronto nightspot Club 120 and weekly BDSM institution Bondage a Go Go, and why these spaces were forced to shut with a heavy heart.
Not only have event spaces closed, but events and munches—casual get-togethers for kinky individuals—have been canceled. Some events have moved online, but the physical intimacy provided by an in-person get-together is still lacking.
Community involvement has been shown to increase kinksters’ willingness to come out as kinky to their healthcare providers, in our 2016 Kink Health Survey. And disclosure about kink activities and identities to healthcare providers means better healthcare.
The loss of play spaces due to COVID-19 will impact people’s health and well-being. Support the still-existing play spaces working hard to foster an ongoing sense of community during isolation. And when you see an online kink event that looks interesting, if you feel comfortable, share it! You never know who may be in need.