Good morning, good afternoon, good evening or good night, depending on when you’re reading this entry.
Now that we’re home from Capcon and trying to get back into our everyday routine, I thought this would be a perfect time to post the information from a class we did at the 2019 Rearz Halloween party on Aftercare and Drop.
Aftercare is a very important aspect within ageplay, and aftercare isn’t just for the ageplayer but also for the caregiver, which many people forget and often leave out when talking about aftercare. Aftercare for ageplayers is different than the aftercare you would give a sub/slave after a bdsm session. With ABs, littles, middles, teens and caregivers I’m more worried about drop as drop will often happen with ageplayers far more often then not.
Drop can affect everyone, daddys, mommys even AB, little, middle and teen ageplayers. Drop has many names, dom drop, top drop, sub drop, baby drop, little drop, daddy drop, mommy drop even event drop.
Whatever name you go by, drop is defined as a feeling of depression, unhappiness, or similar negative emotion in an ageplayer or caregiver. This will occasionally occur immediately after a period of punishment activity, after a session ends, or it can simply happen after spending a fun weekend together in baby space. You can also have what I call delayed drop. Often, when I left my ex’s place in Kingston after spending 3 days with her, and even after I get home from a pro-session or event, it wasn’t until after I got home that I hit drop and sometimes it was a day later.
Drop also may include feelings of guilt, especially if the caregiver believes he or she has made an error, went too far or too hard, or has traditional ideas about relationships or socially appropriate behavior. I myself use to practice bdsm and I was trained as a master but I always felt bad giving a girl the belt or cane unless I had a reason to like it was a punishment and then if the girl cried as they often did I would sometimes feel bad. Even now, as a daddy I will get an itch just to spank someone and while I’m giving that spanking I feel great and all is awesome but 20 mins. later after I have given her a hug and put her in a fresh diaper I start to feel bad for wanting to “hurt” her.
Explaining drop in ageplay is simple, just as ageplay is multifaced, the effects of drop also come in many forms. They’re usually physical or psychological—even spiritual for some. One common element is the release of hormones within the body.
Endorphins are hormones which are classed as opioids and fall into the same sub-category as morphine. They can create intense highs and euphoria, produced by the brain during various experiences—not least of all through love, excitement, pain and orgasm. It’s no wonder they’re often cited when trying to understand alternative lifestyles physiologically.
Adrenaline is also common. It’s a hormone that’s released during an emotional experience, most often with fear and the fight-or-flight reaction, which itself has a long list of effects. It is also common in positive emotional experiences, especially with things your excited about, as well as other emotional experiences and states.
Emotions and mental states add to the experience as well. The session might involve something new and untested, revisiting something that was once triggering or feared. It could be with someone new, or with a long-term partner whom you deeply want to please.
Every experience be it a 24/7 lifestyle or a weekend only situation has an almost unique mix of physical, mental and emotional being, both individually and together, which can lead to three particular phases.
During a session, the combination of responses can create a trance-like feeling often called abspace, littlespace, Middlespace, Teenspace even Daddyspace or Mommyspace and in bdsm it’s often called subspace or topspace. In such a state, the ageplayer becomes less and less aware of grown up things and more and more interested in things like colouring or playing with their toys. They feel more and more childlike and, in many cases, even to the point that their speech regresses to ab/little speak or even just noises.
As a caregiver you become more and more aware of everything and everyone around you. You become spider-man with spider-sense. You know when your ageplayer is up to no good. You know if they’re trying to steal that last cookie or you know when there just playing nice and quietly while you’re sitting in your chair reading your book.
During punishment the implications for the caregiver are important. If the ageplayer is not alert to what’s happening, or the pain they are receiving, then the caregiver needs to be. They are now the ageplayers eyes, ears—even skin.
It should go without saying that the caregiver should be aware of this regardless, but it is important when the ageplayer, during punishment cannot always be relied upon to say something—especially if pain—is too much.
A great analogy for this could be to think of ageplay headspace as being drunk, anyone who has hurt themselves while drunk could probably attest to not realising just how much they were injured until sobriety kicked in. Thus, as a caregiver, it is very important for you to learn your ageplayers limits and what they can and cannot handle.
The effects of space don’t stop when the play stops. Just as finishing the last beer doesn’t instantly make you sober. The body is still reacting and processing to whatever you’ve been doing or had done to you.
The caregiver should be aware of this as well. You wouldn’t let a friend drive home hammered and/or high as a kite; neither should anyone who is in space be left to themselves.
Caregivers can experience this as well. The stimulations are different but the reaction is similar; a natural high, a flight of euphoria.
It is often a limited experience because, the caregiver is in control and has to keep control for the session to stay within limits and maintain safety for all involved.
Unfortunately, the hormonal and emotional high can’t last forever. The rush is just that—relatively fleeting. It could last for minutes or hours but once the body has flushed the hormones away, a large hole where all the lovely sensations and feelings used to be can be left.
The come-down, often called drop but also known as ab drop, little drop, middle drop, teen drop, daddy drop, mommy drop and sub drop is very similar to withdrawal. Just as space can be likened to being drunk, drop can be like a rough hangover. The body reacts to the sudden absence of physical, mental and emotional highs, sending the partner back to Earth.
What the symptoms are, how deeply they are felt and how soon they appear after a session varies wildly.
Physically, they may be cold, aching, unsteady on their feet, dizzy. Mentally, they may feel guilt, doubt or shame over what they’ve done or participated in. Emotions can hit a depressing low along with sadness, anger and emptiness. For example, those who are going through a drop can experience irrationality—crying or lashing out for no reason.
This is by no means an exhaustive list. As is always the case with ageplay, everyone is different. This is why it’s important to be aware of yourself—and your partner—after any session. Your reactions, and the depth of them, might not fit with the common suspects.
Being alert to yourself in the hours and days after play will help you help yourself, and help your partner to help you—regain normality.
You can help lessen the effects of a drop. Before a session, ensure that you are taking care of yourself; that you have eaten healthily and had plenty of water; that any health problems are taken care of and discussed; and that any negative or troubling emotions are shared and put to rest.
If your body or mind begins in the wrong state for a session, then it could make a drop worse.
Again, this is often seen from the ageplayers point of view, but caregivers also experience it (and more often than the preceding ‘space’) as their own ecstasy and elation subsides.
Some tips for dealing with drop
Try keeping yourself occupied, with a hobby or other activity which will allow you to clear your head or express your feelings.
Aroma therapy, warm baths, meditation and listening to soothing music is also helpful.
Talk to your ageplayer/caregiver/close friend and tell them about how you are feeling, so they can help you cope.
Rest and get plenty of sleep.
Personally, I like listening to some Heavy Metal like Metallica, Megadeath, Manowar or Iron Maiden, or watching something funny like Super Troopers or something like March of the Penguins and I do often cry after spending a few days with an ab girl and being in my Daddyspace non-stop.
So, drop is a little different with ageplayers and caregivers and just as drop is different, aftercare is also very different.
Some punishments may drain the ageplayers mental, emotional or physical energy. Because of this, the ageplayer may feel in need of emotional support, comfort, reassurance, and/or physical tenderness.
And although many people seem to think that it’s only the ageplayer who needs aftercare, this is not true. The caregiver may also need some degree of aftercare, depending on various factors like, experience, the punishment or punishments, and personal preference. Hugs and cuddles can go a long way for caregivers as well or maybe an ice pack for daddy or mommy’s ouchy hand. In most cases the caregiver is the one who tends to run the aftercare.
Aftercare should be discussed and planned for—in terms of equipment and time—before anything happens.
When a loved one is unwell, you look after them. If they are going through a tough time, you’re there for them. While ageplay should be nothing like illness or trauma, everyone concerned has been through something extraordinary and often can be in a state of shock and real life can be hard to adjust back to. Especially if you’ve been in ageplay space even Daddy space or Mommy space for a few days straight.
Just as with ‘space’ and ‘drop’, aftercare comes in every shade possible. Whether it’s your very first time and you have no idea what sort of care you’ll need or your ten-thousandth time and your fairly sure you just need a hug, talking about post-session needs is as important as setting hard limits and safe words. If it is your first time, consider what kinds of comfort you usually need in other situations.
Physically, the caregiver should take care of any immediate practicalities, attending to cuts or injuries with first aid, providing a blanket or clothes for warmth, applying soothing lotion to your ouchy bottom, maybe putting you in a fresh diaper and having a cuddle or being fed a baba, or having a cup of tea or simply cuddling and comforting you.
Replenishing the body is crucial. Orange juice is particularly good for its vitamins as they can soften the drop back to real life, soft drinks are better avoided for their high sugar content. A little food is also helpful; fruit to pick at is always excellent, a portion of chocolate might not go amiss as eating it releases a small helping of endorphins back into the body.
Aftercare is as necessary as consent for its emotional and mental support. The biggest part of this is reassuring your partner you are there for them. They may need to hear how much you adore, accept, and respect them. They may need to know they aren’t shameful or disgusting. You should also tell them they were a good girl/boy for taking their punishment and that you forgive them.
They may need to discuss what you’ve done and how they feel about that. They might just need a hug or even be left alone. Maybe they just want to watch March of the penguins and eat chicken wings.
Aftercare doesn’t stop on the day. It’s good for the Caregiver to check in with their play partner for at least the few days following play to ensure they are fine and not suffering in any way. If you don’t live together, a voice, Facetime or Skype call is better than text-based chat.
It’s down to the Caregiver to check, and provide, what their partner requires. Some need more attention than others; a few need no attention at all. There’s no prescription or commandments to what aftercare should be. It’s whatever will help you and/or your partner back to normality with a parachute rather than crashing and burning.
What’s important is listening to what your partner needs and giving them that. Not listening to or giving your partner what they need is neglecting your responsibility and can potentially hurt those you’re with.
Again, this is usually seen as something given to the ageplayer by the caregiver, which is natural given the imbalance of power during a session. However, as I’ve said before, caregivers can need aftercare as well.
If you’re single and playing alone or at an event by yourself make sure you have a plan for yourself. Sometimes events can leave you feeling lonely and lost and other times you just feel excited, overwhelmed or just sad to see it end. This is why it is important to have things in place that you can do for yourself to help balance out some of those feelings.
How to provide aftercare
Aftercare may include expression of love and gratitude towards each other in a verbal way or in a physical way by cuddling, kissing, skin and hair stroking or diapered bottom pats.
Aftercare, at its most basic, simply involves the willingness to continue being there with your ageplayer/caregiver for a sufficient time period that they can feel safe, regain their emotional equilibrium, and no longer feel the need to cling to you.
It is equally important to recognize that aftercare is for both the caregiver and ageplayer. If either person leaves too soon, then their partner may feel abandonment or loss far exceeding the obvious dimensions of the scene.
With my abs the only time I need to give after care is after a punishment and in most cases it’s wipe away any tears, a kiss on the forehead and a big hug, I also tell them “Daddy/Mr. Kevin forgives you and it’s all done and over with and you are a good girl for taking your punishment” and afterword’s we may have a big cuddle while watching some cartoons or a movie.
However, if you’re going to do a bdsm scene with your ageplayer or you are part of the DD/lg umbrella then aftercare is extremely important especially after intense scenes, whether it be impact play, rope play or just really rough sex.
I recommend putting together an aftercare and drop kit beforehand and have it ready. The following are just a few items that can be included in an aftercare kit. Remember that different scenes require different types of items.
Drop is different for each person too so make your kit according to you and your partner. Make sure that your ageplayer is hydrated with water, Pedialyte or Gatorade. It doesn’t hurt to include other drinks that are comforting or bring your ageplayer into ageplay space such as juice, milk, chocolate milk, formula or tea.
If you’re ageplayer is shaking after a scene, calm them down with a bubble bath, wrapping them in blankets and giving them a pair of socks/slippers, or even give a massage.
Nourishment and hydration are essential, keep a snack supply close by. Accompany the snack with a warming or refreshing drink. Be aware that body temperature often drops sharply after play, so provide a soft blanket or cozy bathrobe for some warmth. If you’ve tied your ageplayer up, a massage will provide some extra comfort.
Make sure to have a close look at any welts or marks, to see if they require any attention. This would also be the right moment to admire the marks together, if that’s your piece of cake. I recommend smoothing on a soothing lotion or gel, however there are ageplayers who love the afterglow, the warm, glowing feeling on the skin which can be the result of a spanking, whipping or caning.
In closing remember
These three elements—space, drop and aftercare—can occur together or separately.
The presence or absence of one doesn’t equate to the presence or absence of the others.
They can be brought about by anything, no matter how big or how small.
Anyone—ageplayer, caregiver, or otherwise—can experience them.
Talk to each other and be open about your needs.
Be there for those you’re with, physically and emotionally.
It’s important to note that while all three are heavily related to one another, they are also independent of one another. They’re collectively seen as a natural progression but one or two may be experienced without the others.