Knowledge

This section contains recommendations of books for LGBTIQ and gender and sexual diversity therapists and clients, and provides links to other suitable organisations.

If you are gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, intersex or any other gender or sexual preference and are seeking literature about the societal and personal issues surrounding sexuality and gender, or if you are a therapist who is working with clients such as this and looking for texts to gain a greater understanding, then start your search here.

Once you have found what you are looking for, we highly recommend that you check out Gay’s The Word, a friendly and well stocked bookshop in central London that should meet your requirements. If you do not live in London, consider supporting us by visiting our Amazon shop and purchasing books from there.

We are currently in the process of transferring all of our resources from our old site into these pages, and will continue to add books and material regularly, so this section will continue to grow and expand. Please do visit again if you cannot find what you are looking for just yet. We are also open to suggestions, so if you would like to recommend an appropriate book or link, feel free to contact us.

The New Topping Book

The New Topping Book Image

Dossie Easton and Janet W. Hardy. Greenery Press, 2003

Key Elements: The entire text takes a proactive positive approach to the exploration of being a ‘Top’ and developing comfortably in the role of ‘Top’. It also contains a resource guide

Chapter One- Hello Again!

Covers the love of Tops, Why the book was written , How the authors view BDSM, (Bondage and sadomasochism), Defining BDSM and how do you know that you are a Top ,

Chapter Two- What Is It About Topping, Anyway?
Details the struggle of power in society, Building your hearth, Asks the question of whether or not all power is the same, ‘What’s in it for you’ (empathy, creativity, bigness, nurturing, bullying, control, competence and self knowledge), ‘What about Bottoms’, How Tops and Bottoms interrelate, (Their interdependence), ‘Whose fantasy’ (the role of fantasy), Symbolism and structure’ (their role in fantasy),

Chapter Three-What Do Tops Do?
Finding your Top persona’ (the various roles that you can play and do you always have to have a role), Where are the boundaries?, The use of safe words?, When you’re itching to go further-when you have a clear picture of what turns you on want to go further, If you’re doing it, it’s real’ (the contradiction and paradox in S/M and reflecting on the ways in which symbolic powerlessness can empower and symbolic cruelty can sensitize)

Interlude 1- A sensation scene at a party played by Janet and a female friend’.

Chapter Four- Rights and Responsibilities
(Your rights and responsibilities as a Top)

Chapter Five- ‘How Do You Learn to Do This Stuff’

(Giving you permission to be ignorant and learn) , Do it yourself’ (basic rules and helpful hints)

Interlude 2- A scene at a party by our friend Bill and a stranger


Chapter Six- ‘Soaring Higher’

Getting the technique out of the way, learning and progressing, Staying open (paying attention to what is happening in your own body and heart, paying attention to muscle tension, paying attention to breathing, paying attention to posture and movement), Intuition and where to find it- the ability to now something without knowing it

Chapter Seven- BDSM Ethnics

How to be safe and healthy while at play violating and betraying, Consent, Respecting and blaming, Hearing feedback , Respecting persons

Chapter Eight- ‘On Your Mark-Get Set.’

Communication skills for Tops, Getting the information that you need, I messages (the importance of using I statements), Needy Bottoms (ways of handling situations with them), Black holes (unresponsive Bottoms), Activities that require special consent (things that may require special consent), Sex (the kinds of sexual behavior that are o.k.), Marks (temporary marks, bruises, or welts), Pains (an acquired taste), Humiliation (what kind he loves or hates), Phobias and turn-offs (psychological phobias, images, or associations), High-risk play (forms of play that have a much higher risk of injury), Limits of scene space (agreeing the limits and gaining consent to go further), Emotional limits (special consent for anything that may evoke strong emotional conflict), Limits for tops (knowing your own limits), Making room for your own needs (where sex and physical stimulation fit in)

Interlude 3- A role-play scene played by ‘Alaska’ a novice top friend

Chapter Nine- Go!

What do you do first?, Getting yourself turned on, Impulse topping, Keeping it going, Taking control, Asking for directions, How to be supportive, Checking in, Calibrating your bottom, Bottomless Pitts (how to handle Bottoms who never seem to get enough), Closure, Winding down

Chapter Ten: ‘And if It Doesn’t Go The Way You Planned’
(How to handle physical mishaps, emergencies, and aftershocks)

Chapter Eleven: ‘Toys for Tops’-A Basic Toy Selection
Rope, restraints, blindfolds, collar, clamps, candles, soft flogger, slapper, or jacket bat, sex toys, safer sex, supplies, emergency supplies; More advanced toys, helplessness toys, toys for hitting, toys for poking, toys that heat or cool, toys that zap, toys for turning on and getting off, toys for role playing; Toys for the road, Maintaining toys, Some final thoughts on toys

Interlude 4- A first time topping scene played by a Bottom and her friends

Chapter Twelve-‘Finding Others’
Common mistakes, Virtual communities, Munches, Leather bars, Support groups, The kink communities and people of color, O.k. but where are all the bottoms, It pays to advertise, To cruise or not to cruise , Introducing BDSM into existing relationship, Choosing the right Bottom, Responsibilities, Ability to give as well as take, Discretion, Self control, Supportiveness

Chapter Thirteen-‘Special Cases’
Novices (BDSM virgins), Professional domination, Public play (playing in public)

Chapter Fourteen-‘Full Time D/S’ (the 24/7’s)

Fluidity (an approach to moving in and out of dominant or submissive mind sets), Activities and behaviors (includes what’s in it for the submissive), Contracts and symbols , The duration of the contract, Symbols (collars, rings), Obligations (services provided by the submissive and services provided by the dominant), Ways to communicate (creative ways to accomplish communication), Agreements about sex and play with others (activities that may or may not take place outside the relationship), Disagreements (how will they be handled)

Chapter Fifteen-‘Shadow Play: Dark side S/M’
What is it (scenes that delve into deep psychological territory)?, Playing in the shadow, Playing with cultural trauma (what is the attraction from the Bottom if you choose a script, what is the attraction from the Top if you choose to a script), How do you do it (aftercare, public play, healing), Deep emotional safety (setting and keeping to limits), How do you do it (beginning, middle, and ending), What about therapy (does the Top become the therapist in deep psychological play), Shadows and rebirth (finding acceptance for emotions and behaviors that would be unacceptable outside the BDSM scene)

Chapter Sixteen-‘S/M Spirituality: From the Top’
Shadow and spirit, S/M ritual as a spiritual path, Edge path (whenever things start to feel risky), Roles in ritual (training yourself and developing your own spiritual practice), Ritual practice (doing ritual successfully), Planning and negotiating , Power and manifestation ,

Chapter Seventeen-‘The Light That Shines In The Darkness’
(the darkness of BDSM that leads to light)

The New Topping Book

The New Topping Book Image

Dossie Easton and Janet W. Hardy. Greenery Press, 2003

Key Elements: The entire text takes a proactive positive approach to the exploration of being a ‘Top’ and developing comfortably in the role of ‘Top’. It also contains a resource guide

Chapter One- Hello Again!

Covers the love of Tops, Why the book was written , How the authors view BDSM, (Bondage and sadomasochism), Defining BDSM and how do you know that you are a Top ,

Chapter Two- What Is It About Topping, Anyway?
Details the struggle of power in society, Building your hearth, Asks the question of whether or not all power is the same, ‘What’s in it for you’ (empathy, creativity, bigness, nurturing, bullying, control, competence and self knowledge), ‘What about Bottoms’, How Tops and Bottoms interrelate, (Their interdependence), ‘Whose fantasy’ (the role of fantasy), Symbolism and structure’ (their role in fantasy),

Chapter Three-What Do Tops Do?
Finding your Top persona’ (the various roles that you can play and do you always have to have a role), Where are the boundaries?, The use of safe words?, When you’re itching to go further-when you have a clear picture of what turns you on want to go further, If you’re doing it, it’s real’ (the contradiction and paradox in S/M and reflecting on the ways in which symbolic powerlessness can empower and symbolic cruelty can sensitize)

Interlude 1- A sensation scene at a party played by Janet and a female friend’.

Chapter Four- Rights and Responsibilities
(Your rights and responsibilities as a Top)

Chapter Five- ‘How Do You Learn to Do This Stuff’

(Giving you permission to be ignorant and learn) , Do it yourself’ (basic rules and helpful hints)

Interlude 2- A scene at a party by our friend Bill and a stranger


Chapter Six- ‘Soaring Higher’

Getting the technique out of the way, learning and progressing, Staying open (paying attention to what is happening in your own body and heart, paying attention to muscle tension, paying attention to breathing, paying attention to posture and movement), Intuition and where to find it- the ability to now something without knowing it

Chapter Seven- BDSM Ethnics

How to be safe and healthy while at play violating and betraying, Consent, Respecting and blaming, Hearing feedback , Respecting persons

Chapter Eight- ‘On Your Mark-Get Set.’

Communication skills for Tops, Getting the information that you need, I messages (the importance of using I statements), Needy Bottoms (ways of handling situations with them), Black holes (unresponsive Bottoms), Activities that require special consent (things that may require special consent), Sex (the kinds of sexual behavior that are o.k.), Marks (temporary marks, bruises, or welts), Pains (an acquired taste), Humiliation (what kind he loves or hates), Phobias and turn-offs (psychological phobias, images, or associations), High-risk play (forms of play that have a much higher risk of injury), Limits of scene space (agreeing the limits and gaining consent to go further), Emotional limits (special consent for anything that may evoke strong emotional conflict), Limits for tops (knowing your own limits), Making room for your own needs (where sex and physical stimulation fit in)

Interlude 3- A role-play scene played by ‘Alaska’ a novice top friend

Chapter Nine- Go!

What do you do first?, Getting yourself turned on, Impulse topping, Keeping it going, Taking control, Asking for directions, How to be supportive, Checking in, Calibrating your bottom, Bottomless Pitts (how to handle Bottoms who never seem to get enough), Closure, Winding down

Chapter Ten: ‘And if It Doesn’t Go The Way You Planned’
(How to handle physical mishaps, emergencies, and aftershocks)

Chapter Eleven: ‘Toys for Tops’-A Basic Toy Selection
Rope, restraints, blindfolds, collar, clamps, candles, soft flogger, slapper, or jacket bat, sex toys, safer sex, supplies, emergency supplies; More advanced toys, helplessness toys, toys for hitting, toys for poking, toys that heat or cool, toys that zap, toys for turning on and getting off, toys for role playing; Toys for the road, Maintaining toys, Some final thoughts on toys

Interlude 4- A first time topping scene played by a Bottom and her friends

Chapter Twelve-‘Finding Others’
Common mistakes, Virtual communities, Munches, Leather bars, Support groups, The kink communities and people of color, O.k. but where are all the bottoms, It pays to advertise, To cruise or not to cruise , Introducing BDSM into existing relationship, Choosing the right Bottom, Responsibilities, Ability to give as well as take, Discretion, Self control, Supportiveness

Chapter Thirteen-‘Special Cases’
Novices (BDSM virgins), Professional domination, Public play (playing in public)

Chapter Fourteen-‘Full Time D/S’ (the 24/7’s)

Fluidity (an approach to moving in and out of dominant or submissive mind sets), Activities and behaviors (includes what’s in it for the submissive), Contracts and symbols , The duration of the contract, Symbols (collars, rings), Obligations (services provided by the submissive and services provided by the dominant), Ways to communicate (creative ways to accomplish communication), Agreements about sex and play with others (activities that may or may not take place outside the relationship), Disagreements (how will they be handled)

Chapter Fifteen-‘Shadow Play: Dark side S/M’
What is it (scenes that delve into deep psychological territory)?, Playing in the shadow, Playing with cultural trauma (what is the attraction from the Bottom if you choose a script, what is the attraction from the Top if you choose to a script), How do you do it (aftercare, public play, healing), Deep emotional safety (setting and keeping to limits), How do you do it (beginning, middle, and ending), What about therapy (does the Top become the therapist in deep psychological play), Shadows and rebirth (finding acceptance for emotions and behaviors that would be unacceptable outside the BDSM scene)

Chapter Sixteen-‘S/M Spirituality: From the Top’
Shadow and spirit, S/M ritual as a spiritual path, Edge path (whenever things start to feel risky), Roles in ritual (training yourself and developing your own spiritual practice), Ritual practice (doing ritual successfully), Planning and negotiating , Power and manifestation ,

Chapter Seventeen-‘The Light That Shines In The Darkness’
(the darkness of BDSM that leads to light)

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