What is a BDSM Brat?

Woman acting out as a brat

A brat is a kink player, generally on the submissive/bottom side of the D/s spectrum, who loves nothing more than being mischievous, cheeky, and somewhat naughty, all in the name of play. 

Within the negotiated boundaries, the role of the brat is to present a challenge to the Dominant or Top, and that can play out in a variety of ways; physical struggle, backchat, total non-compliance, ‘misunderstanding’ instructions, or taking instruction way too literally. There are many reasons people brat: for some, it’s the smartarsed banter; for some, it’s the testing of limits – both theirs and their Top’s; some want to feel conquered; and for others it simply part of their nature that they want to embrace.

Brats have had a pretty difficult time legitimising their play in the BDSM scene. They’re often accused of ‘topping from the bottom’ ie. manipulating a top into doing the bottoms will, and have been described as irreverent, rude, and disrespectful. These criticisms, however, seem to forget that true bratting is consensual play, and shouldn’t be confused with players who are just actual arseholes.

How does a Brat behave, or misbehave?

As bratting calls upon the more playful, childish aspects of our nature, it’s often assumed to be a form of age play. It’s not. The ‘brat’ is a distinct identity in and of itself, and not all brats are age players – some people are entirely comfortable invoking brattish behaviour without needing any props or prompts of childhood. That said, bratting is often incorporated in other roleplay in order to add a challenge to the D/s dynamic. For example, a petplayer could engage their inner brat resulting in a particularly naughty pup who likes to hide shoes, or an aloof kitty who only sits in your lap after launching a sneak attack.
 
Some common behaviours you may see in brats:

  • finding loopholes in instructions, or exploiting any vagaries in a command, eg. Dom says ‘sit at my feet’, but didn’t say when so Brat ignores him.
  • teasing and taunting in order to receive the Top’s attention. This could be physical or verbal.
  • generally rebellious and prone to a ‘make me’ attitude.
  • playful and engaging.

How to dominate or control a Brat?

Brats cannot be dominated by just any Mistress, Master, or Sir – in fact many Dominants find brats way too difficult to manage. On the other hand, there are Doms and Tops so enthralled with brats that they take on the special title of Tamer. But for those feeling keen about playing with a brat, keep these things in mind:

  • you need to enjoy playful, ‘silly’, fun
  • expect unpredictability 
  • negotiate thoroughly and communicate your expectations clearly
  • have firm limits and stand by them
  • you need to love a challenge, and
  • be responsive.

As a Dominant of a brat, it’s vital that you only accept bratty behaviour during negotiated times and/or scenes. If a brat is intentionally breaking the rules and pre-negotiated roles you’ve both established, this has nothing to do with cheekiness and mischief. This is not bratting, and it’s important that you deal with that outside the kink play - it’s not kinky, consensual behaviour to be rewarded with a funishment spanking. It’s just being a tool.

Ultimately, brats respond best to a partner who enjoys a challenge, and is prepared to take on someone who wants to struggle. Sadistic Tops can be particularly attractive to the more masochistic of the brats – those who taunt their Tops into harder and harder play. The more nurturing Mummy and Daddy Doms are often found with some of the little-identified brats, where rewards are based more affection and security. 

Tips For the Beginner Brat

If this all sounds exciting and you want to explore your bratty side, be sure to start simple. Incorporate some playful games into your foreplay, like chasey or hide n seek. Make your partner catch you or find you before the sexy times even start. Another great first step is roleplay, and the brat has some wonderful archetypes to work with: naughty schoolgirl, super-villain, rebellious teen, destructive pet, mischievous prankster… It’s often easier to try out new aspects of ourselves when we play another role, and this also gives your partner a great opportunity to try their hand at taming by playing their own role. Have some flat-out FUN with it!

What and how you play will depend on what you want to get out of the play; how do you want it to make you feel? Physically overwhelmed? Intellectually challenged? Provocative? Naughty? Knowing? It will also be dependent on what your partner; what sort of Top are they? What will be their way of handling a brat? If this is something you’re both really keen on, have some solid, authentic chats and negotiate limits and boundaries. Create a safe container for your brat play to exist in.

BDSM is about relationships, and they are much more complex than simple obedience, or lack of it. As we’ve said before, there is no one way to be a submissive, and no prescribed way show appreciation, respect, or love to your Dominant. Brats may be pushier, mouthier, or wrigglier than their submissive peers, but this is how they express their devotion and trust in their Top.

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