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What is the top vs bottom kink?

The queer community has its own language when it comes to discussing sexual preferences. Tops, bottoms, and verses (or “switches”) are words that describe a person’s sexual preference in terms of power dynamics during sex. While these terms are commonly used within the queer community, they can be confusing for outsiders or those new to the terminology. In this blog post, we’ll explore what the top vs bottom kink is and what it means for those who identify as such.

What is the Top vs Bottom Kink?

The top vs bottom kink refers to a person’s preference for being either the dominant or submissive partner during sex. Tops enjoy taking charge and exerting control over their partner, while bottoms prefer to be on the receiving end of their partner’s actions and to surrender control.

This preference for power dynamics can manifest in a variety of ways in the bedroom. For tops, this might mean things like spanking, hair-pulling, or bondage. They might enjoy being in control of the pace, intensity, or position of sex. For bottoms, this could include receiving oral sex, being penetrated, or being tied up. Bottoms might enjoy letting their partner take the lead and dictate the course of the sexual encounter.

It’s important to note that a preference for top vs bottom roles does not necessarily mean that a person is always dominant or submissive in every aspect of their life. This preference is specific to sex and does not necessarily reflect a person’s personality or preferences outside of the bedroom.

Is the Top vs Bottom Kink the Same as BDSM?

The top vs bottom kink is often associated with BDSM (which stands for bondage/discipline, dominance/submission, and sadism/masochism), but the two are not the same. While BDSM includes a range of activities and preferences, the top vs bottom kink focuses specifically on power dynamics during sex.

That said, tops and bottoms may enjoy incorporating BDSM activities into their sexual encounters. The preference for power dynamics can overlap with a desire for things like restraints, impact play, or humiliation. However, not all tops or bottoms are into BDSM, and not all BDSM practitioners identify as tops or bottoms. Ultimately, these are distinct but related concepts.

How Do You Know If You’re a Top or a Bottom?

Figuring out your sexual preferences can take time and exploration. It’s important to remember that there’s no right or wrong way to enjoy sex, and that everyone’s preferences are valid.

If you’re unsure whether you identify as a top, bottom, or verse, you might start by paying attention to what you enjoy during sex. Do you like taking charge and dictating what happens? Do you prefer to let your partner take control and simply go along for the ride? Do you feel like you’d enjoy a more equal balance of power between you and your partner?

There’s no need to rush to label yourself in any particular way – identifying your preferences is a personal process that will likely evolve over time. If you’re exploring these aspects of your sexuality with a partner, it’s important to communicate openly and honestly about your interests, limits, and boundaries. Consent and clear communication are key to having a positive sexual experience.


The top vs bottom kink is a preference for power dynamics during sex, with tops enjoying dominance and bottoms preferring submission. This preference is specific to sex, and does not necessarily reflect a person’s personality or preferences outside of the bedroom. While associated with BDSM, the top vs bottom kink is distinct from this broader category. Exploring your sexual preferences is a personal process that can involve time, communication, and experimentation. Ultimately, what matters most is finding sexual experiences that feel fulfilling and pleasurable for you and your partner.