Consent. This is not as simple as her saying, “yes.” True consent means she has both a clear knowledge of what she is agreeing to as well as a desire for you to give her that experience. Before you scene with anyone, you must know what methods you intend to employ and what her comfort level is with them. For example, just because a woman enjoys bare handed spanking, it doesn’t automatically mean she is comfortable with a flogger or a crop. Some women enjoy knife play, many do not. Also, just because you are aware that she has been bound and flogged before, doesn’t mean she is comfortable receiving this from you. If you going to scene with a person for the first time, it is your absolute responsibility to discover all of these things and make sure she knows and consents to all possible tools you will employ.
Competence. Being a sadist means you get off on giving pain and humiliation to others. Being a competent sadist does this with a style and creativity that makes the scene an interactive, artistic expression. You are often in a role. It’s as if you are on a stage, you are the leading actor and she is your actress. You need to know more than just how to swing a flogger. Your moves should be fluid, controlled and in response to her. This is something that comes with practice, just like any other skill. When you are learning, seek the advice of other sadists in your area. Go to events. See how others do it. Inform those you scene with that you are learning. Never over-represent your knowledge or skill. It is dangerous, weak-minded and shameful.
Conscientious. There is a thin line between an ethical sadist and a psychopath. We are, after all, deriving sexual gratification from hurting a woman. It is our duty to her to remain mindful that her act of submission is a gift. We are only able to do these things to her because she allows it. She has put trust in us. While we will obviously get “into” the scene, we must have the strength to maintain presence of mind and never go too far. When she enters into subspace, she may reach a point where she is not aware that she should use her safe word. You knew her limits prior to beginning, do not push past them even if she does not protest.
These are defining characteristics that we should not waver from. They are the core ethics that guide us and allow us to express our desires in a safe and healthy manner. If you do not adhere to them, then you are undeserving of the gift she offers.