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How can you afford Park Slope? Run a feminist BDSM dungeon in your apartment

A Brooklyn resident found a creative solution to rising real estate prices


Anna Silman
March 7, 2015 1:58AM (UTC)

Brooklyn, soon to be the proud home of a Tonya Harding/Nancy Kerrigan museum, can add another eclectic cultural institution to its roster: A feminist BDSM dungeon courtesy of Park Slope resident "Jennifer P." (not her real name).

While Christian Grey never had to worry about falling short on rent, for a cash-strapped millennial living in New York City, navigating the city's ridiculous real-estate prices can require some creative solutions. Brooklyn Based reports that the 24-year-old writer and cartoonist opened the BDSM dungeon as a way to make money after her roommate moved out.

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Contrary to popular belief, BDSM dungeons are legal as long as people don't have sex in them, and Jennifer told the magazine that she isn't ashamed of her business. “A lot of people look at it likes it’s so absurd and immoral. It’s not. Basically everyone that you know has some secret sexual interest . . . So I don’t think there should be any stigma attached to it. Then again, if there wasn’t stigma the market wouldn’t be as big. Keep shaming them, actually.”

Up until recently, Jennifer leased out the room to clients for $150-250 bucks per session, in a model similar to Airbnb, which enabled her to take in an income of about $3,000 a month. She describes her dungeon as a feminist enterprise, offering no female submission and giving dominatrixes 60 percent of what they make. Most dungeons are male-owned and provide women only 40 percent of the profits.

Unfortunately Jennifer’s lease was terminated recently, but she’s looking for another apartment in which to reopen her dungeon, with her long-term goal to launch a "bigger, established, feminist dungeon." While it may not be the most conventional job, she says she enjoys the freedom the dungeon affords her to run her own business, have flexible hours and work alongside friends. “This job allows me to be creative," she told Brooklyn Based. "I control who comes in and out. I’m not a control freak, but I want to be in control of my life." Well said!


Anna Silman

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