Yesterday I heard something interesting, a friend of mine loves to be spanked but has a fear for whips. So she prefers to be spanked with a paddle, which is less frightening for her. But are whips really that scary?
Well I would say that depends on the person who´s handling the whip, a true sadist will be less merciful than a dom/domme. Also it helps if you know the person who wields the whip, there should always be a connection (a form of trust) between a dom/domme and a sub. Discuss how far you want to go and always have a safeword, in case you feel like you can´t take anymore in the middle of a session.
But there is no shame in using a paddle, it doesn´t make you less of a dom/domme if you prefer to use a paddle on your sub and it doesn´t make you a bad sub if you prefer a paddle over a whip. I´d say it shows you´re more than just your average dom/domme or sub when you explore further than the first things that come to mind.
Unfortunately there are also people who seem to object to whips because they think it´s sick to hit other people with a whip. When I look to equestrians who hit their horse with a whip, I don´t hear anything from these people. So am I to believe that it´s ok to hit an animal with a whip but it´s sick when you hit a human? I think that people who seem so concerned about their fellow humans should pay more attention to what they´re objecting against. Besides what people do in their private bedrooms shouldn´t concern them at all!!!!
A whip speaks to your imagination, maybe for good and maybe for bad. But often a dominatrix is pictured with a whip, so it does seem to be a part of the identification of one. Still that doesn´t mean that you have to wield one to be identified as one. Being dominant is much more than just spanking someone with a whip.
In the end a whip is nothing to be afraid of, the only fear you could have is for the person who wields it. But that is more a problem with trust than with whips....