They’re the hot item right now. Which is interesting because when I started in the kink community, there was still a lot of stigma around these identities. Littles, Baby Girls and Middles were often worried or ashamed to open up about this part of themselves. There were people at munches that would give dirty looks or eye rolls, little’s scenes at events being asked to move and not being acknowledged as an actual scene. There were a lot of assumptions that these are just “daddy issues”, “incest/abuse issues”, or about pedophilia. Sure there are some that still think these short sighted and judgmental things, but there has been a huge shift in the Kink scene as of late, and with that shift comes new issues. I’m going to break this down into a few parts so as not to post a writing that is unreadably long.
First off there is the confusion about what the differences are between Littles, Middles, Baby Girls, and Adult Babies. Many people will lump them all together as “age players.” Though there can be a lot of overlap, and certainly grey areas, there are actually many differences within these groups. The one thing I’d really like to point out is, this is not “role-play” for most littles, middles and baby girls. I can’t speak for adult babies, since I don’t have any experience with them personally, but I’d imagine it’s much the same, where some are “role playing” and others it’s a true state of regression. (If you identify as ABDL, I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comment section).
“It’s not role play?!” For most, it’s not. You see, for many, “role play” implies that a person is acting. They will act out Teacher/student roles, Jailer/prisoner roles, Doctor/patient roles, and yes even adult/child roles. Role play can be very hot, and fun, but the basis is pretending to be someone you’re not. With littles, middles and baby girls, they aren’t acting. They are letting their inner child, or that sense of wonder and excitement, out to play. They are allowing themselves to let go of adulting and slipping into a headspace that feels very young and often times vulnerable. Now can people that are littles/middles/baby girls also role play? Absolutely. That’s the great thing with Kink. There can be endless crossover and blurring of the lines. One of the best things I’ve ever witnessed was a brat/little/sadist torturing her submissive.
Here is my complete oversimplifiing attempt to describe them.
Little: A person that still has a strong connection with their inner child, and will allow that part of their personality to take over. It can be for periods of time, it can be a flow in and out, and/or it might always be a little (or a lot) present even when they are in their adult headspace. Think prepubescent age for their headspace, though again this can be a flow.
Middle: Much like a little, but think more pubescent age.
Baby Girl: This one is tricky because littles and middles often identify as baby girls too. So the way I see it is, really any mental age can be a baby girl. A baby girl is someone that wants to have their partner care for or nurture them. There is often an age dynamic (ie the Daddy is actually older than the baby girl) which leads to a natural difference in life experiences that allows a Daddy to be the authority. However, there doesn’t have to be an actual age difference for people to assume these roles (not role play, many people mistake fulfilling a role as the same as pretending to be a role). Reverie isn’t always in a little headspace, but she is always my baby girl.
Age play: Role Playing or pretending to be a certain age that you aren’t (in physical years). Many littles/middles/baby girls also age play. That means their headspace is that of their inner child, and they also will add play or pretend elements to it. This can be quite confusing and hard to see where one ends and the other begins. Really, I argue that it doesn’t matter where the lines are as long as everyone is consenting and having a positive experience.
*Writing will be continued with, “Dangerous Promises you Can’t Keep”.