“A praise kink is a predisposition one has to draw erotic pleasure or excitement by either receiving or giving praise to a partner,” explains Kyle Zrenchik, Ph.D., LMFT, ACS, a couples’ and sex therapist and clinical director at ALL IN Therapy Clinic in Minneapolis. “Someone with a praise kink ‘gets off’ by showering or being showered with praise, compliments, and attention.”
In general, a kink is anything that is particularly arousing for a person, particularly things or sexual behaviors that are considered nonnormative. Praise kinks are reasonably common, says Zrenchik, since “praise as a mechanism for pleasure” is widespread. That said, he prefers to see kinks as lying on a spectrum rather than a binary–that is, it’s a little simplistic to say that everyone either absolutely has or absolutely does not have a praise kink.