Hello party people. It’s been awhile since I actually ranted about something, so here’s a tirade for you to ponder on your Earth Day.
There is a phrase that has become so ubiquitous in the BDSM culture that it is literally written on t-shirts and mugs that you can buy from dropshippers worldwide – but it is just plain wrong and it sticks in my craw every time I read it or hear someone say it.
“My submission is a gift…”
This is usually followed by other such sundry tripe as, “… and any man who can’t understand that doesn’t deserve it,” or “… and if it is not respected, I will take it back.”
This is wrong.
It’s a terrible metaphor and we really need to stop using it. Submission is merely half of a power exchange negotiation. It represents something different for every power dynamic, and every couple or group. Submission, like almost everything else that we deal with in this thing that we do represents a spectrum of possibilities.
Submission is not a gift. A gift is something that you give to someone with no expectations. If you are submitting to someone with no expectations, you are doing it very, very wrong.
A gift is something that you give to someone knowing that you will never get it back. A gift is something that you give to someone because you are following a social convention, or because they are someone you care about and gifts are one of their love languages, or because you, yourself, enjoy giving things to people.
Only the worst gifts come with strings attached, and while every gift given creates some sort of socially bonded obligation on the part of the recipient – it is always acceptable at some level for the recipient of a gift to do absolutely nothing with it, or even to re-gift it to someone else. If someone were to offer me their submission and I did nothing with it – I would be doing us both a massive disservice, and if someone were to submit to me, only to have me pass that bond onto someone else, that would be a serious violation of trust (unless this is something that you negotiated prior.)
To make matters even worse, the vast majority of the people that I see using this phrase seem to think that they are somehow maintaining some level of control by trying to use this metaphor, which is completely untrue. Everything gets wrapped up in these bullshit harlequin romance novel terms and ceases to have any real meaning anymore. These sorts of modes of thinking force us to treat submission like it is a binary condition – either you are submissive or Dominant and that’s that.
It is certainly possible for a particular power dynamic to be so black and white, but that has to be negotiated to be that way. It is also just as possible for a power dynamic to be more fluid, for areas of submission to be valid under only certain conditions, or only up to certain levels of comfort, respectful of hard and soft limits.
In fact, in my not-so-very-humble opinion, binary D/s is boring and uninspired. Even if someone wants to consider themselves my property, I am not going to treat them like a slave under most conditions of normal everyday life. Not only is it exhausting, but it’s not fun.
So, if my submission is not a gift, then what is it?
It’s a negotiation. How many times do I have to say that here? In the BDSM world, everything is a negotiation.
Let me say that just one more time.
In the BDSM world, everything is a negotiation.
There is power to be shared on both sides of a power exchange negotiation, and if you have not negotiated away a particular power of yours, it remains yours.
I seriously urge anyone who is entering into a D/s relationship to think long and hard about what they want to give up and what they expect to receive as part of that power dynamic and to not only have an earnest discussion about what those things all mean for you personally, but to even write them down and codify them in a contract. This will help to prevent misunderstandings and many of the not-so-fun aspects of D/s relationship dynamics can be avoided.
Those of you who know me personally or who have been following along since before I began to recall my origins story may remember a bit of the relationship that Simone and I ultimately ended up having. She did not exploit me in the same way that the members of the Lodge did, but she did exploit me nonetheless, and in a much more direct way. The difference, of course, is that I consented to this treatment.
To this day, I do not know if Simone ever really cared for me or not. She made gestures to indicate that she did at times, and she was incredibly cold and distant at other times, but it didn’t really matter in the beginning, because I was completely smitten.
The first week or so that I was Mistress Simone’s property was a panoply of new experiences for me, the details of which are burned into my mind, but that I really can not recall here without shifting my perception to the point of discomfort. However, I can paint the broad strokes…
Over the course of several days, Mistress Simone set me up in an apartment, destroyed most of my old clothing and took me shopping to replace them with more suitable things, introduced me to several of her business associates, most of my companion chattel, and even a couple of prospective clients, though I did not know that was who they were at the time.
She introduced me to protocol, proper ways to show submission, posture, bearing, and many of the tools of the trade. I did not know it at the time, but she was being careful not to mark me. She taught me both the Top and bottom sides of each interaction, which I thought was completely normal at the time, but have come to understand is completely unique. It was a whirlwind introduction to the things that would later be expected of me.
She spoke to me a great deal about sex. She was very interested to hear about my sexual experiences with the Lodge, and I could tell that she was turned on by the ritualistic nature of things and the incorporation of sex as part of that. I often had a difficult time accurately reading Simone, but I was absolutely certain of her interest in this. She asked a great deal about my perceptions of various sexual activities, and whether or not I enjoyed doing those things with women or men. I answered her honestly, though in many cases, I did not really understand the questions that I was answering.
She hit me and made me beg and stepped on me and let me perform cunnilingus on her, but she always stopped me before her orgasm. I didn’t understand why then, and I’m not entirely sure that I do now. Whereas I was completely baffled then, I am pretty sure that I understand now. It was a power play. It was to show me how in control she was, and how – even as I learned what she liked and what she didn’t, becoming much more adept at the act – she maintained that control.
She would often command me to jack off for her, but she warned me that I was to ask her for permission to cum, and that if I were to ejaculate without permission that there would be severe consequences. I always asked her for permission to cum, but she never gave it (until much later). I made the mistake once of stopping after asking if I could cum and being told no – but I only made that mistake once. I never did ejaculate without permission, but I did occasionally become sore.
She spent several hours with me each day. I felt extremely special. I could tell that the others were jealous of the attention that I would get, but I would occasionally overhear things like, “he’s just new, the shininess will wear off soon,” or “wait until he pulls his first job and falls flat on his face,” but those things just raised my competitive spirit and furthered my isolationist tendencies – Simone became my entire world.
The psychology of her pitch was impeccable. She knew that she had me wrapped around her little finger. I felt like a million bucks, even when I was prostrate on the floor naked for her, licking the bottom (yes, the part that contacts the ground…) of her shoes. She put me in fancy clothes and a fancy apartment and was introducing me to important people. It really didn’t matter to me that much that I was getting no actual sex from this – I felt important again, special, unique. And once I felt all of those things, and I’d been divorced from contact with everyone else in my life, and I was completely and utterly dependent upon her, she told me what she really wanted me to do.
She wanted me to be a prostitute.
I’m not an idiot, and I had picked up along the way that this was what was actually going on behind the scenes, though there were also legitimate photography gigs and convention postings that were happening as well, but I already knew that the core of her business was in the sex trade, and the women that I had seen her dining with when I first encountered her were clients of hers more than friends – and she knew many such women. She even conducted events specifically targeted at this demographic – sex toy events, wine and cheese events, anything that would get the abandoned wives of Beverly Hills together… Her male clients required significantly less maintenance or cost of customer acquisition, but they were also significantly less reliable. Female clients were almost always return clients… these were the people to whom I was intended to appeal.
Forewarned of this eventuality, and fully enamored of my new life, I did not hesitate to agree, though in retrospect, I realize that I really did not have much of a choice. Simone rewarded me with what was at that time the most intense sexual experience of my life. She was Dominant with me in a way that appealed to me then, but that would result in very different reactions from me now, but she fucked the shit out of me, and while she ordered me to do things to her, she also just used me in ways that still make me pause… and then when she was done, she told me to disappear and clean myself up because I would be seeing my first client in just a few hours.
I was simultaneously excited and about as anxious as I have ever been.
Sleeping with a broken jaw is turning out to be difficult – or perhaps more accurately – turning while sleeping with a broken jaw is difficult… I keep turning over onto the side with the break while I’m sleeping and waking myself up. It is just ever-so-slightly maddening.
But it does give me lots of time to think.
I have a new submissive trainee. She is wonderful.
I want her to burn for me, and I told her that I would leave her be until today while she saves herself for me, but after today, all bets were off.
I planned to share this story with her, but I know she’ll see if it is here, and I thought perhaps the rest of my readers might benefit as well.
Plus – who doesn’t like a little voyeurism into the life of their favorite online Dom?
While slightly embellished, this is a story based on reality and the names of the parties involved have been changed to mask the identity of the guilty, but if you happen to be reading this and know who you are – I’ll gladly remove the story at your request.
I have a fetish that I have never fully satisfied. I’ve had a pretty varied sex life to date, and I’ve actively sought out every fetish that I have been able to identify so far, including this one, but I haven’t quite managed to hit the right combination of factors yet… the short version is that I have a desire to have sex with a fully unconscious woman. Consensual, of course – pre-negotiated, adhering to limit terms even while unconscious, etc. But, as you can imagine, this is a tricky thing to negotiate. It requires a seriously intense amount of trust.
My new trainee is willing to satisfy this for me, at least in theory, and for that I owe her much, including this story.
As I said, this is a fetish that I have not yet been able to fulfill, but I do have something of a confession to make. While it is true that I have not fulfilled the entire fantasy of mine, I have, sort-of, possibly, had sexual intercourse with an unconscious woman before, but she didn’t start out that way, and I didn’t drug her or anything nefarious like that.. in fact, I’m pretty sure that the experience was pretty profound for her, but I’ll relate it now in full.
I would like to preface this story with the fact that this happened several years ago, and at the time I was a very different creature, emotionally, than I am today. I was a more callous, hurt, and dangerous person, but I don’t want to sugar-coat my past.
This all happened several years ago. I was freshly broken up again, which seems to be a recurring theme in my life, but that’s not the point.
During the course of my relationship, which was mostly polyamorous, my girlfriend told me that I could have sex with anyone I wanted to with the exception of three people, two of which were her friends and the other .. is not important.
One of these friends and I had some serious sexual tension from the time we first met. Within moments of meeting, we were locked in a kiss and my girlfriend had to separate us and ask us not to pursue each other because it was going to induce Ratatosk-sized brain squirrels for her if we were to continue, so – since we both loved her – we stopped and let it drop from that point forward.
Let’s fast forward a bit to where I was broken up with. This friend was one of the few who remained friendly with me in the aftermath. I know that her motives were not entirely selfless, but then again, neither were mine. The sexual tension had never completely dissipated.
In my sorrow at being emotionally wrecked yet again, I was out drinking at a strip club and I received a text from this woman – let’s call her Ruby.
Ruby texted me, letting me know that her date turned out to be a dud and that she was home alone, waiting for her girlfriend to get back from the kink event that she was volunteering at..
Home alone safely now. Date was a total bust. The guy was at least four inches shorter than he claimed and he was about as Dominant as the gum under my shoe. Now I’m just sitting around and waiting for Ariel to get done at the Citadel. What are you up to?
Interesting, I thought to myself. It was about 10:00pm and the event that was going on was going to go until 1:00am at the earliest.
She was sitting at home, looking at three hours of doldrums ahead after having had her fires stoked for a bit by a guy who turned out to be a total schlep. I was already horny, a little bit drunk, and not looking forward to the prospect of bringing home another stripper for meaningless and somewhat risky sex.
Besides, Ruby was hot and I wanted her more than any of the girls who were hanging off of me because I’m respectful, good looking, and came with lots of cash… How can I work this to my advantage?
I’m just sitting here watching London climb the pole topless and waiting for her to finish her stage show so that I can try to talk her into blowing me in the back room.
Leave out lots of information… make the pieces that you do reveal tantalizing… tilt the direction towards the thing you want… it’s okay, she wants it too…
Oh really? Who is London? Where are you?
Absolutely. She’s a rather attractive young girl who would really like my money. I’m at the Hanky Panky, drinking way too much and trying to forget why it’s a bad idea to offer London money to suck my cock.
Damn, I’m horrible… I might as well be hanging out a sign saying, “I want sex and my inhibitions are down.” The real question is whether or not she’s really been hooked and will let me reel her in now, or if I’ll have spooked her. Even with the pre-existing tension, trying to reel her in with only a couple of text messages is pretty bold.
You mean that horrible dive bar/strip bar in Redwood City?
That’s the one.
Yuck. Isn’t that place gross?
Now I know that I have her. She’s making disparaging remarks towards the competition and seeking to elevate her place in my eyes.
Meh. It’s not so bad… once you’re six or seven drinks in, anyway.. and London is very cute. Much too young for me, but that never seems to be much of a problem.
Now I’ve reinforced my claim that I’m dis-inhibited (nevermind the fact that this is true, at the time, I was rather full of myself) and I’ve let her know that her competition actually has my attention, I should become irresistible…
You really should stop robbing the cradle, Rant. I would think that you’d have learned to appreciate the experience that comes with a few more years by now.
* evil grin *
You’re not suggesting that you would be a more suitable tribute than young London here now, are you? Besides which, you’re still several years younger than me.
Three years is not several.
I have to admit, at this point, I’m pretty excited. I’ve wanted to nail Ruby for well over a year at this point and I’ve been denying every impulse.
I can’t drive at this point, but if you’d like to come get me, I might be persuaded to leave now.
I’ll be there in ten.
Holy shit! Did that just happen?!
At this point, I have to actually get rid of London, because she really is sitting on the stool next to me with her hand in between my legs and asking me if I’d like to go back and have that ‘private dance’ with her now.
I politely tell her that I’m not feeling well and that I need to close out and leave, but I give her a $20 for sitting with me for the couple of minutes that I was arranging for what would turn out to be rather extraordinary.
I closed out my tab at the bar and walked outside, to wait for Ruby to show up to pick me up. One of the other dancers was outside and took the opportunity to chat me up and handed me a slip of paper. It happened to have a name, phone number, and email address on it. I figured I’d keep it for later, so I put it into my pocket, but I ended up losing it – sorry, Cheyenne…
Moments later, Ruby pulled up to the street next to where I was standing and rolled down the window of the passenger side door, on the curb next to me. She leaned over to look at me through the open window, “Hello, Sir. I’m ready to take you home now.”
“Thank you, Ruby,” I said as I opened the door and sat beside her in the passenger side.
“I’m not sure this is a good idea,” she said as we pulled away.
“It almost certainly is not,” I replied. “But I’m not altogether certain that I care.”
“I agree,” she said, and then not another word all the way back to her place, which was not far.
“I suppose I should have asked if you wanted me to take you home, shouldn’t I?” she asked demurely once we’d pulled into her parking spot.
“Don’t be foolish,” I said, “this has been over a year in the making. Show me upstairs.” I already knew the way to her apartment, having been there several times in the past, but I wanted her to lead me.
She led the way to her apartment and I followed.
Once inside the door, I closed it behind me and then turned around to find her only inches away from me, looking up at me, directly into my eyes.
“You don’t smell good, Sir,” she said, without the slightest hint of guile.
“Does that matter?” I asked, knowing that I was in the throes of grief and had not been taking care of myself for several days, not to mention the fact that I had recently been drinking heavily and even smoking a bit – which I am somewhat ashamed to admit that I occasionally do when I’ve been drinking.
“No. I suppose not,” she said, in the most demure voice I’d ever heard. “I want you,” she said afterwards, while looking me directly in the eyes with the most innocent eyes she could manage.
“I am here, Ruby.” I said, with all the gravitas I could summon, and shockingly, it worked! She dropped to her knees in front of me, wrapped her arms around the back of my thighs and looked up into my eyes.
“May I suck your cock, Sir? I’ve been waiting ever so long to do so.”
“You may, Ruby.”
She undid my belt, slowly, with purpose. Then she undid the button at the top of my jeans, then the next one down in the fly, then the next, and finally the last one.
As she started to pull on my pants to bring them around my ankles, I held onto my belt, pulling it free as my pants fell.
Then she brought her hands to the front of my boxer briefs and stroked the bottom of my cock, from balls to head, through the fabric of my boxer briefs.
She looked up again into my eyes, pleading for me to give her permission to pull my boxer briefs down, even though the permission was already implicit in my affirmation that she could suck my cock.
I put my hand under her chin as she lifted her head, and tilted it back.
With the other hand, which was holding my belt now, I quickly looped it around her neck and pulled it taught, dragging her upright on her knees.
Then I pushed my boxer briefs down and pulled my rigid cock free, letting go with my hand to allow the belt to settle around her neck and come to rest between her breasts, still covered by her clothing.
I grabbed the back of her neck with my free hand and guided her mouth around my cock.
I thrust slowly in and and out a few times, deeper than was comfortable for her, but not enough to cause serious discomfort.
Then I grabbed the belt again, and pulled her off of my cock, and up to her feet.
I stepped out of my pants and my boxer briefs and I walked her back, forcing her to back up several steps until she was abutted against her ottoman.
Then I let go of the belt and I leveled my sharpest gaze directly at her soul and I said in my Command Voice, “Remove your clothing and lie on this ottoman on your back. I want to eat your pussy until you scream.”
Before thoughts were registering in her mind, I think, she had removed her top and was halfway through removing her bra.
“Wait – can I put a towel down? This is new furniture….”
“Yes, of course, but if you make me wait any longer I’m going to hurt you.”
“Yes Sir!” and with that she quickly removed her remaining clothes, ran to put a towel on the ottoman, and laid down upon it, on her back, spread legs in front of me.
Cunnilingus is my favorite sex act… it allows me an awful lot of control over my partner’s orgasm, and I really like that kind of control.
I dropped to my knees and closed in on her gorgeous pussy.
I thrust my tongue deep within her and then drew it up through her inner labia to her clitoris, and as I did so, she let out an audible moan.
I focused my attention on my tongue and her clitoris for some time after that, bringing her to a state of near frenzy and backing off to deny her orgasm several times.
Eventually her frustration was staring to climb and she called out in an exasperated tone, “Sir! Are you ever going to let me cum?!”
“Why should I?” I asked in the calmest, clearest tone that I could.
“I thought you said that you weren’t a Sadist?!!?”
“I said I’m not a physical Sadist.”
“This feels pretty fucking physical to me!”
“You’re right, Ruby,” I said and then immediately put my right forefinger and middle finger into my mouth to wet them, and then thrust them with nothing held back deep into her pussy.
She exploded with her first orgasm, shaking and moaning.
I began to feather my fingers inside of her, hitting her g-spot as I put my face back between her legs and started circling her clitoris with my tongue again.
“Ugnghshg!” – She can be pretty eloquent when she’s cumming.
“ARGH!” she screamed out as every muscle in her abdomen contracted at once and she came extremely strongly, pushing my fingers out of her with the force.
“That was almost a word,” I said, sarcastically.
“ARGH!” she replied, so I stuck a finger into her asshole.
“UGHAASHUEDUDSAVJ!” she squirted all over me and pushed my fingers out of her vagina again, but the one in her asshole remained, so I curled it on her.
“HOLY FUCKNUTS!” she screamed, which I took as an invitation, so I put my fingers back inside her and attacked her clitoris with my tongue again.
“AGISDGDH! What?! WHo?! How?!?”
I straightened up so that I could look her in the face, because reactions like these really need to be seen to be understood.
I pulled my thumb up to start pushing on her clitoris.. not moving around, just steady and increasing pressure. I was kneeling above her now, so I could see the fact that she was holding her breath. She was starting to turn purple, but I didn’t want to stop what I was doing, so I pulled my finger out of her ass and stuck the tip of my cock in instead.
I began to push with my hips while I was continuing to kneed at her g-spot with my fingers and push on her clit with my thumb.
By the time I had half of the shaft of my cock in her ass she had squirted again, her eyes rolled back into her head, and her body went completely limp. Her arms flopped back behind her, and the action pulled her tits up and forward and that made me even harder, if you can believe it.
Now balls deep inside her ass with my cock, two fingers into her pussy, and putting increasing pressure on her clit with my thumb, it was clear that she had passed out. She was still breathing though, and making noises that were somewhere between a moan and a ‘coo,’ so I just kept fucking her ass.
A few moments later, I came in her ass, pulled out, pulled her body against mine and held her while she tried to catch her breath.
Eventually she came back around and she looked up at me and smiled and said, “Thank you, Sir,” before dropping her head onto my shoulder and trying to steady her breathing.
I helped her to clean herself up, and clean up the mess we’d left behind. I put on my clothes and then I walked home.
It was a pretty intense night. Some of the details I’ve glossed over and left behind. Some of the details I’ve embellished upon, but the core of the story remains true, and my desire for the real thing is unabated.
I hope you enjoyed my story.
I know that bunny is going to enjoy the reality much, much more.
Kneel for me. Look into my eyes and try to maintain eye contact for as long as you can. Give me your full attention. Do not speak until I am finished talking. I will let you know when that is.
People are not rational beings. Trust is almost always brittle and ephemeral. This process will be disorienting and frightening for you, but even before we begin, you should know that I am terrified.
Most people cannot do the things that I am going to ask you to do. Most people will break under this sort of stress, and if you break I will be there to help pick up the pieces, but we will go slowly… more slowly than even I think we need to, because if _we_ break, that will be the end of us.
But I trust you, and I trust us. And we are going to forge something unbreakable with that trust.
As we start this, you are going to think that I’m joking. The further along we get, the more doubts you will have – about whether or not I’m joking, about whether or not you can do this, whether or not you really want to do this. You will start to believe that maybe I’m crazy, or that maybe you are. You will question the motivation that brought you to this conclusion from the very beginning. Everything will feel unnatural at first, but I promise you that eventually it will seem second nature.
You are not you anymore. Not when you wear my collar. You are an extension of Me. You exist purely to reinforce my Will and Serve my needs. You will begin to learn the things that I like, not that I merely require. You will begin to anticipate my desires as well as my needs and you will feel incomplete while you know that there is anything that I am missing. The only way to feel complete again is to satisfy those needs and desires, and you will do anything in your power to be complete again.
I’m going to tell you to look into my eyes and tell me that you exist only to please me. You are going to feel silly when you do. You won’t believe it at first. You will hold back a kernel of yourself, a part of your own being, of something that is not Me. You will say the words, and you will want to mean them, but you won’t. Not at first.
I’m going to tell you to look up into my eyes and tell me that you exist only to please me. You are going to bear false witness at first. You will do as I command, but you will withhold a part of yourself. You will think to yourself, “I am choosing to do this. I want to forget myself, to let myself become this vessel for him. I want to stop being myself for a time.” But you won’t quite succeed. Not at first. Because you will have to think about it. Because you will feel insecure. You will feel like you’re acting. You will feel juvenile, pretending, silly. But you will be stepping closer towards being Mine. And once you are Mine, you will be finally Free.
You are not you anymore. Not when you wear my collar. There is one inside of you who has always known that you wanted this. You have been searching for the one who sees this need within you and who can foster it and cherish it and shape it, because you don’t have the knowledge or strength to shape it on your own. There is one inside of you who feels like she is being forced to confront a life that she does not want. You move through life uncertain of your place within it. You know that you belong somewhere, but you haven’t ever really found it.
I can show it to you.
When you wear my collar you are giving yourself to me. Completely. You are not you anymore. You are an extension of my Will and your only purpose will be to Serve my needs and desires – even those that I am not consciously aware of myself. Eventually you will know what I want and need before I do, and you will be there already, ready to provide.
In exchange for this, I will take your burdens. You will be Free. Your only purpose will be to Serve me and you can leave all of the rest of the uncertainty and doubt behind.
While you wear my collar, the rest of the world exists at the periphery, but it is unimportant. You, for as much as you connect to the world, cease to exist and become subsumed within my Will. You can leave doubt and uncertainty behind because they no longer matter. You have only one purpose and you are the very embodiment of that goal. Your mind, your body, your actions – they all become an extension of something outside of yourself. They all become a part of Me.
I will hold you within my Will and keep the world at bay. I will protect your essence and hold it for you so that when you are ready to take up the mantle again, it will be waiting for you, but for this moment, for right now, those things cannot touch you.
I will take your body and I will use it to satisfy my needs and desires. I will protect it and cherish it as I force it to conform to my desire. I will use it to control your mind. I will use it to mold the being inside of you that you give to me. I will hurt it, because positive punishment is faster and more effective at calling attention to undesirable behavior than other methods, and you seek to become the least you can as quickly as possible. You want to vanish within my Will and the fastest, surest way to do that is to call direct, immediate, and shocking attention to anything that is contrary to that goal.
I will hurt you, but I will keep you safe.
I will hurt you, but I will never injure you.
I will flay apart the pieces around the kernel within you that you give to me. I will burn away the pieces that don’t belong. I will leave behind the strength of nature itself. I will find the seed and I will nurture it until the uneasiness is gone, until the part that you held back can’t be seen separately any longer, until you are Free from the disorientation and feelings of silliness or the idea that you’re playing a role. I will break apart the bindings of the world upon this part of you and take it for myself.
You will remain, and the world around you will call upon you as it always has, but for a time, for a moment here and there, I will pull a deeper part of you free from that existence and I will hold it apart from reality, within my own Will.
You can always go back, but while you are Mine, I can show you the freedom that you always knew was hiding from you somewhere.
Okay. I’m done speaking now. Are you ready to begin?
A friend recently asked me to write on two closely related topics: foreplay as it applies to a BDSM scene, and tips for training a newbie submissive from the perspective of a Dominant.
“How are those things related?” you might be tempted to ask… Well, I’m about to tell you – as I describe the first of these topics and relate it to BDSM specifically.
In vanilla sex, foreplay is useful to ensure that both (all?) participants are physically, emotionally, and psychologically ready for the activity of sex itself. Granted, this is more often than not given lip service and not really enacted with any vigor or skill, resulting in less than adequate experiences for everyone involved, especially the more submissive partner. In the vanilla sense, I say ‘submissive’ here to mean the generally less active partner – the one less likely to initiate sexual contact. For the initiator, his resolve is already firm, his libido is already activated, and foreplay probably seems like an unnecessary waste of time.
We do the same thing in the BDSM world, but we call it warm up instead, and while foreplay may be nice in the vanilla world, warm up in the BDSM world is essential. Without it, you are putting your submissive at risk of injury in one or more of these arenas. Nay, that is not quite strong enough… without warm up before enacting the more brutal parts of a scene, if your scene involves physical pain or torture, you will injure her. Her bruises may heal and she may never let you know the damage to her trust that you caused, but those injuries will linger, and ultimately they will destroy your happiness. Don’t let that happen to you, and don’t let that happen to the one you protect.
Warm up is a much more appropriate way to describe it than foreplay, even in the vanilla world, and it may entail many of the same things, depending on the participants and scene. BDSM scenes are not limited to sexual activities, and indeed may not even include any… What you are trying to do is not limited to making sure that the submissive is ready for sex and turned on, but you’re also preparing her body physically for the activities at hand, her mind for the assault to her ego that is likely to occur, and her emotions for the departure from normalcy that she is about to encounter.
It has been proven that a submissive who is prepared for punishment will actually undergo changes in her body: more fluid will come to the surface of her skin, her pulse will drop (as opposed to speeding up in someone who is actually scared,) she will breathe deeper and more slowly, more oxygen will get into her blood and therefore to her brain, and often her perceptions of her environment will change, sometimes quite dramatically, sometimes even to the point of hallucinatory detachment or idealization.
This is far more than simple foreplay can possibly accomplish, and we even have a name for this: subspace. For many submissives – this is the primary draw of submitting. They are uninterested in the service aspects of it, they literally get high from the activity itself.
Subspace is where the submissive goes when in scene. It is not a physical place, but it does affect her body in a physical way. It is not an emotional space, but it does provide for emotional stability. It is not a psychological space, but it provides for psychological compartmentalization.
There are many paths to subspace. Warm up is not usually enough to get you there on its own. Usually finding subspace is something that isn’t achieved until firmly in scene, but the transition can be jarring, or even missed, if you don’t ensure proper warm up has occurred. I’ve known Doms who devote little or no time to warm up and go straight into scene. This can work for some people, some of the time, but the one time that you miss it, you cross the line from safe, sane, and consensual and fall into abuse. For me, it’s simply not worth the risk.
When I am training a submissive, or even when I am interacting with an experienced one, I will watch her. I want to see her fail to meet my gaze. I want to see her look down at my feet when I stare into her eyes. I want to see her round her shoulders and bend her neck towards me. I want to see her kneel or bow or even just place her forehead into my chest. I want to hear the meekness in her voice when she addresses me as Sir. These are not sacrosanct indicators of finding the edges of subspace, and they aren’t even inviolate indicators of submission, but they’re a step in the right direction.
These steps can take hours. They can begin before you’re together though, and they can wind around vanilla activities. I am a big fan of eating something, perhaps a full meal, but at least something light, before beginning a scene. The food energy will help with the physical and mental strain, and the meal itself can provide a bonding opportunity and a place for mental interactions, witty banter, and innuendo – and as any submissive will tell you, the mind is the most important part of her that you can own, for sex or play or any other activity. Alcohol is not a good idea here though. It may take off the edge, but it can also lead to physical and psychological changes in both you and your submissive that you should be wary of. I may drink with partners, but I will never engage in pain play when even the slightest bit intoxicated.
Admittedly, setting aside time for food and drink is not always possible, but there are other ways to encourage the path to subspace.
I watch my submissive, identify her specific submissive behaviors, and then I encourage these things. I stroke my submissive’s hair. I talk softly to her. I remind her of my protection and her safety. I pet her head and body. As I can feel her trust building in me, I will be more and more physical. I will grab her hair. I will bite her neck, her ear, her shoulder. I’ll fondle her tits and ass through her clothes, or reach underneath them. I’ll kiss her, or I’ll grab the sides of her face and force her to meet my eyes, to see the burning desire that lies just underneath. But these actions, like all actions taken in scene, must adhere to the limits established beforehand. For some, kissing is out, for others, biting might be, but no matter what the limits, there should be something that you can do here. If there is not, you probably need to find a different play partner.
I ease her into a place of trust and devotion and when I have that devotion, I am a veritable god.
From this point forward, I am in complete control and we are in scene. I may grab her by the throat and force her down, I may slap her ass with my hand or a flogger or a crop or a cane. But I will usually make it explicit through word or action or both that we’re about to begin. Just that simple vocal recognition is often enough to cause a seasoned submissive to drop into subspace for me. A newbie could require more care.
If I am not absolutely sure that we are ready, I might ask “are you ready?” and even when I get, “Yes, Sir,” in response, I know that is not quite sufficient. The cue has to be a command – at least for me it does. Any command here will do: “take off your clothes,” “kneel for me,” “we’re going to begin now,” are all appropriate and can all serve well here.
Excepting the striking, I tend to use most, if not all of the above for foreplay as well as warm up. In fact, much to my shock and glee, I was recently engaged in simple kinky sex with a submissive and she went rather deep into subspace without any pain of any kind at all.
That is the exception, however, and from this point forward it can still vary widely as to when, how, how deep, or even if a submissive will drop into subspace.
I should probably pause here to note that this is most definitely not the same thing as sub-drop. Sub-drop is something else entirely, and not at all positive. I’ll probably devote another entry to it at some point, but just don’t confuse the terms or people will look at you cross-eyed. Dropping into subspace is good, sub-drop is bad. Okay then…
Even when beginning your scene, especially if it is with someone new, it behooves one to start out slow. This slow roll into the scene is what is going to help a new partner or a BDSM newbie ease herself into subspace. In fact, this is what some Doms refer to when they talk about warm up. They ignore all of the pre-activity nonsense that I am so keen on and just go straight to the main event, thinking that because their first strike is only at half strength that they are engaging in good warm up practices.
While I agree that this is important, I do not agree that it is sufficient.
My goal as Dominant is to create the best experience possible for all participants. To some, this marks me a service Top and they think me weak. I don’t really care. I do what I do because it suits me, and because it gives me what I need. I get off on devotion and subservience, not delivering pain.
As I begin to enact the scene, I watch my sub carefully. I look for the signs of her being in subspace. I slowly increase the stimulation as I see her move further and further into subspace until I’m sure that she is there.
I look for the altered breathing, the flushed skin, the glazed eyes, changes to the inflection of her voice or the tenor of her movements and moaning.
It takes some practice to recognize, but once I know she’s there, I know that I can do literally anything and it will be experienced in a positive light, so it is well worth pursuing.
Not everyone will agree with me on these points. Not everyone finds it important to guide his submissive into subspace, and even I don’t find it necessary all of the time, but if you’re going to enact a scene, especially a brutal scene where pain is the primary intoxicant, it really is essential that you understand what you’re doing and how to help her get to where she needs to be in order to take the pain for you.
Let me know if you have questions, I’m happy to answer.
This was meant to educate, I hope you find it useful.