For The Love of a Submissive
NSFW - Over 18 Only Please
Dominants are not great because of their technique but because of their passion, honor and integrity.
Submissives are not great because of their obedience but because of their love, trust and devotion.
Welcome! Here I share my views of loving and sensual Dominance and submission and other forms of power exchange. I am a 40-something male who relishes the mental, sensual, emotional and sexual aspects of D/s relationships. To me, D/s is first and foremost about the mind once a mental and emotional D/s bond is established, the body has no choice but to follow. Feel free to look around, share your thoughts and feelings with me, and generally engage in a dialogue on the topic.
Frequently Asked Questions About D/s Relationships and BDSM
More About This Site and its Author
The Reading Room - A place where you can find links to the fictional D/s stories and non-fiction posts by the blog's author.
The Reference Room - Sources of good information (books and links) for those interested in exploring D/s and BDSM
"For the Love of a Sub Photo Gallery" - A companion photo blog that contains D/s images not seen on this site. New photos added continuously.
Originally, the "For The Love of a Submissive" blog was designed to tell a fictional story of Domination and submission and the first 480 posts make up that story. The blog progressed chronologically from the start of the relationship to the conclusion of the story and as such is best read from the beginning. You can find the story and navigate to the various "chapters" directly using the links contained in The Reading Room.
Direction and Acceptance
One of the many joys of being a Dom and experiencing the submission of a willing accomplice is the ability to direct the action. I do not mean barking orders or having my way physically with a sub. No, what I am referring to in this instance is the ability to direct her actions upon herself when she is her own tormentor, ravisher, or enchanter acting solely in response to my thoughts and words. It is a grown-up version of playing the puppeteer, pulling the strings of the marionette. This is not your father’s cheesy puppet show though no early black and white television Kukla, Fran and Ollie is this. No, this is very real, and highly erotic.
In life, we all want to be the producer, director and leading actor of our own play. If only all the other actors would just do as they were told, would read the script we have written for them, say their lines on cue. If only the scenery were just so, everything would be perfect! We would be completely happy. Trouble is, not only do the other actors in real life not read our lines on cue they have their own scripts, and their own plays where they are the star. How dare they! So we rail against life and struggle to get everyone in their positions on cue, reciting the lines we have prepared for them. Rarely if ever does it work. If only we possessed the acceptance of a submissive.
In the parallel universe we call D/s, we can actually construct the stage and set, write the script and musical score, and direct the action and dialogue as we so desire. But it takes a willing accomplice, a submissive that shares the same vision and is willing to apply the extreme level of acceptance to our direction that would seemingly serve us all so well in life. In so doing, she fulfills many of her own desires but also her Dom’s wish to exercise absolute control, or at least revel in the illusion of doing so. The curtain goes up, the Dom directs and the sub plays her part.
This is particularly poignant when I direct my Muse to act not upon me but upon herself for better or worse. It is one thing to direct her to please me in some way, but directing her to please or deny herself takes submission to an entirely different level. Not only must she act upon my direction but also must exhibit the will to suffer or revel in the sensations brought by her own hand. Start, stop. Faster, slower. Harder, softer. I command the action and pace, she performs the deed and experiences the consequences, gladly, willingly, and submissively.
This to me is one of the extreme forms of submission and indeed requires a remarkable level of simultaneous self-will and acceptance on the part of a submissive. It is a powerful paradox that she displays the will to carry out the deed by her own hand and the acceptance to tolerate its effects, all in response to my wishes. Can there be anything more rewarding than this for a Dom? This is not about my physical gratification this is about extreme mental and emotional gratification.
Sure, every Dom wants to get his rocks off and enjoy the pleasures of the flesh. Who doesn’t? But the real depth, the real joy for me is in the thrill and sense of honor, duty and responsibility I feel when my Muse propels herself into these most submissive moments. My proverbial living puppet.
But what cannot be sensed and enjoyed from a mere puppet is the very human reaction such experiences bring. The ecstasy and delicious frustration as I command her to please herself, edging or peaking over and over again, permitting unrelenting pleasure while denying desperately sought release. Or conversely the agony and relentless desire for cessation when I direct her to pinch here or squeeze there, harder and harder, as the pain tries desperately to overcome the will. I love to observe the internal struggle played out across her face between self-will and self-preservation whether in pain or pleasure, most likely a mixture of both. This is when I experience her submission in one of its richest and deepest forms. This is when she gives herself to me as no other can or would. This is when I feel a depth of gratitude for her indescribable.
For a brief time, I am actually the director and producer of my own play, yet never the leading actor. That honor has always been, and will always be, reserved for none other than my Muse.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2012
Image Credit Unknown
The utter submission of clasped elbows behind her back and the absolute control exhibited by his hand placement immediately catches my eye. But it is what this image cannot convey that most captivates me and leads me to identify with it. The whisper. The hoarse low commands, statements, threats and desires breathily uttered in her ear. It is not the firm grasp on her jaw or the probing fingers at her sex that freezes her in this tableau of submission. It is his words.
Whispered utterances have such greater impact than barked commands. They irrepressibly march their way into her ear and thence to her mind throwing a switch of submission like no other. And the words need not be lengthy or particularly articulate provided they are delivered with intensity of feeling and from the heart.
Perhaps he is telling her that she is to stand there while he fingers her clit endlessly and that she is neither to cum or collapse to the floor in the process. Perhaps he is telling her how he is going to own her and take her for the rest of the evening. Perhaps he is telling her how she is his good girl or conversely how she has fallen down in his expectations of her. Perhaps he is in fact telling her how she will be punished for her transgressions and why.
These little speeches have a time and place and can certainly lead to memorable experiences of sexual dominance and submission. They can set the tone and establish the mood. They can be loving and tender or harsh and abrasive. But they need never be loud. The message is well delivered and often best received nearly soto voce.
But I find that few things can throw the proverbial switch of submission in the mind of my Muse more quickly and completely then a simple controlling physical gesture combined with a single word whispered with the utmost feeling and intensity. A single word that can propel us from our vanilla existence where she is not so terribly submissive and I am not so terribly dominant to our respective roles of absolute power exchange. Four small letters that when delivered from my lips to her ear instantly changes everything about us and we become our other selves the ones we do not let out of the shadows except with each other. A single word that marks the bright line between everyday life and our special place where all the rules are different and yet ever so comfortable.
A single whispered word.
A parallel universe inhabited.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2012
Image Credit Unknown
Releasing Our Inner Freak
I cannot help but chuckle as those words flow out of my fingertips and onto the screen. Our inner freak. Ha! Let’s face it, we all have one…every single one of us…or we would not be here right now. That’s right, everyone one of the thousands of people who follow this blog has a raging inner freak just dying to be released. Some of us do it better than others. Some of us only dream of actually living the life that our inner freak proposes. And a few still deny that the little freak is even there at all.
I use the term inner freak cautiously because to most, the word freak implies deviance someone who lives outside the norms of society. Something to be stared at behind the hawkers’ curtain at the carnival. You know, the three armed man or the six legged woman with three vaginas just awaiting to serve your pleasure. Step right up ladies and gentlemen for the most amazing spectacle on the Earth!
That is not my inner freak and it is probably not yours either. My inner freak is quite normal thank you very much…he is just a little different than the me you see on the outside. My inner freak is really quite lovable. He is like Bugs Bunny meets the Tasmanian Devil meets the Marquis de Sade. My freak is smart, happy, funny, sexy, eager, just a little wild and even a little more dark and diabolical. He lurks in the shadows of my outwardly professional and staid exterior. He only comes out to play when I feel really comfortable with someone…when the level of trust is sufficiently high…when I am certain that he will not make you run away or stand and scoff. My inner freak can be shy and retiring most of the time. He hangs back waiting for the right one to come along and welcome him into the light. But when he comes out, oh boy, the fun really begins!
So we all have this freak waiting to be released. It does not matter what mask we wear on the outside gang banger or librarian, doctor or ditch digger, parent (grandparent?) or wild-eyed teen, we all have that other self aching to express its feelings in fantasy, words and deeds. Some never get beyond the fantasy and that is a shame really. Others finds ways to anonymously express their inner freak, as evidenced by the thousands of personal blogs out there that dance on the fringe of freakiness or even dive in head first. But for the brave and fortunate few who actually step beyond the confines of their fantasies or their blogs, there is a brave new world awaiting (with apologies to Aldous Huxley).
Huxley wrote of hedonism and the dangers of self-gratification and there is much to be learned there and applied here. For me though, the one who comes along and can free my inner freak is in fact my Soma. I live for it. I work for it. I blog for it. Finding that other person who can release my other self and for whom I can do the same is the most wonderful of rewards. And it is addictive. Strikingly so. It is my Soma, my drug, my happy place. When my inner freak meets my outer self and we finally act as one, I feel whole, complete, at peace. The one who draws out my normally reserved freak and helps marry him to my external self gets the whole package…the whole me. They get to experience the full power of everything I am…and, for a change, so do I. And that is worth pursuing and working for.
But how does this happen? How does someone come along and draw out my little freak? Do they just walk up when I least expect it and say “Hey, I bet you have a really cool inner freak and I want to party with him?” Hell no! It takes work. Lots and lots of work. Cultivating relationships. Listening. Gaining trust and respect. Building a mutual space of comfort where little-by-little we can feel safe being vulnerable for a while, actively working to draw out each other’s inner freak. Then, and only then does my crazy little freak peer from behind the shadows and step cautiously out to play. But I have to do the hard work. I have to create the space and the comfort. Its not the big bang, rather more like a slow reveal. But when I do the work, and someone else comes along who tries just as hard as I am, look out! The freaks come out to play and the sparks are going to fly! Its like the excitement of running out of class on the last day of the school year. The ultimate summer vacation finding my playmate, grasping her by the hand and running out into the warm sunshine.
So I say to anyone who takes the time to read this, let your freak out to play. Do the hard work necessary to build the relationships with others that gives you the comfort and safety to let that other self come out and become married to your outer self even just for a little while…even just behind closed doors. I promise you, with the right other freak by your side, you will experience joys previously unknown and perhaps feel whole and complete for the first time in your life.
So get your freak on and go exploring…you will be amazed at what you learn about your self.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2012
Image © Sunny Leone
We have rules galore, we Doms do. We have codes of conduct, accepted means of being addressed, expectations of proper speech and behavior, rigid norms for compliance and consequences for non-compliance. We expect that our submissives adhere to these rules and be respectful of us at all times. But a submissive is not an automaton. She is flesh and blood, and above all, human. She may be submissive but she still has a personality, at least any woman does that I would desire as my Muse.
So it becomes a matter of degree how submissive a submissive is expected to be, and it will be different in every relationship. I think the first time I walked the path of trying to be a dom I tended to be authoritarian and expect complete submission. Anything less, and I felt my sub was being disrespectful and a challenge to my authority. In these first tentative experiences I lacked confidence and my ego was bruised if I were subject to back talk, sarcasm, defiant looks, or just a little passive aggressive behavior seeking to gain the upper hand. Each instance seemed like an affront that had to be met with rapid and stern intervention. I was no dom at all at that point, I was just pretending to be one…trying it on for size. We all start somewhere.
Today I feel much differently. Perhaps it is the passage of years that have worn a groove of comfort into my being, self-confidence gained over a lifetime. Perhaps it is experience and the recognition that I do not have to be all-powerful to be powerful enough. For whatever reason, I now realize that it is just fine to encourage my submissive to be herself and permit her vanilla side to surface now and then, within bounds. She will always test the waters, press a little here and there, see how I may react. And by letting her do so, we have more fun and can in fact be playful and joyful with one another. It is not a challenge to my authority or capability as a Dom. In fact, it is an open invitation to do something about it that gives me the power to decide when, where, and under what circumstances. It is almost a greater form of power the power of restraint as well as action.
Most of the time I simply accept that this playful and verbal tendency of my sub is just a part of who we are…a most beautiful and joyous part. And sometimes I allow it because it gives me reason, at any point in time to respond and put a stop to it. Indeed it is just a permanent excuse for me to be able to pull her across my knee at any given moment, rub her bottom lecturing about her cheeky and disrespectful ways, turn her ass a rosy shade of pink, and subsequently probe her hot wet folds turning pleas for mercy into pleadings for merciful release.
Perhaps it really is not about growing up or growing wiser after all. Perhaps it is simply a matter of becoming craftier. Age and treachery wins out over youth and enthusiasm every time. Freedom of expression is a wonderful thing, and by allowing my sub the wiggle room to express herself, I am also giving her all the scope she needs to hang herself. In this case the judge, jury and executioner is me, and I can be a most capricious arbiter of justice. Her choice of words, her look or her tone of voice forms the noose, my lap is the gallows, and my hand the executioner. But every now and then the executioner is also the savior turning stinging penance into ecstatic salvation.
So go ahead and take all the latitude you like my Muse, express yourself and test the boundaries to your hearts’ content. You know the consequences as well as I do, you just do not know when they will be prevailed upon you.
So enjoy yourself, I’ll be sure to let you know when you have gone too far.
My cheeky one.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2012
Image Credit Unknown
Among the many joys I experience as a Dom is the empowerment to simply take my time and truly enjoy the beauty of an experience. No longer do I feel rushed to embrace a moment before it passes me by. No longer do I feel a desperation to grasp what is within my reach for fear of it slipping away. No longer do I have a sense of urgency to take or give and in so doing prove myself to the donor or recipient. No. Today I take quite the opposite tack and savor the gifts of a moment and prolong it as much as possible.
The power that is granted me by a submissive is not just the power to command action or inaction but also the power to elongate time. When she stands or kneels before me I have no reason to rush, no deadline to meet, no goal that must be achieved. Indeed, I am granted all the time I want to relish in the beauty and privilege before me. Why rush to touch, take, or command, when perhaps the greatest pleasure can be had in simply sitting back and taking it all in? Why not bathe myself in the aura of the power you give me and savor the tension, anticipation, and sometimes even fear that emanates from the moment? Why rush headlong into the next moment when the present is so very, very satisfying?
So I just sit back and relax. Allow the moment to bathe me in its power. Feel the significance of the present and in so doing heighten her awareness of my power and its ability to alter the future. The longer I sit in repose, the more powerful I feel. The more powerful I feel, the greater her sense of submission. The greater her sense of submission, the greater my power. It is one magnificent and ever-growing loop of energy.
I need not flail. I need not possess. I need not caress. I need only sit back in silence and appreciate the beauty, majesty and aura of the submission before me and bask in the glow of the power it affords me. From a distance.
Projected power. I project and she absorbs. Plenty of time for all else. Later.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2012
Image Credit Unknown
Here in the online world of Domination and submission, both real and imagined, we tend to be bombarded and consumed by fascinating and titillating BDSM imagery. Naturally, the vast majority of these images are staged for our entertainment. They are populated by people who do not look like us, doing things most of us only imagine. For the most part, these images focus on the more sadistic and mosochistic sides of BDSM because this is what plays well in imagery. They are high on masturbatory value but convey little of the true meaning behind a D/s relationship.
I for one gain the most gratification within a D/s relationship from the emotional, mental and spiritual bond between two loving and caring D/s partners. The sex is great, the beauty of her nudity amazing, and her willingness to please most gratifying. But more than that, much more, is the awe-inspiring sense of gratitude and humility I feel when the woman I am attracted to, respect and care for, chooses of her own volition to kneel before for me and present herself, heart, mind, body, and spirit.
Some time ago the woman who became my Muse, after months of conversation and getting to know one another, asked what it would take to become a submissive. We talked about it and compared notes on preferences, likes, dislikes, desires, fears, and many other topics, arriving at a mutual but never fully communicated recognition that we were potentially very compatible with one another. When she asked, “How do I go about doing something like this?” and it became clear that she was interested in exploring a D/s relationship with me, my response was simple and uncomplicated. “You need only ask.” Naturally, I described in more detail the art of presentation, which of course was slightly ritualized, but that only added to the significance of such a request.
One day, not long after, the woman who became my Muse presented herself to me precisely as I described on her knees, palms upraised, head bowed, and asked politely and earnestly if I would take her as my submissive and guide her and train her in the art of Domination and submission. I stand here today to tell you that there is nothing in all of the BDSM imagery on the Net that can begin to convey the power, majesty, and humility of that moment. When a woman you respect, adore, and admire presents herself to her Dom or potential Dom in this manner there is little else in life that I know of that can inspire the emotion and humbling sense of awe I feel in that moment. I can only compare it to the moment of saying “I do” at the altar, or the birth of a child.
When a woman strips herself bare of not only the clothes that cover her body, but also the shackles of a lifetime of conditioning and insecurities, finds the strength to kneel before another and ask to be taken, it is truly the most powerful moment in a BDSM relationship. Oh, there are many, many other powerful moments and experiences, and I routinely feel a sense of awe and gratitude as she continues to find new ways to display her submission and desire to learn and grow. But none for me can compare to the power, majesty, humility, and grace that I feel when the right woman holds out her trembling hand and heart and asks to be taken.
This is truly a defining moment, not only in a relationship but also in a life. Any man fortunate enough to have this experience should treat it with the awe, humility and respect it deserves. For, short of witnessing the birth for your first child, there is little I can think of in this life that compares to the awesome sense of gratitude and responsibility this defining moment brings.
Be worthy of such a moment.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2012
Image © Donatien de Dase
The Rewards of a Submissive
Much is written of submission on blogs and in chat rooms, and images abound of “submissive’s” and their so-called “Doms.” But what most BDSM sites and blogs present is entertainment, sexual titillation, and at times outright coercion and abuse rather than an exploration of genuine submission and the amazing rewards it can bring to a Dom. Earning the submission of another human being is a process that takes patience, dedication, concern, love, empathy, listening skills, and above all, integrity. But if or when it happens, the feeling is indescribable!
Submission is earned it is neither coerced or manipulated. And to be meaningful for me, it must come from a woman whom I unreservedly revere and admire. The greater her will, intellect, artistic ability, grace, kindness and beauty, the greater the reward of earning her submission. To that end, earning the submission of such a woman is not the end state but rather just the beginning, because I want more. More of her. All of her. And to do that, she must be allowed to grow to her full potential, which means giving her the space and encouragement to be everything she is capable of being. She is the gift. The better and more whole she is, the more precious the gift to me.
Therefor, to my way of thinking, a submissive is not a slave. Quite the opposite. She is a free being who has chosen of her own will to give herself unreservedly to me. Catching a hummingbird in a net just feels mean spirited and destructive. Having that same hummingbird land on your fingertip of its own accord is a soaring experience. So it is for me with a woman’s submission.
There are many woman (and men) who are so insecure they will throw themselves at the feet of a Dom for mere acceptance and the illusion of love. This is not submission, it is desperation. In it, there is little reward for a Dom beyond pitty and satisfying their own broken wing syndrome rescuing. This is not submission, it is codependence and is vastly unhealthy for all involved.
But, when a would-be Dom can reach into the mind of a confident, well-read, intelligent and capable woman, captivating her imagination and earning her respect and adoration, magic happens! When she bends her knees of her own accord. When you see the look of adoration in her eyes. When she unreservedly gives you her heart, mind, and soul. Pure Magic!
BDSM, S/M, and D/s imagery focusses most on the physical aspects of the power exchange. This is only natural…it is what the camera sees best. Only the occasional image adequately begins to convey the strength and beauty of the spiritual and emotional bond between a submissive and her Dom. But when it does, it is a special picture and genuinely stands out. Usually the devotion shows first in the eyes and secondarily in the postures of the Dom and/or his submissive. Feelings are so difficult to capture in an image and yet they are the essence of D/s.
In real life, the reward for me of submission is 90 percent mental, spiritual and emotional. When the bond is strong and the challenge of successfully leading a submissive is great, my heart and mind become immersed in the relationship and how to make it stronger and more fulfilling for both of us. My brain is fully engaged. My imagination is energized. My heart beats stronger. I want to be a better man and a better Dom…every day. I want to be all that I possibly can and in so doing inspire and motivate my submissive to strive for her full potential.
D/s between a healthy and confident man and woman (or any combination of the sexes) is an immensely positive relationship. Far from the dark imagery of floggings and physical challenges, it is a spiritually uplifting experience. And with that spiritual bond firmly established between a Dom and a sub, the bodies have no choice but to follow. With the combination of mutual devotion, trust and adoration, comes an environment where all physical experiences and rewards become possible. In that secure space that we create and nurture between us we can indulge in the physical, dance in the darkness, and explore the power exchange in all of its physical manifestations. More magic!
To the submissive - Give your heart, your mind, your soul to the right Dom and he will give you physical and emotional sensations unimaginable.
To the Dom - Lead genuinely with your heart and mind and the body will follow.
Caption © For the Love of A Submissive, 2012
Image Credit Unknown
On Being My Joy.
I have strong feelings about the D/s dynamic and my role as a sensual Dominant. I take the time to know my girl’s wants, needs, hopes, fears, hungers, and desires - and I do my best to reach deep within. My goal is to peel back inhibitions, shyness, and/or protective layers of societal “do’s and dont’s” and to free her to her own erotic “core”. If I am successful - the result is a beautiful merging of two hearts, two minds, and two souls into one incredible journey of exploration and bliss.
I am highly selective in my choice of submissive. She must be intelligent, talented, beautiful, and intriguing. She must be successful and have passions and pursuits beyond the more obvious pleasures of the flesh. In her sexuality, she must be naturally submissive (if only to me). She must also be enthusiastic, talented, eager to please, and willing to learn and develop as we step forward.
I make it clear at the onset - I aspire to complete her. I am her Dominant, mentor, teacher and trainer, partner, friend, and companion. I challenge her, use her completely for my pleasure, and instruct her. But as I bring her forward - I give back. I want to be the single most amazing erotic and positive influence in her life. I strive to be her joy.
I have trained many girls over the years. Given this legacy, my current girl asked if I would grow bored and seek interactions with more experienced submissives. I smiled and related how the two of us had many “firsts” before us. She pressed again. I admonished her gently, and communicated my sentiments:
"You are my joy".
I elaborated, explaining how her instincts were natural and perfect. While many submissives become obsessed about what happens to them, she had immersed herself in pleasing me - and had already surpassed my expectations. This is what a Dominant ultimately hopes for in a girl - the primal desire to please and to be pleasing in the process. I call it a submissive’s hunger - the ways in which she yearns.
Her instincts manifested daily. She would attend to me in the shower, massage me if I was weary, and even care for my feet if they were sore. She would serve me beverages and snacks as I relaxed with a movie or a televised sporting event. She seemed natural in service to me.
In the sensual space, she was amazing. She became a student in the pathway to my pleasure. She listened intently as I related favorite spots and techniques. She followed directions and assimilated knowledge instantly - becoming the most sexually pleasing woman I have known.
But she did more. As she grew with me and learned of my unmet desires (my BDSM bucket list), she would ask for details during quiet times together. I could sense she was committing items to memory - and it would always make me smile.
This photo is a beautiful representation of what it is to be my joy. I had previously related a long-standing wish to take a girl on the floor before a roaring fire - in a ski chalet - on a winter vacation. I wanted the experience to be deeply decadent - full of animal hunger - and I wanted to sate myself with willing flesh before me.
Imagine my surprise when my girl invited me on a ski vacation - in a condo with a fireplace. Imagine further my surprise when I lit a fire, went to the bedroom to change - and returned to find her as you see here. She was in perfect service position (one of the first bits of protocol I had taught her) and she was absolutely stunning in the firelight.
I had my bag open in a flash, but for all my implements and all my technique, I could not tear myself away from the erotic beauty and allure before me. The implements lay in place - the rope untouched - as I took her hard - thrusting deeply until she had to brace herself with outstretched hands on the hearth before her. I fucked her with abandon, quickly surged - and roared out my climax, bucking arrhythmically, as she panted and moaned in her own pleasure - thrilled at being the source of my animal hunger.
This is the beauty of a D/s journey with a perfect submissive. This is what it means to be my joy.
How I love this dance - on the fringe of darkness.
© Fringe of Darkness dancingonthefringe 2014
Come visit my archive at: Dancing On The Fringe dancingonthefringe
One of the traits I most appreciate in submissive women is the pride with which they approach their submission and the myriad tasks performed within it.
Society has evolved to a place where being a woman who is overtly submissive to a man is frowned upon as being “old fashioned” at best and a sign of archaic sexist dominance and subjugation of the female spirit at worst. Today, it is almost taboo to be a publicly submissive female to a male figure. Vanilla friends, family and co-workers would admonish any woman who appeared to be overly submissive to her male partner to get out of the “imprisoning” and “abusive” relationship. No wonder so many women crave an opportunity to submit completely to another. Society has made it all but impossible to do so and it has become the great taboo and an unfulfilled wish of many.
In instances where a woman finds a competent and caring Dom who can draw out and enable her submissive side, it is remarkable to see the intensity and seriousness with which she approaches her submissive role and the tasks within it. The pride she takes in being the best she can be for her Master never ceases to amaze and fulfill me. She gives tremendous thought to her actions, presentation, skills, words, and deeds. She continually strives to be better at all she does. She takes enormous pride in her accomplishments and in anticipating the needs, and meeting the challenges, her Master sets forth.
This is why physical correction and punishment is so rarely required to improve performance or correct behavior in my experience. The pride a submissive takes in her efforts is crushed upon the realization that she has displeased her Master or failed to measure up in some manner. Gentle coaching and correction is all that is required when you have a submissive woman under your hand who genuinely takes pride in her submission.
But beware. The pride that leads to such remarkable performance by a sub has a dark side.
When a submissive takes so much pride in her efforts that she becomes obsessed with being perfect for her Master at all times, a destructive force begins to creep into the relationship. No one, no matter how well-intended or filled with pride at a job well done, can possibly be perfect all the time. And if a perfectionist submissive is paired with an intolerant and domineering Dom then things can spiral out of control rather quickly and relentlessly, leaving the submissive to feel perpetually inadequate and subsequently unfulfilled.
It is important as a Dom to set high standards and expect a high level of performance in all his submissive attempts and accomplishes or she will be unfulfilled. She will interpret anything less than high standards as weakness on the part of her Dom and naturally tend to lose interest. But it is equally important not to fall into the trap of demanding unattainable perfectionism which will only breed frustration and prevent a sub from settling into her place of comfort, serenity and service. There is a point at which performance must be deemed good enough and should be praised and rewarded. Doing so will build a sense of pride and nurture a subs natural tendency to want to continue to please and perform to ever higher standards.
Use a submissive’s natural pride and sense of perfectionism as a tool to motivate her performance and desire to continually improve. But do not take advantage of, or abuse this natural sense, or you will quickly find yourself with a frustrated and despondent sub and run the risk of destroying what might otherwise have been a healthy and rewarding D/s relationship.
Build her pride. Use it to motivate. Bruise it once in a while to correct. But never tear it down or break it. For once destroyed, pride is very hard or impossible to build back up again.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2012
Image © Perry Gallagher
When the mood and ability of a submissive is matched perfectly with the pace and intensity of the challenge or predicament that is when the magic happens.
When she is so intensely focussed on the sensations she is experiencing or on denying her reaction to those sensations there is a look, an intensity, a withdrawl to a place within.
This is the look that tells a Dominant that he is achieving all he set out to accomplish.
When she is straining to peacefully accept the discomfort of the bondage.
When she is absorbing the blows and internalizing the feeling of each one.
When she is focussed on nothing else in the world except desperately holding back the floodgates of orgasm at your command.
When she has no other thought than being in the moment, internalizing all that her Dom is doing to, for, and with her. When there is no world beyond the space between Master and sub.
This is the moment I work so hard for and that she gives so much for. When there is only the two of us in this moment and nothing else matters. No cares. No needs. No distractions. Only mutual and complimentary desire.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2012
Image © Playboy Magazine Model: Andrea Vetsch
When all is said and done and you have absorbed all of the energy her submission has to give, blanket her, cradle her, and ensure that she knows how important she is and that no one else could move you as she does.
A submissive gives to her Master from the very core of her soul until she is exhausted and empty. Bathe her in the radiant glow of her own dissipated energy. Give back that which she has given and you have so fully taken, and she will give again, and again, and again.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2012
Image from Medita Music Video Ceylon
Dominance and submission relationships have both a commanding and firm side and a nurturing and soft side. Like yin and yang, you cannot fully appreciate the power and impact of one without the other. And, to have a deeply fulfilling and lasting D/s relationship a Master must be genuine in striving to maintain both in proper balance at all times.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2012
Image Credit Unknown
So often we fixate on the dark side of BDSM and D/s relationships the challenges, sexual predicaments, corrections and punishments. What is often lost is the almost addictive emotional connection that can be felt between a Dom and his submissive. Some have labeled this bond as almost codependent and indeed if not handled correctly or by healthy and mature adults it certainly can be.
But what I want to share is the lighter side of a sensual and loving D/s relationship. Sure I appreciate and make a part of my D/s life the darker arts of BDSM, but there is so much more to it than that. If what you get from D/s is a series of BDSM scenes of ever increasing intensity with random partners then I suppose that is alright for some. But I need a deeper connection and that is at the heart of a sensual D/s relationship for me. This bond is deep and intensely connected, emotional, and yes, at its core, loving.
When I look at the image above, I see the very essence of that loving bond between a Dom and his sub. She had no doubt been instructed to sit on the edge of the bed with her legs spread wide (as is always appropriate) and await her master. When he eventually entered the bedroom he did not go directly to her or likely even acknowledge her presence, but instead set about the business of taking off his tie tack and cuff links, hanging up his tie, perhaps even menacingly removing his belt. All the while his beautiful sub waited patiently with her eyes cast down, but with ever increasing anticipation, perhaps even apprehension, of what her master might have in store for her.
The patient service of a submissive, awaiting whatever might suit her master is an incredibly powerful statement of devotion. She knows not what his mood might be when he comes home. Will he be needy and want to take her immediately? Will he feel playful and want to be teasing and taunting with her pleasure? Will he feel frustrated or emasculated by work and want to exert control, perhaps ordering her to her knees to service him promptly with her mouth? Or will he be dark and brooding and want to seek release of his tension through a more physical session?
She knows not what is in store for her and yet with the utmost of grace, beauty and devotion, she sits, largely naked, legs spread, and presents herself as ordered in complete acceptance of whatever would please her master in that moment.
So when her master eventually stops what he is doing and turns to her, there is no doubt that her heart is racing as she tries to control her breathing, ragged with anticipation and perhaps a tinge of fear or at least uncertainty of the unknown. As he stands before her, his first touch will set the tone for all that is to follow. And she will go wherever his touch takes her. Still she waits patiently.
How will he touch her? Will he grasp her by the throat and force her back? Will he grab her hair and pull her mouth toward him? Will he grasp the back of her neck and thrust her to the floor on all fours for punishment or the taking? As she sits and strains to maintain her outward composure in the face of churning anticipation she closes her eyes in acceptance of whatever is to come next.
When his first touch finally comes it is gentle. Nurturing. Cradling. She sinks into her master’s hand and is immediately transported from a place of anticipation and perhaps trepidation to a place of serenity and peace. A place where she is enveloped in the warm glow of her master’s dominance and a sense of care-free submission and security. By his hand she has been taught, corrected and even punished. But in his hand she is also guided, molded, nurtured, embraced and treasured. Even loved. His hands do so many wondrous things to her and for her. His touch can say so much. And she sinks into every one of his touches with equal abandon and satisfaction whether it is tender or torturous, pleasing or painful.
His touch. Always his touch. It transports her to her place of submission and service every time, in every way. Such is the power of the D/s bond. And this night it will be tender and loving with the same depth of emotion and intensity as other nights when it is harsh and demanding. But always…always…his touch takes her there.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2012
Image © EGO Magazine Models: Evgeniya Diordiychuk (Katie Fey) and Denis Nikiforov
No matter how hard you try and how vivid your imagination, nothing can compare to the touch of your Dom. You can paddle yourself, masturbate, and choke yourself until you are blue in the face but it will never be the same.
Because without your Dom, you still have control and therefor lack the core ingredient of submission complete and utter voluntary surrender of control to another. You are still you willful, self-reliant, in charge.
Sure, there is nothing wrong with fantasizing and self-pleasure. We all do it. Any port in a storm, I say. But there is nothing you can do to yourself or for yourself that can possibly give the reward of your Dom’s gaze, your Dom’s words, and your Dom’s touch. Only he can take you not only to those special places of physical pleasure but also to the dark recesses of your mind where the “Wild Things” are. The places that no one else ever sees or even knows about. The thoughts, desires and cravings that you would never share with anyone else…even your closest girlfriend.
These are the places that your Dom not only knows about, but makes his home and romps in freely. With your permission and complicity you become his playground. And play he does sometimes with the joy and enthusiasm of a child and at others with the intensity and fearsomeness of a warrior. But at all times you are his. By your choice. Fulfilling your own desires as you simultaneously fulfill his.
You never asked for it. You do not want it. Not here. Not in this way. Save it for the rest of life. Here, you are his. And when he is not with you, it is simply not the same. Hollow. Empty. Unsatisfied. Left craving, just a little more.
So imagine and fantasize all you wish. But when you are through you will still need your other half the dark dominant half to your submissive lightness of being.
Imagination is a beautiful and powerful resource. Without it we would not have the wild creativity that brings us such joy in D/s. But imagination can only take us so far. At some point, we must move beyond the imaginary and experience the awesome intensity of the D/s dance first hand to truly find ourselves.
Find him. Treasure him. Respect him. And above all, enjoy him. Bring your imaginings, merge them with his, and together create your own D/s dance filled with lust and joy.
Just imagine the possibilities.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2012
Image © TheRedChair.net Model: Sybill Hawthorne
Dance For Me
Women, in my experience, love to dance. Their minds and bodies seem to have been taylor made for fluid motion and agility. But while nearly every woman I have met desires to express themselves through movement, many are insufficiently comfortable with themselves or their bodies to dance freely before another. A bit like singing in the shower, many do it in private but the moment there is an audience they clam up and shut down.
I love to draw out the inner dancer in my submissive. It is often said that being a successful Dom is not about forcing a submissive do things they don’t want to do but rather, enticing them to do things they secretly always wanted to do but never thought they could or would. Dancing is emblematic of everything else in a D/s relationship. If a Dom can draw out the inner dancer, then he can also draw out other wonderful sensual traits of a sub.
Hidden deep amid the dark recesses of many inner dancers is also a common fantasy of being a stripper, a geisha, a Mata Hari, a belly dancer, a courtesan, or the like. It is the forbidden and frightening fruit that many women would love to taste but would or should never experience in their real lives. This is the woman I want to draw out in a D/s relationship. She is there already, buried deep under mountains of social conditioning, insecurities, and life experiences. My job, no my personal goal, is to find that inner dancer, breathe life into her, take her by the hand and convince her that I am a safe, welcoming space for her deepest desires.
Some might say this is manipulation. Perhaps so in the wrong hands. I view it as building a level of trust, security and desire sufficient to allow all those deeply buried secret inner desires to come to life. Dancing is a wonderful place to start.
With music in the background, I love to dance with my submissive, gently and tenderly. Bodies swaying. Hips undulating. Slowly I draw back to arms length still holding her hands and outwardly appreciate the sensuality of her movement with clear signs of my approval and gratitude. As she grows more confident under my gaze, I may release her hands, fingertips dragging across finger tips, allowing space between us as I continue my appreciative gaze. Eventually, I may lean against the wall or even take a seat subtly encouraging her to keep dancing.
Now she genuinely has an audience. She will feel awkward and naked even when she is fully clothed. But my approval, obvious desire for her, and verbal accolades serve to encourage her. I tell her how amazing she looks and how sexy and sensual her movement is to me. How it makes me long for her. As her comfort and confidence grows and the intensity of my approving gaze and complimentary remarks rises I may eventually say, “Dance for Me.”
Few women in my experience can resist the urge. The desire is there. They just need to feel safe and comfortable and not judged. As she undulates and moves with greater intensity, I may eventually urge her to, “Show Me.” Here there will be no question what I desire and how much I desire it. And by now, she does too. Here, in this safe, warm, sensual space between us a new life is born. An inner dancer emerges and becomes the exotic dancer, the stripper, the courtesan, the Mata Hari. That inner woman who has always been there is unlocked and set free, never to be locked away again. Not so long as she is with me.
Dance for me.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2012
Image © Max Italy Magazine, March 2011 Model: Rosie Huntington Whitely
One of the great joys I experience as a Dom is the ability to control the tempo and intensity with which my submissive’s imagination travels and at what point her anticipation overwhelms her, sending her spiraling into a mental and emotional orgasm long before the physical ones ever manifests themselves.
Mental foreplay long precedes the physical as our respective roles are established and positions cemented. This may involve low soft talk and the subtle giving of direction in both sexual and non-sexual contexts. One of my favorite methods is to quietly ask provoking and embarrassing questions or give soft subtle commands that elicit responses clearly delineating our positions my dominance, your submission.
In a restaurant for example, I may ask the server if he thinks you look hot in your new evening dress. Naturally he will agree to which I may “suggest” that you stand up and show it to him, commending you to turn around and let him see the back while I comment on how it makes your ass look completely irresistible. Naturally, ever the gentleman, I would then thank you and hold your chair as your return to your seat.
I may ask you softly if you are wearing panties under your dress (you should know better) and if so suggest that you excuse yourself to the ladies room to remove them. Naturally I will insist that you hand them to me (over the table) when you return to your seat making sure that others can see the transaction. In a low husky voice I may ask if it worries you that you might leave a spot on your new dress since you will be soaked knowing that I intend to blindfold you when we return to the room and slowly tease you into a frenzy, depriving you of your orgasms for hours as I turn your entire body into my playground. I may ask if it worries you that you that I may command you to please yourself, right here in the restaurant, under the table while I watch the expressions on your face. I may tell you that if you fail to reach an orgasm right here at the table, I will be forced to take you over my lap and alternately spank and finger you relentlessly to painful orgasm after painful orgasm back in the room.
Then, having set your mind reeling with a combination of dread and anticipation, I may do none of it at all suggesting only that you finish your dinner, leaving you wondering what might be coming next and when.
By now, if you are not wet and mentally squirming with anticipation, I have sorely misjudged you. But then, I know you well…I know how to press your buttons.
Back in the room, you are all aflame and desirous and eager to be taken. But not so fast. First, the blindfold. I have you present yourself to me on the bed, head down, ass up. I move around the room making small noises, leaving you to wonder what is going to happen next, when, where, and how. Now is the time when I can truly set your mind whirling in spasms of anticipation. I may brush back a whisp of hair from your face, the smallest touch magnified to outrageous intensity in your heightened state of sight-deprived arousal and awareness. I may trace a fingertip down your spine to your tail bone, leaving a trail of fire and cold shivers in its wake. I may slowly lift the hem of your dress, dragging the fabric tantilyzingly over your bare ass until it rests upon your back, leaving you exposed to my sight and whim. I may make you wait like that for a long, long time as I just sit back taking in the glorious submissive sight of you.
But when the first touch comes. No matter where it is or what its intensity. You melt. All of the pent up anticipation releases like a raging river from a bursting dam. Whatever tiny shards of self-will that might have remained abandon you. You are mine. Given. Taken. Owned.
This is the nature of the mental foreplay of which I speak and so enjoy as your Dom. This absolute control without the need for restraint. You submit utterly and completely to my will and in so doing grant me absolute power over your heart and mind long before I ever touch your body.
This is the essence of D/s. This is the essence of us.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2012
Image © joseph sirakas
Submission as a Craft
Often I write of Dominance as being a craft to be honed a manner of relating that melds natural leadership tendencies with self-control, assertiveness, desire, attentiveness, empathy, compassion, good listening skills, powers of observation, and a highly developed sense of nurturance and protectiveness. To be truly effective at Dominance takes considerable investment of time and mental energy, all the while maintaining a calm exterior that makes deeds and words appear effortless and natural, even when they perhaps are not. Dominance is a highly active state of being in which one must be fully engaged at all times in order to be effective. It is a demanding, and at times all-consuming, craft.
Submission appears to be the opposite of Dominance in that it looks to the casual observer to be a passive activity simply taking orders or direction from a Dominant and carrying them out successfully to completion and to the liking of the Dominant. This is a significant misperception that I believe leads many of the wrong people into exploring D/s both as submissives and Dominants. Dominance is far more than high handedly giving orders and submission is far more than obediently taking them. I wish more people understood that. Serving as a submissive is every bit as mentally engaging and at times taxing as the role of Dominant, and it takes hard work and considerable thought and effort to be good at it. Submission is anything but a passive activity. While it is true that Dominants and submissives are equal opposites in many respects, as it relates to the effort necessary to hone their respective crafts, they are more akin to opposite sides of the same coin two different faces of the same effort. Both have to work equally hard for there to be real magic in the relationship.
In the world of D/s, there are submissives who stand out in the crowd and are prized by Dominants and admired by other submissives. There is something special about them, something that sets them apart from others that is readily apparent to anyone who has been around for even a relatively short time. What stands out most is not looks, clothing, age or body type. It is in their character, their bearing, how they carry themselves and I don’t mean simply good posture, positioning, and quickness to respond to direction. What captures many Dominant’s attention and imagination is a combination of strength of character and intelligence lovingly melded with devotion and submission. This is not merely evident in carrying out orders, but anticipating needs. It is not just striving to please by doing what one is told in the manner instructed, but rather, putting hard work into one’s self to be more pleasing in every possible way. That can take the form of knowledge, education, professional development, artistic and domestic skills, as well as appearance, dress, health, physical fitness and being a student of the art of submission and service. And there are many others.
Standout submissives put as much care and effort into being their very best possible selves at the same time they strive to be their very best and most devoted submissive to their Master. From this comes an air of confidence and competence that makes for a most prized and worthy submissive and sets them apart from the dishrag or lapdog image so many have of submission. It does not take a Dominant to bring a person with low self-esteem, confidence, or sense of purpose to bear. Any domineering boor can do that. The prize for a Dominant is in the utter devotion and service of one who has no need to do so, but would have it no other way. That is earned by a Dominant. That can only be given by a submissive. That IS the prize that is submission. But a submissive cannot gift something to a Dominant that they do not have. Remember that.
As part of their craft, Dominants strive to find the “secret sauce” that draws a submissive out of an otherwise strong and potentially willful person and inspires them to ever greater depths of submission and devotion. There is no one recipe. Indeed it is more of a rich bouillabaisse, ratatouille or gumbo, making best use of the ingredients at hand. The Dominant’s choice of recipe is solely dependent upon the strengths, weaknesses, biases and life history of the submissive and must be flexible and adaptable as more ingredients become apparent and available over time.
So too, the submissive plays an active role in drawing out and inspiring the Dominant in constructive and mutually beneficial ways. A person may be naturally dominant, but an accomplished and hard working submissive can themselves craft and mould that natural dominance into something they truly desire to be the recipient of. A standout submissive plays a very significant role in bringing forth the most desired traits and behaviors of their Dominant. This is very much a two-way street. How this is accomplished by the submissive to greatest effect will differ based upon the personality, experience, and biases of the Dominant. At the end of the day we are all people with our differing and mixed up pasts on which we must build a present and future. Both Dominants and submissives must consciously make best use of one another’s strengths and weaknesses to achieve the desired mutual outcomes.
One of the most common (and perhaps overused and misunderstood) strategies I see new submissives use to draw out dominance is brattiness. This form of not so subtle taunting or defiance often elicits an immediate response from a Dominant and as such tends to be relied upon too heavily for its immediate cause and effect results. To be sure, it is one tool in the toolbox of a submissive. But brattiness is a shallow tactic, and not one with lasting effect or upon which a trusting and enduring bond can be built. Some Dominants like the brat sub and feed on the constant friction and heat between Dom and sub that brattiness can bring about. It gives them ample excuse to respond or even retaliate. If this is your thing, then great. It can certainly be a lot of fun now and then and brings a little spice to play time to be sure. But as a strategy for long-term development and nurturing of a deeply emotional D/s bond I personally find it lacking. Sorely lacking.
Another oft employed strategy I see in new or exploring submissives is the needy damsel in distress. By playing to the protective and nurturing nature of a Dominant the submissive draws them into their world by way of drama, neediness, and perceived helplessness. Again, this works to a degree and for a while, but is more likely to breed a codependent relationship than a healthy and loving D/s bond simply by virtue of the fact that it is not based on a coming together of equals. It places the submissive in the inferior position from the start and there they shall forever remain. This is not submission but rather dependence. Remember that submission is an act of giving one’s strength and will to another. If you don’t have either, you have little to give.
Another occasionally distressing tactic is the submissive who physically or emotionally throws themselves at the feet of anyone claiming to be a Dominant. This over eagerness points not to submission but rather a looseness of sorts, even desperation. Not so subtly it speaks to a potential underlying lack of self esteem. The message received by the Dominant is “if you will throw yourself at my feet without even knowing me, you will likely do the same for any and every other schmuck who comes along.” This is not universally true so I say all this with some caution and trepidation. But as a rule, having someone who knows nothing about you throw themselves at your feet (outside of play parties or the like where such rules and decorum might be the order of the day) says far more negative things about the submissive than it does in the way of complimenting the Dominant. Nothing has been done to earn it. I will admit that many men would dream of having a woman proverbially throw themselves at their feet begging to be taken. Its every boys’ fantasy I suppose. The fact of the matter is that most Dominants I know are not “boys” and are actually rather put off by such actions (unless it is received from their own submissive). Too much of a good thing, too soon, from the wrong source can be bad.
While I have couched all of the aforementioned approaches in the negative, they are each useful and acceptable strategies by a submissive in moderation and I think most submissives can identify at least a portion of themselves with elements of each. The train only goes completely off the rails when a submissive becomes too reliant upon one or more of them as a basis for their “submission.”
The craft of submission as I like to think of it, just like the craft of Dominance, is an effort of playing to our strengths and bolstering our weaknesses to best effect with another. It is a fine line walked by Dominants and submissives between adaptation and manipulation. The former is good, the latter destructive. The craft ultimately is best founded in a firm understanding of self. When we know our own strengths and weaknesses, and strive to improve ourselves, we have the firm bedrock on which to build a relationship with another person. This is as true in D/s as any other relationship in life. The better we are as people, the more we have to offer someone else.
Some of the hallmarks of the craftsmen and craftswomen of submission are grace, maturity, emotional stability, intelligence, self-awareness, compassion, empathy, sensuality, and aesthetic sense to name but a few. Note that not one of these traits speaks to the notion of lapdog or doormat. Quite the opposite in fact. As you look around Tumblr certain submissives’ blogs rise immediately to the top for their display of all of these traits and more. These submissives present themselves as an idea or an ideal to be attained, rather than solely as a symbol of sex and sexuality. They describe and display themselves and the richness of their character and personality first and foremost, and package that in a sensual presentation of their submissive mind set and desires. That sort of presentation of self on a blog is precisely the bearing and character I see and seek in a standout submissive in real life. It is a person whose submission is utterly desirable and to be prized. A work of art to be held, guided and nurtured as sensuous and colorful as the richest oil painting, as lyrical and melodious as a symphony, as solid and grounded as a marble statue.
While sexuality is an oft inherent part of most D/s relationships, it is not the basis of them. Submission is an emotional and mental state first and foremost. Sex and sexuality is but a particularly vulnerable manifestation of that emotional state of being and ultimately of the trust between Dominant and submissive.
So perhaps the craft of submission is the never ending processes of cultivating more of oneself to give, and learning to give more. In cultivating more to give, a submissive works consciously on themselves their self-awareness, abilities and talents. In learning to give more, the submissive strives to learn their Dominant and give everything they have to them how best to please and be pleasing, and in so doing, draw the most desirable traits of their Dominant out for their mutual benefit and pleasure. When both the Dominant and submissive work on themselves as craftsmen and craftswomen for the benefit of themselves and each other in equal measure, a mature and truly beautiful D/s relationship is bound to be the result.
Submission is an art, and like any art form it requires a craftsman or woman to create, perfect and issue forth. But unlike so many other crafts where something external is created, ultimately the work of art in this instance is you.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2014
Image © Mercuro B Cotto
If i told you that i wanted you - what would you do? Would you promise me the stars and sun and moon as dreamers often do?
i would not take them, for i don’t want to love that way…
If i told you that i wanted you - what would you do? Would you lavish me with trinkets and all the pretty things? Trading your bauble for heart and hand?
i would not take it, for i don’t want to love that way…
If i told you that i wanted you - what would you do? Would you cover me like darkness, whispering words of secret sins? Breaking me apart and creating something new?
i would take You, for i want to love that way…
Original photo credit unknown
Words by submissiveinclination
What follows is a thought provoking piece on one person’s path to finding balance between their natural tendencies and submissive needs. Many of us, Dominants and submissives, have traits of both inherently built into our psyches to one degree or another, as well as elements of both traditional masculine and feminine emotional states. To be successful as a Dominant or a submissive requires the right balance of all of these. Most female submissives are not 100% feminine and submissive. They posses masculine and dominant traits as well. Indeed many desiring to be submissive struggle against a lifetime of needing to exhibit dominant and masculine energies to survive and thrive in the real world. So too, a successful male Dominant must have a clear line of sight to their more feminine emotional qualities such as nurturing, protecting, empathy, etc. and know how and when to exercise them. They must also know when to yield and drop or temper their dominant side. Something that is not always easy or even acceptable for a male in society.
To be really good at being a Dom or sub challenges many of us to learn to be different than we are in daily life. Perhaps adopting the relationship roles of Dominant or submissive is a coming to oneself for many of us who normally feel out of place in the “real world” but feel comfortable and authentic when we assume our D/s places. For many this is a transition and a learning process. And as with all things requiring change and growth, it is easy to fall back into long-established patterns of behavior and reacting.
In my case, I can at times fall back to being overly nurturing and insufficiently Dominant, my Muse can fall back into familiar patterns of bargaining and domineering inherent in her daily life thus far. Yet when we are together we fall into what feels like our natural selves as Dominant and submissive, in defiance of who we have historically been out in the “real” world.
The author below is on a significant journey of reflection and self-discovery that is admirable and in some respects enviable. Not many of us are as self-aware as this, let alone willing to put ourselves out there to the world. For those struggling to find their place in D/s or trying to understand why they feel the way they do about Dominance or submission, I recommend spending some time looking inwardly as this blogger is endeavoring to do.
Reflections and Thoughts from an Abstract S/submissive
Personal growth is a big part of who I am, I value the moments when self reflection leads to the understanding of myself, which in turn, helps me gain insight in becoming a better me. Regardless of whether one is male, female, Dominant or submissive, everyone possesses some combination of both feminine and masculine characteristics, or energy. It has nothing to do with your sexual preference, your physical appearance, or preferred wardrobe. They are the characteristics of our inner self that make up who we are and how we portray ourselves to those around us, and how we interact with the world.
I am a strong, in control, self confident, sometimes over the top, always planning, always thinking, risk taking, self reliant, quick with a clever comeback, talkative, passionate in my beliefs, orderly, often delegating, submissive female. *deep breath* Trust me, it’s exhausting!! Those would be my masculine traits. At the same time, I have the other side of me that is serving, gentle, playful, loving, attentive, sensitive, understanding, compassionate and almost giving to a fault. These would be considered my feminine traits and what makes up who I am in my core. Essentially, I am an extremely submissive female, with a very high masculine energy. Yes, I am a girlie girl, enjoy time with my girlfriends, wear cute clothes, have my nails painted pink, can walk in heels, and obsessed about maintaining my physical self. Any sight of a grey hair has me in panic mode, running to the nearest salon. As stated, it has nothing to do with ones physical appearance, just to make that clear.
Again, whether you are a dominant or submissive, male or female…. these masculine and feminine energies exist in all of us, just at different levels. A strong dominate male should not only posses strong masculine traits, but also have some feminine traits, as well ie sensitivity, loving, caring, compassionate and so on.These traits are required regardless of how alpha you are. With that being said, a submissive should also posses masculine traits which are essential in day to day life, i.e. succeeding in business, running a household, or confronting the jackass that just cut you off on I-95 (okay, maybe not that.) Seriously though, the combination of both masculine and feminine energy make up all of us, and who we are as people. Knowing how to gauge those characteristics and when to use them, is the tricky part… at least for me.
Keep in mind, no one can learn to be submissive, they just are, but they can improve on it… The same goes for being Dominant. One just is. However, all of us can work toward mastering at becoming better selves.This submissive is learning under supervision of her therapist / life coach to soften the sometimes overwhelming way she portrays herself, so to allow allow her feminine energy to emerge. Especially if she is one who has had to keep her submissive core buried for a lifetime.
Here are some exercises asked of me to work on four times daily. First and foremost, and not surprising he stressed this part from me. Don’t speak. If I must speak, I can only speak of my needs and my feelings. Learn to shut my mind off. No thinking, planning, no pushing, controlling or dominating. I must work on feeling my body sensations and my breathing and to be in my senses see, smell, touch, taste, hear. In order to bring out my inner feminine take bubble baths, yoga, involve myself in my art, cry, laugh, be messy, emotional, wild, unpredictable, and impractical. Gift those around me with my inner feminine radiance, which is strong, but has been contained due to a lifetime of me having no other choice but to steer the ship.
Perhaps this will help some of you. Gained insight and knowledge should be shared, especially when it may be influential to those in helping them to lead the most fulfilling life they can. It’s what we all want, and anyone that says that there isn’t room for self improvement, certainly has a lot to learn. My very best to all of you in your quest to become a better you. In doing so, I can assure you that you will be a better part of something more profound. That deep O/oneness with another that we all seek. xo’
Dominance as a Craft
Dominance to my way of thinking is not so much an activity to engage in as a craft to be honed. It is something that I study intently, perhaps more so than any other vocation or avocation over the course of my life. I read about Dominance, I observe other Dominants, I practice Dominance, and above all I study the causes and effects of my own actions intently and with great interest, always with an eye toward perfecting my craft. Ultimately to me, part of the beauty and intrigue in Dominance is that perfection is in fact an unattainable goal and therefor just out of reach. It leaves me something always to strive for.
Perfection in any craft is elusive because there is always room for improvement, innovation, and creativity. But in the art of Dominance the variables include among other things two imperfect human beings, a Dominant and a submissive, each with their own biases, fears, limitations, and even psychoses. We are all flawed individuals striving for something grander in our relationships. Dominants and submissives almost universally seek something more fulfilling, more exciting, more enriching in their relationships with one another. Almost like an addiction, once the thrill and intimacy of D/s has been tasted, a thousand more encounters is never enough. So we delve ever deeper, seeking the thrill of that first emotional and physical high, crafting ourselves and each other along the way into something different, something more.
A submissive in the hands of a caring and competent Dominant is a work of art that is never fully complete. A submissive is a canvas on which a Dominant paints the image of their desires, not just for themselves but for their submissive as well. A Dominant creates a work of art that pleases him, yet in that must also ensure that their submissive is pleased and satisfied by the outcome as well. But that canvas is far from blank when received. There are already colors and brush strokes that have been applied by others and by life, and perhaps even some tears and scars in the canvas itself. A Dominant is never afforded a truly clean slate on which to work, and in that perhaps lies the greatest challenge of the craft. Rather than creating something solely in the image of their desires, the job of a Dominant is to capitalize on the colors already there, navigate the thin spots and tears in the canvas, and use them all to greatest benefit in creating their own work of art a confident, devoted and self-satisfied submissive.
Ultimately the craft of Dominance is not to create something that we as a Dominant feel is beautiful, we have felt that way all along about our submissive. The goal is to create something that our submissive believes is beautiful. When a submissive can look in the mirror, literally and figuratively, and see themselves as worthy, beautiful, accomplished, successful and desired, then we as Dominants have achieved something great with our craft. The genuine submissive will observe the transformation in themselves and perhaps heap far more credit for the changes on their Dominant than is even warranted or deserved. The more a submissive comes to like who they are and who they are becoming, the more devoted to their Master they become, for they see a linkage between the efforts of the Dominant and the outcome of their personal success and/or satisfaction.
This is the difference between the motivations of Dominance versus domineering. A domineering individual seeks to keep their “partner” down, under their proverbial thumb of control, often out of a fear of being rejected or upstaged. It is negative motivation leading to even more negative outcomes. A Dominant on the other hand seeks to create a work of art from their submissive, striving to elevate them in substance and self-esteem. Far from keeping them down under a controlling thumb, the Dominant strives to give a submissive the tools to be free, the reward being that the submissive, even with the tools of freedom and achievement in hand, chooses to stay in complete devotion.
That, my friends, is the work of art achieved by the craft of Dominance. The Dominant helps teach the submissive to fly, sets them free, and in the best of all possible outcomes, the submissive returns to their Dominant in utter devotion over and over and over again.
The closest parallel I can think of is observable in the world of falconry where the falconer seeks not only to train and motivate a wild bird of prey to do best what it already does well, but also to do it under the terms and desires of the falconer. The falconer provides ever greater and more challenging opportunities to hunt, setting the bird free always in hopes that it will choose to come back for food, shelter, acceptance and validation. Over time a relationship evolves between falcon and falconer, even a mutual dependence. For the falconer, the rush is not only in the launching, but in the recovery that moment when he sees this beautiful, wild, and untamable creature turn back in flight with the intent of coming home to roost. That instant when the glorious bird of prey extends its talons, sweeps its wings full spread, and instead of attacking comes to rest gently on a gloved fist. That is the moment of addictive joy which keeps a falconer engaged in their craft for a lifetime.
So it is with a Dominant and their submissive. A Dominant seeks out the strengths of their submissive and strives to foster and enhance them. At the same time a Dominant seeks out the weaknesses and fears and works to smooth them over, bridge them, and move on. If we do these things well, we grow our very own work of art who, over time, becomes more independent and self-assured. And as that independence grows so too does the thrill when that confident and capable being come back of their own free will to kneel before us in devoted submission. Like the hawk or falcon landing on a gloved hand, the kneeling submissive has made a conscious choice that home is at the feet of their Dominant.
The feeling of pride, humility and joy I experience in that instant of recognition and acknowledgment by my submissive that I am Master by her own choice and free will, is the closest embodiment of perfection that I know in this craft we call Dominance. It is that which I strive for more of every day.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Image © Larry Hoth - Larry Hoth Photography
Dominant Traits - Motivation
There is little doubt that I as a Dominant can use the power that has been vested in me by my submissive to impel her to do all sorts of things. I have been given license to use her body, attract her heart, shape her thinking and generally avail myself of her devotion and loyalty as I see fit. She understands that I will use that awesome power wisely and for our mutual benefit because I have proven to her time and time again that I will…without fail. She trusts that I have her best interests at heart and will respect her person and limits even when satisfying my own basest desires.
Most bystanders view Dominance and submission through the lens of the kink and sex that such a relationship can and often does entail and see these activities as the end all and be all of the relationship. There is no doubt that kinky sex, bondage, impact play, and all the many manifestations of BDSM are a fun and rewarding part of a trusting D/s relationship whether or not it is romantically linked. Let me say that again…BDSM between consenting and knowledgeable partners is fun. Really FUN! My Muse and I have an incredibly good time in the kink department when we are together. But the fact of the matter is that due to time and distance we are only together in intermittant but intense bursts. If our D/s relationship were predicated solely on kinky play and sexual gratification there would be little to carry us consistently through our forced prolonged periods of absence and abstinance.
Thankfully there is an element of Dominance and submission that goes beyond the obvious loyalty, devotion, sex, and BDSM play. The role of Dominant and submissive can be adopted into daily life in ways that are very subtle but perhaps the most powerful and rewarding of all. I have spoken recently of the role a Dominant can play in coaching and mentoring a submissive and there is no question that this occurs naturally on the basic BDSM level. But it can also play a pivotal role in the daily lives of a D/s couple even if they are not co-located or living a 24/7 D/s relationship.
As I have often written, a Dominant should posses far more than a strong sex drive, powerful presence and an interest in kink. A Dominant in the truest sense of the word is someone who exercises leadership over people who follow them, not because they are made to but because they want to. A Dominant does not dominate the weak. In fact, a Dominant would never do so their protective and nurturing instincts are far too strong for that. A Dominant will shelter the weak, and lead the strong. And the Dominant recognizes that sometimes the strong feel weak and also require shelter and protection. That is to me the essence of a true Dominant.
My Muse is small but mighty. She is strong of body, mind and will. She is a good person, a good parent, a good friend, a caring lover, and a devoted submissive. But my Muse has not always had the opportunities she hoped for in life and sometimes feels herself less than able to seek new direction, tackle new challenges, and perhaps feels somewhat trapped by present life circumstances. She also can become quite anxious when confronting change or the unknown.
Perhaps my most important and rewarding role as Master to my Muse has been and continues to be that of shining a light on the strengths I see in her, continually holding a mirror up for her to see herself as I do as a strong, capable, energetic and intelligent woman who, regardless of circumstance, has capabilities far beyond those she is presently exercising and the ability to seek out and seize new opportunities for personal growth and life satisfaction. Sounds like a tall order, and it is. This is not a task one undertakes lightly or briefly just to get laid. This is long-term work that takes considerable time, patience and dedication on the part of a Dominant.
In the case of my Muse, I began our relationship by working to overcome physical and emotional barriers to intimacy for both of us. These efforts, conducted over a period of many months, opened the door to a deep emotional connection between my Muse and me that later transcended into a level of comfort with our bodies and desires in a physical relationship unlike any we had experienced before. These are not superficial barriers to a relationship. They were real, at times seemingly impenetrable, and occasionally fraught with land mines. Having built a solid trusting relationship as friends, lovers, Dominant and submissive, the harder and longer-term work of actually changing the course of a life could begin.
One of the attractions of a Dominant is that they be someone that others either want to be with, be like, or both. A Dominant engenders respect and perhaps even a little envy. They serve not only as leader but also as role model. They have something in their person and in life that others want to be associated with. There can even be a little, “when I grow up I want to be like that.” A Dominant leads not only by command but by example. This is where the role of mentor and coach comes into play and in the case of my Muse and me, is part of our relationship that carries us through the long periods apart. I draw on my life experience and knowledge to help her see not only her strengths but how to capitalize on them. I also help give her the belief in herself, in her future, and the courage to pursue it. But like any submissive, the hard work falls on her. Nothing I do, nothing I say, no direction I can set, has any meaning whatsoever unless she adopts the desires and beliefs for herself and sets out to achieve the goals on her own.
I am very proud to say that my Muse is taking a step forward in life by adding to her already important roles of mother and head of household to also work toward growing herself. She is adding to an already busy and full life by going back to school to pursue a college degree, something she thought was either unattainable or potentially postponed until her children were grown. She attributes some of the motivation and confidence to her Master and yet I know that she has done it all on her own. I just pointed out her strengths, encouraged her direction, coached on a few practical matters, exercised persistence and patience and eventually away she went. My Muse, as always, does all the hard work. I just get to sit back and enjoy the rewards of watching her grow true in life, kink, submission, and love.
While I have had the privilege to shape and mold my Muse in many ways that please both of us, none has been or continues to be more rewarding than the trust and devotion that has allowed me to go beyond romance and kink to actually work to help redirect and shape a life. The power we are given as Dominants can be used wisely or destructively. We can and do please ourselves in the process and there is great fun in that to be sure. But the deepest reward of Dominance for me is in being able to take the raw materials that are my submissive and help her to become not only the work of art that I desire, but also the pillar of confidence and success that she most desires.
Ultimately, Dominance is about motivating people to do what they already desire to do anyway, though they often don’t know it yet, or if they do, they may not believe that they are capable of success. Our job as Dominants is to break down these barriers, build bridges of motivation toward action, and show the path forward. A submissive does the rest, and for that I am most grateful.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Image © nenablue.com
Dominant Traits - Fear of Failure?
Fear of being inadequate to lead a submissive in the manner they deserve sounds downright paralyzing to me as this follower describes it. I don’t personally possess that fear of failure though I share the same concern for success, if that makes any sense. I always want what is best for my Muse and yet I am human and have self-centered wants and desires too. My concerns are not fear of inadequacy but rather fear of acting out of self-centered motivation, not in the best interest of my Muse. There is a definite difference. I cannot think of a time where I failed to act when I needed to, but did I always act out of selflessness and love? I continually question my motives to determine their purity.
I have every confidence in my abilities as a man, a Dominant, and a mentor, but perhaps just as importantly, I posses a well-understood awareness of my limitations. I do not practice Dominance beyond the limits of my ability…but I practice Dominance very confidently within them.
Where I get concerned and introspective is when I am guiding the life of my Muse in very deep and profound ways, leading her to important life decisions from which there can be no turning back. Here I admit not to fear and inaction, but to a genuine concern and tendency to pause. I always want to be sure that I am truly guiding from a place of knowledge and love rather than manipulating from a place of self-interest and desire. These are the times when I have to check my motives and really think about what it is I am doing and saying. Am I guiding for her best interest or manipulating for my personal gain? It sounds simple and obvious but the lines, I assure you, are far more blurry than one might imagine.
When a submissive truly puts their life and heart into the hands of a Dominant, it is indeed an awesome and perhaps even fearsome responsibility. And I do mean responsibility a Dominant can literally hold that person in their hands and help shape them into something really quite exquisite or unwittingly destroy them. That is power. That is the essence of the power exchange. Its not simply about floggings, orgasms, or tying someone up. Those are mere metaphors and symbols for something far deeper. There is every reason to be concerned about making a mistake…but allowing oneself to be paralyzed to inaction based upon the fear of making mistakes is to achieve nothing. We all make mistakes…I have made them, large and small, both physical and emotional with my Muse. Being dominant is not synonymous with being omnipotent. A Dominant is a leader, not a God. A Dominant will make mistakes.
The biggest mistake I see of all by many Dominants is a failure to admit mistakes, to being fallible, human, something other than Godlike. Being a Dominant means being a leader. Leaders take measured risks to achieve greater rewards. Sometimes they fuck up along the way. Leaders will dust themselves off and those around them and lead them further into battle. If people believe that their leader is honest and genuinely has their best interests at heart, they will follow that leader to the ends of the earth. So it is with Dominance. We make mistakes, we admit them, we learn from them, we apologize, we make amends, we move on deeper into the fray.
Concern for the welfare of a submissive is admirable and crucial to anyone’s success as a Dominant. However, fear of failure is simply paralyzing and frankly not very Dom-like.
One could debate endlessly whether Dominants are born or grown. I personally think it is a little of both. Leaders often emerge in school age children pretty early on. Its not so much what they know as how they carry themselves and build trust bonds. If we are lucky, this tendency toward leadership carries forward throughout life. However, simply being a leader does not equate to dominance either. There is something more that seemingly must be acquired lessons that only some experience and travel along the path of life seem to impart.
I know of some very capable and impressive young people who are leaders in their own right, but I know very few genuine young Dominants. There is a wisdom that accompanies most Dominants that only comes with not only years, but from actively observing and learning the lessons that life offers. Not just from their own mistakes and successes but from those of others as well. None of us shall ever live long enough to make all the mistakes necessary to gain wisdom on our own. We must observe the paths of others emulate their successes and avoid their failures. This is to me the root of wisdom. What we do with those lessons for ourselves, and how we impart them to others, is perhaps the root of Dominance.
So, from all this I offer that a genuine concern for being the best one can possibly be as a Dominant for the benefit of a submissive is a healthy and practical line of thinking. However, fear of inadequacy or failure is paralyzing and frankly does not strike me as carrying some of the core principles and traits of a dominant person. Confidence (not cockiness) is an absolute necessity in a Dominant. People do not follow someone who is timid and unsure. Similarly, they do not follow someone who is all of that but tries to cover it up with bluster and bravado. A submissive can see through that in very short order…at least I hope they can for their sake. Leadership requires honest yet humble confidence. Fear of failure, while honest, is not confident.
To anyone contemplating a relationship based on Dominance and submission, I would encourage some honest introspection about where you fall along the continuum between Dominance and submission or if you are even on that continuum at all. Ask yourself honestly about your own motives for wanting to be a Dominant and assess your abilities and weaknesses. Desire alone to be Dominant will not make you one. A desire to be a leader will not make you one. How do people react to you in life? Do they tend to follow you, ignore you, or avoid you? Do people gravitate to you for advice, or do they tend to go elsewhere? Do you rise to the top in a group or move to the back row? This is a good opportunity for an in-depth personal inventory and to make some decisions about who you really are versus who you might want to be. Doing so will help point out what needs to be accomplished to get there.
I for one am not necessarily what many might consider to be a born leader. My path through school and my early career did not lead anyone to believe that I was cut from leadership cloth. However, today both in my personal and professional life I am viewed as a leader in the vanilla world and in my D/s relationship. From that I infer that perhaps Dominance can be learned. The wisdom gained by actively living life, absorbing its lessons, and applying them judiciously and empathically can in fact grow a Dominant. Having strong mentors also helps. For better or for worse, today people do follow me. But to be worthy of being followed takes an honest assessment of the skills one has, and perhaps more importantly, the skills one lacks, along with a genuine desire and effort to acquire and master those missing skills. Such a self-awareness combined with hard work and confidence in one’s ability can in fact grow a Dominant. I believe that. I am living proof of that.
Am I afraid of failure? No, not at all. Am I concerned about making mistakes that could genuinely harm my submissive or lead her in a direction that could cause irreparable damage? You bet your ass I am. And for that reason, I think very carefully about everything I do as a Dominant when it comes to giving guidance or setting life altering direction for my Muse. To do anything less would be utterly irresponsible and possibly just plain greedy or manipulative. I neither want that for me as a Dominant or her as my submissive.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Image Credit Unknown
Dominant Traits - Coaching
I wish I had a nickel for every time I have heard or seen something from new or wannabe dominants to the effect of, “I give the orders, you will do as your are told.” It leaves me shaking my head and trying to imagine what submissive would drop to their knees in the face of such a statement. Most subs I know would tell such a “dominant” where he could stick his orders and don’t let the door hit him in his orders on the way out.
Being a Dominant is not about simply being the boss. Its not like the military where rank assumes compliance and obedience. Just because you call yourself a dominant does not make you one, especially to someone who is not your submissive. The “rank” of Dominant or Master is not assumed by the Dominant but rather is bestowed upon them by a submissive or peer group. You are not a Dominant or Master until someone else says you are, no matter how much you might wish it. Declaring oneself a “dominant” and then randomly barking orders is frankly just laughable sad really.
While I have dabbled for over three decades in BDSM and loving D/s relationships you might notice that I do not refer to myself as a Dominant in self descriptions on my blog front page. Partly that is because I was not in an active D/s relationship at the time I started this blog. To me that meant I was what I was, a 40-something male who likes to explore loving and sensual D/s relationships, and nothing more. In my mind I did not become a Dom again until my Muse asked me to take her under my hand and identified me as her “Sir” or Master. She gave me the right to the title again, I did not assume it.
This is an important point because it cuts to the heart of why a Dominant has the authority to give “orders” in the first place. A Dom only has power over a submissive because they have been granted that power by the submissive. And submissives don’t just grant that power because someone sewed the rank of “dominant” on their own leather. They grant the power of authority to someone whom they respect, trust, desire, and believe has their best interests at heart. They grant the power to someone they see as a competent leader, a mentor, and a coach. They grant the power to someone with whom they feel completely safe and protected. Then and only then does a Dominant have the built-up cache to be able to give instructions and orders.
So yes, I as a Dominant do in fact give orders. But my orders are not simply motivated by a desire for blind obedience by another human being but rather are often targeted at a higher purpose. Sure, sometimes they are for my personal pleasure, but by and large they are designed to craft the kind of relationship that both my Muse and I desire. They are designed to instill knowledge, establish norms of behavior, set expectations for performance, and above all, challenge my Muse to be the best person she can possibly be both in and outside of our relationship. They are also designed to similarly challenge me. I always strive to be a better person, a better partner, a better Dominant, and have our mutual interests always at heart. Or at least I try my very best.
It is that which motivates my Muse to be obedient and compliant. Her awareness that I am always striving for both of us to be the best that we can be for one another, and everyone we come in contact with, motivates her to want to always be better, be more.
Being a Dominant is not so much about assuming authority as it is about being a leader. A leader earns the right to lead from those being led. My Muse follows me because she desires to be led by me. I have never told her she should or has to. Therefore, my Muse gives me all the power I have as a Dominant. What I do with that power is up to me. But if I use that power unwisely or selfishly, it will evaporate and my Muse will opt to vote with her feet. So it is with most any D/s relationship. D/s is, after all, a consensual agreement between two free people and thus can be terminated when one or the other is not satisfied. D/s and even M/s are not true slavery, even when we choose to call it that.
So then, if a Dominant is not simply a boss by virtue of positional authority then what is he? I argue that a Dominant is in fact a leader, a coach, and perhaps above all a mentor. According to Webster, a mentor is “someone who is looked upon for wise advice and guidance.” Note that it is the mentee who does the looking, not the mentor. Mentors don’t just grab people off the street and say, “I am going to be your mentor.” A mentor is adopted in a sense by someone who has great admiration and respect for them, by someone who in essence “wants what they have.” The same is fundamentally true of being a Dominant. We can certainly go looking around at the pool of potential subs and make our own advances, but ultimately, it is the submissive that decides who will be their leader or if they will take on a leader at all. It is that decision by the submissive that empowers the Dominant, and that decision is only earned, not taken.
So coaching and mentoring are very much a part of being a Dominant and indeed may be the most important of skill sets. Teaching, guiding, and leading are all soft skills that many people do not associate with the hard exterior of a Dominant, but in point of fact, they are the very skills that empower a person to be dominant. People will not willingly follow a domineering oppressor for very long, but a skillful and compassionate leader will garner legions of followers. The challenge then becomes choosing who among the would be followers is worthy of being led. That my friends is dominance worthy of the title, Dominant or Master.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Image Credit Unknown
"I won’t ask for a spanking! I will just misbehave until I get one." Cute sentiment, but absolutely unacceptable behavior by a submissive in my opinion. In fact, thoughts such as these are not submissive at all but more a form of self-serving dominant behavior a passive aggressive form of topping from the bottom. In scene terms, this sort of behavior is generally considered that of a brat sub not something viewed particularly favorably by most Dominants. In fact, such behavior by a submissive reflects poorly on their Dominant who has clearly failed to establish and maintain boundaries and protocol as displayed by the submissive for all to see. As is often said, it is the submissive who demonstrates what sort of Dominant she answers to.
Now don’t get me wrong, being a submissive does not necessarily imply that one has to give up their entire personality and become some form of mindless automaton (being a slave might have other implications). There is certainly room in my D/s relationship for playfulness and even the expression of desire by my Muse. That freedom of expression does not mean that she will always get her way, but she is free to express herself, her needs, and her desires. If she desires something specific she may respectfully request it, “if it pleases you Sir.” What she receives in return might in fact be what she asked for now or at a later time of my choosing, something else entirely, or nothing at all. But my response to her request is always for our mutual good and benefit. In other words, my Muse is encouraged and free to ask, she just may not always receive in the manner and time requested, though often she does. Bottom line, the choice is mine.
On the other hand, brat behavior or topping from the bottom is never acceptable in my view and is met with disapproval and something other than what a submissive might be seeking. Brat behavior such as seeking a sensual spanking or other self-centered pleasurable activity through misbehavior or failure to perform never results in the “punishment” sought but rather something else far more distasteful or displeasing such as writing about why topping from the bottom is inappropriate behavior times or more.
As important as it is for a Dominant to reward excellence, correct errors in a timely, fair and educational manner, and only punish for willful misconduct, it is equally important never to inadvertently reward topping from the bottom with a desired outcome. To do so sends mixed signals to a submissive about the role they play in the relationship and expected behaviors and boundaries.
One does not have to be a stern task master all of the time to accomplish this. My Muse has scope to be playful and even “take advantage or control” of her Sir now and again in a sensual or sexual sense. She is allowed to proverbially and literally “be on top” and “have her way” with me now and again. Hell, it is fun for both of us. But we both know when this occurs it is because I allow or desire it, not because she is topping from the bottom. There is a subtle but important psychological difference. In other words, she is allowed to have her fun too, but within the confines of our protocol and always knowing who is ultimately the Dominant and who is the submissive. In effect, even when she is “having her way with me” it is understood that it is because I am allowing it and desire it. In a strange way, “having her way” is still understood to be performing a service for her Dominant.
Here on Tumblr as in my personal D/s life, I focus heavily on the emotional aspects of D/s relationships and in doing so tend to write much of love, respect, honor, trust, and emotional bonding. One could infer from my writing that I am something of a “kinder gentler” Dominant who is soft and mushy with his submissive and therefor perhaps “not all that Dominant.” That would be a mistake.
I do indeed go to great lengths to build strong emotional bridges and bonds between my Muse and me, and I relish in her strong personality and playfulness. In many respects I encourage my Muse’s growth both in life and as a submissive, at times guiding her and encouraging her to be more assertive with her needs and desires and be less of a people pleaser. This may appear to be a strange and seemingly counterintuitive role for a Dominant but one that is quite familiar to many practicing and experienced Doms. However, while I am a deeply emotional being desiring a strong heartfelt tie with my submissive and encouraging her independence in many facets of life, my boundaries and expectations are clear, my enforcement of those boundaries consistent and firm, and my will resolute.
I cannot think of a time that I have ever had to raise my voice to my Muse or in any way forcefully call her out. A few softly uttered words, a look, a hand on the shoulder, even a raised eyebrow are enough to stop her in her tracks and do a complete reset. This is indeed a significant form of power that I enjoy with my Muse. But it exists not in spite of my emphasis on emotional bonding and concern for her growth and personal expression but because of it. The closer our bond, the greater our trust and respect, the more guiding my efforts toward her personal growth, the more riveted she is on me, my desires, my needs, my boundaries, and our protocol. The more she desires to serve her Sir.
There is no doubt that every now and then my Muse slips toward a tendency to top from the bottom. She is after all a very dominant person in her daily life and in her household. Submission is not her default setting as it were. Yet submission is something she not only desires but craves. Perhaps because it is not her natural predisposition she has a need to be able to submit all the more and it takes a firm and steady hand to bring her to that state of submission and keep her there. That does not mean that she is a brat sub by any means, she is not. My Muse does not willfully set out to have her way by manipulating her Dominant. She does however have a strong personality, as many submissive’s do, and seeks a firm and guiding hand to take control and use that control wisely. Allowing her to top from the bottom would in fact be a let down for her and a failure on my part to give her what she most craves the ability to submit without question or reservation.
As a submissive, topping from the bottom or otherwise attempting to manipulate a Dominant into granting specific desires is not only a sign of poor submission and perhaps even more so a sign of poor Dominance, it is a submissive cheating themselves out of that which they most crave the ability to submit completely, serve devotedly, and clear that cluttered mind for a time of the need to fix, manage and control. I strongly recommend that submissives not undermine that which they most crave submission.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Image Credit Unknown
This image, though not particularly titillating or revealing, always seems to stop me in my tracks. Its not so much the quality of the image that attracts me as what is says about the quality of the D/s relationship that I strive for. And just like a real relationship, this image for me is all about the little things.
This presumably imaginary model couple are displaying trust, affection, and passion. Their bond is evident beyond the bondage in a passionate embrace and kiss. Their roles as Dominant and submissive are emphasized beyond the obvious chains, cuffs and collar by their superior and inferior physical positioning the ratio of clothing to bare skin his gentle grasp of the chain her supine exposed breast and belly, a universal sign of submission to, and trust of, a leader in the animal kingdom.
The bond depicted here speaks not of subjugation by bludgeoned force but rather willing and eager submission to a powerful and respected leader. There is a desire to consume and be consumed and yet there is also an equally evident desire to protect and be protected. There is security within the aura projected by the Dominant and emotional and sexual validation and sense of being needed provided to the Dom by the affection, trust and desire of the submissive. There is mutual desire and mutual need. There is mutual fulfillment.
When I look at an image such as this I see so much more than bondage pornography. I see a mirror of the D/s relationship I strive for with my Muse that has long been lacking in our respective lives. I see the embodiment of two people who crave one another and through the growth of themselves and their D/s bond have come to not only desire but to actually need one another. No one thing brings about this sort of bond, its the culmination of many small things that add up to one irresistible attractive force. Ultimately, the D/s bond that my Muse and I know is a based upon a long series of unmet needs mutually fulfilled.
In our D/s relationship as in this image, it is not that we are so stunningly beautiful, fit the stereotypical BDSM imagery, or even scene particularly hard with one another. The image we portray to the world is that of a vanilla couple of pretty average appearance and manner with which we carry ourselves. We don’t stand out in a crowd other than for our obvious age difference. But our relationship, like that depicted in this image, stands out to anyone who gives even more than a passing glance. We are bonded together fiercely and strongly. But it is not a show, it is not presented to the world as a badge of honor. It just is. It is who we are and how we are when we are together.
Here on Tumblr and elsewhere in life, it is my observation that some folks seem to try too hard, perhaps in an effort to be something they are not or to be more “dominant” or “submissive” than the next person. I suggest casting aside for a time the strutting and posturing, seeking to portray and certain image of what a “proper” D/s relationship should “look” like. Its not the clothes, adornments, hardware, titles or even how hard we can play that make for Dominance and submission. The power and mutuality of a D/s bond are often the result of being aware of and attentive to one another’s heart and mind. The D/s fire and passion that can be ignited results from trust, respect, and the mutual fulfillment of unmet needs. And in these instances, in my personal experience, it is all about the little things.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Image © Ken Marcus
This is the beauty, the essence, the crucial part.
Everything I do, be it a touch, a breath, gentle or firm. A sensation. Hot or cold. Pleasant or a bit less so perhaps.
Unexpected sensations from unexpected sources perhaps, a strawberry or a chili each leaving an impression in their own way. A vampire glove or a feather, a breeze or a bolt of lightning. Oh yes, candle and ice cube.
Each gasp and goose bump in response as if a reward. Each scream from your lungs, each throbbing in your core.
Every reaction the key to the next action. Patiently waiting for each sensation perhaps, or moving on before you catch your breath. Oh yes that moan, that gasp, that quiver quite enough. For now. Until the next action.
Because I might just give a little more, nay might take a little more, still. Always. Until I have exactly what I want.
M. / Her Liege
image: Fredi Scholze
BDSM - Life vs. Art
You know all those pictures that seem so hot and turn us on with their depictions of Dominance, submission, bondage, corporal, rough sex and even humiliation? The hand to the neck, the marks on the ass, the cock impaling a throat, the crawling down the street on all fours. These images stir something deep within those of us with a yearning to Dominate or submit in the sexual realm. They ignite a fire within that leads us to want to do these very things for ourselves or to another. They are the visual embodiment of a fantasy long held and that quite frankly is a good thing to my way of thinking. Nothing wrong with a kinky fantasy or the desire to act it out in our own lives.
But once we begin actually playing these scenes for ourselves, life at times does not completely imitate art. BDSM, really good BDSM, is hard. It takes considerable skill to make a scene flow seamlessly and without hiccup, interruption, or misstep. Perfect timing and pacing to maintain a mood, or carrying the sensations a submissive is experiencing along flawlessly, takes considerable practice and knowledge of a partner. And even at that, it is not always easy to keep things clicking just as you desire them. It is quite common to discover that the desires and kinks we thought would turn us on based upon images and our fantasies are, in practice, not all that enticing after all or may feel uncomfortable and even threatening.
Even those who have a great deal of experience and who go to great pains to identify limits and adhere to them can stumble. We are humans after all and our minds are often more fertile and forgiving playgrounds than reality. In a recent encounter with my Muse, here are just a few of the missteps and discoveries that could have derailed a scene or even a relationship had it not been for our close communication, extreme level of trust, and substantial empathy and willingness to be flexible.
** That hand to the throat that seems so sexy in pictures suddenly incites unanticipated panic with the slightest application of pressure.
** That cock so craved to be buried deep in the throat symbolizing utter submission results in uncontrollable gag reflex activation no matter how hard one tries or desires otherwise.
** Those red marks that seem so sexy in the pictures hurt. No, I mean they REALLY hurt! More than may be either pleasurable or desirable.
** The ropes so carefully tied so as not to cut off circulation or rest on any pressure or nerve points still result in fingers going numb…for a day or two.
** The silicone anal lube and toys so carefully chosen for comfort and flexibility result in a painful burning internal skin reaction.
** The desire to kneel and crawl being so intense yet damaged ankles and knees preclude doing so for more than a moment or two.
** The vibrator that in pornographic depictions of repeated orgasms results instead in over-stimulation and deadened sensation. Orgasm fail.
Any one of these might serve to derail an otherwise good scene or spoil the mood irrevocably in BDSM play. The fact that they all happened in a few short hours yet did not derail the scene or result in a cessation of play speaks to an ability to sense trouble, communicate, adjust, refocus and move on. In short, it is a sign of the trust we have in one another, the empathy we share, and the desire to please and be pleasing even in the face of the unexpected or error.
We have some skill, my Muse and me. We know a bit of what we are doing and have a clear picture of our hard and soft limits. Yet for all that, stuff still happens on occasion sometimes more than others. And the more intense the scene, the faster the pace, the greater the exploration, and the harder the play, the more likely it is that unforeseen things crop up.
I am fortunate that I have never truly harmed anyone in the course of scene play and I go to great lengths to educate myself in hopes of never doing so. But that does not make me infallible as a Dom. I make mistakes. Things happen that were not foreseen. My Muse reacts in ways even she did not anticipate at times sometimes good, sometimes not. Success lies not in being perfect or infallible but in being knowledgeable, aware, empathic, and quick to change course when something seems amiss, and to do so gracefully and without a lot of fuss so as not to completely derail a scene. When life interferes with the fantasy, a good Dominant will strive to address the issue quickly and effectively and with the minimum amount of fuss so as not to lose the mood achieved thus far in a scene. They will also work to reestablish the mood, if lost, in a manner and pace appropriate to the submissive and their needs. A great Dominant however, will know not only how to continue effectively, but when not to continue at all and switch immediately to aftercare.
Things happen. Art is fantasy. Life is messy and complicated. As Dominant and submissive we strive to meet one another’s needs and compliment one another’s fantasies and desires. But sometimes even our own fantasies do not translate well into the real world and are best left as fantasy. But then, you never know until you try, which is why it is so very important to have a trusted, aware, and compassionate partner with whom you can safely explore and plumb the depths of your fantasy world. For when reality interferes with the fantasy, it is only our partner who stands between the two and can either keep the dream alive or save us from the nightmare.
Art inspires fantasy and fantasy inspires art, but every now and then life just does not cooperate. How we address those moments and move beyond them truly defines us as a D/s couple and the strength of our bond.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Image Credit Unknown
My fingers, of course, can reach in, brush gently, grab, pinch, explore, until every nook and cranny is familiar, inside and out. Cover and caress, each bump, crease, goosebump, time and again.
Skin on skin then, eyes wide open, no room for shadows. The slightest touch enough perhaps to make them go away this time, show all your glory in the brightest daylight.
I don’t care about the colour of your doubts, the size of your demons, they are mine too. And if I will have you, I will have you flaws and all. Greedy, remember?
Touch oh yes, inside, outside, what hides in the shadows and in broad daylight, until I know exactly how each and every part of you fits with each and every part of me. Touch I must, light and dark, the good, the bad and the better, all of it. Mine.
M. / Her Liege - image: Tono Stano - leave credits intact
The ‘exterior’ of D/s can seem so cold at times, ‘negotiations’, checklists, limits, consent. And for sure, these things are very important. But at the same time, they are also a small part of what D/s can be.
We reach deeper into each other than most people in a non-D/s relationship. It is, obviously, why all these ‘formalities’ are so important. But it is also part of what makes these connections so exceptional.
In exposing our deepest secrets, fears, desires and needs, we create a unique connection. Two people baring themselves, allowing another into their most hidden places (and I don’t mean anal, this time -) ). Giving the deepest and most vulnerable parts of themselves, honestly, openly.
It creates such close connections, and it inevitably also creates intimacy. Perhaps the notion of a flogger hitting skin is not everyone’s idea of a beautiful connection, but it is. Perhaps someone immobilised in tight bondage and face fucked is not everyone’s idea of intimate, but it is. A sub being fed from the fingers of a Dom? Does it get more intimate, more trusting, closer?
In D/s, we touch others more deeply with what we do, how we do things. Because we open ourselves up to each other and because we find unique ways to connect. This means that, between two people in such a relationship, a finger dragged down a naked spine can mean as much as a slap on the ass. It means a fist in hair can mean as much as a whisper, a stroke with a cane as much as a kiss.
We can call it ‘exploring the deepest secrets’ or an anal fuck, call it ‘stroking skin with sharp stings’ or cropping an ass, between a Dom and a sub it can be the most intimate moment. Each unique touch the mark of a unique bond.
A simple hand on a hip, a lock of hair twisted around a finger, a stroke with a whip, or a hand on a throat, they can signify ownership, dominance, control, and so much more. But they can also signify the closest, most profound and most intimate connection possible.
M / Her Liege - image from the movie ‘Intimacy’ - leave credits intact.
What put you there is irrelevant now.
Let’s say it was words. My words.
What keeps you there is the question.
No, not a whip, nor my hands on your skin.
There is no leather or rope in sight.
What keeps you there is not force, except
the strength of your desire and my will.
words: M. / Her Liege - image: Ambrose & Wether - leave credits intact
Training in D/s
This issue has always been a bit of a sore point with me … primarily because the notion of “training girls” gets thrown around so casually and thoughtlessly … and most often with connotations that can’t help but leave one to think of the process as no more than teaching a thoughtless animal to perform tricks on demand …
If that’s your particular take on things … to each his own I suppose … but I have to say that it doesn’t resonate with me at all … there may well be some sense in which submissive behaviour can be … and indeed is to some extent … modified in a similar way to that which would be used by a trainer when working with a dog or a horse for example … I just feel however … very strongly … that those who would limit themselves to this avenue are missing something much deeper and more to the point entirely …
Yes we are creatures of the earth so to speak … both Dom and sub … subject to our lusts … just like those other animals we like to think of as “lower” … but neither of us is ever simply that either … and this is something so obvious I can’t think I should really need to explain it …
So of course you may look to treat me like “Pavlov’s dog” … and possibly make some headway … watch her sit up and bark on command … watch her prance around to capture your attention … watch her suck that cock like the sweet little pet she is … great stuff I’m sure … but if that’s all you look for just be aware … you will get no more …
True obedience … from a living breathing woman … can never be trained in that sense … it can’t be coerced or manipulated into existence … it can only be earned …
Real devotion is a higher order response … that flows from the human soul … and it won’t be inspired to answer to the call of a shallow tyrant or a narcissistic child with a whip … who never looks beyond the easy rewards of action and reaction … and looks to think of and treat “submissives” as if they are no more than mindless “creatures” …
Certainly we will often “play” in ways that evoke that aspect of our natures … the beasts within us … so in that context she may well be reduced to an animalistic level in those moments … as a function of mutual consent … but the fact remains … in a larger sense she is never less than what she always was … a whole human being of equal value …
Real training must therefore appeal to that other level … the mind that thinks … the heart that loves … the soul that aches to bond with yours … it must reach inside … speaking seduction to all you are … if it is to win any kind of true and lasting obedience …
To be trained therefore … in the sense I think of it … is rather to be shown … carefully and with respect … how a submissive may find in you a safe place to realize her natural inclinations … a home where the obedience that wants to flow from her heart will be valued and used by one who actually knows exactly what it is that he holds in his hands …
No need for the dog training then … you will have all in the only way that could ever really matter … the gift of a life … from one heart to another … the surrender of her soul … pure and honest devotion … as free as the butterfly that wants only to light on your finger … when you call it home …
Dominant Traits - Claiming
One of the erotic pleasures a submissive experiences in a D/s relationship is to be utterly claimed and taken by their Dominant. I am not referring to forced sex or God forbid, rape. I am talking about being completely possessed by the One who has been chosen for such a privilege. To be willingly and completely overwhelmed emotionally, physically and sexually. To have all reason and responsibility so swamped by the controlled passion and will of the Dominant that there is nothing left but to succumb to the sensation and feeling of the moment. To submit utterly and completely to the momentary higher power that is their Dominant.
A Dominant takes what is his and makes it his own, but only from a willing and able accomplice. Which is not to say that he does not take at a time, place and mood of his choosing. The submissive may not always be prepared or even eager in that moment, but in the context of the D/s relationship and the agreements and protocols of the couple, the Dominant takes what has been given in ways and times of his choosing. Sometimes there is a long dance leading to the ultimate claiming, an introduction and prelude to the final act. Other times it is seemingly random and sudden a shot out of the dark, jarring, unexpected, adding to the rendered feelings of helplessness and surrender. But either way, this Dominance leads to consensual surrender and is all part of the grander D/s dance of the couple.
A submissive longs to be claimed and even used by their Dominant but only in ways that have been previously agreed to. The hard and soft limits established between Dominant and submissive form the boundary of experience, the fence around the playground as it were. But within that playground the Dominant is given free reign to push and prod and explore and challenge. There may be limits on the activities but often no limits on the pace. Part of claiming is often in fact a function of timing and ferocity of the Dominance in addition to the intensity of sensation. Or conversely it may be slow and measured, controlled in the extreme to the point of denial and madness. Either way, the force of will of the Dominant drowns the submissive in a sea of mental, emotional and physical sensation, leaving them helpless but to be tossed about by the waves and currents generated by their Dominant. And they would have it no other way.
There is something primal in the act of claiming and being claimed. Something akin to the proverbial cave man taking what we want, using it for pleasure or procreation, forgoing all the niceties and societal norms of behavior and just laying claim and taking. None of the phone calls and dating, dinners and flowers, romancing and bowing. Sometimes we just want to take or be taken, use or be used, serve or be served, be the instrument or the musician. But we only want this for and by the one we have chosen for that honor and privilege. The illusion only works if we know that we are safe, desired, honored and will be cared for and cherished or even forgiven when it is all over. Unlike the stereotypical cave man who clubs his quarry and drags her by the hair back to his lair, our D/s claiming only feels that way for a time. We all know that shortly there will be a coming down and aftercare, cuddling and loving, a gradual return to our daily lives. It is an illusion, but a most compelling one to be sure.
One of the most difficult things for a new Dominant is to bring themselves to be Dominant enough. It is often surprising how much more a submissive desires to give than a loving and caring Dominant is prepared to take. While a Dominant may in fact be effective in their emotional and psychological dominance there can be hesitation in the physical realm, a genuine concern not to harm their submissive, push too hard, or risk being rejected for the strength of their desires or perhaps not forgiven for their actions.
This is a healthy empathy to have as a Dominant but it can also serve to hold one back unnecessarily. As often as I hear from submissives about so-called dominants who in fact are nothing but abusers in disguise, I also hear from submissives about Dominants who are just not dominant enough a longing to be used and taken more than seems to be within the capability of their Dominant. It could reasonably be asked then, how can they be a Dominant if they are not dominant enough? We are talking about degrees of Dominance here, not questioning ability or the presence of natural dominant tendency.
A submissive is alternately more delicate and tougher than we tend to think, both physically and mentally. When handed the reigns, a Dominant can push pretty darn hard and the submissive will both relish it and bounce back rather surprisingly. On the other hand, with the wrong words or insensitive actions, a Dominant can damage a submissive mightily and perhaps permanently. Being too dominant in play or scene is generally not the undoing of a D/s relationship being uncaring or unfeeling frequently is.
So when a submissive gives her Dominant permission and scope to be taken, she darn well means that she wants to be. Do so! Claim her. Take her. Challenger her. Bend her. But do not break her. Stay within the fence she has put around the playground but otherwise play hard and even a little rough. Its OK. She comes to her Dominant with the hope and expectation that she will be pushed and prodded yet still kept safe. She longs to be overwhelmed by the One for whom she kneels. There is a distinct and important difference between hurt and harm and it is best that Dominant and submissive sort out which is which and where those boundaries are. One is okay, the other is not.
Claiming is indeed a Dominant trait and a longing to be claimed is just as equally a trait of submissives. It is part of why we fit hand-in-glove together so well. Matching the degree to which one desires to claim or be claimed is the key to meeting one another’s needs, and for some there will simply never be a meeting of the minds. But when we find a partner who has complimentary desires and needs, the D/s dance is like no other intense, fiery, passionate, even primal.
Take and be taken, claim and be claimed, and you will feel a connection to one another bordering on the sublime.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Image Credit Unknown
Reclaiming some of my words…
My Slut, NOT A Slut
My Muse is at times, and by her choice, my slut. She can be a wanton, needy, desperate ball of sex and sensuality. She can throw herself at my feet begging to please me in the basest manners. She will plead to be spanked and fucked and taken and generally used as a tool of my pleasure. In short, she can be the sluttiest woman I have ever met and I love her for it. But that said, my Muse is anything but a slut. Indeed she is rather conservative, a bit prim, has a great deal of respect for herself and her femininity, and is guarded with her emotions and sensuality. Indeed most men would see her as reserved, aloof and even a little standoffish. The antithesis of a slut.
I have never been one to find the “popular” girls particularly attractive. The undulating, underdressed bodies seeking attention on the night club dance floor, or the wildly popular cheerleader who sleeps with half the football team are not for me. I have never found such behaviors either appealing or sexy, regardless of how physically attractive the person. The classic “slut” behaviors have always had quite the opposite effect on me a complete turnoff. Perhaps I simply do not share well. Or perhaps I prefer a challenge.
Give me the proverbial attractive yet conservative librarian with a strong mind and sense of self, substantial self-respect, a modicum of modesty and restraint, who turns into a submissive vixen behind closed doors for her One and I am hooked utterly slain. That in short is my Muse. I cannot think of anyone who would look to her and even remotely think “slut” when they meet her. She would rather be reading, listening to classical music and tending her garden than being on the hunt for men. But behind closed doors, beyond the light of those who know her, a caged sensual animal craving to be set free resides. But the keys to the cage are not given to just anyone. Only one is granted the key to that lock. But once in the hand of the One she has chosen, that key opens a side to her that no one else has ever seen and that in some instances she didn’t even know existed. A metamorphosis occurs and my Muse becomes My slut. MY slut. Mine.
It is perhaps the juxtaposition of the two extremes between her reserved conservative face to the world and her wanton slutty inner self that makes my Muse’s submission so very powerful and rewarding. I know that I am receiving something very special from my Muse to which I and I alone have been granted access. Submission is not her default personality and does not come particularly naturally. I have worked very hard to unlock this hidden part of her, and she in turn gratefully and enthusiastically rewards me with submission and service. Like a precious gem stone, its the rarity that makes her submission so exciting and intoxicating. There are lots of shiny objects in the world, yet only a certain few truly capture our imagination and make us treasure them for their rare beauty. My Muse and her submission are just such a gem.
If my Muse flirted with every guy that walked by, threw herself at the feet of many, or took her submission lightly, she would hold little interest and reward for me and would not be particularly worthy in my view of the hard work I put into our D/s relationship. But the fact that my Muse, My slut, is anything but “a slut” in life, holding that part of herself exclusively for me, makes her submission the most intoxicating and rewarding gift ever.
My Muse craves to be My submissive slut, but anyone who deigns think of her or refer to her as “a slut” had better be prepared for a most unsubmissive response. She is a beautiful and poised woman who just so happens to be My slut. Mine.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Image © MPL Studios
Footnote: For those with a differing perspective on this, I am stating here a personal preference, and am neither judging or expressing how anyone else should live their lives or conduct themselves. However that said, my blog, my personal preferences. Simple. Cheers!
It’s relatively easy to dominate through pain and rough sex. Some men need that to exert their limited sense of control. But find a man who makes you obey, without raising his voice or his hand, without so much as getting up from his chair, and I would say you are home.
Dominant Traits - Civility
Forgive me while I rant for a moment.
As I watch our elected officials here in the U.S. squabble and lob epithets and ultimatums at one another over virtually every conceivable topic, I have been reflecting on the loss of civility, decorum, and respect in the current age. Day after day I see evidence of a breakdown in the behavioral norms that I was raised with not so very long ago. The idea of treating people with respect, even and perhaps especially those we dislike or disagree with, seems to have been lost in the last few decades. I like to refer to it as the “Jerry Springerization of America,” where the nasty and tacky behavior of so called talk show “guests,” reality TV “performers,” and “celebrities” behaving badly somehow became the accepted norm of interpersonal behavior. Where labeling people replaced the use of respectful titles embarrassing and humiliating others in public took the place of discretion and a personal sense of shame intolerance, dogma and ideology replaced compromise and statesmanship respect for institutions and beliefs replaced with scorn, derision and even vandalism shouting and interruption seemingly forever casting aside thoughtful discourse and rational discussion.
Even the so-called “News” is little but one carefully chosen “commentator” attacking the intelligence of another in a running battle of epithets and insults rather than any actual journalism. It is entertainment by argument. Ralph Kramden, Archie Bunker and Lucille Ball were entertaining when they argued with their sitcom spouses, but they always kissed and made up at the end of the half hour. Everything I see today in media, politics and real life shows people doing little but stalking off to their corners in anger plotting their next attack or revenge. It all leaves me feeling rather cold.
I personally find this behavior today both in public and private to be offensive, reprehensible and downright disgusting. We have become so self-obsessed with our own egos - feelings, desires, needs, and dogmas - that no one else and their views or needs are of any importance or value. It feels quite literally like a breakdown in society in favor of the individual and I believe it is wrong from an interpersonal to a global scale. It can lead us to no good.
Among the many things that attract me to D/s is the highly respectful, ritualized, and formal way in which we often communicate with one another as Dom and sub and among our broader D/s community. Relationships built on Dominance and submission often have a language and form of interaction all their own that can vary quite dramatically from filthy to formal, even within the same couple. A scene with my Muse may begin by speaking softly in highly ritualized formality. Doing so sets the tone of mutual respect and obedience to authority. As the scene progresses that formal tone likely shifts to something far more raunchy as the recipient of my passion and desire transforms from being “my beautiful and loving Muse” to “my dirty girl and wanton slut.” Yet surprisingly, even the latter is in its own way deeply respectful and ritualized. It is part of our dance, the steps to which we have long since learned and agreed to.
D/s is life by extremes in a sense. The extreme level of respect my Muse and I share between one another makes room for the level of degradation and even humiliation we sometimes allow ourselves. The very formal manner of speaking and the respectful and consistent use of titles enhances the power exchange but also serves to maintain the air of respect even when engaging in seeming overtly disrespectful activities. The establishment of, and adherence to protocol sets expectations of behavior and treatment that brings predictability to our relationship and sets standards for achievement.
It is such expectations of behavior and standards for achievement that I find so lacking in society at large a place where good enough to get by is good enough, and what I say about you doesn’t matter as long as it makes me feel better. When not in scene, my Muse and I do not always communicate in a highly stylized and formal manner. To do so would seem awkward at best, especially when out in the world. But even in private we tend to communicate as one would in any vanilla intimate relationship. We save our most formal communication and behavior for when we are in-scene or when we have something serious to discuss about our D/s relationship expectation setting, course correction, punishment, or other forms of level setting. The rest of the time we look pretty much like anyone else, with one exception.
The formality, ritual, and expected norms of behavior inherent in our D/s bond carry over into our daily lives as a couple. Not in a highly stylized manner but rather in an overall air of civility and respect. We speak to one another respectfully. We do not shout at one another. When things are not right between us we discuss them thoughtfully and seek the compromise necessary to move forward comfortably and happily. We make one another our highest priority and when we disagree we do so respectfully, explaining why we feel the way we do, endeavoring at the same time to make the other feel valued and valid for their differing point of view. The end result is that there is respect for one another and an air of civility that surrounds our obviously tight knit pair bonding both in and out of scene. Accordingly, our respectful and civil behavior toward one another extends beyond what one author termed as our “couple bubble” to the world around us. We endeavor to be respectful and civil with all whom we come into contact with. At least we try.
I do not profess that D/s is the cure all for the social ills of the world by any means, and indeed it is not something either desirable of appropriate for the vast majority of the population. I am however personally attracted to the formality, ritual, respect, and clear expectations of behavior and achievement that D/s gives us the structure to set forth. In that regard, D/s satisfies a need for me that I find lacking in much of the rest of my interaction with the world. In the context of my blog, I strive to approach people with respect and the vast majority of Tumblrs I have encountered have responded in kind with respect and civility. Here on Tumblr, as in my D/s relationship with my Muse, I seek to create that which I desire. And perhaps what I desire above all else is a world governed by moral, ethical and behavioral standards founded in respect and civility. If I cannot live in such a world then perhaps I can strive to create my own little corner of it.
One of the most surprising benefits to me of being a practicing Dominant and engaging in a committed D/s relationship has been the satisfying and gratifying level of respect and civility it has brought to my life. I find that I have a need for such decorum and strive for more of it every day.
Caption Copyright - For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Image Credit Unknown
Things that go drip in the night
These slow drips have been known to drive people insane.
Yes you might lie there and think you know what happens next. The cold on your skin, so close. Just cold brushing the surface, not touching, no. Just the hint, enough to cause goosebumps.
The odd drip elicits a gasp, your body reaches out, wants more, closer, touch. Any touch, even icy cold. Another drip. But want is not enough.
No reaching out, no, except for those goosebumps, and other peaks that reveal your desire. But not you, no. No touch, except another little drip.
A bit lower then. Didn’t say you could move. Don’t. The cold seems closer, does it? Or is it your imagination? No I won’t drive you insane, only with lust perhaps. Because want is not enough. Drip.
Need is what I want to see, raw, uninhibited need, desperation if you like, your body’s shameless begging, complete surrender, yes!
But most of all, pure and undiluted need. The kind that melts an ice cube. And who knows where that damned thing might go when I get what I want.
words : M. / Her Liege - image by JMB - please leave credits intact
"I am afraid of the dark", she said.
“I am your torch”, He replied.
The Leash Has Two Ends - Responsibility
Let’s face it, almost every one of us who has been attracted to D/s or BDSM came to it first because of exposure to some erotic imagery and the fantasy it conjured for us. Our minds wrote a story of what the images meant to us and how we fit into them. For me that first exposure came at a pretty young age and sparked something within that has never left me across the decades. Whether one identifies with submissiveness or Dominance, each of us view these images through our respective lenses and they evoke emotions and physical responses within us. For some it is simply sexual excitement while for others it is something far deeper and more visceral a yearning, a longing, a need. Still others find any introduction to BDSM completely disgusting and degrading or simply not to their liking. And you know what? That’s okay.
But for those of us who feel some lifelong yearning for Dominance or submission, the deeply seated emotional and psychological gratification produced by D/s affects us at a core level. It is not an idle sexual curiosity or titillation brought about by popular culture or social media. It is something we have harbored all of our lives and require in some form of human interaction in order to feel whole and fulfilled.
It has never been particularly easy to find like-minded people who view D/s through the lens of the yearning Dominant or submissive. Even those who were similarly inclined did not have a forum for acknowledging, let alone exploring, their desires in a safe and anonymous environment. That is until the advent of the Internet and the two-decade evolution from news groups to forums to chat rooms to social media. Finding like minded people is easier than ever. They seem to be everywhere. The difficulty now is not one of scarcity but of trying to sort the wheat from the chaff as it were identifying the people with a genuine need to experience D/s in their lives from those who just want a little kink. Both are okay, but they have very differing needs and desires that are not necessarily complimentary to one another.
There is no question that the convergence of social media and the explosion of popular curiosity about BDSM and D/s relationships, brought about in part by the Shades” phenomenon, has brought people out of the woodwork to satisfy their curiosity or simply get a little kinky titillation. Tumblr has certainly done that in spades as have other forums. It is also fair to say that it has given voice to those who have a strong need to incorporate D/s into their ongoing daily lives. For better of for worse, we are all here together.
It is fair to say that the vast majority of people exploring and satisfying their curiosity about BDSM are out to get a few kicks and have no particular desire to adopt D/s as a way of life. And there is nothing wrong with that provided it is purely a process of consumption. By that I mean observing from afar. Looking at imagery and reading texts as a form of pornography or even education is just fine and completely innocuous in my book. But social media allows us to not only observe but to also interact with other people people with real lives, real feelings and emotions. The moment we reach past the masturbatory images on the screen to communicate with someone else, we are impacting them and their lives. How we do that, and how responsible we are in that interaction, is an entirely personal decision but the results go far beyond getting ones own rocks off. This is not a “virtual girlfriend” video game, though the impersonal and remote nature of the communication can make it feel that way. Real people with families, friends, co-workers and feelings are on the other end.
So when we reach out and begin to “play” Dom or sub in the virtual space we attach an emotional leash between us as real in the mind as any leather or chain leash in the physical world. Attachments are developed and deep connections made. D/s has a way of breeding those more quickly and deeply than many other forms of relationship in my experience. We allow ourselves to be open and vulnerable to one another. And in so doing we connect in ways we might never have before. But we are also easy prey for the ill intended, inconsiderate, or just plain narcissistic. For example, when a person who really just wants to play a little at being a “Dom,” get a few kicks and maybe get laid, reaches into the heart and mind of a submissive who has a need for Dominance in a relationship and seeks a deep emotional connection, trouble is fast brewing. The submissive may feel used and in fact perhaps they have been. It is crucial that we understand what we want in the interaction, that we are honest about our desires and intentions, and that we do not lead people who have allowed themselves to be vulnerable and exposed into something they need but that we have no intention of fulfilling. In effect I am saying, be honest and play nice. Kindergarten rules.
When a Dom accepts the devotion of a submissive they also accept an enormous responsibility for the emotional and physical well being of that person. A submissive may wear a leash and allow herself to be guided by a Dominant, but in grasping that leash a Dominant accepts full responsibility for it and all that is attached to it physical and emotional. When a submissive hands herself over to a Dominant it is an awesome and even fearsome responsibility, so much so that it sometimes keeps me awake at night. My Muse has given me everything she is and I owe it to her to give her everything I am in return. The weight of bearing the leash is the same whether Dominant or submissive. A leash has two equal and opposite ends.
So while we may “play” at Dominance and submission in a scene replete with BDSM and kinky sex, there is often far more to it than that. There is often a profound emotional need deep within the Dominant and/or submissive that is being fulfilled by the bond between the two. Sometimes it is addressing needs, wounds, or things that were missing in our lives as far back as childhood. This stuff can run very, very deep and cuts badly when abused, mistreated or neglected.
As Dominants AND submissives, we have a responsibility to be aware of our partners’ needs and just how deeply our interaction is not only connecting, but also potentially completing and healing one another. In extreme instances, withdrawal of that connection can carry with it all of the intensity of feeling and emotion of a death in the family or even of oneself. When we engage in D/s and allow ourselves to connect this deeply we are treading on some very tender spots in the hearts and minds of both Dominant and submissive. Some of those tender spots may in fact be open wounds. That vulnerability and emotional access is indeed the gift of Dominance and submission, but nurturing it and caring for it is also the awesome responsibility we accept in return.
The leash has two ends. What we do with them define us as Dominant and submissive.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Image Credit Unknown
A fingertip on a shoulder, a warm breath in a neck, fingers twisting a lock of hair, a nail moving slowly up an arm, a whispered word, an arm brushing past a nipple, a thumb brushing down a spine, to that spot. Yes. That one.
Possession is a wink across the room, a raised eyebrow, a soundless word, a gentle smile, an evil grin, the motion of a hand, a simple understanding that rarely needs restating in any obvious way.
A state of mind, possessed, deliciously so in every way. On both sides. The beauty of two-way traffic, give and take. Mind and body. Gentle and brutal. Every shade of the spectrum covered.
Because sometimes possession is a different hand. A firm, uncompromising grasp. Flesh not caressed, but explored, probed, taken. No questions, no hesitation. Knowing fingers posting a reminder. “Mine.”
Oh yes, possessed, and it will show, or should I say be felt. One swift hand, one whispered word. They mean so much more.
words: M. / Her Liege - image: source information welcome.
Submissive Traits - Access
"Apparently I am just supposed to spread my legs whenever he demands it." - Angry commentary to the demanding behavior of a domestic partner.
"I love giving my Sir unrestricted access to His body, any time, anywhere." - Eager acceptance of the expectations of a Dominant.
Two diametrically opposed sentiments one woman. In one circumstance she is emotionally closed to the sexual advances of a domestic partner and in the other she eagerly and unconditionally grants unfettered access to her Dominant. Wherein lies the difference? Without judging the morality or ethics of the circumstance, lets take a look at the behaviors of the two men in question and why they might have such a significantly differing impact on the same woman.
Respect - The extreme devotion and consequent high levels of sexual energy between a Dominant and a submissive do not result solely from the prospect of titillating kinky sex play as many imagine. Indeed devotion, service and sensuality are a direct byproduct of the respect a submissive has for her Dominant. In my experience, the greater the respect, the deeper the submission and service and thus the desire for sensuality and sexuality. The inverse of this is never more painfully obvious than when cocky, flogger brandishing, wannabe doms strut around issuing commands and ultimatums at “submissives.” Their success rate is low by virtue of the fact that they behave more like the demanding domestic partner in the example above than the competent Dominant who seems to “get it all.”
Domestic partners who thoughtlessly demand sexual gratification and some wannabe doms who behave similarly, have a great deal in common. They are motivated only by their own pleasure and treat their “partner” as little more than a tool to be used whenever it suits them and ignored or even cast aside when it doesn’t. There is little interest in the needs and desires of their “partner.” Conversely, a loving Dominant puts their energies into forging a trust bond and high levels of respect, the foundation of which is an abiding interest in and concern for the happiness, growth and well-being of their submissive. In doing this, the Dominant gains the respect necessary to set forth expectations of behavior and protocols that are not only met willingly but eagerly by the submissive. Far from feeling used, the submissive harbors an intense desire to be an implement of, and conduit for, the pleasure and service of her Dominant. She will go to great lengths to please the One who works so hard to nurture, empower and protect her.
So while the Dominant appears on the surface to be making demands and giving orders, it is the respect that has been carefully and consistently earned that cultivates the willingness and desire to serve on the part of their submissive. The so called “commands” are simply clarifying instructions and direction at that point. It is a process of motivation not demand. In the case of the domestic partner who has lost respect as a result of their behaviors and actions over time, including shattered trust, there is no foundation for giving orders or setting expectations. Their demands just come across as unreasonable, self-serving, and from an unworthy source. The seemingly dominant sexual advance is met not with willingness and devotion but with stone cold rejection and resentment.
Devotion - I often make reference to the remarkable devotion of a submissive to her Dominant, but what of the devotion of a Dominant to their submissive? The necessary respect mentioned above cannot be the hollow by-product of a con job or manipulation. It has to be genuine and it has to be consistent, or a submissive will see right through it and react as she would to a demanding and domineering domestic partner with rejection and resentment. Respect that is earned honestly and without falter results in devotion. And that devotion is the bedrock foundation of a desire to serve. But how does this come to be? I would argue that it is the Dominant who practices devotion and service to the submissive first, and with great consistency, that leads to the consequent respect and possibly eventual devotion and service by the submissive. Devotion is earned. It is not cultivated overnight. It can never be commanded.
Service - Earning respect and garnering devotion, unlocks the untapped desire of a submissive to serve and be of service. This simple sentence to me explains all there is to know about why a woman who has come to view themselves as having submissive needs would crave to serve one man and outright reject any other.
When a Dominant gains the trust and respect of their submissive they not only create an environment of desire but also safety both physical and, perhaps most importantly, emotional. The Dominant, through their nurturing and protective (not smothering) way, makes it possible for a submissive to sense and express feelings long repressed. The Dominant enables a submissive to talk about anything, explore ideas and desires long thought to be taboo, and challenges them to be better and more in all facets of their lives. As a result, the submissive feels open, safe, energized, desirous and desired. It is this nurturing process that allows a Dominant deep inside the soul of the submissive in a way no one has ever been given access before.
But once that access to the heart and mind of a submissive has been granted and that intense vulnerability exposed, she is a very fragile and delicate being that must be treated by the Dominant with considerable care, appreciation and continued devotion. This is where many domestic partners and wannabe doms completely fall flat and do great harm. Having got what they want after gaining a little access, perhaps even through outright narcissistic deceit, they turn on the submissive and use their vulnerability against them in the form of neglect, manipulation, or even abuse. Having dropped their defenses and allowed someone in, only to be trampled or ignored, the submissive is left feeling emotionally battered and cold. The walls go back up, perhaps never to come down again for the domestic partner, wannabe Dom, or any man.
The Dominant doesn’t work to tear down defensive walls but rather, like a stream flowing gently against the rocks, slowly, patiently and imperceptibly wears those walls away earning access to the inner most being of a submissive. Once there, He treads lightly and with loving respect and appreciation for the garden that lies within. In doing so, the Dominant earns and maintains the undying devotion and thus service of the submissive, in ways most men would consider to be positively unimaginable from any woman. The desire to serve the One worthy of service is unlocked by the Dominant and a wellspring of pleasure and devoted attention issues forth. It is a most powerful form of love.
Access - There is nothing that can compare to the devoted service of a submissive to their Dominant. The unfettered access to a submissive’s body granted to a Dominant is merely an outward manifestation of a much deeper access that has been granted to a submissive’s soul. But once granted and held safe in the hands of a loving and caring Dominant, no barriers exist between the two. And that is the ultimate goal of a D/s relationship.
Respect, devotion, service, access. One woman, two men ice and fire.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Image Credit Unknown
A Leash Has Two Ends
"If Dominance is an act of setting someone free, and submission is an act of willfully devoting oneself to another, then who is the captor and who is the captive? A leash after all has two ends, both of which must be held. Ultimately, Dominant and submissive are bound to one another not by chains but by their own need, and the mutual fulfillment of those needs. We do for one another what no one else can or will. We are here by choice and by choice we stay. And in that choosing, we are set free to be our most authentic selves."
From the post "Dominance, Submission and Freedom" © For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Image Credit Unknown
Dominance, Submission and Freedom
This wonderful image has been sitting on my desktop for some time now because it spoke to me about the essence of Dominance and submission. It poignantly reminds me of the role a loving Dominant plays in teaching, guiding and protecting while never holding a submissive captive. Indeed, the loving Dominant guides their submissive to be the best that they can be and in so doing sets them free free of themselves and the limitations imposed on them by upbringing, society at large, and a life lived. Ultimately it is the submissive who gratefully and graciously creates their own chains, committing themselves voluntarily to the Dominant who has taught them to fly.
The image also speaks to me of the loving emotional and physical touch of a Dominant who has the capacity to destroy yet has been grated the trust not to do so. For Dominance is not an act of holding something captive, crushing its spirit in an effort to bend it to one’s own will. The beauty and reward of submission is in fostering the soaring spirit, alive with energy and vitality, then having it come to roost forever tied to the Dominant who encourages their submissive to soar and be free. The Dominant is that perch, that safe haven, that place of rest and repose. To the devoted submissive, the Dominant is home.
The sexual and graphic BDSM depictions often associated with Dominance and submission represent but one possible element of a D/s relationship. There is no doubt that BDSM scene play to one degree or another makes up a part of many D/s relationships. And bondage, the captivity and immobilization of the submissive for the pleasure of one or both, certainly can play a role. But this physical captivity is merely symbolic of something far deeper in my experience. It is acting out the bond felt deeply within. The level of sexuality and the amount and degree of kink is but a visible manifestation of what I consider to be a necessary and foundational element of a D/s relationship the emotional and spiritual connection between Dominant and submissive.
From my perspective and that of my Muse, it is the emotional, almost elemental bond that we feel between us that drives my need to be Dominant and her need to be submissive. Guidance, respect and service are our primary stock in trade. They take on many forms, many completely non-sexual in nature. The constant D/s interplay that exists between us extends to all facets of life and thus finds its way into our intimate and sexual lives as well.
But kinky sex and BDSM scene play are not our reason for being as a couple. Our D/s bond is something that we need. And I do mean that it is a need, not a desire. At some very core level we need what we receive from one another. We fill a hole within each other that has always been there and that no other relationship has ever noticed, let alone touched or fulfilled. Our invisible chains are phsychological and emotional and extend far beyond wrists and ankles to our hearts and spirits. We willfully and willingly chain ourselves to each other and in so doing have never felt so free.
If Dominance is an act of setting someone free, and submission is an act of willfully devoting oneself to another, then who is the captor and who is the captive? A leash after all has two ends, both of which must be held. Ultimately, Dominant and submissive are bound to one another not by chains but by their own need, and the mutual fulfillment of those needs. We do for one another what no one else can or will. We are here by choice and by choice we stay. And in that choosing, we are set free to be our most authentic selves.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Image Credit Unknown
There are many ways to make someone feel cherished, loved, protected, yes… owned. Some may involve ‘leather and chains’. But a lot of the time, and certainly in public, little things mean the most.
A quietly whispered ‘no’ when picking an outfit in a store, a hand on a shoulder in a restaurant, how about a quick approving nod across a room. Clearly a hand can wander, an arm may squeeze that little bit tighter, fingers twisting or tugging a lock of hair. Simple things.
Not every sub wears a collar, not every Dom has a whip hanging from their belt. D/s can be expressed in the smallest of tokens, gestures, movements, Between a Dom and a sub the raising of an eyebrow can be enough, mean more than a lengthy conversation.
Someone might hold their partner that little bit tighter than necessary, perhaps let that finger linger on bare skin just a little bit longer, that hand a slightly firmer hold, signifying perhaps just a little bit more than usual.
One finger in the right spot, just a thumb rubbing gently perhaps, causing goosebumps inside and out. Barely noticeable for an outsider, but for those to whom it matters a simple sign that says ‘you’re mine’.
Little things. So very important.
M. / Her Liege
The importance of patience as a fundamental trait of Dominance very well stated as always by her liege.
~ For The Love of a Submissive
What are we waiting for?
Pages are filled with thoughts on how we D types make subs wait until they realise the waiting is not for something that happens next, or not……
But what if that sub, sitting in that corner, is not waiting for something. What if that sub is waiting for someone.
Someone with patience. The patience to win her trust, of course. But more importantly, the patience to create a space for that sub, a safe space, a place she will perhaps one day call home.
And how about someone with the patience to wait until the sub is good and ready to show herself, turn around if you like and reveal her innermost feelings, list her needs and desires.
It is terrifying for some. And for some it might take years until they feel ready to give someone access to the depths of their heart and soul.
Now in all our Domlyness we might think we can demand these things from someone, claim their complete surrender, expect their total openness, because after all, they are our sub. Right? Well….. no.
Because, let’s face it, that sub, hiding herself in the corner, may find it difficult to just turn around and pour her heart out. Or perhaps her life so far has not exactly been about open and honest communications about her deepest feeling. Perhaps she has never talked about these things before. So why would we expect her to turn around and be an expert at it? Because we say so?
Much is said about the patience a sub may need to exercise. But before we get there, a Dom may need to practice a lot more patience still and put in the work to prove himself worthy and lure that sub out of that corner. Nobody ever said Domination wasn’t hard work.
However, it might pay off a thousandfold. Suppose we sit, talk, explore, slowly, carefully, not demanding, simply creating a framework, empty pages, empty spaces for the sub to fill if and when she feels the need.
Suppose we realise that with all this waiting, we have started off on our own journey and our sub has taken the hand we offered. Suppose that sub slowly but surely turns around and starts filling those pages and spaces with everything her heart and soul and mind have to offer.
Can there be greater reward? It’s worth working and waiting for. All we have to do then is make sure that the sub feels the same way.
M./ Her Liege
Bill Brandt. Nude, Campden Hill, London. 1947.
The Gift of Dominance
Having just returned from a prolonged absence I was greeted by a very intriguing question from a follower that put me immediately in the mindset to write again for my blog. The question involves whether Dominance is a “gift” to a submissive, what Dominance actually is, and which comes first, submission or Dominance? The question follows:
"So I’ve heard a lot of people talk about submission being a gift, given not taken. But it begs the question.. What is dominance? Is it a gift as well? And at what point.. before or after her ‘gift’? There is so much talk about her ‘gift’ and not a peep about his. The net effect of which is a bunch of guys expecting women to drop at their feet and hand over the keys to their soul. It would seem to me his gift must come first to provide the environment in which she can submit. Am I crazy?"
The questioner is not crazy, and I tend to agree. To a submissive, the right form of Dominance is indeed a priceless and precious gift received. But trying to ferret out which comes first, the Dominance or the submission is really a chicken and egg task. As with any relationship, the melding of a Dominant and a submissive is the coming together of two equal but opposite attractive forces and it happens over time.
My personal approach to Dominance strives to create an environment that allows a submissive to discover and become her most submissive self. In that regard it could be said that I give the “gift” of Dominance before ever receiving the “gift” of her submission. But I have to have some inkling that submission is there to be had in the first place. For me, it is a bit like cultivating a garden. Fertile ground is sought and tilled, seeds are sewn, watered and nurtured. Weeds are pulled. But like any garden, one never knows what is actually going to successfully grow and in what abundance until harvest time many forces conspire to make a seemingly successful planting fail.
My Muse and I met here on Tumblr and corresponded about everything two distant pen pals might discuss, only we also tended to talk about D/s from time to time. From our conversations, I knew my Muse had some inkling that she could be submissive but had no personal experience to decide whether she actually was, or even wanted to be. Indeed, her daily life was characterized by being strongly dominant within her household. I suppose you could say that my first “gift” as a Dominant was to provide a level of trust and comfort to talk about things that had never been shared with another person before. Eventually that lead to a willingness to explore new ideas, and try new things. Ultimately, it lead to our meeting in person and experiencing first hand much of what we had discussed. But it was a process of mutual discovery for both of us and it took time.
In my opinion, a person cannot truly explore their submissive needs and act on them until someone comes along who provides an atmosphere of unshakeable trust gives a sense of absolute comfort and acceptance of their thoughts, desires and body acts in a respectable and honorable manner is communicative, intuitive, and empathic and has mastered control of their own life to the extent that a submissive would want to share in the experience of that control.
So that opinion leads to a list of traits that I believe make for a good and successful Dominant and in combination make up the “gift” of their Dominance to a submissive. How this list might be applied can take on many shapes and forms and indeed is as variable as the people who make up D/s relationships. But there are some core values that I think make for a good and successful Dominant. These Dominant “gifts” (that I consider to be necessary personal traits) in no particular order include but are not limited to:
** Control over their own life self-control, self-discipline and personal success serving as an example for a submissive to respect and live by
** Honesty and integrity in all aspects of life leading to unshakable trust
** Despite dominant tendencies, consistently displays kindness, caring and compassion for others who have nothing to offer them
** Understands themselves and their own needs and desires and has a clear vision of how to achieve them
** Strong sense of intuition and empathy with what a submissive is thinking and feeling
** Emotional, physical and intellectual strength while remaining open, accessible and respectful
** Creates an atmosphere of absolute safety and security
** Sufficient life experience, knowledge and wisdom to be a mentor and teacher
** Consistent exertion of will over, and for the benefit and well being of, a submissive and the relationship
** Demand for nothing less than the best effort in all a submissive does
** Use of a submissive as a brush and canvas to quench their darkest desires
** Communicates and maintains well defined boundaries regarding accepted behavior
** Has the courage to be honest even when the reaction will be negative
** Dedicates themselves to studying the craft of BDSM and makes the D/s relationship a priority in life
** Enjoys leadership and thrives on being the one in control
** Makes their submissive feel valued, treasured, needed and absolutely accepted
** Provides and promotes disciplined behavior and thinking
** Readily communicates precisely what needs doing in order to be the best for them and satisfy all of their needs, sexually and otherwise
** Has an equal or greater level of concern for the needs of a submissive as their own and acts consistently to meet them
** Relishes pushing sensual and sexual boundaries, taking a submissive to new levels and greater heights of sensation and experience
** Inquisitive enough to want to understand the needs and boundaries of a submissive
** Unflinching respect for boundaries and limits without question or concern for personal safety
** Interests, boundaries and limits that are largely compatible with their submissive
** A desire to be in a D/s relationship every bit as much as the submissive
I am quite certain there are other traits that make up the “gift” of Dominance to a submissive and it is certainly my experience that a Dominant must consistently display these and other traits to a would be submissive before “the keys to their soul” are ever handed over.
In my own relationship with my Muse, I needed to display a consistent adherence to these traits before she came to an awareness that she felt the need to submit to me. Perhaps most importantly, I must continually and consistently live by these traits in order to maintain the relationship of Dominance and submission that we share. The moment I fail to do so is the moment our relationship begins to crumble. Therefor, I do not view my Muse’s submission so much as a “gift” as something that has to be continually worked for and earned. My personal traits are who I am but perhaps my greatest “gift” to my Muse is the intensity with which I devote myself to our relationship. My Muse, as a person, may be a gift to me from my higher power, but her submission is something I have to work for day after day for as long as I hope to hold it.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Image Credit Unknown
Wearing the Bonds Loosely
Mainstream self-help literature is filled with advice on setting goals and achieving them. If one simply sets the right goals and methodically strives to bring them to fruition, so say the peddlers of worldly advice, one will achieve happiness and have a contented and fulfilled life. After years of chasing dreams, and most always achieving them, I have found that a life predicated on achievement as a condition of happiness is a futile and never ending endeavor. There is always another goal, another achievement something, well…more. And a life spent wanting more is a life left wanting. It can only end with, “if only.” Chasing dreams of the future leaves us restless and discontent in the present, and besides, we humans are notoriously poor at predicting what will make us happy in the future.
So I raise this bit of philosophy because it applies equally to D/s relationships as it does to life in general. Many Doms and subs spend their days and nights striving to achieve something more to make their relationship just so the perfect bondage, the perfectly controlled orgasm, perfect protocols, perfect challenges, perfect corrections, perfect poise, perfect devotion. If I had a dollar for every time I have heard, “If I only had a collar…” I would be retired now.
Dominance and submission, in my personal experience, is not a set of goals to be achieved or conquests to make. The Dom with the most subs does not win. The submissive with the most collars has completely missed the boat. We are not trophies and conquests to be collected and traded. D/s to me is about our relations with another person or persons. Power exchange is not a pathway to a perfect union, it is a destination all its own.
One of the many great ironies that I have come to appreciate about Dominance and submission is that, while a power exchange may have the outward appearance of a firm grip by a Dom and fighting the reins by a submissive, ultimately it is about letting go. The most successful power exchange relationships I have experienced and observed are achieved when both Dominant and submissive let go of ego, let go of self, let go of expectations, and simply surrender themselves to the give and take that is D/s. I liken it to diving into a sea of trust with no life jacket or perhaps even the ability to swim. An internal knowing that all will be ok, similar to the trust of an unquestioning belief in a higher power or spiritual ever after.
This is hard to do, I grant you. Complete trust in another human being is difficult to achieve, especially after a lifetime of little and large broken trusts. But if you live in the moment and trust that the future will be taken care of in the best possible manner and is not within your control, then the present will be far more rewarding. My Muse and I strive for this, but we have our moments of trying to wrest back control, determine our fate, plan and predict our future. It doesn’t always flow.
But rather than setting goals for ourselves such as a timeline for a permanent collar, or an expectation that one or the other or both of us will reorganize our lives so that we can be together more, on bended knee we gaze deeply into one another’s eyes to find that sea of trust. We know that in this moment we are doing the best we can for each other and that there is nothing but devotion and love between us. The joy is in the knowing…in this moment. The future will take care of itself.
So on a practical level, in a BDSM scene or other power exchange manifestation, the joy is in the moment. When my Muse kneels for me, hands held loosely behind her back, I rarely rush to make something happen. The joy is in this perfect moment of surrender and devotion. There can be no more perfect union. Why hasten to something else? The silent communication between us of surrender and acceptance, desire and devotion, says more of trust and unity than most anything we could physically do together. People have sex all the time. How many people kneel for another, not because they are made to, but because they need to? It is truly something special. No need for bondage or floggers, whips and orgasms, challenges or service. The perfect power exchange can be found in the hearts and minds of the trusting and devoted Dominant and submissive.
The Bible counsels to be “in the world, not of it.” The Tao te Ching says, “A skillful traveler has no fixed plans and is not intent upon arriving.” Twelve-Step programs encourage their members to “Wear the world like a loose garment.” And nearly all of the world’s spiritual traditions urge the concept of “living without attachment.”
All of these references are founded in the principle of letting go letting go of ego, self, and expectations. When we submit, truly submit, we are letting go in a way that places trust for our emotional selves, our well being, our future, and our safety in the hands of another. Similarly, Dominance in its highest forms, is a truly selfless act that involves complete immersion into the needs, safety and well-being of another. This can only happen when we let go and simply “be” immersed in and completely there for one another. This cannot happen when we hold expectations of people and the future. Wearing our bonds and bondage “like a loose garment” is the only way to completely feel the power, majesty, love, devotion, and yes even peace, that can be had when two people come together in a consensual and loving power exchange.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Image © Alisa Verner
"Perhaps the greatest freedom of all is the freedom of choosing not to be free."
~ For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Ownership - A State of Heart and Mind
"Mine!" I growl.
"Yours," she mews.
These two simple words passing between my Muse and I represent a feeling of attachment and devotion so profound as to nearly defy description. My Muse gives herself to me heart, mind, body and spirit. There is little she would not do for me. She is “Mine” in every sense of the word and yet I do not own her. She is not chattel property that I could purchase, sell, or give away. We do not have a Master/slave relationship in which she desires to be highly objectified or treated as a piece of property. She is a free-willed and independent person who has made a conscious decision to give herself to me unreservedly. I cannot “own” her because she could retract her position of being “Mine” at any time. And yet, there is no debate or argument that my Muse is indeed, in every sense of the word, “Mine.”
So how does that work?
Free will exercised freely is a remarkably powerful thing. When individuals or even entire societies make a decision to adopt a set of beliefs or standard of living, they will fight for and defend those values quite literally to the death. Witness eons of humans defending and battling to preserve their chosen way or life, religious beliefs or other social values. A person who has invested themselves in their core values will practice them and defend them from all comers.
But humans also have the capacity to be manipulated and controlled, sometimes by force. Societies that live under repression and aggression rarely endure. Sure, they may seemingly succeed for as long as the oppressive power remains effective and intact, but at the first signs of weakness, the first crack in the armor, repressed people will rise up and seek their own freedom and adoption of their own values. So it is with a D/s relationship in my experience. No one can force ownership.
I “own” my Muse not because I have subjugated her to the role of property. She is not my slave. No force or oppression to be found here. I “own” my Muse because she has come to know me, respect me, trust me, and appreciates how she feels about herself when she is around me. I have worked to earn her devotion and continue to do so every day. The result is that my Muse, of her own free will, has made a decision that she wants to be Mine and in so doing be “owned” by no one but me. But since she is not physical property, this ownership is a state of mind and heart, a feeling, a belief structure, a set of values that exist between us.
I liken the values inherent in a positive and healthy D/s relationship to the notion of respect and self-respect that we maintain with people around us throughout life. Respect is not a thing. It cannot be bought, sold, rented, or gifted to someone else. It is something we earn and must continue earning through our words, deeds, and values. The devotion and sense of “ownership” my Muse and I share in a D/s context is the result of a conscious and well thought out decision that has evolved over time. She did not just approach me and say, “I am yours.” That level of devotion, like trust, or respect, or even love, takes time to be earned and even more time to prove that it is enduring.
The business I see here online of “submissives” holding themselves out to any “Dom” that comes along with statements like “take me I am yours to do with as you please” is about as disingenuous and naive as the opposing statements by so-called “Doms” ordering total strangers to kneel before them and “take it.” This is not how it works at all, and while it might make for entertaining fantasy online role playing has no place in the real world of interpersonal relationships.
D/s is first and foremost a construct for two (or more) people to relate to one another in a set of values and perhaps protocols that establishes a consensual power exchange between equals. My Muse is “Mine” because I want her to be, but more important and ultimately revokable, because she has decided that she is. It is often said that a Dominant wants to be needed and that a submissive needs to be wanted. My Muse and I fulfill those wants and needs for one another and by both implicit and explicit agreement have devoted ourselves solely to each other. She is “Mine” but by the same token I am hers. It is a conscious decision of the mind and an irresistible draw of the heart.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Image Credit Unknown
Submissive Traits - Service
As a Dominant, I take a view of D/s as being something far deeper and emotionally grounded than simply having kinky sex with a committed partner. By the same token I cannot say that I carry it to the extreme of being a spiritual experience as some perceive it, though there are deep emotions involved to be sure. On balance, D/s for me is a construct for relating deeply with another person in a manner in which I am most comfortable.
First and foremost I was raised in an environment where women were treated as equals, were to be respected, and where men demonstrated chivalrous traits and gentlemanly qualities. Doors were opened, chairs were held, coats offered or taken, flowers given, notes written, and sentiments of appreciation and endearment offered. Domestic duties were shared among partners. And while there were clear lines of responsibility that may have followed somewhat traditional (some might say old fashioned) lines, the women in my life were strong-willed, opinionated and often got their way. By the same token, the men in my life were strong, educated, hard-working, well-respected and kind. It was not idyllic but it was an upbringing firmly rooted in respect for the strengths of one another.
So against that backdrop come I with my desire, no actually innate need, to be Dominant in a relationship. And this perhaps explains a little about how I came to adopt the particular brand of Dominance that I practice. You see, I do not view Dominance so much as something to be achieved but rather a natural state of being that requires a certain work ethic to maintain and perfect. I do not try to be dominant it just seems to happen, though I always strive to be better at it. Similarly, I do not force my Muse to kneel, she just needs to do so and always strives to perfect her craft. Because I was raised in an environment where men behaved as gentlemen and acted in a chivalrous manner, I naturally adopted some of those traits for myself. My brand of Dominance therefor stems from striving to be a person worthy of being followed. What Dominance I possess comes from being respected rather than being forceful, aggressive or manipulative. Submission as it exists in my relationship is a high form of respect from an equal, not a state of being reduced to something lower or less than.
So clearly I am not the product of a misogynistic upbringing, indeed quite the opposite. There is no hatred or degradation of women where I come from. But there were some clear demarcations between the roles of the sexes to be sure. And that was not a negative thing at all. It was a place where differences in the sexes were celebrated and used to greatest advantage, not something to be stamped out in an effort at sameness. Difference is not synonymous with inequality.
But despite rather traditional roles among the sexes in my upbringing there was equal effort by all. No one was sitting around expecting to be waited on or to be served. Everyone just did what they do best to contribute to the effort, as I believe it should be. So with this in mind, as a Dominant I do not take the approach that I expect to be waited on hand and foot. Yet a D/s relationship demands certain protocols and expectations that are laid out between partners. I like to be served and yet in truth I am equally of service to my Muse, just in different ways. But I think it is important to understand that being served is not the same as sitting around barking orders like, “Bring me my beer, rub my feet and blow me.” As a Dominant I am but a vessel for my submissive’s inate desire to be of service, and I achieve that by being worthy of being served.
In my experience a submissive has a strong need to please and be pleasing and to serve the One they have deemed worthy of their submission. Service is indeed a bedrock expression of submissiveness. When life conspires to interfere with my Muse’s ability to serve and be her most pleasing and attentive self she actually begins to feel unworthy of my dominance and becomes her own worst critic. She also recognizes that when she is less than attentive or is “slacking” as she puts it, that it hurts me in some way that is difficult to define and thus it hurts her. Under these circumstances, not only do we miss one another and the duties of our bond, but a piece of ourselves is actually missing too. Such is the interdependence of a Dominant and submissive.
Dominance in its highest forms is an intense commitment to a relationship and to a submissive. A submissive recognizes and appreciates this commitment on the part of her Dominant and strives to be equally devoted. A submissive’s attentiveness, devotion and obedience manifests itself in service always striving to please and be pleasing to the Dominant who devotes themselves utterly and completely to their submissive. Much like the men and women in my upbringing, no one is working harder than the other. It is a shared responsibility. The effort may look different between Dom and sub, and indeed on the surface it may appear as though the submissive is making all the effort while the Dominant sits back and appreciates it. But a closer examination will reveal that it takes more than giving orders with authority to achieve what my Muse and I have.
Few moments pass when I am not thinking of my Muse and how I can do more to be a better and more competent Dominant for her. Like teachers, where only a fraction of their overall effort is evident in the classroom, a Dominant puts in considerable mental and practical effort “off hours” to make the experience of the submissive all that it can be. We do this to be worthy of submission, to guide and lead our submissive to a place where they are most happy and fulfilled, and of course to reap the rewards of that submission both physically and emotionally.
A submissive serves not only because they have an internal need to do so but also because someone has finally come along who is worthy of that service and knows how to receive it gracefully, appreciatively and without fear of it being abused or taken for granted. Indeed it is given to the One who will challenge the submissive to do even more in a way that actually encourages them to do so. Few submissives I know would kneel on aching knees for prolonged periods patiently and eagerly awaiting the next wish or command of just anyone. Yet most submissives I know would do so tirelessly for the Dominant who has won them over, heart, mind, body and spirit.
It kills me when I see so-called “Doms” bluster about, commanding “submissives” they do not even know. Even the most submissive among us would not kneel and serve a stranger just because that stranger told them to do so (unless of course the order came from their Dominant…but that is another story). Service, even if it is performed on someone else, is ultimately given to the Dominant who has earned the submission and given the direction. But this is straying into an entirely different topic, that of a submissive being shared with others by their Dominant, something that I personally have no interest in doing.
Service being offered and given by a submissive is an act of devotion and love. It fulfills a need within the submissive that has often been missing from prior relationships where service was either not expected or where it had a tendency to be abused. A Dominant serves as the vessel into which this need to serve can be poured endlessly and indeed challenged further. Anything that interferes with this ability to serve and be of service leaves the submissive feeling unworthy, unfulfilled or both. Ironically, the Dominant, by acting as this vessel for the receipt of service is in fact performing a service of their own and it is the effort of being worthy of such service that makes being a Dominant so challenging and rewarding.
Service by a submissive comes in many forms and need not always be overtly sexual, domestic, or otherwise obedient. Simply being present, devoted and attentive is a service all its own, and perhaps the most prized and valued of all.
Caption © For The Love of a Submissive, 2013
Image Credit Unknown