When I took my first steps into the D/s life, I was infatuated with a dominant man. This was Michael, a story not yet told, not fully. I committed myself to him, ostensibly to be his in a D/s relationship, but he rebuffed me, turning me down. What I learned painfully was that he knew I was filled with misconceptions of what D/s was. What I expected from a life with him was ill-conceived.
For one thing, I was enamored with the “alternative-ness” of D/s, how it was so different from the conventions of normal society, how it defied traditional, ordinary relationships. In a way, this was part of my attraction to Michael — his dominance and my imagined life within it seemed to me artisanal, creatively different. I had always been attracted to artists and musicians and the like, drawn to creativity of different kinds. D/s struck me in a way as a “life of art.” It was trendy and cool and prompted in me images of courtesan life in some way.
Well, nothing perhaps wrong in some of that, but in reality D/s is a daily life lived in a house. It’s not an exhibit in an art gallery.
D/s is also not a cure for the ills of your life. If you wrestle with depression outside of D/s, you will likely wrestle with depression inside a life of submission. If you struggle with certain negative habits in vanilla life, you will struggle with them in the sub life. For me, it was the matter of confusion about my sexuality. I didn’t know who or what I was. D/s promised me a way of finding myself. Michael sensed this and knew I needed to figure out some things before I entered D/s life. He decided I wasn’t ready for D/s life with him.
Certainly D/s is a life of discipline that can and will shape you in a better way. I don’t deny it might help you in certain areas of character and body and life. But it won’t undo your messes or prevent new ones. It won’t likely help you find yourself.
D/s is not BDSM. In fact, this was one thing I “got right” back then, as I realized that my brief experiences in BDSM clubs were not what I wanted and that D/s was quite separate from that. But many who explore D/s as a lifestyle make this mistake of assuming it’s a life of intense bondage experiences, a constant sexual high.
In fact, it’s not that at all. You can’t live that way for long in such intensity. BDSM is a short-term experience. D/s is a long-term life.
For me with Michael, my biggest problem was that I equated the D/s life with my romantic attraction to Michael himself. It was, if you will, my Fifty Shades moment, a love affair with a man of the world who seemed available to me through a D/s life.
Now I know there are many married couples who practice D/s, husbands and wives who love each other deeply and have crafted a meaningful power-exchange relationship. I know there are good love relationships outside of marriage that practice deep D/s. (I’m now in such a relationship with Amanda.) I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with love relationships mixing with D/s. In fact, it’s a beautiful thing.
However, in my case, Michael, being experienced and wiser, realized my entry into D/s was only through the lens of my infatuation with him. He sensed I was too casually committing to a D/s life because I was in love with him. He was right. He told me I wasn’t ready. That was the first time.
So here’s the thing I worry about for you, dear one, as for all young women who are submissive and looking. We all have a longing to live submissively. We also have a longing to be loved. That makes us vulnerable, more easily entwined with a dominant other. We might fall head over heels into a life situation not because we chose the D/s life but because we chose the romance.
This is complicated, I know. D/s is a relationship. I wish for all of us to be in D/s relationship with a dominant someone we trust and care about and love. I’m not saying otherwise. I’m just making the point that the D/s life itself is not a rosy Harlequin romance with a collar. It’s good to do a simple mind exercise: imagine yourself in the D/s life at times when you’re not so in love with your dom. Ask yourself how that would work out for you.
Michael and I broke up. That next year became a time of gaining clarity about who I was, coming to a fuller understanding of my sexuality, and going through a self reckoning regarding my deep submissiveness. It was a time of experimentation — my affair with Chandra and some other D/s experiences.
No, I didn’t magically “find myself” nor did I get everything figured out. And my post to you here is not to suggest you should have everything figured out before entering a D/s relationship. But it’s important to have some clarity of what you are and need and want and are willing to do.
That’s what I came to over the period of that year.
There was a second time. Michael reentered my life. I was then ready. He took me as his slave.