As usual we've had some great posts here recently. If you haven't read either of Tymber's or Cassandra's recent blog then I suggest you do so, they're great. Both of them made me think and my blog today stems from what's been said. For most of us involved in the lifestyle, BDSM is an ongoing journey and today I thought I'd share a little bit about the road I've travelled.
I've been on my journey for nearly half a century. *shudder* I just turned forty-seven; yep the terrifying fifty is on its way. No shades of grey jokes please, I couldn't cope...lol. I assume some of you are wondering why I class my childhood years as part of my journey. I do it firstly, because we are all who we are because of the whole experience of our lives not just the adult portion. My childhood also played a part in my concept of Dominance and submission, although it was flawed in many ways.
Looking back I recognize the power exchange in the family for what it was…a D/s one. My family was the traditional, father, mother and two kids. My parents stayed together until death, never divorced, my father was the head of the house, and my mother submitted to his authority. Yes she could participate in the discussion about what to do or disagree with his decisions but ultimately his word was law. That sounds very D/s to me I hear you say. Well in many ways it was but mum's submission stemmed from her religious beliefs of 'wives obeying their husband', not living a BDSM lifestyle. The flawed part of the household came with my father's dominance. He was not the Dom we read about in romance novels. He was sadistic, cruel and abusive to his children behind closed doors and the perfect loving father when in public. In my teenage years I rebelled, not only to my father's authority, but to all authority. I decided I would not be controlled by anyone, would not do as I was told and damn anyone who tried to make me behave. I like to think of my teenage years as practicing to be the perfect brat. Thinking back, the lesson I learned about submission from childhood was sometimes rebelling is what you have to do in order to find yourself.
Once I reached my early twenties I discovered something interesting about myself. I still had the get fucked attitude when it came to being told what to do in most areas, but I found that when it came to sex and men I wanted a take charge kind of guy in the bedroom. I lost all urge to say no way and instead turned into a submissive creature that wanted only to please and obey. I loved being tied up, unable to resist (not that I wanted to) and the first time someone bent me over their knee and spanked my cheeky ass I thought I'd gone to heaven. For a while I lead a double life. I'm sure my friends believed I never had sex, never dated, and didn't want a relationship because I kept my sex life and my 'real' life totally seperate. I worked as an advocate for women and children that were victims of abuse, yet in my personal live I was engaging in all sorts of kinky activities in secret and choosing to be dominated. Not abused, there's a clear distinction, but I knew that at the time friends and family wouldn't see it that way. It took a lot of research, reading and meeting different people on the fringe of society before I realized what BDSM and Dominance and submission actually was. It took more to finally accepted that I was a submissive. That period in my life taught me that it's okay to be submissive if that's your choice.
Like all new and exciting information we try to incorporate into our lives I spent my late twenties and thirties in pendulum mode until I finally found a balance. I'm embarrassed to say I did fall into the doormat role for a while, until I learned that being submissive didn't mean being a doormat. Where was Cassandra's post when I needed it? Lol. I did meet abusive men pretending to be dominants and ran like the wind once I realized what they were. Thankfully, I eventually became comfortable with my submissive side and with that I also became more open about my lifestyle and what I liked about it. I learned that I offered my submission to someone in a mutual exchange of power and that my submission should be valued as a gift and respected by the Dominant I chose to share it with.
By the time I met Shane - my partner, lover, friend and Dom - I knew who I was. I had a firm grasp on exactly what being a submissive was and I wasn't letting go. I believed I had finally arrived and knew exactly how the D/s thing worked. For the first time in my life I entered into a D/s relationship knowing exactly what I wanted and negotiated terms of how Shane and I would live that benefited both of us and met both our needs. Of course reality is never as perfect as you think it will be, but for the large part of our time together and our relationship worked and was a loving one. When Shane experienced some minor health issues the D/s dynamic changed somewhat. We had always enjoyed an open relationship and played with other Doms and subs on a casual basis but eventually Shane decided that in order for me to have all my needs catered to we needed to find a Dom, outside of the relationship, to meet those needs on a regular basis. I still submitted to Shane, he remained my Dom in everyday life and in overseeing the play I engaged in and with who. I was beginning to learn that being a submissive, I could offer my submission to different people under different circumstances in varying ways.
The last lesson I learned about submission while I was with Shane was a tough one. I learned submission is never easy and you may have to fight for it. When Shane was diagnosed with terminal cancer and told that, without treatment, he had eight weeks to live, my world turned upside down. We discussed everything from his funeral, to whether to accept treatment options offered by doctors, to what I should do once he was gone. After much discussion he made the final decision on what would happen. Shane declined all treatment options except pain relief and asked that when he was too ill to advocate for himself I would ensure doctors and family abided by his decision. Responding to him was the hardest 'Yes Sir' I've ever had to say. In the following eight weeks I didn't fit any preconceived behaviors of a sub that you might see, imagine or read about, but then I'm not a stereotype, I'm a real life sub. As such, I did what my Dom asked. I made sure his wishes were adhered to. I fought with doctors over medication, refused their requests to try and get Shane to change his mind about treatment, I stood up to his family when I needed to, I organized his funeral exactly as he wanted it, I made sure everything Shane wanted happened and I hated every damn minute of doing it.
Then why did you do it?
Because as a submissive I choose. I had chosen to give my submission to Shane and entered into an agreement with him many years before he became ill. As his submissive, I chose to honor our agreement until the end.
So that's my journey so far, I've learned a lot and I'm sure I'll learn more before I'm finished. Being a submissive is all about choice. Sometimes the choice to submit is easy, other times it's the hardest thing to do in your life...but it's still a choice.