Curmudgeon

I often feel like some old curmudgeon when I see how the Youth today ‘do’ D/s and BDSM.

It makes me laugh to say that because I’m not ‘old guard’ or ‘old school’ (I don’t even really know what those entail to be honest), but I DO find myself looking at discussions and going “OMG, really?!” and then shaking my head at them and then at myself because GET THE HELL OFF MY LAWN!

And mostly, what young people are doing is Really Good Stuff. They are, for the most part, smart and thoughtful and considerate and concerned and all of that: They are super aware of consent, worried about abuse, all about negotiation and understanding the boundaries, all of that. And that’s wonderful.

But what I often read in that goes towards the level of “Well, if the submissive doesn’t want to do it, then a good dominant will understand and not make them.”

And what I have seen is that the ‘it’ in that statement extends to *everything*.

If the submissive doesn’t feel like going to that party, doesn’t feel like doing that chore, doesn’t feel like playing that way, doesn’t feel like getting up off the couch, doesn’t feel like doing what they’re told… well then, that’s perfectly fine.

I feel a bit like some old dinosaur going “That’s great kids, but *how is that submission?!*“.

I’ll just be over here in my rocking chair with a blanket over my knees, shaking my head and muttering about ‘the old days’…

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47 Comments

  1. Yes! In another place, I suggested ways of getting a reluctant boyfriend to dom his girlfriend; rather than expecting him to service top, how about encouraging him to get things he wants?

    One response was, “But then the BDSM won’t be focused on her?”

    Well no, it won’t. But I thought that was the point.

    I think too much communication and negotiation goes on, probably because subbing means giving up control, which is scary.

    1. I agree with the first point that encouraging them to get things they want is a reasonable approach if you are wanting a reluctant partner to engage, but it doesn’t work so well if ‘what they want’ is exactly what they are currently getting in their vanilla relationship already. The success of it relies on them wanting things that they have never shared before.

      “I think too much communication and negotiation goes on, probably because subbing means giving up control, which is scary.”

      Ha! And I think almost the complete opposite. I think more communication and negotiation SHOULD go on because subbing means giving up control, which is scary.

      Ferns

      1. :)
        Yes, if they are getting what they want anyway, then either that approach will fail, or, more likely, the sub is “giving it away for free”; no free blow jobs without a collar!

        Regarding the last, I suspect that’s very much a matter of erotic taste. Communication and negotiation are part of the fun for some people – the dom casts themselves in the role of fitness coach, nurturer, and initiator (in the religious sense).

        For me, being scared is part of the process of submission.

    1. More to the point, there are times that I ask to be excused from a requirement or obligation, most often when I’m in physical or emotional distress, and the takes that into account. But her answer to that request is final.

      In other words, I don’t quite understand, either.

      ::shakes cane::

        1. ha you tell him Jalan! :D..I mean wait abuse! I didn’t see him say beforehand he consented to not being able to waive a cane! *giggles*

          Respectfully,
          Mysticlez

        2. @jalan_jalan:

          “For what it’s worth, Naga has been forbidden to own a cane, or to shake one!”

          *chuckle* I’m glad to hear it… Who knows what he might do with that thing!

          Ferns

      1. “More to the point, there are times that I ask to be excused from a requirement or obligation, most often when I’m in physical or emotional distress, and the takes that into account.”

        Absolutely. I’d never suggest that someone should be expected to comply when there are valid reasons why they can’t.

        “In other words, I don’t quite understand, either.”

        Not just me then.

        I do wonder if views on this can be clearly split down generational lines.

        Ferns

  2. I figure I’ll weigh in as I’m part of the newer generation of BDSM.

    My sub’s feelings are important to me (*gasp* what a concept!) and they do weigh – heavily even – on my final decision.

    That being said, I have and will continue to make him do things he doesn’t want to, be it for my pleasure or for his own good.

    Do I let things slide sometimes? Yes and the problem is self correcting. It never doesn’t take more than me pointing out something he missed – usually he’s apologizing for missing it before I bring it up. I am gentle with him because it makes me unhappy when he’s groveling at my feet because he missed an email to me that I don’t require of him.

    This post of yours really spoke to me: http://www.domme-chronicles.com/2013/01/compromise-in-ds-relationships.html

    I’m gentle with my pet because it makes me *happy* to do so. His feelings weigh heavily on my decisions because it makes me happy to do so.

    And I think this is one of the reasons he has never said no to me. Ever. He either responds with a prompt “Yes, ma’am” or a prompt explanation of his feelings and then waits for me to respond. (Headache, busy with schoolwork, familial obligation, etc.) The latter is rare and never trivial.

    I don’t feel like I’m any less of a “good” Domme for being both hard and gentle when called for. Both my submissive and I are ridiculously happy with the arrangements, so I don’t think I’d respond well to an implied “You’re not a good Domme for making a big deal of it.”

    That’s my two cents on the subject.

    1. *smile* Thank you so much for commenting (I had to put my hearing aid in and everything!).

      Your approach sounds wonderful, balanced with care and love, and is obviously working for you both. I really appreciate you sharing how it works for you.

      I can totally relate to the ‘care’ (*gasp*) aspect, and I will learn to recognise his moods and take that into consideration in all of our interactions. It’s really no different from any vanilla couple learning when the other wants some space, a cuddle, sex etc and factoring that into how they relate in those moments.

      And I think “ridiculously happy” trumps anything, anywhere, EVER! Congratulations to you both *smile*.

      Ferns

  3. I don’t get it either, and I am one of those whippersnappers. I like doing what my partner (when I have one) tells me to do, even when it makes me uncomfortable or is inconvenient. There are limits (and I’m not just talking about BDSM “limits”). I have to put my job first. And unless I’m in a committed, looking at life-long relationship, my family is a priority. But at my core, I want to submit and not just when it’s easy.

    When I was with my ex, there were a few things she asked of me that I struggled with. I made that clear to her whenever it happened, but with patience, determination, and her reinforcing that it was what she wanted, I was usually able to do it in the end. And I tried to bottom to sutures, I really did. But when I started to feel dizzy, she stopped.

    1. “I don’t get it either, and I am one of those whippersnappers.”

      Thanks for that, youngster *creaky old smile*.

      “There are limits (and I’m not just talking about BDSM “limits”). I have to put my job first. And unless I’m in a committed, looking at life-long relationship, my family is a priority.”

      Absolutely reasonable, and of course understood before you get into the relationship.

      “But at my core, I want to submit and not just when it’s easy.”

      I think that complexity of ‘wanting what you don’t want or like’ fits in here and runs the gamut of activities. In my relationships, I’ve found this area can be one that strengthens the bond the most.

      “And I tried to bottom to sutures, I really did. But when I started to feel dizzy, she stopped.”

      Eek! Geez, good on you for trying it (really brave!!). Sutures are hardcore *cringe*!

      Ferns

  4. What perfect timing! As a newb myself, I’ve struggled with the thoughts of leniency. I wonder if I may be overbearing, and then I remember – he has submitted to Me and if I have told him to do something, he is required to do it.
    I second guess myself at times, but I also wonder if I’m too lenient. I certainly have found that I have much to learn. I wonder if it is easier to not hold your ground…much like a child may test the line and a parent will need to hold firm. I have found myself frustrated with the learning process as this is new for the both of us, but I do know that being lazy now will not bring about what either one of us want.

    1. There are so many ways of having a D/s relationship that finding your feet can be really tough when you’re new. It’s fun and challenging, but it can also be pretty hard to navigate.

      I remember when I started, I WISHED there was a ‘One True Way’ to do it. I really wanted a rule book that laid out How It Should Work, so I could Do It Right etc.

      For me, now that I know what I want, I know that ‘letting things go’ in the beginning is not going to get me there. And the submissives that I like and am compatible with HATE it when I give them a pass on living up to my expectations.

      To them, it means I don’t care, that I’m not paying attention, that it/they/the relationship is not important enough for me to bother.

      And none of that is true.

      If I second guess, I remember that, and if I’m really unsure for whatever reason, we sit down and re-affirm how we (*we*) want this relationship to work, because we’re in it together, he and I. It’s not just me throwing my energy into a void, it’s *us* working together to create this relationship that we both want.

      It sounds like you are doing great. I wish you both the best of luck with it!

      Ferns

  5. I am going to respond to this but only because I felt like it okay. I completely agree with you! I know that is a shocker to you, right? It does appear as though a lot of people take the “consent” to the extremes of “wtf is the point of submission again?!” I understand about respecting each other and caring for each other and definitely not going into abuse but I *want* to submit to the one I love, not submit when it is convenient.

    Respectfully,
    Mysticlez

    1. I actually think that *submissives’* views on this are MUCH more interesting than dominants’.

      I think part of the issue is that some people can’t conceive of the idea that submissives *want* the kind of dynamic where they are held to their dominant’s expectations regardless of whether they feel like it or not (limits/genuine issues etc notwithstanding).

      So the idea that a good dominant just says ‘if you don’t feel like it, that’s fine’ ignores the fact that different people want different things, and that response wouldn’t work for a lot of submissives (like you, and like some of those who have commented above).

      Fascinating really.

      Ferns

  6. Also, of you’re not occasionally doing stuff you *don’t* want to do, then you’re not really submitting. The dom is reduced to a kind of personal trainer who pushes your limits in permitted ways.

    1. Unless the submissive likes *everything in the world and more of that all the time* and the dominant only likes foot rubs and champagne. *laugh*

      Ferns

  7. I wonder if the people who are OK with the sub skipping things use D/s more as an occassional spice, rather than as the core of their relationship?

    For me, it is at the core of what I crave in a relationship. I cannot just “scene” to give spice to my relationship. I have tried role playing as well and I can’t do that either. They just do not do “it” for me.

    For me, it has to feel real, and for that to happen, it has to be a given that I will submit and do what she wants…

    1. “I wonder if the people who are OK with the sub skipping things use D/s more as an occassional spice, rather than as the core of their relationship?”

      It could be, though I don’t get that impression the times that I have seen it. The example I linked above was relatively typical of what I mean.

      “For me, it has to feel real, and for that to happen, it has to be a given that I will submit and do what she wants…”

      *nod* For me in my relationships, D/s is how we demonstrate love, so when it’s not working (that is, he stops submitting, or I stop dominating), it feels like the relationship is faltering.

      Ferns

  8. I think it matters what the NO is referencing. TN hates hates hates hates certain things and it would bring me no pleasure knowing how deeply miserable he really is to do it — though, I recognize he would be doing it for me. But he’s not at the place yet where pleasing me sustains him in those hateable moments. And I’m totally cool with it. It makes me benevolent to him and that goes a loooong way, too, in our power exchange. You can only be benevolent if you’re the one on top, right?

    1. “I think it matters what the NO is referencing. TN hates hates hates hates certain things and it would bring me no pleasure knowing how deeply miserable he really is to do it — though, I recognize he would be doing it for me.”

      This is totally true, yes.

      To clarify, I’m really not talking about edgy hateful things that are really difficult for a submissive. I think you are 100% right in what you said.

      My musing is really over situations where the request is something that the submissive has agreed to do, or that is part of the ‘normal’ expectations in the relationship, but this time, they just decide “Nope, I just don’t feel like it”.

      The two are very different.

      “You can only be benevolent if you’re the one on top, right?”

      *laugh* I think that’s only true if you put ‘dictator’ at the end of it…

      Ferns

  9. A group of women were being mentored by a Dominatrix at a conference. She pointed to a young man, kneeling on the floor and said “If you call him submissive, you ignore his nature. If you do not call him submissive, then you ignore his reality. Quick, now, what do you call him?”

    The women sat there for a moment. Then one walked over to the man and slapped him across the face.

    The Dominatrix mentor just nodded and smiled.

    1. Tom Tom Tom… *sigh*.

      Not only a bad joke, but one YOU’VE TOLD ON YOUR BLOG ALREADY!

      You brought me a recycled joke!

      I’ll bet you re-gift as well…

      *double sigh*

      Ferns

  10. You know, I’m not so sure it matters whether or not it’s submissive to randomly blow off commitments you’ve made. I think that would be just as uncool if a spouse did the same thing, and for the same reason: breaking promises to people who should be able to trust you is just not cool.

    Where that would relate to d/s for me is that I can’t dominate someone I can’t trust. Their insistence that they really do want this wouldn’t be worth any more than their promise that they were going to go to that party with me, so the d/s part of the relationship would pretty much be sunk.

    But people’s blase attitude towards blowing off commitments is something I just don’t understand. If a friend did that for no particular reason, I would just stop giving them any invites beyond “hey, it’s cool if you come, cool if you don’t”. And I’d consider them at most a vaguely friendly acquaintance.

    1. I agree, it’s uncool if *anyone* does it, but to your point:

      If I can’t trust my friend to do what they say they will… eh. No biggie. Do it/don’t do it, whatever.

      But if I can’t trust my *submissive* to do what they say they will, then what are we even doing?

      Ferns

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