April 4, 2010

First You Learn Then...

The proverbial cart before the horse applies to the BDSM community. These two go together like bears to honey. People seem to get everything mixed up when they first find this way of life. This post will help to clarify things.

Learn. Learn. Learn

Few seem willing to take the time to learn what the hell this way of life is all about. Instead, they believe because they woke up one day believing they were dominant or submissive, this is the life for them. For many, this is true. However, as regular readers of this blog know, there are many different facets to this way of life. Also, none of us are born with the inherent instincts to be a good Master or slave. Everything that pertains to this way of life requires education, study and practice. It takes dedication to be successful in BDSM.

The foundation of BDSM is a relationship. We are involved with another person(s) to some degree. Hence, basic interpersonal skills are the first requirement. What is sad is that many, if they had any to start, seem to lose these skills once finding BDSM. Common sense characteristics go right out the window. What was once a fairly smart and logical person suddenly because a gullible fool apt to be used by anyone who comes along. This is something I suggest you avoid.

A way to counteract much of what happens, is to educate yourself about this way of life. The simple truth is that much of what we are into is radically different from what the mainstream teaches us. We are into a lifestyle that celebrates power division to the point where a total exchange of power can occur. Naturally, this is far removed from the idea of equality that the vanilla world espouses. Also, we have a terminology and protocol which again is separate from what we grew up with.

Therefore, education is the only proper route to take. Those who seek knowledge by reading and studying are the ones who are going to succeed. Unfortunately, this is the minority of people that I encounter.

Rush Into A Relationship

If you want a sense of how people acted during the Gold Rush in the 1800s, simply look at any BDSM chatroom. You will see people who were in this lifestyle under a week suddenly with their true "One". The submission process takes all of about 5 minutes from start to finish. These people have no idea what the hell is going on yet they are suddenly involved in a full-blown BDSM relationship. Of course, like the Florida weather, if you do not like something, wait an hour and it will change. These relationships end up cracking since there is no foundation with either party.

Resist the temptation to rush into a relationship with anyone in the BDSM community, especially online. The reason for this is simple: a new person cannot distinguish between someone who is knowledgeable and speaking from experience compared to someone who is spitting out stuff he or she read on a website. The pretenders (or fakes) are large in number. Knowing the difference is a skill that is imperative. The only way I know to prepare for these people is to arm yourself with knowledge. Again, this is done by reading and interacting with those in the know.

The Submission Process

In my best-selling book, An Owned Life, I laid out the process in which submission ought to take place. This was developed from watching hundreds of relationships go awry because people "put the cart before the horse". The ideas that I am sharing here follow the same pattern. There is a path to success if one is willing to follow it.

Submission is something that is exciting and natural for those who are designed for it. At the same time, those who are dominant are fulfilled by accepting this from another. However, as you can imagine, the idea of accepting one's submission simply because it is offered is ludicrous. So is offering it to any Tom, Dick, or Harry who comes along. There are certain things that one should look for in another before entering in a BDSM relationship.

The lifestyle has a lot to offer. There are many who committed to this way of life because they did the internal reflecting necessary to arrive at a life-changing conclusion. Most, unfortunately, are not willing to go through this effort. For that reason, we seem to have many "fly by night" people who are here to test the waters out. They get into a BDSM relationship to see if they will like it. Wrong. That is a recipe for certain disaster.

Before anything else can happen, one must be willing to commit to this way of life. Reversing the process is akin to deciding to forgo heterosexuality since your first relationship did not work out. Most fail in their first relationship yet remain true to their sexual preference. The same exists within the BDSM world. One must be true to the lifestyle before committing (through the giving or acceptance of submission) to another. It is logical although something that is commonly lacking.

Your Challenge

Your challenge is to learn as much as you can about the many facets of the BDSM world. After a reasonable amount of study, you should have the ability to interact with people on a knowledgeable level. Believe me when I tell you that it does not take a great deal of knowledge to separate yourself from the pack. Most are playing games in ways which just fulfill fantasies. This is not what BDSM is all about. Certainly, we engage in a sexual element that makes most jealous. However, there is a much deeper level that most seek out. If you are one who truly wants this, I hypothesize that you fit into this category.

I put together my social site as a mean of bringing together people who are serious about this way of life. I suggest you visit it and become active in some of the different forums and blogs posts. There are groups set up which cover some of the facets of this way of life. Join them to start expanding your mindset. Getting involved in the sharing of knowledge is an effective way of approaching this lifestyle. Those of us who are around the block a while are perfectly willing to share our experience with those who truly seek to learn. Is that you?

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