October 2, 2010

What Are You Offering?

The dating world is nothing more than a marketing contest. Everyone who enters into this arena is forced to create and present an image that he or she wants others to view. The ultimate goal is to find a 'buyer' for the wares you are offering. We advertise ourselves by filling out profiles, posting flattering pics, and engaging in stimulating and awe-inspiring conversation so as to 'wow' the other person.

Relationships Are Transactions

Few ever think of relationships in these terms especially romantic ones. Whenever love is involved with a situation, people want to elevate the status of that interaction. How many times have we heard the justification "because I love her" to substantiate otherwise insane behavior? We tolerate action from 'loved' ones that we would never accept from others. In the end, love acts as a blinding agent.

Nevertheless, a relationship is a meeting of two minds into a transaction where both parties agree to buy what the other is selling. It is a simple barter system. Each is trading what he/she has so as to get what the other is offering. This is not different from the Indians trading Manhattan Island for $16 worth of trinkets. One offers something up and the other accepts.

The factor that gets the individuals to this point is marketing. Each person consciously decides what he or she is offering. We see this in the fact that people exercise to improve the 'package' that is seen. In essence, we want to look better when 'sitting on the shelf'. Perhaps one engages in some personal development to acquire improved interactive skills to be able to converse at a higher level. And finally, financial resources are flaunted in an effort to garner the attention of another since many of us predicate decisions of this manner on this factor.

BDSM Adds Another Layer

BDSM simply adds another layer to this concept. At the core, we are dealing with a relationship, thus many of the same concepts just mentioned apply. However, we also need to consider what we are offering to others when we start on this path. I see so many who want to approach this life in a manner that is contrary to this point.

I often tell people to question one about the experience he or she has with this lifestyle. The reasons for this are many. One simply benefit of this practice is that one who is experienced will be able to offer more than someone who is new. The presumption is that person learned something while in the lifestyle and his/her skills will be greater. This person statistically will have more to offer in a relationship at the beginning that someone who is newer. Of course, this is not to say that someone should not get involved with a new person. The point is that there is no substitution for experience.

Adding to that thought, an important dynamic to consider is the skill level of the person you are dealing with (and yourself). What is this person offering and vice versa? Does he/she have the ability to serve as a Master/Mistress? Are the makings of a slave there or is this a person who might be playing games? These are all questions one needs to consider.

Another area to ponder is in the area of accessories. Does this person have an assortment of 'toys' that will be used on a regular basis? Did he/she build a dungeon in the garage? If so, this is a person who will standout from the average person and, I would think, increase his/her level of attractiveness to someone who really likes pain. Also, does the person have the knowledge of how to safely use the accessories on another?

Relationships: A Two-Way Street

All this encompasses the idea of knowing what one is offering. Contrary to what many wannabes believe, a BDSM relationship is a two-way street. I see so many, especially newer dominants, who only consider what they are getting. They do not take the time to consider what they are providing the other person. The 'privilege of serving me' is not something that I believe will hold another person's attention for too long. In fact, I have yet to meet a person who is so great that others should be happy just in the fact that this Dom/Master is gracing him/her with the pleasuring of serving. Even submissive types need to know they are receiving something from a relationship or else they will not serve too long.

The other day I wrote about a dominate person having his or her house in order before trying to take control of another person's life. This is common sense to me but one that many overlook. How can someone who is jobless, homeless, moneyless, and riding the city bus expect to properly lead someone else? I would say that this person might want to develop his/her own skills before involving with another person.

Consider this when you are interacting with another. What is this person truly offering? And, resist the temptation to degrade what you are worthy of. Even if you are submissive, that does not mean you are not worth having someone who has the best to offer. Of course, your level of success will probably be in proportion to what you are offering. Thus, the place to start your search is in developing your own skillset. The more you have to offer, the wider your options. This is true in all aspects of life. BDSM is no different.

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