September 29, 2014

Commitment To This Way Of Life

I wrote about this subject before yet it requires some revisiting for the newer readers.  This is one of the most important aspects of the BDSM world and one that is crucial for an individual to enjoy long-term success.   Too many overlook this basic concept without realizing how fatal it is.

In my book, An Owned Life, I mentioned the 3 step submission process.  This is something that I identified as a way to avoid putting the proverbial cart before the horse.  The first step in this process is to commit to this way of life.  Too many want to get involved before making a decision.  This is incorrect.  Your decision to become a part of and live the BDSM way of life is determined by what is within you.  It is your core that reveals whether you belong here or elsewhere.  Those who have strong characteristics deep within themselves of either domination or submission will not find fulfillment anywhere else.  Obviously, this is a path many of us took before finding BDSM which only led to failure, unhappiness, and a lack of fulfillment.

The problem I see is too many want to treat BDSM as if they are looking for a car or trying on a new dress.  There seems to be a portion of people who approach BDSM with the idea it is something to try out before moving forward.  Certainly, few are truly certain this is for them upon finding the lifestyle.  However, as you can guess, the level of success one has is usually in proportion to the commitment level to start.  Those who treat BDSM as a passing fancy are quick to leave when things get difficult.

Over the years I spoke with many who encountered this crossroad.  The truth is there will be times when being committed to BDSM is rather difficult.  We all know the games that are played by so many, especially online.  This has the tendency to wear on even the strongest amongst us.  Nevertheless, only the committed are willing to pick up the pieces and try again.  Success is usually a result of perseverance.  Also, a BDSM relationship is still a relationship and the fact that one is experiencing failure in this area might be an indication of something deeper going on.  Hence, instead of "leaving" this way of life, it might be prudent to look within and see what is really going on.  Perhaps some personal work is required for a specific time period before re-entering the fray.  Hence, we find the best option is usually to step back and take some time away from the BDSM pursuit.  Usually people encounter the crossroads after the breakup of a BDSM relationship.  Most therapist will state that, after the ending of a relationship, it is best to heal before entering another one.  Many fail to do this.

The bottom line is that people seem to expect things to magically work out or they are moving on.  BDSM is not this way.  As mentioned, we deal with relationships which take time, effort, and commitment.  There are no shortcuts in this area.  Also, being true to ourselves often means facing things we would rather not look at.  Oftentimes the problem is not "them" but us.  This is a difficult pill to swallow.  Remember, when one person says it, it is an opinion.  However, when multiple people draw the same conclusion, it becomes consensus.  Sometimes personal evaluation is required.

Another aspect that arises which is worthy of mentioning is that we look at the world through our own eyes.  What this means is that everything is our perspective.  The problem with this idea is that we are not necessarily correct even though we might think so.  One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter.  It is our perspective yet we place immense value in it.  The truth is how we view ourselves is most often different from how others view us.  We tend to project our fears, insecurities, and negative aspects while minimizing the good things within us.  Others have the ability, often, to see past that and get a much clearer image of what we truly are.  I do not know the number of good slaves I encountered over the years who failed to see their worth.  In short, their fears and low esteem destroyed them.

So what happens when one encounters a situation where he or she is questioning what this way of life is all about and where he/she fits in?  The answer simply goes back to the aforementioned commitment level.  Those who realize that BDSM is the way of life for them will ultimately move forward.  This might require stepping back for a time but the individual knows his or her place.  Being true to one's core is vitally important.  However, the individual who lacks this commitment is going to believe the answer lies elsewhere.  In this instance, we see the individual leave the lifestyle believing some other avenue provides us the proper path.  Of course, this usually means vanilla.  Personal experience led me down this same route and created the biggest train wreck of my life.  In other words, my commitment level was not where it needed to be while I operated under a false belief (that I could find fulfillment in a vanilla relationship).

Therefore, before you go any further, I suggest you check your commitment level as it pertains to BDSM.  Is this something that you are just trying out to "see if it works"?  Are you dedicated to succeeding in this way of life no matter what b.s. you encounter?  Do you believe the problems you are encountering reside within this lifestyle or is it something else?  The answers to these questions will determine what path you take.

The reason why I write this post is because I do not believe most people end up in BDSM by mistake.  Yes, there are those who were attracted by 50 Shades and this is a passing fancy.  However, for most, there was something deeper which drew them in.  These are the individuals who I am directing this post at.  These are the ones who buy into the false belief that elsewhere holds the key to their fulfillment.  In most instances, it does not.  Ultimately, they realize, after more suffering, that BDSM was where they belonged.  Again, I speak from personal experience on this one.

Therefore, check your commitment level when considering the thoughts about leaving BDSM behind.  Trust me when I tell you, whatever you are encountering/dealing with exists in the traditional world also.  Being committed is what enables us to overcome the obstacles in our path.  This is true not only for BDSM but all of life.  Hence, the solution is not to throw in the towel when things get difficult but, rather, further the resolve for success.

Remember, success oftentimes is just on the other side of failure.


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