January 20, 2014

Transitioning to D/s... (Part 2)

Thanks for all the comments on my last post.  It's great to have your thoughts and be able to read your own experiences from both sides of this...starting out with D/s in the relationship versus trying to transition an existing relationship.

The following is part of a message I got from a nice lady.  Her and her husband are trying to transition into D/s and bring this dynamic into their existing marriage.  I thought this was a good example of some of the very problems that can face couples trying to move into this.  Especially when they are having to feel their way along, and neither has experience to be able to help move things along.  I commend her for reaching out for help to try to find answers to assist them in their journey.

My husband and I have embraced a D/s relationship. We are on the beginning of this journey.
I find that when we are engaged in a scene I get "lost" and forget our rules. This has happened a few times and we did have a conversation about it, but have really not come up with a solution. I feel like I'm a terrible sub. I was the one who initiated this journey and can't even seem to follow the simplest of rules. My husband has been making a great effort to embrace this role.  
I don't think it's proper for me to tell him what to do (topping from the bottom?)

So what now?

My answer was as follows:

Thanks for the message. I understand your issue and think this is fairly common for those that are new to this. Especially those that have been together a while and are trying to make the transition from where your relationship has always been and into a D/s dynamic. That can be a difficult move at times. I believe that the two of you knowing this is an issue and seeing it is the first step. You can't fix a problem or make a correction when you don't see the issue to begin with. So good for you two for seeing this as an issue and wanting to correct it. In theory it's a fairly easy fix...in practice maybe more difficult. But certainly with some time and consistent attention to it it can be corrected.
Basically you both have to re-wire your thinking and how you do your relationship. You both say you want this, but then in reality you aren't fulfilling your roles. You want to submit, but then you don't and break the rules. He wants to Dom, but then doesn't and allows you to break the rules. He has to step up and take charge when you break the rules, and not let you get by with breaking them. He has to call you out on it and hold you accountable. You need to set up a system where there are consequences for breaking the rules...one that you agree to go by and he agrees to follow through with. You are only breaking the rules because you can get away with it. He also has to step up and put you in your place when you do get out of line. Over time this will reinforce his position for him and that you will submit to him and go by the rules you two have agreed upon. It will also reinforce your place as his sub for you, knowing you have to follow the rules or there are consequences, and that he will be consistent in following through with holding you accountable for your actions.
So I think it's a combination of both of you that have to take action to correct this. It won't happen overnight, but will eventually sink in for each of you. It takes time to move from what you have always done and how you've always been for each other, to be this new person for each other and have this new dynamic. It takes each of you staying the course and being consistent, even when it gets hard or you don't feel like doing it. Eventually you will both feel your place and it will become more natural.
This couple is obviously struggling in trying to get their feet under them and make this work.  From the sound of it, they both want it to work, but figuring out how can be difficult.  I will re-affirm that I think it's wonderful they see there is an issue and are willing to reach out for advise.  So many people would just flounder around on their own, so that's a huge first step.  
I personally do not see her trying to give him her input as topping from the bottom.  At this point, she can't expect him to know everything to do, and when she sees aspects of their relationship and dynamic that she feels needs to be addressed, then she should do just that.  As stated in the last post, communication is everything.  They have to be able to talk these things through and each give their thoughts and input.  They have to be open to listening to each other to try to make this work.  I have always been a proponent of receiving my subs input, thoughts and views.  I want to know how she feels and what she thinks.  By getting this from her it helps me be and do better in my Dominance of her.  Yet, it doesn't mean she is topping from the bottom...only helping us both learn and grow in what we have to make our relationship and dynamic stronger.

One thing we should all keep in mind when considering all of this...there is no right or wrong way to do this.  So please don't get hung up on thinking it has to go a certain way, or be done step by step in some way.  None of that matters.  All you have to do is what works for you and your partner.  Figure out the parts and pieces you like and want and leave the rest out.  Some may say they have no idea what they want or how to do this.  Well you know what...don't take it too seriously, especially in the beginning.  This is supposed to be fun and what makes you happy.  So have fun with it.  Have fun learning and exploring together.  Enjoy the ride and the journey in doing and learning this with someone you care about and want to be with you in this.  The technicalities of whether it's Dom/sub, Master/Slave, whether you're doing it right, whether you are Dom and or sub enough, that all ultimately doesn't matter one bit.  Just do what you like and try to make it work the way that is best for you.  Exploring, learning and experimenting...that's half the fun.  
I'm sure there are aspects of this I have left out in response to her, so feel free to add your thoughts by commenting.  Of course, your own experiences and views on this are always welcome.


  1. That feeling of "topping from the bottom" is a hard one to overcome. In our experience, when I felt that way, we would get into a Dom/sub position (me kneeling or over his knee during a spanking) and have these conversations. It allowed me to offer suggestions in things he could do to improve without either of us feeling like I was "topping". Pre D/s, I was the one who ran things so it was important for us to retain our new roles during any discussion. We've found that kneeling can be a powerful tool in our communication.

    I would also like to commend her for reaching out for help. The single thing that helped us the most was having a mentor, someone who had been in this lifestyle much longer than we had and could offer sound advice and even kick me in the ass when I needed it. I wish them the best of luck. It is hard work, but is so worth it if they can persevere.


  2. DV...what a great topic! As you very well know I am on this same journey. After almost 20 years of marriage I am living this post. It's not easy...we have had a lot of struggles and still continue to have them.

    It's amazing when it works but the downside is so painful and hard to get through. If I could say anything at all it would be 1) communication, which I am horrible at and 2) consistency. If you don't have those 2 things it seems like the rest doesn't work.

    I think it's great that she reached out and is asking for help. I also feel like she does...sometimes it feels like I'm topping from the bottom and feel like it's defeating the purpose. I understand that I have an input or say so, but I also feel like if he is really on board and wants to do this then he will find a way. He will do what he has to do to make it happen, not rely on my to tell him how it should go. It's a lot of work and if you BOTH aren't willing to put in the work then you are fighting an uphill battle.

    On a positive side....when you both are firing on all cylinders and are both on the same page, both seem to want the same things....WOW it is such a beautiful and rewarding journey. I think you gave her amazing advice and I really like this post.

  3. DV,

    I completely agree with His Sibrina's last sentence regarding your advice being excellent!

    "there is no right or wrong way to do this. So please don't get hung up on thinking it has to go a certain way"

    This single sentence says so much that it should be read again... Everyone's journey will be different and it is important for couples to make it their own!

    "Enjoy the ride and the journey in doing and learning this with someone you care about and want to be with you in this."

    I often say that it is not about the destination, it is the journey!

    Kindest regards,

    Mr Fox

  4. DV I first want to thank you for all you wisdom and advice in these posts and all your others. I always learn something. We have been living a Dd relationship for over two years but married over 25 years and are continuing that journey Into a D/s couple.

    It has not always been smooth but I think the fact that we have been patient with each other has helped us immensely. I do much more reading and research than him and he is much more visual (your tumblr blog is his favorite) and together we have managed to meet in the middle and take our marriage in a whole new direction.

    I agree that communication is so key. You need to be open and honest and talk like you never have before. It is real work but the closeness that you get back as a reward is so worth it.

    I have sometimes wondered if this would have been easier if we had started this way but at least for us I don't think so. The level of trust that is needed is enormous and whatever else our issues were in our marriage I always trusted him and so we started with that base. I also think our maturity helped us. We needed to grow into ourselves to be able to accept this part of ourselves if that makes sense.

    Anyway, great piece. Obviously very thought provoking. Thanks!

  5. I am so glad that you wrote about this I too am living it. I asked my husband a couple of months ago to start walking this path, I needed something, he was out of work I was the only one working and I felt like everything was on my shoulders. I had been restless for about two years wanting to explore more, okay I have to admit It started with reading the ever popular and controversial series that got many people thinking....? I have always known that certain things turned me on and wanted more and I read many books and blogs since that time so I knew a lot about the ups and downs that I could face. I even went as far as start to fantasize about going outside my marriage which is a horrible breach of my values but I was really dying inside.
    Anyway to bring my rambles to an end. We have been trying, he has been trying, it was uncomfortable at first but he seems to have embraced some of it. Where we lack is the rules. He does not want to set rules and likes to play games with what he does or what he asks me to do. I want to have agreements, so that I know where the lines are but he is not there yet. I also can relate to not wanting to tell him all of the moves. I do not have an interest in being dominant and want to feel like I am submitting to him not asking for what I want. I also sometimes think he does this only because I asked him to and not because he likes it. I am insecure in this being something we are doing together.