Saturday, July 24, 2010

Thoughts on Orders vs. Inspiration

I am very much into obedient submissives. If I have to fight you to get you to submit, I'm not going to bother. I am not here to fight your inner battles for you.

Lots of dominants are like this, it's not surprising. But I recently realized that I'm not even that big of a fan of giving orders.

Stay with me here. I know you're wondering how there can be obedience without giving orders - after all, obedience implies there's something there to obey. And it's not that I don't have preferences, or that I don't have expectations. It's just the orders themselves that often fall by the wayside.

I *could* beat myself up about this and think of myself as a bad dominant, but I don't think that's what it is. I think it's that I'd rather inspire a submissive to want to do things, instead of just tell them to do them.

I would rather discuss with my boy why it would be a good thing for him to go to the gym twice a week, than simply tell him to do so. I would rather tell him that I enjoy his service, and then reward him when he does it, than to simply boss him around.

Sure, if I want something specific, I will give an order; but it's usually very small things that I do this for. "Fetch my shoes", "refill my glass", things like that. Anything bigger and I would rather open a dialogue about it and find whatever seed it is in a submissive that wants to do whatever I'm after, and draw it out.

Admittedly this entire concept mostly applies to boys and girls and submissives - I do not know if I would take this same approach with a slave, not having yet owned one. I suspect with a slave I would be more likely to give direct orders.

I have owned a girl before, but she was definitely a submissive and not a slave; it might be confusing as to how one can 'own' someone who is not a slave, but it worked for us... I suppose when I think about it I have a similar relationship with my boy, though the words "ownership" or "owned" have never been thrown around, "belongs" and "belonging" and "mine" have been.

The line between "24/7 D/s" and "slavery" is often a little blurry, I suppose.

At any rate, back on subject, most of this does come back to my dislike of "force". I am a very strong believer in autonomy and consent, and while I am perfectly aware that "forced" rarely actually means overriding someone's autonomy, it still makes me a little edgy. I think maybe this is why it might be different with a slave who has agreed to a consensual-non-consent arrangement; the consent has been given in advance, for an explicit period of time. This is differing from my other D/s relationships I have had, where even though I might be the boss, the autonomy and consent of my submissive is not a blanket statement at any point.

I do want to add a slave to my life sometime in the near future; I know it will be difficult to find the slave that is the right fit with me and my family, but I'm sure they're out there somewhere.


  1. Orders, rules and commands often seem to be the clearest ways a D/s relationship can manifest itself.

    Communication and clarity are what allow these elements to exist.

    “Make me a cup of tea” – This is a command that has no clarity because to the reader (You and I) there is no context to shape it. Even in an established relationship without a clear subtext there is nothing but confusion as to how to properly make this cup of tea. Time and clear communication reduce the specificity of a command until you no longer need a command. One day you might simply have a cup of tea brought to you wherein your sub has anticipated your need.

    It would be unfair to be punitive if a Dominant's command was ambiguous.
    (Although there is some wiggle room here)

    I’ve always liked the Rule of 3
    In a command both people should know – What was asked – What standard will its completeness be weighed against – What will the effect of completion or non-compliance be.

    I feel that a good Dominant is a Teacher not a Jail guard

    In this the teacher has the most power as you can teach someone to see the consequences and understand your perspective.
    Until hopefully their desire to please you will come from within without your constant supervision. Teaching is an ongoing process and this makes far more sense in a deep D/s relationship. A relationship of orders and restrictions to shape behaviour seems shallow with both the D and s type learning little.

    Having said this validation is paramount. Although a submissive should be responsible for their own submission the presumption that the s-type can continue to submit without direction or validation is a fallacy. They may as well as submit to a lamp as to the dominant.

    Submission is something that is given to a Dominant for them to use. The physicality of their submission is something to be moulded. At the risk of using an inappropriate quote
    Michelangelo said of sculpting that

    “Every block of stone has a statue inside it and it is the task of the sculptor to discover it”

    Submission in this metaphor is the stone. But it needs to be a solid thing, and its substance is what an s-type must bring to the D/s relationship. But what interests me in this quote is that although submission is something the Dominant can mould there is still a form unique to that piece of stone. The sculptor cannot create qualities that are not already within the stone. Submission is the material or gift that a submissive brings to the dynamic.

    (Okay that was quite vague but the beginnings of a concept)

  2. As for ownership

    Ownership is a nebulous concept that (I think) we often restrict based on almost primitive notions of chattel. There are levels of ownership and so to in being owned. An object we bought is owned differently from an object we created.

    I think a sense of ownership can be a state specific to D/s without the necessity to compare it to the purely binary states of ownership we find in real life. It’s possible that this is a limitation in the way we understand something to be ours. Even less understood notion of how we feel about being property. Although this is a very human concept, even to be classified is to create a type of ownership (Giving power to the classifier that the classified does not have).

    I think a sense of belonging is tied intimately to our sense of ownership and property (as soon as I find the verb for to be owned I’ll start using it) .

    Often this is where I find discussions of consent to be most interesting. I see people who talk of their D/s relationships as if they had no ability to leave. Or that they were owned completely because of a contract.

    For millions of years people (and animals) have shown how easy it is to own something without its consent. It feels almost meaningless in its absurdity. As if simply taking something implies any real power beyond the ability to apply restrictions. If this is our standard of ownership then it feels limiting in that the object cannot grow beyond how you found it.

    To have someone’s heart and mind is true power. But you can’t have that without their consent or understanding.

    And now the disclaimer to everything I just said. It’s obviously all opinion and I can think of situations that could contradict these ideas. Please forgive me these are just prototype suggestions and have not had the time or rigour to be condensed into something more concrete. I always just hope to give ideas and movement to thought.

    Also sorry for clogging your comments up with strange opinions

  3. Please, don't apologise, I'm glad to be able to offer a space to think out loud!