Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Shades of Grey

A thread on Fetlife caught my attention.

A dominant asked the following question:

“Is it unrealistic to expect my pet to live in a black and white world with no shades of grey?”

The responses overwhelmingly said that the dominant was indeed being unrealistic. Examples were given, people opined, and the majority said that while the dominant is certainly entitled to his expectations, having such unbending ones would likely result in his inability to maintain any sort of long term relationship with a submissive.

Rules are indeed rules. Expressed expected behavior and the performance of those expected behaviors is the foundation for any D/s relationship. But what happens when the bar is set so high that it’s impossible for a submissive to reach it?

Daddy has a favorite saying: “it’s not your fault, but I blame you anyway”. That phrase, in the context of that post makes a lot of sense. Blame doesn’t necessarily mean that punishment will follow, just that the expectations which he set, and I agreed to, couldn’t be met. The reason why may not be my fault, but the blame is mine. The punishment may also be mine, but I don't really have to worry about that. You see, I chose someone who shared MY style of D/s. Someone who remembers that D/s is about people. His full response is here:

If you and your submissive have different attitudes (black & white vs gray), it's not likely you'll be together for long.

In my experience, a D/s relationship, especially a 24/7 one, is really two relationships. There is the meta- or outer relationship in which the D and the s are equals discuss the content of the inner relationship. The inner relationship is where the actual D/s takes place. At various times you'll have to step back into the outer relationship, assess, and recalibrate.

If you're not agreeing about black & white rules in the outer relationship, it's certainly not going to get done in the inner relationship.

Here's an example. Early on I told my girlfriend that she was not allowed to wear a bra. Some time later, talking to a friend, she mentioned my rule and added, "That's OK. When I get older, I can use my boobs as kneepads."

Now, I could get all domly and tell her not to talk to her friends about my rules (fat chance) or to investigate breast surgery to keep her tits perky (fatter chance). I could stand my ground and insist that she keep the rule, because, you know, I made it, and I'm the domly one, and I can't be wrong.

Or I can step back into the outer relationship and say, "Hey, you know that no bra rule. It sure seemed like a good idea at the time...."

If you're new to the lifestyle, it can sure be exciting. A pet girl! Collars! Blowjobs on demand! But you know, there are human beings at both ends of that blowjob. Humans need to be flexible.

However, when we discussed this thread, I had an opinion of my own. He posted it on that thread because, well frankly....I hate getting into pissing contests with domleh doms ::wink::

Here's my take:

If you told me to call you at 3:15 every day, I would say that I would do my best, but because I am working, it may not be possible. However, if you were to insist that I put my call to you ahead of my job, this is what I'd say:

I will call you at 3:15 no matter what. But if I lose my job because of it, I expect that you will support me and take care of any losses relating to it. If you're going to require that kind of obedience, you have to be responsible for the consequences of that obedience.

And there's the shades of grey that many (and I'd venture to say most online d/s practitioners) forget. Yes, you can make a rule. And yes...I'll do my utmost to keep to the rule. But I'm not the only one who must pay the consequences for the fallout of the rule...otherwise known as the blame.

Grey sounds a whole lot better now I bet, huh?

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