Dominant/submissive sexual relationships, also referred to as D/s relationships, fall under the umbrella of BDSM (bondage and discipline, dominance and submission, sadism and masochism). In a D/s relationship, one person generally dominates while the other takes on a submissive role. While everyone who is attracted to this particular type of relationship has their own motivation, the most common is that they find the power dynamic to be sexy and exciting.
Vive la différence!
Sexual dominance and submission looks different to everyone. For some couples, this exchange of power may involve the submissive partner serving the dominant partner in some way, sexually or otherwise. Other times, it might involve the dominant partner restraining the submissive partner, giving them orders, taking control of them sexually or even punishing them in some way. Many D/s couples use power-based roleplays such as a teacher and a student, a boss and a secretary, or a master and a servant.
The key is that everything that happens in a D/s relationship must be consensual, and within clearly set and discussed boundaries.
It’s true that some people take their power play beyond the bedroom and engage in a D/s relationship in everyday life. However, for many people, the D/s dynamic applies only in intimate settings.
Sexual submissives aren’t doormats
While some people outside the D/s dynamic mistakenly think that sexually submissive people have an inferiority complex or low self-esteem, the reality is many fully independent people with a strong sense of self enjoy being sexually submissive in a more intimate setting, simply because it’s nice to give up control and let someone else set the tone every now and then.
Being sexually submissive not only requires you to give control to your partner, it also means you have to establish a high level of trust in each other. Before engaging in power play in the bedroom, it’s important that you and your partner discuss what you’re comfortable with and what’s off limits. Sure, the whole point of being sexually submissive is to put yourself at the mercy of your dominant partner, but you do have control over the boundaries you set and the actions to which you consent.
Keep it safe
Of course, an element of surprise is always exciting, so it’s a good idea to come up with a safe word, which is something you or your partner can say, at any time during a sexual encounter, to let the other know that they should stop whatever it is they’re doing. You can safely test each other’s limits and keep the scene unpredictable, while giving both of you a fast and simple escape route.
When you and your partner discuss boundaries, you should discuss whether you want to confine your D/s dynamic to the bedroom or whether you’re comfortable with other situations. No matter where you enjoy your D/s relationship, remember to be open in communication and diligent with consent.