30 Days of Submission – Day 18: Communication
Very often the stereotype of submission is that the submissive person loses the ability to have an opinion. While that clearly isn’t true except in the absolute rarest of occasions, how does communication factor into your submission and how do you communicate your desires and needs?
I’m not one to hold back on my opinion, and I’m also a very talkactive and verbose person. However much I’m submissive with my Master, it would be very difficult for me to not voice my opinion or to be told to not talk. Well, okay, if I were gagged and tied down, I might just be silent for a while!
Communication is very much part of my submission. I am expected to talk about how I feel, about my thoughts, about my needs and my fantasies. It’s quite a lovely thing, to be honest. I always had to hold back in previous relationships, or I felt I had to. It took me quite a while to feel safe enough to be open about everything with my Master. I was worried that I would be punished, invalidated or humiliated. But instead I was met with care, open-mindedness and problem solving.
A D/s relationship can only work if there is a lot of honest and open communication. We are talking about giving up control, and that needs to be followed by a sense of safety and trust. But for things to feel safe for me, I need to communicate what makes me feel safe, what makes me feel unsafe, and what is off-limits. Just as much as I want to meet my Master’s needs, he wants to meet my needs too. For that to happen, we would have to know about each other’s needs in the first place!
I know that a lot of communication is non-verbal and I love when my Master is able to read me, instead of having to ask what is going on. But I don’t think that non-verbal communication is enough. I very much appreciate the “How are you” and “What is on your mind?” throughout the day. We talk about our relationship every day, we talk about things we want to change, things we love at the moment, things we want to add and try out. I am able express my needs and opinions. And if we both consent to something, of course the details need to be discussed first.
In the bedroom, a lot of the communication during play is non-verbal, as in my reactions to certain things being done to me. I am not exactly silent or deadfishy (I think I just made up a word!) during play or during sex, so the cues are pretty strong when I like something, or when I don’t like something. The strongest tool of communication in the bedroom is the safeword for me. I don’t use it often, but when I do, I really mean it.
My Master is a very safe person to play with and the few times I used the safeword, he stopped what he was doing right away. Knowing that he respects me and follows the rules as much as I follow them, makes me feel really safe with him. During play he is also able to read the non-verbal cues, meaning that he knows when to lighten up on a certain kind of impact, pain or humiliation, just from my reactions.
I can’t imagine my submission without communication. It is key for our relationship to work. It is key to my safety and to my happiness in the relationship. Other than obedience in the areas we have agreed upon, it is what is expected of me: to communicate my needs, to talk about how I am doing, to communicate if something feels off, to express my gratitude when appropriate and to tell him when we are getting too close to my limits.