I have been preparing to teach a class at subCON this weekend in NYC. The great thing about teaching any subject is that you are forced to refine your thinking about what you are teaching and explore the topic much more deeply than you would otherwise. That has been the case when I taught government, when I taught leadership, and now when I teach about submission.
I am teaching “Deepening Your Submission.” This class is designed to take the participants through a series of exercises and then send them home with more suggested work so that they can discover how to deepen their own submission. To teach this, I had to unpack what has brought me to this point in my kink and D/s and what I want to do more of.
I started with the basic question, “Why do I submit?” It is a question I frequently get from people who don’t have a natural inclination to submit. To many (probably most) people it seems very odd that I would do what I do sexually and in a relationship. What the untrained outside observer sees is me getting hit for fun, me getting lit on fire, me kneeling at someone’s feet and calling them Sir. If you don’t have a predilection for submission, this can seem downright unbalanced.
For me, the joy comes from much of what is unseen. It is the power exchange I enjoy the most in D/s and kink. It is my decision to give over my power to someone else, to stay committed to that decision in light of what might otherwise seem humiliating, painful or degrading, and see them get great pleasure out of the power exchange.
When it comes to kink and sex acts. yes impact can (and often does) hurt. However, I have an odd physical response in that I get exceedingly turned on with specific types of pain. I have had a Dom joke that with the right set of nipple clamps I could solve the California drought. So, while there is pain, there is also pleasure.
Submission is counter to cultural training.
I feel grounded and connected when I submit. Like many masochists, pain in play makes me feel more centered and balanced when I am done. There are plenty of us who engage in intense scenes because it leaves our head more clear and our hearts more centered.
Submission is counter to cultural training. We are supposed to have plans, have set steps for the future, take control of our lives, our emotions, our finances, our families and pretty much everything. Submission requires letting go of that control. It requires trusting that you will be okay, that you will be protected, and that you will get what you need.
The practice is actually pretty good training to deal with life. You can’t control everything. You actually control very little of your world. Learning to let go, to be present, and to accept things (within bounds) even when you are not calling the shots prepares you for adult life in the way nothing else does.
Ultimately, lessons learned through long term submission make me (and others) better humans. We can be more flexible, more trusting, more accepting of the unknown.
That is why I submit.