I was having a talk with SubG not that long ago and we started discussing submissive intentions when it comes to serving. It came up again when I was talking with my friend A, who is a female sub who I posed the question to and she had some pretty profound changes that resulted from examining her own intentions. So I got thinking, why haven’t I written about this before when it’s one of the most important questions you should be asking yourself if you’re submissive?
What do I mean when I say submissive intent? Basically it’s your reason for submitting in the first place and very few subs really look at it with their self-awareness microscope the way they should be, if at all. But let’s face it, who wants to take a deep look at themselves and the reason why they behave the way they do? Answer: Not many. Whether we’re focused on BDSM or any other human behavior, taking the time to examine the reasons why we participate in or enjoy the things we do will make many of us uncomfortable, usually because the reasons stem from something negative that we don’t want to revisit or accept.
When it comes to BDSM and submissive behavior I can’t think of a more important question to ask yourself or to ask your subs, “Why are you doing this?” And the answer may shock you when you look at it, IF you’re willing to look deep inside yourself.
I’ll use A for an example, one because what she went through was profound and changed the course of her submission significantly and two because she said I could. LOL!
When I posed the question to her, “what is your submissive intent, why are doing this?” it took her by surprise because it’s not a question that she was ever asked nor had she asked herself. In the moment it’s hard to come up with something but when she was quiet and really got to thinking about it she realized that her intent wasn’t what it should be.
“A” had issues dealing with the death of her father at an early age. She felt that she had failed him and “let him die.” When we drilled down she realized that this was in fact, a false memory that had become a false belief. (Remember, what are beliefs? They are thoughts we think over and over until we BELIEVE them. It doesn’t make them factual. And memories are never factual because they can become distorted by your beliefs and viewpoint.)
When she took a good look at the answer to that question she realized that she had spent her entire life punishing herself for something that had been completely out of her control, even to the point where it influenced her career choice by choosing to work in healthcare her entire life. Her father had been feeling unwell but had never told her because she was a child, he didn’t want her worrying. Unfortunately his lack of verbalizing that he was unwell led to a fatal heart attack that she chose to blame herself for because she was just a child. She felt that had she known she could have helped him.
So once she gave it more thought she realized that for decades she chose to punish herself in many different ways including through her submission. She felt she had failed him and that she “deserved it,” as A put it, and when she realized that she actually didn’t fail him at all, that she had just chosen to view it that way, her submission changed almost to the point of dissolving. She became more empowered and now chooses to submit only when she feels submissive as opposed to thinking this was what she SHOULD or “deserved” to be doing to herself which will only make the times she chooses to submit more meaningful for her now that she can see the difference.
Another quick story I’ll share with you on intent comes from a client I had years ago who had issues dealing with his grandfather’s death. Notice a trend here? People going home as I call it, tend to trigger our insecurities and can obviously create issues if we aren’t ready to deal with their departure from the physical realm.
This gentleman started out calling me because he wanted me to dominate him by telling him I thought he deserved kill himself because he was worthless. As you can imagine I pulled the plug on that as soon as the words left his mouth for a variety of reasons. But we did get to talking about why he felt the way he did which was how I found out that he felt responsible for his grandfather’s death because he wasn’t there when he died and he cherished his grandfather. He felt he had failed him because he had been elsewhere instead of at his grandfather’s side at the time of his death.
This shows you that once you peel the layers off and look at your intentions behind your submission you may find that you’re not actually submitting you’re punishing yourself under the guise of submission. You are using submission as an excuse to self-flagellate for, in many cases, things that you never even did wrong but in your head you think you did.
In this gentleman’s case he wanted to be told that he was useless and worthless to bolster his own vision of who he was. The problem is this ISN’T who you are. It’s your own perception of who you are and in many cases, it’s dead wrong. Just like A, this gentleman was punishing himself for something that was beyond his control.
Many subs I speak with are, in my opinion, doing this with the wrong intent. Although intent is personal you do still have to do some soul searching to ensure your intent isn’t to reinforce negative thoughts you have about yourself. If that’s the case, you need to do some work on you before you can offer yourself up as an effective submissive or as a submissive at all.
Negative intent as a submissive can come in many forms. Seeking professional domination because you feel unworthy to be loved thereby using your submission to gain physical intimacy. For some your childhood can have a profound influence on submissive intent. Unfortunately many parents raise their children by withholding love and attention and using it only for reward if a job was well done for example. This type of situation can obviously create feelings of unworthiness and a need to prove yourself or to endure for affection.
None of this is to say you can’t work out some of your issues through your submission but I would caution you to do some self-awareness work before you choose to use BDSM as your form of therapy. If you don’t do the introspective work and ask yourself, “Why am I submitting?” you run the risk of embedding these negative images of yourself even further which can lead to serious mental health issues in the long term.
Submission is a beautiful dance that can have a profound effect on your life in a very positive way but only if you go in to it honestly. And the person you really have to be honest with is yourself. Using BDSM to punish yourself for long held beliefs is not the way to happiness. Submission can and is, a cathartic way to balance the pressures of everyday life; a way for you to let go of negativity not add to it by using your dominant to punish you for unseen travesties you’ve allegedly committed.
If you’re submissive it would be wise to ask yourself these questions: What is my submissive intent? And why am I doing this? Because the answer just may surprise you and in many ways, set you free.