Long before I knew what submission was, I was already seeking (subconsciously) to submit…to find someone worthy of submitting to. Though I didn’t really know this was my objective on a conscious level, I have years of evidence…years of being drawn to “not quite the right” powerful men…trying all types from arrogant to quietly strong and from kind to cruel…always on the look out for the just right mix of strength and benevolence. The kind of power that need not announce or prove itself. I looked for someone to take care of me, protect me, bend me and mold me sexually…even hurt me (in the right ways).
When I first realized that “submissive” might be the name for what I was, I tried to wear the term like a new wardrobe, proudly displaying and talking up the merits of my new fabrics and textures. And when I first realized that “dominant” might be the name for the type of man I needed (and had in my husband), I researched and worried the list of labels as if simply plastering a title on us would solve everything. What kind of submissive was I? What kind of dominant did I need? And was he that? When I found definitions that seemed to fit, I would push and prod and manipulate to try and live up to the expectations of those labels, as I understood them. But, it was unsustainable, obviously.
I folded myself into shapes and bent myself in ways unnatural and destructive to my soul. Worse…I did the same to him. I told him I wanted him to lead and then refused to let him…really…have total control.
I topped from the bottom, as they say.
I dug my heels in and resisted my own nature (and denied his), out of fear of the unknown and unwillingness to accept my own (and his) needs as natural and complete just the way they were…nameless and fluid and evolving.
The biggest problem is that I sought to wear the labels of others in my desperation to understand and define my needs (and his) through the only language I had rather than simply making up my own…our own.
We dabbled for too little time…devised hasty rules…created a contract based on someone else’s…and failed. We tried again…and again…and failed. Expectedly.
I’ve written about submission several times before on this site and my prior site “The Lustful Literate.” This post describes our journey pretty well and includes links to other posts I’ve written on the subject. So, I’m not going to backtrack or rehash what has already been done. Instead, I’m going to write about where I am with my understanding at the present moment.
What I’ve come to see is that while I am submissive, I am not necessarily a submissive. It is an aspect of who I am, but it is not what I am. In fact, I’m a terrible “submissive.” I forget rules and break them because I’m pouty or simply not in the mood. I struggle against boundaries and expectations, becoming angry and feeling persecuted and childish when punished.
What I find now is that I do not need a contract or rules to be submissive. I do not need a collar to be owned. These are things I once believed were necessary to be part of a club I so desperately thought I wanted to be a part of. I thought wearing that identity would somehow solve my problems or improve my relationship. I thought it would complete my identity, as if my identity were somehow lacking and insufficient as it was. I was also convinced it would make him happy.
But it didn’t. No surprise. In fact, forcing myself to be something that I’m not only broke things more completely between my husband and I. It simply provide one more way for me to fail him.
But, we continually evolve as we learn more about ourselves as individuals and as a we work together as partners in a relationship.
My submission is something deeply ingrained in my sexual identity. I feel unstable and awkward in positions of sexual power. I am not a seductress. I can admit that I lack sexual self-confidence, but that is not the reason I am terrible at seduction. To me, it is like a violin trying to play the violinist. For the violin, it would be unnatural…impossible, actually. But, the violin yearns to be seen and played by the right musician. And for the right musician, the instrument will make beautiful music. The thing is, even though the violin is capable of sending out high-quality sound, and even though the musician is capable of creating a genius composition, without the right one of each coming together, the perfect song will not exist.
I see myself as that violin. I’ve been played by several, but the song had never quite been right, until my husband touched my chords.
And while my submissive style doesn’t always work…even for him, I am coming to terms with the fact that my submission is messy and not always cooperative, but it is still me and a part of me that cannot be denied or ignored if I am to be happy or complete.
My sexual style is all caught up in a need for romance and sensuality and rapture and ecstasy. I love to be pursued and pampered, to have the control taken out of my hands, to not have to think about anything other than enjoying the act of sex and everything involved in getting there. It might be easy to say I only want this because I’m lazy…and I don’t want to put in the work of really being a good active submissive, seeking ways to delight and appease my Dom. I’m not lazy, and though I can be self-centered sexually, I would agree that I am indeed NOT a good active submissive. Submissiveness is just my dominant sexual quality.
Sex, for me, is spiritual and bone deep…something to expand the mind and heart and lose one’s self in. Submission is the same. It is not a role I play. It is, rather, the essence of my sexual identity, and, as such, the defining ingredient of my sexual style.