When you first learned about submission or BDSM you may have felt a sense of coming home, of finally understanding what wasn't sitting right for you. But along with that relief come questions. You thought you knew who you were, and now you've been thrown into a new world and you don't know who you are at all. In those first few moments, weeks or months it's likely you did a lot of reading, exploring the internet and chatting online with others interested in similar things. It's a lot to take in.

You may start adopting things you heard all submissives do, desperately try to find any Dominant to "train" you because you heard you must have a Dominant and you want one RIGHT NOW. It's possible that you may have stopped seeing your other friends and withdrawn from your life when you feel that a kink life is the one for you.

And you can lose sight of yourself.

As novices, we often forget that our lives are made up of many parts and that we work harmoniously when we embrace all of them. Of course, it's common to become a single note when we are excited to finally have a name (BDSM, BDSM, BDSM) to what we've craved. But we are also friends, family, co-workers, coffee enthusiasts, runners, soccer coaches, knitters and more. We are not just one part of ourselves.

When I started learning about BDSM and embraced submission I became completely obsessed with everything to do with it, from the activities to websites, to persons engaged in it. I couldn't talk about anything else! I completely alienated my friends and spent hours online reading and printing off essays that I loved and felt a connection with. I talked with a ton of people in chat rooms and explored what I thought I might enjoy. I desperately needed to get perspective.

If I was going to be a part of the whole BDSM world I needed to learn to embrace the whole of me and not just the one new, shiny part of it. And that's where I had a wake-up call. I needed to relearn to be me.

In order to re-embrace yourself in all your parts, it's always best to take stock in what you already know. For myself, I knew I was a pretty lazy friend, decent cook, loved crafting, social butterfly and a bit obsessed with learning. And now I was submissive and kinky. That had to fit in there without it overwhelming the other parts of me.

My genuine, real self was in there and when I embraced the whole of me again I was able to coexist with the world.

Now you read this and you probably think it's all a bunch of hooey. But then again, you may connect with what I have to say about my experience. The most important point I'd like to make is that even though the world if full of information and that you feel finally alive when you discover BDSM and its many facets that you can't lose yourself in it. You have to make it a part of you, not let it define you.

What does being genuine really mean? It means not putting on a fake persona, of not pretending to be someone you aren't and in the case of newfound BDSM awareness, of not adopting everything you hear a submissive should or shouldn't be doing just because someone said it somewhere.

For example, you read somewhere online that all submissives kneel. So you get frustrated that you can't kneel for more than a few minutes at a time. Then you hop onto the forums and ask how to increase the amount of time you can kneel, only to find out that kneeling (for time periods) isn't as common as you thought.  Defeated you disappear to do more reading on third person speech and un/capitalized pronouns. Only to find out when you have questions about those, that the same thing applies.

What I'm getting at here, is that you don't have to try to follow the trends, and the trends aren't all-encompassing. Be aware that single submissives are responsible for themselves and ones in relationships follow whatever rules they have mutually agreed with their Dominants. No two relationships are the same. You have no need to try to do and be everything all at once. Be patient.

Just be yourself. Don't do anything that isn't directly asked of you by your Dominant (and don't accept just any old Dominant). Be picky about who you date and partner with, use your common sense about things and overall be yourself. Make that mental decision to really listen to what your mind is telling you to adopt and who to date - don't follow the crowd if it doesn't work for you, and remember that you are more than the kink you've just discovered!

Thoughts to Ponder

  • Are you a new submissive or brand new to BDSM? How do you feel with all the information being presented to you?
  • Take a step back today and really think about how genuine you are with others. Do you try to mimic what you think a submissive should be or are you being real, genuine and yourself?
  • Where can being overly obsessed with BDSM information go wrong?

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