How do you get started?

A question I see a lot in groups like novices & newbies is “How do I get started? Where do I even begin?” It’s tough being a newbie dom, at least if you’re a sub you can ask your dom to tell you what they want. Assuming you even want to give your submissive rules/take control of some portion of their life, here are some ideas for you.

For starters, what do you actually like?

Don’t think about what stereotypes say you’re supposed to like, don’t think about any porn you’ve watched, don’t think about any stories you’ve read, think about what actually matters to you. Is there something that just makes you happy? It could be something as simple as your partner warming up your towel in the dryer while you’re in the shower or making sure to text you good morning and good night every day. Something small and meaningful is a great candidate for a first rule.

Alternately, is there something your partner does that just irritates the shit out of you? You could make a rule that they aren’t allowed to do that, or have to ask permission,or have to do something you especially like before they can do they annoying thing.

Either way, I recommend picking one or two things that you actually care about and starting with those. There are so many scripts out there you could follow, and the big problem with all of them is that if you don’t personally care about doing the thing, then it’s not going to work. It doesn’t matter how hot it is when you read about a slave kneeling perfectly on command, if you don’t personally care about it then don’t make it a rule.

There are no few stereotypes out there about how doms are supposed to behave and what kinds of rules they’re supposed to have, but rules that you don’t care about are just one more chore to remember. If you don’t personally care about a rule, you’re not going to remember to enforce it and that’s just going to suck for everyone. If someone loves having rules, they’re going to feel unloved and unseen if they make a mistake and you don’t notice, and then you’re going to feel like an asshole for making them feel that way and that’s a feedback loop that doesn’t do anyone any good.

Just because your s-type has been fantasizing about having a d-type of their very own for years and has been very insistent that they want ALL THE RULES RIGHT NOW that doesn’t make it a good idea. Don’t do it! Fantasy is great but it’s not reality. Suddenly having to remember and follow all of the rules all at once is just too much, and it’s going to be jarring as fuck even if you do deeply and sincerely want to have all of the rules. You simply can’t expect that going from 0 to 60 is actually going to be fun, that’s not how humans work.

Sure, for a weekend, tops, all of the rules can be fun, but every day? When you’re tired? When it’s a Wednesday that feels like a Friday, and you still have two more days to get through? When everything has gone wrong and you were stuck at work for an extra two hours fixing somebody else’s fuckup and you want nothing more than to sit down on the couch and do absolutely nothing for the rest of the night? You simply can’t, as the s-type, expect that going from no rules to all the rules instantly is actually going to be fun. It’s much more likely to go from “This is great!” to “This is a lot!” to “I’m not sure I like this… to “Oh my fuck time out” and frankly it takes an unusual level of self-awareness to realize that the problem is having to learn all of those rules at once and not that your dom is somehow doing it wrong.

Sadly, it’s also a recipe for resentment if the d-type doesn’t realize how unreasonable it is to give someone all the rules at once. You can’t expect someone to get everything right instantly, learning and habit formation both take time. The most willing and motivated s-type in the world simply cannot get everything right immediately. It’s not that they don’t care or aren’t trying, it’s that humans have limits.

The reason I’m harping on that so hard is that I’ve seen horror story after horror story online from people who tried to go from no rules to all the rules instantly and had it blow up in their faces. I’d like for people to avoid that if they can.

Once you’ve decided on your rule or two to start with, try that out for a couple of weeks. You’ve got to see what it’s like to keep up your rules on a Monday when you’re having a Monday before you add more of them. After your trial period you should debrief, talk openly about what you liked, what you didn’t, what was easy, what was hard, what you want to keep doing, what you want to stop. After that, make your adjustments and maybe add another thing, but if and only if you both want to.

You are not required to aim for 24/7 total power exchange. You don’t have to have any rules outside of sexytime if you don’t fucking want to, and you’re allowed to dial it back at any time if either one of you is more stressed by following the rules than they are satisfied by having or giving rules.

Don’t forget you are not required to have standing rules at all. Not all doms or all subs give a shit about rules. God knows I can’t be fucking bothered to check up on whether someone did the thing or not. If it feels like homework, don’t force yourself! This is supposed to fun, dammit.

It may be that your only rule is for the s-type to do what the d-type says when they ask for something. Not everybody wants service all the time, it’s totally okay just to want to have your partner do what you tell them if you do give them an order. It may be that you try out a bunch of rules and only a couple of them end up sticking. It’s okay to only have a few rules, it in no way means you’re less of a dom if having tons of rules doesn’t work for you. It’s okay to drop rules that don’t work for you anymore even if they worked great for years. It’s okay to have temporary rules too.

Any rules that make you and your partner happy are good rules, no matter how small or silly they are.

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