It's times like this where I find myself incredibly thankful for the type of environment The Cage fosters.
Something interesting happened to me the other day, and I thought it might make for an interesting discussion.
If you apply the label, submissive to yourself, albeit at a munch, or on a website, is/should that be enough for strangers to treat you like one?
I received a message on another site (which shall remain nameless) from a dominant telling me that a passage from my profile, in which I demanded not to be called "submissive, slave, etc." before entering into some sort of agreement, was both improper of a "slave" and a turn-off.
Is there truth to this, or is this simply more toxicity?
I'd say toxic. You have every right to ask not to be called sub. If your not owned by a person, they have no rights over you jst because they labeled themselves as Dominant. Without discussion there is no consent. That's like me saying I'm a mistress and every submissive much respect me. Says who? Anybody can give themselves a title. It's what we do and how we handle ourselves that defines us. This is not about giving yourself a title, it's about the attitude behind the title. Which would mean more?… someone calling you Master / Mistress because you ordered them to; or calling you Master / Mistress because they respect you for your love, honor, compassion and integrity? the same goes for submissives.
Ultimately submissives have the final say. They can submit or not, they can give respect or refuse a Dom/me No one deserves a rank or title just because they hold the Dominant role or because they say so. Respect is earned, not assumed. A Mistress who has to demand respect, has not earned it and is therefore not truly deserving of it.
This is something I have real issues with. I agree with MissBonnie. Completely.
Personally, I am submissive to ONE. The ONE I chose to submit to. I often try not to place a 'label' on myself, because it tends to create issues in some cases. I have had 'Dominants' run me down and attack me for being outspoken, and not being a 'real' submissive. Well, that's because I don't submit to you, sweetheart. It doesn't really matter where on the spectrum you fall, there is a way to follow basic protocols and behave in particular situations, and there is 'bowing down' to every fool who thinks you should. Go with the former. Always.
Being submissive, whether it's your nature, a choice you have made....it never means you are submissive to EVERYONE. That is the beauty of it all. Just as a Dominant isn't Dominant to EVERYONE. Each has traits that work when there is a dynamic, which is built over time, and based on trust, respect, honesty. There is a difference to being a certain 'personality' and being in your role. I am a Dominant personality, however I submit to one person. That one person who has earned it, whom I trust, respect etc.
- First of all, you should be thankful they said this to you. It's a great way to establish that this person isn't worthy of your attention and that you shouldn't waste time on them.
- Secondly, of course it's toxic, or negative, from them. If they establish from your profile that you are not for them, why would they bother to send you a message to scold you about that? That's childish.
But also, and maybe more importantly, I think we should learn to value comments based on where they come from. If my submissive would walk up to me and tell me I'm an asshole, that would be a serious thing for me. If some unknown person in the street does the same, it might briefly annoy me but it wouldn't mean anything.
This person who wrote you doesn't know you. They can have a value judgment about you, but it is not one that should be important to you.
I am a submissive, but that only means that I am submissive towards my Dominant, not towards bunch of other people, who just claim they are Dominants. In fact, I am everything but submissive towards other people.
While this “label” expresses clearly my needs and defines who I am, it basically does that only regarding one particular person (who is my Dominant). Plus, I am also a masochist - does that mean that I should allow just anyone to inflict pain on me? I don’t think it would be considered as safe.
And I really do not understand why some people who call themselves Dominants expect all submissives to crawl at their feet and praise them. Seriously? Would my submission have any value for anyone if I would submit without thinking twice to every person that approaches me?
Oh, and yes, there was a time when I was told (multiple times) that it is impossible that I am a _real_ submissive, because I am way too demanding, stubborn and mouthy. And honestly? I might be this way, yes, so I took that as a compliment.
I identify as a service submissive. As a single practitioner, this means I chose when and where and with whom I exercise this. Just because I like serving, it doesn’t mean I’m inclined or willing to serve just anyone just because they identify as a Dominant.
My mantra in situations where someone expects me to be submissive, or tries to corral me into it is ‘I may be submissive, but I am not YOUR submissive’.
No submissive owes any Dominant anything than polite courtesy - as good manners and etiquette dictates. Anything other than that requires negotiation where both parties reach an equally amenable and mutually beneficial agreement.
First off, thank you all for the input and support!
I don't think a lack of decency is anything specific to the lifestyle, by any means. I think one thing that makes it all the more tricky to navigate is that more often than not, the lifestyle comes with it's fair share of labels. But yeah, we all owe each-other courtesy and respect, and I am certainly not about to empower that sort of behavior.
Tbh, I sent a long, snarky-ass message back to them. Maybe not the best thing to do, but I was tight, luckily I did include a lot of educational talking points, so maybe that counts for something?
Just because you may be a submissive does not give anyone the right to treat you like dirt. You're a human being. Being submissive is not a weakness, it takes courage. If there's no respect and trust, which have to be earned in a two-way exchange, then there's no basis for anything. You have every right to define parameters. If a someone thinks they can just dictate to you in a non-consensual manner because they call themselves a Dom/me, they're an ignorant, arrogant asshole and best avoided.
It's some toxic bullshit. I AM a submissive. Unless I agree to it, I am not YOUR submissive and you are gonna have a BAD time if you send me a PM with "hello slave" or "kneel, sub" or whatever. A really bad time.