When the movie Fifty Shades of Grey came out, people were intrigued by the plot. Many people became interested with dom-sub relationships and how it works.
When understanding the thrilling but complex world of BDSM, many people think that it’s just all about dom and sub sex, but it’s not. There’s much more to dom sub relationships than handcuffs, blindfolds, chains, whips, and ropes.
Of course, before we can fully understand the dom-sub lifestyle, we first want to know how this relationship works. Aside from carnal pleasure, does it offer other benefits? Do the couples who practice the BDSM lifestyle last?
What is a dom-sub relationship?
Before we tackle dom sub relationships, we must first understand what BDSM means.
BDSM stands for Bondage and Discipline, Dominance and Submission, and Sadism and Masochism. In layman’s terms, a dom-sub relationship or d/s relationship means that one of the partners is the dom or dominant, and the other is the sub or the submissive partner.
Here’s more information about the BDSM and the dom-sub dynamic:
Bondage and discipline or BD
It focuses on restraining the sub using ties, ropes, neckties, etc. Usually, it is a form of discipline and show of power. It’s also accompanied by mild spanking or any form of discipline.
Dominance and submission or D/S
It focuses on roleplays. It’s an exciting way of acting out fantasies. It usually revolves around one partner who holds power and the other being controlled.
Sadism and masochism or S&M
These are all about the extreme version of BD. It is where both partners get sexual gratification from receiving and causing pain. Often, the couple would use sex furniture, toys, and even whips and gag balls.
Now that we can differentiate the different types of dom-sub relationships, we can now focus on the dom sub relationship dynamics.
Dom-sub relationships are just like any normal relationship. What sets them apart from others is the fact that they practice the BDSM lifestyle. Also, in this type of relationship, there is a dom and sub.
There is a difference in power in this relationship where the dom-sub relationship roles and traits are practiced. Basically, the dom or dominant partner is the one who leads, and the sub or the submissive partner is the one who follows.
Dom-sub relationships aren’t just limited to physical contact. In fact, you can even play your role even when chatting or when you are having a phone conversation. However, most of the d/s relationships that we know are physical, and the dynamics of this relationship are actually broad.
The most common types of dom-sub relationships are as follows:
The master and slave
An example of this type of d/s relationship is a submissive slave and a dominant mistress. This is where the slave surrenders and does everything to please the mistress, and in turn, the mistress will command the slave.
Roles can be reversed, and depending on the couple, they can also choose to take their roles full time. This also falls under the category Total Power Exchange or TPE.
The owner and pet
As we all know, pets are submissive to their owners. The sub usually plays the role of a kitten or a puppy. They are always eager to be petted, kissed, and for some, even wearing pet collars.
Daddy and little or DDLG
As the name suggests, the female sub plays the role of a little girl being cared for by her Daddy Dom. The Daddy Dom will play as the primary caregiver of the young, innocent, and weak sub.
Here are other master and sub relationship themes that you can check out.
– A strict professor and student
– A police officer and a criminal
– A bad boy and a young, innocent girl
– The boss of a huge company and a secretary
The dom – traits and roles
If you find dom sub relationships to be interesting, we also need to learn the different types of dom sub relationship roles and traits.
The dom is the one who takes full control over everything
The dom expects to be pleased
The dom prioritizes their own pleasure over anything else
The dom also hates disobedience and will punish the sub if needed
The sub – traits and roles
An important note to remember in dom-sub relationships is that both partners enjoy the BDSM lifestyle. There is no way that the submissive is forced to do anything against their will. Everything about the dom-sub relationship is consensual.
Roles and traits of the sub include:
The sub is expected to follow whatever the dom asks
As part of the roleplay, the sub accepts being controlled
Will put the pleasure and the needs of their partner, the dom, at all times
Shows the willingness to please the dom at all cost
Accepts punishment when needed.
Common misconceptions of this type of relationship
Even today, living the dom-sub lifestyle can be challenging. In fact, there are so many misconceptions about b/d relationships that often lead to couples being judged even before people could understand how the lifestyle works.
Here are the three most common misconceptions about BDSM dom-sub relationships:
Dom-sub relationship is not healthy
Couples who love, respect, and understand each other both agree to enter the d/s relationship. There is nothing wrong with a mutual decision to enter this lifestyle when both parties are aware of the dom-sub relationship rules and consequences.
D/S relationships are misogynistic
The people who are open to trying this lifestyle and those who have already practiced dom-sub relationships all agree that this is not true. In fact, dom sub dynamics have women who play as doms.
Being a mistress, domme, lady boss, or dominatrix is actually very empowering and allows the couple to play around and explore different roles.
Dom-sub relationships are dangerous
This type of lifestyle has rules to follow. That’s why many experts guide people who want to try a healthy dom sub relationship.
BDSM and d/s relationship doesn’t aim to cause harm to anyone.
It’s about the exchange of power, sexual journey and exploration, and even a form of therapy for some.
Does dom-sub relationship have any benefits?
Aside from sexual pleasures, does the d/s dynamic give the couple something more, and is a dominant submissive relationship healthy?
It may be hard to believe, but the dom-sub lifestyle actually has lots of benefits to offer. Here are some of the benefits of a dom-sub relationship.
1. Improves intimacy –
D/s relationships allow the couple to be more open to each other. Emotional intimacy and trust are needed to be able to have this type of relationship.
You can’t just practice role playing games with your partner without knowing if they like it or not, right? Again, this is very important because we don’t want to force our partners to do anything against their will.
If you can be open with your partner about your sexual fantasies, then your partner can be all out with you. Fantasies fulfilled can definitely spice up your relationships.
4. Improves mental wellness –
We all know how important mental health is. Satisfaction and excitement from dom-sub partnership can help you with the release of dopamine and serotonin. These chemicals are the ones responsible for feeling happiness.
5. Reduces stress –
As you relax and play the role that excites you and your partner, not only will you feel good, but you will also relieve stress.
Know what does a sub wants from a dom, watch this video:
Rules to remember for dom-sub relationships
Dom sub relationship guidelines and rules are needed. Rules and guidelines will first have to be established to ensure that no one gets hurt, forced, or abused in any way.
There can be times where some people pretend to live the d/s lifestyle but would turn out to be abusive towards their partners. We want to avoid this scenario at all costs.
Here are some of the most important rules of Dom-Sub Relationship
1. Have an open mind
Before you and your partner start practicing dom-sub relationships, make sure that you have an open mind. This lifestyle is all about being open to wild ideas and fantasies.
Here, you will experience things and situations that you have not tried before, so before you say no, keep an open mind and try it one time.
2. Learn to trust
Dom-sub relationships rely on trust. How can you enjoy being punished (pleasured) if you don’t trust your partner?
Show your partner that you know how to respect the rules and that you can be trusted. Without it, you won’t be able to enjoy the fun and thrill of roleplaying.
Dom sub relationships aren’t perfect, so don’t expect too much.
It’s all about exploring new sensations, ideas, and pleasures. There will be times where things won’t work, so you have to try again.
4. Practice empathy
We all know how BDSM and D/S relationships are all about excitement and pleasure, right? However, in any event, if your partner doesn’t agree with the idea or isn’t yet ready to try it, learn to empathize.
Never force your partner or anyone to do things they are not yet comfortable doing.
5. Open communication
Communication is also very important with dom-sub relationships. From setting the rules, boundaries, fantasies, scripts, and even roles – you would only be able to fully enjoy this type of lifestyle if you and your partner would really be honest and open with each other.
6. Consider your health
The dominant and submissive roles in your relationship are a little bit tiring and will take up time and energy. That’s why both of you must be in optimum health.
In any event that your partner is not feeling well or is experiencing some health issues, support them and don’t force them to do things that they can’t enjoy.
7. Come up with a “safe” word
In this type of relationship, having a “safe” word is very important. We all know that as much as we want, there can still be risks when practicing BDSM or just doing dom-sub plays.
In any event that you want to let your partner know that they need to stop, you just have to say the “safe” word to let them know you’re not okay.
How do couples start a dom sub relationship?
Are you tempted to try the d/s lifestyle? Are you a sub looking for a dom or vice versa?
If you want to try BDSM or any roleplaying games such as teacher-student, you need to make sure if your partner is into it too.
Here are the steps to follow if you want to shift to dom-sub relationships.
1. Communicate with each other first –
Be open-minded and find the perfect timing to talk to your partner. Don’t ask your partner if they want to be tied tonight – that will just scare them. Instead, talk about the information that you have read, facts, and even the benefits. Tempt your partner but don’t rush.
2. Be playful
You don’t have to go full-blast yet or start buying handcuffs and costumes. Try to play around first. Start with blindfolds, talking, asking your partner about your hidden fantasies, etc.
Allow that slow burn to take over until you and your partner are ready to submit to your b/s roles.
3. Be educated –
There are still so many things that you can learn about the dynamics of BDSM. Don’t rush and enjoy the process of learning. By understanding how this type of relationship works, you would be able to fully enjoy this thrilling experience.
This kind of relationship is both exciting and fun. It even helps the couple to be more open and trusting with each other. Imagine being able to fulfill your fantasy with the love of your life – doesn’t that sound nice?
Being the dom or sub may require adjustments, understanding, and lots of trial and error, but is it worth it? Definitely!
Just remember that dom-sub relationships should practice respect, care, understanding, trust, communication, and empathy. Once you learn how these things work, then you would be able to enjoy this kinky, exciting, and satisfying lifestyle.
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Rachael Pace is a noted relationship writer associated with Marriage.com. She provides inspiration, support, and empowerment in the form of motivational articles and essays. Rachael enjoys studying the evolution of loving partnerships and is passionate about writing on them. She believes that everyone should make room for love in their lives and encourages couples to work on overcoming their challenges together.