According to dictionary.com, one of the definitions of “negotiate” is “to deal or bargain with another or others, as in the preparation of a treaty or contract or in preliminaries to a business deal.” It’s a term that is mentioned over and over in the lifestyle and it’s always recommended that one doesn’t engage in play or any other aspect of a BDSM relationship without first negotiating the terms of the interaction including, but not limited to limits, safe words, desires, and overall expectations for the interaction.
I have always known and understood the importance of negotiating a scene, but I never considered the importance of negotiation within a relationship. What I mean by this is when you are in a long term, romantic relationship with someone, how does negotiation fit in? Sure there are plenty of 24/7 relationships out there with a Total Power Exchange (TPE), and I do believe that those would require negotiation, even if it is for the submissive to completely relinquish all rights. Sir and I don’t have a TPE relationship. To some it may appear that way, but on the bottom line, I always have a say in everything that happens. I have the right to think for myself and act for myself. Sometimes, what I say or do can come back and bite me in the ass, but I do have a right to my feelings, my thoughts, and many of the other things given up in a TPE.
Every since I moved in with Sir, we have been trying to figure out our dynamic. What we have is definitely more than just a bedroom BDSM relationship and we consider ourselves living it 24/7, but in the day-to-day aspect of our relationship, we are definitely more of 1950s Household/Domestic Discipline than anything else. His role is to help me become a better me and my role is one of support to Him. (It’s sometimes a pain to put into words what I’m thinking and this is one of those times.) I started doing research about different Domestic Discipline dynamics out there and came across a couple of blogs that have been really helpful: A Domestic Discipline Society and Learning Domestic Discipline.
Both blogs gave me a few talking points for a conversation with Sir about our dynamic and that’s how it began. We were meant to sit down and have this discussion back in August, shortly after I moved in, but it never happened. Basically, the idea is that the rules of the DD household come from my goals. It’s important to start off small, but ultimately, my goals shape the way the rules look and Sir then decides on the discipline aspect.
We finally sat down this past week and talked about our relationship. The idea is that I have my personal goals and responsibilities to which Sir holds me accountable. In holding me accountable, He does His best to be a good example, so He is held accountable to His own goals and responsibilities. In the big picture, it’s just a giant circle and as long as we both are doing out part, we will always encourage the other. (It made sense in my head. I hope it makes sense to you.) We still have a few more things to discuss, but we did get a good start.
I was planning to upload a picture of the actual document, but keep getting an error message, so I’m just gonna have to type it. Sir wrote the list as we talked, I didn’t do much talking. He pretty much made the list from memory. The whole experience made me truly appreciate the fact that He listens to every word I say.
- Blog/Journal at least 3 days a week.
- Develop character sketches for 2 major characters for book by 2/28.
- Develop ideas for “products.”
- Research start up costs for products.
The first one is an ongoing one that will most likely remain on my list because I need the constant reminder there. The other three have deadlines and when we reach the deadline, there will be new ones added. I want to write a book as well as start a business crafting toys and implements and stuff to sell. I’m creative, innovative, and love making things with my hands. I figured I could turn that into a business making good quality items for others in the lifestyle to enjoy. 🙂
My Daily Chores
- Make the bed, hiding all evidence of the mad sex romp that likely took place just before exiting the bed. (This is exactly what Sir wrote. I’m not joking.)
- Dishes after each meal.
- Keep the dining room table cleared and clutter free.
- Prepare meals
These are the “givens.” I like having them on paper because it’s a reminder and the fact that Sir wrote them down makes them His orders to me.
- Clean bathroom (ick…my least favorite of all the chores)
- Sweep and mop kitchen
- Laundry to include all ironing of Sir’s work clothes
This is pretty much what we have accomplished. I’ve lived with Him since August last year and only now have things on paper, but it’s a start and we plan on sitting down every month to revisit things. As for discipline, we both agree that His belt is the primary form of punishment, but we also discussed the use of other types of punishment as well as implementing a reward system. Never, in a million years, did I think I would be in a relationship like this, but there’s something to be said about getting the expectations out there and in the open. Spankings and such aside, a lot of vanilla relationships could probably be saved if people were more up front about their expectations in a relationship, but everyone’s always too afraid to speak up. It’s one of the reasons I love BDSM: You’re expected to speak up.
I’m not sure if I will be sharing every addendum to the negotiation, but once we develop the Discipline Agreement, I’ll share with you.
As for when we play, in the bedroom, we negotiate the particulars of each individual scene as they occur. We have safe words and I help choose the implements and such, but Sir gets to decide how He will use them. 😉 We are constantly discussing limits and always debrief a scene after the fact. I couldn’t ask for a better person with whom to share my life and I couldn’t ask for a better person with whom to explore my sexuality.