Submit and Release
Updated: Oct 24, 2022
BY DOMINA VESPER
People often ask me about the role of the bottom in D/s relationship or experience and what unusual or meaningful things it can bring to a person’s life. I talk about the ability to let go of control, to trust, to feel taken care of, and even deconstruct old traumas.
For example, a person may have a memory of a moment where they showed weakness or got in trouble—lost control of the situation, and the frustration of what they could have done differently and can haunt people for years.
In this case, a scene with an experienced Dominant can help to recreate that scenario and gives a submissive the opportunity to relive this situation embodied in real time, but slightly changing the moment of culmination or making a different decision. It can help to reframe the memories from negative to positive. Such methods of deconstruction of negative experiences are used in psychotherapy and, of course, specialists use more “orthodox” methods to achieve the desired result, such as hypnosis.
In my early life, I had a traumatic experience when being a submissive. The Top allowed himself way too much, taking advantage of my inexperience and awkwardness. Unfortunately, this experience was not the only one. Practicing with both male and female Tops, I found that my feelings, consent, and privacy were insignificant to them.
The details of their sessions with me were shared with everyone, showing me as a whore. They said it was my fault that I was used and raped, banding together to tear me down further, physically and mentally, as if it was fun. To this day, thirteen years later, some people are still sharing these stories as if there’s nothing else to talk about.
For many years I ignored those experiences, which, despite all my stamina, gave me a persistent distrust of Tops regardless of gender. At the same time, I myself tried to be as sensitive and careful as a Domme could be. I try to give everyone I work with a lot of space for trust and imagination, and always include aftercare, which I had never experienced myself. Moreover, I only learned the term “aftercare” after coming to the US; that’s how shallow and shitty the Russian scene is.
A year and a half ago at a party, I witnessed the work of one particular Top. He tied up two women and hung them from the ceiling. This was the first time in many years that I physically wanted to be in their place. His care for them excited my thinnest heart strings, and their happy faces gave me a languishing feeling of envy.
I began to communicate with Him from time to time before the pandemic, but my caution did not allow me to come too close so as not to succumb to the temptation—he has that crazy energy that fogs up all the glasses and windows around me.
Around a month ago we met again. After a couple of evenings and long conversations about BDSM, personal boundaries and past experiences, which we coincided at the most critical points, I thought that I could try to deconstruct my past experience and replace it with a new and better one, just as I do it for my submissives. He seemed to be the only one to whom I could entrust myself.
We agreed to have a scene.
The day before the date, he texted and asked to meet for negotiations. This is an obligatory moment, although as a Domme I usually arrange negotiation right before the scene; it takes about 20 minutes. We talked for a few hours, shared emotions and fears, set boundaries and tried to imbue each other with maximum trust. My heart was racing from horror and excitement all at the same time. Allowing myself to be weak in the presence of another living person? Unheard of! I don’t allow myself to cry even when I’m alone! That night I didn’t sleep, and in the morning I was only able to consume one cup of coffee. Somehow,
I survived until evening.
I rushed to his place like a little frightened Bambi. I was late.
When I entered, the room filled with light and I saw him. It became even more frightening. Do I stay and show my weakness? Or leave right now and show my weakness? I would lose anyway, but staying meant a 50% chance of getting something, instead of leaving which would give me a 100% chance of nothing.
I started a playlist I'd made for this occasion the day before.
After some relaxing chatter, he began tying me to a tiny school desk in the middle of the room. To calm my trembling, I tried to joke, to be a little sarcastic, and more cocky than what he'd seen of me before. All my psychological barriers were up, and my inner arrows were ready to shoot any moment. My desire to control the situation almost made me say something nasty and humiliating. Change the narrative, make him leave or kick me out. But I realized that I was here not for this, and literally bit my lip just to keep silent.
Several fixations later, I felt myself more relaxed. All this time, he was very careful and attentive, constantly asking if everything was okay and closely monitoring my condition. At some point, I asked for water. My hands were tied up so He had to hold the glass for me while I was drinking. It was a very intimate and touching moment.
“Thank you”, I said.
“I want you to address me as Master.”
“Thank you, Master…” I whispered.
I’d never said this before and tried to see if these words could get comfortable in my mouth.
The more He tied me up, the more I felt that I could trust Him. He won’t hurt me. I wanted to keep Him in my head as "My Dominant" and give Him the keys to my emotions.
“You’re mine”, He said.
I couldn’t disagree. I gave myself to Him.
After some time, He started to spank me. Light and gentle. When my skin got used to the pain, I asked him to intensify the spanking and that is when my brain went into orbit.
An important reason why people like pain is the release of adrenaline, dopamine, as well as a drop in internal defense mechanisms. When you are mentally locked in your own head and constantly in a state of concentration or severe stress that must be contained, it might not be so easy to let that thing go or cry it out.
For example, I do not allow myself to show weakness even to my closest friends. I feel comfortable being strong, and everyone is already accustomed to the fact that I am some kind of iron lady who will outlive death itself. I cannot cry, even being alone with myself,
because it means admitting my own weakness. But, crying from pain is no longer so psychologically scary, and an intense release of hormones brings the brain into an altered state, which allows you to open the floodgates and throw out emotions. This is what I needed–tears without guilt.
But could I?
The pain and I are old friends, and therefore I dissolved into it with every spank, but my Dominant did not think to stop. His hits were sharp, hard and fast. I know from experience this is painful for both of us. My stupid head was arranging another challenge: what will give up faster? My ass or his hand? He turned out to be more resilient. I tried to hold back the scream by gritting my teeth, but it burst out, first in the form of a stifled groan, and then in a scream — “FUCK!!!!”. Amy Lee in the stereo was asking if one can lose control just once in their life, while the same question echoed in my head.
Pain overwhelmed me completely, but I tried to resist. Tears were almost coming out, and I was hoping He’d get tired, or bored and stop... He didn’t. I had no other choice left than to lose this game and give up.
“Please stop.” I don't remember my own voice, but these words seemed to sound in my head. He stopped, walked around me, and began stroking my head.
“My girl, my little girl, so strong, so brave, you went through so much, I am so proud of you.”
My heart skipped a beat. I don't know if He scripted these words in advance, or if He was speaking sincerely, but that was exactly what I wanted to hear. My armor was completely destroyed and these words hit my very soul—it was all that I always wanted to hear from my father, my friends, my husband... no one ever told me that they were proud of me and that I
had gone through a lot. I am never being comforted, only because I am the one who comforts others. All I usually hear is “good job” or “yay, keep doing what you’re doing,” which is completely impersonal. And although person-centered compliments are offensive for some, for me they turned out to be incredibly desirable. It was hurtful to realize this.
I felt like my entire body slowed down. It felt like I was on acid. I felt every cell in my body and my blood pumping in my heart. I hadn’t shed a tear, but I felt a surreal surge of new emotions. And yet, I was realizing how poor of a Dominant I am compared to Him. He
read me so clearly and got where he needed to press all the right buttons. I rarely manage to achieve such balance and intensity in the first scene with someone. I don't know what did the trick. Was it His experience or that chemistry coincided?
I wanted to hold His face in my hands and look into his eyes. He gently untied me, and my emotions rushed out, from slight sadness to hysterical laughter. I wanted to tell him everything and at the same moment I did not want to hear my own voice. I wanted his words to echo endlessly in my head. I never wanted the aftercare to end.
The next few days, I was sensitive to literally everything. I could not read my social media feed because it was filled with news about the tragic events in Atlanta and made me want to cry. All I wanted was to be held in someone’s arms and hear that I’m a good girl. I wasn't even able to eat until three days after, as if my body was trying to get used to new chemical processes caused by an overload of adrenaline. I constantly listened to the playlist from that night. Some of the songs gave me goosebumps—throwing me into the memories of that night.
A couple of days later, my Dominant came to me to talk about what happened. It was very difficult for me to say everything I felt out loud, and I realized that I would never trust anyone else to do this to me. All His actions from the first to the last were perfect. Of course, I still remember my negative experience from the past, but every day it seems to me more and more meaningless and insignificant. Five days later, for the first time in a long time, I woke up completely calm, without worries or guilt and with a clear head. Seems like in the deep dark waters of myself, I was finally able to touch my center with my fingertips...
WORDS BY DOMINA VESPER
PHOTOS BY MASTER WILLIAM