I figured I would post a controversial title for this entry. From time to time on FetLife I see a comment that one’s submission is a gift and I sometimes see comments that one’s dominance is a gift, with plenty of responses of agreement and disagreement. It’s a touchy topic for some people.
A google search defines gift as “A thing given willingly to someone without payment.” By that definition, one could easily see submission or dominance as a gift. However, the word gift implies more than just that definition in my view. It is not just something given but something which is for the purposes of the benefit of the receiver. For example, one wouldn’t say “I gave him the gift of a punch in the arm” … well, unless he would enjoy that sort of thing lol.
I also add more to the definition. I guess it’s a complicated word. A gift is something which is not for the benefit of the sender. For example, if spouse A wants a specific computer game and purchases one for spouse B who may also want that same game, then that does not seem like a gift to me, it is just a mutually enjoyable purchase. The item can still qualify as being a gift if person A does not enjoy the item itself but enjoys giving the gift. Giving a gift usually involves pleasure for the sender, but the pleasure for a sender in a gift is in the giving, not in the actual use of the gift.
I admit that it is a very fine line. If partner A gives to partner B a recliner couch as a gift and partner B being more relaxed is of benefit to partner A, then that still qualifies as a gift even though partner A receives an indirect benefit. There really is no hard and fast rule in my view.
So by my understanding of the word gift, person A gives something to person B which person A believes that person B would like and which is not something for the direct benefit of person A. A fruitcake might also fit that definition, regardless of whether or not person B actually enjoys the fruitcake, as long as person A doesn’t eat and enjoy the fruitcake.
So are submission and dominance a gift? I can only speak for myself, and I certainly hope not. Yes I give my submission to my Princess and she gives her dominance to me, and yes it is partially for the benefit of the other, but it is for our own benefit also. I don’t submit to my Princess only because it is what she wants, it is because I also want it. If I didn’t want to be submissive but she wanted it, and because of that I became submissive, then that would be a gift. That doesn’t apply here, though, because we both want it. At the same time, my Princess dominates me because she wants to and because she knows that I also want it. In other words, it’s a fully mutual thing and not a one-sided gift given from one to the other.
Admittedly, my definition of “gift” does not match others’ definition. It’s just that using the word gift in the context of a D/s relationship does not seem to fit at all for me.
I could certainly see where “gift” could fit into a D/s dynamic for others. If partner A is into D/s but really doesn’t like a particular activity while partner B very much enjoys it, then partner A may provide a “gift” to partner B in participating despite not liking it much. This is a dynamic for D/s I do not like at all personally, but to each their own. The reason that I do not like that dynamic for D/s personally is that I like most everything BDSM-related which my Princess does to me or has me do, except for limits. So if she wants to do an activity then go for it, as long as it isn’t past one of the limits we agree on. The only things I could gift to her as a submissive – the only things I would not enjoy myself – are past our limits, which may change over time but they aren’t things which either of us want.
Going in the other direction, I am more into BDSM than my Princess is (fantasizing about it for dozens of years as I have will have that effect!) and there are BDSM-related activities she would not enjoy. She could “gift” me her participation in a BDSM-related activity but I would very much not want that because I would not enjoy any BDSM-related activity which would not come from her own enjoyment. That has always been part of my particular BDSM kink and fantasies, the sadistic dominant must enjoy it or else I wouldn’t enjoy it.
That is why I say that I do not want gifts to be part of our D/s dynamic.
Ok, you may have noticed that I have put in some extra qualifiers in what I have commented on above for my own situation. There are plenty of activities which are not D/s related which I would not enjoy, and I could gift any of those to her, and I do sometimes. Yes sometimes. I know that as a “perfect” 24/7 submissive I could gift her everything which I dislike, but I’m certainly not that type of submissive. I know that some subs only desire is to please their dominant but I’m not that type of sub, either. As a loving husband I enjoy pleasing my Princess but as with most any loving husband there are limits to what I do.
Going in the other direction, there are plenty of things which my Princess could and does gift to me, and I do enjoy all of those. It is just that none of them are BDSM-related because I would not enjoy a BDSM-related gift at all, as I mentioned.
There is a very famous D/s F/m author who frequently posts on FetLife. I very much enjoy her posts except when she promotes her idea of giving her sub gifts of dominance or fetish fulfillment. I believe that she posts that she gifts to her sub/husband whippings because he enjoys that. That dynamic of giving gifts of dominance is great for those who want that, but it very much goes against my grain because I want mutually fulfilling BDSM and D/s, and the word “gift” goes against my view of mutually fulfilling … with the understanding that I have a somewhat unusual definition of the word gift.
Summary with my somewhat complicated definition of gift: I enjoy giving gifts to and receiving gifts from my Princess, except for BDSM-related gifts because those are all mutually fulfilling so the word gift does not apply.
“My submission to you is a gift” is to me the same as saying “I don’t really want to submit to you in particular but I submit to you as a gift.” Blecch.
Ok, enough of that theory/opinion-talk.
Last night my Princess and I watched a great old Twilight Zone (Rod Serling early 1960s) episode “The Chaser” in which a hopelessly-in-love man gives to the female object of his love a slip-into-her-champagne potion which makes her fall madly in love with him. The woman goes way overboard in giving the guy love and affection, and since the writer Rod Serling was apparently an anti-romantic, it turns into a horror story in which the man abhors all of the sickly-sweet too-much affection he receives from her. After days of this too-much-love the last line is when she is kissing him on the cheek as she embraces him and says “And we will be together like this for the rest of our lives.” That line in that situation could be a good romantic ending but instead it is meant as a horror story as the guy’s face contorts in emotional agony that his life is ruined. Classic!
Watching this episode in my teens and 20s, even though the focus of the show is more about her overboard love than about her submission, I would focus on how submissive she was in offering to do anything he wanted. She said things like “Would you like another back rub?” and “My happiness is from your happiness.” Wow, who wouldn’t want a spouse like that? I mean really. Just ask a vanilla unattached guy on the street if he wants a woman whose happiness is truly received from his happiness. Go on, I will wait here while you go to the street to ask! I bet some of those who worked on that TV episode would ask themselves “And that’s supposed to be a nightmare????”
My thoughts in my 20s and watching it now are that the guy was horrible in either not taking control of his slave … I mean of the situation … and letting her know how she could make him happy. Is she bothering you kissing your cheek while you are reading? Then ask her to do something else. Or if this is a consensual D/s situation then tell her to (fill in the blank here with whatever you want)! I certainly would have been telling her things to do (details intentionally missing!), once she convinced me over and over that she wanted me to let her know. Oops, I’m a sub, that sort of talk doesn’t fit this blog lol. Anywho, he was a terrible “Master” and Rod Serling completely failed to convince me that this general situation would be a nightmare. Maybe that was Rod’s ploy, as a double-reverse swerve, but I doubt it. Either way, it’s a very enjoyable episode.
Clarification: the woman in the episode was seemingly vacuous and over-the-top annoying with her “affection.” For example, she did not ask about the book he was reading, she didn’t seem to care. I do not believe that her happiness was only in providing him happiness, I believe that she was extremely needy beyond that in needing to be present and providing direct immediate attention of her choosing to him. There is nothing wrong with that but that is very different from ““My happiness is only from your happiness.” And certainly many guys would not want to have a woman like the one in the episode. The actress played the part well.
The episode has 3 foot references which I like, too. The professor who sells the man the potion says, among other things, “She will fall at your feet.” Okay, that’s not much of a foot reference. Also, at one point the woman is playfully tickling her man’s nose for several seconds with a powder-puff-type thing on her shoe, so that presumably he is smelling her shoe. Okay, that’s a bit of a stretch but it seems unusual to me. The best by far, though, is when the man arrives home from work and she has him sit down while she kneels at his feet and says something like “Darling, let me remove your shoes and rub your feet. How about if I dip my hands in a bucket of ice? I know that your feet get so hot at work.” Woohoo!!!!!!!!
All through my late teens and 20s I dreamed, fantasized, about having a woman fall for me like that, and to worship my feet. Even though I mostly fantasized about suffering 24/7 torture and agony, what I desired more than fantasized back in my 20s was to be adored like that, although I knew that both types of fantasizing (extreme suffering and extreme adoration) were very unrealistic to that degree, and would actually be terrible if pushed to that degree (or at least the suffering would be lol). And now that I know what actual romantic love is, rather than just fantasizing, I far prefer my real Princess with whom I share deep love and affection, not that silly over-the-top stuff in the episode. Through our entire marriage my Princess and I have joked about this episode with each other as one or the other of us would jokingly ask as a sign of submission if we should dip our hands in a bucket of ice. And lately after a walk around the neighborhood when afterwards she presses her hot bare soles against my face which is cool from the outside night air, sometimes I ask “Would you like me to dip my face in a bucket of ice?”