Letter to a New Sub

You’ve moved from a sexual planet that has three kinds of flora and a couple of butterflies to one that has a new flower next to every tree. You want to give and give. Service is your new best friend, so you want to become pliant. I’ll ask you to do the opposite: find the roots of who you are. Spread them wide. Stand up strong. It’s only then that you’ll know how submission fits around your character and way of life.  If you don’t know yourself intimately, you’ll say yes to anything.

BDSM can be full of light, but that kind of experience can only exist if you choose it. Let it choose you, and you might find yourself crawling into a traumatised ball of tears. Kink isn’t supposed to be a river that washes you away. It’s something you choose consciously and responsibly.

When I stumbled onto D/s, I was so desperate to give my dom everything he wanted that I couldn’t see what I needed. I wanted to offer every ounce of submission, no matter the risk. That’s not submission. It’s compulsion, and it’s no good for you or your dom or any damned one.

People will tell you to slow down. Listen to them.


When you go into the bush, you can travel for days without spotting a single animal. Your eyes aren’t used to the landscape, so everything around you disappears into a million details. Then suddenly you begin to pick out shapes and colours well enough to spot the lion in the grass, the impala at the watering hole, and even the snake up in the trees. The longer you spend in the savannah, the more you see. They call it “bush eyes.”

Kink was like that for me. In the beginning, there were so many kinks and sensations that they all got lost in the landscape. I was so high on sub frenzy that I wanted to do every tiny thing that I stumbled on. Poly? Fuck yes. Needles? Sure. Scarification? Yes, sir. But I had no bush eyes. I was effectively blind to the kinds of play that would traumatise me or put me at risk.

I’m lucky that my dom was selfless enough to hold me back. You might not be that lucky, so sink your roots. Find out how D/s fits into your needs, especially if you’re dealing with chronic illness, mental health issues, and trauma. BDSM can eat you up if you’re not careful. It’s your future top’s right to get your willing consent, and right now, you probably want to say yes to everything. That puts you and your top at risk.

Read all you can about consent. It will keep you safe. Meet other subs. Do classes and play parties before you throw yourself into a D/s relationship. You’ll feel your roots sprout and the ground beneath you become stable. You’ll grow into your limits and learn about everything you shouldn’t do. When kink is a choice you make rather than something that chooses you, you’ll be able to stand strong.

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