We all have it - baggage. The crap that comes from our childhoods that tells us we're not good enough, smart enough, pretty enough. The crap that comes from previous relationships where we weren't "enough" for our partner. We tell ourselves this is why they left. This is why we're alone. This is why we'll never find love. It's also where we tell ourselves we should accept less than great and settle for okay or good enough in a partner.
Here's the deal. In a perfect world, you work on yourself, deal with your baggage, and then find a good partner. But this is the real world which means every relationship we have, we're dealing with our baggage and their baggage. Everyone has baggage - the question is whether you're willing to put it down or keep carrying it with you everywhere you go.
The Baggage is the Crap We Let Ourselves Believe
"Everyone always leave."
"No one ever stays."
"I'm too much - too needy, too emotional, too intense."
"You'll leave too. Everyone does."
I said some variation of that to John Brownstone nearly every day for months.
"I'm okay for a woman my size...I guess."
"I'd feel better if my boobs were perkier, my thighs thinner, my stomach flatter."
"You think I'm beautiful because you're biased."
And I said some variations of that for months on end, too.
I bet it sounds hella familiar to nearly every woman reading this, and it may even sound familiar to some of the men. We all have baggage. Mine stems from being bullied as a child - too smart, too tall, too big, too loud, too much...and not pretty enough for anyone. Then, of course, there are the failed relationships - I was too intimidating, too intense, too needy, too much...and not sexy enough for most.
There are no automatic fixes.
If you think Dominance and submission (D/s) is some kind of cure-all for every relationship woe you've ever had, think again.
But if I find the right Dominant to submit to, all will be well.
Whatever. All it means is that you'll second guess yourself and your Dominant. I tell you as someone who let her own baggage keep my Daddy at arms length for several months.
You are going to bring your baggage with you, regardless of whether you're vanilla or kinky. I've talked to people who are shocked to find out that the kinky lifestyle didn't automatically fix everything. Submissives believe their Dominant can fix them - wrong. A good Dominant will guide you, provide the right atmosphere, and help you as much as possible, but only you can decide if you're willing to let go of your baggage.
Your baggage (your past) can define you or not. I allow it to define me by acknowledging I wouldn't be who I am today without my past. I have no regrets - even when I think of all that I could have done differently. But with help, love, trust, and communication, I've also let a lot of my baggage go. It took time and dedication from Daddy, and we still work on it from time to time. My insecurities and my need for perfection in everything I do are still there, but slowly, so freaking slowly they diminish with each passing day.
It takes trust and communication.
In a D/s relationship, the submissive grants control to the Dominant, right? This should come after plenty of time spent building up trust and constant communication so that you know exactly who and what you're dealing with (on both sides).
If you trust your Dominant to tie you up and beat your ass or blindfold you and strap the Hitachi to you, why don't you trust their words?
We let them do their kinky worst to us physically - and mentally, once you factor in mindfucks. But we don't accept their word when they tell us we're worthy, we're beautiful, we're smart, we're desirable, pick one or all. We doubt their words but crave their actions. Does that makes sense to you?
For me, the mental turnabout came when I finally realized that if "Daddy is always right" and "Daddy is the boss" (okay, maybe he's not always right - no one's perfect, but he's rarely wrong), then questioning the things he said to me was a lack of submission. I was doubting him as my Dominant. If that doesn't stop a submissive cold in their tracks, I don't know what does. To me, choosing to believe what he said about me was an act of submission. The longer I listened to him and the longer I repeated his words to myself, the more I came to believe them.
Just so you know, I still have days when the voices of the past rear their ugly head, but I'm able to push back and ignore them.
We're all human.
Your Dominant is human. There are going to be days when they're cranky or sick. Days when they forget to tell you that you're attractive or worthy - or whatever thing you need to hear from them. It's only a problem if they never tell you good things or if they stop completely. I certainly cut my Daddy a bit of slack when he's sick or when it's been a long day from hell. Dominants are going to have those moments when they're a bit off. It's our job as their submissive to step up and fill the gap. If you need words of encouragement, ask for them. If it's been too long since you've been told something encouraging, say something.
You're human, too. There is no Super Submissive with tights and a cape (unless you're in to that kind of thing). You'll have off days, too. Days when you feel bad about yourself. Days when your mind is in a spiral with thoughts and worries. Your boss will be an asshole. Your kids will lie to you. Someone will get sick. Someone will start an argument. You'll think negative, ugly things about yourself. If you aren't strong enough to let your Dominant know you're spiraling down, hopefully they'll see it and help you. When they do or say something to help you, let them.
Remember when I said Dominants are human? There might be times when they don't see the spiral you're in...you have to find the strength to let them know you need their help, their Dominance to allow you to re-focus. For me, a good spanking fixes everything because then I'm able to step out of my head enough to talk about it. When there's no time or opportunity for that, a quick tug of my hair works wonders.
Only you can decide if you're willing to lay your baggage to the side or insist on carrying it with you always. A D/s relationship won't "fix" you or your life. Whatever relationship problems you had in the vanilla world will follow you into the kinky world, too. But you can choose to accept the help a good Dominant provides in lifting you up and helping you see the good in yourself as a part of your submission. At the end of it all, you must be strong enough to release your own demons and put down your baggage - your Dominant can't do that for you.
**For the record, most of this only applies in long-term, loving D/s relationships. If anyone has insight into different types of relationships - play partners, etc - I'd be interested in your perspective.**