I admit it. I'm curious. I read the 50 Shades books last summer like almost every other woman in America. And before then i've never once thought of myself as submissive. Bitch on wheels, yes. But submissive..not so much.
Back to the books. Regardless of what you thought of the writing (personally..it was terrible), it brought a somewhat taboo and misunderstood subject into the mainstream. And I think that is a very good thing. It made me curious for sure. And I have a tendency to do my research when intrigued.
Thankfully I had someone I could turn to for first-hand knowledge. I work with an
experienced sub who was in the lifestyle for years. She gave me very good information and she read the books too and told me what was real and what was unrealistic. She lead me to some very good websites for information and told me of her experiences.
Finally, I had to break out on my own. I joined a "lifestyle" site and made contact with some Doms. I was nervous, excited, even scared. My friend had told me what to ask to help me separate the fakes from the real Doms. But still, it was nervewracking. However,.. I was fortunate and I met some truly nice people who were willing to answer my questions. I made more friends and close contacts there than I had on AM actually.
I vividly remember stammering, stuttering and almost hyperventilating when I first called someone "Sir." I also remember the immediate almost gushing response when I first heard the words, "Good girl." D/s, BDSM, TTWD or however you refer to it, isn't all about the leather, whips, chains, pain or humiliation as portrayed in porn or misguided mainstream media. It's the amazing trust and the level of communication between the person to whom you CHOOSE to gift your submission that appeals to me most.
From my limited research, these relationships are based in trust and very close communication. The submissives are in charge and permit their Dom/mes to help them explore their limits safely, sane and consensually. When it works, I think it can be a rare and amazing thing. And isn't that what we're all searching for, really?
I hope you find it on whatever avenue you're wandering tonight.