Because BDSM is not just spankings and kinky sex.
Do you include service as a part of your expectations of your submission? How do you define service? What does it mean to you? If not, what is it about the concept of service that is not for you?
The first time I saw service submission was on the film, Secretary. In the opening scene, Lee Holloway makes coffee, fetches the mail and staples it, all while locked in a spreader bar. I watched that scene with an equal mix of confusion and horror. I mean, why? Is that what this lifestyle would be like? I wasn’t keen on that. I liked the romantic theme of Secretary, the loving, the caring and the protecting, but that was all.
In another example, I saw a “service bottom” on a Channel 4 documentary. The bottom scrubbed the Dominatrix’s toilet with his toothbrush and he did her ironing in a sissy maid outfit. I couldn’t understand it at all, is that what it would be like?
For a long time, I struggled with the idea of being of service and I rejected it wholeheartedly. I would never be that submissive, I argued, if my Dominant wanted a coffee, he’d have to go get it his damn self. I’d sit at events, cross-armed and stubborn as I watched other submissives follow their Dominants every beck and call. I was envious of their dynamics, but not so envious that I was about to give up on who I was. They complied, and I would not, I told myself.
Nope. No way, I could never be THAT good.
The turning point for me really was T. T saw what I didn’t have in my marriage, and he wanted to give me that. I was putting married life ahead of myself, and T wanted to give me to put myself first in future. T gave me a list of things that I could do to look after myself, some simple, and not so much. They varied from brushing my teeth, right down to going into town for a professional haircut.
One of the things I started to do for T was swim. I’d do my stanard 500 metres, and he’d convince me to do 100 more. 4 lengths of the pool, he’d remind me, he was sure that I could do it.
And just for him, I did.
I’d get out of the pool with a sense of pride. I’d be smiling widely, even if nobody understood the reason. I couldn’t wait to get on the bus and tell T that I’d done as he asked. I felt different- I felt accomplished, loved and safe.
When T and I broke up, what really needed to stay in my dynamic was tasks. I needed things to do, things to give me purpose besides being a housewife. I craved them, but I needed the feeling of doing what somebody wanted me to do, of doing whatever would make them happy. It wasn’t just about sex and bondage, I concluded, I had that desire to make my Dominant proud. I had a need and a desire to serve, after all!
From that point, daily task lists became a feature of my marriage. Every morning on his way to work, Matt would send me a list of the things he wanted me to accomplish by the end of the day. They were never overtly sexual, though they were always to do with our relationship or our dynamic. I’d have to eat lunch, make the bed, tidy a room or two, write in my journal and maybe, just sometimes, I’d get to pleasure myself. For a while we kept an ‘orgasm diary’ of my fantasies, but Matt began to worry that he wasn’t enough for me, so that stopped.
Today, we no longer have task lists but the ‘expectations’ remain instead. It’s just expected of me that I will make coffee in the morning and it’s expected of me that I will run the home while Matt works. Anytime Matt mentions something that needs doing, I endeavour to have it done that day, or at least later that day. Anything that needs doing, I’m expected to report and anything we need to buy, I’m expected to tell Matt that, too. I have my own money, but if I try to keep the home running on my own pocket and without asking for financial help, I’ll end up in trouble.
In and of BDSM itself, it’s my job to prepare the room for a session, it’s my job to tidy up afterwards and it’s my job to clean anything that needs to be cleaned and to put it away. We have a rule that the only time I can touch the toys without permission is when I’m cleaning and maintaining them. Anything else carries consequences.
Being in service nos makes up quite a large component of our dynamic and yet, the way that I am now in service is completely different to how I first imagined it would be. “Service” can take many forms, and it can be as loving or as degrading as you both desire. I don’t have any uniforms to wear or anything special to do, and for as long as I don’t trump out to the kitchen in a mood or slam a mug of coffee on Matt’s desk, that’s all that really matters. None of the tasks I have to do are degrading or pointless and none are made more difficult than they need to be. Matt knows that if he asks me to do something, then even in spite of the attitude, it will nearly always get done. I may be feisty and difficult to handle sometimes, but he also knows I will always do as I’m told.
Just about 😉