Day 22: What do you think is important in keeping a BDSM relationship healthy? How does it differ from a vanilla relationship?
Communication. Everything about BDSM seems to be about communication from both sides. If you’re trusting your life, mental health and physical safety to another human being (or accepting the responsibility of someone else’s life, mental health and physical safety) you have to be self aware and honest with yourself and your partner.
I don’t think this differs from vanilla relationships.
One mode of communication between Dominants and submissives that personally appeals to me is where a submissive is encouraged to keep a journal the Dominant has access to. This can be an online, private journal/blog or a physical journal.
There’s a bookbinder on Etsy who makes journals that would be make excellent sub journals, dragosh. Every journal is unique and is made to your specifications. (They’re also leather-bound, so you get the leather fetish as a bonus, as well.)
Regular journaling as a mode of communication is attractive because it keeps you both focused on the relationship—on both what’s going well so you’re not only thinking about the negative, but also how to improve whatever needs working on. It allows those who are uncomfortable expressing their emotions a more relaxed atmosphere in which to lay down their thoughts, as well as gives the reader/responder time to digest what the other person thinks. In verbal conversation, we often formulate our answers rather than listen to the other person, so having their words on the page in front of us to read through more than once, if necessary, is useful.
Regular journaling will also give you a document of your growth as a submissive and as a D/s couple that you’ll be able to look back on and see how far you’ve come, what you’ve learned and whathaveyou. For those days when maybe you’re not feeling very submissive or you’re failing as a Dominant/submissive.