The Submissive’s Paradox is a name I gave to a phenomenon that must be familiar to many subs, particularly those in F/m relationships. It involves dealing with one of the toughest, and nuanced, aspects of being Submissive: denial of orgasm. It the most potent and powerful tool in the Domme’s armoury and the underlying dynamic to most D/s F/m interactions.
I should point out here, I am not talking about long term chastity, which is entirely a different order of magnitude. This is the short-term denial of orgasm for unspecified number of days to exercise control and, in the case of my Domme, to achieve her arousal at my frustration. Because I know she also enjoys the conferring of permission to come, it is unlikely to stretch into weeks. But double-digit days would not be unheard of.
So why the paradox? Well, the denial itself obviously causes me frustration at my inability to come when I want. But the fact she has ordered it means, by abstaining from coming, I am pleasing her. This in turn pleases me, as a submissive. So the act of orgasm denial simultaneously pleases and frustrates me. QED.
I realised quite early on that I needed to master control of this paradox if I was going to get the most out of being a submissive for Her. If you simply gnash, wail and howl at the moon at the cognitive dissonance, then being submissive will be hard work for you. You have to learn to ‘lean in’ to it. To manage it. Even, yes, enjoy it. At least if you want to have a normal life outside your D/s role play.
Figuring out how to do that was quite an emotional journey that made me discover depths that I didn’t realise I had, levels of control I’d assumed were beyond me and improved the quality of the orgasms I did have. I found denial was like a wild horse – it would throw you off a lot, but eventually you learned to ride it. Some days I was so sure I was on top of it, only to find myself reduced to a gibbering wreck at the prospect of unexpected desire. Because for the most part it is like sitting next to a big red button that says DO NOT PRESS. At first you learn to pretend the button isn’t there, then you reach a point where you don’t see the button. Until you reach the stage where you say ‘Look at that button. It’s so much more fun not pressing it until I am allowed to’. Passing through denial and acceptance into enjoyment.
How does that work in practice? Most days I’ll wear a cage, which is a symbolic reminder of Her control. (I self manage the lock, so it’s not a physical deterrent – see my post on cock cages for more.) What the cage does is to provide a very physical reminder of your commitment, and is a physical weight to carry around as much as a psychological one. On occasions when I feel strongly the urge to come I’ll sit quietly and relax, legs apart slightly. I’ll concentrate on the weight of the cage and ring, feel it increasingly heavy, as an immobilising force and how that represents Her authority and control. Pretty soon it feels like I’m bolted to the chair – like a steel beam has pinioned me in my place. I’m helpless. I can’t move. My only choice is to submit. I close my eyes and mentally utter a submission, and feel a physical falling away of the desire and the need, almost trance like. If practised this can also transform into a form of arousal, though without necessarily all the symptoms presenting, though some may. And then you can carry on with your day, slightly floaty. It’s nice.
Which brings us to the second aspect of the Sub’s Paradox – if orgasm denial is nice, doesn’t coming ruin the enjoyment? Self evidently not. Orgasms are ALWAYS nicer in my personal opinion. (As I say, this is NOT about chastity living, which gives a different take on this altogether.) Because if they weren’t, then there would be no need to manage denial. They’d stop being a tool of control for the Domme. Nevertheless there is a kernel of truth in this nut of nonsense.
When permission to come is granted, there is, of course, an overwhelming desire to release hastily, like a hungry man gorging on his dinner. But, equally, it is delicious to savour the moment. I can come, but I’m holding out, I can enjoy arousal with no consequences. Edging then becomes a source of extending that pleasure, not denying yourself in frustration. As you build towards climax that feeling of ‘I want this to end / I don’t want this to end’ becomes even more intense. To want to come and not want to come at the same time. Schrödinger’s Orgasm.
But of course you do. And it begins all over again. Denial and control of the Sub’s Paradox gave me the skills to enjoy the spaces in between the coming. That, in turn, transform the orgasms into more intense experiences. Because the light has no meaning without the darkness. Yin and Yang. Denial reinforces the orgasm, making all life richer in the end.
“All the variety, the charm and the beauty of life is made up of light and shadow”
Tolstoy, Anna Karenina.