Wednesday, 22 October 2008

no limits

In my post below about slavery discussion in the comments turned to limits.

Rose who described herself as a slave still has limits.

sweetmoana writes that she does not hold with "no limits" - that there really are limits in consensual M/s relationships.

I guess I agree with this - though I believe what this means is different in each relationship.

Perhaps a sub can give herself to a Master as a slave with no limits - because she trusts in him not to abuse that power, knowing he would never do anything to harm her.

So is "no limits", "being owned" or "slavery" just a public statement of that trust?

I can understand the seduction as a Dom of desiring that level of trust and commitment.

Limits are often pushed and extended. I have a blogging friend who is "owned". She revels in the fact of her slavery, the demands put upon her and the degradation of her situation. (In her vanilla life she is a self-confident professional woman with a responsible job - she might work in the office next door to you!) At one time she did split from her owner - so clearly she has that freedom - but she returned to him. I have noticed as the relationship has developed how limits that she would never have expected to pass at the start have now happened - if not quite become commonplace. Others are discussed as likely possibilities. She now gets a kick from recognising the possibility of being instructed to do things that she once could not have conceived.

I must admit a little concern about this - partly because I like this person and having seen her change worry a little. She though revels in these changes and her development as a sub. However I worry if it can be an abuse of power for a Dom to use his power over a sub to lead her into areas that she would at first have found very unacceptable. These could be potentially harmful psychologically and professionally. Some have included body modification which whilst not harmful as such are certainly unchangeable.

It is not for me to criticise another couple and I have at different times expressed my concerns directly to her. I am just using this as an example - to ask the question of whether it is acceptable for a Dom to extend the limits of his sub in such a way or whether that is an abuse of the trust that led her to accept "no limits".


Alice said...

J pushes my limits all of the time. We have engaged in many things that were originally inconceivable to me. It is a matter of trust, I know that he would never harm me. We discuss things extensively and I often request going farther. I no longer have stated set limits, yet there are implied limits. Things that neither of us would have an interest in.

The appeal of "no limits" is the completeness of my surrender to him. The affirmation of my trust in him. I enjoy the changes that he has encouraged in me. I feel he has freed me from the constraints of my past and of society. I know he values me and my submission. He has stated that he would never do anything to damage me or jeopardize our relationship. So yes, I suppose it is the public affirmation of my trust.

Pygar said...

Thank you very much Alice for your personal view on this.

At the heart of what you say for me - is the notion of implicit and explicit limits.

If the trust is complete, supported though a loving relationship and the limits are known implicitly then there is perhaps no need for explicit limits.

That then can perhaps give greater freedom to each of you.

Anonymous said...

For the most part, I think D/s couples come to no limits because once every limit has been pushed or even just explored...what else is there? It's almost a natural progression for some long term couples. I'd be wary about going no limits with a Dominant who was only there for the short term. It also depends on the couple and their dynamic too. You can't really question others without fully understanding what they have going on with each other.

I was with my Dom for over a year and during that time (which some would consider short) it did go to no limits, I had reached the level of submission to him that it was almost the next logical step in my service; except it was also something I was craving from him.

When we went to no limits TPE, it was a personal affirmation that my trust in him was so complete that I willingly gave my whole being in care and trust to him. That I truly believed and accepted what he meant by always having my best interests at heart and that he would never let harm come to me by him or anyone else.

Now, looking back on it, I was always safe by one thing, even though I didn't have limits, he still had them for himself. We were talking one day about different types of play etc. and he was explaining in depth why he didn't like some of them. I realized that he would never place me in a position that he would also find undesirable for himself. So as much as I thought I was no limits, I was still protected by his and luckily enough we shared the same hard limits. So in that, I guess the no limits in this case were an illusion but it's as you and alice said, Pygar, it's freeing. I was able to just let go and trust him fully. This allowed him to take me to the very depths of my submission. Something I never would have achieved by keeping limits upon his Dominance. He never once abused that.

In the future, I wouldn't become no limits with anyone again without fully knowing or understanding them. It comes down to the comfort level and trust you feel in a person and for me to go as deep as I did with my submission, I have to be very careful in who I pick to handle that.

I do believe some Dominants (not all) do take advantage of the no limits and the trust involved with it. It's quite the power trip knowing you could make someone do anything and they would happily go ahead with it. To me when limits are being pushed purely for self entertainment on the Dominant's part and there is no personal growth by the sub, then it is a huge breach of trust. Limits should be pushed to empower or better the submissive on some level, they should be able to learn about themselves and their capabilities and in the end be a stronger individual for it.

If a sub or slave feels their trust has been broken by anything, doesn't matter how big or small the infraction on the Dominant's part, they still have the power to say no and leave.


Pygar said...

Thank you emdie for your personal perspective. Yes - it always comes down to trust.

But I was interested in the suggestion that no limits is no limits for the sub - and that the limits become the Dom's. Where there is real trust and care and love then this can imply freedom but ...

... as you also suggest there is danger in the possibility of the Dom abusing such power which was part of the issue I think I was trying to raise in the post.


Anonymous said...

Even when a sub goes no limits, I don't think that gives them a free pass to dump their brains and stop being aware of the environment they are in. I also think, the Dom should still be willing to hear any concerns or questions the "no limit" slave has about the limit being pushed; this would be the opportunity for the Dom to look at themselves and question their own motives. However, there is no way to enforce this and it could even be seen as a limit to even voice a concern, so most slaves may not even bother doing so.

The hard part though is knowing if it is really abuse of trust or the nature of the relationship.

As for the Dom keeping his limits, perhaps it stems from a continuing need to protect the submissive. To look at it from being property stance, he saw no reason to want to damage something he owned and cherished.


Pygar said...

Thanks again emdie.

I think it is essential for a sub to voice her concerns. I don't think that is setting a limit. There needs to be good communication if a Dom is to be aware of the effects his actions are having on his sub. How can he care for her and ensure she comes to no psychological or emotional harm if she does not voice her fears and concerns?

I still worry though that there may be some uncaring Doms out there who are not concerned if they damage their "property" but then just move on to the next leaving a very damaged person behind.


Anonymous said...

I agree that communication is key in almost any relationship, be it kink or vanilla. I'm sure are times though that a sub will overlook their own feelings to keep their Dominant happy and not say anything. That Dominant should be able to read or at least know their sub enough to realize something is amiss when that happens and take the initiative to ask the subs feelings on the matter too. Power exchange is a two way street. However, knowing someone that well takes time.

The so called dominants who leave their subs in psychological damage and just move on to the next victim, in my opinion are not real Dominant Master's. Some people out there are just tops masquerading as such to get what they want. They have no real concept of what it means to own someone as "property" and should be avoided. They all show warning signs at the beginning, subs have to learn to trust their instinct about it.


Anonymous said...

As a no-limits Dom, I disagree with a comment made, that "it's quite the power trip knowing you could make someone do anything and they would happily go ahead with it". On the contrary, it's a tremendous (and frightening) responsibility, which must be taken very very seriously...for another has placed her very life in My care; I sometimes felt as if I held her living, beating heart in My two hands.

As an example, I am fascinated by the mind, and once I was able to take My slave to a mental state which we later named "no-self" (for in that state she had no strong feeling of self, and became the epitome of submission, an empty vessel for Me, an automaton willing to do absolutely anything without question). This was uncharted territory for us both. Complete responsibility for her welfare was, naturally, on Me, yet in this state I felt that I could not protect her mind because I did not know the extents (or the dangers) of that I carefully and gently brought her back to normalcy, and despite My fascination with the "no-self" concept was careful to never take her there again.

Personally, I do not accept limits because I believe in D/s intensity, but I accept that "no limits" is dangerous and no sub should accept "no limits" without absolute faith that her Dom will keep her from harm.

Consider trapeze artists who work without nets. They must have complete faith in their partners, for any slip or misjudgement might mean death. Without that faith, they should find other partners... and so it is with "no limits" D/s.

Is this so unusual? We trust pilots to fly the plane while we sleep and doctors to perform surgery while we are under general anaesthetic. But we wouldn't fly with a pilot without a license or be treated by a doctor without a degree; such documents are independent assertions of their abilities. Unfortunately, subs must decide for themselves; a pity there is no IDCA ("International Dominant Certification Agency")!

Anonymous said...

Hmmm..."no limits", eh? (*cracks knuckles, pulls up sleeves*) Where do I begin?

"Primum non nocere" should be the Dominant's Oath. "No limits" is fine, but it is therefore incumbent upon the Dom to respect the responsibility placed on Him, and never permit the sub to come to harm.

The question, Pygar, of whether is it acceptable for a Dom to extend the limits of his sub, boils down to its essentials thus: has she (or will she) be harmed by such extension(s)? For example, if the body modification that you mentioned is not harmful to her-- in any way, including professionally-- and could not be harmful to her in the future, then I would submit that his action was entirely acceptable.

I believe that true submissives, when linked to true classical Dominants, find their limits "morphing" to conform to those of their Dominants; it's natural.

"No limits" does not mean that sooner or later the sub will be forced to do everything; it means that she will accept anything her Master wishes of her.