Aftercare is a very important concept within BDSM and an uttermost necessity. Aftercare is, to me, not just the cuddles, getting fluids or providing a blanket. It is also the occasion where the dominant and submissive pick up the experience of the scene/training that they have done together. Aftercare means rationalisation and putting words to the things that are unsaid or felt.

BDSM creates strong emotions, especially when you take the power away from someone, and these emotions might not be obvious when you do the scene, they might emerge days afterwards; a feeling of emptiness, humiliation, loneliness etc. And good BDSM always creates strong emotions, but good BDSM becomes even better if the emotions are understood and put on the table – The feelings that the scene invoked needs to be understood. This is were the role of the dominant also becomes very important. As a dominant you have to push the submissive to work through the emotional response.

It’s not uncommon after a harsh BDSM session that the submissive shuts herself/himself down in terms of internal processing – And this needs to be done in most cases. But the shutdown cannot go on forever and as a dominant you need to get the submissive back into processing mode. When the processing starts then there is a lot of emotions that might be coming through. The dominant needs to pick these up and make something out of it if the submissive hasn’t done this already – The dominant provides an alternative interpretation of things. Its also not very uncommon that the dominant gets the blame for everything that is going on  – It is the dominant that has put the submissive in the position he or she is in.

The blame is something the dominant has to withstand – With care. It’s very important to stay calm and look rationally at the anger being put on the dominant. If the dominant starts to put prestige inti things or take everything personally then that will definitely kill the aftercare process.

The first sign of a dominant being put on the blame spot or an internal thought process that is stuck on the submissive’s side is usually when comments like “You don’t understand what I am saying” or “You don’t understand me” are uttered. This is where the dominant has to stay calm – The main concern of the dominant in this case as the giver of aftercare is to make the submissive understand herself/himself.

Not any of these things are easy and it is treacherous waters to navigate and it can create a lot of insecurities, but the dominant needs to create a stable foundation, a platform for discussion and analysis.

In the end it is all about communication…


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