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Archivist: Ketzele, devoted slave of Will Brame
This week's topic is AFTERCARE: that period following SM/fetish play when the sub receives some form of tender ministration, whether hugs, or comforting conversation, or other types of nurturing, from the dominant/top.
To get you going, here are some questions to consider.
First, is aftercare important to you, personally? And if it is, does your partner know and feel the same?
Second, if you had to choose, which would you prefer
Next--do you think everyone needs aftercare? If so, what do you think are some of the perils of not getting the nurturing you need?
Do you have any advice to novices or others who don't quite understand the importance of aftercare? Is this, for example, something all BDSMers should expect to be a regular part of their relationship? Why?
Professor Gloria, ready to take answers.... :-)
Hey Glory. Long time no see.
How about the perspective of changing needs in aftercare?
For the first few years, I was pretty needy after a scene, and Frank was great about providing it. But over the years, we've really changed from a nurturing dom/sub couple to a more using type master/slave type of thing.
Sometimes it comes back to bite him in the ass [g], but more often than not, it works.
It feels very different to me -- it's more like he's taking care of his toy now than needing to glue me back together after a heavy-duty scene. Before, after-care was lots of encouragement, words of praise, cuddles. And now, it's more matter of fact, practical, colder? maybe.
Lisa (Frank says hi btw)
Well hey, Lisa! How have you guys been?? What a nice surprise to find your message here.
So how do you feel about this gradual transition from the more cuddle-intensive aftercare to this stage? Is colder better, worse, or just not something you can compare, because your own needs have changed?
By the way...folks here might be interested to know that you and Frank were both interviewed in DifLove. I've always wondered how many of the couples we interviewed way back in 1991 are still together. You and Frank must be going on 10 yrs now...or more?
p.s. how are the kiddies?
As I have just recently re-learned, aftercare is very important, regarless of how heavy the scene, regardless of whether the sub or slave is orbiting at 12 miles above the stratosphere or not. IM*N*SHO it should be a regular part of every scene. while I have always done some form of aftercare with gloria, we had reached a point where *I* was comfortable with where we were, what we were doing..it had become normal. gloria rarely "flys" the same way other slaves do, she is very much present for the entire scene and would always recoup rather quickly. My aftercare with her became less involved and much quicker in duration. when she recently told me that she was jealous in seeing the aftercare that I provided with others that I play with it made me stop and think. Aftercare is once again to me not just bringing the slave "down" nor is it just to tend to bruises, cuts and abrasions. In a much larger sense its a re-assurance that the Dom still fully appreciates the slave for providing the field on which he or she plays and the canvass on which they express themselves. Yes, its much easier to be reminded by a slave that is limp in the chains that she will need aftercare, but its just as important to the sub who is still as present mentally, physically and emotionally as when the scene began.....and in my case, even more so
Yup, we just celebrated 10 years married -- going strong, though the relationship has changed over the years.
>>>So how do you feel about this gradual transition from the more cuddle-intensive aftercare to this stage? Is colder better, worse, or just not something you can compare, because your own needs have changed?
Most of the time, that colder dynamic reinforces the sort of object-space he likes to put me in these days. I often feel like a toy he's putting away for the night, or a wind-up toy he's setting off for work if we've been playing in the morning.
>>>I've always wondered how many of the couples we interviewed way back in 1991 are still together.
Me too! We recently did an interview on eyada with Bob B. as a semi-follow-up to that old interview in DifLove, and it was a hoot. Made me wonder a lot how the other couples were doing, and how they've changed.
Kids are good -- 16 and 13 now. Frank's counting the days 'til he can keep me chained in the corner and not have to let me out to be Mom [g].
We both keep journals online, for some night when you're both totally bored and feeling slightly masochistic [g].
Lessons Learned: Notes from 10 years out: http://www.section12.com/users/lisa_s12/
I've kept up on all your books, and wander to the website periodically. Will's clamps look especially wicked. Glad to see the discussion board taking off!
Lisa (you wouldn't recognize me tho -- I've lost a ton of weight since that Real Personal spot we did long ago!)
...some really great questions and comments already on this topic.
I have to applaud Justin's comment (see post #4, this thread) about maintaining "...reassurance that the dom still fully appreciates the slave" because it's really a succinct explanation of why aftercare is such an important detail. Even in cases of objectification (such as poignantly expressed in Lisa's post, directly above), clear communication that the dominant is 'happy' with whatever's occurred is an important dynamic for long-term relationship success. (Way to go, Lisa and Frank; I love your sites, by the way.)
Sure, things evolve naturally in ANY relationship. Things that were 'special' at the start become 'common' (or even neglected). Words that were once spoken often become omitted without much thought or effort. Details that were once fresh and exciting become expected parts of the 'landscape'. All of those things are perfectly natural parts of 'growing together'. But when a lifestyle dominant loses sight of ANY of the deep needs of a lifestyle submissive, trust and devotion will slowly begin to erode. In my opinion (IMO) therefore, AFTERCARE should NEVER be one of those things allowed to lapse...even if it ends up being nothing more than the obligatory clean-up, but with at least a sincere expression of appreciation for the pleasure that was enjoyed. (Even "Wham" and "Bam" are at least followed by a courteous "Thank you, Maam.")
Seriously, my own philosophy has always been to do a full and organized assessment in order to apply the aftercare elements needed. As has been well said, not everyone needs the same styles or elements for a wide variety of reasons. An organized assessment, from my view as a dominant, is simply my own way of KNOWING which styles or elements to apply to a specific case. For brevity, I won't go into each step I personally use, but suffice it to say that a head-to-toe check for physical needs as well as talking to the submissive (and carefully listening to responses) to check for emotional needs are what I consider to be a minimal personal standard for ensuring safety and welfare. After sizing up the specific situation, I address any issues that need to be (in any way they need to be addressed). Then and only then do I go into a 'post scene' phase myself. (That statement should tell you that I strongly consider aftercare to be an element that's PART of the scene.)
I'll close my post by saying that PERSONALLY, it's also a period of great connectivity for me. Holding someone close to me...and expressing my joy in them...to them...and seeing the devotion and love in their eyes...is a very fulfilling and powerful thing to me. For any novices reading this and considering what elements they will find important in THEIR bdsm relationships, I hope you will somehow gain, maintain, and sustain the value that aftercare is an essential ingredient in the meal known as depravity. It's not just dessert...it's part of the main faire. <wink>
Be safe. T
Hi Glory and Board......
I have not had all that much experience but I will say that from what I have had, aftercare is very important to me. Having as many self doubts as I do, this is a time where I can be reassured that I pleased the Dom that I was with.
I have also realized that a day or two after a scene is probably when I need the most care and reassurance. Glory has reassured me that this time can also be considered aftercare. The other thing that I have realized is that the time right after scening and the next few days is the time that I seem to be able to be the most open in how I feel, what I am needing, what my fears are and all of that. If I am not able to express myself I crawl right back into my shell.
I am hoping that someday I do better in that area but I have a feeling that It will take one patient and loving Master to help me SP5x1 this.
As far as which do I think I need more of, well to be honest, at this point in my exploration I think I need both in equal amounts. Ummmmm does that make me needy, greedy, or perhaps just me <smiling>
Hi all and Happy Holidays,
This is a very important topic... and is very important to me as a sub. Aftercare is extremely important to me, as it gives me the reassurance that my Dom not only loves me, but also enjoyed our play. I will say that he is not particularly good at aftercare... as his tendency (or preoccupation) is to take care of the toys, cleaning and putting them away, which can take too long and I have the feeling of aloneness and abandonment. We've talked a lot about it, and he takes the time to cuddle and hug me for awhile in bed but it is still not always long enough. Then sometimes, he goes into the living room and watches a movie, which makes it even more lonely...
Aftercare to me, gives me the recognition that he is there with me to the end, whatever that is... however long that takes... we talk about it, and it improves, so that's my opinion.
During and after a scene, Master is the only real solid link i have to the earth. i'm oblivious to everything except him and the sensations he brings. (The first time we played at a party, he held me after the scene, i opened my eyes and looked over his shoulder and said, "Sh**! People!" - i had forgotten they were there.) So it's very important to me that he maintain contact, through touch or voice or whatever. He generally wraps me in a blanket and pets and holds me, and talks to me in that wonderfully deep, rich voice of his. He keeps me warm, he keeps me grounded, and in doing that he reinforces the knowledge that he *is* there for me, and that he loves and cherishes me. It's an integral part of the dynamic between the two of us.
Are Doms every in need of aftercare? If so when? How is it performed? Why? Merry Christmas to the subs and Doms. To the nilla's to the neopolitines.
Its amazing how in the morning or late evening after a very intense period of play, or evening, M holds me as I sleep and is so gentle, the complete opposite of what I saw just hours before - he is so sweet, gentle and loving. He always brings me coffee and a newspaper in the mornings while he works across the hall in the early mornings - its my time to relax - and its so peaceful after our morning of tenderness - he says it is the gentle heart of the lion after he has roared.
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Dr. Gloria Glickstein Brame
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