Tag Archives: Examples

Topping from the Bottom: 3 Examples to Avoid

What does “Topping from the Bottom” really mean? Ever since the book 50 Shades Freed made the phrase popular, the meaning has become somewhat cloudy. In BDSM, the definition of “Topping from the Bottom” (or “Below”) is when a submissive starts to become more of the dominant in the relationship.  I’m going to show you three examples of topping from the bottom, and what both the Dom and sub can do to fix it.

But first, you may be wondering: Why does it even happen?

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What does Topping from the Bottom mean for the relationship?

Topping from below sometimes happens subconsciously but it can also be done on purpose.  It’s a lot like using reverse psychology, and can turn the tables of control without the Dominant realizing it. 

Usually the submissive is the most to blame for this manipulation, but the Dom is equally at fault when they allow it to happen.  I admit that I have topped from below before, and it can be a hard habit to break in a relationship.

Examples of Topping From the Bottom in real life (not the book 50 Shades Freed):

While 50 Shades Freed may have made the phrase a flirtatious cliche, TFTB can actually cause serious problems in a relationship. Here are three to watch out for:

1.  Being a constant brat on purpose

Some Doms like their sub a little bratty every once in a while.  There’s nothing wrong with that.  It can keep things interesting.  Where it becomes a problem is when a sub is routinely a brat, using the behavior to lash out.

Instead of a way to be more playful, it becomes the main way to receive attention and to get what they need.  Needless to say, it can irritate the Dom and make them want to give up.

What the submissive can do:

If you genuinely want more attention or feel that your needs aren’t getting met, speak up!  As long as it’s done respectfully there is nothing wrong with communicating what you want.

For example, I’ve acted out before after a hard day just to get in trouble.  I know this will get me that stress-relieving spanking I so desperately need.  I’ve learned though that it’s so much better to say,  “Daddy, I’ve had a hard day.  Can you please spank me?”

It makes him happy and so much more aware of my feelings.  And the next time he sees me stressed he knows exactly what I need.

If you’re not comfortable speaking up, you can also write your feelings in a journal (either online or in a book) that your Dom can read.

What the Dom can do:

When you catch your sub being bratty, try to figure out if they’re just acting out for attention.  Remember: this isn’t 50 Shades Freed, so instead of just immediately turning to discipline, ask your sub what’s really going on.  If you sense they’re upset, give them permission to talk.

Encourage them to maybe use an “I statement”, a phrase where they say, “I feel X when you do Y, and I’d rather you do Z.”  Also, having your sub kneel while you talk to them about their unacceptable bratty behavior can put them back in their place.

2.  Safewording… without really meaning it

Let me start off by saying that there is nothing wrong with using safewords.  They are a sacred part of BDSM, and are there to make sure everything stays safe, sane, and consensual.  A sub should never feel guilty when they use them legitimately.

The problem arises when it becomes a way to get out of something they just don’t want to do.  It can become the vanilla equivalent of saying they have a headache.

Besides sexual requests, they may use a safeword when a situation becomes emotionally difficult and they just want a break.  The sub becomes the one in control when they safeword because they just don’t feel like doing something.

What the sub can do:

Before you safeword, ask yourself if you’re just trying to avoid doing something.  If you were to meet your Dom’s demands would it really incur physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, or other harm?  If not, safewording in that instance would be dishonest and could lead to a break in trust.

Remember that topping from the bottom in this way isn’t playing fair. If there are things that you absolutely will not do, make sure to include them in a contract. Click here for some examples.

What the Dom can do:

If your sub safewords, remember that it means they are close to their limit of endurance, or they cannot tolerate any further demands.  Always respect their safeword even if you believe it isn’t genuine.  Your actions should cease completely with immediate effect.

Afterwards, if you do believe the safeword was used casually, tell your sub.  Remind them of the real purpose of BDSM safewords and that misusing them will break your trust.  This firm lecture will probably be enough to put them back in their place.

3.  Saying, “Well, actually I think…” or a similar phrase

When a Dom makes a decision it should stand.  A sub from time to time can voice their opinion respectfully when necessary, but routinely getting a Dom to change their mind will only  hurt the relationship.  This can happen in many different areas.

Some examples include the Dom wanting to have sex in a certain position, but the sub suggests another one instead.  Or he wants to book reservations at a particular restaurant, but she says she’d rather go to a different one. When this happens and the Dom gives in, it shifts the control in the relationship.

What the sub can do:

When your Dom makes a decision, don’t undermine it.  Even if it’s not what you were wanting that doesn’t matter.  Your role is to please your Dom.  If it’s something you really disagree with you can let them know respectfully.

Another option is to ask them afterwards if next time you can do your choice, or voice your feelings in a journal book.  Remember:  this isn’t 50 Shades Freed. You are in a real BDSM relationship, and they are your Dominant.  Topping from below will only erode that.

What the Dom can do:

When your sub says, “Well, actually I think…”, or a similar phrase, listen to their suggestion, but then let them know that you are the Dom and you make the decisions.  Of course they are not always going to act perfectly or by the book, but tell them that this behavior is below your standards.

When they do go along with what you want make sure to give them praise.  It is OK to give your sub choices every once in a while, but do not make it a habit of yielding to them.

Remember that regularly topping from the bottom brings manipulation into BDSM, and can mean there are underlying issues in the relationship.  Life isn’t 50 Shades Freed. So review these examples, stay focused in your role as a Dom or sub, and the power and control will remain healthy. 🖤

What’s your definition of the phrase Topping from the Bottom?  Chat with me in the comments below.

Keep reading: 9 Signs of a Fake Dom >>

BDSM Rituals and Why You Need Them

Rituals are an important part of any healthy BDSM relationship. They help the Dominant and submissive remember their roles, and can be a way to stay centered and focused. But creating powerful and easy Dom/sub rituals (that don’t fizzle out) can be challenging.  Read on to discover proven examples of D/s rules and protocols, and maybe pick up some new ideas to transform your connection.

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What are BDSM rituals?

Sometimes people will use the words rituals, rules, and protocols interchangeably but they are slightly different. A BDSM protocol is a hard and fast rule usually listed in a D/s contract. A ritual is more of a way of carrying out something. It almost always involves an action where the Dom prescribes a series of behaviors for their pleasure and benefit.

Why have Dom/sub rituals?

Rituals are a way to discipline a sub.  They teach them obedience and submission and keep them in the right frame of mind.  This is true for the Dom as well.  Sometimes if a sub has been allowed to act too bratty or is topping from the bottom, a ritual can snap both parties back into their role.

I really enjoy my rituals and view them as almost solemn and spiritual.  When I perform a ritual it feels somewhat ceremonial even.  I take pleasure in knowing I’m doing something my Daddy wants and that makes him happy.

Examples of D/s rituals, rules, and protocols

Rituals are automatic and a good sub shouldn’t have to be asked to do it every time. If a sub does forget (they’re not perfect) they should be disciplined to the proper degree.  A good Dom doesn’t make up rituals just for the sake of having one.  There should be a reason for them and should be for their pleasure. To give you some ideas, here are a few examples of the rules and protocols my Daddy has for me:

1. Kneeling

My Daddy usually goes to bed before me since he wakes up early, so once I’m all ready for the night, I sit in the bed next to him and kneel.  If he doesn’t wake up by then I will lightly rub him and say, “I’m ready for bed now, Daddy.”  If he hasn’t gone to bed yet I’ll kneel on the floor instead and wait for permission to get in bed.  He also has me kneel before a scene as well.

2. Arrival greeting

This is another popular ritual and one I can safely perform in front of others.  When he comes home, wherever I am in the house and no matter what I’m doing, I go and greet him with a kiss and tell him, “Hi Daddy”.

3. A morning text

My Daddy decided on the joint ritual of every morning texting each other.  He usually texts me first to tell me good morning and that he loves me.  I reply with how I’m feeling, a detailed plan for my day, and that I love him.  I love waking up and seeing a text from him, and this also allows him to make sure I’m getting up when I’m supposed to.

4. Collars

There are so many ways to incorporate collars with rituals.  Currently we have two.  The first one is I have to wear my Day Collar whenever I leave the house or around company.  If he’s home he will put it on for me.  Second, when I kneel before a scene he puts my Play Collar on me. See ideas for different collars here.

5. Shaving

Sometimes in vanilla relationships, shaving becomes a chore that’s done begrudgingly even though the other partner prefers it.  Making it a D/s ritual can make it more enjoyable.  I always make sure I’m freshly shaven for my Daddy, and I also get a Brazilian wax about every 3 weeks.  (As a masochist, I actually love getting it done.)

6. Punishments

You probably don’t think of punishments when you’re discussing rituals, but they can actually go together quite nicely.  When the sub misbehaves, the Dom can tell them to get whatever implement they choose (belt, flogger, crop, etc.). The sub has to go get it, kneel, and present it in their hands, with their palms facing up.  This can make the discipline more degrading, and as a result, more effective.

Can Doms have BDSM rituals too?

Yes and no.  Doms will do certain actions as a routine but they are never expected to do it, as they are allowed to do whatever they want.  An example is how my Daddy opens doors for me.  Before I get in the car or enter a building he will almost always open the door for me, and it makes me love and respect him as my Dom even more each time.  Other ideas are combing or braiding the sub’s hair at night, ordering for them at restaurants, and staying on the outside of their sub when they’re walking on the street.

When a D/s ritual isn’t working

It may be that after performing certain rituals they will have to be modified or eliminated.  Here’s an example that happened to us one time:

Every morning when Daddy was at work I had to let him decide my panties for the day.  I’d pick out three, lay them in a row, take a picture, and text it to him. This was fun at first and I did it for almost a month.  It ended up causing me a lot of stress though.  There were many mornings I would have to rush because it was taking up too much time.  I told my Dom, knowing full well he could say, “You’re doing it anyway.” But instead, he said he would think about it and let me know the next day. Thankfully he told me I could stop. He still makes choices on my panties from time to time, and will often tell me to wear none when I’m in a dress or skirt.

So if a ritual isn’t working in a D/s dynamic, a sub can always talk to their Dom about it respectively, or through a journal.

Click here to download your free journal with prompts

One of the best ways to make sure a ritual is remembered and carried out is to write it down.  Hopefully these examples have given you some ideas for creating your own BDSM rules and protocols.  Keep finding peace in your rituals. They benefit both the Dom and the sub and are essential for transformation, training, and discipline.  🖤

Now, let’s talk in the comments: What ideas do you have for BDSM rituals? What works and what doesn’t?

Keep reading: How to prevent bratty behavior>>

BDSM Limits: Learn What’s Hard and Soft

Limits are a topic that is sure to come up in any Dom/sub relationship or contract negotiation. Even if you don’t have a BDSM partner yet, it’s good to have your boundaries clear in mind so you’ll be prepared when you’re ready to start playing. But what exactly is the difference between hard and soft limits? Here, we’ll define what limits can mean for you, and I’ll even give you some examples.

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Why have limits in BDSM?

Having limits while engaging in BDSM allows the submissive to explore their sensuality safely.  They never have to be afraid that their Dom is going to do something they don’t want, or will hurt them physically or mentally.  They can give up all control, and be free from making the decisions. Dominants benefit from set rules also because it takes the guess-work out of what their sub will and won’t do. Both individuals will be able to completely let go, and fully enjoy living the lifestyle.

There are two kinds of limits- soft vs hard:

Soft

These are things that the sub maybe interested in but is hesitant about exploring.  You cannot assume that just because someone has agreed to be a submissive that they are OK with everything. The boundaries of soft limits are flexible as the Dom sees fit and the submissive agrees to push and expand slowly.  However, once something has been decided upon (hopefully in a contract) it can be freely asked or demanded.  Get your free Dom/sub contract here.

Some examples are: oral sex, swallowing semen, nipple clamps, spanking, flogging, being blindfolded, butt plugs, gagging, wax play, and bondage with tape.

Another soft limit is the sub’s tolerance of receiving pain, which can be worked up slowly and with consent.  Light bruises might be acceptable and tolerable, but permanent scars or marks may not be. Always discuss what types of pain, punishments, and discipline are allowed, and the intensity and severity of each.

Hard

Both parties need to specify what they won’t do, and respect it.  Examples could be things like: choking, anal sex, electro play, fisting, needles, suspension bondage, whipping, caning, fire play, and blood/urine/feces. Doms can have boundaries too.  The point is, no one should be pressured to do something that they are uncomfortable with.

Limits can change over time, and some can be more fluid than others.  For example, a sub may only be comfortable with something like rimming on some occasions, but their Dom has to ask first.  And sometimes boundaries can soften in the presence of alcohol, but even so, the Dom should always make sure the sub really wants to and is giving their full consent.

Dom/sub requirement limits

Requirements are not always talked about online when discussing the subject of limits but they deserve to be mentioned. These would be things that a partner has to have. It could be, “I need you to pull my hair when we have sex in doggie style.”  Or, “If a punishment makes me cry, good aftercare is a must.”  Get your free aftercare checklist here.

Remember: Safewords can help establish limits too. If a couple is exploring something new like anal play, safewords can help guide the Dom as to what is acceptable and what is too far.  One of the roles of a good Dom is to push the boundaries of their sub a little, to see what they are and aren’t OK with.

What to do if limits aren’t respected

If boundaries aren’t respected it really depends on the situation and the individuals involved. Sometimes for a seemingly minor offense the Dom could be warned never to do that again. But for more major breaches of trust, submissive always has the power to terminate the relationship.  And it’s always a good idea to discuss beforehand the consequences of breaking a contract.

So as you can see, limits are for the benefit of everyone involved, and are in no way restrictive.  To make it easier for you, try creating a list, either by yourself or with your partner.  Ultimately this will bring more pleasure and trust to the relationship. 🖤

What are your feelings on limits? Share your hard and soft list below.

Read more about etiquette in the lifestyle »