I’m a 28 year old female and identify as a bedroom sub because occasionally I’ll play around with D/s in bed. My problem is that I’ve been playing with a more serious Dom off and on and I’m kind of starting to catch feelings. He’s been really specific that this is casual play but sometimes he’ll say in a scene that I belong to him and whatnot and my heart jumps a little. I would definitely be really happy if he wanted to date beyond casual hookups but I also don’t mind the casual thing. What do you do when your feelings get in the way of an easy situation??

So first of all I should outline for the scandalized vanilla reader that this kind of talk about ownership during a scene is perfectly routine. I know what you’re thinking though, “How unclear of him to say she belongs to him but then insist on causal play!” I know. But the contract of D/s is that the Dom owns you for an agreed upon duration and in negotiated ways. Whether you’re collared for life or for the evening, power exchange blooms out of this acknowledgment of ownership. But yes, I completely understand your dilemma. There you are, drooling around your ball gag, giddy from a good beating, being held by this guy you’re attracted to, and you’re not NOT going to feel a little frisson of something. That’s human nature. So you’re going to feel it. What do you do? As I see it you have two choices. There’s the classic BDSM approach, which is not whips and chains but COMMUNICATION. Talk to him about it. But there’s a way to do this thoughtfully. You have to know what outcome you want before you bring it up. Do you want to date? Do you want to go on casually playing but have him alter his language a little bit, as feeling this emotional attachment may have become a soft or even hard limit for you? If you do choose to bring it up, do so in a sober moment. Based on your dynamic this may be before a scene even begins, during aftercare, or even after you’ve put your clothes back on and are getting ready to go home. Whenever you feel the clearest and least vulnerable. Be direct, honest, and upbeat. It’s not a death sentence that you have feelings for someone you’re fucking. This happens all the time. One thing you’ll need to think about though is how serious of a Dom he is. If you’re a bedroom sub and he’s looking for a partner that can live the lifestyle 24/7, then you guys might be basically incompatible in a way you may not even want to touch.

That said, your other option is to use the power of your mind to eroticize the butterflies. I think subs have incredible brain power. You’ve managed to reclaim this thing that society has told you time and time again is dirty and wrong and weak, and not only admitted you find it hot, but have taken steps to actually do it (not just watch porn about it). You used your wits to find and identify a good Dom, you’ve played out scenes being pleasing to him and followed his rules and have been invited back. You can do anything. So what I’d propose you do if you don’t want to talk about it (or if you’d like to buy yourself some time to figure out how you’re feeling) is to eroticize the feelings. Try to make them sexy and deviant. Try thinking something that resonates with your sexual self-talk - “It’s a good thing he doesn’t know what I’m thinking or he’d beat me even harder.” That kind of thing. And if that doesn’t become your new kink (yay new kinks!) it will at least help you stretch out some time before you have to have that scary clothes-on discussion about your feelings.