ASK PATRICK: In BDSM, Slave chooses Master, not the other way around

By on October 11, 2010

Dear Patrick: I am a slave girl who is owned by two masters. I should say ‚”was owned‚” because they are breaking up. The house is going to be sold, and they will use the proceeds to go their separate ways. I have been told not to worry, that one of them will take me on, and I will become part of his household. But I have not been told which master wants me. I find that I have a distinct preference for one of them over the other. In fact, if I cannot be in His service, I may need to end my time here and find another owner. I brought up some of this in a vague way and was told that a true slave serves the master without questioning who he is. That it should not matter to me, as long as I was owned. Is this a slave’s true ideal? Am I being a slacker?–Custody Battle

Dear Custody Battle: The strictest 24/7 ‚”master/slave‚” relationship is still based on a consensual fantasy. It is not real slavery; it is role-playing. I know this opinion will piss off a lot of people. But if you think I am full of crap, just inform your slave that you will no longer be having sex with him or her or doing whatever he or she most enjoys. Design a schedule of activities that consist of all the things the slave has told you are beyond his or her limits. Then see how long it takes your ‚”slave‚” to pack a bag and catch a bus to a new town.

You are in a relationship that is very intense, but you still have the right to a happy life. If you would be miserable trying to serve one of your masters, speak up. Any agreement you had to serve was made to two people in a relationship. When their relationship ended, so did yours. Of course, you have to accept the risk that you won’t get what you want. But it seems like that is a possibility anyway. Try to find a time when you can speak respectfully to the master that you prefer, and ask if you can continue to serve in his household. You have a right to know whether he is making a place for you in his plans‚ or not.

Best of luck. It can be difficult to start over once you have shed the head space of a mundane adult and entered into a fantasy of being chattel, with very limited power or responsibility. You may have to draw on skills that you haven’t used for quite a while in order to make a new life for yourself. I hope all goes well, and you wind up in a situation that meets your submissive needs, with a master who appeals to you.

Patrick Califia is a therapist in private practice in Northern California. His practice includes internet consultations as well as face-to-face psychotherapy. He is a prolific author who has published widely about BDSM and sexual politics. Patrick’s books include Macho Sluts, Sensuous Magic, and Public Sex: The Politics of Radical Sex.

This column is not intended to offer medical or legal advice. It is for educational and entertainment purposes only. If you need medical or legal advice, see a doctor or lawyer!

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