More and more I see online new guard subs bragging about how they’ve put a Dom to their place, often by publicly “shaming” and exposing their names and profiles for having expected to be called Sir upon first chat; even more often, other Doms in the wider scene praise this kind of behavior, in line with todays tendency to value more public validation than critical thinking and teaching (which requires much more effort than what social media gets us used to). So should you address a stranger as SIR upon first contact? Yes, no?
Well, it depends on who you are truly. Are you a submissive as an identity, or you enjoying feeling like a submissive when having sex?
Should a submissive be addressing a Dominant as SIR
- BDSM Protocol for Doms and subs
- Empowering a submissive’s identity
- The understandable debate on earning Respect
- A wise lesson from one of Sir Lupus’ Mentors
- Titles in Old Guard Etiquette
BDSM Protocol for Doms and subs
BDSM is a deep, spiritual and serious lifestyle that stretches far beyond the mere BDSM activity of sexual or fetish interaction. It’s something that has to do with Identity, losing our masks, being our true selves, and reaching our true nature and potential with consensual partners, who empower our nature in a polarized dynamic made of gradual, and eventually complete, power exchange.
Of course one can also just dip its nose in BDSM physical activity, but I won’t be the only one to break it to you: you won’t succeed in having a rich, serious and powerful experience if you don’t open up yourself, your true self to what you are doing and to your partner, and if you don’t associate a meaning to the action. As stated in this article about wearing a culture The lack of “why” behind the “what” is often the reason for BDSM to be unsatisfying, unsuccessful, frustrating, dangerous, or some times even mortal.
Protocols and Etiquettes are specific rituals and behaviors that BDSM players observe with their community; one example from outside of the BDSM world (but not so far away from home either) is the way bikers salute each other on the road. Just those two fingers lifting, in a language that means something for them; it means being part of the same tribe, it means sharing with a simple gesture, a passion, a commitment or a way of seeing life. In BDSM Dominants tend to call the submissives specific names (from titles to slur terms) and submissives tend to do the same with Doms (from Master, to Boss, to Sir, to Daddy, to Alpha and other ways). The use of these terms is supposed to verbally remark and express the mutual agreement between a Dominant and a sub, being conscious of their role and their part of the Equation.
Calling a sub “boy” doesn’t imply a Dom wants to fuck it or to put it under its Boot. It’s more of a courtesy, it’s recognizing the boy’s identity. A sub calling a man “Sir” is not a way of worshiping the man itself; it’s recognizing to itself its nature and role, and manifesting it to address the Dominant. It’s a way to show focus and respect, not just to the Dom, but mostly, to yourself as a sub. Here’s why:
Empowering a submissive’s identity
As a foreword, let’s remember there are two kind of submissive: those whose identity is the one of the submissive as a nature, and who want to fulfill their purpose and nature, and who sub with their heart first, then their brain, then their body. The second kind is composed by the majority of men who are sexually bottom, and they want to submit with their bodies, with little to none brain participation, and without their heart. Those are to our eyes bottoms who want to use a Top to fulfilling their sexual agenda. In our views, this is not quality BDSM and we don’t speak in the name of it, as we find this really dirts with mideocrity the powerful emotions a sub can live, and should live, with a Dom.
But going back to the “real” subs. Let us make an association with hankies and their colors. Nowadays kids don’t even know what hanky colors are for (you can read more on it here), and those who know it often act with superiority towards hankies, as it’s something “so 80’s”. It’s from way back before the 80’s, and it means so much more than just sporting what you’re into. You see, when you are a sub by heart and nature, it’s a hard process to accept fully this truth; it’s even harder to realize once you have tasted the real taste of Domination, it’s impossible to live without it, without fulfilling your nature in servitude and homage of Men. Therefor, sporting your hankie used to mean so much more, and still does to us. To publicly sport that your nature is the one of the men server and pleaser, was a powerful act of acknowledgement and conquer of your identity, with no shame nor embarassment, as it should be. And us Doms, we must fulfill our promise to encourage in this, while protecting you from abusers and “fake” Doms in the community (because just as there are 90% of subs who are not “real”sub, there are a 90% of doms who are not “real” Doms).
But careful now, new guard boy. I can see you there in the back, snapping “there, you said it. I shouldn’t call just everybody who pretends to be a Dom “Sir”, they must earn my precious respect first!“. You know, I’m alright with that, if that’s your thing, but remember that if you have expectation to find a “real Dom” who deserves you, you should first check if you are a “real sub” and verify what it is that you’re truly offering as well. As of now, you’re simply offering your very entitled eyeroll.
The understandable debate on “earning Respect”
Now, while Old Guard folk is very strict with subs, you must know it’s even stricter with Doms. That’s why many times we’ve been publicly aggressive against people who abuse of this Title and submissive’s expectations (see our views on the so called “FinDom” here), and we generally dislike today scene’s abandon of Protocols and old ways. Those old ways were not put there to impede new people from expressing themselves, but just to provide the strictness which gives the structure which gives stability and safety to all to those who were to come. Every step in Old Guard is designed to make such that Masters are true Master who have been trough training and mentorship (see our article about “who is a Master in Old Guard Leather“), and that subs and slaves have a place to be and where to feel proud and happy. All the Protocols, the Etiquettes and the traditions are there to allow everybody who truly mean what they say, to live their life with each other to the fullest, and in safety, even while being extreme.
It is indeed true that many “doms” are just idiots playing a role to feel better about themselves, and I believe a part of the entitled, snotty reaction of most “subs” today, is truly coming from the heartbreak in the subs in fearing that real Doms are gone for good. But at the same time, it’s very strange and difficult to approach a sub from new guard today as they “want” everything and the opposite of everything. It almost looks like these new guard subs, from the heights of their good judgment and rights to be entitled, are though also constantly fantasizing and hoping to be found by those same men they keep rejecting. It’s an interesting contradiction in today’s kinky society.
So, what should a sub do when saluting a Dom for the first time, or when being called “boy” out of nowhere?
A wise lesson from one of Sir Lupus’ Mentors
In order to grasp the point I’m trying to make here, I need to take a little detour to an experience that truly enriched me a lot, and that fits perfectly here. During my Mentoring in Brussels, of which you can read about in part one and part two of “Of Wolves, Dragons and men”, and in “my life as an owned Alphaboy“, during one of the first meetings when I was letting myself go and open into submission for the man who at the time was my Sir, I started telling him all of my disastrous childhood, and the hate I had towards my parents for what I’ve lived. I was flooding the playroom with tears. When I was done, completely miserable on the floor, I expected Sir to hug me, tell me that now that wouldn’t happen no more, that some times kids get bad parents, stuff like that. Instead, when I said “I will not be there for them when the time comes”, he slapped me. That was shocking. When I was about to react, he started talking.
“you will instead be a good son. You will do your part, and you will keep loving your parents, because it shows you love them. No matter how bad they’ve been as parents, you don’t let that take you at their same level. It doesn’t matter the outcome of what you do boy, it doesn’t matter if you’ve been a good son and they still didn’t treat you with love and respect. You have. You have been a good son. And when they’ll be gone, you’ll know they have been shitty parents, but fuck, you’ve been a good boy. That’s what matters. Not what others do in exchange, but what you give in every moment. Give your best, don’t let people’s inadequacy change who you are, ever”
This is exactly the reasons why subs should, and since this is our blog, I’ll say MUST call Doms Sir at all times, unless differently ordered. Because it’s not about the Sir. It’s about you. Your life, your choices, how you live, is all about you. Focus on being a good sub. True Doms are out there, watching, and won’t be interested in you if you don’t show who you really are. Calling a man Sir is about Etiquette and celebration of our lives and natures, it doesn’t mean you’re sexually available. Here’s how to defuse any problems should an idiot be an idiot. Notice how you’ll keep being a perfectly good boy, and probably make him feel even smaller in the process, instead of reacting with arrogance. A sub always has the right to deny any kind of service, but it must be respectfully. Again, this is for you, not for him at this stage.
You: “Hello Sir, hope You have a great evening!”
Him: “COME HERE AND LICK MY FUCKING BOOTS BBBOOOI”
You: “Thank You Sir for the generous offer, but this boy is just showing correct Protocol. Have a good evening Sir”
Him: “Hey boy! You look like a nice fuck!” (meaning business)
You: “Thank You Sir. boy is flattered, but it doesn’t feel comfortable with being involved in anything, thanks”
And so on. You can simply put a man down with a smile and being kind and Respectful, while showing your complete lack of personal interest. Again, this doesn’t mean you should behave like this as a default. Try to remember if you are in a Leather club, on a Fetish Chat and such, a Dom will expect you to be there for a reason, as you’re part of that environment, you shouldn’t supposed to be there by mistake. Be yourself, be submissive and enjoy being it. It’s a wonderful thing, and nothing to be ashamed or nervous about.
Titles in Old Guard Etiquette
In Old Guard Leather, Titles are not just nicknames to sport in order to feel interesting and sexy. They are a pretty big Deal. Titles are achieved, and given by Mentors or your Leader in the LeatherFamily. Of course you can identity as a boy, a slave, a sub, a Dom, a Sir even without this acknowledgment if you mean it by definition of your identity and nature, because these titles are indeed linked to a deep meaning; the tradition of earning titles is linked to the responsibilities linked to each Title, but also to guarantee to subs a good experience without trauma, as an example.
One can feel he is a “slave” (check out who is a slave in Old Guard Leather) just because he dreams of being fucked by twelve men and licking their feet, but hey! He can risk finding himself in full bondage drinking piss from the floor and being paddled and such! It’s instead important to. start as a sub, and understand what it means to be a slave and what Masters expect from a slave, and if still interested, start working your way trough the experiences that will allow you to reach the pinnacle of taking full control over your life, conquering your identity and being free from ego’s restrictions. Becoming a slave is a hard training, and mutually hard is the training to become a real Master.
That’s why its so important to give back meaning to BDSM, give back meaning to Titles, give back meaning to the lifestyle, instead of thinking it’s everybody’s right to play with it, to change it to fit their personal agenda, and all in the name of public validation on social media and our small communities (in my opinion that’s what became toxic in modern queer culture).
So bottom line, should you call a stranger Sir if you’re a sub and he is a Dom? Hell yes, if you are a true sub who identifies with these words. Be proud, shine bright, you’re doing the right thing even if he’s a douche. If you’re not a “real sub” as described on this website… well to each one its own, keep feeling free to do what you want; it’s clearly what you’re seeking.