How do you handle negative emotions like anger, jealousy, and fear now?
How do you expect that to be different in D/s?
As I reflected in the last couple of posts, I don’t like conflict, I don’t like negative emotions. I suppose this is true for most people. Conflict and negative emotions make people uncomfortable.
In previous relationships, these emotions were viewed as obstacles. Things to get through or past in order to correct the course of the relationship. Anger was unacceptable with one partner and I had to filter my anger through sympathy. Jealousy just means possessiveness which is good, right? I don’t agree with the phrase now but we’ve all heard the idea that you don’t really love someone if you’re never jealous about them. And fear…fear has always been something I’ve hidden away. It’s a vulnerability, a source of weakness.
The longer I’ve spent time in BDSM and kink, the more I’ve had to look at these negative emotions and figure out how to cope with them. Learning I had a mood disorder reinforced that idea. Poly also meant that I had to sit with these emotions instead of putting them away for “later”.
Now, anger is simply being upset. It’s time to look at a situation and learn why it bothered me enough to be angry. I’ve often described myself as a person who doesn’t get angry so when I do, it’s a big deal in my head. My anger often surfaces when something conflicts with my values, when I think someone has gone against theirs. In D/s, anger is a signal that I’ve ignored a situation for too long, that I’ve not brought up emotions that I should have before and haven’t given Daddy a chance to address. It often also signals a need for sleep or food, things I can be bad at remembering to do or get enough of.
Daddy and I approach jealousy as a surface emotion. If I’m feeling jealous, what is underneath that? Insecurity? Abandonment? Loneliness? Poly folk talk about jealousy a lot and I think it gets a bad rap sometimes. Jealousy is a signal that something else is going and we need to talk about it. And, sometimes, it’s just an emotion to ride out. Sometimes my emotions are too big to sort through and I have to ride it out before I can go back and figure out what happened to trigger it.
And fear? I have been afraid of many many things in my D/s journey with Daddy. He has made me feel secure and safe enough that I have vocalized these fears more than I used to. He doesn’t shame me or dismiss these fears but works to reassure me as best he can. I have been afraid to reenter a power exchange relationship after my last one burned me. I’ve been afraid to move into a more protocol heavy PE relationship. However, I’ve found that D/s strengthens my ability to face these fears, to explore them and understand what other emotions play into fear.
Plus, I love fear play and if D/s isn’t some ultimate twisted form of fear play, I don’t know what is.