When I first dove into BDSM, I went all out. It ended badly. Very badly. It ended with me being extorted as a sex slave and held captive in a room for 6 months while the sadist sexually tortured me. My story is one of millions where people have walked into BDSM and found themselves with a criminal posing as a Dom/me.

After 7 years of therapy, I dug deep into the psychology of BDSM and tore it apart. I interviewed Investigators, Attorneys, Psychologists, Doctors, Rapists, Criminals, Professional Dom/mes, and sex workers and dove deep into the “Why” of BDSM. When I was done, I emerged from my research with one, very clear understanding about BDSM that encompassed everyone I spoke to: People turned toward BDSM because it is part of who they are, or they were using BDSM to self-harm and reinforce their trauma. Further more, I learned that either people have the tenacity to jump in the deep end and explore on their own… or they feel intimidated and hesitate, wishing they had the courage to explore. The shy and timid are often left behind with little to no guidance. And there they sit on the sidelines, unable to take the lead and step in. This is where I come in.

I once used BDSM to self-harm. I have used BDSM to re-enact my traumas and provide a safe space for Exposure Therapy. I also used BDSM to empower myself. Today, I use BDSM to build and nurture my own confidence, and I teach others how to do the same. By practicing, what I call MINDFUL BDSM, or Zen BDSM, a person can embrace the part of themselves they have been conditioned to reject, and this heals them. It reclaims their identity and their name. It rebuilds their confidence. No sex. No impact. No pain… not until the basics have been covered and mastered.

My philosophy is abstract. My philosophy is unique. It’s never been done before. It is a hell of a marketing angle. And it encompasses what I am, where I’ve been, and what I believe.

The Humble Dom/me

Sounds like a contradiction in terms, doesn’t it? After all, being humble requires humility. Not exactly the sort of thing one associates with a Dom/me. But this is VERY much where I differ from your average BDSM Guru.

I remember the day I told my former husband that I was a Mistress. The marriage was two months from it’s end and he had reached the “competition” stage of a breakup where “anything you can do, I can do better.” At that time, I had 25 years of Mistress experience under me. He had none. But he was adamant. “Anything you can do, I can do better.”

And the first thing out of his mouth, “I’m going to get me a sub so i can boss them around and have them serve me!”

I cringed. I tried.

“Having a sub is not about having someone serve you. It’s about your responsibility to them.”

He argued. I abandoned that attempt. I knew a lost cause when I see one.

But that concept stayed with me. His words stayed with me and cut into me. What was he missing? I have asked this of that moment so many times since then. Today, it finally occurred to me.


I thought back to all the Dom/mes I have known. All the Mistresses and Faux-Dom/mes. My favorite Dom. The one whose book I read and I nodded in approval. Now HE got it. Michael Makai (Domination and Submission was the book). I highly recommend it.

Now that is a Dom who GETS it. And what sets him apart from everyone else?

Dom Michael is humble.

Many Dom/mes go out of their way to play the submissive so they can “put themselves in their sub’s shoes.”

Likewise, I have the practice of breaking in ALL of my equipment on my own flesh before using it on a sub. I will not wield a flogger on a sub that I have not had wielded on my own back.

Why? Because humility makes the best god-damn Dom/mes out there. It keeps our arrogance in check. It nurtures our empathy. It reminds us why the sub needs us. Why they seek us out.

I refuse to friend a Dom/me, let alone work with one, who does not possess this trait.

If you are a Dom/me seeking to better build your Dom/me skills, I can not emphasis the importance of humility more. A huge part of my philosophy and ethics is built on the beliefs laid out in Buddhism. and those principals, I very much bring into my Dungeon. That’s right! The BDSM Buddhist!

“Climb Everest with Me”

I was nearing the end of my 12-year long (and second) marriage when I met my sub, Adam. The year was 2020. I had just “come out of the closet” and had also come to the revelation that I was bi-sexual, poly-amorous and/or non-monogamous, and a Free-Spirit. It would take me the next two years to realize that I also was a Burner and a Boho-Hippie.

My then-husband and I had just opened our marriage. Finding Adam was like unlocking a part of me that I had long-since forgotten. My marriage was shaky and falling apart around me. I had just finished up with 3 rounds of IVF in an attempt to get pregnant. We had recovered from two affairs. Simply put, being with my husband required that I suppress all that I was for it to work.

The marriage was not meant to last.

One evening, while with my sub, we were taking turns pushing our boundaries, when he asked me to choke him. I was hesitant. I wanted it. “Show me,” I said, and with all the trust in the world, he guided my hands to his throat.

Instantly, a vision came to me, a realization that would forever change how I view marriage, relationships, and BDSM.

It was like I had once stood at the base of Mount Everest with my then-husband. We had both decided to climb this mountain together. We went into the shops to buy equipment and we argued about the supplies. We argued about which maps we would take. We argued about which knots we would use.

And then we started the climb to the summit. We argued about which paths to take. Which foods to eat. We argued about which ropes to use. Nevertheless, we climbed higher and higher. At one particular overhang, his rope broke, he fell, and I caught him. At once, he screamed, “You tied the equipment wrong!” “You didn’t secure the line right!” “You chose the wrong foothold.”

No thank you. No acknowledgement. Only blame.

But here I was with Adam. The same mountain before us. The same shops. We agreed to climb this mountain together. We selected the ropes, the maps, the equipment. As his Mistress, he trusted all of my choices and gave his opinion only when asked, to which he only ever replied, “I trust you.” We began the ascent. We climbed in peace, a sense of calm over us both. With Adam, we came to the same overhang, but when he slipped and fell. I turned in a breath and caught the rope, holding him there, suspended in the air, thousands of feet above ground. And with the greatest of calm, he looked up at me and unhooked his harness. Without thought, my hand was out. My hand on his, I caught him and held him there. And smiling, he looked up at me. The look in his eyes were all the words I needed.

“I knew you’d catch me.”

And that is BDSM.

For me, this is the difference between a sub and a Dom/me and a marriage. Actually, since that marriage, I made a deliberate point of finding a partner who shared that same trust as I saw between my sub and me.

This is BDSM. This is what I seek with my sub every time I reach out to Adam and summon him.

No other Dynamic has given me the opportunity to explore trust so intimately and deeply as BDSM.