bdsm · bondage · D/s · Richard · sub space

sub space

I have never made a blatant request for comments before today’s post. Yet today it seems unavoidable. It is my desire to hear from sub and Dom alike…please weigh in on this post.

There is a place I go to that is very much inside me. It is a curious place full warm touches and soft muted shadows. It’s a safe place and when it beckons it is hard to not go. As I sit here and try to find the right words to explain where it is I go and how I get there I think of walking down a dimly lit street…..maybe in some foreign little town….maybe on the sandy paths of some far away island. Some place unfamiliar until I am there and then I just know that this is a place I have visited before. When I am on that path maybe I hear a soft melody, a tinkering of sound in the distance and I follow it. I follow it not knowing where it is coming from only knowing that once there it is good.
Sound…it exists there but only muffled and quiet not unlike a whisper that you must quiet even your breathing to hear. Touch….I feel it quite differently when I am there. It tugs and pulls at me like I know it is there but only comes to me in quick bursts like lights hiding in fire. I feel the sensation of touch but it is like a small teardrop of pain. I can brush it away and it feels smooth down my cheek. It turns to pure pleasure…it warms me and makes me want to stay in my haven.
I have heard it called many different things from drifting off…to blacking out …I, like many of my blogger friends call it sub space. My experiences with this magical safe and very warm place have been intense over the past several weeks. There is not a clear criteria for what puts me there. Fear has put me there. Pain has put me there. Once I am there it is hard to come back.

Yesterday Richard used something on me that I found difficult to take. Being the Bob Villa of D/s he made a whip of sorts out of a thick stubby piece of wood and from it he attached a tangle of black coiled cording. When I asked him what it was he said it was the coil that secures screen inside of the frame. He went on to explain it comes in different thicknesses and weights. This one was heavy and vicious. He and I have evolved over the past two weeks into something quite different that we expected or maybe even wanted. I feel like his Dominance over me is close to total and my submission to him grows more every day. As much as he has learned about my body and the way my submissive mind works the fact I go away to sub space still fascinates him. It was no surprise that soon after the full impact of the pain of the whip was felt by my body I left him to go to my safe place. He will tell you that when I am there he gets no response from me when he hurts me. It is like I am truly gone. We explore this in conversation and I asked him a question that he was not able to clearly answer.

Richard is a sadist. In every sense of the word he is a sadist. So I would think that he wants me to feel the pain he inflicts. Especially when it is at it’s most severe. I would expect the fact that I have a way to avoid feeling the pain to annoy him or make him want to keep me from drifting away. Yet last night he let me go. And when I returned it was to him. And he was warm and safe and loving as he held me and gently brought me back around. When I ‘wake up’ I am often curled into him like a sleeping child. I find that I am clinging to him and he is all that I need to reassure me that I am alright.

I thought perhaps he tolerated my sub space because it meant I could take more. Yet I am not quite sure that is what it is. I know it fascinates him. Maybe the fact he can put me on a different level of conciousness feeds his need to Dominate me as much as his need to hurt me. I am not sure.

I would love to hear about other people’s sub space experiences. I need to know that I am not alone when I drift off to sub space. Doms….how do you feel about sub space? Subs….what’s it like for you when you get there?

25 thoughts on “sub space

  1. I’m a dom, a woman, and my boyfriend is my submissive. In general, I find myself wishing he would go into his own subspace a bit more than he does. He tends to stay very “in his mind” and actually analyze what I’m doing and how I could do it better (which is just aggravating and counterproductive).

    The other day I gave him a very long, reasonably gentle spanking (with hands and various implements) and by the end he was saying “ow” but asking me for more. This isn’t like him and clearly he had gone into some kind of space.

    I’ve bottomed a fair amount myself and subspace for me is more like a giddy state where I’m easily amused and basically, as long as the pain is not too intense, I’m just euphoric. But I still feel pain – it doesn’t all transmute to pleasure or blank out.

    I think if my sub went into the kind of subspace you describe, I’d be somewhere between concerned and kind of freaked out. It might even squick me – like playing with a corpse. (I’m not trying to hurt your feelings, at all, just answer your question honestly. Everyone is different and if I had a sub that was like you I would adjust and love that person for who they were.)

    It sounds good that Richard makes you stay present for some scenes, and other times lets you go to your safe place. And, as always, it’s interesting to read about your experiences.

  2. Thanks for your comment MT….and I see maybe why you would be concerend if your sub experienced what I did. I think everyone has their own ways of coping and working through all of the sensations that come with such an experience. What I should mention is that I am still capable of responding to his questions…I have actually had an orgasm while in subspace! So I am not sure it could be compared with a corpse…but that made me laugh! 🙂
    I like how you explained feeling giddy or euphoric when faced with pain….I envy that!
    Thanks again for commenting!
    Thank you for your comment MT. You definetly did not hurt my feelings I really want to know how others view it and how others experience it.

  3. I have never expereinced sub space. I have played with Doms who have said “oh that was great, you went into space”. I just nodded and let them believe their fantasy. I like to stay in the moment as i can not bear to not be in control. Weird huh, a sub who submits totally but who likes to be in control. needless to say i dont have that control, it is taken from me each time but that is what i have to learn to accept as my submission. I dont drink or do drugs for the same reason so the thought of sub space is similar to me. You make it sound wonderful but also the psychologist in me wonders why you need to escape, is it too scary for you to deal with, is it actually your body looking after you. I have no idea lol but i am curious to see what other people write

  4. Hi Katie~
    The ‘psychologist’ in me wonders why I need to escape too! Though the realist in me pretty much has that figured out. I think partly because submission is so real to me. It is such a part of who I am that I tend to get lost in it. I am like that in the other parts of my life….I tend to put most everything I have into all I do. Submission, well that is no different. I feel things VERY deeply and am a highly emotional person. I am amazingly sensitive. Put that with a highly charged, painful stimulating submissive experience with the most Dominating man I have ever come in contact with…and I think there is no question that my body may take the option of shielding me from the pain of the act. Not only the pain but the fear of it as well.

    I also think much of it is just endorphin overload.

    I believe that it isn’t really my body looking after me so much as my mind looking after my body. I am a person who loves the pain that comes with submitting to Richard…it is a big part of it for me. Yet I can only take so much of certain types of pain. For example……the cane rarely does more than just give me a small endorphin rush. I find I can stay on top of that pain. But last night’s ‘toy’… It was too much.

    I doubt this is something that I will ever truly figure out. I don’t have to have it all figured out to know that I am OK. My worries come from just how deeply I go away. Thanks Katie for commenting!

  5. hey, pix! Happy Wednesday. Sorry to see that the evil screen-spline flogger didn’t leave longer lasting marks.

    I’ll have a lot to say about this later when I have a minute, just because I’ve been there when it happened, and because I blab a lot on your blog. I just thought I’d drop in and remind everyone about the times we’ve seen this happen.

    First time was the first knife experience (Over My Edge, back in June). There was also an episode where I put a rope around your neck. The third time was when I was putting clothespins on your genitals. You may recall – that was the time I told you to stick our your tongue and I put a clothespin on it, which you claimed never happened and got mad at me for making fun of you – but it really did happen! You heard me, you did what I told you to do, you made a whiney unhappy sound when I put the clip on your tongue, but you didn’t remember it. Fourth time was the needles, of course (previous post), when I pulled you back out of it. And this last time, which came AFTER I had flogged your back hard and had asked you to turn over – but before I had really done much at all to your front side. Just the facts – food for thought.

  6. pixiepie- i have never visited subspace…i would like to…to be taken to some other place…i have read a lot about it and cannot chime in on this one until it actually happens to me!


  7. Rare.

    However it’s happened before. I watched another sub go into such a state that we were all quite concerned for several minutes.
    I think for all of your questionings you have a fairly decent handle on why you sink below the surface (so to speak). One of the comments above holds the key in MHO. You say-
    “I feel things VERY deeply and am a highly emotional person.”

    I would say this is a large part of why this happens to you. I understand your concerns regarding Richard, for once I am going to withhold my comment to him until he fulfills his promise to write more. I will go on to say -there are many creative ways to keep a sub from going under. There are as many benefits for not stopping you.

  8. First, this place that pixie goes is not your usual hazy, slightly groggy, slightly euphoric subspace that some of us are familiar with. It is deep, much deeper than that. She goes to the hazy subspace too, during a heavy caning for example. But this is different. I have never seen subspace this deep, and hope that more of you will comment on your own experiences with this.

    My theory is that it is fear that puts her there. In each of the cases I mentioned above, she was afraid of something. Even the last one- she was really fearing that I was going to flog her as hard on her breasts as I had on her back.

    When she asked me the question: why doesn’t it bother me that she escapes my sadistic needs – it stopped me in my tracks. I didn’t know the answer. Perhaps I am just a softy at heart. Perhaps as pixie says, it is just satisfying to be able to put her there. Perhaps it is just my fascination with it, and my curiousity about it. Perhaps it is the perverse thrill of knowing I can do anything to her when she is in that state, except I can do that even if she isn’t, so that can’t be the answer.

    I need to repeat that pixie is responsive to stimulus during these states. She is sluggish, but she is not totally “gone.” And as she mentioned, her body had an orgasm one time, but she doesn’t remember it.

    She often slips away before I notice, and the first sign I have is that her response to the pain I am inflicting stops. I noticed the last time that when I changed the place I was flogging her, or varied the intensity, she would begin to return from her place. I think that this time it wasn’t that deep, and that I could have gotten her out of it quickly.

    I am afraid I don’t have the answer yet. I do know that when she goes there, I feel a need to be very protective of her and to let her come out at her own pace, usually wrapped in my arms. I think that is the natural reaction for a Dom who wants to take good care of his property, and in fact has the obligation to do so when the property is another human being. But I intend to explore pulling her back into the scene, keeping her closer to the surface, and saving those really deep departures for those times when I have already pushed her to some new and scary experience.

  9. Dissociation is a clinical term used to describe the separation of psyche from body, used as protection. Abuse victims (incest, rape) often dissociate at the time of the abuse and then sometimes continue to do so throughout their lives at times when they’re under extreme stress or experiencing fear.

    I was a therapist in a previous life and worked with many abuse survivors and have seen, first-hand, moments of dissociation. Sub-space is dissociation. It’s the separation of the mind, no, it’s more than the mind, the person as a whole (the soul?), from their body because of the stress the body is experiencing.

    Because of this understanding I have often had a hard time resolving in myself the need, even the desire, to be in sub-space. Knowing what is really happening to me and feeling okay about voluntarily putting myself there.

    That being said, the moments when I have “gone away” from the action, as it were, were not terrible and I’m grateful for them. And yet, I still fear it. I’m conflicted about it and wonder if that conflict, that fear, keeps me from experiencing what I need.

    I don’t know if all this psychological gobbledigook is what you’re looking for. Probably not. But, when a discussion of sub-space arises, this is immediately what I go to.


  10. Hmmm. The subspace you describe is a desired state of being for me when i play. i seek that leaving my body feeling but it is sometimes elusive. Freedom is the word i feel. Going there with a person and then coming back safely is a hugely bonding experience. addictive as well.

  11. muffled warm safe connected buzzing joy pure elation soft…this one time i was in it all night, just after an experience of serving Him that really touched me. I kept drifting in and out of sleep, and every time i woke up it was like i was being washed over by a wave of warmth and joy. that sounds zany but it was amazing. i felt innocent if that makes sense! maybe the word im looking for is purity? just so wholly joyful and at one with myself, with Him, with the world. i was looking out the window of my bedroom at the sky and I felt so alive, so happy and like i was a part of it all. so in LOVE with EVERYTHING. i felt like a child in a way.

    that time, i felt like i could touch sub space. usually, its a warm, safe feeling i can snuggle into. something about it feels protective, or like nothing there could ever feel bad, like theres not even a need for protection. best analagy i can think of is one word *home* i think when i go there its to feel the joy i feel from submitting that i cant seem to touch here in the real world which is so full of pain.

    i wonder if your subspace, and my subspace, and everyone elses subspaces are the same place? thanks for this post pixiepie! xxx

  12. Eve,
    Thank you for your comment. Your words make me hope it is more simple than all that. I understand all that you are saying, it makes so much sense. I know about dissociation and as far as I know it never happened to me as a child…..of course would I even remember?
    You say ‘voluntairily’. Thats the thing, I am not sure I could keep myself from going away. I am not even sure I could make myself do it. Strange, uh?

    Thank you for commenting. This comment really made me think!

  13. iwingslave….

    incredibly bonding…it is allowing yourself to safely experience the extreme of life’s emotions and when it is with someone you trust it only builds on that trust.

    Richard said earlier this is a reason subs and Doms almost always fall in love with each other.

  14. hhg~
    all I can say is YES…YES…YES.

    You’ve been there. It is my ‘sub-space’ you speak of and I couldn’t have described it better…..the soft feelings…almost childlike as you come around and feel wonder at the sensations.

    Thank you so much hhg….maybe I’ll see you there sometime…lol.

  15. Pixie – I think you misunderstood, a little of what I was saying, but maybe not. I don’t mean to imply you had an experience previously that led you to dissociate. I mean to say that the experience you’re having NOW is causing dissociation. Because of the trauma to the body.

    I hate to call it that. I don’t feel like it’s trauma. It’s what I want, what I need, it makes me feel something that I can’t even explain.

    Here’s the problem – I think too much. 🙂 I have way too much of an analytical mind. And my training won’t leave me alone.

    I appreciate your bringing this up. It’s something I have thought about, but reluctantly.


  16. Sticking my toe back into the pool….

    I think what you are talking about, Pixie, is a protective tool against the pain. One goes there, I believe, to do exactly as Eve suggests…

    And that’s where I’ll stop. Hope all of you are well.

  17. Thanks eve I think I understand more of what you meant by your first comment. Thank you for clarifying. It is what we need and if our body has a way of allowing us to enjoy it more from the safety of sub space then isn’t that just even more wonderful. Thanks again eve!!

  18. Hi Ron…
    welcome back 🙂
    I agree with you in some ways and in some situations. Though it hasn’t always been pain that has made me experience subspace. Fear has put me there more often that ‘pain’. And also remember Ron, that I am a masochist. Pain is not a negative in my mind. It is simply anothr sensation that fills me up…like love or hate or sadness. All of the emotions in my opinion can alter your state of conciousness in one extreme or the other.

    Last night I experienced something that I will most likely remember as one of the most painful experiences of my life. (and yes…I’ll write about it later!!) Yet I never left. When it was over Richard and I both wondered why. I was focused and resolute through the entire experience. So who knows why some experiences are different than others.

    Thanks for commenting Ron!

  19. The question that needs to be answered is not so much why he doesn’t mind you going to subspace pixie. The question comes to my mind is pixie’s statement that Richard mentioned. “Perhaps as pixie says, it is just satisfying to be able to put her there.”

    I understand sadism. I feel the urge. I am a sadist of the worst kind (or best kind depending upon who you ask). Do you Richard get as much pleasure from the ‘sadistic’ part of yourself in being a cause of fear for her as you do being a cause of pain for her. Both are sadism.
    Just wanting to hear your thoughts.
    Another question. You mention feeling protective of her. Providing shelter for her as she emerges from her self admitted place of protection from you. How much of that protective feeling stems from guilt from pushing her limits to the point that she escapes? I only ask because I have experienced “Dom Guilt” for reasons not unlike this. Again, just curious. I am not turning into Ronjazz. No offense Ron.

  20. Interesting thoughts, Dr. D. It is, of course, satisfying to be able to put her there. And all the comments notwithstanding, it is fear, not pain, that puts her there. She has gone away when there is no pain. She has never gone away just from pain when fear was not also present.
    I recognize that both causing the fear and causing the pain are sadistic. But I must confess that causing the pain is much more pleasureable to me. I am not as good as pixie at describing the feelings – but the feeling that comes over me at the moment of the greatest pain, especially when it is being given to a willing masochist that enjoys it, is… well, just indescribable. When a moan of pain escapes her, I feel like I am melting into her. Far better than just causing fear. Fear is ephemeral – it can come over her just because she doesn’t know what I am going to do, regardless of what my intent might be. I can cause it on purpose, but I can also cause it inadvertantly – much less satisfying than causing “intentional pain” (see pixie’s post so titled).
    Lastly, I don’t think the protective feeling is from guilt. I have experienced Dom guilt – but the more I know pixie, the less likely it is that I will experience that with her. We have spent a fair amount of time and words discussing my sadism. But you must read carefully what pixie posts – she craves and seeks the pain, the submission, the humiliation even. I know some readers don’t understand, but pixie really wants to be controlled and hurt. In short, she is a masochist – she loves it. So I am not experiencing any guilt recently. That she goes away is an interesting phenomenon, but not one I am feeling guilty about. I could greet her return as Mr. Stern (check out Gray Lily’s blog) by saying “welcome back from sub la la land, slut,” and maybe one of these times I will, but generally, I think a little protective custody is in order until she gets back into reality.

  21. Dr. Dom.

    Richard is right.
    And I have said this so many times. He isn’t doing anything to me that I do not desire. Well, sometimes it takes him a few minutes to convince me just how much I desire it but for the most part I am on board the entire time. I think the idea of him feeling guilty for what he does to me funny. To me there is nothing worse than an apologetic Dom…..for example…” I am going to cane you until you bleed but hold you and apoligize for it later.”

    There are no apologies here. I think there is a big difference between him providing nurture and a ‘safe place’ afterwards and him feeling guilty or apologetic for the act. It is such a flawless transition from him nurturing me to him hurting me. He can be gently stroking my back or my hair and in a second he has me pulled up on my knees and he is painfully twisting my nipples. Does that sound like a guilt ridden Dom to you?

  22. hi ya pixiepie! i am sure i have experienced some form of subspace, i know i did from my caning experience of my latest post, it’s kind of a floating, “not really here” feeling, a sort of buzzing in my head and makes my body feel light too. It’s a really nice place and i hope to go there again sometime soon! i guess there must be different degrees of it for each person, but also with how intense their scene is. i do also know that i’ve been subspace whilst being restrained and f**ked, so for me, i don’t think it just occurs when pain is inflicted on the body. But a fab thing in any case! 🙂 t. x

  23. trinity-pup….it is such a nice place. I agree it isn’t just the pain. Actually it is less the pain and more about your state of mind when receiving the pain. How else can I explain having a knife at my throat…something that is not causing me any pain….but the threat of it being there sending me away?
    Thank you for your comment!

  24. ok, you caught me. I had been hiding my sadistic streak until you were “gone away” LOL.

    And you’re right. I only apologize when I hurt you accidently – never when I hurt you intentionally.

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