Whenever I am approached by anyone who shows an interest in meeting me or seek a relationship with me, I automatically go into self-protection mode and I watch out for certain behaviors or signs that indicate he/she is not sincere or truthful and there are certain things I will not do for my own protection as well as my daughters.
This has come about from a long history of experiences which have taught me to be defensive. I wasn’t always this way. In fact, I have to consciously think about being this way otherwise it is easy to get sucked in and find myself in bad situations.
Below are a list of things which come to mind and the reasons and things I watch out for:
Video conferencing: Whether skype or some other tool, I will not use video conferencing, ESPECIALLY, if he/she is not or says is not setup to also share their video with me. In truth, I avoid video conferencing at least until he/she has cleared many of the other requirements I have and trust has been established. This generally takes a long time to develop and it will test their patience. This is a good thing. It will give one a good idea of how sincere a person is and how well they respond to your concerns.
Trust: Trust has to be established and lets face it, even if one tends to trust people up front, meaning you have a level of trust in a person as soon as you meet/talk/etc with them, realize this is not a personal trust in the person but a level of trust you give to everyone or to humanity. What I’m talking about here is establishing a personal trust in the individual which is far deeper and one they earn over time. It cannot be earned over just a few days, a week or even a month. It takes time and takes a sharing and actions confirming their words in order to build the level of trust one needs in D/s or any relationship other than those of an acquaintance. I’m the worst at this one. All too often I let myself believe everyone I meet has the same agenda as I do in that they want to establish a deep and meaningful relationship. It isn’t until a month or several months later I will discover this is not true.
Telephone or Cell Phone: I do not share my telephone or cell phone numbers with anyone until I reach a certain level of trust with someone. At what point that is, will be determined by the interaction with each individual. Sharing phone numbers makes it too easy for someone to track who you are. I have run into too many people who have ulterior motives and if I’m dealing with someone from online it is far too easy for them to deceive a person because they are most likely not local to be able to prove their words match their actions. Online will take far longer to get to know someone and if they are impatient or not willing to understand, then move on, drop them like a hot potato.
Ask if they are married or involved with someone else, especially sexually if considering a sexual relationship: This goes for whether the person just wants to be friends. I’ve run into too many married couples where the other spouse is jealous and cannot handle their loved one just talking to someone of the opposite sex. Knowing this ahead of time can prepare you for any backlash or sudden departure of an individual which appears to be for no reason. Keep in mind this is something you have to trust they are being honest with you about. If you know other people who also know the person don’t be afraid to ask and confirm what the person has told you. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had other people confirm the person has lied to me. I also think twice about someone who doesn’t reveal their true status when they are first asked, especially if the reason they give you is one in which he/she states they were waiting to see how I feel about certain things before revealing the full extent of their relationship status. Why do I think twice about this? Because read the words, they wait until they find out how I feel about certain things, does that mean if my opinion is not the same as theirs then they won’t tell me the truth or reveal the whole truth? This begs of hiding which I don’t condone. If I ask a question I want complete honesty and not have to worry about him/her not revealing the whole truth of the matter.
Insist on honesty in everything: This of course is linked to the above about married or not married but it is also important in other matters. Keep in mind too if they choose not to reveal something to you, like they are pursuing another relationship at the same time they are pursuing one with you, this is a sign they omit things that can have direct bearing on what you are trying to develop. Yes, I’ve had this happen, and very recently. I’ve heard excuses such as, oh but I was waiting to see how you feel about certain things before revealing this to you or I just didn’t think about it at the time. Or you shouldn’t be upset about this because you decided to just be friends. What about the time we were actually discussing meeting and being more than just friends? The pursuit of this other woman had to be going on at that same time, so this was omitted when I asked about his status and was not told he was pursuing other women. After specifically asking about marriage or involvement with someone I had heard about and they leave out they are married until I spoke about my openness and find polyamory relationships desirable, just stinks of hiding. Would the man ever have told me he was married if I was against polyamory relationships? Well, I have no idea, all I know is he didn’t tell me when I first asked about his status. This reveals his ability to hide and not reveal important matters and will choose for his benefit and not for mine.
Do you have any deal breakers and if so mention them right away: for instance, for me smoking is something if I meet someone who smokes they have to be very considerate of my feelings. I can’t have someone smoke around me, my body reacts by immediately becoming congested. Then there too is the fact, I can’t stand the smell, on their body and clothes, or in the air or the taste of it when I kiss someone, so this is a major deal for me. I won’t ask someone to change or quit because I know from other family members how very difficult this can be. If I can’t live with it or be around anyone who does then I have to move on. Generally I ask if someone is a smoker right away, sometimes I do forget to only find out later they are. This can create a conundrum especially if there are a lot of other attributes I find desirable.
Demand respect but also give it: Don’t let anyone treat you disrespectfully but in turn no matter how badly they treat you be respectful but walk away if they are not respectful to you. At the first sign whether it is towards you or towards another person, walk away because even if it is towards another person eventually it will be directed at you. As much as I dislike what some people have done in my life, I may talk about what they have done but I hope I am never disrespectful of them when I do. Being disrespectful to someone else is a reflection of how little you respect yourself. If you allow someone to be disrespectful of you, and you keep them in your life, then how can you expect other people to respect you and how can it not eat away at your ability to respect yourself?
Watch to see if they willingly admit to their own mistakes: Everyone makes mistakes. If they are not willing to admit to their mistakes, then they most likely blame others. This will eventually bite you in the butt. It is hard enough to take on your own mistakes without others trying to blame you for theirs. Never take on another person’s mistakes and don’t let them tread all over you in the guise of punishing you for something that is their responsibility. If you feel as though your needs are not being met and you communicate this to him and he punishes you by silence this is his mistake, not yours. You need to know you can openly communicate with him and not be punished for it. And you need to be able to discuss each other’s mistakes without feeling as though he will punish you for bringing up something he has done. First and foremost be respectful when you do and don’t wine about it or give excuses. Face each other with humility and a desire to improve your relationship together. But if he doesn’t or won’t admit to his mistakes then he is not worthy of you and there will be no way to repair the damage.
Be willing to address your concerns in a way which builds your trust: My concerns at the beginning of getting to know anyone, especially someone online and at a great distance away, is my security and my daughter’s security. I can’t reveal my real name, phone numbers, details of my location, etc. until a trust has been built, which means email communication under a fictitious name until a level of trust has been built. Sometimes I thought that level of trust was built and revealed certain things before I should have because when I find out that level of trust is fictitious then I become stressed over what this person may or may not do and worry about what his real agenda was. All I can advise is caution, create a deep level of caution, and if there is any sign they are not willing to wait until you feel sure and comfortable then move on. A genuine person seeking your friendship or even a deeper relationship will be concerned about your welfare and not push for anything you are not willing to give, anyone ignoring this has another agenda and probably one you don’t want to be a part of. I learned this the hard way and trust me you don’t want to go there.
One other thing, as you slowly impart personal information about yourself the other person should also be willing to share personal information about themselves. Don’t let them give you a false sense of security by sharing only tiny bits of pieces while you reveal your whole life story. Demand equality in what is revealed. It is so easy to think someone is sharing and a trust is building when they only focus on you and giving only tiny bits of themselves. They do this in order to build a false sense of trust in you so they can get more and more out of you. This is dangerous because it hides their true agenda. If they are not willing to share equally, if they want your vulnerability without revealing their own, then walk away. I know men claim they do not share easily but a genuine Dom understands he cannot ask a sub to expose her deepest fears and concerns without being willing to share his own and he will go through fire for her if she is important to him. Anyone not willing to do so does not have your best interest at heart.
Don’t be afraid to test them: Life is about testing your own limits, why not also test the limits of those in your life or seeking to be part of your life? It is important to know where they stand and whether they can fit into the type of life you want to be part of. I admit it. I’m very demanding when it comes to someone I consider a close friend. They must be able to step up when I need help. If they put limits on this and those limits are at a superficial level then I don’t consider them a close friend. I will bend over backwards for those I consider a close friend. I will even help strangers if the situation calls for it and I will help acquaintances too but they will be far more selective as to how much I’ll allow it to impact my life just because I know they will not be there for me. I’m a generous person, you can ask my friends but all too often I’ve had people take advantage of me because of my generosity. The last man in my life is a perfect example of this. He caused me to end up in a financial situation which endangered my ability to take care of myself and my daughter and left without even caring that he left us in this situation. Like I said. I learned the hard way. Don’t let someone use you or put up a guise of taking something with the intent of paying you back. If that person doesn’t provide your needs, or help you, if you test them in asking for their help and they are unwilling to do so, then don’t let them drain you dry hoping they will one day repay you in kind. It just doesn’t happen.
Ask your community what they know of the person and be open to what they have to say. This is important. If others in your community know the person this is one way to find out how truthful the person is. Others may have had personal experience with the person and can either confirm or deny what you have been told. I wish I had done this. It wasn’t until after the fact when I learned from one of the community members their feelings about someone who had contacted me. I’m the worst at not listening to what others tell me especially in the beginning of a new relationship. Its all so fantastical, so wonderful, I don’t want anything negative marring it, so I tend not to listen to other’s warnings. Pay attention, make note, and watch for anything that would support the warnings if you are given any.
Pay attention to even the smallest of red flags: In other words, don’t make excuses for them. Admittedly, if the other person is open and honest about themselves, I’ll learn about their flaws. I’ll learn about the various mistakes they have made in their lives. I’ll learn about what makes them tick or the things in life which has created the person I see before me. These are things I want to know and they do not take away from the person I’m getting to know. No, it is the little red flags, like them not telling me about dating another person, or pursuing an online relationship, or showing disrespect towards an old girlfriend or boyfriend or friend who did something that hurt. Or I open up and share deep things about myself and they only talk about me and don’t share their personal experiences or even what is going on in their day. These are those little red flags that can point to things that might not be good, especially if these are things desired. I desire, in fact, I insist on sharing. I want to know what a person has done that day. I like to hear if they had a situation similar to mine so I can hopefully learn from their experience or just know I’m not the only one it has happened to. Not sharing for me goes from a small red flag to a huge red flag when I ask for someone to share and they don’t. I walk the other way because if they don’t share now, they won’t share in the future.
People are on their best behavior when you first meet each other, whether that is online, through email, or in person. Don’t ignore things. If someone finds an excuse to not do something like video conferencing because they aren’t set up for it, then tell them you won’t video conference until they are. They should understand this, if they don’t then walk. If they aren’t just as concerned for your safety as you are, then walk. Don’t give up who or what you are, and don’t give up your security for someone, not for anyone.
There are so many different ways to hurt someone. It doesn’t have to be physical. It doesn’t have to be physical abuse or rape to destroy someone. There are people out there who just want to use people to get what they want. Some may just want to fulfill their sexual needs and they will tell you anything to get you to spread your legs. Some may just want to satisfy their sadistic needs, or they may want someone to take care of them financially, put a roof over their head, food in their bellies so they never have to work a day in their lives. There are some who just enjoy manipulating people to get what they want, sometimes it has nothing to do with physical desires but is a mental enjoyment of playing with someone. All of these people will promise you the world. They’ll talk to you with a silver tongue and tell you everything you want to hear. They will seem to be god’s gift to you and you will count yourself blessed that they want you until they have you in their clutches. I have lived this. I know how easy it is to deceive myself into believing everything I’m told and ignore their actions which prove their words are lies or ignore the lies I hear them telling others believing he/she does not lie to me.
I am writing this, not to tell you that everyone is like this, because not everyone is. The hard part is many have different levels of this and some are not all that clear. I want every sub or rather every woman out here (and yes even men) to learn to be cautious whether they are seeking a D/s relationship or vanilla or something in between. I want her to protect herself. I read some submissive blogs and I want to tell them to be careful. I can see some of them doing things that are dangerous or doing things which the other person is not reciprocating on which can indicate deceit. I can see some subs agreeing to meet someone they just met without building a foundation of trust. This is why I suggest if you meet someone online, ask the other subs in your community, or even other Doms in your community if they know the person and know of anything to be cautious of or just what they do know good and bad about the person you are in contact with and thinking about meeting. In other words, ask for references. If the person who is seeking you out, or you are entertaining the idea of meeting in person is not supportive of you talking with others, then avoid them, they have something to hide. They may tell you a certain person is vindictive and that is why they will tell you bad things about him/her and this might be true, but it also might not be true. It could be they are trying to hide their activities from you. It could be this person has something vital they know which you cannot accept in your life, so don’t be afraid to ask. Companies won’t hire someone without a background check so why would you risk your body, your very life, without doing your own background check?
I am sure I could think of a hundred more things to consider or be cautious of, but these are what came to mind as I wrote this. If you find it useful, take it and add to it those things that fit you personally. Don’t be afraid to challenge anyone who comes into your life, after all when they approach you, they are essentially applying for the job of being your friend, lover, confident, or whatever and it should not be taken lightly. You might feel grateful, especially if you have few friends in your life, but feeling grateful should never mean ignoring your needs or risking your life.
We subs like to help people. In fact, helping others is what brings us the greatest joy. We will do amazing things to help others in order to fill that need in our lives. However, it is when we need others and that help is not reciprocated when we start to feel used and taken advantage of. It is one thing if someone has a viable reason to not help which we can accept but it is another when we are repeatedly refused from someone we have helped time and again which we eventually come to realize the person has only been using us and taking advantage of our generous nature. This is when we start to lose faith in ourselves and in other people.
Trusting others is a gift. Helping others is a gift. It is something that should not be taken for granted. It is something which should not be abused and yet I see it happening time and time again. This is something we as subs need to be extra cautious about. I’m not saying don’t help people. I’m just saying be careful when you do. Don’t give out your life savings with empty promises of being repaid. Find other ways to help if you can. Don’t give up who you are in order to fit into something which seems like a gift from the gods, stay true to yourself, if yourself isn’t good enough then leave and wait for someone who will appreciate you for who you are. Be generous but not to a fault.
All my other posts generally take only hours to write. This one I have taken several days to complete. It bears great importance to me, not just in letting my fellow readers to hopefully gain some perspective on this but also as a reminder to myself. Often I find when I terminate a possible relationship I do so instinctively from something resonating from one of the areas I mentioned above but I often find myself doubting whether I am doing the right thing or not. Often times, the other person will try to convince me that I am not doing the right thing, that I am making a mistake, and that I am not seeing things truly for what they are. When I respond instinctively it is because my conscious mind isn’t seeing truthfully until I can step back and take a more discerning look at things. Don’t be afraid to do this. If the person is the genuine article, that being someone who genuinely cares for you and is being honest and caring then they will be patient and understand your need to see things clearly. Anyone not supporting you in this regard is not worthy of your attention and most likely within a very short time you will see things for what they were and be grateful you stepped back when you did.
If we do not demand high standards in those we admit into our close circle then our children, and our children’s children will not learn the importance of these standards. The more people allow dishonesty and coercion to flourish the more our society will degrade. The way we can improve upon our society is by first starting with ourselves and our immediate friends and family. Change within ourselves what we desire and will accept in those closest to us will either inspire them to be greater and better people or we will attract those who are. Don’t lower your standards. Don’t give in to believing you are not worthy. We are all worthy and therefore should demand nothing less.