Thursday, October 18, 2012

Formspring # 9

I think I need some help here...Because honestly, I have no idea what I'm talking about with this one, but I'm going for it anyways lol.

"Any tips for making a long distance D/s relationship work? It had online for four years (on/off) previously, then we met up IRL over the summer - things have been difficult ever since I got back."

Not having lived with a long distance D/s relationship, and not knowing "what" has been difficult, makes this a slightly more complicated question for me.

I guess that the first thing I would do is ask myself a few questions--why the relationship has been on/off for four years, why it became more difficult after meeting IRL, and what we each need out of the relationship. Then I would take that general line of questioning and the answers I arrived at to my partner for an in-depth discussion.
Because, I think that trying to figure out why a relationship isn't working like we feel it should, is a necessary first step to making it work.

In my opinion, anything we can do to reinforce the exchange of power will strengthen a D/s relationship. But it isn't always about the D/s--at it's core, every relationship is about the people in it. How they think, feel, live, love, and need.
Sometimes when we take a step back and look at a relationship as a whole, not just it's parts, it becomes easier to achieve what we want and need within that relationship.

I'm sorry to say that I don't have any particular ideas about making a long distance D/s relationship work. Perhaps someone else would like to jump in and contribute to this one...?


  1. I really think the question could use more details. Are they living together now? Do they meet once a week? Are they mostly on line with occasional meetups?

    And mainly, like you said, which part is not working?

    1. ancilla,
      Oh thank goodness, it's not just me!
      I'm starting to think that the 250 character limit on the Formspring box might be a real drawback...

    2. My relationship is long distance. The things that make it work are time, connection, attention, honesty, trust, imagination.


  2. Taking it one point at a time:

    1. A relationship that begins online, progresses to IRL, and reverts to online again, will often suffer. Not because there's anything inherently bad about having an IRL relationship -- quite the opposite. There's a whole critical dimension that you can't get online or at a distance, and the problem arises when you get a taste of that dimension, and then have to 'settle for less' again. You chafe because you know there's more, and you know what form that 'more' can take, and now it's not a matter of greener grass. It's more akin to leaving a house in which you've spent your whole life, and realising that there is a world outside. That might be one reason they're having difficulties now.

    2. IRL meetings can have the above effect, or they can have the reverse effect. Perhaps one or both of them didn't like something that they saw/experienced/found out when they met in person, but neither of them is talking about it, and they're trying to pretend it didn't happen or doesn't exist, and go back to the way things were before. The thing is, something like meeting up for the first time is never going to be a non-event. Things will change. Perhaps they weren't prepared for that.

    3. It's too defined. A "long distance D/s relationship" is, at heart, a relationship. Like any other relationship. It's built on the same kind of foundation, and if the foundation is missing bricks, no amount of power play will plug the holes. sin talked about a lot of those cornerstones -- communication being probably the biggest or most obvious, but the others are all equally important in different ways -- and if any of those are in trouble, the rest of the house will be shaky. It doesn't matter how many rooms you build up top, or how good your interior decorator is -- if you're building on shifting ground, it's all going to implode at some point.

    So maybe advise them to strip everything away and work from the bottom up? Critical stuff first, then isolate the problems that the distance poses, and THEN and only then see if the D/s has a snowball's chance in hell or if they need to do more basic maintenance first.

  3. I forgot to add, about point 1 -- it doesn't always go badly. Some people, even when they realise how much more they could have in person, have the mental and emotional fortitude, patience, and perseverance to STILL make it work at a distance. I admire those people. I know, for myself, that's never worked.

    I think half the problem there is that ignorance is bliss, beforehand, and then all of a sudden, you can't claim ignorance any more. And it tends to weed out the strong relationships from the weak (or the strong commitments from the weak, anyway), because what you had before was a situation that you couldn't get around -- you dealt with the distance because you HAD to. But the second it becomes possible to circumvent that, and you see how to do it and what you can get out of it, most people get impatient and they don't want to put in the hard yards any more. They know what they want, and they want it now. "Now" wasn't possible before, but after meeting up, it suddenly is.

    Consumer culture much?

    1. Oh well said acquiexence. Thank you.


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