If you websearch the word “subspace”, you get the following:
“a space that is wholly contained in another space, or whose points or elements are all in another space.
(in science fiction) a hypothetical space-time continuum used for communication at a speed faster than that of light.”
Now, since this blog is not about Mathematics or science fiction (and trust me, despite the fact that I spend my whole workday with a calculator on my desk does NOT mean you want me doing math. Just ask my boss, bless her heart), we can assume this is not the subject I want to talk about.
If you websearch “BDSM subspace”, you find more helpful links. Like this one:
BDSM subspace is a mental space caused by the flood of endorphins in your brain from experiencing the intense combination of pleasure and pain. Basically, it’s akin to that floaty, happy feeling that anti-anxiety meds have given me in the past. (Long story short, that was medically prescribed and just turned out to be a lot of fun.) It is a feeling many submissives, if not most, look for when they participate in a scene.
Some people find it rather easy to reach. For some people, it’s more difficult. It’s very much like any drug in that every body is different. Brain chemistry is a tricky thing and getting to a place where your brain secretes chemicals that make you feel all floaty and euphoric is personal and individual to each submissive.
Also, like any drug, coming down can be a bitch. While the high is natural, the eventual cessation of happy-feeling chemicals to your brain can cause a serious drop. This can present as depression. Some people will doubt themselves, feel dirty or deviant for engaging in submission. Some will doubt they even did enjoy the experience. Uncontrolled and otherwise unprovoked crying is not uncommon. Fatigue and irritability are also fairly common.
However, subdrop can be eased, or even prevented. A good Dominant will provide aftercare. For example, Master will gently massage me to ease away any remaining tension from the scene. He will get me a glass of water, hold me close, tell me he loves me, and whisper things like how tough I am, how proud he is of me, how beautiful I look, etc. If it was a particularly intense scene (or orgasm), I may request milk. I find the lactose to be a good cushion. Since it’s loaded with sugar, it causes additional happy-chemicals to be produced in my brain. It’s like a nicotine patch when you’re trying to quit smoking. And for some reason I will never understand, the afterglow of an orgasm makes me crave milk like nobody’s business.
Exercise can also be helpful in easing subdrop. So getting a little more cardio or doing some yoga can keep your whole world from crashing down after a scene. It’s the same science. It keeps the endorphins flowing so you can taper off. Now, I’m more of a chocolate kind of girl, not really an athletic-type. But even a walk can help take the edge off.
Subspace can also be dangerous, even if subdrop does not occur afterwards. Like any drug, if lifts your inhibitions and obliterates your ability to make sound decisions. You might want more flogging or spanking or inverted suspension. But the Dominant should watch you carefully and decide when you’ve had enough. The only kind of Dominant you should play with should be the kind who will know when you’ve reached the edge. If not, and the Dominant keeps going, you could get seriously hurt. So with a new play partner, start slowly. Learn what you can take. And make sure you engage in honest conversation with your partner.
The first time I hit subspace was the first time we successfully engaged in anal sex. It was taboo, it was powerful, it was like nothing I’d ever felt before. And afterwards, Master held me and told me how amazing it was for him. He asked me how I felt about it and I told him. I rode that high for days. Luckily, I did not experience subdrop at all. I may have an unfair advantage being Bipolar and having medication that regulates my chemicals for me. Specifically, it cushions the drops my brain chemistry would do all on its own, subspace or not. (Please do not turn to antidepressants or mood stabilizers if you do not have a chemical imbalance. That’s not the point of sharing that tidbit of myself.)
I have entered subspace several subsequent times after anal. But the most recent one was my experience with the riding crop. Again, for days I felt euphoric and blissful. I was a pain in the ass at work, being all positive and cheerful. That’s not overly common at a law firm. A general consensus is to be grumpy, even bitchy. Like Clint Eastwood in Gran Torino. And bitchy is pretty much my work default. I’m sure my coworkers were ready to close my head in the paper tray of the copier that breaks down every two minutes.
Again, I did not experience subdrop. Master held me and praised me. We talked about what we loved about it and how we would like to escalate the experience next time. His growl when he saw me in the corset he asked me to wear put me in the right frame of mind from the beginning. Which brings me to another thought.
Starting the scene off well is extremely important. If you’re not in the right mindset, it can ruin the play completely. Be sure you’re really in the mood before engaging. We’ve had to stop before the scene even got started because I thought Master wanted to play, and he thought I wanted to play, when neither of us actually did. I did tell him no before we got too deep into it, but it was not a happy place to be. I was relieved he was relieved about it.
While engaging in power-exchange, subspace can be the goal for a submissive. However, the focus should be on pleasing the Dominant and letting him or her guide you. You are giving up control to someone else, trusting them with your well-being. Focus on feeling and ride the waves. Make sure your partner administers aftercare. If he or she does not, that person is probably not someone you should play with. If you are experiencing subdrop, reach out. Get up and exercise. Eat some chocolate or ice cream. Binge-watch Friends. But most importantly, talk to and be honest with your partner.