Found this on Fetlife written user SueKo, it is reposted here with her permission. When I read it I just loved the sentiment behind it.
The submissive’s Bill of Rights:
- I have the right to set limits and expect them to be respected.
- I have the right to trust, providing I have earned it.
- I have the right to expect You to believe I am an intelligent, caring, and loyal person.
- I have the right to ask for Your attention, without having to misbehave to get it.
- I have the right to expect You to administer Your punishment on me with care and caution.
- I have the right to question your motives, should You deny my requests, as long as I do so with the proper respect.
- I have the right to speak up if I feel our relationship is not giving me what I need.
- I have the right to tell You what I need in a respectful manner.
- I have the right to expect You to understand my reasons for doing so and the right to expect You to listen with an open mind and heart.
- I have the right to expect tenderness, love, and understanding after a “scene” is completed, should it be what i desire.
- I have the right to ask You for that tenderness if I’ve had a bad day, or if I just feel the need for closeness. I also understand that there will be times when You and I will disagree about this – when You will want a scene and I will not.
- I have the right to voice my opinion and expect You to listen to and consider my reasoning. I expect You to have final word but I expect You to wholeheartedly consider my feelings, whatever they may happen to be.
- I have the right to expect You to understand that deep trust often breeds love, and I expect You not to repel me if I tell You that I love You. For my Master I will love You, should our relationship move ahead, should our trust continue to grow.
- I have the right to expect You to tell me, at any point, if You do not feel You can return those feelings, so that I may decide what I want and need, for it is Your pleasure that adds to my own, and makes it real – and mine, that adds to Yours!
- I have the right to walk away from our relationship if we cannot come to a common ground on these issues.
- “Submissive” does not equal “doormat”.
There are basic fundamentals that I believe should be used in any power exchange relationship.
Owner/property, Dom/sub, Master/slave, Top/bottom, Mentor/student:
- Those in power have an obligation to protect and make decisions in the best interest of the those handing over the power. This includes education on safety procedures, anatomy, and any other topic that may increase the well being of both parties.
- Those in power need to encourage the growth of those who are handing over the power, both in and out of BDSM.
- Those who are handing over the power need to be educated in what they are handing over, and what is expected of them.
- Communication is not only desired but essential for any sort of a relationship, rather BDSM or not, to succeed. This goes both ways in the power exchange. Those in power do not weaken their stand if they admit they do not know how to do something or that they are having a rough time.
- Those handing over the power are just as responsible as those in power for the safety of all parties involved. Education, communication, and cooperation are just common sense.