By Angel Kalafatis

I have this little Midori traveler’s notebook. It’s velvety soft, brown like brewed coffee, and all worn out. It has a subtle, distinctly leather scent. On the front, it has a tiny copper charm held in place by a thin elastic strap, stamped with the words “good girl.” It is one of my most cherished belongings.

The Speechless Submissive

I am a sex educator and scientist. I talk about all kinds of sex all the time. I talk about it privately with clients, in packed lecture halls, on YouTube, in front of my parents, and with my kids. Being able to speak openly and freely about sex makes me good at my job. It also serves me well in my private life. I am a submissive and, to me, this is part of my sexual identity. This means it’s important to me to have at least one Dominant partner with whom I can engage in that power exchange. A key component of BDSM/power exchange is being able to honestly express what you do and don’t like so that you can negotiate boundaries and be safe. So, you can imagine my frustration when I met my partner, whom I call Sir, and found that my words had begun to fail me.

May I Orgasm, Sir?

Sir has not always been a Dominant. His foray into power exchange began with me. Shortly after we started dating, we had one particularly lovely afternoon, and I asked how He would feel if I asked His permission to orgasm. He took to that like a duck to water, so afterwards I asked if He might like to make that something we did all the time. This became our first rule – I would ask His permission to orgasm, whether I was alone or with Him. For someone who talks about sex FOR. A. LIVING., this was an incredibly awkward desire for me to share with Him. In the past, I’ve been with more experienced Dominants who have initiated a lot of the conversation about rules and negotiations. I’ve been able to be my bashfully submissive self and let them take the lead. Many submissives worry about “topping from the bottom” (this is what the community calls a submissive who manipulates or becomes pushy about getting what they want), which sometimes causes anxiety around how to ask for what we want. Here I was with this new person who had some very naturally Dominant traits but didn’t have the language I did for negotiating a power exchange. It took me weeks to be able to form the words for what, to many, is a small first step in a D/s relationship. I knew this wasn’t sustainable. I had to find a way to ask for what I wanted without feeling like I was the Dom, and it seemed unrealistic to spend weeks getting up the courage to speak every single time I wanted something new.

Our Living Breathing Love Letter

Then, one day, I was over at Sir’s apartment and He handed me this beautiful leather journal with this shiny charm: “good girl.” I read the words over and over again. My favorite words in the world. My heart swelled. Here I would write all my fantasies and fears; my concerns, needs, and desires. He would read it, using that information to guide our blooming dynamic. Sometimes He would respond in writing. Sometimes we’d lie in bed, my head on His chest, and talk about what I’d written. He could write all my rules there. It would be a living, breathing love letter between us. The perfect solution. I could pour my heart out and still hold on to the role of submissive that is such an integral part of who I am.

Sir and I live together now. I have been collared and we are in a 24/7 D/s dynamic. We have been together for over a year and, even though we are now both skilled at speaking openly and honestly, I still have my journal and I still use it. It’s become the most valuable tool in our kinky tool belt, and if my house were on fire (and all the living beings were safe), it is the thing I would go back for.

About The Author:


Professor Sex, aka Angel Kalafatis (they/them; she/her) is a queer, kinky, polyamorous, sex-positive educator, research scientist, academic, and activist. They are currently an MSPS (Master of Science in Psychological Science) graduate student and sexologist at the University of North Florida. Angel is deeply passionate about sex-positive, inclusive, medically accurate, scientifically informed, pleasure based sex education. Angel is a certified yoga instructor, avid coffee drinker, and uber-geek (Slytherin). They can be found in a number of places online, so it’s best to start at ProfessorSex.com and go from there.

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