Self ownership means taking care of yourself in the ways that a Dom would have you do, in an effort to improve self love, self care, and standards.
Self Owned Origins
We started the Self Owned Sub Club in 2018 as a way to encourage and support single submissives who were missing the structure of D/s in their lives. The original concept was simple: handle your shit, tag it #selfownedsubclub on instagram, and we'd pick one entry at random to win a $75 gift card. It was honestly kinda rad. We had single submissives all over the world sharing their post workout selfies, their clean bedrooms and kitchens, their cooking endeavors, all things that improved their physical and mental health, all things that might be included as rules and protocol in a D/s dynamic.
As our community in the Restrained Grace Back Room on Facebook has grown, and the conversations have become richer and deeper, it's become apparent that not only is self care under-utilized by single submissives, but there were other areas of self-improvement that could help folks make healthier choices for themselves.
A major example of this is self love. I've heard enough stories of folks who set the bar very, very low. I've been one of those people. My standards were about on par with my self-esteem, my self-worth. So I wasn't choosing healthy relationships..
I've heard enough stories of folks describing abusive, neglectful partners and asking "Is this normal for D/s?"
I've heard enough of folks describing abusive, neglectful partners and stating "I know this is the best I can do."
But it's not normal. And we all deserve better.
Self ownership is a way to improve the self, through processes that will look unique for everyone, and therefore improve the quality and health of future relationships.
Improve Yourself, Improve Your Standards
It's taken me years since the end of my abusive marriage to grow to love myself, raise my standards, and expect more from my romantic interests. Self-improvement is a long process, and I wouldn't be where I am without the support of the D/s community on Tumblr, the kink community here in San Diego, and my network.
Subgirlygirl on tumblr once wrote an excellent blog post titled, "Yes, but what do YOU bring?" In it, she discussed how easy it was to describe what she was looking for in a Dom. But someone asked her to consider what that ideal Dom would be looking for in a sub. She had a bit of an "oh shit" moment, and then she realized she needed to step up her game to be the person who would attract the kind of partner she wanted.
What we're doing now
So in bringing back the Self Owned Sub Club next month, we have several goals:
- Improve skills that align with your values as a submissive, whether thats domestic skills like cooking, communication skills in general, or kink specific skills, like bundling rope, cigar service, or boot blacking.
- Encourage self care among single submissives.
- Introduce self love concepts and discuss ways to improve self love.
- Translate self love into higher standards and healthier boundaries for future relationships.
Our new product line coming November 1st will feature things that may help in this process, but are by no means necessary. We'll be offering journals and trinkets and fun ways to treat yourself, but none of that is necessary to work on yourself as a person, or as a submissive. So we'll also be hosting a series of conversations on these subjects in the back room, and creating many more resources here on the blog.
Oh, and of course we're going to continue the hashtag contest! Because we love seeing your hard work paying off, and we high-key love playing Oprah and giving away pretty things!
Stay tuned for more in our self-ownership series throughout November!