Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Surrendering vs submitting

Wow, whod a thunk. 2 posts in one day. Go figure.

A friend I know asked me to write about submitting versus surrendering. I will take my best shot at it. At first, the definition of surrender is as follows from Webster's

sur-ren-der  /səˈrɛndər/ Show Spelled Pronunciation [suh-ren-der] Show IPA Pronunciation
–verb (used with object)
1. to yield (something) to the possession or power of another; deliver up possession of on demand or under duress: to surrender the fort to the enemy; to surrender the stolen goods to the police.
2. to give (oneself) up, as to the police.
3. to give (oneself) up to some influence, course, emotion, etc.: He surrendered himself to a life of hardship.
4. to give up, abandon, or relinquish (comfort, hope, etc.).
5. to yield or resign (an office, privilege, etc.) in favor of another.

So by definition surrender is to give up, to yield. So using surrender in BDSM would tell me that you are surrendering yourself to another in power, control, etc. However submission is just the opposite. In submission, you submit to another, in a preagreed upon aspect.

Surrendering would be giving it all up. Just as #4 in the definition states, "give up, abandon or relinquish. Surrender yourself to another. You could classify surrender and slavery as the same. A slave would have no rights. No say in what is happening. No limits.

Submitting is just that, submitting to another but with limits defined and respected. I know it sounds like I am repeating myself, but obviously to my friend this is something that is troubling to her. A submissive has the rights to limits, safe words and some sort of equality with their partner.

Is it possible to surrender and submit at the same time? Well, possibly. You can surrender your submission to another, but you are still submitting to that person. If we were to flip the question and ask, "will you submit to surrendering to me?" that is a contradiction in terms.

Surrendering could be defined in many ways. Now that I take a moment and think about it. I
have a few other points. I know a couple of moms who surrender themselves to a life of house work, being a soccer mom, cooking, classroom mom etc. That doesn't make them any less then anyone else. They choose to surrender. Maybe surrender is voluntary. You are willingly to give up with no rights or say as to what will happen. Where as submit or submission is involuntary. For example, you willingly submit to another with limits. But you can surrender yourself to slavery with no limits.

I hope this helps my friend out. This is such a broad subject to talk about. With some more defined areas as to where someone is submitting or surrendering, I could be more specific.

I will inflict the pain, but I will kiss away the tears.

No comments: