Dominant Red Flag: Safeword Usage Ban or Limitation

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Dominant Red Flag: Safeword Usage Ban or Limitation

Good day, Friend. Kayteezee here, with part two of a four-part series on red flags to notice if you’re considering a dominant. Read the first red flag here. I want to reiterate that the presence of a flag is not necessarily an indication that you should opt-out. I’m suggesting that these are things to notice.

The second flag I would like you to consider is a dominant who either doesn’t believe in safewords (on any level) or has a rule that you can only use a safeword once.

What are Safewords?

Safewords are agreed-upon verbal or non-verbal signals that something needs to shift or stop. The most common ones I know of align with a stop sign: green means go, yellow means slow, red means stop. Clearly, within the context of an ongoing relationship, it might be odd to blurt out on a Wednesday morning, RED. Within the context of a scene, however, it makes very good sense to have signals and ways for you and me as submissives to signal to our dominants that we need something to change.

If you are considering a new dominant, and they tell you ‘no safewords’ or ‘you can only safeword once, and then the relationship is over,’ please proceed with extreme caution.

Should I Still Pursue Play with a Dominant Like This?

Please go extremely slowly with regard to play. What I mean by this is consider keeping your body out of restraints and your eyes, mouth, and ears free from anything that would impede whatever level of ability you already have to see, speak, and hear for a while. Staying out of restraints will help you to move. This is good because you will literally be able to walk away if said dominant goes somewhere you’re uncomfortable with. You use your words and say something like, ‘this is too much for me right now,’ and see what happens.

Why is that important? Well, in the absence of red/yellow/green, you will need to communicate a need (which I suggest you do regardless) and see what happens. If the dominant you are considering adjusts behavior: if they do, that is a signal that they have empathy and pay attention; if they don’t, then you have a data point.

Managing Power Exchange Expectations

I suggest the same with regard to how you set up your power/authority dynamic. Small steps. Correlations in relationships that map to what I suggested in scenes include not giving any of your private information right away, maintaining as much control over your schedule as is right for you, and limiting the pervasiveness of the power exchange to chunks of time.

Be fully you. Share what you need. Express what you like. Think of your new relationship like a tasting menu; many small bites make for an amazing meal.

Please also remember — you are an autonomous being. You are choosing to be in this dynamic, even if you have a need for it. I have a need for these dynamics as well. It can be tempting in the intoxication to forget oneself. Just please be aware that dominants who don’t believe in safewords and/or who only will give you one might be problematic.

‘Til next time,


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