What Does "True" and "Real" Mean?

Spend any time in BDSM forums and you'll find many people talking about “true” and “real”:

So what do these mean?

Aside from disparaging everyone else in the world who isn't a true whatever, who isn't a real whatever.

Especially since examples of what is supposed to make someone “true” or “real” are contradictory.

A true Dom cares about their sub’s feeling. A true Dom is harsh and unyielding and ignores their sub’s feelings.

Educator, author and artist Midori amusingly pronounces “true” as “twu”.

“He’s a twu dom”.

So when someone says “twu”, I mean “true”, what do they mean?

They mean “the kind of a kink I like”.

Calling something “true” or “real” is an example of desire smuggling.

In this case, using an identity to camouflage a desire.

If, for example, I enjoyed tying up women, I could say, “I like tying up women”.

But it’s vulnerable to express one’s desire so nakedly.

So instead, I could say, "A True Master makes his slave helpful. And I’m a Twu Master!"

Or, more insidiously, I could use blaming to camouflage my desire. "A Twu Slave allows her master to tie her up!"

Which is hardly restricted to tops.

“A Twu Dom cares for his submissive”.

“A Twu Dom respects limits”.

“A Twu Dom doesn't abandon their partner in the middle of a scene”.

Which means what?

“I want my partner to care for me”.

“I want my partner to respect my limits”.

“I want my partner to not abandon me in the middle of a scene”.

Notice how this is empowering.

Complaining about how people aren't being a “true” or a “real” whatever may garner sympathy, but typically doesn’t change anything.

Once you get to the point of stating what you want, then you can start figuring out how to get it.

Can you find a partner who cares about you, or respects your limits, or doesn’t abandon you, or whatever it is that you're looking for?

When you meet someone new, is there a way you can find out whether they meet your criteria?

If they turn out to not fulfill your criteria, what will you do? Use your safeword, not play with them again, report them to the dungeon monitor, call the police? Under what circumstances would you take which actions?

Does your prospective partner know this?

How can you get want you want?

Read more about Power Exchange.