Q & A: How to start Domestic Discipline?

Since we began Learning Domestic Discipline four years ago we have spent a great deal of time covering the ins and outs of beginning the domestic discipline lifestyle. Being new to domestic discipline can bring a lot of frustrations, challenges and decisions into your relationship but as we (and many others) always say – it is all worth it long term. Even though we have a lot of posts and other resources dedicated to beginning the lifestyle the fact still remains that we receive a lot of emails from those wondering how to begin the lifestyle, and more importantly what the first steps should be.


Those questions often go something like this…

Question: I finally (finally!) after quite awhile of trying was able to get my partner on board and okay with domestic discipline. But, we have no idea where to go from there. It seems like he is just sitting around waiting for me to do something he doesn’t like so he can step into his HOH role, whereas I’m sitting around trying to figure out what the boundaries even are. I know there’s more to this lifestyle than just consequences and rules but we just don’t know where to begin with our roles if nothing has happened yet. Can you help?

Answer: First, please remember that everyone was a beginner at one point or another with the lifestyle. You definitely aren’t alone in your confusion and frustrations, as we think those are similar feelings that people have felt at one point.

The complicated thing about domestic discipline is trying to figure out how to get accustomed to the roles and responsibilities that come with those roles without just waiting around for something to happen (as the question illustrates). Although both parties may be eager to begin the lifestyle, few actually know how to begin and that’s where we’re here to help. Below are a few of our tips.

1) Create a rules list, if you haven’t already. Defining boundaries for the submissive partner is extremely important, especially when first beginning the lifestyle, and knowing what to enforce and when to enforce it is equally important for the HOH. You can find more on creating a rule list by searching “rules list” (or another similar term of your choosing) in the search box in the upper right hand corner.

2) Create and sign a domestic discipline contract. These aren’t mandatory for a successful domestic discipline relationship, but many couples do find them helpful, especially in outlining what each person is okay and not okay with, the rules, consequences, and more. You can find more information, as well as example contracts, here.

3) Consider doing beginner boot camp. This is designed for those new to the lifestyle to get accustomed to their roles and starting the lifestyle off on a solid foundation.

4) Begin to think about what small changes you can make within yourself that would positively benefit your relationship. Remember that the goal with domestic discipline is never to jump or rush into anything. Instead, identify a few key areas to work on and begin improving those. For example, if you’re the HOH you may want to set goals surrounding consistency and how to maintain it from the beginning. You also might want to begin to slowly take a more authoritative approach on areas of your relationship that are currently struggling and/or lacking leadership. If you’re the submissive partner, you may want to start identifying areas in which you need to loosen up the control (slowly).

Those are just a few ways to get started with domestic discipline right away without feeling like you have to sit around and wait for something to happen (as many often put it). As with all elements of domestic discipline, it’s important to remember to take things slow and not rush into anything, and also to build a support system early on by connecting with other domestic discipline couples. Having that support system, especially for beginners, is crucial.

For those of you who are new to the lifestyle, welcome!

– Clint & Chelsea

You can also check out Domestic Discipline Boot Camp for beginners here.


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