Developing sub/slave Training Programs Part 1: The Assessment Phase
Author: SAADE

Opening Statement:

It is an awesome responsibility when someone asks you for training. Novice Dominants often jump at the chance to prove their prowess without thinking about the time commitment and the entire scenario. This often leads to a mismatch in personalities and expectations. These undetected mismatches lead to training disasters, hurt feelings and tarnished reputations.

In training situations, the Dominant holds the primary responsibility. Part of taking responsibility as a principle trainer is 'knowing' what your personal expectations are. What exactly do you want to get out of the situation? Then clearly communicating these expectations to the submissive.

Present these expectations in early discussions and negotiations. It should be restated in the form of a written training contract.

So, ask yourself two questions. 1) Am I willing to train for training sake? and 2) What do I want to get out of this. Know what your expectations are before you entering into a training contract.

Training Phases:

For me submissive / slave training is basically broken down into two phases: The Assessment Phase and the Training Program.

The Assessment Phase determines 1) if want to train a particular sub and 2) the answers gathered dictate the overall direction and structure of the training program.

Assessments:

Assessing Tendencies:

It is equally important to determine the expectations and / or natural preponderance of the submissive. Some subs are hesitant to share this information. If they are attracted to you, they may not want to jeopardize the chance to get to know you better. Some honestly wonít know what to expect from a training session.

This is a technique presented in the Miss Abernathy's books.

Use simple question /answers quizzes can help reveal tendencies. They arenít always 100% accurate but for the most part are revealing and useful. At first I used the ones in the book but as I saw how the questionnaires were constructed I created my own.

Assessing Obedience & Willingness:

Require written assignments. Make sure these assignments have a clearly defined deadline for completion.

If a sub/slave has trouble obeying and working with you a reasonable deadline, they will never make it through a serious training program. Following directions is a critical part of any training and the 'written assignment' exercise reveals willingness to comply.

If they fail consistently do not go forward with the training. This requirement will save you hours of wasted time and work.

Three assignments: 1) Start with Miss Abernathy's Quiz. 2) 2/3 - Minute Quiz. and 3) start a slaves journal.

Assessing Openness:

Immediately place the trainee under a full disclosure policy. Under this rule you test the ability of the submissive to be open and honest. It is also an information-gathering tool for structuring training and play.

Use this technique carefully. Depending on the type of training you are planning require an accounting of sexual preferences, (monogamous / poly relationships) fantasies, past encounters in the BDSM world, an accounting of things that have gone wrong and things that have gone right. At this juncture you are getting a read on fears, limits and determining strengths at this stage.

It is equally important to know both spoken limitations and physiological limitations. This may come out in intimate discussions. What are the hard limits or are there any injuries you should be aware of.

Risk Assessments

Assessing Health Risk:

Never embark on a training program of this type without assessing any health risk that may occur to you or your trainee. Set down and have a heart to heart talk about health issues.

Assessing Work Risk:

If a submissive is employed be sure to get look at the impact of such a training program will have on the work environment. Can the sub play in public or attend D/s affairs in the local area? Is there a danger an 'outing' would jeopardize a livelihood?

Assessing Home Life:

Is the sub married and does the spouse or significant other know about the subs interest in D/s? Does the sub vanilla friends now about the D/s interest and do they share there experiences with them? If the neighbors discovered the D/s interest would there be serious repercussions?

Assessing Outside Professionalís Influences:

Is the sub working with a spiritual councilor, therapist or psychologist? Are these professionals aware of and accepting of the D/s interest?

Assessing Limits and Range:

It important to get an idea of the range and limits of your play partner.

Training Contracts:

By the time you have finished this type of assessment you have an idea if you want to work with this trainee.

Now is the time to consider the depth and time frame that you will spend with someone.
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