Society doesn’t look kindly on blatant displays of kink; leashes in the shopping mall and kneeling for your dinner just Aren’t Done. But when you’re diving into the D/s part of BDSM—dominance and submission—sometimes you just don’t want to stop! It’s heady stuff, and if it turns out to be a super core part of your relationship dynamic, setting it aside can feel wrenching.
Thankfully, there are many ways that people can play with the D/s dynamic out in public, while not frightening the horses. Only you two will know what’s going on, and that’s incredibly hot. You just have to recalibrate your senses and enjoy the subtleties!
Choice of attire
Next time you go out, let the dominant partner decide what their sub will wear. The decision happens behind closed doors, but once you’re out there walking around, you will definitely remember who instructed you to leave the panties at home or get your highest stilettos on. When you decide what your partner is wearing, it tells the other person that you like thinking about them and the way they look, that you care enough about their appearance that you have a preference, and that you have, in this moment, asserted control over that.
Remember accessories, too! Leashes may be off limits, but collars aren’t, or cuffs, ankle bracelets, etc. If collaring/cuffing is part of your lifestyle, but you aren’t out 24/7, consider picking wearables for different occasions. Your brand of kink may also suggest other kinds of costume touches, eg kitty ears for a “pet,” a brighter hair clip or Mary Jane shoes for a “little girl,” etc. These may not work at the Ritz-Carlton, but these days they’ll fly just about anywhere else.
Wearable sex-toy technology has gotten pretty advanced over the past five or ten years, so the demi-exhibitionists among us have a wide variety of options to fit in underneath the clothing. Insertables like butt plugs and strap-in dildos/vibrators are exciting, as are cock rings and labia jewelry. Remember clamps, too, for the nipples and clit! With all of these things, remember to wear them first around the house, so you know what to expect as you sit, stand, and walk. Most of us are used to sex toys only in active sex situations; you don’t want to discover undesired discomfort or pain on your way to the restaurant.
Many couples touch each other when out in public: hand holding, arms around each other, kisses, etc. If you’re the dom(me), you only have to crank it up a little to really drive home the point about who is driving. A subtle pinch to the arm, a gentle (and slightly embarrassing) tap to the cheek or nose, a very firm grip at the nape of the neck… these all can enhance your dynamic without really alerting anyone to it. Even a quick spank walking down the sidewalk is still within bounds. Unless it’s a sidewalk in front of a church.
Even if it’s your normal M.O. with your sub, a dom(me) shouldn’t be issuing brusque orders in a public non-kink space, unless they want people to think they’re an abusive asshole. However, a polite request or a casual offer is a great way to re-affirm to each other your relationship. “Sweetheart, could you get me another napkin on your way back from the restroom?” or “Can I bring you a drink?” will not raise any brows. If your request is borderline, simply lean over and whisper into their ear.
Remember that scene from Secretary? “A spoonful of creamed potatoes, a slice of butter, four peas, and all the ice cream you want, doll.” Okay, so I definitely remembered it, and trust me, this sort of thing plays just FINE out in public. As long as your dominant knows your hard limits in terms of food, and you trust them to have your tastes and nutritional needs in mind, having them decide what you are going to eat can be a beautiful thing. It’s partly a control thing, and partly for the caring and nurturing implied.