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Rules vs Requirements vs Protocols


0Naughtys Kitten0

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Rules vs Requirements vs Protocols

I am having a discussion with my Dom about the terms rules and requirements...I was wondering what others thought about the differences. Then the word protocol came to my mind as well.

What are the differences in BDSM as you see it?

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For me I would see the words as the same. Especially in littlespace, I don't think a contract or list of rules should be complicated. Keeping it simple and easy to remember is best in my opinion, because at the end of the day if there is a breaking of a rule or requirement you don't want to have to lawyer with your Dominant about terminology.

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So, I think there’s nuance in each term. 

Requirements: would be what each person states is something they absolutely need, or something that’s a hard limit to be understood. Like someone could say that frequent communication in a relationship is a requirement, or a partner that understands them needing alone time is a requirement.

Rules: Rules would be agreed upon between all parties. So taking the frequent communication idea, it could be implemented as a rule of two messages a day, or sharing a weekly journal.

Protocols: A protocol, in the circles I’ve been in, is a formulated way to do something. It could be based around a rule or not, but it’s a step-by-step instruction on how a certain thing is done. A common example is drink service, so setting out the exact steps of preparation, presentation, etc is a protocol. If we’re gonna continue the frequent communication example I could see if being something like if the method is journal swapping, it being something like the s-type bringing their journal face up on flat palms and kneeling before their d-type, which maybe a specific set of phrases to say. Each step of the process has been pre-determined, which is what makes it a protocol.

Rituals: A lot of times when people bring up protocols, rituals are also brought up.  The best way I’ve heard the difference described is that they absolutely overlap, but that ritual is more about the feeling, so a protocol is how you do a thing, and a ritual is how you feel about a thing. So a protocol done often enough tends to develop a much more intense emotional and energy depth to it and thus evolves into a ritual. Or both people may naturally create some sort of activity that builds that feeling and while it was never consciously mapped out like a protocol, it could be an organically created ritual. 

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14 hours ago, LittlePupRune said:

So, I think there’s nuance in each term. 

Requirements: would be what each person states is something they absolutely need, or something that’s a hard limit to be understood. Like someone could say that frequent communication in a relationship is a requirement, or a partner that understands them needing alone time is a requirement.

Rules: Rules would be agreed upon between all parties. So taking the frequent communication idea, it could be implemented as a rule of two messages a day, or sharing a weekly journal.

Protocols: A protocol, in the circles I’ve been in, is a formulated way to do something. It could be based around a rule or not, but it’s a step-by-step instruction on how a certain thing is done. A common example is drink service, so setting out the exact steps of preparation, presentation, etc is a protocol. If we’re gonna continue the frequent communication example I could see if being something like if the method is journal swapping, it being something like the s-type bringing their journal face up on flat palms and kneeling before their d-type, which maybe a specific set of phrases to say. Each step of the process has been pre-determined, which is what makes it a protocol.

Rituals: A lot of times when people bring up protocols, rituals are also brought up.  The best way I’ve heard the difference described is that they absolutely overlap, but that ritual is more about the feeling, so a protocol is how you do a thing, and a ritual is how you feel about a thing. So a protocol done often enough tends to develop a much more intense emotional and energy depth to it and thus evolves into a ritual. Or both people may naturally create some sort of activity that builds that feeling and while it was never consciously mapped out like a protocol, it could be an organically created ritual. 

Really well said, and I can totally see requirements and rules being different in that light. Thanks for the perspective!

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16 hours ago, LittlePupRune said:

So, I think there’s nuance in each term. 

Requirements: would be what each person states is something they absolutely need, or something that’s a hard limit to be understood. Like someone could say that frequent communication in a relationship is a requirement, or a partner that understands them needing alone time is a requirement.

Rules: Rules would be agreed upon between all parties. So taking the frequent communication idea, it could be implemented as a rule of two messages a day, or sharing a weekly journal.

Protocols: A protocol, in the circles I’ve been in, is a formulated way to do something. It could be based around a rule or not, but it’s a step-by-step instruction on how a certain thing is done. A common example is drink service, so setting out the exact steps of preparation, presentation, etc is a protocol. If we’re gonna continue the frequent communication example I could see if being something like if the method is journal swapping, it being something like the s-type bringing their journal face up on flat palms and kneeling before their d-type, which maybe a specific set of phrases to say. Each step of the process has been pre-determined, which is what makes it a protocol.

Rituals: A lot of times when people bring up protocols, rituals are also brought up.  The best way I’ve heard the difference described is that they absolutely overlap, but that ritual is more about the feeling, so a protocol is how you do a thing, and a ritual is how you feel about a thing. So a protocol done often enough tends to develop a much more intense emotional and energy depth to it and thus evolves into a ritual. Or both people may naturally create some sort of activity that builds that feeling and while it was never consciously mapped out like a protocol, it could be an organically created ritual. 

I couldn't have said it better myself! The only thing I'd want to add would be that in a lot of circles, protocols are also synonymous with expectations. Therefore, a rule could transition to becoming a protocol when it became second nature and no longer something that needed to be enforced. Food for thought!

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On 7/29/2022 at 7:42 AM, LittlePupRune said:

So, I think there’s nuance in each term. 

Requirements: would be what each person states is something they absolutely need, or something that’s a hard limit to be understood. Like someone could say that frequent communication in a relationship is a requirement, or a partner that understands them needing alone time is a requirement.

Rules: Rules would be agreed upon between all parties. So taking the frequent communication idea, it could be implemented as a rule of two messages a day, or sharing a weekly journal.

Protocols: A protocol, in the circles I’ve been in, is a formulated way to do something. It could be based around a rule or not, but it’s a step-by-step instruction on how a certain thing is done. A common example is drink service, so setting out the exact steps of preparation, presentation, etc is a protocol. If we’re gonna continue the frequent communication example I could see if being something like if the method is journal swapping, it being something like the s-type bringing their journal face up on flat palms and kneeling before their d-type, which maybe a specific set of phrases to say. Each step of the process has been pre-determined, which is what makes it a protocol.

Rituals: A lot of times when people bring up protocols, rituals are also brought up.  The best way I’ve heard the difference described is that they absolutely overlap, but that ritual is more about the feeling, so a protocol is how you do a thing, and a ritual is how you feel about a thing. So a protocol done often enough tends to develop a much more intense emotional and energy depth to it and thus evolves into a ritual. Or both people may naturally create some sort of activity that builds that feeling and while it was never consciously mapped out like a protocol, it could be an organically created ritual. 

Before I read your reply, I was able to write a post on my Tumblr that listed a "set"  I had somewhat come to the same conclusion towards what you explained and reading what you wrote was great because it sort of confirmed what I wrote! Thank you for posting!

 

Requirement:

Daddy needs to cum to help get to sleep better

 

Rule:

Must give Daddy a blow/hand job before going to bed

 

Protocol:

- Get settled

- Ask for preference (blow or hand)

- Assume position for activity

- Perform act

- Change method as requested

- Assist in clean up when completed

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  • 2 weeks later...

Great points All... and obviously you and your Daddy had some clear communication regarding 

On 7/30/2022 at 1:00 PM, 0Naughtys Kitten0 said:

Requirement:

Daddy needs to cum to help get to sleep better

 

Rule:

Must give Daddy a blow/hand job before going to bed

 

Protocol:

- Get settled

- Ask for preference (blow or hand)

- Assume position for activity

- Perform act

- Change method as requested

- Assist in clean up when completed

Great points from everyone... and obviously, you and your Dom have had clear communication at some point.. I think that's great!  Sounds like you have a great connection, congratulations to both of you.  

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