Subdrop: A physical condition, may present as an intense depression with a lack of energy and fragile psychological state, experienced by a submissive after an intense session of BDSM play without the recommended aftercare.
Conversely, subdrop may present itself as anxiety, irritability, paranoia, and/or feelings of diminishment. It is also important to remember that subdrop is not limited to or dependent upon a physical scene. A submissive may experience subdrop any time he is in a submissive headspace.
A submissive, especially a new submissive, requires constant praise and reassurance that his actions and reactions please his Dominant. The worry that that he has not satisfied his Master or made Him proud is always there. Some Dominants assume by showing their pleasure through actions, this is enough.
While a submissive works hard to anticipate his Dominant’s needs and meet his demands, he is not a mind reader. A brush of his hair or a kiss on the forehead can be taken in many different contexts, and neither are sufficient to alleviate the submissive’s anxiety that he has in some way failed in his duties.
Following an intense scene, it is not uncommon for a Dominant to experience Dom High. He may feel increased levels of confidence and a sense of god-like invincibility. This is where things tend to get tricky.
Subspace and Dom High don’t mix.
Subspace: A "natural high" that a sub (or bottom) gets during a scene or when being controlled. The sub may feel disconnected from time, space, and/or their body, and may have limited ability to communicate. It is critical that a Dom(me)/Top take responsibility for the sub/bottom and be aware of their sub's wellbeing if they are in subspace.
This is the time the submissive most needs to hear that he has done a good job and has pleased his Master. While feelings of euphoria are the commonly discussed effects of subspace, this is also the time the submissive is the most vulnerable and sensitive to subtle shifts in mood or demeanor.
Aftercare: The time after a BDSM scene or play session in which the participants calm down, discuss the previous events and their personal reactions to them, as well as slowly come back in touch with reality. This is also the part of the scene that oftentimes involves the most intimacy where the Dominant cares for, praises, and reassures the submissive of their pleasure from the scene. BDSM can involve an endorphin high and is a very intense experience. Therefore, failure to engage in proper aftercare can lead to subdrop as the endorphins return to more everyday levels.
A Dominant’s overconfidence during aftercare can produce negative consequences for His submissive. The Dominant may be feeling like a god, like He answers to no one but Himself, but He is only one partner in the relationship. Simply wielding power over another person is not dominance. If a man wishes to be called Master, he must behave as a Master. Immediately following a scene, a submissive needs to be reminded he is wanted, valued, and is viewed as more than an object.
During Dom High, it is not unusual for the Dominant to feel extreme possessiveness toward His submissive. While logical boundaries should be maintained between a Top and bottom during “play,” a Dominant’s outward possessiveness fuels His submissive’s euphoria, leaving him confident in his place.
A submissive feels most comfortable when he knows his place and what is required of him. Knowing he can rely on his Dominant to fulfill his needs provides a sense of security. Subdrop can occur when this feeling of security is threatened. A submissive needs to believe he is needed. He takes great pride in caring for his Master, no matter what He may require of him. A submissive also needs to feel he has met and exceeded his Dominant’s expectations.
It is the Dominant’s responsibility to ensure these needs of the submissive are met. When a Dominant becomes overconfident, either in Himself or in His assumptions, He is neglecting His obligations. While there are exceptions, such as when a bottom becomes emotionally attached to his Top for a time that extends beyond the scene, subdrop falls mostly on the Dominant.
Lack of proper aftercare is detrimental to a submissive’s psychological mindset, creating feelings of insecurity, worthlessness, and neediness. Additionally, a Dominant who does not show the appropriate care and attention after a scene runs the risk of damaging His submissive’s trust.
A submissive who is left to spiral once will remember the fall in the future, causing him to consciously or subconsciously resist attaining subspace and diminishing the pleasure of the scene for both parties.