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    I thought I would write a little and provide some useful information about subdrop and aftercare, since I have just had to help a close friend deal with her first experience of subdrop and although she knew what it was, she did not realise that is what she was going through and did not know how to deal with it.

    What Is Subdrop?

    Subdrop is the emotional and physical symptoms felt by a submissive that is caused by tiring out the body and the release of adrenalin, endorphins, hormones and other chemicals that create a natural high during a scene, leading to a subsequent ‘come down’ afterwards, similar to the effects of illicit drugs.  It can leave a sub feeling exhausted, depressed, sad and very emotional. This can include feelings of guilt, shame, embarrassment and other negative thoughts, but you should realise that this is simply your body’s natural response to a very intense experience, it is not your fault, you have done nothing wrong and you are not to blame.

    Subs will often experience subdrop in different ways, some may feel the effects of it more intensely than others and it can last for varying periods of time, anywhere from an hour up to a few weeks afterwards, but it is only temporary and will eventually pass. It is important that you learn to recognise subdrop, because once you understand that you are feeling the effects of it, you can begin to address it and simply knowing why you are feeling that way will also help, especially when it comes to your emotions and feelings. Try to communicate, interact and stay in contact with your Dom or others, who can help you cope with your emotions and how you are feeling, by offering you support and talking you through it.  Following the other advice I have included below will also help you recover from the effects of subdrop.

    For the all the Doms, Dommes, Masters and Mistresses out there, this is just as crucial for You, as it is for Your sub. Subdrop is very real and not some myth, so aftercare and helping Your sub deal with the effects of it should be just as important as what You might do during a scene, especially as You are essentially responsible for Your sub feeling the effects of it and caring for Your sub is part of the responsibility that comes with being a Dominant. Aftercare should not be neglected and staying in contact with Your sub, offering them reassurance, validation and support will help during this vulnerable time and they should not have to go through this alone.  Although some subs do prefer time to themselves, You should at least offer and ask what You can do to help, as everyone is different and their needs will vary.

    If You do neglect aftercare and ignore subdrop, then the effects can begin to outweigh the benefits and enjoyment that Your sub may feel during a scene with You, which can cause problems for Your relationship with them and even end it. It is also worth pointing out that Dominants and switches can also feel a form of ‘drop’ after a scene, which I won’t address, but You can read more about it in the links I have provided at the end of this article.

    So What Is Aftercare?

    Aftercare is the name given to the process of being there with a partner for a sufficient amount of time, so they can feel safe, regain their emotional equilibrium and recover from the effects of a scene. It is equally important to recognise that aftercare is for both the Top and bottom, Dominant and submissive. If either person leaves too soon, then their partner may feel abandoned or a loss far exceeding the pleasure they might have felt during the scene.

    Aftercare can include practical things such as making sure a sub is physically taken care of, treating any injuries, keeping them warm, allowing them to rest and making sure they have enough to eat or drink. Aftercare should also include attending to the emotional needs of a sub by offering them support, reassurance and validation.  This can include showing them affection by cuddling or holding them, even gentle and loving sex, as well as asking how they are feeling, talking through the scene with them and their experience, answering any questions they might have and giving them a lot of positive reinforcement, such as saying how proud You are of them. This can continue after you have parted ways and for several days afterwards, by staying in contact and checking on their recovery.

    Although like subdrop, everyone has a different experience and needs when it comes to aftercare, some for instance may want to be left alone to process this on their own and there is no right or wrong way, it simply involves doing whatever is necessary to help them recover.

    How To Cope With Subdrop

    A few ways you can help your body recover and deal with the effects of subdrop include:

    • ACE which stands for aftercare, contact with your Dominant and expression of positive reinforcement by the Dominant.
    • Drink plenty of water or a sports drink like gatorade, which help replace fluids, salts and potassium in the body that you have lost during a scene.
    • Eat foods to replenish the nutrients in your body, while you might crave comfort foods and sugary treats, which will not only replace the sugar and energy you have lost, but obviously give you some sense of comfort, the effects will be only temporary and will only leave you craving more, which is not ideal.  Instead try to eat whole grain bread, meat, cheese and vegetables, while avoiding any foods that are white in colour, although milk is also very helpful.
    • Take some vitamins, especially the B-complex group that include folic acid, vitamin B6 and B12.
    • Be active and interact with others, even if you do not feel like doing so, as subdrop often leaves a sub feeling ashamed, depressed, isolated, confused and alone, so being by yourself and trying to cope on your own will only make those feelings worse. Even spending time with your pet can be helpful. Most importantly stay in contact with your Dominant and try to talk to them about how you are feeling, so They can help you cope.
    • Exercise will help release more endorphins, lessening the effects of subdrop, which is partly caused by the release of endorphins during a scene and the subsequent ‘come down’ that occurs afterwards.
    • Try keeping yourself occupied, with a hobby or other activity which will allow you to clear your head or express your feelings.
    • Aroma therapy, warm baths, meditation and listening to soothing music is also helpful.
    • Try to stay warm.
    • Treat and care for any injuries you might have sustained during the scene, such as scratches, bites, welts or sore bottoms. I am not a doctor and I could not possibly hope to cover every potential scenario in this article, but generally applying basic first aid techniques and vitamin E cream will help your skin recover more quickly.
    • Rest and get plenty of sleep.
    • Try to get yourself ready before a scene, by getting plenty of sleep, trying to stay focused and preparing yourself for the experience.

    Additional Reading

    You can find a useful article on the subject of subdrop here. While these are an excellent series of very extensive articles on aftercare and subdrop for submissives, Dominants, switches and also emergency self-administered aftercare.

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    more articles in the Library For Kinksters.

    This is an important read. Especially if you are new to D/s. Subdrop is very real and NOTHING to ever be ashamed of.