total power exchangeWhen my Dom first told me he wanted me to be a more powerful submissive, I thought he was secretly telling me he no longer wanted me to submit to him. This was a huge assumption on my part and completely inaccurate. The realization of what Total Power Exchange (TPE) is caught my attention because it illustrated a huge problem with the way so many people in my life have looked at submissives; assuming that they must be weak, passive, and powerless. This couldn’t be further from the truth.

TPE - Total Power Exchange


In reality, for a total power exchange to work properly, the sub must also be strong, direct, brave and powerful.


What my Dom wanted was for me to be at my best. Happy, confident, secure, sexy, powerful… because being at my best meant that I would be submitting to him with enthusiasm, not desperation. It meant I was handing over that much more power to him. Something I wouldn’t be able to do if I were weak or passive.

If a submissive has no power to give, how can they hand it over?


While I know very well where these assumptions came from—bad movies, books, and articles written by people that either don’t know, or have had unhealthy D/s relationships—they are inaccurate and take away from what a powerful submissive is.

Powerful submission became clear the first time I was able to stand tall, smiling and confident, feeling all my power surging through me, and then look my Dom in the eye and have a total power exchange with him. It was intense, and far more sensational than any time I’d submitted to him prior. His response to me was stronger when I was a powerful submissive.

When I began embracing my Dominant side, I didn’t understand this concept yet. The first girls that submitted to me weren’t at their peak of power. So while spanking them and pulling their hair offered fun,

...there was a lack of total power exchange that I’ve now come to crave.


These girls slouched, were bratty, and often couldn’t articulate who they were or what they needed from me. This left me having to guess what their needs were, and ultimately this bored me.

Then I logged into FetLife and a subby girl popped up on my feed. She was only twenty, which is out of my age range, but something about her caught my eye. She’d referred to herself as ‘prey’ and with one little claim showed me she was already far ahead of the others. She knew this about herself and was proud of who she was. Her ability to be a powerful submissive brought out more power in me, as I knew if I wanted to pursue her, I’d need to be at my peak of power as well. The level of power play was hot!

Being a powerful submissive doesn’t mean you have to know everything or be perfect. What it means is striving for growth and owning who you are. It means standing tall, with shoulders back, and being confident and brave and direct and strong, so that when you can have a total power exchange, you are giving that much more.

Sienna Saint-Cyr writes erotica and blogs about kink, poly, body image, most things relating. Follow her on her website or on Twitter @siennasaintcyr.
Images by David Lytle and Elmo Lovevia Flickr with CC BY 2.0 license

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Posted · Report

I dont understand how this site works at all! Help im really confused. I wrote a few things, and I don't get if i get email feedback. I want TOE but how do i join tbat? So confused Saria

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Posted · Report

I crave and need total power exchange on all levels. Sexually, important that I am used, shated, exploited and sole purpose is for men to get off on me, and women if Im told. I've yet to find a Dom who understands my need to be a fucktoy for him and his fucksub for others. Ropes, restraints, multiples at a time, delightful. I just say yes.

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