What Is Crossover?

Author: Raven Shadowborne © 1998


Crossover is when a dominant gives you orders and you follow them in real life. They can be anything from going to bed at a certain time, to sexual activities and daily rituals.  

I have heard of crossover going to the extent of a submissive's day to day life being controlled by a dominant through the computer screen.  

Crossover should not start until it has been thoroughly discussed and limits agreed to. Just how far are you willing to follow the orders of someone you have never met? It isn't something that happens in every relationship on IRC but there are many who expect it. So it is a good idea to know what it is and think about what you would feel comfortable with before the situation arises.  

As a submissive it is a good idea not to allow crossover until you have a solid relationship going and there is a good level of trust between you and the dominant. (This takes a bit more than a few days or a couple weeks, I would recommend at least 3-6 months) That you know the dominant will not order you to do anything that will physically harm you or run a high risk of hurting yourself. You have the right to refuse an order if you fear for your physical safety. (This right to say now changes a bit if you take a collar that the dominant considers to cross over into real life, so it's a good idea to discuss crossover possibilities before taking a collar) There are many people online who are new to the lifestyle and unaware of the possible dangers of the things they ask a submissive to do. Start out slow with crossover, small things like maybe a set bedtime (just an example) and work your way up to bigger things as the relationship develops further.  

As a dominant you need to bear in mind that using crossover as a means to deepen and strengthen the relationship is something not to be taken lightly. If you enter into this level of a an online relationship, you are taking the relationship into real life. Such crossover can cause the submissive to develop very real and very strong emotions towards you. So if you wish to avoid that type of emotional entanglement it may be a good idea to not engage in crossover activities. Be aware that many submissives, out of fear of reprisal, will follow your orders despite misgivings of their own personal safety. Far too many new submissives on IRC believe they should do whatever a dominant tells them. A dominant who has any idea of what they are doing will not abuse that naiveté in a submissive.  

Some basic rules of thumb for crossover:  

1: Honestly discuss expectations, any limitations, and emotions involved with the crossover activity  

2: Ensure the activity is well thought out prior to implementing it, be aware of physical dangers. 

     I once heard a dominant order a submissive to assume a very precarious position in a bathtub and give herself an enema using the tap with her back to the faucet and there was no one there to ensure she didn't hurt herself. Bathrooms being the number one area for household accidents, this should have been more carefully planned as the submissive could have really injured herself with a slip in the tub. Also the submissive had never had an enema before, nor given herself one and she was alone in the house. All of which the dominant knew. Being new to the lifestyle she thought she had to follow orders. He, being new also, didn't think of the repercussions of his order. Luckily she did not get hurt.
3: It is a good idea to start out slow with crossover, take your time easing into it. Allow for adjustments on both sides. Bringing the lifestyle into reality through a computer screen is a lot different than reality. You have to allow for those differences to be worked out.  

4: Know just how far you are willing to go before agreeing to crossover.  

5: If you are married, discuss the possibility of crossover with your spouse before doing it. Remember your spouse should come first in your life, to hide crossover activities is tantamount (in some people's eyes) to committing adultery.  

6: Remember, as a submissive you do have the right to say no. If crossover is something you decide you can not do or do not wish to do, you have the right to refuse. If the dominant you are with insists (even going so far as to say you are not a submissive because you are refusing) then that dominant is not for you as he/she is not respecting your limits.  

7: If crossover is agreed to, there should at least have been some phone contact prior to crossover activity. A person can learn more about another by talking voice as it's called.  

Be aware, as always, these are real people you are dealing with. IRC has a lot more impact upon a person than many realize. Take into consideration all possibilities of your actions before you move the relationship into real life. There are a lot of really dangerous people out there, stalkers, rapists, murderers and the like. You are the only one who can protect yourself. (This goes both ways, there are just as many obsessive women as there are men.)  

As always, follow the tenets of D/s..safe sane and consensual and you'll have a better experience. Have fun!!  

*These are just my thoughts and opinions and are not meant as a steadfast rule. The intent of this essay is simply to educate those who are on IRC or new to IRC and give a basis to work from to those who wish it.  






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