Anticipatory vs Reactive Service

For those in service to their Dom, Domme, Master, or Mistress the are several approaches on how to serve. They go by different names like preventative, curative, and restorative. However, for our purposes we will use anticipatory and reactive service. So, what are they?

Anticipatory service is is when the s-type partner actively anticipates and meets the needs of the D-type partner before those needs are expressed. This type of service requires the s-type to be attentive, observant, and to carefully act with haste. The s-type is expected to be proactive in their service and take initiative to fulfill their partner’s needs, wants, and desires. For instance, without being asked, checking your D-type’s bathroom for a full toilet paper roll and fresh hand towels.

On the other hand, reactive service is when the s-type responds to the D-type partner’s commands or actions. This might manifest as specific instructions or set of rituals and customs which the D-type previously established. For example, if your D-type’s drink is dry you wait for them to tell or ask for a new one. Ostensibly, this approach is less demanding. However, for those of us whose natural inclination is anticipatory service, it can feel like serving with one hand tied behind your back.

My own experiences are a blend of both approaches. Overall, I fall into the anticipatory category, but I am merely human. Anticipating every need all the time can be taxing especially with other stimuli. Both approaches have their own unique benefits and disadvantages. Reactive service allows the s-type to focus on following instructions and responding to demands to the letter. Whereas anticipatory service enables the s-type to be in tune with their D-type insomuch as feeling like a mind-reader!

It’s important to note that communication, as always, is key to ensure that both parties feel comfortable and confident with the approach they are providing and receiving. Talk to your doctor if you- just kidding. But seriously, have an open discussion with your partner on what they prefer and when. Sometimes they may want both approaches depending on the situation. For example, in new environments such as your D-type’s home where their spouse lives is not the best place for anticipatory service. One would seem rude rifling through cabinets to look for a glass.

There are no clear winners in anticipatory versus reactive approaches to service. Both are used to explore different aspects of the dynamic between s- and D-types. The most important thing is that you customize them for your relationship and clearly communicate these wants and needs. Because ultimately, the choice of service depends entirely upon the preferences and comfort levels of all participants.

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