When I first started exploring the world of spanking sites, I was drawn mostly to the stories. It was easier to approach the subject through a layer of fantasy. Some concepts I found deeply disturbing at the time (and some I still do). In the world of fiction, nothing ever hurt too much, no one was every truly cruel or harmful. And of course, a pleasantly twisty plot line and/or a healthy dose of magic helps. Or knights and dragons. Or boarding schools where all of the pupils somehow happen to be girls over eighteen. Everyone was happy and whole at the end. And if they weren’t, I’d stop reading and ignore it or invent my own ending.
Yes, I know that real people in real D/S relationships have real issues just like the rest of the real world, but I really wasn’t ready to get into all that. I needed to ponder this in a vacuum, isolated from reality to focus on what the desire truly was.
Trying to work it out with a real person will doubtless bring complications- hopefully the fun kind but definitely a mix.