Are you a Dominant or submissive, eager to make the BDSM lifestyle a 24/7 agreement? Maybe you already have a contract, but you now want a full-time dynamic. Total Power Exchange relationships, or TPE, are sometimes seen as the ultimate goal. While they can enhance your role as Dom or sub, making the switch isn’t easy. This online guide will show you the TPE meaning, help you to avoid the most common mistakes, and you’ll also see some examples of how to make it work.
TPE meaning in real-life
On the outside, a Total Power Exchange relationship can look like abuse. And sadly, a lot of subs can confuse the two. TPE is not abuse. Simply put, the TPE meaning is an exchange where all authority is passed from the submissive to the Dominant. It’s a consensual relationship where the Dom has absolute control, and can exercise that control however they see fit.
If you are unsure whether or not your relationship is TPE or abuse, let your instincts be your guide. The goal should be for both partners to feel more fulfilled and taken care of. And no matter what anyone says, the sub always has the right to get out of an abusive relationship.
Who is a TPE agreement good for?
Even though Total Power Exchange might look abusive to vanillas, it can bring incredible meaning and happiness to a Dom/sub couple. I don’t recommend entering a TPE relationship unless you’ve known the person for a very long time, and you 100%, completely trust them. This goes for both the Dom and the sub.
The Dominant should already be showing they respect their sub, and uphold the “safe, sane, consensual” principles of BDSM. And the submissive should be mentally stable, and not using TPE as an excuse to be made weak. After all, the sub can still make some of their own decisions and choices, if the Dom allows them to.
Can online BDSM relationships be TPE?
Online relationships most definitely can be Total Power Exchange, but to a degree. Even though the sub gives up all their power, it will be hard for the Dom to exercise complete control over their sub’s life from a distance. In these kinds of relationships, TPE will be more of a mindset, and the Dom will have to be extra diligent in finding ways to incorporate it into their lives.
You can also check out my guide for online and long-distance BDSM relationships here to give you some examples.
Examples of Total Power Exchange in relationships
Although a Total Power Exchange relationship can be any form of Dom/sub, like DD/lg, Owner/pet, or Boss/secretary, it is most likely a Master/slave agreement. Just like in real life, a Master has complete and total control over a slave, so it also is in TPE. Here are some examples of what it can look like in BDSM:
- Controlling the slave’s finances and career
- Choosing the slave’s clothing, diet, and other aspects of day to day life
- Establishing and enforcing non-negotiable rules and protocols
- Using the slave whenever and however sexually
(Feel free to share your favorite examples of TPE in the comments below.)
Do you still need a contract or written agreement for TPE?
Since the TPE meaning is that nothing prohibits the Dom from having all control, a contract might seem contradictory. I don’t think that’s completely the case though. A contract can lay out the fact that the relationship is a TPE agreement, and list the expectations and requirements of the sub still.
You can read my online guide on BDSM contracts here for more examples of what you can include.
Even though a Total Power Exchange can be the ultimate goal for those who practice BDSM, it should never be rushed into. If you wish to enter this type of arrangement, make sure you fully understand first the true meaning of it, and what is involved. I don’t regret for one second entering a TPE relationship with my Dom, and I hope it can be successful for you too.