I think this is one of the most misunderstood relationships there could ever be. When people think of being dominant, they may think of whips and chains, handcuffs, etc, but that's not what it's truly about. I'm writing this so people can better understand some of the misconceptions of a dominant/submissive relationship...and I mean a relationship, not just seeking the thrill of being either a dominant or a submissive because it turns you on. There are some people that do just that and nothing else, and there is a difference.
I think what a lot of people fail to realize is that the submissive has all of the power. The dominant can exert their will, but the submissive can say no. Saying no is the greatest and ultimate power. That ability gives the submissive everything. However, that power must not be abused, ever. Because not only does the submissive have all of the power in the relationship, but it's also about trust. Total and complete trust. Submissives give themselves willingly, trusting in their partner to care for them in every way they need to be cared for. They trust that, when they give themselves completely to their partner, they will be nurtured. It is also about obeying. You're given an order, you follow it. It's in this that I personally find a thrill. It's also the fact that you belong to someone else, and not just your body. You are theirs, and only theirs.
Not only does the dominant take what the submissive so willingly gives, but they also give back. This is another misunderstood aspect of the relationship. They, too, give all of themselves. Willingly. In order for trust to work, the submissive needs to know that they will receive as much as they give. However, the dominant still has dominance. It can be a fine line to find, but it's at the point the dominant gives orders and the submissive obeys.
Another misunderstood concept is that this isn't just regarding sex. It encompasses the entire relationship, the giving and taking of yourselves to each other, in everything...body, mind, and spirit. It's really quite amazing when you find someone with whom you can have this relationship with, perfectly. It's incredibly rare, because a lot of times, something can be lopsided in the relationship, or someone doesn't understand some aspect of how it's supposed to be. Finding the perfect balance, and just being with someone in this manner..it's like..home.
It's also important to say that this kind of relationship isn't anything to be entered into lightly. It's nothing like what you've read in 50 Shades of Grey. The relationship between dominant and submissive is grossly misrepresented in those books. People can get hurt if you don't find the delicate balance of give and take, and it may not be found easily. Completely giving yourself to another person is not a simple matter, or one to take lightly. It's also important that you don't give yourself to the wrong person because a dominant or a submissive can abuse the relationship, which can be immensely hurtful.