Day 23: How to Thrive in a Vanilla World

Good Evening Friends!

Tonight I want to pull up a chair with you as we talk about how to be adult Littles in a big ol’ vanilla world. For those unfamiliar to the term, “vanilla” refers to anyone not in the lifestyle. (Think like vanilla ice cream, and kinky people are…. decadent rocky road. Yum!). In the world of BDSM consent is everything. You learn from the very beginning to talk a lot! You talk about your limits, expectations, and desires. You ask questions as you vet your potential partner. You talk and get to know each others insecurities and any mental baggage. (Lord knows we all have some! 😉 ). Yes, we talk until we’re “blue in the face” and then we talk some more. Consent is at the core of all that we do, because our lifestyle is built upon respect, communication, honesty, trust, and loyalty. Tonight we are going to dissect how to be a Little out in public, and how those principles of consent apply to the vanilla world too. Are you ready? Then, let’s dive in.

I. Being Discreetly Little in Public (the Physical Aspect):

You’ll probably hear me say a million times that being Little is who you are, and not how you’re dressed, or how you act. Your behavior when regressed is simply a manifestation of how you feel inside. Your inner child or “Little Me” is a part of your soul and lives inside of you. It’s a sacred part of you that should always be cherished. When you are out in public you have the right to regress wherever you are. However, you want to always be mindful of who is around you. Just as we get consent from other lifestyle members and make sure we don’t violate their boundaries, we also want to apply those same rules to the outside world. Vanilla people might feel uncomfortable seeing us regressed in public. As such, you’ll need to be discreet when regressing in public so that way you don’t violate anyone’s consent and comfort boundaries. Here are a few ways to easily be Little in public while keeping your regression “undercover”:

  • 🕵️Try wearing your onesie under shorts, overalls, or a skirt to make it blend in like a regular outfit.
  • 🕵️Similarly you can pair a graphic t-shirt with your favorite overalls/dungarees to feel Little inside.
  • 🕵️Wearing a diaper under your clothing (if you’re into diapers) is a great “hidden” way to feel Little in public. You can be small and no one will know a thing!
  • 🕵️Try carrying a plushie-style purse! Most people will swoon over your handbag and have no idea that you’re actually regressed.
  • 🕵️Consider carrying your favorite Little snack in a small travel pack cup to nibble on while you’re on public transportation or if you take a break at the park.
  • 🕵️Head to one of your favorite areas to be Little in public. This can be anywhere from a playground to the beach to a petting zoo… whatever makes you feel regressed. You will blend in with the other people playing and milling about and no one will know that you’re actually playing in Little Space.
  • 🕵️Treat yourself to an ice cream cone out! Most shops look whimsical and playful anyway, so an ice cream shop is an excellent place to go being Little in public. (My local shop has a toy train that runs around the perimeter of the ceiling!).

II. When You Need to Regress in Public (the Behavioral Side):

Learning to act little in public is by far the more tricky part of regressing in public. On one hand you don’t want anyone to overhear for fear of being judged, stared at, or confronted. On the other hand there are times when we can’t help but regress in public. I’ll give you an example. One time I was at my local farm. This is my favorite place to be Little in public because they also have a large petting zoo where you can feed vegetables to the animals. Every time I am face to face with an adorable baby goat, or Abbie the Moo Cow and her big, black tongue I can’t help but regress and squeal! The last time I went the farm it was packed with people. (It’s a popular tourist spot). My Daddy knew that I was going to regress as soon as I saw the animals so he made sure to hold my hand as we wandered between groups of families by the animal pens. Sure enough, I slipped into little space the moment I saw an adorable pig making eye contact at me. (Okay, he was probably staring at my lettuce bag 😂). But as soon as I saw him I regressed.

I didn’t want to squeal so instead I took a deep breath in and did a tiny, happy dance to myself as I flitted over to the piggy. My point is, you will learn how to balance your emotions in public even when regressed, because we never want to alarm vanilla people with our little space. Another trick I use while in public is to envision my little space like a sequin-adorned hat. When I am regressed I am wearing my sequin beret with pride. I am tiny, happy, and usually humming a tune or two. But if I need to shift at a moments notice (which can be hard for our brain to do), I envision simply taking off my hat and putting on a normal “Big Me” hat. This helps my brain quickly process and shift as needed. You will learn your own strategies to weave in and out of little space in public too. Always remember that you have nothing to be ashamed of being little in public. Just keep practicing and you’ll feel more confident with each trip out!

Here are a few quick tips about behavioral things to consider:

  • 🍼 Consider bringing a cute water bottle or discreet sippy cup with you in place of a feeding bottle or pacifier.
  • 🍼If you like having something to play with in your hands, there are many soft baby toys that are perfect to keep in your pocket so you can feel it while you’re out in public.
  • 🍼If you become non-verbal in Little Space try to aim for regressing in a place where you don’t need to socially interact with anyone. That way your little space won’t be interrupted.
  • 🍼Consider bringing a coloring book and crayons to a picnic table at the park so you can be outside in public while still regressed.

III. Telling Vanilla People About Being a Little:

The last point I’d like to touch upon is how to tell vanilla people that you’re an adult little. Now I should preface that presumably by “vanilla people” I mean your friends or family. If you’re out in public and a random stranger sees you regressed and questions you about it, in no way are you obligated to tell them about your little space. (For your safety I highly recommend you never share personal information like that with anyone you don’t trust!). But I digress.

If your vanilla friends and family begin to question you about why you’re acting “childish” or doing things that come across as juvenile to them there are a few things to consider:

🍭I don’t recommend revealing your little space to anyone who is going to judge you critically. If you think the person is going to be accepting, go for it. Otherwise, you can simply say that you are trying out a new look, or that you’re feeling quiet (if they saw you regressed).

🍭I also understand (from growing up in a conservative background) that family can pass judgement against our lifestyle so harshly that if they found out it could endanger your living situation. If this is the case I highly recommend you keeping your little space to yourself. Your well-being is the most important thing.

If you choose to come out to your loved ones here are a few tips that I recommend:

  • Keep your explanation simple. Explain things in a way that they will understand. I told my mom that I have an inner child that never got a chance to experience being young, creative, and free when I was actually young. As such, there are times when I need to revert psychologically to a young child to nurture my inner child. As an educator she understood (at least intellectually) what I meant and that helped her process the news better.
  • Give them time to process and ask questions. Knowledge is power and the more in touch with yourself (and the lifestyle) you are, the better off you will be to field questions from family members and friends. Take time for self-reflection. Think about why you are an adult little. How did you come to reach this decision? Consider writing your answers down in a keepsake journal.
  • Remind them that your inner Little is a part of who you are. You are still the same person just because you are a Little. You enjoy the same things and are still the same person they’ve always known. Reiterate this point if need be. Your vanilla loved ones might be shocked and confused by your news, but eventually they’ll come to understand you better and appreciate knowing who you are that much more.

Alright my friends, that’s it from me for this post. I hope you all enjoyed it. If you did, hit that like button and let me know. Smash that follow button if you’re new around here, and I will see you back here for the next topic!

Much love,

~Penny x