Things new submissive guys should probably know, part 1 of many

I was talking with a new submissive guy on Fetlife the other day, and I think the questions and concerns he had are probably common to an awful lot of male submissives. In hopes my advice will be useful to more than one person, here it is.

First of all, it’s totally understandable to look at the stories people tell on the internet and feel like you’re not submissive enough. When you don’t have any frame of reference for kink in real life, it’s very very easy to take people’s stories much too seriously. Yes, people like to talk about how they’ve been in chastity for fifteen months and how they beg on their knees for hours just for the chance just to lick their Mistress’s toe, but that in no way means you should give a shit. Some people do enjoy super long term chastity, and some people do enjoy extremely strict high protocol relationships. What you need to remember is that extremes are called that for a reason – it’s not an extreme if the majority is there. Most people are somewhere in the middle between extreme kink and none at all. And that’s assuming that most of the people talking about how extreme they are, are actually telling the truth, which is just not the case. Take Elise Sutton, for example. Not only is there no fucking chance that Elise is actually a woman, but their advice is both terrible and insulting to women. Having a website doesn’t mean someone is telling the truth. Having testimonials doesn’t mean someone is telling the truth. Having been around for a long time doesn’t mean someone is telling the truth.

Anyone and everyone on the internet could be a total liar. You’re going to need to develop your own judgement about what might have actually happened and what’s definitely just some poor schlub’s fantasy. That will take time and talking with people who are more experienced, but a good place to start is with your own attention span. An intense kinky weekend is a very common fantasy, but how many things can you actually do for 48 hours straight without getting totally sick of them? That’s right, zero. No matter how hot that fantasy is, eventually your knees get sore and your back gets tired and you just want a drink and a snack and half an hour without anyone yelling at you.

Another very important thing to keep in mind that you will be hard pressed to find on the internet (particularly the porny part) is just how much work it is to top in a scene like that. Guys, doms are people. If I do a heavy flogging scene my shoulder is sore for the next couple days. I am not physically capable of beating on someone for more than a couple of hours, let alone an entire weekend. I fucking love hurting people who want to be hurt, but not only do I not have the physical or mental capacity to do that for an entire weekend, but I’d get bored. I love videogames too, but I can only spend a few hours playing The Witcher (no I still haven’t finished it) before I need to do something else for a while.

And to be clear, the “anyone on the internet could be a total liar” thing applies just as much to me as to everyone else. I am just some asshole on the internet, I have absolutely no special qualifications (unless you count being a judgmental jerk). If my advice doesn’t ring true to you, throw it out and do your own thing.

Another very common concern is that dominant women don’t have or like sex and if you get involved with one you’ll never get your sexual needs met. There’s a whole lot to be said about how society fucks things up for women and by extension for straight men by telling women only filthy sluts actually want to have sex, but in the interests of keeping this post from ballooning over 5000 words I’ll just say that you are going to hear a whole hell of a lot about how doms won’t fuck you from prodoms who are sick and fucking tired of men who keep asking for services they don’t offer and that that is not at all relevant to your personal relationship with a dom who you are not paying. Some people do prefer to keep sex out of their d/s relationships – I’ve read about at least one person who prefers not to have sex with her personal submissives because she wants them to be focused on pleasing her, not on how long until they get off – but they’re by no means the majority. I’m convinced the majority of people are a lot like you: they just want a partner they can share their kink with and whose relationship style is compatible. If you haven’t already joined it I highly recommend the Submissive men and women who love them group on Fetlife, which is full of women who like submissive men and generally want submissive male romantic partners. You just don’t hear as much from women who want a submissive boyfriend as you do from women who want a stable of slaves they can rotate as they get bored because once the women who just wants a boyfriend finds him, she stops advertising.

Or to boil this post down to its simplest form: people lie on the internet, odds are you’re a lot like all the other kinky people, and there’s probably someone out there for you if you can avoid being a dick :)

If anyone out there has suggestions for things you wish you’d known earlier that might make a good blog post, let me know!

What does submission mean to you?

Quite some time ago there was an interesting discussion about whether it’s okay for s-types to blow off commitments. It did eventually start to go sideways, but there were a lot of interesting points made.

The point I want to get at is that different people have very, very different ideas of what submission means and you need to talk that out if you’re going to have a d/s relationship with anyone. I fully agree with KinkInExile’s statement that “It has to be possible to say “no, that’s a limit” & still be submissive for saying no to be emotionally safe.“, and I also agree with Ferns’ when she says “That’s great kids, but *how is that submission?!*

Obviously it’s never okay to coerce someone, full stop. I’m also too fucking lazy to make my (purely hypothetical) submissive do something he doesn’t want to. But if I did have a submissive and we’d made plans together that he canceled on at the last minute (which is the scenario that inspired Ferns’ post), I feel like it would be kind of a dick move not to warn him about how badly that would damage our relationship. Does that count as coercion? Personally I think it depends on the exact form that warning takes (“You know that being able to trust you to do what you say you’ll do is a really big deal for me, right?” vs “Get your ass to the party or we’re through”), but you can make a case either way.

I think it’s more of a problem of mismatched expectations than any given behaviour being “fundamentally unsubmissive.” Everyone has bad days and emergencies and just plain screwups, no one can be the perfect submissive (or the perfect dom) every minute of every day. I enjoy a noodling theoretical discussion of what submission actually is as much as the next person, but if you want a relationship to work I think it’s much more important to figure out exactly what you expect from each other and how you’re going to handle it if your expectations don’t get met. Sometimes that means a serious talk and an apology, and sometimes that means the relationship ends because it’s just not working.

Another thing to think about is that while expecting a dom to tolerate bad behaviour is nowhere in the same ballpark as actually coercing someone, it’s still massively unfair to expect me to hold up my end of the d/s relationship when you’re not holding up yours. Power dynamics are incredibly fragile, all you have to do as a submissive to break it is to say no and keep saying no (yes I link to that post all the time, I’ll stop when it stops being awesome and relevant). I can’t dominate someone I can’t trust. I literally can’t, trying would put me in a headspace like the one Ferns describes in her post:

Should I ask him to get me some water? What if he says ‘no’? He looks pretty comfortable, maybe he won’t want to get up. Ahhh, he’ll say ‘yes’, I’m sure he will. Maybe he won’t… what if he doesn’t. Ahh, hell, I’ll just get it myself, I don’t want to fight about it.

If you don’t want a d/s dynamic anymore or need a temporary break or need things to change that’s totally fine, but don’t pretend your dom can magically keep a dynamic going without you doing your part. You don’t get the hot fearless dom if you’re not willing to be the devoted submissive.

The reason I’d be so unhappy if my submissive suddenly cancelled plans for no particular reason is because of the way I define submission. If I were going to call someone my submissive I’d expect him to do what he says he’ll do. Someone else might have a vastly different definition of a good reason to cancel plans, or they may only expect their submissive to text and cancel instead of standing them up or they might just think “Hey, there are plenty of other people at the party to hang out with if my submissive doesn’t show up.” Personally “I don’t wanna” is a shitty reason that would destroy my trust in him but “I had an unbelievably shitty week and if I have to spend any more time around people I might start screaming and not be able to stop” is disappointing but valid and “my friend just got dumped and needs a shoulder to cry on” would make me happy that I picked the kind of person who would put his friend’s needs above his desire to have fun.

For me, I define submission as putting my wants above your wants and treating my needs as extremely important (but not necessarily more important than yours). That does mean that I expect my submissive to keep commitments when he doesn’t feel like it but doesn’t have a serious need to be elsewhere, because I can’t keep a d/s dynamic going if he doesn’t. It doesn’t mean I get to ignore his limits or that he can’t tell me we’ve run into a limit he didn’t know he had, just that I expect him to keep submitting to me when it’s not convenient.

That’s only my personal definition of submission, though. Yours is no less valid just because it’s different, although it might mean we’re not compatible. Readers, how do you define submission?

 

It’s personal

It’s personal. Domination, that is. I want to someone to submit to me because they like and trust me that much, because I as a person inspire submission in them, not because I’m a woman, dominant, and within 50 feet of them.

That’s why I can’t fucking stand bullshit like female supremacy. If you’re only submitting to me because you believe women are superior, then it really doesn’t matter which woman you’re submitting to. Not to mention that in my experience female supremacists also absolutely fucking despise women, but that’s a separate blog post. Even if you don’t abruptly lose all respect for women when one of us disagrees with you, I have zero interest in people who only “respect” me because I have tits. Just fuck off until you learn to relate to me like I’m a human fucking being.

I’m also infuriated by trash like this idiotic article by Ms Alexandra Stevens about the “one true way” to control a submissive man. Most of my complaints about that crap are already covered in my rant about lying liar Elise Sutton, but it never hurts to have another example of how people are willing to lie to submissive men to part them from their money. Guys, if someone is telling you exactly what you want to hear, down to the level of saying that your favourite kink (chastity/tease & denial/orgasm denial in Ms Alexandra Stevens case) is the one true way you should be dominated, they’re fucking lying to you!

Assholes who scam submissive men aside, saying that orgasm denial is the one true way to dominate a guy is just fucking ridiculous. If I were to blindly follow “Alexandra’s” extraordinarily detailed plan for how long I should keep my submissive locked up (no way that could possibly have been written by a male chastity fetishist, nope, totally sounds like an actual woman whose world doesn’t revolve around some guy’s dick), then I’m not in control, “she” is. And again, it’s totally impersonal. Nothing in that entire article is actually about the woman in charge, it’s about how she can service her submissive’s dick. The almost certainly a guy who wrote this doesn’t seem to care at all which woman locks his dick up as long as someone does it.

If I’m interchangeable then it’s not about me and I don’t want to play. If I have to act out a kink I may not have (newsflash, not everyone is into orgasm denial!), then it’s not even slightly about me. If I’m expected to act out this kink down to some random asshole’s specifications about how long I should deny my partner an orgasm, again, it’s not about me! How can it possibly be about me if I don’t get the chance to do things my way? Even people who are really, really interested in chastity have their own desires, there’s no chastity hive mind. If your dom only wants to deny you for a few hours and then have passionate sex, shouldn’t what she wants be more important than what random asshole from the internet says about how long she should deny you?

Wanting domination to be personal is also why desperation is such a turn off for me. If you want to play so badly that you’re willing to do that with literally anyone, then a) it’s not about me, and b) you’re not looking out for your own wellbeing, which is a gigantic problem all on its own. If you just enjoy playing with a variety of different people and feel confident about your ability to stop or redirect a scene that isn’t working for you, that’s totally cool. What I’m talking about is the seriously unsettling “oh god I need someone, anyone, to dominate me” level of desperation. If anyone will do, then you’re both treating me like I’m interchangeable and deliberately ignoring the fact that me being a dom doesn’t mean we have any interests in common. You can see how that’s gross and dehumanizing, right?

And on a slightly different note, I also like my play to be up close and personal. For the longest time I just wasn’t interested in whips because I didn’t want to be across the room from my play partner when I could be right up in his face hearing all the fantastic little noises he makes.

Speaking of play partners, as much as I want our play to be about me, I also want it to be about them. I’m not going to dominate just anybody, I can’t be bothered. It fucking matters to me who you are, what you’re doing with your life, what you want out of this scene, what you have to give and how much you can take. Even outside of wanting to have some sort of connection with the person I’m playing with, it’s just so much more fun to use a smart, capable human being as a toy. I can’t get that hit of “yeah, you could be building a house or writing beautiful music or giving a speech in front of hundreds of people, but instead you’re here getting slapped around because I wanted to play.” That’s an amazing feeling, and it’s one I can only have with someone I can relate to outside of a scene.

It’s personal. It’s about who I am, who you are, and how we fit together. I want you to bring your whole self to our play and I want you to expect me to bring my whole self. I need you to want more than just any female body. If you can’t connect with your play partner, then why fucking bother?

When are you ready to be a dominant?

As usual, this post is inspired by a discussion I found on Fetlife. The gist of the question, for those who don’t do Fetlife, was whether or not other female doms are actually paragons of efficiency and virtue or whether perhaps the questioner’s former s-type might possibly have had unreasonable expectations, and whether other female doms somehow made themselves perfect before they felt ready to dominate someone.

First off, while there are no shortage of shitty doms out there, if you bash your dom/former dom for not being perfect every second of every day, go fuck yourself. Doms are human beings, just like you. We have faults and bad days and make mistakes just like you. If you need your dom to be perfect you don’t actually want a relationship, you want someone to act out a fantasy for you.

On the late and lamented The Black Leather Belt blog, Lily Lloyd said something very smart about how needing your dom to be perfect is about fear of surrender and wanting submission to be easy and risk free and not wanting to face the fact that your dom is human and will make mistakes sometimes. That, uh, sounded a lot smarter when she originally said it. I think her point about wanting submission to be risk free, even as clumsily as I’ve restated it here, is really important though. I get that it’s scary to make yourself that vulnerable to someone. I certainly couldn’t do it. But you can’t blame other people for your fear of taking that risk, and you can’t make it their job to somehow magically make submission risk free. That’s simply impossible, so suck it up or admit you’d rather stick to fantasizing.

Back at the topic of when you’re ready to dominate someone, you’re never going to feel perfectly ready. As a bunch of commenters in the Fetlife thread already said, there’s always going to be something you could be better at. None of us are ever going to be perfect, and if we wait until we are we’ll never get to have any fun.

That’s not to say that there’s no bar to clear whatsoever, though. While I very strongly believe that people are allowed to identify however they want, once you get involved with another person you have a responsibility to at least try to do right by them. Shit happens to everyone but you have to try. Like in any relationship you need to have something to give (that is, not be in a constant state of crisis where you only barely have enough energy to keep your own life going), half-decent communication skills, and reasonable expectations, and particular to d/s relationships you need to be willing to take responsibility for getting your partner back on an even keel if a scene goes wrong.

Some people will say it’s not fair to blame only the dom when a scene goes wrong and that the s-type is just as much at fault if they failed to communicate (because that’s always effortless and not terrifying when you’re in a bad headspace), but a) that’s blatant douchebaggery and b) I’m not even talking about blame. Taking responsibility for helping your partner is something you do because they need it, not because you screwed up. Honestly, what kind of person would only help their s-type if they were certain it was their fault things went wrong? If your s-type really does have shitty communication skills it’s probably wise to step back from pursuing a d/s relationship with them, but dammit you help people who need it even if there was no way you could have kept things from going wrong.

Note that none of that involves being debt free and having your dream job and an awesome house with a fully stocked playroom and a signed note from a therapist saying you’re officially ready to ride this ride. You’ve just got to be a grownup and willing to try, which, coincidentally, is exactly the same thing I’d expect from an s-type. Like I keep yelling, doms are not that special.

As long as you’ve got a handle on the first two levels of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, you officially have my blessing to look for a d/s relationship. You know, if for some reason you care what some asshole on the internet thinks :) But in general, no one’s going to hunt you down and give you permission to call yourself a dom and find a d/s relationship. You’re never going to get a certificate in the mail saying you’re ready. You’ve just got to give it a shot and try to learn from your mistakes, just like everyone else.

Rain!

It’s been very dry in my part of the world, to the point where it seemed like most of the province was on fire. We’ve finally gotten some serious rain today and it’s awesome! There’s even been some thunder, which we almost never get on the island.

I love the sound of the rain, but we don’t get much of it out here during the summer. If you’re missing the rain too, here are some rain sound generators:

simplyrain is one of the simplest. It automatically starts playing, so you don’t have to do anything to it if you don’t want to, but you can adjust the volume, rain intensity, and the amount of thunder. It allows you to set a sleep timer too.

raining.fm is also really simple, works pretty much the same way as simplyrain.

naturesoundsfor.me lets you create your own customized ambient soundtrack with beach sounds, creeks, different types of rain, birdsong, frogs, and more. It allows you to download your creation  too.

soundrown lets you mix and max a bunch of different soundscapes including rain, coffee shop, birdsong, fire, and more. Very simple controls,

rainycafe gives you only two soundscapes which you can toggle off and on and adjust the volume of independently.

All of these do pretty much the same thing, it’s really just a matter of which rain sound you like better.

And here are some rain themed songs to celebrate finally getting some rain!

Hey I’m a 90s kid, I’ll always have this weird fondness for Guns N’ Roses.

At this point I feel like I should prove I’ve listened to anything produced after 2000.

This one’s a little bit of a stretch for the rain theme, but hey the word rain is in there a couple of times.

Hey readers, what are your favourite rain songs?

Stabbity recommends things

Lately I’ve been playing a ton of Don’t Starve and Don’t Starve Together (the multiplayer version). If you like open world, no hand-holding survival games, check it out. You will die over and over again and you’ll keep wanting to give it just one more try. To quote one of the reviews:

You will die.

Spiders will murder you.
Hounds will murder you.
Bunnymen will murder you.
Trees will murder you.
Tentacles will murder you.
Shadows will murder you.
Giants will murder you.
Penguins will obliterate you.
Bees will f**king destroy you.

And that’s only if you don’t starve first.

On the less frustrating side, the art is adorable. All of the creatures that will try (and usually succeed) to murder you are really cute.

Another game you should try if you like dying repeatedly is Dungeons of Dredmor. It’s basically an old-school roguelike with nice graphics, friendly controls, and a sense of humour. You’ll die a lot, but the little obituaries the game gives you are so good you can’t even really be mad about it. Plus you can worship Inconsequentia, Goddess of Pointless Sidequests and sacrifice lutefisk to the Lutefisk God. Dungeons of Dredmor is also quite a good deal these days because it came out in 2011.

A friend also introduced me to Space Team a little while ago, that game is amazing at parties. It’s a cooperative multiplayer mobile game where you yell incomprehensible technobabble at each other – everyone gets a set of controls on their screen and a console where you get instructions, but the instruction you get might not apply to the controls on your screen. That’s where the yelling comes in :) If you like Space Team, there’s a kickstarter to support the developer to release more games. It can be a bit of a pain to get everyone’s devices connected, but it’s well worth the hassle.

On the book side of things, Richard Morgan’s A Land Fit For Heroes trilogy is a) awesome, and b) complete, for those of you who hate waiting for the next book in a series to come out. A land fit for heroes is a noir fantasy, which totally works for me but may not be everyone’s cup of tea. The characters are interestingly flawed, the world building is fantastic (I find books that let things be mysterious much more interesting than books that insist on spoonfeeding you every little detail), and if you’re going to read it I recommend getting all three books at once because you will want to know what happens next right now.

Definition of “dominant”

A couple of months ago I wrote a post about how maybe we shouldn’t shit on young doms just because they’re young, and in the comments we had quite an interesting discussion about what the definition of dominant actually is.

My personal definition of dominant is “has dominant desires”, the exact wording of which I stole directly from Ranai’s comment. For me the term dominant is just a convenient shorthand that I use to describe who I am (someone who likes being in charge) and what I want (someone who will go along with what I want most of the time). Like Simina said in another comment, “Dominant is not a title.” She also made an excellent point when she said “I want to know, if a dominant person isn’t allowed to call themselves dom without all this magical experience and training and what not, what the hell are they supposed to call themselves to express their identity?”

I can understand people being pissy when some yahoo shows up and calls themselves Master WolfDragon when they actually have no experience, but Master actually is a title, and it’s one that has a lot of meaning for people, particularly in the leather community. Dominant, on the other hand, just means that you like calling the shots. And if you do just like calling the shots what the fuck are you supposed to call yourself if not dominant? We spend an enormous amount of time talking about how important it is to be honest about what you want and what you have to give, and now some asshole is saying I should lie about what I want because I don’t fit their personal definition of dominant? How does that help anyone?

Also, being dominant most certainly does not mean that I slavishly follow some asshole’s personal definition of what is domly and what is not. I don’t give a shit if you think having penetrative sex is undomly, they’re my nerve endings and I’ll stimulate them how I like. I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again “Am I seriously supposed to prove how dominant I am by doing what I’m told?” If you think the only way to be dominant is to follow your personal rules, I think you’ve profoundly misunderstood what being dominant actually means. If you want someone to do what you tell them the person you are looking for is a submissive. As I am neither submissive at all nor your submissive in particular, you can fuck right off if you think you get to tell me what to call myself.

What does it even matter if someone doesn’t meet your personal standards of domliness? The only person whose opinion of someone’s domliness actually matters is that person’s submissive, just like the only person whose opinion on whether I’m a good spouse is my husband. If you’re not part of the relationship, your opinion is irrelevant. Dominance is such a personal thing to me that I can’t imagine why the opinion of someone who’s not involved would matter in the slightest.

One of the reasons I define dominant the way I do is because I personally experience dominance as a facet of my identity. I like being in charge, I like ridiculous action movies, and I like nerding out about code. Nobody gets to tell me whether I actually like being in charge or whether I actually like action movies, and the idea that anyone could is completely ridiculous (well, at least until we have the technology to read people’s minds, but I expect that to take a while :) ) It’s totally reasonable to decide I’m not experienced enough for you or not old enough for you or not mature enough or whatever, but nobody, nobody gets to tell me who I am. You cannot possibly know me better than I know myself and it’s unbelievably rude to think you can.

Thinking of dominance as identity also helps explain why I’m so utterly baffled by people who think there’s some kind of dominant hierarchy. Me being dominant is only about who I am, it really has no bearing on whether you over there are dominant, submissive, or a rutabaga. It doesn’t matter how skilled or experienced you are compared to me, you bloody well get to define yourself however you want.

We do need at least a broad definition of dominant and submissive so we can have a conversation about those topics, but I think “has dominant desires” and “has submissive desires” is plenty, and as a bonus defining it that way allows us not to be total fucking dickweasels about other people’s identities.

If you want to call yourself dominant, go to town! If that’s the best description of who you are and what you want, then you’re morally in the right using it and the dicks who say otherwise can fuck off until they come up with a good reason dominant people shouldn’t call themselves dominant and an alternative word that clearly describes who people with dominant desires are and what they want. I’ll just hold my breath until that happens 😉

Women and desire

Or, if you’re not ready reading Emily Nagosaki’s awesome blog The Dirty Normal, you should go fix that :) In particular, she has a really interesting post about Flibanserin and the way the FDA was pressured to approve it even though “the drug increases “sexually satisfying events” by one per month over placebo, and roughly 13% of women who take it experience side effects like somnolence, dizziness, and nausea.” Ooooh, sexy sexy nausea.

But more seriously, it’s really sad that even the American Sexual Health Association and the American Reproductive Health Professionals, both of whom really ought to know what they’re talking about, thought that the best option to help women who were desperately unhappy about their “lack” (it’s not necessarily a lack, but I’ll get to that) of sexual desire was a drug that only works a little bit better than a placebo and has some shitty side effects.

The reason it’s so sad is that what we call a lack of sexual desire, particularly in women (I don’t know of any research specifically about trans women, but I bet this applies to you too), is often just responsive desire. To paraphrase it quickly (although the link is really interesting and goes into much more detail), there’s this assumption we have, at least in western culture, that the normal way to be is first you feel sexual desire, then you go have sex. But for roughly 30-60% of women and 5-20% of men, it’s the other way around – they don’t usually want sex just out of the blue, they start wanting it after foreplay has started. These folks don’t have “low” desire. They don’t suffer from any ailment, they don’t long to initiate but feel like they’re not allowed to. Their bodies just need some more compelling reason than “That’s an attractive person right there,” to want sex.

If all your life you’ve been told that spontaneous desire (sexual desire without an obvious trigger) is the way you’re supposed to feel desire, of course you’d feel broken and wrong and bad if you only experience responsive desire. And the more you feel broken and wrong and bad, the more even considering thinking about having sex becomes a minefield that you’d just as soon avoid entirely and things spiral downward from there.

In case things weren’t complicated enough already, AFAB (assigned female at birth) people don’t always orgasm reliably and aren’t always fulfilled by the sex acts that society says are the only “real” sex (ie penetration). To quote Emily again “only about a quarter to a third of women are [able to orgasm from vaginal penetration]. Another third of women are sometimes orgasmic from penetration, and the remaining third of women are never or almost never orgasmic from penile-vaginal penetration.” I know orgasm is far from the only reason people have sex, but personally if I’m going to go to the trouble of having sex I damn well want an orgasm. I’m also one of the lucky ones who does orgasm reliably, which does colour my views on that.

The one thing I really wanted to talk about is how responsive desire exists, is totally normal, and is only different from, not less than, spontaneous desire. You can stop reading now and that’s totally cool :) But if you’re still here, let’s talk about how responsive desire might affect female doms.

There’s this stereotype that doms are always supposed to be the ones to initiate sex, but it seems unlikely that absolutely all female doms are part of the roughly 40-70% of women who experience spontaneous desire some or all of the time. It can also be complicated for submissive people, particularly submissive men, to initiate sex in a way that doesn’t feel pushy or demanding to the dominant woman.

Fortunately, I think kink itself might be a hack for that problem. Basically, getting aroused enough to want to initiate sex takes a combination of turning on the ons and turning off the offs. You can rev the engine as much as you want, but if you don’t release the brakes you’re not going anywhere. In a happy healthy d/s relationship, the trust that your partner will do what you tell them to do could help turn off the offs and the act of them submitting to you could help turn on the ons. Then again, any healthy relationship, kinky or not, where you feel safe and trusting is going to be good for your sex life in general, so does adding kink fundamentally change anything? I have no idea, but I think it’s an interesting question.

Another thing that might help is for the submissive man to learn to seduce his partner. There’s a fine line between seduction and manipulation, but if you know your partner well and know what turns her on, it’s possible to present yourself in a context that makes the answer to “would you like to come have your way with me?” “why yes, yes I would.” It’s about setting up a situation where she feels relaxed and sexy and playful, not about sugar-coating plain old pushiness.

Also, if we’re talking about kink and differing types of desire, we pretty much have to talk about chastity, if only to yell about how it’s not a silver fucking bullet! Just because you’re not having sex doesn’t mean you’re not still trying to make the world revolve around your dick. If you and your partner enjoy chastity play for its own sake and are really good at communicating your needs, then you absolutely might be able to use chastity as a way to do fun sexy things without pressuring the responsive partner to have sex they’re not necessarily into. But on the other hand if your partner just wants a goddamn break from the pressure to sexually service you, then a chastity device is going to backfire horribly. By the same token, if your dom thinks using a chastity device means they don’t have to give a shit about your sexual needs, they’re probably a bad partner for you and a jerk besides.

Responsive desire exists and is totally normal, but may be even more complicated for dominant women than it is for everyone else given the way our culture says spontaneous desire is the one true way (fuck the one true way).

Dominant women and powerful men

As much as I bitch about stupid bullshit I’ve found on Fetlife, sometimes you find sparks of brilliance there too. This quote from ShaktiSama (the thread it’s from is mostly shitty, but if you want to see some asshole ask whether dominant women are actually dominant then knock yourself out) is so great I built an entire post around it.

A lot of dominant women love powerful men …

The reason is simple: the more power you bring to the power exchange, the better fed we are as the receivers of your power. Yes, sue me–I’m greedy. I want the surrender of a king. The devotion of a prince. The broken weeping of an ogre.

When you put it like that, is it any sort of surprise that dominant women can be attracted to powerful men without wanting to submit to them? Even some dominant men talk about how much of a charge they get out of a strong woman choosing to submit to them, why wouldn’t dominant women feel the same way? Seriously, it feels amazing when someone you think is awesome chooses to submit to you.

It’s also pretty great when people hold up their end of the power exchange. I can’t have a power exchange if you don’t bring any to exchange any more than I can have a potluck if you don’t bring a dish to share.That absolutely does not mean you have to be the kind of jerkwad who keeps going on and on about how “alpha” he is, it just means that you need to have some sense of your own worth. Guys, there’s nothing more attractive than a submissive man who knows he doesn’t have to submit to you but chooses to do so because he thinks you’re great. I want to feel your submission as an act of will, not just have it tossed in my general direction.

I think this is related to Ferns’ concept of organic power in that while I want to feel like the balance of power between us is tilted in my favour, I also need to feel that my submissive does have his own power and can resist if he needs to. I can’t have any fun putting someone on their knees if they just throw themselves there, after all. There needs to be sort of a metaphorical counterweight on the other end of the power exchange for it to work for me.

Personally, I also enjoy the role reversal of someone powerful choosing to submit. You’d expect a powerful man to be in charge which makes it that much more fun for me if we switch things up. I just really love the perversity, for lack of a better word, of taking a strong, intelligent human being who’s good at all kinds of stuff and just ignoring all that and treating them like a toy. I guess I have to respect you to want to go to the trouble of disrespecting you :)

The more power you bring to the exchange, the more satisfying it is for me. There’s nothing submissive about it and if you can’t see that, you’re just too dumb to be looking for dominant women.