My earliest fantasies, long before I even knew where the babies come from, involved tied up and inventively, sexually tormented men. From my first sexual experience, I was never a shrinking, shy maiden – taking initiative just came naturally. Yet, for the longest time, I didn’t know how to go about exploring my dominant side.
I was confused by the concept of domination and my place in it for many years, partially because I haven’t had a chance to explore it much – most of my previous partners were not very interested, and had, in addition, been tops themselves (in a vanilla way). Also, I’m not actively alpha in “real life” – I just seem to often end up leading by default… And when I’m not, my favorite thing is to quietly read in a corner of some cafe. My office is in a perpetual state of controlled anarchy. My employees are not just some people I hired. They’re co-workers and friends. Everyone speaks up, comes up with new ideas, and has the right to occasionally goof off. Weird, but it works. Not being an “A” type personality surely disqualified me from being a dom, no?
Add to it that, until about 10 years ago, most of my experience with other “dominant” people came from encounters outside the fetish community, mainly from swingers who knew even less than I did. This gave me a completely wrong idea of what it means to be dominant – almost all the “doms” I met were rude, demanding, and much more into power trips than power exchange. Negotiation was summed up in a complete stranger coming up to me and saying “You’ll obey me now. On your knees and suck it good.” Fat chance, loser!
I wanted to give people pleasure. To make them stronger and more confident, not grind them into dust. *And* to tie them up, make them helpless, tease them until they beg… and hurt them. Just not harm them. I didn’t want to be anything like that!
Yet, a few friends I did have who were deeply involved in the local fetish community were (and still are) some of the most well adjusted, healthy and respect worthy people in my life… I was obviously thinking about it all wrong.
Eventually, I was lucky enough to meet a wonderful, adventurous submissive man who happened to like most of the play I like, and things just naturally fell into place. We started exploring D/s years ago, and slowly progressing to what will most likely become a 24/7 D/s/S/M poly relationship. Going to the play parties and classes at Citadel and other fetish venues is much fun, and lots of additional data too!
I learned that:
-I don’t want “to be a Domme”. I simply enjoy the fact that I’m strong (and headstrong), and prefer to play with people who appreciate it.
-It’s ok to hurt people, as long as they want you to, and you don’t harm them.
-It’s ok to be a dom and care for people, and this is in fact a big part of being dominant – having someone tied, helpless and pleasured for hours is very caring… and so is remembering to call my honey every day, to tell him how much (and if) he’s allowed to play with himself that evening :-). Aftercare following a long and intense BDSM session, with your lover cuddled, exhausted and blissed insensate in your arms, is caring. A massage can be very sadistic too. Hurt ‘em and heal ‘em. Woohoo!
-Empathy is a drug I was always addicted to. While having sex well requires a lot of it, nothing gets me more fully into another person’s being than being a somewhat sadistic dominant. What to demand, when and how much to push both physical and emotional boundaries, the difference between “it hurts” and “it hurts so good” changes not just from person to person, but from one moment to another… It takes a tremendous amount of empathy to do it well. Domination and submission is about heightened intimacy, not the lack of it.
-I learned that it’s perfectly ok to *take*. I’ve been a kind of person who never asks for help… or delegates responsibility. This part of being dominant has actually changed the way I do thing in my professional and “mainstream” life too. Plus, being in the situation where I can simply ask for what I want, and know that 1) the other person gets equal pleasure from serving me and is glad to learn exactly how to do it the best, and 2) they actually *like* my somewhat insatiable appetites instead of being completely intimidated by them is awesome!
-Heartfelt, complete surrender is a most wonderful gift a girl (or a guy) can get. It’s also somewhat overwhelming to have so much responsibility for another person’s wellbeing, and it makes one work hard to be worthy of such gift. Hearing “I obey” from your lover for the first time is very much like hearing the first “I love you”. Both mean “I surrender”.
-There are no lowercase letters in D/s. Being dominant and submissive both require strength, the willingness to deeply trust another person, to patiently serve and be served, go on a limb, learn and stretch.