Give and take

January 26, 2009

One thing I’ve figured out about power-exchange is that it’s truly that: an exchange. I don’t know if power  is what’s involved necessarily, except maybe in a fuzzy, New Age-y sense. Sure, when I’m topping the boy or he’s serving me, whatever, then I appear to be wielding power over him. But it’s not like submission turns him into a robot. I’ve read fantasies** in which submissives describe being made into mindless drones, the utter slaves of a beautiful, harsh dominant.

How is controlling a person without any will of his own at all sexy or interesting?

On the other hand, I’m not one of those Dommes who wishes to subdue a dominant, alpha male-type submissive (an oxymoron if I’ve ever heard one). I thought I did, once, but soon realized that dominant alpha males are generally a pain in the ass. Maybe I’m just lazy or lack ambition, but I don’t find anything thrilling in the idea of constantly battling someone else until there’s only one left standing. Sure, it’s a game, but isn’t bracketing those power dynamics (by making them explicit, ironically) the point of a D/s relationship? Plus, you have more time for the fun stuff.

Setting aside efficiency and time-management issues, I also have an intense dislike of being contradicted, told what to do, or otherwise, y’know dominated. I don’t think I’d be able to handle being in a relationship with someone who was constantly challenging me. I am generally a serene person when I get my way, but get irritated very easily when I don’t. I do not enjoy being angry and anyone who regularly stirs my temper is not someone I want to spend lots of time with.

I’m not an expert on submissive men, having only been with 1.5 (the 0.5 is for a former boyfriend who had submissive aspects to his personality, but was not a submissive). But from my limited experience, (well-adjusted) sub men seem to be everything that women seem to want: considerate, deferential, wonderfully attentive in bed, good listeners. Plus, if your boy is service-oriented, then he’ll be happy to make breakfast and clean up afterward too. How can it get any better than that? Why would any sane woman prefer a guy who’ll whine if you ask him to wash the dishes or veto things you’d like to try, but he’s not (initially, at least)  thrilled about?

Topping is hard enough as it is.

But again, D/s is not one-sided, though it may appear that way. I climax three times and deny him an orgasm. I sit and read the Times while he makes the bed. I tie him up and beat the living daylights out of him. Etc.

But it’s giving as much as taking. Controlling his orgasms means I have to think about his orgasms, his desire, the limits of his patience and frustration, and plan accordingly. Like most women, I’ve been taught to be more other- than self-oriented. I sometimes do feel selfish making him do the chores. Sometimes, I also have to supervise, since he won’t be able do things to my specifications right away. And I can’t give him tasks that are utterly beyond him. Setting him up for failure wouldn’t add anything positive to our time together. Similarly, beating him is not purely about my pleasure, but also provides him with something he craves, and in a way that makes him feel safe and valued and cared-for. Underlying anything I do to the boy is a deep sense of care, concern and affection.

It’s strange that I have these traditionally ‘feminine’ feelings attached to acts that are so not traditionally feminine. Helpless things make me go all protective and warm and fuzzy. I like feeding animals and playing with babies and watering my plants and cuddling with the boy when he’s all floppy and dizzy after a particularly painful scene.

And I like watching the boy bloom as he becomes more secure and confident in this aspect of his life. It is like witnessing a shriveled plant send forth new leaves.

But I’m not into having grown-up children, which is why I really dislike those mindless slave fantasies. I’m a fairly well-adjusted, functioning member of society. I’d like my submissive to be the same. And I’d like our relationship, even if it’s a D/s one, to reflect our equal statuses as individuals who each have needs and who each have something to contribute.

**Yes, I get that they’re fantasies and as such tend to be extreme, but they’re fantasies written by and aimed at submissives. Maybe it’s an obvious point, but I wanted to explain why–for this dominant at least–these scenarios are not appealing.

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One Response to “Give and take”

  1. axe Says:

    “Why would any sane woman prefer a guy who’ll whine if you ask him to wash the dishes or veto things you’d like to try, but he’s not (initially, at least) thrilled about?”

    Sane women (and men) are hard to come by:)

    I’ve read of dominants that actually enjoyed setting a sub up for failure when it comes to service. I’ve never understood this since it’s counter-productive. Some use it as an excuse to punish. Again, I don’t get it since there really doesn’t need be a reason for someone to beat me other than her wanting to beat me. Maybe it would make more sense if I new it was a game to begin with.

    Oh and damn you for getting that queen song stuck in my head.


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