|A submissive... craves power exchange.|
The distinction between sub and bottom is important because each wants a different kind of relationship. Getting them muddled can lead to uncomfortable situations, or simply an inability to ask for what you really want.
A submissive, broadly speaking, craves power exchange. They usually have fantasies about specific kinds of BDSM, but will happily give them up as long as they can enjoy their preferred dynamic. They value authenticity and spontaneity, and though they have limits, don't emphasize scripted scenes...
|A bottom... wants specific BDSM action|
The submissive may seem the more authentic of the two, but the bottom is the most in control. The sub is a slave looking for a master. The bottom is an adventurer exploring the dark side. This probably explains why some obvious subs claim to be bottoms. However, there is also a tendency for bottoms to embrace identity politics and loudly proclaim themselves to be a "sub". People like this are so specific in their actual needs that they often get called "do me subs".
The switch makes things more complicated because they cheerfully go between dom and sub and/or top and bottom - people use the term interchangeably! It's perfectly possible for a sub to enjoy switching, but if so they will be "service topping", really just enjoying facilitating the experience of the partner in the submissive stance, who is usually a bottom.
So are you a real sub? I think you are if the majority of the following are true:
- I still feel submissive after I come.
- My submissive fantasies focus on feelings rather than action.
- I feel the urge to submit in non sexual situations, even when they don't turn me on.
- When submitting sexually, I am happy to go with the flow as long as my partner acts with authority.
- I am happy to enjoy a BDSM experience that does not lead to my orgasm.
How submissive you are - that depends how often the above is true.
Don't resign yourself to just getting off on other people's adventures! When we started out, my wife was vanilla. Use my manuals to help you walk the same Femdom path! There's one for him, and one for her.