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Friday, 16 December 2016

Help me Kinky Internet! What do crap male subs do wrong?

Probably a bit of Do-Me going on here.
Yes, I've given in. I'm working on a new book provisionally titled, "How to be a male sub without being a loser or an ass." The first step is to nail down the main categories of male sub behaviour that are both self defeating and annoying.

Note, I'm looking at behaviours here, things subs do (or don't do!). What's behind them is mostly either heresies (wrong ideas about BDSM, women or humans in general), or issues (low self-esteem, muddled fantasy life etc). I'll get to these later  - though please do help by sharing your insights in the comments...

Three obvious crap male sub behaviours - please tell me what you think

This sub has over-committed
and is likely to Flip-Flop
So far, I think three general terms capture most male sub crapness:

  • Flip-Flopping, the pattern of enthusiastic commitment that turns out to be over-commitment. This covers everything from "submissive until orgasm" through on/off relationships, to abortive internet courtships.
  • Self-Negging, meaning activities in which subs put themselves down or take a position of generic rather than fetishised inferiority.  Classic examples include approaches along the lines of "I'm an overweight small-penised slob who needs a Goddess to sort me out" through to just feeling like a loser because of your kink.
  • Do-Me-ing, which describes a general focus on what the sub wants, rather than on the dynamic or reciprocity. Making first contact with a list of very specific "needs" falls under this, as does going into a scene or session with overly restrictive limits, or using a safeword as a skip track button, all with the intent of channelling the domme through particular activities. Do-Me can be innocent due to simply not thinking, but can also segue into duplicitous scheming, e.g. deliberately planning to end a session once you've had your kicks and before you reciprocate.

Help me name the fourth category! 

The Magical Secret World of Femdom....
I'm missing one category - a catchall for wrong-headed behaviour in which the sub is overly certain this is how mutually satisfactory Femdom works.

This covers everything from sending unsolicited dick pics and worse, through presuming a dynamic out of the box (e.g. using protocol terms with a new acquaintance in inappropriate circumstances), to weird expectations of a domme (e.g. that she telepathically divine your needs, or automatically regards pegging you as you serving her). 

I am pretty certain it really is a family of behaviour because a sub who, say, sends unsolicited dick pics is quite likely to call a dominant woman "mistress" on first meeting her, and offer to serve her by sniffing her panties or licking her boots.

The behaviour is different from Do-Me-ing because, though the sub may come across as creepy or presumptuous, he's really an innocent abroad - a comedy tourist, somewhere between Twoflower and Borat, or Inspector Clouseau undercover. 

The sub is so very certain he's mastered the phrase book and knows the secret handshake. All he has to do is send you a picture of himself in panties and you will induct him into the Magical Secret World of Femdom....

What should I call this? Or does the behaviour really fit into the other three categories? (Or is it really two categories?)

Learn how to how to walk the same Femdom path with your partner! 

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Thursday, 1 December 2016

Characteristics of a Submissive Thrall

Thralls want to serve, 
as in really serve
(If you've just tuned in, then "thrall" is my term for a submissive who submits for real. You are still a "real" sub or a dom if you don't thrall. I just think it's time we identified this flavor and gave it a signal boost.)

Things like this article from my friend Ava Ex Machina got me thinking:
So oral worship huh? That’s your primary thing?” he asks.
“One of many things. Even vanilla women tend to like oral sex.”
“I don’t, at least not giving anyway. I don’t eat pussy. I’m old enough now that I know I just don’t like it, never have. Don’t do it.”
“I understand if that’s not your thing, but it’s a deal-breaker for me. I’m not really into play that’s only about pleasuring the submissive.” (He had just finished telling me in extensive paragraphs all about his desire to be pegged.)
“A deal breaker? That’s fucking ridiculous.”
And then the... gentleman outed and harassed her by proxy at work. And she reflects:
...entitlement to my body, my sexuality, my space still exists, a function of how men see women: consumables, objects available for their sexual consumption.

We are defined by our submission,
not your dominance

Submissive Thralls wouldn't do this! It's not that we are good people or think we are the "nice ones" -- #notallmalesubs -- it's just that we wouldn't want to. 

When we submit, we want to actually submit. Yes we have our hard limits, but they are of the "Danger Will Robinson" type, not "Me no like can we skip to my blowjob" kind.

So much for what we're not. Here's some of what I think we are.

1. We are defined by our submission, not your dominance. Yes, you may or may not "dominate" us or have a "dominant personality". 

Regardless, we want to submit to your authority as if it were Ancient Rome and you owned us. When you say come here, we come here. Our limits serve as safety barriers, not guide-ways.

2.  We like doing things we don't enjoy. Partly this is masochism. Mostly, it's proof of our subordination. That means that if we don't enjoy giving head, we'll still gain some satisfaction from doing it. Moreover, if we're doing it because you just want an orgasm that way, then we really don't want you to second-guess our experience. The same goes for leaving us kneeling in the corner, or having us spring clean an entire apartment. Or whatever.

We're more interested in your wishes than our fantasies
3. We want to serve, as in really serve. I don't mean serve by licking boots or wearing panties or weathering a beating. I mean serve as in doing things that would make sense to a vanilla observer. 

Yes of course you can play with us if you want, but we also want you to have us give you a foot rub, cook you dinner, clean up, not because it's a fetish but because we are your submissive.

4. We're more interested in your wishes than our fantasies. This is partly participant voyeurism. The pleasures you seek when you have "permission" to be selfish are far more intriguing than anything we might imagine. However, it's primarily about experiencing actual submission rather than fantasies resonating with submission.

5. We like it when you don't focus on us. You can if you want -- if you enjoy torturing and teasing and BDSM for effect. However, you don't have to. You can, in fact, just kick back and enjoy being in charge. What's in it for us? Again, submission and voyeurism.

6. We still want to submit after we've come. If we get to come, we still feel submissive after ward. We'll bring you a nightcap, tuck you up in bed, and -- if that's what you want -- crawl off to our cell, and do all this long after the afterglow has faded. In the morning, we'll bring you breakfast in bed, even though we're too groggy to feel horny, and it's a work day anyway.

In short, when we're your thrall, we're as low maintenance and consistently obedient as if you owned us.

Learn how to how to walk the same Femdom path with your partner! 

CLICK HERE to download my Femdom Erotica (all written while chaste!)
(For ebook format, 
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Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Paradox of Domination and Submission Resolved: Power Exchange and Spheres

The dom may also
sadistically "mistreat"
the sub. And yet
the masochistic sub
consents and "likes" it.
Our kink is riddled with paradoxes!

Doms aren't evil. Subs aren't losers. And yet out erotic focus is on the experience of victimising and victimisation, exploiting and exploitation.

Doms often want to make their subs happy (e.g. because relationship). Subs stick around because they are happy. And yet the tone of our kink is often coercive and extends into the callous.

Doms aren't all powerful. Subs have rights and stand up for them. And yet the dynamics we crave  revolve around an empowered dom and a disempowered sub.

The dom may also sadistically "mistreat" the sub. And yet the masochistic sub consents and "likes" it.

We're left with the conundrum:

How can any of this be real? 
And if it is real, how can it be OK?

This is so confusing to the tidy mind that it generates trite non-useful statements like "the sub has all the power" and simulationist approaches that blunt the underlying dark urges.

The confusion around motivations dissolves when we consider that there's no authentic "I".
people on a roller-coaster scream
in genuine fear... then buy
another ticket.

Rather - as modern science tells us - we are a mess of subsystems working in parallel. That's why people on a roller-coaster scream in genuine fear... then buy another ticket.

The confusion around ethics and authenticity similarly dissolves when we compare our activities to sporting ones. For example, two boxers consent to be in the ring, are governed by rules, and yet authentically fight.

These apparent paradoxes are actually built by comparing things from different spheres!

Fearing and enjoying can coexist as brain chemicals without contradiction. Rules constrain freedom of action but do not prevent it.

Thus, as soon as you are strict about what applies to which sphere - my catchall for headspace, framework, and system - BDSM relationships start making sense.

The outer framework spheres are what give people permission to indulge in D/s:

  • Consent Sphere: Both parties consent to a scope, otherwise the relationship would not be possible.
  • Moral Sphere: BDSM is OK because (if!) both parties consent within sensible limits. The dom is therefore not evil. Nor is the sub a victim.
  • Relationship Sphere: The dom understands that the sub craves BDSM and is therefore making them happy on some existential level. The sub wants to be there, despite the considerable bravery sometimes required, and is therefore not an exploited loser.
The inner experience spheres are what satisfy our orientation and they are dark places.
  • Physical Sphere: The physical activities and sensations are real. Therefore any sadism, victimisation, and exploitation is experienced as physically real, as is any coercion.
  • Power Sphere: The dom commands and the sub obeys (within the scope covered by the consent). It follows that the power exchange is at least as real and authentic as the action in a boxing match.

D/s couples actually experiencing D/s
quickly forget that it's not real. 
Just as boxers lose track of the framework beyond the ring and forget that it's "just a game", D/s couples actually experiencing D/s quickly forget that it's not real.

We become accustomed to the power dynamic to the extent that disobedience starts to become unthinkable, even though the dynamic only exists because of the consensual, moral and relationship framework.

This is no different from the way that people in conventional marriages forget that they don't have to be faithful or work together.

Therefore D/s relationships are at least as functionally real as traditional marriages.

Conversely, I think people in a room considering BDSM shy from the darkness and treat the framework as an end in itself, rather than as a means to support the experience of domination and submission.

Perhaps this explains both "do me" subs who spend more time on the internet than on their knees, and also what I think of as "consent and aftercare fetishists" who seem to take two important concepts too far and put them in centre stage.

Learn how to how to walk the same Femdom path with your partner! 

CLICK HERE to download my Femdom Erotica (all written while chaste!)
(For ebook format, 
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Monday, 28 November 2016

Towards a Submissive Thrall Manifesto

The action will be for the
dominant's benefit.
My name is Giles English and I'm a "submissive thrall".

OK. I made up that last term... or almost. Merriam Webster defines a thrall as:

a : a servant slave : bondman; also : serfb : a person in moral or mental servitude
a : a state of servitude or submission <in thrall to his emotions>b : a state of complete absorption <mountains could hold me in thrall with a subtle attraction of their own — Elyne Mitchell>
So, essentially thrall is another - more poetic - word for "slave" but with romantic overtones - e.g. "I am enthralled by my mistress" - and no specific BDSM expectations.

I propose...
a submissive thrall 
is a sexual submissive who, 
when they (consensually) submit, 
actually submits to their 
dominant for real.

A thrall, when submitting, can be anything from an affectionate subordinate lover through to a mute protocol-bound slave. The scope of a thrall's submission can range from occasional bedroom only, all the way to 24/7/365.

None of that matters.

What defines a thrall is that, when we submit, the power exchange is effectively real within permissive limits. Specifically:
  • A thrall's hard limits (a) are permissive enough to grant satisfactory freedom of action to the dominant, and (b) identify only those lines which would be dangerous to cross.
  • A thrall offers their kinks and fantasies to the dominant as optional tools to be exploited for the dominant's pleasure by way of reward and incentive. (Or as an a la carte menu for inexperienced dominants.)
  • A thrall's safeword is for mental and physical safety, only. There will be no attempt to direct the action.
It follows that a thrall accepts:
  • They may sometimes be bored, frustrated or uncomfortable.
  • The action will be primarily for the dominant's benefit, even when they give pleasure.
  • Any issues will be handled within the context of the power exchange.
  • Punishment will be real punishment.
  • Nobody will step out of role, because nobody is in role.
Nobody will step out of role,
because nobody is in role.
We need a specific term for this because "submissive" is now used very loosely to cover anybody who submits erotically in anyway to anybody doing anything.

Somebody who submits within a very tight scope - highly scripted scenes or ones with lots of affirmative consent - can identify as a submissive, as can somebody who hires pro-dominants in order to  explore their fantasies.

All these people are "real" submissives. (And their dominants are "real" dominants.)

However, this means we don't have a word for a submissive who craves a D/s relationship in which the power exchange feels real, even if it is limited in scope and time. ("Slave" won't do because it can mean a specific level of lifestyle submission and/or particular protocol and has some unfortunate associations for some cultures.)

All this makes it hard for "thralls" to identify themselves to themselves and to potential partners, and doubly hard for dominants to make clear what they are looking for.

Hence my term, submissive thrall.

And no, I have no idea what the dominant counterpart would be called.

Learn how to how to walk the same Femdom path with your partner! 

CLICK HERE to download my Femdom Erotica (all written while chaste!)
(For ebook format, 
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Friday, 18 November 2016

Kinky Dating in the Vanilla World: How to find a Femdom relationship on OK Cupid

I'm not dating - thank God! However, there are an awful lot of male subs looking for partners, so when Fetlife user alwaysthere posted about dating in the vanilla world (source), I interviewed him and got his permission to share on my blog:
HIM: I suggest a two pronged approach:

1. Join your local BDSM community. Go to munches and make friends. Go to workshops and learn everything you can about how to do BDSM safely. Volunteer to help at parties, and be a good member of the community. There is a good chance you will find someone to play with which will give you valuable experience for when you do meet the right person. And you just might find someone who is also looking for more than just play.

2. Use online dating sites to meet new people in the vanilla world. I've had the best success with OKCupid. Let your profile hint that you are possibly kinky, but don't come right out and say it on the site, or you may scare off potential mates before you even meet.
You want to have as many first dates as possible. I actually made two different profiles on OKC that highlighted different aspects of who I am but were both 100% factual. If I found a person that I thought was a good match I'd email from one account and if I didn't get a reply in a week I'd email from the other one. It doubled my chances of meeting people.
On each first date, if conversation is going well and you think there might be potential, just come right out and say that you are into BDSM as a bottom or submissive. Be prepared to explain more about what this means.
If she's interested in you and receptive to the idea than you just got yourself a second date and sex is nearly a sure thing. If she reacts poorly to the idea of BDSM than you haven't lost anything more than an evening and the cost of a dinner.
She barely knows you at this point so there's no chance of her outing you to your friends that she hasn't even met yet. If someone you meet isn't interested in BDSM than you don't want to waste any time dating her any way. Move on to the next as quickly as possible.
I did exactly this strategy a number of years ago, and now I'm married to an awesome FemDom. We met on OKC and my coming out to her as kinky intrigued her. After a few dates, some great sex and a little bit of really basic BDSM I took her to her first ever Munch. Soon we were both regulars at workshops and parties and she became an accomplished rope rigger.
ME: Actually, would you mind sharing some specifics about how you hinted at kink in your profiles? I'd love to quote you on my blog, and perhaps in a book I'm planning.
HIM: OKCupid was the easiest to set up, because it has badges you can earn for answering questions, and one of them is "More Kinky". Lots of people have this badge who aren't outright into BDSM but it certainly indicates a predisposition to being open to BDSM. In general, take the time to answer enough questions to rack up at least a half dozen badges. It helps with matching.
There are also many creative ways you can phrase things in your profile that hint to your kinkiness but don't outright give it way. Let them read between the lines when you mention that you believe in non-traditional gender roles, or maybe you talk about how you are always looking to try new things.
Honestly, since dating profiles are more or less anonymous, you can put more obvious stuff on there. You just might have success with a profile that comes right out and says you like kinky sex. You don't have to get into all the details about what turns you on, but bring honest on your profile is more likely to get positive attention than one with the same old generic answers. Re-write your profile once every month or two and keep track of how many responses you get with each revision.
When you find a match you want to meet, write them a note that specifically mentions several things you like about their profile. When sending a message to a new match I usually would write one paragraph about how we are similar, paste a second paragraph that was the same for every match, and then close the message with one last reference to their profile and asks for a date. At one point I was doing one or two first dates almost every week.
ME: Did kink come up in your first dates?
HIM: I would bring up the subject any time it felt that we were doing well on the first date, which was probably 60 to 70 percent. After a short time I got practiced at it which made it easier. At least 75 percent of the time when I bright up the subject I got a positive response. This who responded positively were 90% likely to have a second date and I had sex with about half, maybe more.
ME: Did you ever get false matches? E.g. kinky but wrong preference?
HIM: I did once and we ended up playing just for fun. She was a submissive and we alternated tying each other up. We never had sex during the play, nor did we start a relationship. We are still friends and run into each other at munches once or twice a year.
ME: Did you get targeted by pros fishing for clients?
HIM: Only through fetlife, not through vanilla dating sites. The messages seemed off for some reason, so my guard was up but I kept replying until she asked for a gift as a tribute. So I challenged her to meet me in person and I would bring a gift. Never heard back again.

Learn how to how to walk the same Femdom path with your partner! 

CLICK HERE to download my Femdom Erotica (all written while chaste!)
(For ebook format, 
Lulu or iTunes.)

Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Why male subs are crap 2: Warped or missing role models and prototypes

Listen to the chatter around Femdom: "Goddess... Mistress... Queen... punishment... service... worship..."

Look at the posturing and the posture taking!

Roman widows kept male slaves as
lovers....never depicted in
mainstream culture. 
It all points to a prototype:  a mutually fulfilling sexual relationship in which the woman holds all the formal power, not just over the sex but over the man himself.

Unfortunately, it's a protoype that never existed.

Oh sure, some Roman widows kept male slaves as lovers. Some of those relationships had to be about more than just captive masseur who does happy endings. However, these are never depicted in mainstream culture.

Instead, our cultural heritage views female dominance through the lens of the Battle of the Sexes: there to be defeated - Cruella De Ville; tamed - Kate from Taming of the Shrew; - or laughed at - every comedy housewife who wears the trousers.
The powerful woman spends the movie trying to
submit her way into his world.

Think about the film Notting Hill.

Hugh Grant's character is a penniless bookseller. He's in love with Julia Roberts' screen goddess. The whole film hinges on overcoming the power imbalance between them, and ultimately on her escalating attempts to surrender to him.

The powerful woman spends the movie trying to submit her way into his world.
Imagine if the genders had been reversed?

So, yes you can have a living goddess like She or Cleopatra or Julia Roberts, but - since sex is surrender - when the right man comes along, she's revealed as "just a girl wanting to be loved" (presumably this is the origin of the idea that dommes are just waiting for a real alpha male to come along and tame them).

 She's grotesque, and he's a figure of fun. 
Think about... how about... yes! Do you remember Suburbagatory?

Sheila Shay is clearly - explicitly! - the dominant partner in her relationship, but she's grotesque, and he's a figure of fun. Moreover, he's weak in his relationships outside the marriage, and therefore less of a man.

That's fine because this is comedy, but can you think of a non-comedy show where she rules the roost and that doesn't constantly generate challenges for them as a couple?

So, yes, the wife can be in charge, but that makes the man defeated and emasculated.

It seems our mainstream culture doesn't know what a happy vanilla Femdom - "Female Led"- relationship looks like, let alone what kinky Femdom sexuality might look like when she's actually in charge.

This is perhaps why some male subs have odd or unhelpful ideas.

They envisage Femdom as a simple reversal of traditional roles.

In the crudest form, they present themselves as feminised in the expectation that a dong-wielding domme can't wait to peg them "for her pleasure". In a more subtle variation, they assume that if a woman is in charge then her approach to sex will become "masculine": just as a manly man wants to "force" one extra orgasm out of his woman, so should a True Femdom want to milk her sub dry. (Of course, some women do want to do this, but not all.)

Castle: very much a happy vanilla Femdom relationship
Or they narrate their submission as an inevitable act of surrender in the battle of the sexes, and portray themselves as weak while loudly proclaiming the truth of gynosupremacy - because that's attractive, right?

Finally, they read female sexuality as being inevitably submissive, so focus on anything other than satisfying it.

This is one reason why they imagine being done to rather than doing for.

In this view, receiving a hand job is a form of surrender. Where the sub is the active one, it must be about his submission. She must either be the scornful goddess - e.g. having her boots licked - or else take pleasure in an aggressive posture, classically through pegging and face sitting, but also - if she really must lie back and enjoy cunnilingus - through gloating over his inevitable denial.

God forbid they should actually have sex!

These warped substitutes for role models and prototypes must affect not only male subs, but also dominant women as they grow up, thus making what should be a very simple idea - she's in charge, we do kink - into a minefield of conflicting expectations.

Hopefully things are changing. Market forces are slowly generating shows about powerful women, some of whom have supportive partners who are neither weaklings not brats.

...hints that there is actual Femdom in the bedroom
from time to time.
The best example of all is Castle

Beckett clearly calls the shots, owns the sex, and the entire series is about his struggle to fit into her life, and ultimate acceptance that she will mostly go her own way and that he can only support her in that.

This is very much a happy vanilla Femdom relationship, though we have hints that there is actual Femdom in the bedroom from time to time.

It's a start.

Learn how to how to walk the Femdom path with your partner! 

CLICK HERE to download my Femdom Erotica (all written while chaste!)
(For ebook format, 
Lulu or iTunes.)

Tuesday, 8 November 2016

Why Male Subs Are Crap 1: Transactional Analysis and Femdom Styles

"...all I want is a full body massage
and dinner I don't have to cook..."
Submissive men are mostly crap and getting worse.

A domme friend of mine posted:
Guy asks to worship my boots, but all I want is a full body massage and dinner I don't have to cook/pay for.
And increasingly (it seems) dommes are complaining of being treated as "kink ATMs" or cheaper alternatives to a pro domme. This can manifest in one-handed email and IM exchanges and then no further contact, through to actual in-person encounters where the "sub" is mostly manipulating to get his particular kinks (perhaps using safe words as a sort of skip track button).

Finally, male subs seem to feel the need to position themselves as losers, as if diminishing themselves will make them more rather than less attractive.

As a first step to understanding what's going wrong. it's worth revisiting the transactional analysis ego state model.

Short explanation:
We all have three mental places we stand - Ego States. How we behave is determined mostly by behaviour we've learned from other people. So when I'm in my "Parent" ego state, I'm usually nurturing, but at other times disapproving or judgemental. When I'm in my "Child" I can be playful but also needy and brattish. When I'm in "Adult" I'm - supposedly - above all this, though I may carry around funny ideas of what an adult does (look for "contaminated adult").

Interactions between people are actually transactions between their ego states. For example, an Adult-Adult transaction can be super sensible and productive, a Child-Child interaction can be playful, and an Parent-Child interaction can be patronising or nurturing depending on the people and situation. And of course, people can shift between states, sometimes in weird ways, which gives us Games People Play.
It strikes me that most BDSM activities belong to a single transaction. This doesn't tell the whole story. For example, Adult-Adult covers both two kinksters trading kinky pleasures and the core of a coldly instrumental owner-slave relationship. Even so, it gives a sense of where people are at when they do stuff and why, for example, Xena likes me to be stoical when she beats me.

When I look at this, I can see three ways that wannabe male subs screw up both when approaching self-identified dommes (and when trying to bring onboard a vanilla partner, but that's a different topic).

It's not entirely their fault, though a little critical thinking might help.

The trouble stems from the way two kinds of kinky transactions that get more prominence than they should:

#1 BDSM Culture encourages Adult-Adult conversations about kinky activities

Adult-Adult conversations about kinky activities
This is a good thing and fits in with the wider emerging consent culture.

The snag is that online BDSM culture puts so much emphasis on these conversations and how to have them (because they can be difficult and require both assertiveness and shared terminology) that to an outsider, it appears that all BDSM is about the activities, and that all  kinksters like to be approached this way.

This is where, "Hello I like face sitting and golden showers and want to be your submissive plz" comes from.

Some kinksters do like to be approached this way, especially if you're part of the same community of trust (anonymous subs often seem to miss that part!).

However, most dominants are interested in a particular dynamic (because power exchange) and have their own kinks that reflect that. Also - tragically - most male subs are in reality also more interested in dynamic than particular fantasies, if only they'd stop and reflect. The Adult-Adult conversations are just there to permit the power exchange to go ahead.

Thus, opening with particular requests without context is like trying to pick up vanilla women by boasting about your oral skills: it's at once not enough information and too much information. It's also cold and unengaging.

There's also the problem that unreflective men presuming a reciprocity of fantasies: that what gets them hard and sweaty will get a domme hot and wet. (The reality, of course, is that much D/s is asymmetric at any given moment, which can be hot.)  That's one of the reasons why some men think stating a list of their own kinks is enough, that announcing you like being feminised is the equivalent of sending up a flare.

This partially explains the "domme as kink ATM" attitude. However, there's another factor...

#2 The high visibility of Pro Dommes emphasises Parent-Child transactions (meet the Kink Fairy)

 (Let's be very clear, I'm talking the ego states of consenting adults here. Also, what follows is not a criticism of pro dommes! They are often community leaders, they push the boundaries in terms of skills and toys, and - most importantly - stop some men going crazy. They also have a right to sell erotic services to consenting adults without having to justify it by being useful.)

Combined facilitator and personal trainer,
therapist and local guide. 
The top prodomme is a Kink Fairy: combined facilitator and personal trainer, therapist and local guide.

The Kink Fairy helps the sub embrace and fulfil his kinks, expand his limits, and possibly expand his horizons. For example, she may make his complex feminisation fantasy come true, "torture" him in highly technical ways using expensive equipment, and then parade him around at a BDSM club.

The sub in question may be middle aged, feel unattractive, and insecure about his sexuality... the pro domme is a kind of rescuer. A good thing.

The Kink Fairy dynamic is, of course, focused on Parent-Child (and not unique to pro dommes).

The snag is that the high visibility of articulate and mesmerising pro dommes makes the mainstream media treat the Kink Fairy as the default for Femdom, and confirms this view when male subs look online.

To add to the confusion, to an outsider, the lines between pro dommes and non-pro dommes can seem blurred. Pro dommes often teach activity focused classes attended by other dommes. They also often have non-paying relationships. Nobody makes a big thing about who is or isn't a sex worker (nor should they!) . And many of the most visible non-pro dommes are also Kink Fairies.

So it's easy for wannabe male sub, who possibly already feels insecure about his kinks, to assume that all dommes are happy Kink Fairies, with non-pros being cheaper but less well-equipped alternatives to pros who can, however, be approached in the same manner.

This is where the weird supplicatory self-infantalising fantasising approach comes from: "I'm weak and dirty and need somebody to control my masturbation and sit on my face..."

The sub assumes that the Child Ego state is the right one for the initial approach. They are playful - don't differentiate between their fantasies and their real self - and at the same time needy, demanding a bit entitled, and above all else, too immediately intimate.

Presumably a pro-domme plays along with this she is there to provide a service and knows how to move the client to where he needs to be. Just about everybody else, however, goes "Ewwww.... BLOCK."

#3 Focusing on a Single Transaction whether Adult-Adult or Parent-Child

Even a kinky relationship is more than
just its kink...
Finally, even a kinky relationship is more than just its kink, and the kinky dynamic needs to cover more than one type of transaction. This is especially true when kink and vanilla are interwoven.

Xena and I - who do this 24/7  - go through the whole range of kinky transactions kink:

Sometimes I'm the long-suffering slave to her brattish mistress (Parent-Child), sometimes she's guiding and disciplining me (Child-Parent), sometimes we have serious conversations with serious consequences (Adult-Adult), and sometimes she toys with me in delicious ways (Child-Child).

So any approach that obsessively fixates on a single transaction - "let's trade kinks" or "rescue me, Kink Fairy!" - feels neither like it comes from a real person nor that he is treating the domme as one. It certainly doesn't suggest that any kind of relationship is possible.

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Monday, 31 October 2016

Ask Giles: Why are dommes often so hostile or dismissive of male subs?

A good proportion of male subs
aren't really psychologically
submissive even though
they might honestly identify
that way.
It's partly supply and demand.

Though the ratio of subs to dommes is something like 5:4, if you remove those who have paired (or poly'ed) off, you get more like 2:1.

This means that dommes can feel overwhelmed and also that if they chose there is no down side to being dismissive. Surrounded by needy men yelping "Pick me! Pick me!" it must be very tempting just to deliver irritated slap downs.

However, there's another thing going on as well.

A good proportion of male subs aren't really psychologically submissive even though they might honestly identify that way. (Sorry.)

These men are either "bottoms" looking for very specific kicks wrapped up in a fantasy, or masochists who therefore have an ambivalent relationship to their urge to submit (if they didn't it wouldn't ping their masochistic urges). The situation is similar to "enjoying gay sex doesn't make you gay".

To make matters worse, the high visibility of articulate and highly skilled prodommes sets all sorts of odd expectations for those men who haven't thought it through. It's the equivalent of agreeing to cook a meal with a friend but actually expecting a restaurant experience.

There's a feminist angle to this as well. Just as the 1970s sexual revolution "freed" women to behave like unpaid sex workers, the 21st century BDSM boom seems to be "freeing" dominant women to behave unpaid prodommes. (rant here)

So, dommes end up experiencing a lot of flip-flopping confusing and flaky behaviour, some of it dishonest.

Which is why many of them have come to distrust male subs.

UPDATE Over on Reddit where I posted the first draft of this, adomme who posts as "adventureismycousin" said:
You know you're there for a Domme's pleasure. But out of a call for submissive men that I sent out earlier this year, and the 35 or so men who responded, only 0 of them were really submissive.
Zero. None. Not a one.
I spent time and energy vetting these guys, apologizing for tardiness to more than half (monogamous as a Domme because I get that invested in my boy), only to find out that I was just a fetish dispenser.
 Go look at the original thread: It's illuminating.

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Saturday, 29 October 2016

Problems with the Submissive Personality type

I have a theory. I can't prove it, but I swear someday somebody will.

I've noticed, that in most
relationships, one partner
leads and one follows
I've noticed, that in most relationships, one partner leads and one follows. The followers - it's as often the male as it is the female - seem to share some broad similarities; though they are not doormats and are often leaders in the outside world, they are facilitators and champions with a tendency to orbit other people or causes. Where I know their kink preference, they are invariably submissives or service tops.

I'm pretty sure that this represents a Submissive Personality Type (link). Not all people of this type are sexual submissives, but I think a core category of what we think of as sexual submissives fit this type.

The first problem with this is that people get cross if you suggest it!

"the kinkster doth protest too much"
Really! They will jump all over your head, and not in a kinky way.

Most of the jumpers will be subs because the last thing that they want to be told is that their desire to - to take an extreme example - be peed on and called a slut or have their sexual organs insulted - has any relevance to their day-to-day life.

I share that defensiveness. Just because I will do my wife's bidding doesn't mean I'll do yours... or does it?

To me, this outright denial of any link is "the kinkster doth protest too much".

Ask somebody about any other hobby or passion and they'll cheerfully tell you how it scratches a more general itch. Nobody who likes model railways, for example, is going to say, "Oh I just like model trains. How dare you suggest I might be detail orientated or like making things with my hands."

So just because suggesting a link causes a problem, doesn't mean that the link doesn't exist!

The second problem is that there are two flavours of kinkster who seem to invalidate the type.

service tops who are really
dominating in a submissive way
There sexual submissives who are actually what used to be called bottoms or even masochists. Let's call them masochistic submissives (and bear in mind the masochism may be non-physical).

For masochistic submissives, submission is a route to BDSM thrills, or is itself a masochistic thrill. Over time, through repetition, they develop a fetish for submitting in its own right. They may also find it's a psychologically comfortable place to go to escape the stresses of work and daily life. Even so, it's not who they are, otherwise it wouldn't give them such a kick.

I'd expect masochistic submissives to be adventurous and tend towards the physical. However I wouldn't expect them to have a submissive personality even though they might identify as a submissive.

There are what's known as service tops who are really dominating in a submissive way. Yes, they do BDSM from a dominant posture, but they focus on playing their submissive partner like a musical instrument.

I would expect service tops to have a submissive personality type even though they identified as a dominant.

So the bottom can say, "I'm a submissive and I don't fit your type" and the service top can say, "I'm a dominant and I don't fit your type." Both can choose to feel insulted.

However, if you set these two flavours aside and focus just on what I'll diplomatically call, deep submissives - people who feel very comfortable submitting and enjoy BDSM primarily as an expression of dynamic, then you do seem to have a cluster of very similar people.

The third problem is that there are other non-kink parameters, e.g. introvert/extrovert,
 "knight" might do if only it were
not such a gendered concept
bold/timid, passionate/subdued... people have personalities!

For this reason, you can't easily sum up the submissive type with a single archetype, though "knight" might do if only it were not such a gendered concept.

Because of this, non-sexual submissive behaviour isn't always obviously submissive. You find deep submissives in top leadership roles as well as in more lowly supporting roles. In relationships, deep submissives can be doormats, or a tower of strength.

Even so, I think deep submissives exist on a spectrum of...

Champion - Facilitator - Pleaser.

The fourth and final problem is that deep submissives often fight and deny their nature, flipflopping between being too selfless and too defensive.

This muddies the waters with respect to their underlying type. It also confuses everybody, and is the reason why it would be helpful for them to be more aware of their personality type so they can embrace and manage it...

...or so goes my theory.

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Thursday, 27 October 2016

Does being a submissive make you vulnerable to abuse?

My first girlfriend used to punch me.

We were young - I won't say how young because google - and this wasn't youthful BDSM experimentation. She would fly into rages and punch me because she was angry and it hurt and I would cry.

The worst of it was it would feel right. I think it even turned me on.

Because back then I had the idea that I was different and that perhaps this kind of fucked up situation was my destiny.

Let's not blame her. She had her own issues with anger and sex. She was definitely a victim of at least emotional abuse and I doubt I helped. However, the result was that our relationship was abusive.

She was also wilfully unattractive, the more so as our relationship progressed. Her personal hygiene sucked. Her underwear... ugh. There was even an element of violation in our sexual fumblings.

So, this was as low as I have ever been, and I don't mean in a dark and kinky way. Thank God we never discovered kink together. She would have used against me.

I didn't learn either.

After that, I routinely sought out fucked up domineering rather than dominant partners.

I can also think of several real life friends - male and female - I know to be submissive, Most have similar "romantic" histories of putting themselves in the position of being treated like dirt... up until the point where they embraced their kink and worked out how to enjoy it.

The problem is that though consensual BDSM is very different from abuse, it still satisfies dark urges. Many BDSM dynamics are really nerfed, sexed up and firewalled versions of abusive vanilla relationships.

It follows that if you have a submissive orientation, it's very easy to "accidentally" drift into relationships with an abusive potential, because those are the ones that feel right - the spark is there.

If we introduce kink to the relationship, this can even make things worse because it will erode our negotiating position and, in the hands of somebody ruthless, make us feel even more insecure.

So yes, we submissives are particularly vulnerable to abuse because we have a tendency to put ourselves in harm's way.

(NB This does not justify the treatment: an unlocked door is not an invitation to burglary. Also, the moral equation changes as we get older. An adult submissive who continually seeks out and feeds dysfunctional relationships is an enabler...)

However, if we know we are submissive, if we embrace it, then we can manage it.

We can date dominant, broad minded people, bring up kink early and with pride, or get involved with the BDSM scene.

We don't need to be vulnerable. There has never ever been a better time to be a sexual submissive.

Monday, 17 October 2016

So submissive you give up your submission? Why meta submission is horseshit

Does the fantasy
of submitting to a
life of only
vanilla sex get you
hard and/or drippy?
Call it "meta submission".

It's a glib little meme, but all the more toxic for it. Subrugbylad articulates it beautifully:
...they said, “it could be the ultimate submission, giving up your kinky side to please your partner”.
The kink world variant is:
If they are truly submissive, then they will obey when you order them to dominate you.
There's a hole in this logic - a category mistake, I think.

However the real problem is that it comes from too much clever reasoning and not enough reality, so let's start with the reality instead:

Would you actually masturbate 
over submissive fantasies of submissively 
giving up your submission? 

Do you jerk (or jill) off over 
binning your chastity device, burning your 
whips, recycling your chains? 

Does the fantasy of submitting 
to a life of only vanilla sex get 
you hard and/or drippy?


Then, no matter how clever the spin, meta submission isn't going to make you feel very fulfilled as a person, so probably don't want to do it.

If that's not convinced you that meta submission his horseshit, then read on...

Thursday, 13 October 2016

23 days locked in a custom Custom Chastity "Ghost"

Day 23 of 24/7 locked chastity!
Day 23 of 24/7 locked chastity!

That's 23 days with no apparent problems... though I've yet to be allowed to unlock and inspect. (If you want to see what it looks installed on, click here.)

And yes, I really mean 24/7. No breaks for showering or exercise. I've been wearing it so long that that it's hard to remember being without it.

And the Custom Chastity "Ghost" still feels like a miracle.

When I - we - first got into chastity, a couple of days in a Chinese device was an achievement. I remember, more bloody minded than erotic, coaxing the package - steel and flesh - through a whole week with the help of anti-chafing cream and spray on skin, God help me.

The Holy Trainer 2 was a heck of an improvement. However, being a closed tube design it wasn't really any good for more than 48 hours. Sure there were ways of showering and drying, but usually when I unlocked there was bad chafing or a suspicious rash.

The Ghost, in contrast, is so practical that I once wore it for a week straight without really realising.

I've already talked about the upsides: It's surgical nylon, weighs nothing much, is almost indestructible,  fine for showering and drying in, and invisible under clothes. It stays put - I can do naked star jumps in mine, and the lack of a rear projection means it doesn't lever itself off when I change from, say, kneeling to standing. I've worn it comfortably and invisibly for sport and socialising, even to the pub.

The downsides are mostly just things you have to bear in mind.

For a start, you have to keep an eye on your skin health - this is probably true of all devices. You have to keep your caged parts clean and dry, shower nightly, use a hairdryer to dry, and above all avoid the build up of sweat and dead skin. (Though don't use lots of lotion either.)

"Careful what you wish for!"
If you do chafe, you can treat it with Sudocrem, and the problem generally goes away - unless you've cocked up on the measurement, that is.

Because, the material and the design are very unforgiving.

If you get the wrong gap, you will chafe.

If you get the wrong length, it will be hard to pee without making a mess, and the result will irritate your skin.

And if you get the fit wrong, then the extra movement will make the gripping eggshell texture feel more like sandpaper. (Some people hate the texture too, so if you are uber sensitive this may not be for you).

That means you have to measure carefully before buying one of their off-the-shelf devices. It's also an argument for going for true custom, like the one I cheekily secured as a review copy.

The snag with the custom devices is that they are underpriced and there's only one Lady Fox!

She's just not Amazon! (Though
you can imagine her 
as an Amazon if you want...)
As I understand it, she contracts out the manufacturer to a specialist in medical appliances, but does all the design and admin herself and the whole business presumably grinds to a halt if she catches flu, or gets caught by a life event. No surprise then that there are complaints on the various forums about slow or poor communication.

She's just not Amazon! (Though you can imagine her as an Amazon if you want...)

Personally, I don't think she's worse than any of the other small manufacturers. Holy Trainer, for example, take a while to answer emails, and even longer to sort out issues.

My prediction is that she'll bump up the prices until the workload is manageable.

So if you are considering ordering a Custom Chastity device, you'll need to balance budget against your desire for responsive customer service. If you wait until everybody's singing her praises, you may not be able to afford one of her devices.

In the meantime, I'm very happy with mine. We've become almost inseparable. Xena - my wife, not the TV Amazon - is also happy. She just likes having me locked. However, that's another blog entry.

Careful what you wish for...

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Monday, 3 October 2016

Is Domination and Submission like sugar (but better for you)?

The urges to dominate and to submit -
those have to be natural. They're part
of our inner monkey. 
Humans are born addicted to sugar:
Many scientists suggest that we are primed to desire sugar at an instinctive level as it plays such a vital role in our survival.... The problem now is that refined sugar is too readily available (BBC)
So the urge to eat sugar is natural, but its ready availability is not. The end result, some people just can't stop eating sweet things because, thanks to modern civilisation, the sweet things don't just run out.

Now think about D/s.

The urges to dominate and to submit - those have to be natural. They're part of our inner monkey. 

Our brain pumps out happy chemicals to reward us for being dominant, but also for being submissive - we can't reproduce if we're killed in a pointless fight, or if our band of proto-humans is so busy with in-fighting that a sabre tooth tiger eats everybody! 

Somehow domination and submission are also sexy. Perhaps they once equipped our ancestors to breed with both high and low status partners? 

Whatever the cause, domination, submission, and eroticism are hopelessly tangled, so much so that vanilla power dynamics have featured in romantic fiction as far back as the old King Arthur stories, and still feature in human courtship and relationships.

In primal times, just like sugary foods, domination and submission must have been self limiting. 

Yes you could dominate another human, but they didn't stay dominated. You could wrestle them to prove your dominance, but sooner or later you have to let them stand up. You could cow them into taking a submissive posture while you mate with them, but sooner or later you'll all have to go and look for food. 

If you both like that kind of thing, you can
string out the experience for hours or even days.
And, sure, in your routine interactions, everybody will remember who's alpha monkey, but if you push things too far, the others will gang up on you or just wander off.

Modern human civilisation is still a bit like that. You can be alpha in bed or in the night club, but moments of intense dynamic fade into a blander routine. 

Even if the structure of their life reflects a practical power differential, nobody vanilla is dominant or submissive when they are asleep. 

Vanilla D/s doesn't really stick (unless bad things are happening).

Kink changes all that. It makes power exchange sticky.

If you are dominant, you can, for example, tie somebody up. You don't have to keep them in a wrestling hold - or continuously fuck them in a dominant way - to keep the dynamic going. Instead, you can apply bondage gear, or put them in a cage, and fix them in their moment of submission. Safety permitting, you can even wander off to find some food, come back and they'll still be there. If you both like that kind of thing, you can string out the experience for hours or even days. can be dominant or
submissive even
while you sleep.
If you are submissive, for example, you don't have to ever stop being submissive, even when you aren't thinking about it. You can wear a collar or a chastity device, or a piercing, day-to-day. You can agree protocol and power exchange in your relationship.

So I think these are still the same primal urges at work but, thanks to modern kink, there are no longer natural limits on how far or how long we can go.

Depending on who's wearing a collar and what it's attached to, you can be dominant or submissive even while you sleep.

Great, isn't it?

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Sunday, 2 October 2016

If the kink is for real, so are the ethical problems of submission: The Multiple Orgasmic Virgin

A British Catholic girl - still a very particular sexual type -
she had a simmering intensity that
promised fire behind the icy exterior.
A well-groomed British Catholic girl - still a very particular sexual type - she had a simmering intensity that promised fire behind the icy exterior of her conservative blouse and skirt.

She even wore a little silver crucifix.

Think Vanessa from Penny Dreadful, but a virginal Vanessa brimming with a rage directed against the patriarchy of the sub culture to which she belonged but could not bring herself to reject.

The promise of erotic fire coiled with anger! She only had to sweep into the room to ping all my 20-something Femdom fantasies.

For just the same reason, she seemed so utterly out my league that I relaxed around her enough to make a connection. It turned out we had lots of shared interests and passions.

And so we fell into a relationship and thus in love.

There really was fire behind the ice.

There really was fire behind the ice. 
Behind the layers, she was wildly sensual, multiple orgasmic, and addicted to my tongue. The only snag - from the point of view of trying-to-be-normal-young-Giles - was that penetrative sex did nothing for her other than scare her and threaten her identity.

She came to me a virgin - "deflowering" is overrated as a sexual experience - and always felt that on some level she was letting the side down to "surrender" not just to a non-Catholic, but to a man. She was also - I think - terrified of getting pregnant, and thus penetrative sex made her tense. There could be no relaxing with experience, no slow seduction into the pleasures of the penis.

And, there was so much wrong with the relationship!

She was naturally dominant, but I was cast in the roll of bedroom educator, and also felt the need to push back. I introduced her to BDSM - naturally - but to the wrong BDSM: bondage with me tied up when she was never going to be much of a service top! I got her off so easily with my tongue, but was obsessed with doing it "properly" with my dick (and of course most women can't come by vaginal stimulation alone).

And so it was messy and stormy, and we were young and I was crap, and we broke up. I imagine - hope - she has forgotten me, or has vague memories of the intense but immature young man who was her first lover.  

Looking back up at what I've written I feel like an idiot and a pig. But this was a long long time ago.

So ethics.

...her fantasies of being served orally
by a young man trained for
just that purpose
What would have happened if (a) I had truly listened to her, and (b) male chastity devices had been readily available?

Had I listened properly, I would have taken note when she shared her fantasies of being served orally by a young man trained for just that purpose. I would also have understood that my penis wasn't going to get her off any time soon, and that the more she loved me the more I irritated her.

At first, at least, she was happy to experiment with Femdom.

I could have put on a collar and served her as a slave, told her I was fine with jerking off as a finale and that was how I wanted it. I could even have invited her to discipline me for the real things I did that annoyed her - which would have made much more sense than the fantasy context I wrapped around it.

I wouldn't actually have needed a device, but suppose I'd had one? Something practical like the one I'm wearing right now.

....a really unambiguous way of
taking the penis out of play. 
Male chastity devices are a really unambiguous way of taking the penis out of play.

"Just ignore my dick," is all very well, but it's still there, standing to attention, both mutely demanding sex and acting as visible a performance indicator. A chastity device hides the intrusive member and demonstrates seriousness about penis-free sex. And, if you leave the key elsewhere, then the penis really is out of play, at least when hard....

So, I think she would have loved that: Me acting mostly normal, an ardent lover, but no penis, just a tongue. From time to time, I would have gone into deeper submission so she could be pampered and vent her anger on me.

She would have been magnificent.

Now the ethics.

Attracted to men, but angry with them.

In need of a relationship, but defensive of her autonomy.

Would my submission have offered her
the only possible true homecoming? 
Sensual, but nervous of sex.

She dated before me, and after me. I think she was on a heroic journey to shed her baggage and be herself; to lose her hostility to men, to trade autonomy for intimacy, to unravel her inhibitions and learn to like sexual intercourse.

And there I would have been saying, "Don't bother with all that personal growth. Your baggage turns me on."

Her issues were real issues, and my flavour of Femdom would have let her really square the circle without resolving them: she was free to vent her hostility with a whip; she could be in charge of the relationship and therefor autonomous; she didn't need to have actual sex, ever, but could have as much oral as she could take.

What if that had worked and we'd settled down into a stable Female Led Relationship involving a lot of male chastity? Would it have been a good thing?

Would my submission have offered her the only possible true homecoming? Or would it have derailed her journey, stopped her from reaching her full potential?

How much should a sub consider the effect of offering their submission?

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