Answering: “Am I A Femdom?”

vintage_whipOne of the hardest things about being a dominant woman is still got to be that initial hurdle when you have to reach that question in the first place “Am I a femdom?

The usual answer is “only if you choose to identify that way”, but for many people, that’s not enough. What, after all, is femdom? What benefit is choosing the label of dominant?

I’ve said it before: the state of education for new or curious femdoms sucks and the parameters for how it is expressed in popular culture is depressing. Even undergoing a sort of renaissance on the subject courtesy of the internet’s impact on the widespread acceptance of BDSM, the fact remains that this is part of kink where getting shown the proverbial ropes is a random and unstreamlined process. New doms fall into this the same way they always did- because an idea or a relationship dynamic they encountered resonated with them, or because they met someone with that kind of chemistry.

Only, for female dominants, its hard to find stuff aimed at us to try to get comfortable with the idea or be intrigued. And some women genuinely like the black clad villian dominatrix archetype. But one of the hardest things about being a female dom is making the expectations gell with your identity, and most of us grow up with other personal archetypes than Wicked Wanda.

So, what then?

When I started O Miss Pearl, it was part of a pornography project- trying to make sure stuff I liked was actually out there in a world where the only femdom I could reliably find was targeted at a set of fetishes I didn’t find remotely sexy. It came at a period when I was going through a bunch of personal self discovery – only months before that I discovered a blog “Bitchy Jones” and some images and discussions from other people that made me aware there was a part of myself that was best described as dominant. Femdom stories are still the mainstay of this blog and the most popular content- and I admit using my rudimentary knowledge of search-ability to make myself easier to find. But what I continue to discover, on forums and with talking to people that there’s a general idea that femdom is a very rigid sense of behaviours.

I diversified into writing about the how tos and the slice of life not just because I like attention, but because I felt like advice for dominants and the people who love them was competing with the works of popular ninnies who can’t remove themselves from stereotypes and professional dominatrix marketing copy.

This is a thorny issue- about all there seems to be that I can find are books like Uniquely Rika or Ferns contribution, autobiographical guides. There’s D/s manuals for kinky people, but the framing tends to slant to M/f. And nothing gets around the fact that the popular perception of femdom is something very different from male dom. For example, right now the go to book specifically for female dominants is still “The Mistress Manual”. The problem with this is that it’s more of a guide on being a Mistress in the professional sense than something addressing dominant women directly. You don’t have to be a dominant to act the Mistress, in the same way that gay-for-pay is a thing.

But on the line of lable fit: A lot of people start out in kink with a nebulous set of fantasies, and I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that many people who fit into one box or another best, often have at least rudimentary switch-y tendencies or fantasies that are more complicated than tidy binaries. for example sub men looking at porn of sub women is not unusual and in no way negates what he’s actually into with real people. Certainly there’s no shortage of people firmly in one camp or another who also can give self titillating input- for example my very sub red head friend tried dominance and knows it doesn’t fit her, but she still adores being the snarky person in the peanut gallery, egging someone on to dom a third party.

But identifying as a femdom, or even as a switch as femdom leanings, is an uphill battle. Between the oft stated suggestion that M/f is somehow the natural order of things and how people expect you to act as a dom, I feel like there’s a lot of people who think of themselves as subs who might enjoy switching if it were on their own terms and not forced down their throats as weird gender service thing. But even more than that, for many women, if you’re not into the packaged dominatrix thing and its simply a mater of sex being about power, it’s often easier to wear a vanilla hat and just do what you want than have to tell people all the things you’re not into.

But vanilla doesn’t exactly let you drill down to your favourite things, and it makes discussing consent a lot harder. People like Ferns mention that in their sexual history, control has always mattered deeply to them- but sans the ability to consent it may be challenging to verbalize what you are looking for.

Answering if you are a femdom is about your fantasies, and your comfort levels. It has nothing to do with what you choose to wear or which fetishes you choose to indulge in. To be precise, being dominant is about what makes you feel dominant, whether its via a traditional dominatrix getup or something entirely outside the BDSM cliches. Its not about being what makes subs feel submissive (although that can power your dominant feelings) but what gives you the feeling of dominance. And if you want that feeling, and you don’t want the feelings that are oriented around submission, voilà, a dominant.

This, however, is not uncomplimentary to vanilla sexuality or being a switch. Don’t feel that an interest in either somehow makes your dominance inferior or lesser to someone whose emotional or sexual range is more oriented towards D/s. Which brings me to another point- branding yourself as a dominant is in a large part aspirational. The femdom lable is not to show you are someone’s dominant, its to talk about what you like- a particular power dynamic, of which the hows and whys of how that is achieved are much more variable and fluid.

“Am I a femdom?” Well, do you like the idea and logistics of having power in your relationships, either in a limited or complete fashion, and do your identify as female?

Previous Post
Leave a comment

2 Comments

  1. Isn’t there many types (label) of Femdom, other than the Evil Dominatrix ? Like the sensual domme, the mommy, the loving domme, etc ? Or does even those labels turn around the same kind of female dominant ?

    Reply
  1. 16 Most Popular Posts of 2015 - O Miss Pearl

Go on, say what you think!

%d bloggers like this: