Lifestyle Only Femdom Blues

I wish I could say I am a dominant without people assuming I am a pro (or a man), but I would also like that not to be at the expense of anyone else. To be a lifestyle only domme is, for the most part, invisibility, but the conversation on the problem is poisoned by whorephobia.

In this regards, even my writing on the topic, over the last 10 years, hasn’t always been ok. Acknowledging this issue, nonetheless: for our culture at large, the general handling of my desires is to treat it like something that will make others happy or at the very least, to focus on how it will make me feel as far as how others react to me. Dominance, in women and femmes, is not allowed to just *be*.

Even in lifestyle only land, our forums are dogged by the single minded demand: where are the dommes and how do we get them? To these men, I am not a thing that might want him, to be bargained with as an equal or a suitor, I am more akin to the rib they hope to rip from themselves into the form of a helpmeet. My existence and authenticity is defined by my ability to complete someone else. 

Yes, the roots of this is heterofatalist nonsense, the same pressures demanding compulsory monogamy of vanillas. And yet, notably, my status as a thing that is presumed to meet desires doesn’t have the Domme version of warning me I’ll be a crazy cat lady spinster if I don’t settle. Likewise, no boyfriend, husband or fiancé will deter them the way that vanilla and Dom men alike imagine I could be claimed. A Domme, in her being wanted, is presumed to be there to satisfy. Hell, a Domme, existing, is presumed to be what is wanted. I’m not! I swear, I’m terrible.

This also is belayed in how Dommes are taught, formally and informally, to be.

Through workshop and book alike, femdom is packaged as a vocation or a toolkit that will empower you, not through discovery of your own pleasure, but the same old bad girl wins at hustle culture fantasy. Education is almost always gendered. Male dominants, for all their limited wardrobes, are treated as stepping into an aspect of masculinity, but for me, there’s a template and faking it until I make it.

It’s not all bad- the new topping and bottoming book are a bastion of gender neutrality and deserve their place in the canon. And yet, step out of the very performed-identity focused domme specific classes and into the BDSM scene at large, and prepare for just about everything to be built to assume you are a man topping women. And, get ready to deal with a steady train of people sure you are a less than, and if you dominate men that you are a threat and they are repulsive.

I decided, in the end, weird rapey ropetop dudes and femdom’s closer embrace to queerness and it’s transgression were enough to make me pick a side… But, as a Domme, I am (largely) not interested in being skilled, or having presence. I want a “persona” like I want another hole in my head. I don’t think nobody should want these things, but none of this is to the benefit of my orgasms and dorky power fantasies. Even as a least bad culture fit, the real me is very much an afterthought in femdom.

Don’t get me wrong, I am happy to have a sub and know my way enough around what I am doing to do so safely. And I am lucky that there’s plenty of humans extant to which a domme can complement rather than complete. Likewise, I don’t have a strong opinion on “pyjamas vs corsets”, I like both of them, but I like them from a position of being certified trash who doesn’t want to be compelled to wear either. I am writing this in an ugly beige t-shirt dress that I threw on because my stamina fell out the moment my work day ended. This isn’t a mark of my authenticity, it means I have given up on life for the next 3 to 6 hours. 

Someone might find that hot, but I don’t care and I don’t want to care.

That part is the problem. It’s where the gaze is turned, all the damn time, unrelenting. On me, never from me. And yet, despite having the worst temperament, flabbergastingly people keep kindly trying to nudge me to hang out a shingle. Some extremely well meaning people in the field have even encouraged me as if I lacked confidence. Me, the don’t wanna be touched, don’t wanna be vulnerable train wreck, was told I could definitely make it work, because my dominance could push through pretty much anything. No, being a pro is a hard, people focused job. I am a pervert, not an entrepreneur.

I don’t want to be paid to dominate, I want to be pandered to by creative professionals who want to take my money to sell me my fantasies, usually via prose and illustration. Just like the femsubs and dudes of any orientation. They enjoy an ocean of porn. Seriously, in the case of the femsubs, they are so omnipresent that in any given romance novel the odds some lady’s do me sub fantasies are getting tickled is about 50/50.

Instead, I am told for money purposes I don’t exist. I am as elusive a market to care about, as I am to the dudes who seek me to complete them. And boy howdy is that an incredibly alienating place to be.

2 thoughts on “Lifestyle Only Femdom Blues”

  1. That’s a lot to unpack, but I do understand the frustration you expressed and sympathize. Especially when it comes to male subs. There are, I believe. two things that explain the experiences you shared in that regard. First, since about the time the Fifty Shades novels and films came out, authentic male subs are few and far between. Most “submissive males” are just horny guys looking for a dominant woman to help them enact their porn-fueled fantasies by making them do kinky stuff that makes them horny. That’s why they regard lifestyle dommes as kink vending machines. That’s the sum of their interests. And most look for lifestyle dommes because they don’t think they should have to pay to get what they want. After all, shouldn’t she swoon at the opportunity to dominate them? Second, we live in an increasingly selfish society, especially in the West. It’s all about me, right? No matter what endeavor you care to name, everyone’s first thought is, “What’s in it for me?” The vast majority of people could care less what’s in it for you. That’s your problem. So, sadly, I have little confidence you will ever see things get any better. I hate cliches, but, “It is what it is.” Long time reader and first time commenter. You write some of the most intelligent and thought-provoking posts I’ve read in this space and I appreciate you for that. Be well.

    JK

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  2. I remember my own comical experiences engaging with femdom communities online. A sea of thoughtless, sexist men saying inane shit about d/s and harassing a small group of dominant women, who would eventually crack and explode in public tirades about all the unacceptable behavior coming from random men online.

    Genuine submissive men would always feel uncomfortable because on one side, you have the worst men imaginable sharing your space, and on the other side, the dominant women are in fight or flight mode wondering if you’re another dick pic type. And the sexist bedroom bottom men would always try and colonize the space by pushing their ideas of d/s onto everybody else.

    Contrast with maledom spaces, and it’s basically just dudes patting each other on the back while kneeling women smile at them.

    Eventually I realized what my problem was. I was looking for community on social media, a frictionless medium, which brings the absolute lowest of men into discussions where they don’t belong. These men should be passively consuming porn, and saying absolutely nothing. They are not submissive, they are bedroom bottoms with terrible ideas about women and their place, and they should stay single. So I stopped frequenting these spaces and switched to blogs. Blogs have natural friction and this gatekeeps a massive portion of those men. It’s like a breath of fresh air.

    Our culture is, as you note, extremely unready to entertain the notion of women just wanting things and getting them for themselves. And as a sub man, the women I’ve dated have felt that same pressure to do what I want, and not what they want, when what I want is to know what they want. It’s messed up. And for every authentic piece of lifestyle advice out there, there’s a thousand “authentic lifestyle advice” books that just teach the “angry leather boot dominatrix” as the standard method. Most dominant women I’ve known have had no interest in it, and most submissive men I’ve known find it funny and not at all sexy.

    This post was very helpful to me to let out some of my own anger at the space, so I thank you for it. I hope it’s ok I left these thoughts here. I’m only now beginning to post on peoples’ blogs and I don’t fully understand the expectations or social norms involved.

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