Reader Letter: How Should My Femdom Act?

letter2This question comes the way of an unlucky fellow, who wrote to me to get some insight on how exactly he was supposed to expect a dominant woman he was dating to treat him. His first relationship made him feel like crap because of how inconsiderate dom #1 was, but dom #2 just doesn’t unilaterally take control all the time. And, he’s not sure what he even wants, so he’s not sure how to help her help him, or even if that’s backleading?

It’s a common question, so I’ll let him share it in his own words.

Dear Miss Pearl:

I have a few questions if you wouldn’t mind sharing some insight. In the past four years I have slowly come to realize i fall on the submissive side but I don’t really know what it is i desire most of the time. Be that sexually or just in general. My first real relationship was with a girl who decided i needed to be her “slave” and its left me vary confused and unsure of myself.

She said things like, “i’m going to break you for all other women”. I really didn’t understand what she meant at the time… Still kinda don’t ūüėź … She often put me last on her list and didn’t listen to any of my input so now its difficult to speak freely even with that relationship being over. I’m not the average jerk without dedication so i truly put everything i had into the relationship but in the end i was just sucked dry for ever ounce of goodness in my heart. I get the feeling i was being used from the start but as a dedicated “submissive?” i just kept trying to give until i had nothing left for myself.

So my first question is, if you are overly submissive how do you protect yourself?

My second is in regards to teaching and learning: I’m dating a woman who seems to enjoy being in control, but she doesn’t know what to do and me being all kinds of confused, i don’t know how to explain what it is i wan’t or need in our dynamic. I may also be mistaken and she could just be a submissive as well trying to fit a mold. Which makes me wonder if its even possible for two submissive to function properly in a relationship? We both constantly give way to each other so something as simple as picking a movie or what to eat for dinner can turn into a “after you” match.

-Lost And Confused

Dear LaC:

It sounds like your first relationship was really toxic. Her dominance is not blanket permission for her to treat you poorly. A healthy D/s negotiates the particulars of the ‘mean’ things that happen in the relationship, for example name calling, hitting, demanding things, etc… Power exchange relationships are about two people agreeing to a dynamic that makes them both feel emotional¬†and/or sexual warm and fuzzies.

Really, if you have lingering self doubts and damage, I suggest you talk it out with a therapist. You are in the exact same position as a vanilla person with a terrible, self esteem destroying partner. You deserve to feel good, and a healthy femdom relationship in real life looks a lot like what’s documented here than anything in porn.

Now about girl #2… It seems like your problem is that you are waiting around for a dom-in-a-box dynamic, where in your first relationship the woman just handed you what her vision of dominance was, so you expect/want the next girl to do the same. I’ve said this before, that the end goal of a submissive is to feel submissive and the end goal of a dominant is to feel dominant. Where the relationship thrives is where these two desires feed each other and how your behaviors compliment the other.

Passivity is NOT submission. It doesn’t mean you have to like passivity, but if she’s largely indifferent to the movie you watch tonight, that’s neither here nor there to if she feels dominant. It might not make you feel submissive (which is important to you, I will grant), but that is not by how dominance is measured.

The fact that you don’t know what you want seems like the bigger problem, because the issue you have is not whether she feels dominant. it’s getting your needs met. All is not lost, the answer to that is lots and lots of experimentation. Start small. Pretty much nobody launches into a 24/7 TPE (total power exchange) relationship from day one, and the ones that exist evolved slowly, from dating and play, and so on.

Being a submissive trying to communicate the desire to feel submissive adds an extra level of complexity, at least in so far as that most subs are now terrified of the dreaded ‘topping from the bottom’ lable, but also if you have to call the shots it can detract from the subby feeling. My best advice is that you need to take two things into account:

  1. What she wants might not actually involve stereotypical dominatrix type behaviors. For example in the nightly movie picking debate she might want you to pick it so she doesn’t have to think about little things. “I don’t want to think about this” is a luxury for many people, regardless of kinks.
  2. You should¬†control in negotiated parameters (eg “for Tuesday for 3 hours I will obey any order within my limits, safewords notwithstanding”), and in fact expecting someone to unilaterally be all dom all the time without those negotiations is extremely unsafe. Nobody should just walk in and start bossing you around. Further more keep in mind “I want you to be dominant” is very vague instructions and not enough for any partner to go on by itself.

One last tip- the best thing you can do to completely undermine your dom is to tell her you don’t think she is *really* dominant, particularly because you aren’t feeling submissive. So when you work on getting your needs met, don’t sit around waiting for a real dom to make you do what you secretly want but don’t know yet. Work with your girlfriend and discover that magical place you both want.

That’s my advice- you guys want to weigh in, in the comments?

Femdom Nouvelle and Beyond BDSM

Louis-Malteste-Miss

There are moments where kink gets frustrating because no label is ever a good enough fit to eliminate the ‚Äúyes, but…‚ÄĚ factor. I’m a femdom, but… I don’t dress or act like a porn clich√©. Is that a “Real Femdom“? Well, making that claim is as bad as calling yourself a Real Woman, since you can hardly argue¬†your version is the definitive one. I’m a femdom, but I don’t act like I hold my male partners in contempt, so Sensual Femdom often gets used here, but… I also don’t play soft. And so it goes.

So I could just call myself a “femdom” and let other people figure it out, but I feel like 99% of the aesthetic of my sexual fetishes remains the property of a mostly male audience. I might volunteer moderate /r/femdom, but I don’t masturbate to images of these women. As they are depicted I don’t even want to be these women, as much as I respect their right to exist, and yet they are treated as representative of me. So, Non-Professional Femdom? Nope, that axis has some data points I already covered, but other than talking about the expectations of objectification ¬†it is likely to slide into good old sex worker shaming. Lifestyle Femdom? Lifestyle implies I live in a removed¬†culture apart from all things vanilla, like some sort of separatist commune and I don’t have a 24/7 dynamic.

All kinky people deal with trope and stereotype expectations- plenty of male noobs ask if they can love their subs or worry about being psychopaths in their own eyes or the perception of others. On the other hand, the imagery of kink is more concerned with servicing their needs than defining their image- there are the Christian Greys of fictions improbable standards and masculinity’s own traps and snares but there just isn’t the same instant pull “yes, that’s what a mandom is!” the way that Princess Donna and Mistress Madeline and their fictional sisters completely abrogate my existence.

Long term readers know my clinging to “Dom” as a self description without the gender modifier and might have picked up on my persistence in talking about male dom with the same gender-ed bracketing, because of that feminism thing where I try to shove a snowball into a mitten before popping it into a fire in the hope that using “Domme” only on those personally identified as such will stop it being the default people use on me. Because apparently I’m the sort of person who engages in Amazon Linguistics.

Thing is, the reason why femdoms seem to be really scarce is because it doesn’t really include much room for female desire and this has been a persistent problem, not because women aren’t kinky but because how we construct out labels is entirely an effort to coral messy, often fluid sexuality into neat niches and these niches *suck*.

So Lets Talk About You, The Reader And How You Experience Kink & BDSM

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Reader Letter: New Femdom Tips

letter2This reader popped in with a quick couple of questions all focused around the perennial need for new femdom tips. every one of us were knew once, so I’ve taken the time to give some advice I wish I’d had over a decade ago. so, first, their letter:

Dear Miss Pearl:

I just discovered your blog and i love it! I was doing research on femdom and I have been down the rabbit hole since a month ago. I need your advice: I have just (virtually) conected with a guy via a popular dating website. He’s very cute and he seems to be very much into me (my curves). Anyways, while talking to him it came up that he loves being dominated by women, and he especially likes facesitting, verbal and physical humiliation, body worship, and scissoring. He has never acted on his fantasies. This was all new to me, but through online research I got very turned on at the idea of participating into something like this. How do I go on about it? How do I ensure that I am confident enough to carry out domination roles? I have some ideas, and I love teasing (both physically and psychologically) but I guess I need some real advice for newbies.

Newbie dom guides are a still an underserved subject, particularly for women.

Although a lot of good authors have given the kinky manual their best shot with things like “The New Topping Book”, as my reader astutely observed, there is a distinct lack of advice for new femdoms. Some efforts are made- The Mistress Manual is definitely your dominatrix DIY go to if you just want to fit the porn and professional archetype really well, but as a new female dominant who is not hanging out your shingle to work/just trying to keep someone else happy, the trick is striking the balance between your own fulfillment and feeling desired by your partner. So moving beyond how a stereotypical femdom acts:

The good and bad news is that there’s no one right way to do it. However, there’s a few general things that every new dom can use for starters:

1) It’s About You – Part of cultivating a version of dominance that makes you happy is finding the aspects and behaviors that¬†work for you and eliminating the ones that do nothing. Generally a lot of guys have their own submissive fantasies, but some of the inertia has to come from what you get out of it- a good lover will generally be happiest if you are getting what you want too. Remember you make you a dom- you don’t get that way by following a script, whether supplied by stereotypes or your sub.

With that, you should think about the outcomes that make you happy. Whether its witnessing whimpering male cuteness/helpless lust, or the chuffed feeling of leading, you need to define what it means to you to feel dominant and use your partner’s help to achieve that state.

2) Slow and Steady РWhen you get started, pace yourself with a little bit at a time Talk about ideas you find sexy in the bedroom as dirty talk, try light bondage and less complicated things like a gentle spanking. You can always add more if you like it, but if you try to leap into instant Fetish Queen mode you may discover that focusing on getting it right kills the mood. It is not that I think that BDSM is a big scary thing that will end in explosions and police if you make one wrong move, its if you make your goals small you will feel more confident and thus come across as more dominant.

3) Trust Your Intuition, But Talk About It – Dominance is balancing what you find fun with what you know to be his limits. Trust your intuition, but have safewords and measures in place so you are comfortable pulling the plug if things go in the wrong direction.¬†A good part of the work behind having successful kink¬†scenes (kinky encounters, sexual or otherwise, basically) is reading your submissive partner’s reaction- look for vulnerable but hopeful body language as you “yaye!” and stiffening, looking awkward and so on as your early red flag. Learning to dominate someone is about drawing the response you want out of someone. Therefore trust and nurture your instincts when it comes to pulling back or pushing harder, but also don’t be afraid to discuss it after the fact.

4) Understand that Fantasy and Reality Are Not Perfect Mirrors¬†– One of the biggest let downs people get from kink is going into it with the expectation that everything will work out like their imagination says it will. The reality is that we often fetishize things a bit too extreme to be sensible, or the sensations in our head aren’t a perfect match for the real thing and so on. When playing with noobs, have patience and discourage them from over committing. With your new guy, chances are a happy dom woman is Aphrodite herself ascending from the heavens and you make get a stage of Promise All The Things and Try All The Things. Feel free to pull rank and refer back to Slow and Steady as per advice #2.

5) Build From What Works –You both like tease and denial? Fabulous! That gives you a great foundation to build from, experimenting with something you both know is good for you. If you want to try adding new things, try combining aspects of your favourite activities with the new thing- for example if you want to try obedience games, try having him be teased until he promises you something and surrenders a forfeit. Although there is a time and place for “Honey, tonight we are going to try latex!”, its good to have a mix of tried and trues and well as novelties.

6) Don’t Let Being a Dom Box You In. There is no non-dominant sexual acts or feelings. It can be particularly tempting to try to play the part of the perfectly in control uber dom who knows no human attachment and hasn’t cracked a smile in the last century. Be you. You are the dom, and if that person is giggly, prone to crying easily, or likes penetrative intercourse or wearing kitty ears or whatever, doing things the way you like is more dominant than trying to be someone you aren’t.

9 Reasons to Block and Delete a Sub Sending You a Message

letter2Female dominants get messages, partnered or unpartnered, searching or trying to hide. In honour of the recent batch of crazy letters and threats, I’ve created a quick guide for new femdoms for signs you should save yourself the trouble and delete the message now. If any of these nine behaviors have come up in the guy’s efforts to talk to me, I’ve never found any good was going to come out of the interaction.

1) Tries to rapidly escalate or control the conversation medium. If you’re on a dating site, they try to push for an in person meeting immediately. If you’re online, they try to get you to give them more contact information right away or keep pushing to switch to another medium, eg going from email to chat, or guessing at your geographic location (such as “did I see you on X street?”)

Why this is bad: Taking the time to feel comfortable is important when you’re getting to know new people, among many things because it lets you figure out who they are on your own terms. Someone who pushes you this way doesn’t care about this and may even want you to disregard something about them you would pick up on if you took your time.

2) Instantly appears enamored of you and/or tries to force a D/s dynamic right away. They greet you with loud and hyperbolic praises, more so than simply a polite, respectful compliment or two – or they start trying to sub to you right off the bat. Alternatively, within a handful of messages you are, according to them, the best person they have ever met.

Why this is bad: An actual attachment to someone takes knowing them – anything else is fantasy they’ve created in their heads. The problem with being put on a pedestal this way is that if you do anything to topple off your perch, you are put at risk for them not being able to handle reality.

3) Only seems to know about femdom from porn. They have a particular, rigid understanding of roles and relationships and seem startled when anything deviates from their script. For example, they don’t seem to know negotiated limits are a thing or think dominants and subs are a special class of people under different rules than everyone else.

Why this is bad: If we were a few decades ago, the lack of material available would make this attitude slightly more forgivable. These days, the sheer wealth of knowledge presented¬†to the newly self identified as kinked means that anyone with an internet connection can find scads of teaching resources. Therefore it shows a disproportionate willingness to let what they want to be true be the case, and more to the point, they’ve absolved responsibility for themselves.

4) Instant or whirlwind courtship commitment. From the word go they are already sure you are the one. They will relocate, marry you, whatever. Their heart is, according to them, true, and belongs only to you. This is probably combined with #2 – in their eyes you are the best and most beautiful and they want your collar NOW.

Why this is bad: Once again, this person is chasing a feeling more than trying to have a meaningful, nuanced relationship. This also tends to be a pattern in people with personality disorders- super epic passion followed by a crash when they stop being able to sustain things.

5) Claims they “read all your profile” or writing, but can’t answer simple questions about it, or takes and approach counter to what you’ve written about yourself and your preferences. You say you want a poly relationship and they talk about monogamy. You say you are a down to earth tomboy and they talk about how feminine you are. You say you hate being called titles and they open with ‘Mistress’.

Why this is bad: Being forced into being a fantasy prop is a perennial problem for femdoms, and also this sort of nonsense is proof of the person’s willingness to lie to you from the start, instead of saying “I liked what I read so far”.

6) You have a really bad feeling about this. Something feels off, but you can’t put your finger on it and you feel bad about not giving them the benefit of the doubt. Maybe they are just awkward or have a socialization disorder?

Why this is bad: Trust your gut. Women, in particular, are taught to disregard symptoms of dislike and make nice and forgive. Protect yourself. Even if you feel like a meanie – adults with social problems aren’t automatically allowed to put you at risk by trying to be open minded and most actually awkward people are balls of blushing apologies, not the type of people who make you feel itchy under¬†your skin.

7) They have nothing nice to say about other people. All the other femdoms were findoms or fakes. They were crazy or ugly. You’re different of course! Not like their bitch ex- or their wife who’s a prude, their abusive parents or shitty boss.

Why this is bad: Everyone knows some bad people in their life, but if all the people they know are horrible by their description it’s statistically more probable they are the problem. and cross them and you will be just another fake who hurt them, according to what they tell the next woman.

8) They start telling you what to do,¬†or¬†expressing really strong preferences about other people or you. Maybe it’s phrased as introducing themselves, but they want to make sure you know that they like a particular thing, for example they start worrying about you getting fat or thin, they make appearance based suggestions or offer unsolicited critiques.

Why this is bad:¬†This person is a controlling jerk who thinks they are just being honest. they won’t care about you except such that they can cram you into the shape they wish you were.

9) They want to talk about what gets them or you off in detail right away. You get asked to describe scenarios, share your fantasies, or they just won’t STFU about co-eds in ballet flats or busty trans leatherwomen.

Why this is bad:¬†Wanker! This person is going to try to use you to titillate them. If their fantasy talk is all you want, good, but don’t expect things to get better or to focus on anything other than immediate gratification.

With this sort of winnowing in mind, consider it a chance to save your valuable time for only the worthwhile people. And remember, you don’t owe anyone a chance more than you deserve to feel safe.

What did I miss? What are your favourite signs that things just not going to go well?