More On Lifestyle Only Femdom Invisibility

the invisible lifestyle only femdom

You have definitely heard me talk about this before (CN: whorearchy talk), but one of the biggest issues with the contrasting experience and norms of professional femdom VS lifestyle only femdom is our invisibility. I add “only” deliberately, as it’s rare to find a professional who will cop to it being just a job.

And I don’t think they are lying. Honestly, any immersion into the larger femdom community will show more similarities than points of difference. But, be that as it may, the perception of the non-existence of people like me is so strong that while nobody assumes a male dominant is say, a pro rigger, I am presumed to do this as at least a part time career.

The norm is to assume that lifestyle only femdom isn’t a thing, or if does exist, it’s the amateur or mirror version of a professional experience.

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Why I prefer femdom's culture

Defining (A Distinct) FemDom

Credit for the topic here goes to Natasha Strange of kittenwithawhip, who started a blogging project themed as “FemDom Society” (no not that one!) I’m not in the official roster, but I thought I would throw in my support with this.

Why Femdom As A Niche (VS BDSM as a Whole)?

I no longer believe you can define femdom as being just a dominant who happens to be female. To use kink dominance in men as the norm is to ignore that there is no reason to make women the other. In over a decade of practical activity, I can say that given the options, I think “Femdom” as a niche, is not only distinct enough to deserve clarification, but the most likely of the collective approaches to being kinky to give me what I want.

True, I’ve written a bunch about feeling like the stereotype of the domme doesn’t suit me over the last decade. As with anything with a decade in tenure, even just looking over my blog, some parts I’ve argued are very insightful and some parts are pure cringe. Criticisms of the niche are correct, that it is not, as a whole, any escape from a gendered restriction on how women are allowed to express power, and much of Femdom still focuses on what men want as a priority.

But, for all my contrary streak, I have never felt Femdom didn’t have a unique face, flavour and aesthetic. I am glad I kept at my picking, because contrasting the more universally framed culture of BDSM VS this more explicitly gendered part, Femdom is a heck of a lot more welcoming to dominant women in particular. Yes, male fantasies and desires do put a lot of pressure onto my behavior. Nonetheless, I do not believe Femdom is just a manufactured façade that excludes women from their own self representation. Further, I do not feel that the BDSM community as a whole gives me more voice than femdom, and in a lot of ways, I am significantly more invisible in the former.

Thus, if I am in the business of pursuing orgasms and emotional satisfaction, femdom has the largest chance of providing it to me. Not all parts, of course! For example I am not particularly enthusiastic about the female supremacy fetish version, and I don’t find much gratification in the full rejecting men except as beta eunuchs shitck either. But, I really like guacamole, but have the cilantro taster gene, and that doesn’t have to be mutually exclusive either.

More than that, I believe that rejecting femdom, as a dominant, skirts awfully close to the same “not like other girls” style misogyny that attempts to escape the oppressive parts of gender by attacking the feminine.

I did not always notice this. I think the moment I realized that I had to reconsider how I was choosing to approach my identity was when a regular fetlife mod of domme groups, Carolyn, commented that she had an easier time connecting and getting along with male dominants rather than equivalent peers. It was an innocent observation: Femdoms just seemed to have more in common with her and her approach to her sub.

Whoops. I can’t call it malice, but I grew up with a very parallel problem. I’m a nerd, and historically that has made me a minority in the gaming and fandoms I like. And it is extremely common for one of the reasons my female peers to cite for not having more female friends are that women are not only boring, but typically some version of crazy and competitive. I don’t think Carolyn meant that she generally doesn’t like women, but it made me deeply suspicious of rejecting anything domme coded just because.

Sure, there’s things, for me that are more typical in male dom culture (like feeling your sub is incredibly sexy) that click with me. Nonetheless, it really made me reassess both my own behaviour and how I perceived other dominants like me. I couldn’t go around assuming nobody has anything in common with me if I don’t try to understand them. So I did, and I have largely come to conclude there are enough femdoms like me in my desires and outlook to make the stereotypes of first impressions irrelevant.

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On The Cultural Limits of Conventional Femdom

So in addition to neglecting my femdom blog, I’m an avid participator in nerdy hobbies like roleplaying. Realistically this has always intersected with my sexuality- once I was charting my path beyond my parents running a tabletop for me.  I got interested in it partially because my head craves weird dynamics I can’t find in real life. Since my teens I’ve deliberately played with this.

I participated in a large LARP organization recently, where I played a stupidly popular character.  And what I discovered about this was how much people LOVE a dominant woman. Grown ass men calling me Mommy. Piles of people pledging fealty. Going out there and being me was a crucial part of the success of the character because the same energy I bring when my dominance gets to shine was present in the rambunctious, bawdy, loving ball of fluff that I played.  And it continues to remind me how disempowering the standard femdom shit is.

My character got gacked and part of the sadness I had to process is this outlet for a part of me to safely let my dom out was cut off. Once again, no place to be my whole self. (Although perhaps I should try living authentically instead of through fiction? The world is not very nice to dominant girls.)

I can say this and people will argue until the cows come home that it isn’t because they personally feel empowered by it, but the whole concept of being a dominatrix is a performative straight jacket created to give a context to have power in a limited context that’s “safe”. You put on the leather trousers and use the understood scripts and everyone has the jist of what you are trying to do, so presto- dominance!

There’s good reasons, since raw and undefined dynamics are potentially dangerous. The character of a dominatrix lets everyone wrangle consent in easier than starting from a blank slate and then trying to explain “so you are my victim and thrall but also you want it and are not being raped for real just vulnerable like an amusement park ride because I would never, ever hurt you”. Since part of dominance is buy in, it’s understandable to fall back something people but into easily.

Only that’s been jamming a square peg into a round hole from day one. Not a lot of room for complex sadomasochists who don’t fit Dungeon Mistress well.  Serious talk about it gets as far as accepting that being a dominatrix supersedes things like physical comfort, but  not that it’s bullshit in a world where femsubs get to fetishize regular dudes in power positions and I need a corset and implications of sex work.

There’s no space to talk about how my fetish self is Queen Elizabeth I not Ilsa Shewolf of the SS. There’s no space to be an insecure mess who also needs to be respected. To talk about your needs as something more than a menu of kinks, or worse, a dismissive declaration that the sub’s needs are irrelevant, is hard. But those options leave my needs unmet.

For example there doesn’t seem to be space to talk about preparing to feel sexually dominant by cleaning my bedroom floor and dusting, because I intend to have a man here and I must feel utterly in control of my space.  If I talk about the profound need to nurture my partner people will twig into it, but it’s not in the porn and it’s not in the archetypes.

As I write this, it’s doing that dusting and putting things to rights. I could have done this earlier, taken the bristle brush to the tiles of the bathroom, found the cobwebs in their corners and removed them (I fall on a medium on the neatness scale, much as I am neither extroverted or introverted) but it’s a good way to get my head in order. Momentarily I get to launch into some laundry, again, working to claim my space so I can claim someone else.

Scrub. Scrub. Visions of his naked body, the too long legs, the rust blond on his belly and chest and the odd shock of black hair on his lower back. I’m not offering him conventional femdom, but I suppose he’s not offering conventional submission.

Anticipate, court. Seduce. He said that while he’d aware the capacity is there most women just don’t do it for him. Is he asking for the conventional script done well or something else? What is the serendipitous leap that we need, that any couple needs to get that sing and sting of a unification between two people trying to make an exchange of power?

I cannot be anyone’s dominatrix. I can neither put that part of myself and its desire aside. So I think about this now, making my space mine before I make him mine.