The devaluation of male submission

Note: In this entry I will be speaking as if female domination and male submission occur only in heterosexual cisgendered pairings. This obviously isn’t the case, but for simplicity’s sake, that is what I’m addressing at the moment.

I recently received a comment on Deeply Deviant that was the final push I needed to persuade me to try to tackle the devaluation of submissive men. Here’s what was said:

I'm a 33 yr old submissive male.  I just wanted to
tell you how much I love your site, especially the
pics of your submissive boyfriend.... not because
I like looking at your sub boyfriend (I only like
girls), but because you take nude pics of him and
talk about his "beautiful boy curves".  It is very
inspiring to me, to see a dominant and "devious"
woman who is also, apparently in love with her sub
boyfriend and truly cares for him.  You take nude
pics of your boyfriend, like guys (not me, but lots
of other guys), take nude pics of their
girlfriends.... That is wonderfully amazing to me!
The "aftercare" pic almost made me cry... and I'm
totally serious.  This is one of the most beautiful
things I have ever seen on the internet.  Please
keep doing it...

While I love receiving comments like this because one of the things I hoped to achieve by posting the pictures I take of my boyfriend online, it is also a reminder of the fact that this public adoration (and objectification) of a male submissive is rare. As I’ve come to realize the fucked up state of femdom, I’ve concurrently become aware of the fucked up state of male submission – namely, it’s devaluation. While female dominants are made out to be some scarce resource, male submissives are depicted as a dime a dozen – common, and, even more disturbingly, weak and worthless. It’s unclear why this is. Certainly it hints at what is fucked up about society’s take on gender and sexuality – men are supposed to be the assertive ones, while women are supposed to be demure; men are supposed to be sex-crazy lunatics, while women obviously don’t take great interest or pleasure in such depraved acts.

This then seems to influence the way that people approach the BDSM community. There seems to be a very sexist attitude towards F/m. Like Bitchy Jones, I assume that the ratio of female dominants to male submissives is actually more like 1:1 than 1:20, and, as she says,

19 out of every twenty dominant women aren’t happy or comfortable with femdom as an identity or a place to live. That’s a lot.

What is it that makes dominant women uncomfortable with femdom? There are a lot of things. One of the biggest is the sexist attitude that is rampant in the BDSM community. It often seems like women have to remain ice queens, untarnished by actually having penile-vaginal intercourse with their male subs. However, if they want to they can become more male, and thus, more dominant by strapping on and becoming – duh duh duh – The Penetrator. This isn’t to say that there’s anything wrong with strapping on (I’m a fan myself), but a sex act does not a Dominant (or a submissive) make and we can’t just superimpose the male-female dichotomy onto Dominant-submissive and expect that to make anyone happy.

It’s not just female dominants who are getting a raw deal and are having to battle through a mire of expectations in order to engage in the kink they thought they loved. Male submissives find themselves in a community with very few potential partners. Of the potential partners, many will be professional dominatrices, and many (even non-pros) will expect their submission straight out of the gate because of a hidden assumption that if you’re a submissive man you must be willing to submit to just anyone. In defense of these Doms, the moment a woman signs up for any BDSM website she will get an influx of messages from men offering just that – men who want to be her “slave” who have never even had a conversation with her. However, after wading through these fantasists, a dominant woman will eventually find a man who fits her bill because she is valued, and thus, many men will be willing to try to do so.

Submissive men, however, have a much harder time. Because there is this perception of a ratio like 1:20 and because many submissive men either perpetuate the femdom icequeen-bitch ideal that no woman can or perhaps should live up to on a day-to-day basis, male submissives become devalued.

Some have suggested that female pro-dommes also devalue male submission (my boyfriend for one). I don’t think that pro-Dommes cause this problem, but I think that oftentimes they don’t help. Pro-Dommes meet a need. They are the supply to a demand. However, they contribute to the perpetuation of a picture of female domination that just doesn’t reflect real life. But they’re not the root of that problem. As a parallel, just because vanilla men have sex workers and porn doesn’t mean that they don’t know that they can’t expect the same look and sex acts from their girlfriends and wives. However, imagine a world in which vanilla men didn’t meet any women until they began encountering sex workers and porn. This could lead to a much more confusing dynamic for both those vanilla men and the non-professional women they might encounter.

I don’t generally wear corsets, stockings, PVC, leather, or high heels when I dom my boyfriend. I love fucking him up the ass, but I also love being fucked up the ass. I regularly beat my boyfriend with various implements and might tie him up (and love doing both of these things). However, I sometimes tell him to pull my hair, bite me, flog me or cane me because I am a masochist. When we do this, we are not ‘switching’. I love pain. It makes me come. I instruct him in exactly what kind of pain I like and how to administer it, just as I tell him exactly how I want him to lick my cunt or finger me. I tell my submissive to do something that makes me come, and he does it. Exterior trappings or individual acts are not what make dominance and submission. It is the connection, the control; one person leading another on a journey of trust and intimacy. I am the one who leads.

I value my submissive. He is unique in his understanding of me and his willingness to be my partner in crime wherever our whims might take us. I value our communication with each other. He challenges me to live up to the values we both espouse, and lets me know what his needs and wants are. I value his vulnerability. This is one of the biggest things. Our culture unfortunately often portrays men who are vulnerable as weaklings. My boyfriend’s vulnerability with me is his biggest strength. It is what makes him so very beautiful to me. I value the fact that my boyfriend is submissive to me, personally, and not some femdom ideal. I value my boyfriend for his love of pleasing me. I value my boyfriend’s willingness to follow my lead, and his ability to do so while still offering his own opinions. By sharing this, I hope to inspire other submissives to realize that they too should be valued for who they are and what they have to offer. We each have that right regardless of our BDSM role.

Posted on June 3, 2011, in FemDom, submissive, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 75 Comments.

  1. I have been waiting for this kind of writing about male submission to come from a dominant woman for a long, long time. I’m going to go out on a limb and say that one of the reasons I’ve been waiting for this is because people will listen to you because you are a dominant woman, and while people have heard this from (certain) submissive men like me for a while, the simple fact is that any woman who writes half as well as you do about issues like this will get about a bazillion times more pageviews than I will ever hope to get because of the issues you articulate here.

    That’s fucked up bullshit right there.

    I usually have some kind of critique or a knack for pointing out where people are wrong. While my words would have been harsher in some places, I have no substantive criticism. I think everything in this post was spot-fucking-on.

    • I forgot to say thank you for the signal boost May. Thanks! I have indeed had a massive upsurge in page views because of this post. My dashboard tells me that this is mostly because of you and the Sex is Not the Enemy tumblr (which I love).

      • I forgot to say thank you for the signal boost May. Thanks! I have indeed had a massive upsurge in page views because of this post. My dashboard tells me that this is mostly because of you and the Sex is Not the Enemy tumblr (which I love).

        You don’t need to thank me. The “massive upsurge in pageviews because of this post” you report makes me happy. I should be thanking you, which I’ve just realized I didn’t do in any of my 5 previous comments.

        So, first, please forgive me for eliding my thanks. And, second, thank you for writing this post.

  2. Here thanks to maymay’s signal boost 🙂

    I really liked this particular point:

    As a parallel, just because vanilla men have sex workers and porn doesn’t mean that they don’t know that they can’t expect the same look and sex acts from their girlfriends and wives. However, imagine a world in which vanilla men didn’t meet any women until they began encountering sex workers and porn.

    I rant and rave about how few realistic role models there are for female domination, but I just realized that as bad as the role models for me are, the role models for submissive men are even worse. How can a submissive guy feel like he has any value when so much femdom porn involves treating submissive men as worthless and interchangeable?

    It makes me happy to see a dominant woman writing about these issues – I think submissive men who complain about the scene/kink community/whatever you call it get written off as whiners who are just bitter because they haven’t found a partner. When dominant women point out these problems, more people listen because we supposedly* have all the advantages, so if we’re complaining, something might really be wrong.

    *That’s a whole other rant 🙂

    • Absolutely. I started this blog because we lost bitchy. While I can’t hope to fill her fluffy slippers, I figured there need to be women out there talking about an alternative to the stereotypes offered by the scene and the media. I may get my boyfriend to write every once and awhile to give the complimentary perspective.

      • I found your post via the sexisnottheenemy Tumblr and I was just thinking that, hell, I haven’t read stuff that seems so healthy and positive written about femdom since Bitchy quit blogging, so it’s cool to know that you’re partly inspired by her! Thank you so much for putting your time and energy into offering an alternative to the stereotypes.

  3. Great post. I too am together with a beloved man whose company I cherish and whose submission I consider an awesome talent. People who look down on this talent are not people I want to spend time with.

    I assume that the ratio of female dominants to male submissives is actually more like 1:1

    Yes. This is my impression too. Those who aren’t very visible aren’t nonexistent, they are repelled. One of the repellent factors is people devaluing and erasing male submission.

    imagine a world in which vanilla men didn’t meet any women until they began encountering sex workers and porn

    They’d imagine their own role by default as being a client.

    I call this client mentality: seeing oneself by default as a client, and in ordinary social situations acting as if one were a client. Especially submissive men need a good backbone to withstand this pressure.

    • Afterthought –

      I don’t generally wear corsets, stockings, PVC, leather, or high heels when I dom

      To this I can say: Ditto. Only for me, it’s not don’t generally, it’s never.

      Clothing fetishes are just one thing among so many: They turn some people on, leave some indifferent, turn some off. Just like all sorts of other stuff which people can be into or not. In my case, these specific types of clothes turn me off. My submissive partner isn’t into them either. Doing our BDSM stuff without these clothing fetishes all the time, I get regulary weirded out when people assume that being into BDSM necessarily involves them.

  4. Dishevelled Domina

    Yes!
    I’m so glad you pimped this over at Tom Allen’s.
    I’ve been paired off for a long time, and we’re not public players, so the ratio nonsense means nothing to me in real terms.
    Several of your points here echo what I said in my last post, but you’ve gone in a slightly different direction with it, and much further in your defense of male submission, and I agree wholeheartedly. I love that you’ve articulated a view so close to my own about subguys.

    Go Dev!

  5. As a dominant woman, this post nailed it! I have been so repulsed by the main BDSM scene – I’ve never participated in it at all. My submissive partners value themselves inside and outside of the bedroom, know what they want, and that relationships grow with time and submissive trust can’t be automatic and instant.

    My longest D/s relationship (with my husband) has been an exercise in exploring emotional boundaries with each other, and helping each other not only in sexual enjoyment (though there’s plenty of that!) but as human beings, to become more confident and happy outside the bedroom as well as in it.

    He is not weak or worthless (nor does he think of himself as such) and I am not an untouchable ice-queen, and no matter who’s fucking who, I am the Domme and he is the sub, and we both know and love that.

  6. (Here via sexisnottheenemy)

    From someone still exploring her dominant side, thanks for this. Porn and the offline BDSM community often make me feel like I’m “doing it wrong” somehow between enjoying PIV, affection towards my submissive partner, and a frequent disinterest in dressing up.

    • 🙂 Glad I could help. I’m no expert really, but I know it can be hard wading through all the bullshit, so I thought I would document my own journey to hopefully help others who are at similar or different points in theirs.

  7. Bravo! Ur blog is not related to vanilla femdom, but leans more to feminine femdom. As it should be 🙂

    • While I appreciate that you are probably saying that my blog is showing that a female dom’s actions don’t have to be shaped exclusively by her male submissive partner’s desires, or worse, a patriarchal view of femdom imposed by the media, what do you think is feminine about my style of dominance? I’ve been contemplating writing a post about this at some point. While my blog is about female domination, in an ideal world it wouldn’t really matter that I’m female. However, at the moment, female dom-male submissive couples have a unique set of issues that I want to address, thus said focus.

  8. tomio_of_delila

    From the bottom of my heart, I thank You for this. I have argued until I am blue in the face that there is an unofficial BDSM pecking order and submales tend to be lumped at the bottom of it. Even as dozens of submales have lined up behind me to attest to this, even more have told me I don’t know what I speak of. As if I were some kind of stranger to my own life.

    There is a lot I would like to say, but I’m afraid it’s a bit of a tangled mess. So I will just say, once again, thank You.

    • Hey, tomio_of_delila, you wrote:

      I have argued until I am blue in the face that there is an unofficial BDSM pecking order and submales tend to be lumped at the bottom of it. Even as dozens of submales have lined up behind me to attest to this, even more have told me I don’t know what I speak of. As if I were some kind of stranger to my own life.

      I want to hear more about this as it’s relevant to a presentation I’m slated to give on social status in the BDSM Scene later this year. If you’d be willing to email me your thoughts on the matter, I would greatly appreciate it. (You can find my email address behind a link at my website’s About page.) Thank you.

      • tomio_of_delila

        I stumbled across BDSM from the Male-Dom perspective. Hell, other than Gloria Brame, I could find no other perspective (this is something like a dozen years ago now). I looked at videos and photos of a person being totally owned and dominated and used for another’s pleasure…and it turned me on like nothing I had ever experienced. So, obviously, that means I’m a male dominant, right? I mean, if I like seeing women used for pleasure and hurt and subjected, then I must be a male dominant!

        Wrong. Damn was that line of thinking wrong. It destroyed my first marriage and drove me into a short-lived near-nightmare relationship before I landed in a very, very bad marriage with the understanding that I was Dominant. So why couldn’t I get excited about dominating someone? Why was it, when I looked at porn, I kept thinking, “God, I’d love to be that woman!”

        In the pits of depression, and in the hands of a rather lucky but bumbling marriage counselor, I discovered the issue wasn’t that I wanted to be a woman. It was that I wanted to be completely dominated, subjected, owned. After the second wife told me that she had no respect for me as a man, I decided I’d just wait out my life in a sort of sexual purgatory.

        The problem all along was that everything I’d seen showed a submissive man as either a worthless, sniveling snot or a faceless cog that could be easily substituted for another at any time. I’d never seen any sign of a submissive man like me – unique, multi-faceted, and proud of manhood. Submissive men in literature, in film, in art, and even in the porn they turn to in desperation are told in a thousand ways that they are wrong and they are worthless and they are broken. In a way, I feel my life has become revolutionary simply because I am a man and I am submissive. And I feel like, not only is the vanilla world against me, but the very people who preach tolerance and acceptance in the BDSM community really can’t figure out what to do with me, either.

        I hope that answers some questions, MayMay. And I hope it helps everyone understand why this post touched me so deeply. When I tried to explain this to my Mistress, I found myself in tears several times, because Her love and ownership of me has been so affirming. It is the first time in my life that I can say that I feel as if someone loves me because of who I am and not despite who I am. In other words, She has affirmed and made me understand my own value.

        Does this post mean more coming from a Femdom than it would to hear from MayMay? No. But it does mean something different. Coming from MayMay it would mean, “I feel like you do – this is so fucked up that it cannot be tolerated!” Coming from a Femdom, it means, “I feel like you do…and that’s why you are loved.”

  9. Thank you for this, I really like your article.

    I completely agree on your point about being a Dom just being the leader, and that acts do not make the Dom. I’m a male dominant who enjoys being fucked, even by women. Most people who know this about me find it confusing, especially in the BDSM community.

    Maybe one day we’ll get over this idea that fucking means in charge.

    Femdom is very weird for me, as it seems most femdom stuff is still geared to be pleasing to the men. It’s rare you see a woman dominating to get what she wants out of something, it’s just fulfilling another male fantasy.

    I know a couple where the male sub likes to be used as furniture and completely ignored by the woman. The woman does it, but actually finds it a bit boring. It’s always confused me, because surely if he’s a sub then that means he should want what SHE wants to do to him? Not this fucked up idea of how she’s supposed to treat him, just how he can please her.

    • Tab,

      I know a couple where the male sub likes to be used as furniture and completely ignored by the woman. The woman does it, but actually finds it a bit boring. It’s always confused me, because surely if he’s a sub then that means he should want what SHE wants to do to him? Not this fucked up idea of how she’s supposed to treat him, just how he can please her.

      I understand that it can often be difficult to distinguish when someone is doing something for their partner because they are a doormat and when they are doing something for their partner because doing what your partner likes is one way people maintain good relationships with their partners, and of course I can’t quite tell which the situation you describe is. It’s especially frustrating to tease this out in male submissive/female dominant relationships because so many of these relationships are infused by coercion outside of the bedroom and women are so often socialized to “be nice” while both men and women are socialized to treat sexuality as though it is some kind of God’s gift to the male partner when there should in fact be no such entitlement.

      That being said, however, I do want to point out that submission does not mean “he should want what SHE wants to do to him.” That may be a piece it for some people some of the time, but no one needs to make the mistake of believing submission is about sublimating a submissive person’s desires in favor of a dominant person’s, because then you’ve still just stolen the submissive person’s agency (regardless of their gender) by devaluing what they want and makes you more than a little bit of a stereotypical douche dom, and I won’t let anyone even remotely come close to doing that on a post that’s this good, like this one, without calling it out.

      • You make a very good point, and I’m sorry if I came across that way. My story is a little close to home as I know the female partner really didn’t enjoy it, and being her friend I am very biased in her favour.

        I personally find BDSM a time where both of you are trying to fulfil each others fantasies, so to have any sex where one person is uncomfortable is something I find distasteful. I get off on want- If someone doesn’t want me to do something or doesn’t want to do it to me I’m completely uninterested. I’m not in favour of sublimating a submissive person’s desire in favour of a doms, I’m in favour of everyone getting what they want, but never at the expense of the other person.

        It’s definitely an awkward one, so much so I’m pretty sorry I brought the topic up, as on one hand he’s just trying to fulfil a fantasy he has, but on the other hand is the fantasy just a product of the image of “ice queen” female domination?

  10. YES YES! Forever YES!

    I am sick to DEATH of the idea that there’s an Ultimate List of Dominant Activities. Or that to be a dominant woman means denying sex (unless it’s me penetrating, ’cause that’s masculine and powerful!) while to be a dominant man means using ones sub for sex all the time.

    Fuck masculinity being power up it’s hot, begging, needy little bum.

  11. Thank you so much for writing this post! It’s like you took all my thoughts about femdom and presented them in a way much clearer than I ever could. And the pictures of your boyfriend and the way you talk about him is just like how I’ve always longed to be thought of by my partner.

    I am a sub in my late 20s and have known that about myself since I was an adolescent. But until recently, I never attempted to find a domme to submit to precisely because of this “devaluation” you mention. It looked like all femdom relationships involved an utterly humiliated man and a bitchy domme who actually seems to loathe him for being so submissive.

    I am sexually submissive, but I do consider having self-respect pretty important for any individual. And being humiliated and barely tolerated by a woman who seems to hate you, just so you could satisfy your kink seemed like something that would absolutely shatter any self-respect I had for myself. So I tried to keep that side of me in the realm of fantasy because I never thought I could find a woman capable of loving me and being my domme at the same time.

    For a time, I even wondered if it was actually possible for a woman to be attracted to a submissive man. And the women I received attention from were all “vanilla” (I put that in quotes because even in vanilla relationships, the man is expected to lead), and I was just not attracted to them. I even wished plenty of times that I were “normal”. I am fairly assertive in other areas of my life, and I wished (and tried) to be more assertive in my love life too, but it just felt fake.

    And I partially agree with your boyfriend’s opinion on pro-dommes. I think they satisfy some people and that’s great for them, but going to a pro-domme would have never worked for me. I didn’t want to just “be beaten up” and harshly treated by some girl. The kind of femdom I was looking for was far more filled with love and romance than any pro-domme could sell.

    Eventually, I did manage to venture out and look for a lady who’d wish to accept my submission to her. And I found her. 🙂 Our relationship is still in the early stages, but she has been very kind and loving, alongwith being firm and authoritative. But, I never believed I would find anyone like that. My relationship and your blog give me hope for the other femdom-inclined women and men out there. I hope they don’t end up with the bizarre opinions I did and find good partners.

    Sorry for going on so long about myself, but this post really resonated with me.

  12. After having read all the comments on this blog so far, i find it amazing, if not disturbing, that i rarely hear the voices of those who, like me, r opposed to humiliation, degradation, and dehumanizing of males within the realm of femdom, on blogs where submissiveness is pictured as a weakness, as inferior, as……well, as something despicable and yet to thrive on. Why don’t u people open ur mouth there, and let these idiots and parasites know, that femdom is not simply a derivation of patriarchal vanilla sex, or the next porn outlet?

    Come on, be brave, go out there, and share ur views in places where they’re not welcome, where it is not safe to do so, where they will eat u alive. Yeah right. Don’t be afraid of paper tigers. Tell them!

    • Ayesha, you’re barking up the wrong tree for many, many reasons:

      i find it amazing, if not disturbing, that i rarely hear the voices of those who, like me, r opposed to humiliation, degradation, and dehumanizing of males within the realm of femdom, on blogs where submissiveness is pictured as a weakness, as inferior, as……well, as something despicable and yet to thrive on. Why don’t u people open ur mouth there, and let these idiots and parasites know, that femdom is not simply a derivation of patriarchal vanilla sex, or the next porn outlet?

      First of all, some men who are submissive and women who are dominant do enjoy “degradation” and “humiliation” and “dehumanization.” I am among a group of men who enjoy this some of the time, when my emotionality is honored in the act and the individual acts themselves are not tarnished by abusive over-influence from the overculture’s preconceptions.

      Yes, the overwhelming majority of people who you describe as “idiots and parasites” are uncritically and unthinkingly going about the motions they believe constitute a form of play they should want, perhaps because they have seen no alternative, but that does not mean they are all victims of false consciousness. Many, of them—even including those who may be victims of false consciousness—quite adamantly and sometimes even eloquently express they also actually want it.

      Their play is not invalid, and I do not I do not think it is accurate or helpful to view those people as parasites, although I agree most of them are idiots.

      Instead, they are more like hordes of walking undead, unable or unwilling to examine their own desires and unable to break free of the pervasive ideas that you and I find so deeply distasteful. But in suggesting that their personal play, rather than their monopoly over their representation of how we would like to play is itself the problem, you are in effect suggesting your own form of sexual fascism that I will never support and that I have spent my entire adult’s life’s work fighting against when it comes to male sexuality.

      I find myself now perhaps strangely defending those whose over-representation hurt me. Perhaps this is my own personal BDSM Voltaire moment: I disagree with how they play, but I will defend to the death their right to play that way.

      Thankfully, they need little defending because they have congregated in such numerous hordes. So if you want to help, Ayesha, then point out to those idiots that their One True Way, all-or-nothing speak is laughable and insulting and ridiculous, but do not do so with all-or-nothing speak such as you have just done in your comment, because that, too, is laughable and insulting and ridiculous.

    • I concur with maymay. I actually regularly humiliate and dehumanize my submissive. He becomes a sexual object and a vessel in which to pour my piss. However, there is a line that must not be crossed. He enjoys these activities and the fact that I can engage in them with him only gives me more respect for him, not less. I wouldn’t dream of keeping him in a perpetual state of humiliation due to his submissiveness, and instead try to cultivate the opposite – he should be proud of that ability.

    • tomio_of_delila

      With all due respect, STFU. You know nothing of my life, and therefore you have no ability, much less right, to describe how I should spend it.

      Beyond that, I question the utility of forcing one’s opinion on people who are not interested in it and are not going to be swayed by it. The truth of the matter is that those who do so simply want to replace one kind of tyranny with another. Since I prefer pluralism and freedom, I have to oppose it.

      I have spent no small part of my time building a group at Fetlife where all forms of male submission are honored. I’ve seen dozens of young submissives, and a few Dominants as well, stumble in and learn a thing or two. And the first lesson is: There is no “right” way to do this submission stuff. There is only a way that feels right to the person who is submitting and ways that do not feel right. Submission in men is as varied as any other human interest or talent.

      Again, with all due respect, you have no right to make demands and paint everyone with a broad brush. Doing so will only alienate those who should have been your allies and it will not win over one “enemy.” Ever.

  13. Apparently i made a mistake. Ur femdom isn’t feminine femdom. No humiliation etc there.

    As for this maymay person? I heard this kind of babbling many times b4. It’s vanilla to the bone. Good stuff for never ending conversations on the couch tho, while happily consuming cheese and wine, and enjoying the support of likeminded babblers.

    So, excuse my intrusion, and never mind what i was trying to get across.

    Oh, one last thing. Voltaire was great with words indeed, but, contrary to popular belief, not brave enough to live up to them. And he certainly never died from defending that ‘right’. Check herstory rightly, and u’ll find proof of this. Anyway, let me know when u r called to the task maymay, so i can cheer for u, when u give ur life for that ‘right’. Cos without any doubt, u will not cowardly follow in the footsteps of monsieur Arouet, and firmly stand tall when the bell tolls for u!

    • Apparently i made a mistake. Ur femdom isn’t feminine femdom. No humiliation etc there.

      Careful, Ayesha, you’re beginning to reek of the stench you deride. When you see fit to tell Delving into Deviance what “her femdom” is or is not, you’ve become your own stated enemy.

      As for this maymay person? I heard this kind of babbling many times b4. It’s vanilla to the bone.

      Clearly, you do not know me. Listen closely because I’ll only say this once: we could be allies unless you turn me against you—and I would not hesitate to take either position, given a useful reason for one over the other.

    • tomio_of_delila

      Who made you the one to decide what is feminine and what isn’t?

      But I do have to thank you for the laugh when you called maymay out as vanilla. That’s so ignorant that I may shoot milk out of my nose after the fact.

      And that’s a really nice straw-man about Voltaire. I don’t ever remember anyone anywhere claiming that he was actual killed for what he said. It doesn’t take much knowledge about history to look immediately above where you’re writing and determine what a person said. I’d say that it’s lazy, but there is ample evidence that your prime motivator is self-aggrandizement.

      If I sound critical, it’s because people like you are just as stultifying and damaging to men’s psyches as anything tossed out by Kink, Inc. At least they know what they are and don’t pretend to be on the side of male submissives while knifing their spiritual back because they don’t measure up to a non-existent rating scale you have developed.

    • I took a brief look at your blog and agree with the main gist of many of your posts (i.e. The ridiculousness of female supremacy and power). I would like it if you would explain your point rather than just telling me that I’m not in your club. Through reasoned argument we might be able to learn something from each other. I engage in humiliation play. This does not come from any belief that my sub is inferior to me or that he ‘deserves’ it. It is merely a transgressive act by which we are both aroused. To me this isn’t very different from pain play which I believe you do engage in? While from the outside it can look like the Dom is viewing the sub as less than themselves, it is really through mutual love and respect that both parties are able to enjoy such acts and feel closer and more bonded as a result of them.

  14. I wanted to add another voice to the appreciation of the thoughts you have expressed here.

    When I started my blog a few years ago, part of the reason was because I was saddened and frustrated by the lack of representation I saw of *my* idea of female dominance, with healthy relationships born from love and passion, where both parties are able and free to be themselves, where the submissive is adored and valued and powerful, where his beauty makes his dominant weak with want.

    I find the overwhelmingly stereotypical ‘rules of true femdommery’ profoundly depressing and love finding people who show that it really and truly doesn’t have to be that way and *isn’t* that way for so many.

    Thanks for the post.

    Ferns

  15. Also here thanks to mamay’s signal boost! This is a lovely entry and I am so glad to have read it. I agree with you so much about the devaluation of male submission. I have nothing but affection for the men who have been willing to submit to me (Admittedly it’s only been a few) and am often saddened by those who cannot fathom that I would value them and what they have to offer. Thank you for putting it out there.

  16. By sharing this, I hope to inspire other submissives to realize that they too should be valued for who they are and what they have to offer.

    I have this hypothesis that for the most part, submissive men, by buying into the Old Guard/Gorean (Old Gordian?) mindset perpetuated by the mainstream BDSM scene players, are the cause of their own devaluation.
    Look on any kink-oriented web forum. A woman pops in for some discussion, and she is immediately deluged with offers of submission from men who don’t know her. What’s even funnier is that women get this even if they don’t declare themselves as dominant.

    But the deeper issue is that we (culturally speaking) associate “submission” with feminine traits. We already have descriptions for men displaying such traits: Gay, faggot, queer, sissy, and a handful of others that escape me at the moment. That’s right, when straight men (and at times, even gay men) want to debase or denigrate another man with less-than-manly attributes, they refer to him as if he is a homosexual. Is that because women are undervalued, or is it because we have no idea what to do (from a sociological perspective0 with men who dont’ act like men?

    • Interesting. I think this touches on two things: 1) there is a difference between submission and bottoming which is often not made, and 2) submissive men often have trouble asserting their own value because of shame as well as others’ expectations. The first point I bring up because the men who proposition women they don’t know are really bottoms rather than submissives. There’s nothing wrong with that except that it makes it harder for the guys who have a genuine desire to submit to an individual partner (rather than an ideal) to stand out amongst a pack of men who call themselves submissive. Bottoming however isn’t seen as a valid option in ‘the community’ and thus is much more rarely discussed than submission.

      My second point touches on the gender issues you bring up. I think that both of your options are true – women are undervalued and society doesn’t know what to do with ‘men who don’t act like men’. I think it is a struggle for many men to be proud of themselves initially in their submission because they grew up in a society that equates submission with femininity and weakness. Overcoming this is a challenge. In my own relationship we like to play around with gender not because being more feminine makes a man more submissive or being more masculine makes a woman more dominant, but rather because shaking up gender and playing with it is a way of unlearning society’s dictates and finding the best of both worlds for each of us.

      • “The first point I bring up because the men who proposition women they don’t know are really bottoms rather than submissives…….Bottoming however isn’t seen as a valid option in ‘the community’ and thus is much more rarely discussed than submission.”

        No, and yes.

        No, my experience (and I identify mostly as a sadist/Top) is definitely not that these men are bottoms, which I at least equate with submission to pain, or masochism. I don’t know whether they are submissives either, but bottoms or masochists they are not.

        Yes. My experience is that masochists are rarer than hen’s teeth.

        Rarer yet are masochists willing to love and be loved and maybe also serve a bit, with a straight backbone.

        In short, I haven’t come across any one like that and have all but given up.

  17. I followed to this post via Maymay, and what a post it was.

    This is exactly the kind of thing that I have been battling as a dominant woman. A week into being 32, I yet again find myself single because of that age old chesnut of not being ‘dominant’ or ‘good’ enough for a submissive I cared about. Time and time again it seems that if you openly adore and love your sub and want them to experience things beyond the stereotypical abuse, then you are obviously not a ‘proper’ dominant who dresses up and abuses men. Me, if someone chooses to submit to be.. ah,it is just so emotional for me, in a good way. I do not feel that they are offering me a gift, but it feels very special indeed.
    It feels quite sad that at my age I am occasionally feeling like there is no submissive who can both offer and *gasp* receive intense affection. still, I do live in hope that I won’t be a subless dominant until the end of my days..once I find that special one for me, he will get the moon from the sky if I can give it to him. Any day, any time.

    • Yeah it can be quite difficult sometimes. I’m extremely sweet in my way. I like pampering my sub on occasion. Just the other night I even massaged his feet! It’s annoying because that kind of thing wouldn’t really make anyone bat an eye if it were a male dom and female sub, but somehow if it’s a male sub they are supposed to be scourned all the time. It just doesn’t work for me in a loving long-term relationship. Which is not to say that D/s doesn’t work for me, just that I’m going to do it my way and sometimes that includes massaging my sub’s feet. Anyways, I wish you the best in finding the man you desire.

    • I am sorry to hear this, Laney. All I can say is that, a decade older that You, I have found a Dominant who is wonderfully sensual and loving. I hope that it doesn’t take You another decade, but I do hope You find the someone You are looking for.

  18. I know I’m very late to this party, but I wanted to add my thanks too. I wrote a response to a response to this post, but it took me two more days to find my way back here to the apparent originator.

    Thank you thank you thank you. The thought of anyone being devalued is horrific, but especially the amazingly strong and sexy male submissives I have come to know and love and cherish and respect and thoroughly enjoy fucking.

    • Thanks! Latecomers are always welcome. It’s great to see the ripple that’s been made on the internet. I hope it continues and becomes a big wave.

  19. I came across your blog and was wondering if it was okay for me to quote part of this post? I will link it back to you. 🙂

  20. I must say it’s so good to read a post that rejects the stereotypical idea about BDSM. Like you say, the stereotype states that a domme should always act like an ice queen dressed in leather and guys should always play the role as a strapped up guy that accepts and enjoys the pain she inflicts on her. This is the stereotype presented to us by porn, and I think that male submission could have been enjoyed by lot more couples if expressing the nuances of domination and submission.

    Myself and my girlfriend for example, aren’t into inflicting pain at all, neither does certain types of dressing or strapping each other up do particularly much for us. But it is the mental aspect, that she’s in control that matters.

  21. Fantastic post. Pretty much took the garbled rant I had going on in my head and made it into a coherent post.

  22. Best writen opinion on the F/m subject I have ever seem. You have exactly described the proper concept of a realtionship between a submissive man and his dominant Lover Lady.
    Thank you so very much,
    Kipling

  23. I couldn’t have said it better, I have many men that expect me to just jump in and do what they ‘expect’… i have always been one to take my time, learn and share with the person. Learning who they are says ALOT about what one might like. In doing that i earn trust, and they earn mine.

  24. Thank you. You have helped crystallise my vision of what I want to be and what I want from my D/s relationship. I’m very new and I think I fell a little into the expectations Trap.

    I’m very late to the party 😁

  25. great thoughts here and honest reactions…..my Goddess and moi (pet) are in line with the ideals mentioned above….carry on!

  26. the randomizer (FetLife)

    As a male who likes to submit, I want to thank you for this post. Well written!

  27. the randomizer (FetLife)

    Oops, post above should be signed “the randalizer”. Damned auto correction.

  28. Warning: brain drain/dissertation length writing below:

    I suspect the supposed ratio imbalance and worthlessness of men subs probably stems from many of the same causes as vanilla prostitution. Men in authority (even if only indirectly, like maybe running websites where women who call all men worthless congregate, with financial incentives to get women to try/continue to participate, e.g. ‘free money from sickos who aren’t real men’ given to the women by the organizer), the women’s own ideas about what dominant means twisted to extremes, out of ignorance or lack of any other frame of reference, the fact that both for them and any men involved in running it, the path of least resistance, most gain, and least effort is to perpetuate the whip-wielding stereotype.

    The (right or wrong) parallels to prostitution – thinking that dominant means prostitute with a whip, as a means to legitimize it in their own mind and make it seem at least as acceptable, i.e. a cure for possible cognitive dissonance. In other words the industrialization and objectification of something that can be absolutely focused and personal, and the exchange becomes ‘money for satisfying a fetish’, with little or no affection, commitment, little trust based on emotions and not contractual business obligation. Not what it can be, ‘I find you mentally and psychologically stimulating, and by the way also attractive enough that after that movie we both like ends, if you want to play on the couch, I have no problem with you being on top, as long as it has been discussed and there is mutual consent. Suspect a lot of the shame/stigma comes from this too – because ‘decent normal’ people are supposed to have no need for prostitution, by extension needing something that is as bad or worse is unacceptable to men who like patriarchy or women who haven’t thought outside the box.

    Those bible references to men being ‘the head’ were written by men 2000 years ago, and the attitude persist and flourish. Even if you don’t entirely believe in flipping the status quo 180 degrees around, what is wrong with meeting halfway (as long as there is mutual consent, society should not impose who is in charge)? Can you picture what would happen if the IRS said that women can file as ‘head of household’ not just if they’re single mothers, but even if they’re married or have boyfriends who live with them. The real dime a dozen are men who think taking an unfair (patriarchal) dynamic and flipping it makes it better, and the women who for whatever reasons (financial gain?) enable this. I don’t mean provide a service for which he has no outlet, this maybe be good or not, and has to be evaluated individually. I mean telling him he’s worthless because you value taking his money more than anything else about him.

    I’ll finish with a short idea: if you are in a couple, and either one of you knows a woman who is even very remotely curious about kink, or simply open minded and may simply say no thanks rather than calling you names and running away, approach her (probably better done by the woman) with the idea of observing your gentler scene in safety (your place or hers). If it progresses to her participating, even very very mildly, suggest/attend a munch, look for a possible guy (someone she is attracted to, or you think she might be). If they hit it off, you’ve just decreased the repressed puritan/victorian people in the world by two, congrats. If they don’t, as long as she isn’t creeped out/repelled, you’ve done sub guys a huge favor, by changing the math moving one woman from ignorance or ‘ew’ to ‘if it’s what we both want, it’s nobody’s business but ours’. Also you might move a guy from ‘need fetish delivery system’ to ‘it’s mutual and has to be founded on connection and relationship’ (i.e. closer to what most women say they want, even from vanilla partners). And move a woman from ‘I hate playing by his rules or being alone’ to ‘I found a guy that is confident enough to let me make some of the rules, or at least compromise’.

  29. very helpful. thanks a lot for this article.

  30. I haven’t read all the comments, but I would like to congratulate the writer of the article; I could have written it myself! Thanks. Xx

  31. The sad thing is, and I’ve seen this from personal experence, submissive males are often forced to boycott women, and no longer view them as suitable sexual partners, due to their treatment in female dominated spaces.

    After all, which would you rather be – a “worthless, dime a dozen, degenerate submissive” in female centered communities….

    OR

    A beautiful, loved, and valued member of the gay community, that acctually cherishes you for your submissive nature.

    The answer is very simple – and male subs quickly learn that if they wished to be treated with any amount of love, or dignity (and not just a disposible degenerate with a fetish)……then female-male pair bondings must be EXCLUSIVELY ruled out.

    Go where the love is, after all, go where you will be appreciated. After all, part of sexual preference CAN be influenced by social factors.

    Its just very sad to me that submissive boys so rarely find what they’re looking for, and are forced to reevaluate their sexual preferences, since they often can’t find what they’re looking for emotionally in dominant women.

    That’s why articles like this gives me hope. To much of BDSM is just portrayed as whips and chains and humilation.

    While that IS part of the fun, without a mutual relationship of love and respect as its basis, it looses much of its charm.

    Articles, like yours how that it IS possible – but like you said, its only possible once we discard the emotionally distancing labels of “ice queen vs worthless slave”.

    Honnestly, to me, those are just temporary roles in role play, AT BEST.

    Living your life strictly as those characters, always seemed kind of equally empty and emotionally vacant to me.

    But, hey – maybe that’s just me. 🙂

    ……

    Anyway, loved your article. Thank you for painting a much needed alternative picture to what a BDSM relationship can acctually be like.

    From the look of things, its very much needed.

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