‘You want me, but you can’t have me. You’re not worthy,’ whispers the latex-clad dominatrix stereotype with her over-lined red lips.
Her power stems in the fact she is an object of visual attraction. She is perfectly unattainable and therefore all the more desirable – a goddess on a pedestal to be worshipped and appeased.
More often than not, she is passive up on that pedestal, like all statues. She doesn’t… conquer. She doesn’t command respect, merely lust.
To be clear, this isn’t a critique of porn. I am very much aware that performance is difficult, and I have ample respect for pros and actresses of all calibres. It is, after all, not the fault of pornography that some sad people confuse it for reality.
Nonetheless, it is a narrative which has steeped its way into the very concept of the foundation of female domination.
That narrative commonly shows up around a few of the kinks associated with femdom – for instance, chastity, cuckolding, and a variety of ‘worship’ kinks. Scroll through any feed labelled ‘femdom’ and chances are, you will find swathes of generically provocative images of women, coyly dangling keys over their ample cleavage, with captions detailing impracticably nefarious chastity blackmail plots.
Don’t get me wrong – there is nothing inherently wrong with any of that.
Plenty of women enjoy that kind of dynamic. It just so happens I am not one of them.
I will make no secret of the fact that, when I first started exploring D/s as a teenager, I thought I had to be. It was an uncomfortable fit. I couldn’t reconcile the idea that my power was based on someone’s sexual attraction to me with what might be termed my ‘inner domme’ – that set of feelings and instincts which are a natural part of me, but which are enhanced and fully brought to fore by space.
By her understanding, I am a force. A predator. I am to be feared and respected for who and what I am.
I am not some latex-covered carrot to entice someone into obedience.
This dissonance was exacerbated by the fact most fetish wear is restrictive and uncomfortable. While that is a price I am happy to pay where I want to dress that I way, it was the idea that this was *necessary* I just couldn’t stomach.
Of course, it turned out I didn’t have to.
I soon came to realise that the kind of submissives who would offer me a fulfilling dynamic had no issue submitting to me as a person – I could wear a dressing gown and be just as effective.
Where I wanted to elicit a particular reaction, I could play to their individual tastes. It was the realisation I was under no obligation to which was quite a relief.
I thought that I had exhausted all controversy around (and interest in) the subject, until I met B.
I had never really experienced visual attraction quite so viscerally.
As our dynamic developed, this aesthetic appeal turned into something more possessive. An immense sense of satisfaction, pleasure even, flowing from the half-thought, half-felt fact that I own him – he is mine, mine to do with as I please. He is my toy, my property, my possession.
The desire to run my hands over him, touch him, grab him was something which slowly flared over time. Nowadays, I exercise my right to grope him at any time, invade his mouth with my fingers or tongue daily.
But that took time.
And that isn’t because he would have been reticent to make himself available to me that way – I have yet to see him so much as flinch when I grope him, let alone move away, no matter what his mood or state of mind. It’s that it has rather been something I’ve grown into.
A slow dawning realisation, which finally hit me about a year into our dynamic, one hand running over the outline of his latex shorts, the other pinning his hands – it’s not just that I didn’t enjoy being the object of desire. I enjoyed making someone else the object of desire. Him, specifically.
The restrictive nature of fetish wear suddenly had a new appeal. It was something to inflict on him for my gratification. Pretty to look at, restricted and uncomfortable, you say?
The day I outfit him in a full latex catsuit is imminent. The chances of me donning one ever again are somewhere between the likelihood of hell freezing over and the probability that the UK will have competent political leadership in the foreseeable future.
My tastes have developed, hurray for me. So, what’s my point?
Quite simply, that we should divorce the idea of who should be the object of desire from gender and dominance and submission.
Some women enjoy being the object of desire; some dommes enjoy weaponising that. Equally, some dommes like me would rather enjoy having a sub who they can objectify to their hearts content. I think quite a few men out there, submissive or not, would enjoy being the object of desire too and that’s something we’re missing out on as a society.
Male lingerie shouldn’t be limited to feminisation. Let’s give boys the right to be groped.
And for the love of all that’s green, let’s stop assuming female dominance is based on a sub’s sexual attraction. For the dommes who choose to weaponise it, appearance is but one tool in their arsenal. For the rest of us, it has nothing to do with why our subs submit to us.
Let’s stop reducing female dominance to the superficial.