What Is Domination, and what is D/s?
It is clear that throughout history those who are subjugated and forced into submission are truly denigrated as human beings. When human rights are oppressed people are robbed of their personal dignity, identity and worth.
In a Dominant/submissive relationship however, the submissive has chosen her Master of her own free will.
Although her Master does "make use" of her, he does so with her permission and always endeavors to interact with her in such a way that her needs and desires are met in the process.
Certainly there are moments when the submissive has fear or doubt, those emotions are brought about only to make her feel her submissive instincts and to allow her to experience the ultimate level of sexual excitement and pleasure.
If at any time she has negative feelings about the ways in which her Master chooses to use her or she begins to confuse her submissive persona with her "real" and "true" identity as a worthy, highly respected and beloved person, she must communicate those feelings to her Master so that they can be dealt with in a satisfactory way. It is never My desire to do anything to endanger the mental well-being, self-image, or sense of My counterpart's value to herself or to her Master.
Just as there are many men who like to think of themselves as Dominant yet have no real talent or ability to accept the responsibilities of a Master. There are also many women who have instincts and may think of themselves as submissive women, but who are completely unable to assume the role of a sub.
I have observed many forms of Dom/sub behavior in nearly 30 years of study and practice. I hope this information will help a beginning Dom or sub find an area to identify with, and perhaps help them to understand various forms of D/s behavior.
It is My opinion that Dominant Males fit into three Major Categories, but like everything involving Human behavior, Thoughts, emotions and behaviors can exhibit many combinations and overlaps. I categorize all D/s behavior patterns as Authoritarian, Democratic, or Egalitarian and each type of Master has a submissive counterpart.
The Authoritarian Master:
is one who "rules" with absolute power and total control and allows no questioning of His demands. The only recourse the sub has is a safe word or sometimes a few agreed upon limitations. These are truly Master/slave relationships. This Master attracts a submissive counterpart who wishes to be totally and strictly controlled. This D/s relationship usually involves total, surrender, Mentally, Emotionally and Physically, and frequently involves S&M activities. There is no doubt that force and coercion add excitement and play a part in the fantasies of Both Master and sub. The Authoritarian Master is usually very skilled in the use of His symbolic tools and these "toys" are often highly crafted, and intricate in design. His submissive partner is thoroughly trained and places great value on enduring her punishment. I have found it to be a profound and sobering experience to witness an Authoritarian "scene" and some refer to this type as the only "real" D/s.
I must admit that some of the strongest 24/7 relationships I have seen in D/s involve this type of Partnership. They fully understand the concept of D/s, relinquishing of power and the wielding of absolute control and some live it strictly and with great elegance. I think that some individuals feel they were born this way and fall into this easily and comfortably, despite the appearance of brutality.
The Democratic Master:
Controls by Agreement. The relationship is a Bargain with Contracts, Discussions, Limits, Conditions, Safe words, Times, Places, all discussed and agreed upon. Punishment is symbolic and evocative and is meted out, when rules are not followed. Rewards are given when exemplary performance is displayed. A submissive who is attracted to a Democratic Master may enjoy the prescribed conditions and limitations, but often, this type of submissive is feisty, mischievous, or spoiled and enjoys pressing and challenging the limits and rules as part of the "game". The submissive will not actually submit but enjoys role playing and pretending. The term "Topping from the Bottom" is used to describe the sub who has some aspect of her personality that wishes to take control of the scene or has doubts and fears about her Master. The rules are devised as protection for those who enjoy the "play" of D/s interaction but may have little knowledge of what D/s really is on an intellectual, philosophical and physical level. It can serve as a safe course to other forms of D/s, or for learning, especially among those who are doing this for the first time with someone new.
Surprisingly, I have found strongly S&M oriented individuals here as well as in the Authoritarian. As long as the D/s partnership is based upon agreement and is pleasurable to both, I consider it a democratic relationship. I have observed that these partners form the weakest relationships and bonds unless they progress beyond Democratic control.
The Egalitarian Master:
Controls by Teaching, Guiding and Leading. The True genetic "Alpha" Male usually falls into this category and His counterpart attends to Him because she truly loves Him and wishes to please. Master and submissive frequently enjoy exploring the philosophical concepts and psychological mechanisms of the D/s lifestyle and the bonding of minds may be as important as the physical pleasures that are evoked.
An egalitarian Master knows that when he finds an appropriate submissive, things will happen as a natural progression of their interaction. It will not be necessary to constantly repeat instructions or force a particular behavior or submission to occur.
An Egalitarian submissive understands the concept of respect and she adores her Master and submits sweetly, with little instruction. The desires instilled by His knowledge, skills, and emotional connection, let her embrace submission gratefully and lovingly and her Master's pleasure arises from her willing and enthusiastic submission.
Both partners "get it", and very little, "training" is required. Creative and enthusiastic initiatives are an integral part of the relationship and communication or a short lesson is all that is needed to assure a proper response as both partners intuitively know what the other needs during and after interaction.
Egalitarian partners usually do not engage in heavy S&M activities and any pain that is given and received is a form of sensual stimulation and these partners can form the most intimate relationships and often enjoy many years together. The fact that these things come forth naturally and without the need for orders or rules is affirmation and a source of pride, satisfaction and loving. Usually the egalitarian, D/s relationship is not readily apparent to their "vanilla" peers as egalitarian partners can subtly integrate the concepts and interactions of D/s into real life and do not need many "rules" like the Authoritarian or Democratic types.
My experience has shown that many D/s partners are confused and do not understand the underlying instincts that trigger D/s desires and attachments. Each Dominant and each submissive yearns for and seeks the joys of D/s and each partnership has it's own psycho-dynamic. Some aspects of each type of Master may be found in any Dominant male and some aspects of each type are in any submissive. The permutations are endless, but the emotional rewards and physical pleasures of D/s behavior are not simply there for the taking. Understanding the primitive evolutionary roots of these behaviors on an intellectual level is fine, but the Rituals, Symbolism, Body language and Physical skills must be learned and practiced as well. I truly believe the only when both partners are committed to the exploration of their souls will the fulfilling emotions and joyous physical pleasures of D/s manifest themselves to the fullest extent.