Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Sex, Money, Power - The Secular Holy Trinity

Recently received a letter from a submissive male, who was attracted by my being asexual because that meant, to him, that this D/s thing I do is natural and innate and somehow more "pure" because it's separate from the need for sex.

I'm sure that does a disservice to the many fully sexual Dominant women who also have a natural and innate need for D/s but who also need sex. However I guess in my case it's easier to see where the one leaves off and the other begins.

The ways of power and control are to have: desirability or money or knowledge that others want. Using these three concepts to gain what the Dominant one wants and desires.

I struggle with expressing Dominance because a lot of the ways to express that are about sexual Dominance. These are the scenarios I've seen:

  • I get sexual pleasure, you are denied, until I feel like it.
  • I tease you, and deny you, and eventually when you are really good I may decide to grace you with a fulfilment of your desires.
  • I am clothed but you are naked, you yearn for what is underneath the clothes and hope to someday be found worthy to see that. (The expectation is that someday the clothes DO come off? I think? And there is wild hot sex?)
  • I see MY sexual needs met while yours are unfulfilled except as I see fit,  in a hot little dance of "will she let me come today? What about tomorrow?"
  • I take and use you for my pleasure, not caring if you get pleasure from it also even though I'm aware that you do. You are just a dildo, a robot toy to please me.
  • I don't get sexual pleasure from you, so I tease and deny you while gaining sexual pleasure from other men who please me more than you ever could. But it turns you on to see me pleased even if someone else does the pleasing, so we are both fulfilled even though the relationship may look odd from the outside.
But with me, tomorrow never comes. I can't be pleased. I don't want other men to please me because none of them do either. I was given a dildo once as a gift and it was sitting in a box for 10 years. No joke. I didn't need it and completely forgot I even had it.

To be sexually desirable is a source of power, but only when you use it. I think. Denial in the short term increases power but in the long term can cause unstable frustrations that can turn against the Dominant.

If you have money, you can use that to gain power over other people by manipulation of their desires for good things, or even for necessary things. But in a relationship dynamic of Domination, one partner having and possibly withholding resources could very easily be abused. Also, if I were to demand that a man give me all his money so that I have that power over him also, it brings up the archetype of the Greedy FinDomme - and his friends and family are more likely to be concerned about my fingers in his wallet than about my beating him!

If you have knowledge, you can use that to impress or influence, or to outright control a situation. Here, the tools of pain count as a way to achieve control, because of the knowledge of how to use the tools to achieve states of being in the submissive.

So here I am, desirable but not desiring, sensual rather than sadistic, and unwilling to take the step of demanding money because that's a whole HUGE can of worms I don't even want to deal with. Maybe I should deal with it instead of being scared of social backlash.

So what can I do in these three main concepts to gain the upper hand of power exchange in a relationship?

Desirability and Denial - this type of play seems to require occasional release for the man. His longing to actually have sex with me will be intensified by chastity. I could allow him to relieve his needs occasionally by masturbation, perhaps a specific vagina-like toy. Plus, that he would not be pleasing me sexually would mean he has less of an intimate surrender to MY pleasure than in a relationship with a sexual Dominant. Here, the relationship will be seen as less valid than a sexual one however. My fear in a teasing, chastity relationship would be that he couldn't be trusted to not push to have sex with me, especially if I'm doing everything I can to drive him wild. I don't even like kissing, how weird is that? Where is the line for control, when men have crossed that line so many times? Would it be harder or easier in chastity, if I could lock away the penis as a punishment if he tried to push me at all? Can I as an asexual being, have a relationship with a sexual being and have my partner happy in my inactivity? Michael Taylor said something on Good Men Project which gives me hope that's possible:
True love is a function of the heart and mind and has absolutely nothing to do with your penis. If you really want to make love, leave your penis in your pants and learn to take out your heart and share it with your mate.

Monetary Control - this would immensely help me to achieve the dynamic I'm looking for. The man with a good job coming home, handing over his paycheck and stripping down to an apron to make us both dinner, then cleaning up and bringing me a hot cup of chocolate as I watch my favorite show. The man as a barrier for me keeping Patriarchy's ugliness out of my home. However, this is an area of self-identity almost MORE touchy than sex. Plus well, it seems greedy doesn't it? I'm not doing anything to deserve that, or am I? He would not have choice of what to buy, what to wear, because I would be doing the buying and choosing, with his money. I find this hot, however the stigma against Financial Domination (and the language used on the sites when I looked it up) just isn't the dynamic I'm looking for. How do I get this dynamic without stumbling on the money pigs and humiliation fetish that I'm just not into? My advantage here is that yes I do really enjoy dressing up and buying shoes, all those typical Plastic Fetish Barbie activities. So his family might understand that he enjoys me looking pretty and enjoys spending money on me. Do they need to know that his cheque goes into MY account and he has only access to a small amount for lunches and errands? Perhaps the right submissive would be worth that kind of trouble.

Knowledge is Power - here, the willingness to inflict pain helps place the submissive more easily into subspace. When they endure pain for you, it makes you more valuable because they have already sacrificed comfort and achieved a state of bliss through the pain they suffered for you. I'm fairly confident that a more sensual journey can be equally intense, however that is playtime of a scene, not the daily intense intimacy of a quickie before bed (but he can't have an orgasm). The best use for knowledge is daily training, things to drop the man quickly into a peaceful, relaxed-yet-excited, submissive mindset. This is possible, but again more difficult without the tools of pain, sex or monetary control.

Logistics. Are. A. Bitch.

Then again, none of this is worth even trying if the man doesn't engage my respect and admiration, and interest in his mind.

I'm too used to being alone. Too much reliance on keeping myself entertained in my own company. I want to be loved, but do I even have love to give? Would I be able to take the time to maintain intimacy on a daily basis with one who serves me well? Even one I found interesting initially?

Would serving me be too boring and vanilla without the "standard" tools of the Dominatrix, pain and sex?


  1. Since my letter has inspired you those interesting thoughts, I think it's just normal for me to take the time to add my 2 cents, in my submissive point of view.

    So the big question you are asking yourself is : how to exert your dominance on a submissive partner when the 3 tools you could use (sex, money and knowledge/pain), don't really fit your personality or your specific needs? Here's how I see it :

    1- Sex

    The "tease & denial" situation you describe would probably fit better with a couple who's into games and roleplaying. I think it can be achieved, without you being sexually engaged if you don't want to, in a much more subtle way. Mostly through affection. Do you enjoy cuddling? In the end of the day, when he has cleaned the dishes and all of his tasks are completed, you could cuddle on the couch while watching a movie, as any couple would do. No sex will be expected, of course. The rules will be clear about where his hands can go or not. You don't need more complicated tease & denial scenarios than that. He will end up being incredible excited and desirous of you. You could let him give you back massages or foot massages once in a while, if it's something you like. But the result in the end will be the same : the more he desires you sexually, the more he'll be willing to submit to you and do everything you want.

    And when you feel he can't take it anymore and he's becoming too tensed, you can allow him to masturbate. Your participation is not even required if you don't want to.

    Now, could you trust him not to push to have sex with you? This is definitely an issue you'll have to deal with, no matter if you're with the best sub in the world. Of course, for that, you need a truly obedient sub, one that is malleable enough and who'll never let his impulses take control. I think it can be achieved with long term training. There has to be consequences when he crosses the line and let his hands slide to far and is too insistant. Your idea of the chastity cage is excellent. Well, the consequence could be that he'll have to sleep alone on the couch with a chastity cage. And there has to be rewards. For a whole week, he's been totally obedient and has been able to cuddle without asking once for sex? Well, you can allow him to masturbate. Or you could allow him a moment of more intimacy together. For example : a shower together or a night of sleep naked under the bed sheets. Allow him to touch your body a little more than usual...

    Anyway, sexuality is so much more than penetration. You would do a great wonder to the male specy if you could teach a man to appreciate a form of sexuality that is much more subtle, much more psychological, with the emphasis put on what is not done instead of the classic physical relationship.

    Oh well... I'll try to explain my point of view about money and knowledge another time!

    Thank you for the interesting post again.
    petit chiot

  2. A truly fascinating post. A D/s relationship with the sex stripped away entirely - it must be possible. For long stretches, my relationship is asexual in the sense of my wife and I not having sex. It is never entirely without sex though. Sexual tension is always there; the lack of sex is, sort of, sexual.

    Sctowell’s comments about affection and cuddling, always within strict limits, make good sense to me. As a submissive, I have to take what I am allowed. But I find denial of sex, the asexual periods my wife goes through, bearable and I can understand them. I find the withdrawal of physical contact and affection enormously difficult, unbearable. If my wife doesn’t want sex, she doesn’t want sex. That is her choice, and I have no say in the matter. If she is keeping me away from her entirely, if she will not touch or be touched, kiss me or be kissed, I can’t stop myself feeling that she is punishing me. There is no logic to this, it is a largely emotional thing.

    I think that framing this in terms of denial is wrong. My wife explained to me many years ago that I may be granted intimacy and pleasure, but I am not to expect or even anticipate it. These things are a privilege, not a right. I am often required to masturbate to release tension building in me. Sometimes, I do this alone behind closed doors; sometimes my wife may be present or watching me; sometimes she participates or directs me.

    A submissive who is pushing past established boundaries is not being a good submissive. How you deal with this depends entirely on your relationship. If I misbehave, my wife tells me so. Sharp words are always enough. It took some years to get to this point though. At the start of a relationship, it is a question of negotiation, setting the rules. Be absolutely clear what you want and what you don’t. It is all about you, your will and your needs. In the early months and years of our relationship, I was told my options were to do as I was told or to leave. Twice I was thrown out of our shared home.

    On money: For me this is an almost incidental aspect of my relationship. I have an allowance and I am consulted in some of our important financial decisions affecting our life. I may offer my opinion, but the decision is not mine. If we disagree, I give way. I am the main bread winner and all my pay goes into a joint account that is run by my wife. I have access to this, but only for convenience. I love having financial responsibility taken away. It limits my freedom, but I do not really need that.

    Power: My wife’s power over me is not to do with her ability or willingness to inflict pain on me. I think it derives from my need fro her approval, my need to know she is pleased and happy with me. And of course, having any power over another person is a huge responsibility. Early in our relationship, she often beat me, very hard. I wanted to be beaten. There was absolutely no physical pleasure in the beatings; it was a journey of discovery for both of us, and we both liked the peace it brought. She liked helping me recover from a beating; I loved the intimacy and care involved. I learnt very early on that my wife was not prepared to play at pain and punishment. If I was to be punished, it was going to really hurt.

    Too long. Too little reflection on your situation. Sorry.