Early this year, Molly (one of my favorite sex bloggers) posted a list of questions for submissive women. Among these questions was this one:
What are the top 5 myths/beliefs you would like to dispel about submissive women?
I’ve been thinking a lot about this question, so I decided to write a post listing off the myths I find most troubling about my identity as a submissive. If you’re interested in a D/s relationship or have a loved one exploring a D/s lifestyle, here are a few myths that need to be busted:
Myth #1: Submissive women are being abused by their doms.
This is the biggest and most troubling of the “submissive women” myths. Abuse is a very real, scarey thing that happens to a lot of women. Some of those women are submissive by nature. However, in a true, adult D/s relationship, the submissive is not in any way being abused or brainwashed. Being submissive to a man (or woman for that matter) means that you trust him more than you trust yourself, and that he cares for you more than he cares for himself. You are owned like a prize possession, not like garbage.
Even in a more casual D/s relationship or play scene, the submissive is not being abused (in most cases). The pain she experiences is administered only with consent and in a safe environment.
Cash might spank me, command me, and tie me up…but he NEVER EVER abuses me.
This is not to say that abuse never happens in the D/s world. It does, just like it happens in the vanilla world. There are bad people from all walks of life. Any dom who abuses his position to abuse his sub is a piece of crap and doesn’t represent most doms.
Myth #2: Submissive women don’t have a say.
Submission doesn’t mean you are a limp rag with no mind or opinion. The dynamics of a D/s relationship varies from couple to couple, but part of companionship is the ability to talk about your ideas and discuss your point of view. Also, every submissive woman has the very important ability to say, “stop.” By using a safe word, submissives can express when they are no longer comfortable with a scene.
Myth #3: Submissive women are weak or stupid.
There are always exceptions to the rule, but most submissive women are extremely strong. D/s is a mind game as much as it is physical. Plus, you have to be strong for your dom. Part of the role of the submissive, at least in my relationship, is to be there to support my dom when he’s in need. This often requires more strength than many woman could ever hope to muster.
And stupid? Well, that’s just flat-out not true. Results vary from person to person of course, but most of the submissive women I know are incredibly smart. In fact, many of them are breadwinners and businesswomen in their non-D/s life.
Myth #4: Submissive women are weird and sex-obsessed.
Well, I guess we’re all a little weird, but there’s nothing wrong with women who want to be submissive. The desire for submission (or domination for that matter) are extremely normal. Even vanilla couples play with furry handcuffs from time to time!
Submissives are also not obsessed with sex. While it’s true that many kinksters are more in tune with their sexual desires than the average woman, submission goes beyond play time in the bedroom. Plus, there’s nothing wrong with having a healthy sex life, as long as you’re also taking care of yourself physically and mentally/emotionally.
Myth #5: Submissive women are all the same.
Not in the least. I’m very different from many of my submissive friends. Some couples are living a 24/7 D/s lifestyle. Others are mainly bedroom subs and doms. One submissive could enjoy the humiliation aspect while another enjoys the pain aspect and still another likes bondage. Hard limits vary from sub to sub too. Not every dom and every sub are right together, for a relationship or even for a single scene.
In addition, some subs like to play publicly, while others aren’t “out” and still others will play publicly, but only with their dom, not with other people. I know subs who are goth and subs who are preps and subs who are indie spirits. Subs can be lesbians, straight, bi, pan, trans, or anywhere in between.
And that’s just talking about things from a D/s perspective. Remember, subs are people. We have different hobbies and different careers and different life goals. Being a sub is just part of our lives, like being a motorcyclist or being a Ravens fan or being a banker. It takes many elements to define a person.
Okay, sue me. I couldn’t stop at five, as asked in the original question! I think these last two points are as important as the first five.
Myth #6: Submissive women will submit to any man.
I submit to Cash. I’ve submitted to other boyfriends in past. But I don’t submit to just anyone. Most subs are like that. Some submit to multiple men, but that doesn’t mean you should just automatically walk up to her and try to dominate her. It’s pretentious and rude.
Submission is a gift. It requires both trust and dedication. In my day-to-day life, I often deal with men at work, and I’m not submissive in least. In fact, I think most of them would be shocked if this read this blog and knew it was me. I might be a sub, but I’m not your sub. Also, even women who submit to multiple men usually have a “main” dom, whether that’s a boyfriend or a husband or someone else in her life. You better show him a little respect before trying to play with his sub.
It’s important also to note that sometimes the D/s sparks just don’t fly. That happened to me before I met Cash, about two years ago. I went on two dates with a very nice dom and although we had a lot of common interests and even a little flirting chemistry, I didn’t feel submissive toward him at all. Sometimes, that happens.
Myth #7: Submissive women are making it harder for feminists to be taken seriously.
Before ending this post, I want to address one last myth that is prevalent in some circles. Some “feminists” out there think that submissive women are undoing everything they fight for.
I have two words for those women: Fuck and You.
Feminism isn’t about being powerful. Feminism isn’t about being best. Feminism is about having choice.
It’s about being able to make the choice to stay home with your kids and be the 1950s housewife if you want to, or about being able to go out and have a career if that’s your ambition in life. It’s about not being forced to wear pretty little dresses that your man likes, but being able to if that’s what you choose to do.
I get it that some people will warp the submissive lifestyle. Some chauvinistic pigs will point to females who are submissive and say that this is what every girl should be like. And that sucks. But if you point to submissive and say that every girl should strive to be as far away from that as possible, you are just as bad.
I choose to be submissive because that’s what makes me happy in life. Go find what makes you happy instead of blaming others for your unhappiness.
Okay, so those are my seven myths. Hope that has cleared up a thing or two for those of you not super familiar with submission. What myths have you heard about submission? What questions do you have?
Rori is the founder of Between My Sheets. She works full time as a writer, reviewer, and online educator and can be reached at rori-at-betweenmysheets.com