Actually, it was originally going to be that word. Having mentioned “control freak” yesterday I felt it necessary to express the other side of that coin:
A dominant person chooses to control what they want when they want because they enjoy it.
A control freak tries to control everything all the time because they can’t help themselves.
But what I’ve been learning more and more lately is that the important part of that first definition is not “want” or “control” or “dominant” or even “enjoy.” No, the important word is chooses.
This epiphany came during a class on “the D/s Love Triangle” I attended at BOLDcon 2013 in Los Angeles. The presenter was working through a model of any power exchange relationship having three members: the big letter, the little letter, and the dynamic itself. The problem, as she saw it, was that love would creep in and the dynamic would suffer as the big and little letters grew more emotionally attached.
That’s a gross oversimplification of the excellent class, but it suffices. One of the important steps she highlighted was the idea that the big letter person’s desires should be taken care of before the little letter person’s desires, but not before their needs. A man raised his hand and asked “Do you have any suggestions for how best to determine the difference between a slave’s needs versus their wants?”
Before I had a chance to think, I turned my head and said “Decisively!” I explained that it could be difficult to tell the difference, but that what was important was that once something was put into one category or the other it needed to stay there. Not forever, obviously – but you couldn’t just treat something as a treat one day and then an imperative the next and then an afterthought the day after that. If you’re wrong about something, as a dominant, that’s fine, but be wrong in a decisive way, not while waffling. There was a general murmur of agreement in the room
If you sit, sit. If you stand, stand. Above all, don’t wobble! – Zen Proverb
He who sit in middle of road get SMUSHED (smack!). Like grape! – Miyagi-Sensei
It was not any real brilliance on my part, though it was an epiphany of sorts. One of those bittersweet realizations, far too late, of exactly where you went wrong in a prior relationship. It’s not worth going into detail, but it was much like Hamlet – a series of decisions were needed, and over and over they were put off or implemented in a half-assed way or made and then abandoned. “This is how it will be,” I didn’t say, neither did I declare “No, we are not changing from what we agreed.” Instead I tried being a sensitive new age dom, ruling with a stern foam-rubber glove.
We’ve both since moved into other adventures separately, and perhaps we’re both wiser for it. At least, I’d like to think I’ve learned my lesson, but I’m not really sure…
Just kidding. I’ve certainly learned at least one lesson. Indecisiveness is a very effective way way to destroy a relationship.
The rest, as the bard says, is silence.