Many people within kink are familiar with the stereotype of the Domniscient Master, he who knows all and is completely in command of all aspects not only of his life but also those who serve him. Or perhaps it’s a Mistress, whose every whim is law and who is always the most amazingly poised and put-together-person in the room. Thankfully, most of us also know that while it’s a pleasant fantasy, it does not match reality.
Well, ok, I’ve met Mistress Liliane Hunt. And I knew Flagg, briefly. But most of the time it doesn’t match reality. Doms of any flavor are as prone to human foibles as anyone, and anyone in service who doesn’t see that has very selective vision.
Yet there seems to be a perception that if you are not always “on” you are somehow less. You’re a top? Well, that’s nice, but it’s not as tough as someone who dominates. You dom? Well, that’s nice, but you only do it on the weekends; there’s a 24/7 dominant over there with her sub. One sub? Pshaw, that man over there is real Old Guard, he’s got three boys in his household. The Domlier-Than-Thou game is quite a fun one, especially at larger events (or, equally amusing, small events that are “high-protocol”).
And as is written in Kinky & Popular posts like this one, it seems that these doms are just supposed to inherently know exactly how to deal with things:
But, you may have noticed, we don’t have “Dominant support” groups, by and large. So while you’re risking more of your body and heart on the front end – we’re risking a hell of a lot of our soul and our mind on the back end.
I loved the post (as did over 600 others) but I kind of went all Scooby-doo (“RUHH?!?”) when he sad that. Because I sure as hell have a “dominant support” group, several friends whose opinion I respect, whose relationships I often envy, and whose skills, both practical and ethereal, I strive to emulate. When I’m faced with something I am unsure of – and believe me, it happens – I fucking stop and ask for directions. Or at least nudge my fellow travelers and say something like Hey, does that look like a cliff to you? Or just a jump? Have you seen any tigers or alligators around anywhere?
Change or Die
That advice can be indispensable when things gang aft agley, as they will when you’re living within a titled relationship. Regardless of what that is – boyfriend, wife, Master, kajira, slutmonkey, bubblegum chewer – that’s just a word until you decide to assign it some meaning, and give it a framework of rules. But those rules have to be flexible, because no one can predict how cold reality is going to impact your protocol. You can declare that the ball has to stay up in the air, but gravity ain’t gonna listen, and no matter how much you toss it in the air and order “STAY!” in your domliest voice, it’s gonna come down. Gravity sucks. That’s how it goes.
Dominant: The person who comes up with the plan.
Submissive: The person who attempts to follow the dominant as the dominant attempts to follow the plan.
That’s the definition, in my book.
What does this mean? It means that as a dom, you are better off to figure out how to be flexible. Note, this does not necessarily mean going back: remember your Art of War, where the key is not to find a path to victory, but to ensure that all paths lead to victory. Or, in the words of the Marine commander at the Chosin Reservoir, “Retreat, Hell! We’re just advancing in a different direction.”
You want to be a big scary amazingly tough domly domniscient? It’s not going to be by being inflexible in the face of reality. It’s going to be through being able to take the surprises that reality throws at you and twisting them into something that furthers your original goal. Turning it into something so awesome that the submissive is left thinking that you maybe planned it that way all along (insert evil laugh as necessary).
The best way to figure that out? Your dominant support group. The people you can call to help you parse out the choices, come up with possible outcomes, weigh the parameters and the reactions and adjust your old plan – which was good, of course – into the New Plan of Awesome. The more you do this, the more your submissive can also reflect the awesome.
Or as ControlEnthused, one of the most key supports I’ve ever had, put it so succinctly:
It serves to help her do what she’s there to do, which helps her be more awesome.…and why wouldn’t I want that?