Social Dominance vs Kinky Dominance

Having a ‘dominant personality’, being prone to taking charge in social situations, or simply being bossy have absolutely NOTHING whatsoever to do with whether you’re dominant in the kinky sense. Those are examples of social dominance. Kinky dominance, on the other hand, involves the desire to be in charge (at least some of the time) of the person (or people) you have that agreement with. Enjoying telling your partner to make your coffee so you can stay in bed a little longer, for example, has no connection with enjoying being in charge at work.

For fuck’s sake people, social dominance and kinky dominance are different things. Social dominance is about as useful as as a person’s hairstyle for predicting whether that person is dominant in the kinky sense.

Some of the most socially dominant people I know of are submissive in their personal relationships. Most of the kink conferences I’ve been to were organized by submissive women. If wrangling volunteers, speakers, catering, venues (and whatever else I’ve forgotten) for an entire weekend conference isn’t socially dominant, I don’t know what is.

There are also plenty of shy or quiet people who have no interest in being the boss at work or around their friends, but who are still dominant in the kinky sense. Those people’s dominance counts just as much as that of the people who happen to be dominant in both the kinky and social senses.

Given the stereotypes of what a dominant and a submissive are supposed to be it’s not surprising that people would conflate social and kinky dominance, but it’s still incredibly fucking irritating. I’ve been told over and over that it’s surprising that I’m dominant because I’m so quiet. The people who’ve said that meant well, but you can only be told how surprising and unusual you are so many times before you start hearing ‘You’re doing dominance wrong’.

No, I’m not doing it wrong. We’re just different. We could just as easily say that people who try to boss around everyone in sight are trying too hard and should just accept that they’re really submissive. We could just as easily say that ‘real’ doms (not that there is such a thing, but that’s another rant) are secure enough in their dominance that they don’t need to make a big show of how very domly they are.

If there can be sensual doms, sadistic doms, strict doms, low protocol doms, playful doms, 24/7 doms, and just in the bedroom doms, there can damned well be quiet doms too.

3 thoughts on “Social Dominance vs Kinky Dominance

  1. Totally agree.

    I think there is much more acceptance of the fact that submissives can be awesome leaders and managers and organisers at work, with their friends, with family, or out in the world in general and might be extroverted, loud, outgoing, pushy etc, while the idea that dominants might not be *any of those things* seems to be unthinkable and unacceptable.

    Part of the difficulty with acceptance is that while submissives are quite happy to extol their ‘dominant’ social tendencies (because that kind of social behaviour is prized and valued) and everyone is keen to support them in ‘counter balancing’ their relationship submission with it (this ‘countering’ is a reason I HATE that chest thumpy alpha crap because inherent in it is the devaluation of submission), the opposite isn’t true. I hardly ever see dominants shout about how socially submissive they are because that kind of social behaviour is *not* prized or valued and there is no *need* to counter their relationship dominance with anything because nobody thinks less of them for it.

    Ferns

    • I hardly ever see dominants shout about how socially submissive they are because that kind of social behaviour is *not* prized or valued and there is no *need* to counter their relationship dominance with anything because nobody thinks less of them for it.

      It’s amazing how many kinky people seem to think they’re somehow better than vanilla people when we might as well be vanilla ourselves the way we cling to society’s expectations of us. If we can get past the idea that it’s never okay to hit a loved one, why can’t we get past the idea that being shy, quiet and socially submissive isn’t okay?

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