We all understand that if a dominant top doesn’t like the way their scene is going it’s on them to steer it in a direction that makes them (and obviously everyone they’re playing with) happier, right? They’re the one running the show, it would be ridiculous for them to blame the sub for not magically knowing what they wanted, wouldn’t it? And if they did, the sub would probably not bother speaking to them again because they’re obviously a complete fucking tool.
So why do we let dominant bottoms get away with blaming their partners because they’re incompetent at running a scene? Okay, stupid question. We let them get away with it because so few dominant bottoms are self aware enough to know they’re dominant and it’s so easy for women in particular to be manipulated into thinking it’s our fault when things go wrong. Maybe I’ll reach douchebag dominant bottoms with this post and maybe I won’t, but I’m hoping this will at least be comforting to the tops who are being blamed for not dominating “correctly” when the problem is the supposed “submissive” doesn’t actually want to be dominated at all.
Dominant bottoms have no one to blame but themselves if the scene doesn’t go the way they were hoping. You’re the fucking dom. If the scene isn’t doing it for you, learn to fucking steer. Making your sub (let’s be honest, if you want to run the scene to your exact specifications you need a submissive partner or a very well paid professional) try to read your mind is mean, lazy, and setting them up for failure in the non-fun way. This is what I mean by “incompetent at running a scene.” I’ll freely admit that steering a scene while making it look like you’re not in control is more complicated that simple domination from the top, but you still don’t get to blame other people for your failings.
On the upside, the fact that it’s your fault your scenes aren’t working the way you’d like means you have the power to fix it. First of all, you have to admit that expecting someone to read your mind is total douchebag behaviour. If having a scene play out the exact way you fantasized about is really important to you, write it down and give your partner the fucking script ahead of time. I am absolutely serious: write it down, give your partner the script, and rehearse (and, uh, date a theatre geek if at all possible). While you’re writing down that script and rehearsing it, you might also spare just a second or two to think about how much work you’re asking your partner to do and how utterly unreasonable it would be to expect them to magically intuit the pages and pages of dialog and actions that they’re trying to memorize.
If you’re not as attached to acting out a pre-scripted fantasy, you can teach your partner to read you/which types of interactions do it for you/what sort of persona does it for you. This will be a lot of work for both of you and you’ll probably have to spend huge amounts of time talking out what worked and what didn’t, but working with your partner to teach them how to play their role in a way that works for you is pretty much the only way you’re going to get what you want. I mean, you can hold out for the woman who, by some amazing coincidence, just happens to like topping in the exact way you like, but that’s about as likely to work as planning to retire by winning the lottery.
Sure, this all goes against the fantasy that you’re actually submissive, but do you want to cling to the fantasy or do you want to have scenes that you really enjoy? This actually isn’t that different from what people who are actually submissive go through when they negotiate a higher-risk scene like a take-down. Any responsible dom will insist on very thorough negotiation before doing anything that could go horribly wrong, even up to the point where the submissive starts worrying that they’re dictating exactly what the dom is going to do. If submissive people can negotiate a scene that works for them, you can goddamn well do it too.
The one thing I really want to say to unaware dominant bottoms is stop fucking blaming the sub when you didn’t teach them how to please you! If you can’t have fun unless things are going your way (which is totally normal, I’m a control freak too), then it’s your job to make things go your way. It’s not exactly unheard of for people to enjoy getting a reaction out of their play partner – if you can tell them exactly how to get that reaction, you’re actually saving them a lot of stumbling around in the dark. You do need someone who’s willing to take orders, but I hear there are a few of those people in the kink community 🙂
For people who are trying to make an unaware dominant bottom happy, the one thing I really want you to know is it’s not your fault. You’re not a bad top, you’re not stupid, you’re not doing it wrong. If your partner isn’t fully honest with you about what they want, how the fuck are you supposed to give it to them?