A fun animated video about a guy that wants to be a Dom, but just doesn’t seem to get what that actually means! A contribution from friend of Wasteland, “Libertine”.
Script: © 2014 Libertine Video.
So, What is a Dominant?
(How to be a good Dominant)
From “A Submissives Journey” Website
Like the same question, what is a submissive, this is probably one of the biggest questions that is argued about in BDSM and Dominant submissive D/s relationships. Each person who has an interest in the lifestyle will undoubtedly have their own ideas about what makes a person dominant, but there will always be some common threads running through everyone’s definitions. It is also worth noting that a Dominant may not necessarily be seen as a good Dominant, although this too is open to interpretation by each persons own ideas of what a Dominant should, or should not be.
There are probably too many individual characteristics to list, because every person will react differently to every situation but, if you were able to observe a number of people, you might say “Yes that one is Dom”, or “No, that one is not”, based upon their actions and reactions. So, is it a futile exercise to try and define what makes a Dominant? Possibly, but still we can recognize certain familiar and fundamental characteristics that make up the profile of one who is likely to be dominant in their nature.
This discussion is confined to what makes a Dominant personality within the BDSM or Dominant submissive (D/s) lifestyle; for there is no doubt that many dominant personalities exist outside D/s. That said, many dominant people would never be capable of being seen as a Dominant within the Dominant submissive D/s lifestyle as it takes a special mix of certain key characteristics.
Much of what is written about Dominant submissive relationships is centered around control, and controlling. For me the most important aspect of a Dominant is self control. Ask the question: how can you possibly control another if you cannot control yourself? Self control does not mean being totally without emotion: far from it in fact. What it means is to be able to allow those emotions and feelings to come to the fore when needed, and to direct them in the right way. So, we have self control.
Being in control of oneself leads to other similar traits. Knowing what you want, and being single-minded about it. Not being egotistical or self centered, but being able to hear what others need, and want, from you, and using the power, knowledge, and experience that you have to fulfill those needs. Self control also stems from the ability to analyze, and understand yourself, and others. Never be afraid to question, or discuss differences of opinion. Most “good” or “respected” Dominants will likely already have very defined views on certain subjects, such as discipline and punishment. These views may be based upon knowledge and experience, or both. It’s worth considering where knowledge and experience comes from. Knowledge can be gained from books, reading, other people, but is not necessarily gained from actually doing something. Experience on the other hand is achieved through participation in an activity itself. So, a “novice” Dominant may well have lots of knowledge, but little experience. That does not make them a bad Dominant, just one who has more to learn. An “experienced” Dominant on the other hand can have much practical experience, although ideally, a good mix of both is important. However simply being “experienced” in itself is not the only means to being viewed as a “good” Dominant either.
Thinking about what one is doing, and understanding why, and for what reason is important within a dominant submissive (D/s) relationship. We hear many people “preaching” about how to do this, and that, how not to, and what you should and should not do. Very often this is a recycling of what they have heard others say. A good Dominant will be prepared to listen, question, and make their own choice. If they are the right type of person then it is likely that the conclusions they reach by their own processes will be the right ones anyway.
These basic characteristics: Self control, knowledge, and a questioning mind, along with the ability to listen, understand, and question, are the foundations on which a Dominant personality should be built. Next is the ability to accept responsibility. A Dominant should understand that in a Dominant submissive (D/s) relationship, the submissive is going to place their faith in the Dom in many ways. It is inherent in a Dominant submissive (D/s) relationship that the submissive needs to give up some level of control and responsibility to the Dominant. Acceptance of that control must sit comfortably with the Dominant. To have another hand over control of their life, (or at least parts of it) to you is an awesome feeling. It must be borne with great care, and never abused. So, a Dominant does not abuse the power they are given. They never take that power, they are given it out of love, trust, and respect, and the feeling that they can improve the quality of another’s life.
Hand in hand with responsibility, as the Dominant is charged with guiding and helping the submissive in their growth, comes patience. Patience in a Dominant is a requisite too, because there may be many times when a submissive may not reach expectations. This may not be due to any failing on the submissive’s part, and so the Dominant must show patience, and a calming influence: an ability to help the sub, to achieve what they both want, in a structured and sensible way, and never to criticize when things don’t go well.
Being single-minded in what they want is another Dominant trait (although not exclusively, I know many submissives too, who are very single-minded.). The ability to have a vision, and through whatever gets in the way, to be able to preserve that in their mind, and make progress towards that goal, irrespective of what it might be, is likely to be another characteristic seen in most Dominants. Through all these there also remains the fact, that someone who is able to accept the responsibility for another, make informed decisions about life altering (for some at least) processes, of having an ability to manage, and accept change, and alter the plan to suit prevailing circumstances. One’s care for another must by definition take their hopes, fears, needs, and desires into account; these needs will change over time, and so, as they do, the original vision that one may have had for a relationship may well have to change. The inability to see that is not conducive to Dominance.