While dominant/submissive fantasies are still pretty marginalized in mainstream circles and representations, they are slowly becoming more accepted and less stigmatized. Still, people who have dominant/submissive fantasies often feel like they can’t share them for fear of being judged or rejected which can lead to negative relationship patterns and a lack of sex drive.
Maybe you have already thoroughly explored your BDSM/Kink and power-related fantasies – or maybe you have never felt safe enough to utter those desires. After seeing hundreds of clients, we can confirm that many people’s core sexual needs are about power in some way or another.
As you begin to identify your “Hottest Sexual Movie” and find that it does have something to do with power, it is important to consider what side of the power dynamic excites you. This will help you engage in your own sex life, and with clients, with more empathy and presence. You may want to feel like you have complete power, feel powerless, or play around on both sides.
Many submissives desire to feel restrained or contained in some way that makes them feel safe. This can be achieved many ways. You may want to feel like you don’t have to take any responsibility, as if it is all just happening to you. You also may want to feel punished or coerced.
If you are dominant, you may want to feel powerful and in command. You may like the feeling of coercing your partner to do something and then having them realize they like it. You may want to be judgmental, scolding, or punishing.
Or you may find that at times you like to be dominant and at other times you like to be submissive. This is commonly referred to as being a “switch” and the act as “switching.”
It’s All In The Balance
Achieving the right balance of communication and play to make dominance and submission pleasurable is not simple. Even when someone states they want to be dominated, they may remain a bit ambivalent.
Whenever you are playing with power differences, it is important to be aware that this kind of play can provoke strong emotions. Not everyone is ready to play with dominance, and some need to feel a romantic or passionate connection before they are willing to explore it. Some people like light dominance but nothing heavy, and some never want to play this way.
Many women have been told that they can’t be both feminist and act on their submissive desires. This is such a misunderstanding of what women deserve which is choices about how we want to experience our bodies.
People often fear that a dominant/submissive power dynamic in the bedroom will not be contained to that space. The truth is there are power differences in relationships, and dominance and submission can be one way to openly explore these differences. This is why we also recommend switching roles and seeing what it feels like for each of you to be on the other side of the equation.
If you are working with clients who want to explore these power dynamics in session make sure that those instances have clear boundaries and are differentiated from the client/practitioner relationship. This way you can still hold the space necessary for their growth while offering them a place to explore without judgment.
Dominant women and submissive men remain less common, and even less commonly articulated in our society, in part, because we are all impacted by heterosexual gender roles growing up. This added level of marginalization can cause challenges for some submissive men and dominant women, as they may feel ashamed of being in the minority, or judged by their partner for falling outside gender norms.
Another challenge is when two dominants or two submissives get together. In the extremes, you can end up in deadlocked power struggles, or with no one taking any initiative at all.
Bring A Non-Judgmental Attitude
This is why it is so important to bring an open, non-judgmental attitude to your Hottest Sexual Movie conversations. There is nothing either of you can do to change your partner’s desires. You can, however, accept them without feeling responsible for fulfilling them. Guiding clients in these conversations can be a challenge and it is important to constantly remind them that their partner’s desire is not an insult to them.
Even when dominant/submissive desires align, we caution clients that they need to have realistic expectations. It is very rare to get the dominant/submissive movie right the first time. Both partners need to be prepared to have a number of “takes” in order to find out what words and actions turn the two of you on the most.
With regard to words – remember that tone and attitude are important, not just the words themselves. If your partner tells you something turns them on (for example, “I really like it when you tell me to get on my knees and then you grab my hair”), ask what turns them on about it. When you begin to get some insight into why particular actions are a turn-on, you can add others that are similar thematically.
They may say, for example, “I like it because I feel like you’re in control of the experience and I have to do exactly what you say.” On the other hand, they might say, “I like it because it feels like you’re using me for your pleasure.” These are two very different themes that would lead to different kinds of sexual experiences. The first could include pleasing both parties, while the second would mean that, the dominant would focus more on taking their own pleasure and if they focus too much on their partner’s pleasure, they might get turned off. We also tell clients to avoid bringing in “real life” conflicts (even as innocuous as chores or charged as infidelity) unless you have some practice. These can break the scene and also lead to continued conflict instead of easing it.
Once people find some words, gestures, and experiences that turn them on, we still make sure they continue to communicate their needs and desires and give feedback. This will add variety and keep explorations fresh and interesting. After all, there are only so many times a teacher can punish an unruly student before some creativity is in order.
Using the Somatica Method we have seen many of our students and clients integrate dominant/submissive role play into their relationships and practices in ways that are safe, exciting, and dynamic.
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