I can’t remember if I’ve mentioned this before but I asked The Dandy, once, why he identifies as dominant. By which I mean: he didn’t ever mention BDSM at all (beyond that one mention that he’s a dom) or seem to crave it or have any kinks or get excited by D/s type scenarios and I didn’t wanna assume he was just calling himself dominant out of a misplaced urge to blend in with other people in our largely goth/kinky/edgy social circle, butttttt…
He said that he just has a knack for getting people to do his bidding. First off (and I said this to him) being dominant, in the kinky D/s type sense, isn’t being able to get people to obey you. That could be charisma or being physically intimidating or seeming knowledgeable or any number of other things. Being dominant is liking to be in charge/be obeyed.
Also, though? (And I didn’t say this out loud…) I have seen no particular evidence of this alleged ability. I mean okay, I’ve seen him ask Dandette for things – even things that inconvenienced her – and she said yes. But Dandette…kind of has issues with saying no, I think. Especially to The Dandy, since HE PAYS ALL HER LIVING EXPENSES. Of course she’s not going to want to piss him off. Ooooh, big tough domly-dom Dandy shooting fish in a fucking barrel. So power. Much dom. Wow!
I wonder if he mistakes basic courtesy in people for obedience? Like is he asking someone “Hey could you pass me that pen?” and when they go “Sure” and toss it over he’s thinking “Awwwwww yeah. Everyone does what I want!”? I just don’t get it.
Since our “so…you’re…’dominant’?” conversation, it’s come out that The Dandy has a big kink for needle play, so fair enough, perhaps he’s conflating dominance and sadism. Or perhaps he wants to be dominant over someone but is conflicted about it (he’s conflicted about the sadism for sure).
But I’ve noticed that he has a really hard time saying no to things, which – for me – really undercuts his alleged superpower of making people obey him. Like, he’s a terrible snorer and (as a very light sleeper who shares his bed…) this has been driving me mad. I’ve told him several times that I think he should get assessed to make sure he doesn’t have sleep apnea. And each time, he does this awkward giggle but doesn’t actually answer me. So it seems Mr. People-Just-Seem-To-Obey-Me can’t bring himself to use his mouth-hole and tell me “I’m not comfortable doing that because I’d probably have to do a sleep study, which sounds hella inconvenient, and also I’m afraid of confronting possible health issues; stop asking” (which I’m pretty sure is what he’s thinking).
And when he doesn’t wuss out and entirely avoid addressing a thing I want, he’s doing what I want. I see this as him simply being an attentive boyfriend, not submitting to me, but it’s interesting because he defined his dominance around people doing what he wants and yet he asks me for very little and gives me foot massages on demand.
Oh that’s the other thing: when he does want something (well, an emotional/personal need fulfilled; he has no problem saying “could you take this suitcase down to the car?”), he doesn’t usually ask me using words. If he wants sex he hints at it by taking out his penis and flapping it around until I notice. If he wants a hug he’ll sidle up to me and put his arms out, or just kind of hover around me with a hopeful expression. I actually can’t even remember a single other time he’s asked me for something emotional-like except once, before I moved in with him: he was at my place cooking dinner and I was watching tv in the next room and eventually he said, kind of irritably, “It would be nice to have some company in here.” This was probably the fifth time he’d cooked dinner for me at my place, and I’d always puttered around in the living room while he cooked; I’d been puttering for at least an hour so far that night. Seems like he can’t bring himself to say what he needs until he’s starting to resent me for not reading his mind, which is…not great. And also, to my mind, not particularly dominant. Or at least, maybe he’s dominant (in the sense that it’s an orientation; he wants to take control) but he’s not great at it yet.
But yeah, back to him doing what I want…mostly, I am very careful to ask for things in a neutral way. I mean there’s a sort of energy I can switch on when I’m asking for a thing as a dominant and I don’t do that with The Dandy. He is not my submissive; he is simply a wonderfully attentive boyfriend, and that is where I keep my brain when I request things of him.
Every now and then, though, I have gotten a bit feisty and used my dom-voice on him a bit…and from the look on his face, he seems to know exactly what I’m doing. And he still does what I ask. And he doesn’t seem annoyed; he seems kind of…intrigued, or something. It causes some sort of frisson when I get toppy with him. I think probably it’s a challenge thing; my being toppy makes him want to, like, conquer me with his superior domliness or whatever. Except, like I said…he usually does end up doing the thing I imperiously demanded of him.
Earlier today, The Dandy was at one end of this big L-shaped couch. I was sitting in the crux of the L. The tv remote was at the empty end of the L. And (being quite possibly more audacious than I’ve ever dared before, with him…) I was like “could you be a lamb and fetch me the remote?” with full-on dom energy. He pointed out that I was closer to it than he was. I said “but it’s still so farrrrr” and batted my eyelashes at him facetiously. A moment passed in silence and just as I was about to relent and reach for the thing myself, The Dandy set his book aside, got up, walked to the other end of the couch to retrieve the remote (which I could have reached myself without even getting up, probably, just stretching real hard), and handed it to me.
An hour or so ago I got up to get a piece of cheese to snack on and bumped into The Dandy, who was exiting the kitchen with pieces of something white-ish in his hand. “Is that cheese?” I asked. It was. “Ha! I was just going to go get some of that, myself.” The Dandy asked me if I was going to try to take some of his from him now, instead. “No,” I said, “I was going to ask nicely if I could have some of yours.” (Actually I wasn’t even going to do that until he brought it up. Seeing if he’d relinquish some of the food he’d gotten for himself had occurred to me, but I didn’t wanna overdo these little D/s experiments. He does seem incapable of expressing dislike of my behaviour until shit gets critical, after all.) He gave me some of his cheese. (When I later decided I wanted more I asked if I could get him some too, just to balance things out.)
On a somewhat related note, The Dandy has a habit of turning off the shower without actually depressing the little button that diverts the water back to the tap. Which means that if I decide to take a bath later and go to fill a cup with water to rinse the tub out, I get cold water gooshed onto the back of my head, instead. The last time this happened I stomped into the bedroom where The Dandy was, half jokey-mad and half actually-mad, and demanded to know what sort of cretin turns off the faucets in the shower but doesn’t press the button.
“I just assume the button will fall down on its own when the water turns off, like it does in most showers,” The Dandy said.
“And you’ve been living in this particular apartment for how long now?” (it’s been five years and I knew it and he knew I knew it).
“…A while,” The Dandy said, sheepishly.
“The next time my head gets unexpectedly doused in water I’m making you lick it off,” I said, slipping into dom-voice kind of accidentally and looking him right in the eye. I so totally expected him to snarkily remind me that he’s stronger so I can’t make him do anything that I pre-emptively responded with “…Or, I’ll just get something of yours that’s made of fine leather and dry myself on that.” Only when I’d turned and was striding out of the room did I realize that he hadn’t actually snarked at me and that in fact he’d been looking at me with a mixture of, I think, arousal and unease.
Or maybe his expression was one of “I’d snark, but I did do a stupid thing sooooo…” who the hell knows.
At any rate, as much as I do want a submissive man in my life (and will continue to look for one), I think The Dandy’s toppiness sparks with mine in a sexy way. He keeps me on my toes a bit. He presents an appearance of challenge while in fact giving me foot rubs every time I ask and petting my head til I fall asleep without me even having to ask. Probably a submissive could challenge me and inflame my lust in some similar way, but I’m not sure yet exactly what that would look like. I’m not sure I would tolerate a sub acting exactly like The Dandy does, with me. Or at least I never thought that sort of behaviour would be tolerable or desirable to me in a sub. Maybe I’m wrong.