Given that it’s February and the world around us has been saturated with heart-shaped balloons, greeting cards, and overly expensive roses, I thought it might be a good time to discuss one way of seeing a D/s relationship. Does this apply to every D/s relationship? Certainly not. D/s relationships are like zebras; no two look the same. In the Vanilla World, we refer to boyfriends and girlfriends and everyone understands what we’re talking about. If you’re not in a public D/s relationship, describing your Dom/me can be a bit challenging. I want to share my experience with you, as well as my “solution” to the problem.
Recently I had an interesting realization about my D/s relationship. Not surprisingly, it came about as a result of something happening in my day-to-day life. I was dealing with someone who I work with who got a bit too friendly/familiar with me. These awkward situations always make me uncomfortable and adding insult to injury, I have always been the girl who didn’t realize someone was flirting with me until it was beyond the awkward stage. In this case, though, it was quite overt. Sir and I have a long distance relationship so I wrote about the experience in an email. As usual, he always has the best advice and he suggested that I casually mention my “boyfriend” to ease the situation. I teased him about not just using the word “Dominant,” to which he replied that “Vanillas” don’t really like that term….
Days passed, and I found that I was still thinking about terminology. I realized that I don’t think of Sir as a boyfriend. He’s my Dominant. I wear his collar. I’ve usually only referred to him as “someone special in my life” because it’s true that the Vanilla World doesn’t openly accept D/s. But the fact is that the term “Dominant” doesn’t do him justice, either. So I decided that this needed more consideration. All of a sudden I didn’t want to “pollute” Sir by using the Vanilla term because “boyfriend” reminds me of my ex-boyfriend from my Vanilla relationship. Sir is so much more than a boyfriend, and “Dominant” doesn’t convey the sentiment enough, either.
I should mention at this point that I didn’t know that Sir was a Dominant when we met. That came later on. He is a true Dominant; it was ingrained in him since he was a child (and this is fascinating in and of itself, but I digress). I’d known him for a while and we were already kinda into each other when he finally brought it up. This is only worth mentioning because I didn’t like him because he was a Dominant, rather I liked the person that he is. The fact that he is a Dominant is like icing on the ball gag if you know what I mean….
If you look up alternatives to the word “boyfriend” on the Internet you end up with everything from modern terms like “bf” or “sugar daddy” to the rather archaic “paramour” and “gentleman caller.” According to Wikipedia, the term itself refers to the “’individual of significance’ with whom one shares a relationship.” While it’s very true that Sir is a gentleman, I don’t think that calling him a “gentleman caller” will really make things any better. That term calls to mind a creepy axe-wielding stalker in a late-night 1980s horror movie marathon.
So I started pondering the different ways of thinking about Dominants and traditional ways of thinking about boyfriends. (This is entirely interchangeable with Dommes and girlfriends, by the way). The important distinction is that this applies to those of us in a relationship-based D/s model. It doesn’t work for submissives who do nothing other than play with the Dominant in their lives.
I made a list of words that came to mind when I think of Dominants and boyfriends:
Communication, support, guidance, companionship, trust, leadership, discipline, protection, advice,
friend, lover, common interests, compatibility, partner, companion
I know there are lots of words that I’m missing, but the point here is that there is a ton of overlap between Dominants and boyfriends. Therefore I’m introducing the concept of “Domifiends.” Domifriends are Dominants who are more than just Dominants. They are the “more-than-significantly Significant Others” of the D/s world. Just as having a boyfriend wouldn’t work in the Vanilla World without most of those terms, I’d argue that a successful D/s relationship wouldn’t work without them, either. In fact, given that submissives give so much control to their Doms, I think that the connection between a Dom and sub, in this case, has to be even closer than a boyfriend/girlfriend relationship.
You might be asking why this matters. In the Ask lunaKM columns, I constantly see newbies wondering if it’s ok to have feelings for their Dominants. Of course, it is! Look at how many married D/s couples out there. Some of us need labels, though, and so in my brain “Domifriend” works to explain that a relationship with a Dominant is special. Does this mean you’re “going steady” with your Dom? Not at all. It just means that you have a deep connection with your Dom.
What does this all mean? Honestly, it’s just this sub’s way of seeing things. In truth, if someone asks me if I have a boyfriend, I’m not going to go into a long-winded diatribe about my Domifriend. My response will simply be “yes.” However, in my mind, I will smile because I know that Sir is so much more than a boyfriend….
Do you use the term “boyfriend” to describe your Dom/me? If you are not public with your D/s relationship, how do you introduce your Dom/me to other people?