Recently, I was discussing sex with a friend. Obviously. What else is there to talk about? Anyway, the subject of domination came into conversation. While we were describing various fantasy situations involving dominant/passive roles, she posed this question to me- why is it that dominance is such a common theme in our fantasies? This got me thinking. Obviously, I have my own thoughts on the topic, but I thought it might be a bit more interesting if I spiced things up a bit by asking a bunch of my friends, acquaintances, colleagues, etc. what they thought about it. As all of you know, I am a psychology major…so please forgive me now for the psycho-babble/analysis that is bound to make its way into this blog post!
I posed the question somewhat like this:
Imagine a situation in which you and someone you are intimate with are engaging in some sort of sexual play, and things get so overwhelmingly passionate that suddenly your partner throws you against a wall and begins to dominate you. What is it about this situation that is so universally “hot” to us?
A lot of the people that responded to my question had trouble vocalizing exactly what it was about the situation that was so stimulating, but they unanimously agreed that it was just that- stimulating. A few took the time to really analyze themselves and think about why they are, in fact, turned on by being dominated.
Some came to the conclusion that it has to do with instinct, and letting go of everything else but that pure physical sensation that we feel in that very moment. One woman commented that it helps to heighten one’s arousal because “something is being done â€˜to them’, not â€˜with them’. Another said that it allows people to “completely let themselves go and let their body take over”. Someone even called this feeling a sort of high- “you could say the same thing about drinking to get drunk or doing mind-altering drugs to feel free. People like being able to let go and lose control”.
One friend went into detail about how primal this instinct really is. “(It makes me feel) like I’ve been hunted and captured, and he’s the predator. I think it’s a primal response of safety. It shows a level of testosterone I feel my body is made to be attracted to because like it shows a power that means I’ll be able to rely on him to like “take care of babies” and “hunt food”… being completely overcome by a man in this way is so hot to me because it’s like nothing can go wrong. This kind of dominance to me makes me feel safe, not violated.” It’s almost animalistic.
The second theme I noticed in people’s answers was a sense of role-play. One woman, extremely successful in her career and a busy mother, wrote that “there is a definite tendency to want to be taken; to be at the effect of someone else’s power” is a welcome change from being “always in charge as the boss, the mom, the mentor, the oldest sibling, etc”. Another friend said that young, progressive women are “bombarded by messages instructing us to be in control and we spend so much time doing just that…there’s something alluring about the idea of being out of control, having someone else dominate us”.
Something else that managed to sneak its way into almost every answer was the allure of the sense of urgency. “The fact that the people engaging in the scene can’t even wait to get somewhere more comfortable adds excitement…a lot of people are turned on by the â€˜I can’t wait any longer, I have to grab you here and now’ aspect…the passion and urgency…is enticing”.
So that’s as much as I’ve heard…but please please please comment with your thoughts!
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