Romancing the Domme

To me, romance is doing something sweet to show someone that you are thinking of them, something to make them happy, to make them feel special. It’s the little gestures that demonstrate that feeling.

Following on from a really lively Twitter conversation a while back, Mistress Lilyana has written a really interesting post on ‘Romantic shit‘. Go and read it.

In summary, she said that her submissives have, for the most part, not romanced her. She theorises:

“Perhaps there is something about me that repels romantic gestures. Maybe I’m too independent. It’s true. I’ll buy my own damn flowers. Maybe guys can sense that about me.

But I wonder if maybe it’s my dominance…”

I have so many feels about this post!!

Firstly it makes me angry: No, it’s not you ‘being the Domme’! It’s THEM. Idiots!

If it’s not part of my submissive’s remit to figure out what I want and like, what makes me feel loved, happy, desired, and then do the living fuck out of those things, then what the fuck is he doing?! He better not be giving me lame excuses about why he isn’t doing it!! Fuck off!!

I want to be my submissive’s first priority, his lover, his sweetheart, his heart’s desire, and by god, he better make me feel it without question by his actions.

The “I’m thinking of you” gestures, the “I know you will like this” sweetnesses, the “I hope this makes you happy” thoughtfulness: I want it all. Maybe it’s a love note full of wonder, him dancing me around the kitchen, that book I wanted hidden under my pillow, my favourite meal cooked and served, candles and a massage, a mix of music he thinks I will like… things he knows I will love and adore. Things that say, “For you, sweetheart, just because…”

If anything, submissive men should be *better* at all of that than their vanilla counterparts because their desire to please is supposed to be core to how they relate. So WTF with the dumb excuses?!

Having had the little rant, I DO think that I have a part to play in encouraging that behaviour if he’s not too sure about it because some submissive men can get bamboozled and confused and lost because of D/s ‘roles’. They get so caught up in ‘not doing the wrong thing’ or ‘being submissive’ (whatever that means) that they lose sight of what’s okay behaviour and what’s not. I’m thinking ‘deer in the headlights’ frozen.

If I am generous (and I am, mostly, I try, despite my ranty rant rantiness), I can see that if I present as being all domlydomdomdomlydominant-grrrr-raawwrrr-control-lead-manage-no-don’t-do-that all the time, he *could* imagine that those kinds of romantic things might be inappropriate or unwelcome. So perhaps if he is shy, unsure, not quite confident, his instinct to do those things could be easily stifled if I don’t seem *open* to it.

Personally, I haven’t struck this problem of submissive men not being romantic, which is why I’m adamant that it’s not a D/s problem, but an individual thing. If a man who is seriously interested in me isn’t wooing the crap out of me with romantic shit (how’s that for poetic presentation? Heh…), making me feel courted and special and adored with all of those thoughtful little gestures of romance, then it’s going nowhere because I lose interest.

That means that I end up with men who I know are not just willing and able, but delighted to give me that once we are in a relationship.

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35 Comments

  1. It does boggle the mind that submissive men wouldn’t be more lovey. I know the men who have wanted my Domme side (I switch, but rarely with the same person), have always been super worshipful and sweet. I love your ranty rant rant…

    1. Me too. And it’s always more complex than I can possibly present of course, but I expect super sweet and if I don’t get it, it’s not going to work for me.

      Thanks for liking my rant rant rant *smile*.

      Ferns

    1. I don’t know you so maybe? Or maybe the type of guys you like just happen to have a higher number who are bad at romance? I know I like guys who are geeky and nerdy and sometimes (not always) that can translate into a little clueless on the romance end. Education works! lol

    2. Ha! The easy answer is ‘yes’, BUT I don’t think it’s that simple.

      You obviously really like the guys you pick (duh!), so there is a lot of *other* stuff that you find attractive, so ‘wrong guys’ is not really right. ‘Wrong guys for romantic gestures’, YES!

      If that’s not okay (that is, you end up feeling unappreciated), then you either have to prioritise it early and weed out the men who aren’t making you feel special in that way OR you have to bite the bullet with the ones who you like who *aren’t* doing it and say you appreciate and want that kind of attention (just in case you are somehow signalling that you don’t enjoy it or want it).

      But, I will say this: To me, romantic gestures fall out of genuine desire to make you feel happy/loved/cared for. I GET that some men are not wired that way and may need a hand, but *most* men have a natural instinct to make the woman they are interested in feel that way. That has nothing to do with *anything* D/s (though arguably submissive men should be all over it).

      It seems to me that if a man is NOT thinking ‘How can I make my woman happy today?’, I don’t think you can get him there by force of will. But if that’s the case, I would ask, ‘Why the fuck isn’t he thinking that?’ *Even if he doesn’t quite know how to go about achieving it, why isn’t he thinking it?!*.

      I don’t know why this topic makes me all arm wavey but it does *laugh*.

      Probably because I have seen enough of you to wonder WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH THOSE GUYS?! I mean, lots of men would pluck out their own eyeball for the privilege of trying to make you feel special and loved and cared for with all sorts of sweetnesses!! Arrrggghh!!

      Ferns

  2. Very well said gorgeous! I don’t believe being submissive and romantic are in any way related at all. In fact, the feelings of a submissive are wanting to please her so one would assume it would increase the chance of being romanticized.

    “The “I’m thinking of you” gestures, the “I know you will like this” sweetnesses, the “I hope this makes you happy” thoughtfulness: I want it all.”

    Ugghh! Seriously when are you going to make that clone of you for me?!! I love giving women these things. It is a big part of who I am whether submissive or not. I am at my happiest when she smiles because I see that I have showed her how much she means to me. You know what sucks though? Believe it or not there are women who don’t respond and don’t want such things. I have found myself beyond frustrated with past relationships who have given me nothing but negative feedback for being romantic.

    Thus, I don’t think anyone acting all Dommly McBadass has anything to do with them not being romantic either. If anything I would say it is because women have shown their independence more these days that some have had the experience that it isn’t okay with every woman so they just don’t know.

    Respectfully,
    mysticlez

    1. ” Seriously when are you going to make that clone of you for me?!!”

      *laugh* I’m working on it!

      ” there are women who don’t respond and don’t want such things. I have found myself beyond frustrated with past relationships who have given me nothing but negative feedback for being romantic… because women have shown their independence more these days that some have had the experience that it isn’t okay with every woman so they just don’t know.”

      That’s a really valid point, but I’d expect them to be smart enough to figure it what sort of things she likes as they got to know her.

      And that goes to my point of there being some responsibility on the dominant to communicate what they like if they aren’t getting what they want.

      The submissive might be dying to do x, y and z and be unsure/scared etc.

      Ferns

  3. My theory is, submissive men think we aren’t like the rest of women, in fact, many of them can’t see beyond our “label” of Domme. I need all the little gestures too, I need all those things that make me feel they truly see me as a human being.

    PS.- I love your point of view, I feel very identified with many of your posts :)

    1. “My theory is, submissive men think we aren’t like the rest of women, in fact, many of them can’t see beyond our “label” of Domme.”

      I agree. I think there are some submissive men who feel that way for sure, and some who don’t even realise *themselves* that they feel that, but they do.

      I remember in the early days of talking to my last submissive being stunned to find that he honestly and truly believed that he didn’t have the power to hurt me. He somehow thought that he was ‘not that important’ to me, that I was somehow ‘playing with him’ (versus actually forming a strong attachment), and therefore no matter what he did, I might get irritated or annoyed, but NEVER hurt.

      Until he hurt me.

      I still remember his shock over that fact that I was hurt. And this was a very sensitive man who *never* treated me like some uber Domme, and STILL he somehow held me apart from ‘other women’.

      So very strange what happens in the minds of some.

      “I love your point of view, I feel very identified with many of your posts :)”

      *smile* Thank you!

      Ferns

  4. I think that many submissive men are getting their information about D/s from those crappy Femdom websites that have nothing to do with real relationships, so when they meet a “real” Dominant, she is seen, by them as nothing more than a live version of the porn they’ve been looking at.

    1. I think that’s true, but I’d say that those ones are really easily identifiable because they behave poorly from the start.

      Mostly any Domme with a bit of experience can pick them a mile off.

      I think this issue is a step well beyond those guys, though there is an argument to be made that there are parallels that can be drawn to a ‘not to be treated like normal women’ view.

      Ferns

  5. That’s an interesting thought. I actually tend to be the romancer/aggressor/mighty hunter in most aspects of my relationships, and while it’s also nice to get some of that energy back on occasion, I’m good with the dynamic mainly being in the other direction.

    Very simply, he is beautiful and he is worth romancing, because I own him. He doesn’t think nearly as much of his worth and beauty as I do, but that’s why I’m the dominant.

    1. “I actually tend to be the romancer/aggressor/mighty hunter in most aspects of my relationships, and while it’s also nice to get some of that energy back on occasion, I’m good with the dynamic mainly being in the other direction.”

      It is interesting how this plays out because I separate ‘romantic gestures’ from ‘being the instigator’, though I think it can work from either side.

      If I was to put a D/s filter on it, I tend to see romantic gestures as rather submissive which is why I have the ‘well, if he’s about pleasing me, he should be all over it’ view.

      Of course by ‘all over it’, I mean ‘figuring out how to make me happy’, which gives a hell of a lot of leeway on ‘what romantic gestures actually look like’. For me, him going to the gym to make himself pretty for me is romantic as fuck! Flowers, not so much.

      But I CAN see that some might consider it the dominant’s role as the aggressor to be instigating romantic gestures as part of chasing/wooing/hunting.

      I also think that for many submissives, your approach would be the dream, and maybe the ones who don’t do any of that are waiting for the dominant to step up to it. It totally doesn’t work for me, but I can absolutely see the mindset.

      Ferns

  6. This is a really valuable post. I think it highlights the point that relationships are a lot more than D/s. And nurturing them takes more than the D/s actions.

    I am bad about romancing. But it is not just my submissiveness or a warped view of what a D/s relationship is garnered from fantasy web sites.

    I say that because I know from experience it is in all of my relationships: professional, friendship, etc. There is something internal, or part of my personality type, that makes me feel like doing those things will seem insincere. Even when I know that is not the case, I have this knee jerk feeling it will.

    So I have to think about it to do it. And it has gotten easier over time, especially when I see the effect it has. And it is way easier with a lover than with a friend or work mate.

    Great post, well worth reading, should be read by lots of people.

    1. “There is something internal, or part of my personality type, that makes me feel like doing those things will seem insincere. Even when I know that is not the case, I have this knee jerk feeling it will.”

      Ahh… interesting.

      You know, I think a lot of people have the wrong idea of ‘what romance is’, so they feel this way also.

      Some people think romance is about what they see on TV: Candlelit dinner, flowers, chocolate. It’s not. It’s ‘what will make her feel happy/loved/cared for? Imma do that *because I want her to feel happy/loved/cared for*’.

      Having said that, I think I understand what you mean because as I wrote that, it felt kind of manipulative:

      “I’m going to do this thing so that I can manipulate her into feeling this way”.

      Oh. My. God. What a minefield that leads to!! *laugh*

      That leads to this:

      “Well, I can never do anything that I think will make her happy because then I’m just being manipulative…”

      Holy hell. Did you just open this rabbit hole, greg?

      *head explodes*

      Ferns

      1. Who, me? Nope, not me.

        *Looks around and whistles softly*

        Well, maybe. *Gets ready to run if need be*

        OK, yes, I did. But I didn’t realize it was a rabbit hole! I was just innocently explaining my warped mind.

        I had not thought of it the way you have framed it. I do not think about it as being manipulative, more redundant and not needed, so then insincere.

        But your way of framing it does fit, and maybe that is part of it.

        The good thing is I recognize this about me, so can work on that, knowing that my feelings are inside me and not reflective of what others may feel.

        And when I make myself do it, and see the reaction, then I get better at ignoring my automatic feelings and realize they are leading me astray.

        I used to be a lot worse….

        1. “And when I make myself do it, and see the reaction, then I get better at ignoring my automatic feelings and realize they are leading me astray.”

          *smile* Good!

          I mean once you start thinking that being thoughtful and letting the one you adore know that you adore them is insincere, you are in big trouble!!

          Ferns

  7. @Mistress Lilyana: Yes, in all probability. I get inundated with requests from “submissive” guys who do not fit my definition of submissive. In my book, they are kinksters (which is FINE but call it what is it).

    There’s a huge difference in those that are in it for the kinky bits only (and/or fantasy fulfillment – see @slapshot’s comment above) and those that are seeking a true D/s relationship.

    It goes both ways – I know plenty of dominant women who don’t want a relationship, don’t want the romance. They just want someone to scene with, someone to do the yardwork then disappear.

    I’m not assigning relative worth to one approach over another. But, if you’re seeking a relationship, stick to your guns. What Ferns said is dead on (as always).

    That being said, on this side of the pond at least, it takes a lot of weeding out the “wankers and wananbes” to find the boys who “get” D/s the way I do. It can be a frustrating search to find one who sees D/s as a relationship and seems to value making a woman happy more than his kink needs. Finding a guy like that who lives near me, I’m actually attracted to, and actually compatible with can feel like finding a needle in a haystack.

    1. “Finding a guy like that who lives near me, I’m actually attracted to, and actually compatible with can feel like finding a needle in a haystack.”

      Tell me about it!

      Ferns

  8. ” If a man who is seriously interested in me isn’t wooing the crap out of me with romantic shit ” ~~~ I love this!

    A dominant woman is still a woman. Whisper to the woman in me and kneel to the dominant.

  9. ” If a man who is seriously interested in me isn’t wooing the crap out of me with romantic shit ”
    Ummm if they are giving you shit no matter how romantic it might be worth reconsidering things

    Just saying like

    Coug ;)

  10. I have found that like you said it ‘should’ be, that it really is with the submissives I have known. And the nerds & geeks are FABULOUS at it (I disagree with whomever stated they weren’t up there).
    My vanilla first husband used to always give me gifts of jewelry. After 20 years the dude never realized I hardly wore the stuff and didn’t care a thing for it. My first submissive once gave me a set of gorgeous quality fine painting brushes….I swooned.
    My slave & husband once made me cry by giving me the last tuna sandwich (long story). He also gave me an Nook on our first wedding Anniversary – and it was because that theme is ‘paper’ and I read all the time – and it was just the best gift ever.
    Not that it is all about gifts. They are just easiest examples. Mine does thoughtful swoon-worthy things on a regular basis.

    Here is a good example – he was about to start his gig teaching and had been so busy. I had been busy at work…just no time. I was bitching about how dirty the bathrooms were (not his fault, he really was too busy) – how not one of the housekeeping places had called back…and just generally whiny. I was flat out in a bad mood over the state of the house. He dropped the very important stuff he was working on, locked himself in chastity, handed me the key…and got to scrubbing the bathrooms naked. It changed the mood immediately (and I would not have asked him for this at this time)….it turned a sour evening into a very hot one – and with a clean house to boot! Absolute best at getting me out of a bad mood.

    *happy sigh*

    submissive men are freaking fantastic. And smart ones ARE romantic in the ways that will make their dominant happy. It may be flowers for one, paint brushes and clean tubs for another…. lol

  11. As you say I think this is less of a D/s thing and just an oddity of where we are at in society in general with understanding roles in relationships. I know with myself I have found it hard to find women who actually enjoy romance and being romanced in the way that I like to romance. While flowers, chocolates and jewellery are nice, eventually I feel that they are sort of banal gestures expected in a relationship and generally boring and impersonal. When I want to show someone I care I buy them a monogrammed journal to write in, grab them a book I know they’d love, or some album, book a surprise weekend somewhere they’ve never been, surprise them with a gorgeous dinner cooked from scratch followed by wine and a sensual, sometimes even tantric yoni, massage. But it’s hard to find a woman who actually appreciates truly thoughtful expressions of love. Too often I find my caring nature, telling a woman who’s had a hard day “hey baby why don’t you relax, lie down and I’ll clean up,” etc., gets misunderstood as some sort of chauvinism. As though I am declaring a level of incompetence or stepping on their lovely independent toes.

    I often feel like I’m the monster in Joyce’s Araby, going out of my way to please someone who doesn’t understand my thoughts and feelings in trying to be a caring thoughtful lover. And I do wonder if its just that we haven’t quite worked out romance in the age of equality. I mean it’s certainly only been less than 100 years so we likely have a long way to go in finding a balance. But I have literally booked surprise weekends at romantic getaways only to be told that that sort of behaviour is controlling as we should make plans together so that she can have input into the details. Ultimately I’ve discovered that most women I’ve met and have been with are very lousy at being romanced. They desire it but when they are confronted with it it is so unusual that they don’t quite know how to accept it nor react to it. Ultimately if just love to find a woman who sees the thought process that is behind my actions and loves me for wanting to please her and be romantic and thoughtful. Finding a woman like that is way harder than it sounds – trust me. Is it that too many women are used to “treat em mean and keep em keen” sorta guys and when they meet someone who loves them openly, without games, heart on the sleeve they just aren’t used to it? Or am I just doing something wrong and, perhaps, have an antiquated idea of how to love and romance a woman?

    1. I do not want to give the wrong impression here – you do seem romantic, but…
      there is little in your response that is about the woman. It is about what you do, what you consider romantic. I wonder if those actions or gifts were tailored to the specific woman. Your ideas are great, but paying attention to what the woman would consider romantic is the most important part. For some it might be cleaning up, for others it could be a pair of cartoon Wonder Woman underwear, for yet another it might be a weekend away, for another she might prefer you run her errands and let her have some solitude. One might love a lovingly created dinner at home – another may not care much about food, so it wouldnt do anything for her. There are a million things women consider romantic…you have to tap into what THAT woman considers romantic. It is not your gestures that are going wrong – it is your reading of that woman. The only thing antiquated is that you have pre-conceived ideas….and hold them up really high (guessing from your abundance of adjectives when describing the massage & dinner). You sound almost snottily proud of these things. Which means they are about you and the skills you hold dear – not about what she would want.

      I really am not trying to be mean – I just think you could use a little guidance concerning the focus of your attentions….away from ‘your skills & what your consider romantic’ – to the specific woman whom you are trying to woo and what she may consider swoon-worthy.

  12. Thanks but I think you’ve missed my point, though perhaps I gave the wrong impression. I have always tailored things in my romancing always towards that specific woman. I have never done things for the sake of doing them or to show off my skills – my whole point about preferring how I prefer to not merely just buy a woman roses or some standard jewellery was directly speaking to the fact that in all my romantic endeavours I have tailored them towards a specific woman. For example I dated a woman who while I was with her lost her grandparents in an accident. In speaking about them with me she went on about this wonderful book of fairy tales they gave her as a child that she had lost years and years ago and that it was one of the nicer memories of an otherwise sad childhood. So I went and tracked down a first edition copy of a fairy-tale pop-up book that was a hundred years old and full of the most gorgeous drawings. And when I gave it to her she just looked at me and said “what are you doing? why would you give me this.” It was all deer trapped in headlights and she just put it aside and as far as I know never really looked at it.

    As I stated earlier most of the women I’ve known in my life just have no idea how to react to being romanced. I’m not saying that that is particular to all women, just that in my experience it’s been that way. I’ve had women end relationships because I’ve been too thoughtful and they openly admitted that they just didn’t have the emotional ability to be as caring to any other human being as what I am towards them. I’m still extremely good friends with most of my exes and I’ve found that they tend to prefer emotionally unavailable men, whereas I’m someone who wears my heart on my sleeve. Basically I’ve come to believe that the whole “nice guys finish last” thing is absolutely true and the only time I’ve had anything resembling a successful relationship with a woman is when she’s older than me and already has spend 10-15 years married to some uncaring asshole of a guy and has now come to her senses and is looking for a nice thoughtful caring guy to actually romance her.

    Anyways what I’m saying is that it’s not just that men don’t know how to romance, but that women often don’t know how to be romanced and how to react to it. That was my basic point and if you read anything else into it I do apologize, I wrote that previous comment quite hurriedly on my phone and hit send way earlier than I should have. My bad.

    But thanks for your response. I absolutely agree with the principles you’re espousing. More care needs to go into romancing than just a dozen roses and a box of chocolates – that’s nice every now and then but if you really want to show a woman you care about her, you have to listen to what she wants and needs. And with everything in life, simpler is better. Grand gestures of romance are great but as you said, simple gestures, especially those done consistently, are really what ought to make someone feel loved, appreciated and adored.

    1. awww…damn, that book thing was fabulous. You just happened to have met the wrong women then. It really can be that simple.

      I remember reading my slave’s blog before we got together. He has all sorts of theories as to where he fit in or why things had gone wrong. I think he fell in love with me when I simply told him to stop whining…you just hadn’t met the right woman. He was nearing 40 when I finally showed up.

    2. @ahumblescop:

      if you really want to show a woman you care about her, you have to listen to what she wants and needs

      Yes, this 100 times.

      Romance is exactly that.

      I think some men eschew ‘romance’ because they think it’s a cliche, but in that case, they aren’t thinking about *actual* romance, but the thoughtless gestures of ‘movie style romance’.

      Ferns

  13. I’ve never been with a man who wasn’t romantic with me. There are dominant men who will serve you, vanilla men who will lay everything at your feet and submissive men who will tell you that it’s their mission in life to teach you (the Domme) all about romance.

    But before they are any of that, they are lovers; men who love and care for you. Romance isn’t a by-product of dominance nor submission. It springs forth from love and caring. It’s what makes a man who never buys flowers, bring home flowers one day. It’s what makes a man who hates the holidays scour the mall to bring home something thoughtful and whisper in your ear that he’s starting to enjoy Christmas because it’s family time with you.

    It’s much easier to bare your back to someone who will flog you, than it is to bare your heart to someone who may crush it. Romance goes both ways.

    1. “Romance isn’t a by-product of dominance nor submission. It springs forth from love and caring.”

      *smile* Yes! It’s someone sincerely looking for ways to express it.

      Ferns

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