Why are we kinky? And does it matter? | Men Submit

Why are we kinky? And does it matter? | Men Submit.

Neat little article on Men Submit, but the part that jumped out at me was this:

The other day I was reading a post by a guy who had made two attempts to draw his wife into a female led relationship.  In his first attempt, he tried to get his wife to do a list of kink activities to him.  She told him that she was not interested.  So he regrouped and decided to go for a more service-oriented position, thinking it would appeal to her.  However, when he brought it up again, he also told her that he thought that he was submissive because his mother was over-bearing.  At which point she told him to go and deal with his mommy issues and then come to her when he was in a healthy place and they could talk about his submission.

I highlighted that sentence because I don’t think that this gets addressed – or even discussed – often enough. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen an introduction on a web board or a blog in which the writer mentions something to the effect that s/he is a sub, dom, rubber fetishist, etc., because of… [some prior event or situation].

It’s a common stereotype that men with high-powered jobs in which they have a lot of pressure seek out sexual domination in order to have a period in which they are out of control. That makes sense, until you think about the guys who are clerks, or working part time, or who are students who are *also* submissive – or at least, self-identify as such.

Again, I really think that we may need to find another set of words to describe what we feel or do in these kinds of sexual dynamics, if only to avoid the cultural baggage that goes with using those descriptions.

And as to the example above, I wonder if it’s not the case that the man felt he had to come up with some reason to explain why he wanted an FLR. Because, you know, you can’t just be kinky for no reason, right?

I’m seeing that this kind of thinking perpetuates the idea that kink presupposes some kind of psychological or emotional damage; a kinky person is either “perverted” or is somehow damaged and must find solace or comfort in participating in those kinks. Despite the fact that people who indulge in kink play have been found (on the average) to be more emotionally healthy than non-kinksters, there is still so much of a cultural stigma that kinksters believe it of themselves. What will it take to change that?


And speaking of kinky, here’s some kitchen play.

Why are we kinky? And does it matter? | Men Submit

About Tom Allen

The Grey Geezer Dauntless defender of, um, something that needed dauntless defending. Dammit, I can't read this script without my glasses. Hey, you kids, get off my damn lawn!
This entry was posted in BDSM, Fetish & Kink, Sexuality & Relationships. Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to Why are we kinky? And does it matter? | Men Submit

  1. endymion says:

    As always, an interesting read. (Not that I could answer your ending question).
    The picture, though, was what really took the crown😉

  2. BSB says:

    As far as I’m aware, the ‘high-powered jobs’ stereotype is true to a certain extent – that’s a certain drive to submission and there are others. So not every guy who is submissive is like that, but it is worth noting that that is a motivation for a fair few submissive men.

    I think there’s a false dichotomy at work in these discussions a lot of the time. There’s the ’caused by trauma’ idea which is not very accurate, as many people have testified. Then there’s the ‘born this way’ ‘naturally kinky’ idea which I’ve come across a lot from people who actually practise BDSM.

    The reason I call this a false dichotomy is because I’m of the belief that everything about us is due to a combination of nature and nurture. With BDSM in particular, while I can believe you might naturally lean more submissive or more dominant, the set of practices associated with it come across to me as being a product of culture/society. I don’t think anyone is born with a fetish for forced feminisation, or chastity devices. That’s pretty clearly related to certain tropes about masculinity and sexuality. However, as soon as you say it’s caused by culture/society/childhood etc. it sounds like you’re saying it’s triggered by a traumatic event. So basically, I don’t think we’re all born this way (I’m a dominant woman btw), but I don’t think that means we’re all ‘damaged’. Just influenced by different things.

    In terms of how you can remove that cultural stigma, i think that’s already happening to a certain extent. Most of my vanilla friends know about my kinky activities, and while they’re probably more open-minded than your average group of people (very bleeding heart liberal), they not only tolerate it and accept me, but can see how what I do isn’t a million miles away from their own sex lives in some respects. As people become more and more aware of BDSM (insert obligatory 50 Shades reference), they become less freaked out by it.

  3. Tom Allen says:

    While you make some good points, you also mention this:
    As people become more and more aware of BDSM (insert obligatory 50 Shades reference), they become less freaked out by it.

    In that story, Christian Grey is a dominant who got that way because… wait for it… he was emotionally damaged as a youngster. So, again, the image of BDSM that ends up becoming somewhat mainstream (it’s going to be a movie, for crying out loud) is that of a guy who is “sick” in some way. Anna proves her “healthiness” by resisting, and by questioning. Oh, and by trying to “understand” him.

    This is the kind of thing that worries me; will the upcoming movie just reinforce the idea that kinksters are that way because of some pre-pubescent trauma?

    • Faile says:

      A lot of ‘Mills & Boon’ style fiction relies on someone being ‘rescued’ from something by love, in 50 Shades it was immediately clear that BDSM was that thing.
      I know the bookshelves are full of copycat clones these days but I haven’t dared look at any of them, so I’ve no idea if any of them show BDSM as a positive thing.
      It feels so negative to me, as someone who is in the ‘always been kinky’ camp, I hate the thought that BDSM is presented as being broken. Yet, I too was brought up (by society) to believe vanilla is normal, so I can’t help sometimes wondering what is wrong with me, even though I know that I have always felt this way without any trauma to cause it.
      How can we expect the vanilla world to accept us, when we have a hard time accepting ourselves?

  4. Greg says:

    I’m one of those “high powered” stereotypical men that your post describes, and have been wondering for years why I’m into being dominated. It does seem to makes some sense — yet, I’ve always felt that being out-of-control in different ways heightens my sexual experiences.

    Unfortunately, I’ve never really found a woman who will dominate me in bed. I’ve offered, and even told women that there would be fringe benefits like making me clean the house or whatever on the side. They just weren’t that kinky.

    In general, my greatest desire is to please a woman sexually. I’ll given them oral sex for example for hours if they let me, or whatever else they desire.

    My desires are thing like:
    – Overall being told what to do in bed and punishments for non-compliance
    – Made to pleasure a woman for hours on end
    – Foot worship
    – Orgasm denial during sex, and for days, weeks, etc.
    – Bondage (the times I’ve done this have be awesome)
    – Light S&M, though I don’t want any scars or lasting marks

    Yes, I’ve considered hiring someone, or phone BDSM — but frankly I’m a bit afraid of the types of women who would do this in person. And phone BDSM just sounds like a way to keep me on the phone longer and make money.

    Anyway, my girlfriend and I broke up not to long ago — so maybe the next woman … I hope🙂

  5. slave_nemo says:

    Tom, I love this post. My wife (Mistress Ivey) and both love your blog. But this particular post hit home for me. I didn’t know much about kink or what it meant to be dominant, but I noticed that I always seemed to choose submissive woman in my life (my first two wives can attest to that).
    Of course, I was looking for a submissive when I found Ivey. Those who know some of our history know that she was my sub/slave and I was her Master for the first several years of our marriage. She complained one day that she often felt like being dominant, but was afraid that she might actually hurt someone because she had a sadistic streak. Take my word for it, it is a REAL sadistic streak!
    I taught her what it meant to be a Dominant and how to reign in her sadistic tendencies. Then I found her someone with whom she could play. Eventually, we moved away and she was need of another sub. Not being able to find a satisfactory sub for her, I volunteered to be her sub for play.
    She grew and became a very good dominant. I, on the other hand, quit looking for other subs and just became her permanent sub.
    When I look at porn on the internet, and that’s not as often as I used to, I look at male dominant stuff. Why? Because I have always been dominant. It’s what I enjoy the most. But I still play the sub for her whenever she wants it.
    I never needed an excuse for being kinky. It’s just the way I am and have always been. I don’t believe that I am unusual in that fact. i suspect some people try to find a reason for their proclivities, but not me, and I don’t know that past events have truly shaped all the people who claim they have.

    nemo

  6. C says:

    Kink is like Drano. It is caustic, and it seeps into everything. This is my admittedly negative experience speaking, but it is my experience. We instinctively know to keep it to ourself if the desire comes on us at an early age. It becomes our defining quality, our identity. Even if we never ‘come out’ it is like a lens we view life through, a constant coloring of our perceptions. Of course we try to explain it, rationalize it, justify it. There has to be some acceptable reason that we are the ‘others’ in polite society. 50 Shades is just the latest dalliance with kink. That book comes along once every 20 years or so to titillate the normal world, then disappears just as quickly when the fad passes. I’m sorry to be such a downer, and I’m sure there are some well adjusted kinksters out there, but this urge or drive or whatever you call it has been no bouquet of roses for me.

  7. rusty says:

    I always just assumed that the stereotype of sub men working in high position came from professional dominatrices who charge a lot so their client base is mostly wealthier men. working class men can’t pay hundreds of dollars for a hour of spanking and there are no cheap “street walker” type pro-dommes.
    as for the idea of domineering mother causing it, that is pretty funny if you know how many sexually sadistic serial killers have explained their own urges the same way. I think there are at least as many men out there who had controlling mothers who now take the bitterness and frustration out by domineering women.

    while specific kinks tend to have to do more with culture and personal experiences, the basic urge to dominate probably is strongly tied to inborn temperament. same goes for sadism, maybe even more so.

    but I agree with last poster too, being kinky is not all sunshine and rainbows, especially if you are a submissive man or a dominant woman because then you belong to a minority and minorities are rarely treated well in society. I wonder if there was a pill that takes away your kinky side, how many people would take it? I know for me it would be a blessing, as like so many people, I’ve had to come to the realization that finding romantic or even sexual fulfillment is made impossible by my perversion.

  8. I think our society is too eager to place any behavior that is considered to be outside of the norms in the neat little box labeled “the result of something bad,” and I don’t think that’s going to change any time soon. Personally I’ve always thought the question of why someone is kinky could easily be flipped to apply to why someone is not: Why do some people settle into a vanilla lifestyle, even though they admit they aren’t fully sexually satisfied and what they’d *really* like to do is perfectly legal and harmless? The answer to that is probably the same as it is for explaining why SOME people are kinky: some are definitely the product of psychological or emotional damage, but not all of them. The nature of the individual, their perceptions and their influences throughout life all play a part. The influences needn’t be bad though.

    As for your question about the upcoming movie reinforcing the false belief that all kinksters are somehow damaged; yes, I think that’s exactly what it will do for a lot of people, particularly for those who have never seen or read anything else about BDSM. In my opinion 50 Shades is a poorly written piece that doesn’t promote the practice in the best of light. The BDSM crowd might recognize the subtle nuances of the relationship, but it’s unlikely that many others will. With an example like that on screen, it will be far easier for the mainstream to deny their own urges by telling themselves that it’s wrong to want to do those things than it will be for them to admit that they simply don’t have the guts to say to hell with other peoples’ opinions and have sex the way they want it. To bad the producers haven’t chosen a better book to base a movie off of.

    ~M

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