If you’ve been a reader of Sex and the 405 for any period of time, you know that on Tuesdays, we run the diaries of Daisy, a woman on a search to discover herself as a submissive in Los Angeles vast BDSM playground. This week, we bring you the view from a different angle — that of a dom in the same space.
It’s a Friday, just after midnight, several years ago. I’m looking down at a head-turning blonde who’s kneeling on my Persian rug, wearing nothing but a black leather collar that’s locked around her neck, connected to a gleaming jeweled chain leash that has fallen to the floor between her perfectly-formed B-cup breasts. As I take in the view, a single thought echoes through my mind: “How did I fuck this up so badly?”
At age 25, having just moved to L.A. and started to explore the local BDSM community, I already had a few years of experience as a dominant in serious relationships, but this was my first time playing with a submissive in a more casual context. Kat and I had already spoken at length about her need for total control and strict discipline, but she was a few years younger, brand new to BDSM, and we had only just met.
The evening began fairly casually with our favorite HBO show, a nice bottle of Malbec, and the best pizza in Hollywood. When it was playtime and I told her to kneel and strip, Kat kept the first date tone going with some jokes and nervous laughter. I decided to let that slide until she felt more comfortable. Ditto for when she kept forgetting to call me “Sir,” which is a fairly standard rule in BDSM play.
I was just as accommodating when she told me to wait while she kept self-consciously fixing her hair, and by the time I had her chained to the front of the couch for some blowjob training, she was rolling her eyes and making ‘whatever’ faces at the instructions.
At this point, the wheels had come off, and I knew it was my fault. But how had I gone so far off track?
Comedy of errors
My plan for the evening was focused more on making sure this sweet and inexperienced 20-year-old didn’t have a bad first experience than on providing her with an amazing one. I wanted to earn her trust by demonstrating I’d always respect her limits and keep her safe, never pushing her further than I knew she could go. Problem was, by letting so many little things slide, I allowed her to dictate the pace and tone of the entire session — exactly the opposite of the power dynamic we both wanted.
While dissecting the smelly corpse of this sorry effort, I remembered an article I had read about something called the Broken Windows Theory. First introduced in the 80s, it asserts that serious felonies like murder, muggings, and illegal drug sales are much more likely to occur in areas with a high prevalence of petty crimes like vandalism and prostitution.
This correlation suggested to many politicians and criminologists, including the then-mayor of New York City Rudy Giuliani, that the perceived tolerance of petty infractions emboldens people to commit more and more serious crimes. This gave Rudy an idea: what if we were to crack down on petty crimes all over the city — arresting hookers and public pissers, painting over graffiti, and fixing those windows as soon as they’re smashed? He directed his chief of police to do just that, and by the mid-90s, this policy of “zero tolerance” contributed to the steepest drop in crime rates ever recorded in a major urban area.
New York City, once widely considered “ungovernable,” soon became the safest metropolis in the world. Like Rudy, I immediately recognized the applications of zero tolerance to another high-crime area: my living room floor.
When Kat accepted my invitation for a Round 2, I was determined to lay down the law. We started with dinner and drinks at a nearby restaurant. When we got back to my place, I told her to kneel and strip before I even closed the door. I tied her arms snugly in my favorite position, folded behind her back with no way of protecting her girl parts, then I read her the riot act.
I told her she’d speak only when spoken to, always addressing me as “Sir.” She’d keep her eyes forward, her legs spread, her pussy fully exposed and accessible for my use. She’d adjust any aspect of her appearance only when instructed. If she had hair in her mouth or trapped in her collar or gag strap, I explained, she’d just have to fucking deal with it.
Then I asked her if she understood. She nodded. Woops — mistake number one.
I immediately grabbed her hair, pushed her face to the floor, held it there with my boot, and started spanking her. Hard. First, she moaned. Then she whimpered. When she started squirming, I told her to hold her ass perfectly still or I’d switch to the paddle. Her ass turned pink, then red. Before long, her whimpers turned to sniffles, and I knew I had her right where I wanted her.
Grabbing the back of her collar, I tugged her trembling body back up to the kneeling position and asked her again if she understood my rules.
I nodded my approval, then reached down between her legs for a humidity check. Wow, I thought. Mission accomplished. Kat’s performance improved dramatically over the next few hours. She did need a firm reminder from time to time with one implement or another, and as unpleasant as that was for her, I could tell she was as turned on as I was.
Body of work
Michelangelo once wrote, “In every block of marble I see a statue as plain as though it stood before meâ€¦ I have only to hew away the rough walls that imprison the lovely apparition to reveal it to other eyes as mine see it.”
As I’ve known ever since my first kinky experiences in college, the greatest challenge and thrill of BDSM lies in chipping away at the conditioned habits and attitudes of a girl whose body and sensations I fully control, ultimately revealing her inner slut in all its obedient and insatiable splendor. Every girlfriend, submissive, and casual play partner since then has taught me something valuable.
From Kat, I learned that the full realization of a Dom/sub dynamic is the result of a thousand decisions, each involving seemingly frivolous yet critical details, meticulously integrated into a work of art far greater than the sum of its parts. Still, it would be egotistical and incorrect for me to take much credit for the outcome. I didn’t create Kat’s inner slut, it was there all along. All I did was chip away the excess, and both of us enjoyed the process as much as the finished product.
Drew Thomas (@DrewT323) is a dom living in Los Angeles.