why do (some) women dominate (some) men?


Why do women dominate guys?

There are few studies on the subject of women dominating men (and many of men dominating women). Most articles on the subject are about dominatrixes or ProDommes since they are easily identified by their occupation.  But many couples in #bdsm lifestyles are not dominatrixes.  We must generalize dominance to include lifestylers and ProDommes.

In an article published by Stephen Betchen in Psychology Today, he lists popular origins of the dominatrix:

1. Adolescent curiosity

2. An association is made between an object of pain (e.g., whip) and excitement/pleasure

3. The association continues to be reinforced throughout a person’s life

4. Lack of maternal attention

5. Lack of maternal affection

6. Little to no control, sexual or otherwise

7. Sexual abuse

8. A need for money

he summarizes from his clinical experience of interviewing dominatrixes that:

[many of a dominant’s] histories confirm a significant loss of power or control in their families of origin. This loss may have come in the form of abuse, sexual or nonsexual, or in the context of feeling powerless or “without a voice” in the family.


If include the lifestyle dominants, the need for money can be motivated by business interest or needs of circumstance. I include sexual trauma with “sexual abuse”.

In Betchen’s article, he lists facts and fallacies about dominatrixes. I present those that address the wider aspect of domination:

5. It’s usually more about power and control than sex

13. Most…receive personal enjoyment

14. Figuring out and meeting a submissive’s needs is the main high for many dominatrices

15. Another high is the level of trust given to them by the submissive

16. Reducing the submissive to a state of erotic helplessness is also a high

17. There is some evidence that the dynamic creates a strong physiological bond (i.e., oxytocin)

19. Activities vary: not all dominatrices inflict physical pain; some use only verbal humiliation

22. Some dominatrices believe the opposite gender is truly inferior

24. Struggle is appreciated because “bending the will” of the [submissive] is a high

27. Pushing or stretching a submissive’s limits is enjoyed

31. Dom or sub preference will depend a lot on one’s nonsexual personality

32. Some people can be both dominant and submissive but most prefer one over the other

33. There are organizations centered on a dom/sub culture

M.Farouk Radwan lists reasons [why] some women control men or their husbands:

  1. The Woman was raised by a controlling mom – if a woman was raised in a house where her mother was the dominant and controlling figure in the family then the girl will grow up assuming that a woman should control her man
  2. Insecure women might become control freaks – an insecure woman might try to feel secure by controlling her environment and this includes controlling her husband
  3. Masculine protest and controlling women – these women turn into control freaks in order to assume the superior role which is the role of a man
  4. Controlling women choose weak men – the woman who wants to control a man will look for a man who can easily be controlled







Of course, women who assume the dominant role are not usually alone in their effort. Many men encourage them. Bechten contends that:

the literature has found that [masochistic] men usually initiate this type of [bdsm] lifestyle, and try hard to convince their female counterparts to join them.

For example, a guy can hook up with someone who shows signs of dominance in other aspects of their personality in hopes of persuading them to dominate them sexually. In some relationships, the dominant initiates or lays the groundwork for domination of their partner. If either does not succeed, the relationship may fail [because] relational success [does not have] the matchup (such as dominant/submissive roles) of interests. 

G. Seidman predicted that people who are high in sensation-seeking…would be especially likely to prefer dominant partners


The social pathologist  describes the high cost for women who prefer to be dominant in a relationship:

[dominant women]  are incredibly successful in nearly everything they undertake …except their personal lives.

What is the most predominate reason that some women dominate guys in a relationship?

The most common reason a person takes the dominant role in a relationship is to assert control. Women who have experienced sexual abuse, discomfort or trauma may want to control the sexual activity of their partner. Women who have lived with economic hardship might want to control the financial aspects of their relationship. Women who are generally regarded inferior by the common culture might want to control how their partner respects them (at least in the privacy of their home).




About dave94015

interested in alternative relationships, visual artist, erotic romance writer and reviewer of erotica, drug rehab clinic intern - early 30's
This entry was posted in bdsm-culture, femdom, prodomme, relationships, submission, women, women-v-men and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to why do (some) women dominate (some) men?

  1. sex line stories says:

    I recognise some of this is me… interesting

  2. thesecretaspieblog says:

    I disagree with the label ‘dominatrixes’ a lifestyle female dominant is called a mistress or domme. Not to be confused with a prodomme or dominatrix. These women dominate for income.

    • dave94015 says:

      I mostly describe people who dominate as dominants whether in a lifestyle or a business b/c there are some who do both but generally a ‘dominatrix’ or ‘prodomme’ dominates mostly for business (although she may have a personal ‘lifestyle’ slave).

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