by Wry Mantione – NonMonogamyConsultant
I’ve coined the terms Red Dom, Yes Dom, and More Dom.
I’ll explain more as we go along, but first, let’s be clear about this idea:
A Coerced Yes is messy.
A Pressured Yes is messy.
A drunken, high Yes is messy.
It’s not always a consent violation. Sometimes it’s fine. Sometimes it’s great! But it’s a huge risk to take. You have to trust the Messy Yes or you don’t. In order to trust the Messy Yes, you have to be very close with your partners or have clearly established parameters in advance, along lines of consensual non-consent.
Many BDSM folks think of coercion and pressure as seduction and Dominance itself, especially those who have been practicing it since the 70s, 80s, or 90s.
I don’t see it that way. I entered the scene as a Voyeur in 2002, so I’m at the tail end of TNG. I’m an old Millennial. There’s a Generation Gap among those coming into the scene, and their expectations regarding consent.
A large aspect of BDSM is tradition, conservation, maintaining the ways that have been practiced for 30+ years, leading back to WWII era Leather Daddies and leading farther back to 17th and 18th century Femme Dommes and Fin Dommes. We’re in an era of upheaval, regarding retirement and newfound prominence.
Let’s get back to the point… Red Dom, Yes Dom, and More Dom.
A Red Dom will do anything and keep going until you call RED. If you don’t call Red, they blame you. You better know your limits! In its extreme, I’ll give an example…
If you’re a newbie and in subspace and taken to the point of being non-verbal… and the Red Dom goes too far, because you didn’t call RED… o well! Your fault. That’s what Red Doms think, not me.
A Yes Dom won’t do much of anything without a Yes, an OK, a Nod, A smile, a clear affirmation of consent.
A More Dom? I’ve witnessed it primarily among people based in SF, especially Danarama of Kink dotcom. Just from witnessing a few scenes and classes in person at DomCon, he’s been a major influence on me.
I would include Midori in this category as well, as an influential and innovative San Francisco-based More Domme and educator. I’ve only attended 2 of her classes and it changed my outlook forever regarding both rope itself and scenes. She introduced me to Rope Dominance, and the 3 types of scenes that most (all?) scenes should fall into regarding focus and intent.
A More Dom does the same as a Yes Dom, but then stops at certain points, prompting a reaffirmation. Ideally this becomes an arousing game of begging for MORE.
I’ve always intuitively leaned toward being a More Dom, because I fetishize begging, denial, and forced patience as both anticipation and punishment. I’ve fetishized consent itself. I want to hear that “Please, Sir!” or “More, Daddy!” And this includes both pleasure and masochism.
Red Dom, Yes Dom, and More Dom:
All three mentalities have influenced me greatly over the years. Like I said, I was a frequent voyeur in the kink scene since 2002, but not many people realized that. They didn’t notice me, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t notice them.
A lot of people in the kink scene think they met me for the first time somewhere between 2008 and 2011 when I embraced public performance as a Dominant. It was an amusing era to reintroduce myself, to re-shake the same hands and hear the same names again. Partly, it was due to cutting off my Jesus/Rob Zombie/Charles Manson style hair and beard and changing my entire public persona, religion, and self expression. But I digress.
I’ve been exploring the terms Red Dom, Yes Dom, and More Dom a lot through various scenarios. I’m not always perfect about it. I do my best to be a Yes Dom and ideally a More Dom.
The purpose and goal: Dominance with reaffirmation of consent, especially with newbies or people who are NewToMes.
A Learning Moment
A big eye opener was 2 years ago when I gave an unwelcomed hug. This took place at Kinky Salon while I was co-hosting. I was guy #6 in line for the bathroom. A woman came up and gave everyone in line an enthusiastic hug, mutually.
I went in for a hug just like the other guys did. OOPS! She knew them personally and didn’t really know me, just my name, and that wasn’t enough.
She called me out. I apologized immediately, confused and awkward. I didn’t understand the situation, but I knew that she had the right to call me out. I had affected her negatively with my touch. That much I knew.
So I did some exploring of the concept and I’ve since changed how I do hugs. I usually open my arms and say, “Hugs?” But I don’t lean in. I don’t just go for it. And I’m perfectly fine with the hug being turned down for a handshake or no touching at all. If they turn down all touching, I make sure to let them know that’s cool and give a smile and an inviting wave.
I have to give credit to Feenix as House Dom at Bar Sinister, as well. Observing his approach over many years inspired me to take on the mantle of House Dom at various events since 2013, including the aspects of Facilitator, Moderator, and functionally Dungeon Monitor.
Just giving credit where it is due on specifically THIS issue (not every technique, etc).
None of them have officially mentored me. No one ever has. I’m not into the Mentor/Mentee tradition. I’d rather learn from the Scene and my own ideals.
I’ve learned from all of the performances I’ve ever seen and all of the classes I’ve ever attended. I’ve learned not only what to do, but also what not to do. Sometimes things act as cautionary tales, including classes. None of us are official authorities, including me, but merely visible as stage performers and educators.
About Wry: Having gained experience in multiple forms of non-monogamous relationships since 2002, Ryan “Wry” Mantione advocates being well-informed regarding options and alternatives to a hetero-normative, traditional love life, as well as maintaining dialogue with partners.
Wry has featured as a speaker or panelist at the International Polyamory Conference 2015 at Berkeley, SPLA’s Redefining Sex in the 21st Century held at UCLA, Psychology of Close Relationships course at Harvey Mudd College, Infinite Love Community, DomCon LA. Wry blog at Non-Monogamy Consultant.