Okay, I admit it, I read the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy and it turned me on. I was swept away by the story.
The play scenes in the movie were hot, yet pretty tame. And James Dornan is freaking sexy! Behold…
Is it how a Dominant/submissive relationship actually works? Not at all. Was it the best written series ever? Hardly. Was Anastasia how I want to be seen as a submissive. No way!
The woman who introduced me to the lifestyle told me that it wasn’t a guidebook to a healthy, kinky relationship, and yet, it was still titillating. I have to agree.
When there’s dominance and bondage involved, it’s hard for me to be logical and behave myself. All my good judgment goes right out the window along with morality and ethics.
The truth is that the stories held my interest even though I wished some things were different.
I’m often asked by my vanilla friends where Fifty Shades missed the mark. This is the humble opinion of someone who is not only a submissive in a 24/7 relationship with a Dom, but also from someone who writes erotica. So here it is, a subs point of view of what’s wrong with Fifty Shades of Grey.
Submissive women are rarely that overtly submissive.
Like, at all. Subs are badasses. We are tough cookies with a brave and adventurous streak. Our brains won’t shut up and we are more than capable of handling our lives and the lives of others when it’s called for. Most of us are intelligent, witty and thoughtful. How we express our submission is diverse and evolving.
The submissives I know are incredibly strong women with careers, degrees and brains. Some of them can even kick your ass. You have been warned.
In many cases, it takes us a long time to come to terms with our submission. In the lifestyle, you can see people discovering their submission in their forties and beyond. It isn’t something you take lightly.
“I don’t make love. I fuck… hard.”
“I’m not a hearts and flowers kind of man, I don’t do romance.”
Christian Grey, Fifty Shades of Grey
Dominant men are not all about fucking hard.
Sorry, Christian Grey! The truth is that many Doms are proud to call themselves romantics. They are not one note lovers. They can be harsh, strict, loving, tender, mean, chivalrous and challenging; sometimes all at once.
Mind you, they do love to fuck hard, but they can also make slow, sweet love to you. That’s the true Fifty Shades of a real-life dominant.
Seems silly to state this, but I feel I must. Not all Doms are billionaires with shredded abs. They’re not all young and good-looking either. They’re just people and come from all walks of life and come in all shapes and sizes.
We need to understand that in fiction all the characters and their relationships are blown out of proportion for our entertainment. They are pure fantasy. Everyone is young and beautiful and their relationships are explosive and passionate all the time. Reality doesn’t work that way.
Doms and subs all come from abusive childhoods.
This is misleading because so many of us have experienced abuse in childhood in one way or another. Take this statistic for sexual abuse: 1 in 4 women and 1 in 6 men were sexually abused before the age of 18 (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2006). This means there are more than 42 million adult survivors of child sexual abuse in the U.S. alone. That’s staggering! And there are other forms of abuse on top of that: emotional abuse, neglect, endangerment and the list goes on. Because Doms and subs are human beings, many of them have come from tough childhoods just like many vanilla people. The difference is that we are usually more aware of what the abuse meant to us than the rest of the population.
Sometimes we use play to work out some of these issues and sometimes we don’t. I believe it’s crucial for those of us in the lifestyle to look at our childhood and do whatever we can to heal our wounds and understand ourselves. If we do this, we can make sure we are making healthy choices, especially since our play can sometimes have elements of danger.
BDSM and Dominant submissive relationships are the same thing.
First, what does BDSM stand for?
- B: Bondage
- D: Dominance and/or Discipline
- S: Submission or Sadism
- M: Masochism
BDSM and a Dominant/submissive relationship can work together or independent of each other. It’s important to note that BDSM porn usually gets it incredibly wrong and focuses on the most extreme situations in the BDSM spectrum; often with no regard to safety, consent, reality or sanity.
D/s (a shortcut for a Dominant/submissive relationship) is about who you are, BDSM is about what you do during play. Some Dominant and submissives don’t play or they play in a limited way. And some people that engage in BDSM want no part of a D/s relationship.
Please do not look for Doms online if you are just starting out. There are a lot of predators out there that will pitch themselves as Doms, but are just horrible sick people.
Even if they are real Doms, you aren’t ready to play yet and there are different Doms for different subs. Trust me, you need to slow down and pace yourself.
So how do you get started as a submissive or Dominant?
If you live in a medium to large city, get involved with the local community and attend events. Munches are lunch or dinner in a public place with your regular vanilla clothes were you can talk to all sorts of people who have been in the lifestyle for a while.
Christian Grey is the Best Dom Ever.
Lawd, no, he isn’t! He is manipulating, controlling and a terrible communicator.
Remember at the end of the first book (or the end of the first movie) when Ana asks Christian to show her his worst? And he does!
No responsible Dom is going to do that. Period.
He does have an awesome playroom, though. That’s what our dungeon wants to look like when it grows up. Hehehe.
Final Thoughts on Fifty Shades of Grey.
Even though I just wrote 1,000 words on what is wrong with this series, I would be remiss not to give kudos to E.L. James for her marketing savvy, storytelling abilities and for tapping into the dark fantasies of women.
The trilogy may not be accurate or the best written series of erotica, but it was engaging, funny, sexy and sweet.
Yes, the relationship was dysfunctional, but so are most romantic and erotic relationships in fiction. They’re written to turn you on, they are not meant to be a blueprint on how to lead your life.
With all its flaws, I hope Fifty Shades of Grey lets people be more accepting of a lifestyle they don’t understand. That would be a good thing for everyone.