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Mean Girls "you can't sit with us" meme except it's labeled so Regina is snarling, "You can't sub with us!"

Submissive Dating Mistakes

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I decided to dissect the top 3 most common and annoying submissive dating mistakes I experience as a prodomme and sex educator after one of my friends got a random IG message:

“You’re stunning, I’d love to come over to submit to you, and dress and pamper you before you go on a date with another man.”

If your first question was, “what’s the catch?” you’ve asked the right question. My friend also asked. He had no response to that at all, he ignored the question and just asked if they wanted to talk on the phone. You can write that down right now as a red flag for getting your time wasted.

So it goes. I watched them putting forth the effort to chat with a dude who won’t even answer or acknowledge their questions about what the catch is, and eventually pointed out, that’s actually part of what the catch is:

This man’s submissive fantasy isn’t about my friend’s happiness at all.

It’s not about what my friend desires, for STARTERS, because they personally are someone who identifies vastly more as a sub. Despite that, they were rudely thrust into the role of “Miss” by a dude who immediately started using a gendered honorific without asking for consent or their pronouns.

As a professional dominant and curvaceous femme, I’m super familiar with this song and dance.

Perhaps you are too. Perhaps you, too, stopped answering the endless barrages of “hey”, shitty explicitly sexual threats, fetishizing “compliments,” and requests to “serve you” being sent with presumptuous wording on inappropriate platforms.

Or perhaps you, like my friend, are in the camp of, “it could be good if it works”. Mayhaps you have yet to become jaded by years of people making you their dom and talking to you like it before you even speak to them directly for the first time.

After beginning prodomme work in the mid ’10s, I opened myself up to the possibility of dating submissive people in my personal life. They’re not all that difficult for me to find, especially if my dating profile mentions kink. I don’t know what it is about me that screams, “I’ll make you wear frilly underwear,” but my friends and partners for decades could hear it screaming before I even realized I was interested in domming.

Unfortunately, what I found on Tinder back in 2017 was nothing but people making these massive submissive dating mistakes every time they approached me. Finding a sub who wanted to genuinely connect with me as a person was extremely rare. Most people, predominantly cis men, who chatted me up on Tinder were quick to proclaim they’d NEVER pay for sex, they wanted me for free. I never asked them to pay, that’s not what I use dating sites for. It always came up in conversation after they asked what I did for work, and I said sex work.

When I met someone who actually wanted to sub to me to make me happy instead of just because the idea got him hard, that was a HUGE contrast to the scores of submissives who hit me up in the years before and since.

Subs make plenty of basic online dating mistakes, but there are some key submissive dating mistakes they also fuck up with me and other dominatrixes:

  • calling me “Miss” first thing (strike 1),
  • describing me as a mistress/woman/queen (strike 2),
  • and would refuse to actually put any effort into having a conversation that wasn’t about THEIR fantasy of “submitting to me” (strike 3, you’re out, now hit the bench and stay there, you scrubs).

Let’s start from the top of the shitlist.

Strike one: “Hi [honorific]!”

If you’ve never spoken to me, you should never dump an honorific in my lap without me giving you permission to call me that. That’s just common sense and manners, and if you expect a dominant to play with you, many of us expect you to find and use some manners.

Yes, I enjoy D/s. Yes, I read The Story of O, too. Yes, I also enjoy protocol. But for fuck’s sake, if that’s your only guideline for how to interact with the kink community, stop sending messages right fucking now. First, go read this real world kink education like what these folks offer all over the fucking internet, yes these are separate links off the top of my head.

A private FetLife DM is not a high protocol play party — there is 0 reason for you to enter my DMs spewing slash speak and honorifics at me if I do not explicitly welcome or command it. Especially using honorifics I specifically do not use (which I conveniently make a point to mention in my Fet profile.)

Discussion of honorifics, titles, and roles happens BEFORE you get to use those things on me, not after you’ve misgendered me with an honorific I don’t use, and I correct you. You’ve seriously stepped on the toes of BOTH my damn feet in one fel swoop. I don’t respond to that shit unless you cough up money immediately.

It doesn’t necessarily have to be a formal contract before we whip out the honorifics, but using an honorific on me without my permission is a really basic consent violation that tells me you don’t have a good idea of how consent should work.

Do I want to do the labor of teaching you that 1v1, for free, in a DM for the umpteenth time in my life in the last five years?

… Or do I want to blow you off and go fuck somebody who wasn’t so presumptuous as to objectify me and violate my consent before I even responded?

God, what a tough choice. /s

If you drop in and call me “Mistress” before we’ve talked about literally anything else, you’re out. I have 0 reason to speak to someone who fetishizes me before we converse. I won’t answer you.

screenshot of a mass market paperback cover of The Story of O with a curvy person in lingerie and stockings reclined across a chair, resting their forehead against their hand dramatically. Sugar has edited the title to read: "Story of 0 reasons to reply to you" and has added a text beside the model's head reading, "God damn, I have a headache now."
NYT bestseller 2021

Strike 2: Misgendering me with an honorific

To be clear, “Mistress” and “Miss” were never honorifics I’ve really liked or used regularly, even when I was cisquerading in my original findomme persona, so this mistake has always been insulting.

My Fetlife profile contains information about honorifics and pronouns I do and do not use; despite this, every single stranger who sends a first message talking to me like I’m their dom also conveniently ignores the parts of my profile that clearly explain my pronouns and how NOT to misgender me.

Screenshot of Sugar's very wordy and organized Fetlife profile which includes a paragraph that specifically states their pronouns (they/them) and some of the common honorifics they use, then at the bottom there are links to notes where all the separate information about them have been allocated for profile length and readability.
Pretty comprehensive, actually.

They’re also ignoring the parts of my main profile that say, “Don’t leave sexually-explicit comments on my photos,” “Don’t send me a friend request without a message,” and so much more.

They’re ignoring this because their desire to submit to me is transactional — they want to slake their fantasies of submitting by using me as a dominant body, but don’t ACTUALLY care about my wants, needs, and happiness.

I have no use for a friend in my life like that, much less some clown who shows up begging to lick my boots.

4-panel clown meme. Panel 1: person applying makeup, labeled "Good evening Miss". Panel 2: Person applying makeup to one eye and clown lipstick labeled, "i want to sub 4 a woman like u." Panel 3 has the clown's make-up finished and a wig being added, labeled, "i got so hard thinking of tongue-punching ur fartbox on my gam-gam's casket, here's a pic *winky emoticon*". Panel 4 has the clown in their full regalia, big red nose and all, and is labeled, "...Miss? ...Y didn't U reply Miss??? ...Pls respond"
not even once.

Which brings us to…

Strike 3:

You’ve proven you don’t actually give a shit about my wants from square one by nonconsensually objectifying me, and trying to engage in D/s AT me without my consent or input.

You’ll also typically find, if you become the target of such behavior yourself, that these people rarely have a desire to pay you for your time-consuming efforts at domination, should you endeavor to slake their thirst.

In my experience, welcoming advances from people who feel entitled to your body, time, and labor typically results in them falling upon your inbox like a slavering dog every time they’re horny. So many refuse to properly engage with me in any other capacity beyond the barest minimum required before they think it’s cool to start talking about their fantasies again.

This is one of many reasons I am a sex worker and require people to pay me if they won’t even have a real conversation with me. My skills and time deserve recognition and recompense. The submissive who disrespects that has no place in my world unless they buy it in pre-negotiated, pre-paid blocks of time.

Two messages feigning the barest answer to my questions about your day or interests before you start talking about wanting me to drag you around on a leash (and buttfuck you) doesn’t even begin to meet my needs. My core need as a dominant is that you engage with me as a human being, not merely project your sexual fantasies onto me and disregard my time, expertise, energy, and risk.

If you’re gonna be a fucking dog, at least learn to perform a trick instead of humping my leg all day.

So, to any of you, of any gender, who wonder, “Is this stranger’s offer to submit to me too good to be true?”


But you can learn to figure that out yourself by asking yourself and them a few questions:

What’s in it for me?

Seriously. Ask them.

And ask yourself:

Do you even want to boss them around?

Perhaps you think having your bath drawn and clothes and accessories laid out sounds time-saving or luxurious; I agree, receiving service can be both. My nesting partner is a service sub. She helps me with my access needs, my time-saving needs, and my whims.

She never made any of these mistakes with me, though, and that’s how we got close in the first place. I met my nesting partner outside the sex and kink world, and she never once nonconsensually objectified me, misgendered me, or violated my boundaries to become my submissive.

So why should an Instagram stranger be your submissive, even for a day?

What do you get other than potential convenience from their help?

How much are they going to expect you to micromanage them? It takes long enough to prep for a date without having to order some tool to draw my bath and explain exactly how it needs to be done, but some submissives want that much micromanagement (and I am not the dom for them).

And what’s more… what are they ACTUALLY offering to do to help you?

If this dude came over and just masturbated watching my friend in the tub, they probably would not be into that.

So ask…

What exactly do you expect to happen while you are in my home?

Walk through this thought exercise with me if you don’t understand why.

If someone you don’t know offers to pamper you, run you a bath, and dress you, but they’ve never said a word to you about anything else… why would you trust them enough to have them in your home for that?

Sure, you could meet them at their place, but that’s incredibly risky. You could get a room somewhere to change the risk profile of your meetup, if someone can afford it, but who is going to pay? And even if you go to a hotel or motel, do you have means to defend yourself in that room if the phone is unplugged and nobody is in the rooms beside you to hear cries for help?

Exploring those options with a stranger is an awful lot to undertake, and while I know survival sex workers who’ve met clients in all 3 places and worked to mitigate risks and be as safe as possible because they needed the money… you’re meeting this stranger for free, and they’ve pitched you a “service” that seems too good to be true.

For all you know, they could be casing your place while you bathe. Maybe they’ll rob you while you’re out. You just met this rando on the internet.

Unless you plan on letting them watch you bathe? Helping you bathe? Do you want this stranger to scrub your back?

Is what you’re willing to do something that lines up with what they want?

Or are you going to be uncomfortable when someone you just met expects to sit on the edge of the tub and watch, for free, while you clean your ass?

Maybe you’ll ask a friend to be present to help keep an eye on you and the stranger, for increased safety. Is the stranger ok with it? Do you have a friend who’d actually do that for you?

Does the stranger plan on brushing your hair? Administering your skincare or cosmetic routine? Would you be okay with them doing those things for you if you only just met? Do they even actually know how to deal with your hair type if you’re willing to let them do your hair? Do they know how to apply eyeliner to another person without sending you on a date with two hugely inflamed, leaky eyes?

How are you going to get to your date on time if you’re preoccupied entertaining this assclown?

Your Takeaway

See, without more detail, knowing how involved they expect to be, how long they think they’ll stay, and what they plan to do while they’re with you… this is a weird fucking idea for a stranger from Instagram to pitch and expect you to agree to.

And part of the reason it’s odd is that they’ve simply chosen you to enact a role in their fantasies. You’re probably not even the first or only person to receive a DM and offer like this from them, maybe even not the only person within the hour to get that message, verbatim.

That fantasy isn’t about you. They’ve gone so far as to presume you’d enjoy it without even knowing them. They assumed you’re ok with hearing their desire to do it to you within the first few messages. They are doing this TO you.

Sex that doesn’t revolve around nonconsensual objectification should be FOR YOU, TOO.

It is a collaborative effort. Even D/s! It’s why I ask every submissive about all their fantasies and desires: because I want to create an experience for them too, since I’m doing kink WITH them. Not to them.

This stranger’s fantasy isn’t about doing kink WITH you. They liked how you looked – it’s like the interpersonal equivalent of them cutting a picture of your face out of the newspaper or a magazine and pasting it over the body of their favorite swimsuit model to jerk off to.

Objectifying you as their dom before they even know you is one of the most common submissive dating mistakes I encounter, and it’s a huge turnoff to dominants. I don’t know if it’s because of sub frenzy or a lack of education, but it leaves everyone who tries it lonely in the end, and many D-types have no patience left.

I don’t know you all, dear readers, but I know nobody deserves to be treated as an object without opting-in. You deserve a sub who wants to tongue-punch your fartbox because you wanted them to – not because you’re the only person who replied to their DM.

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1 Comment

  • January 14, 2022 at 8:28 am

    […] then thinking I was a service top and doing online prodomming, then realizing I’m a switchy, dominant badass, with the right submissive and personal connection. I’ve offered a long list of things that […]


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