Masculine Submission

No greater love has a man than to live his life for the one he loves

Why are malesubs (stereotypically) losers?

I’d like to answer this question (emphasis mine):

But there is a prevalent idea among the kink “community” ( and believe you me, that is a whole other post.) and indeed, within wider pop culture that submissive men are meant to be weedy, ugly, overweight and undesirable losers. Not only does this turn off many women from kink in the first place, because that is what is shown in porn, but it denigrates and isolates the ordinary, and yes, attractive men who are kinky. Why, as Bitchy Jones so brilliantly wrote before me, are submissive men not spending ages in the gym, wearing attractive flattering clothes, taking care of their personal hygiene and generally trying to look hot for women. Surely that’s their thing? Surely, if you’re into women you want to look sexy for them.

First of all, I’m sure that there are a TON of submissive guys doing exactly everything that was mentioned. But we have to recognize that there is a huge gap between guys who openly identify as submissive and guy who are submissive in a de facto fashion. In short, there are a lot of guys who are submissive, but they don’t say that’s what they are, for any number of reasons. As a bit of anecdotal evidence read this thread about how submissive men may not look submissive when they are out and about. (Edited to include this link asking about masculinity in submissive men.)

Beyond that, it is a bit of a chicken-versus-the-egg issue. Plus, some reasons are person and some are cultural. I’m going to address some of the cultural, because I think they heavily impact the personal, and there is very little interplay in the other direction.

The best tool I know for understanding this is the Act Like a Man Box concept. I strongly urge everyone to follow that link and look at the box Charlie Glickman produced that shows the words we use to describe men. Notice that the word “submissive” doesn’t show up there at all; but the words “dominant” and “leader” do. Now try and understand that every second of every day, waking and sleeping, exposes men to this message.

I don’t know how to explain how powerful this is – either you get it or you don’t. I believe that a lot of the homophobia we see among men, and a lot of the powerful social power in male groups, comes from the need to maintain status within this box. If a guy buys into that illusion of manhood – and it is an illusion – then he buys into a lifetime of feeding that illusion first and foremost in his life. Everything he does, everything he sees, everything he experiences, MUST uphold that illusion or it falls apart.

Imagine what it would be like if you suddenly were told that everything you know to be true about your self was actually not true. What would it be like if all of the things that make you you didn’t actually add up quite the way you thought they did? If you are like most human beings; then you’d react with disbelief and potentially anger. You might attack, verbally or physically, the person delivering that message.

Why don’t submissive men hang out in the gym? That’s like asking why fish don’t hang out in the middle of the Sahara. It isn’t a friendly place for submissive men (let me be clear – I’m talking about guys who are openly submisisve…there are TONS of guys who pass as macho but are submissive when no one is watching). That’s the reason why my Fetlife group doesn’t allow MaleDoms to participate…just including dominant men in the mix threatens many submissive men because it puts them (potentially) in a place where they must defend their existence.

Take a look at Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. If a man feels insecure about expressing who he is (security is the second level of needs); then he is incapable of achieving higher levels of existence. A submissive man in an environment that expects him to challenge for dominance is not going to be able to act authentically submissive…and that means he cannot begin to expose his needs for love and intimacy.

So that explains why malesubs aren’t hanging out (publicly) in male dominated places like gyms. So why aren’t malesubs out there on their own, jogging or doing push-ups or whatever? I mean, exercise is FREE!

Again, part of it is that doing those (stereotypically male) things is seen socially as jumping into that box. It’s a de facto announcement that a guy is “going macho” and challenging for dominance. Hey, I saw a guy do fifty pull-ups in the park this summer – and that is a hell of an achievement – only to be told by another guy, “You aren’t doing it right unless you go all the way down!”

I am going to go out on a limb and guess that social disorders and depression are probably higher among malesubs than the general population (I have absolutely NO evidence of this). The reason is that every second of every day, malesubs must decide whether to challenge society’s representation of masculinity or to go along with it. There’s no rule book or guide book for us – once the Act Like A Man Box no longer defines a man, then there is no telling what a man might want or need.

I absolutely LOVE being taken anally by Mistress Delila. It is simultaneously an act of submission and an act of love, and a greater expression of both (for me) than anything else I’ve experienced. And it was that way from the very first time I experienced it. BUT, I had to have Her assure me that it did not diminish my standing as a man with Her. Once I understood that it didn’t, I was able to embrace that aspect of myself.

Submission in men is heavily stigmatized, even more heavily than is dominance in women. As Gloria Steinem said not so long ago, we’ve taught our daughters that they can do anything a man can do, but we’ve not yet taught our sons they can do anything a woman can do. That’s one reason why I am writing about these things. This is the way illusions are destroyed – one myth busted at a time, one stereotype shot down at a time.

Submissive men – the word “men” is the noun in that term. Live up to it. When you do, I think you’ll find the Dominant Women you dream of are not as scarce as you think.

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7 thoughts on “Why are malesubs (stereotypically) losers?

  1. Wow. So I wondered over here from Peroxide’s blog and clicked the link in the sidebar only to find you quoting my own blog. Surreal. Firstly, great blog, it was fascinating to have a thorough response like this from someone who identifies as submissive and I agree entirely with what you say. You have answered my question beautifully. Thank You. Men do need a revolution from gender stereotypes in the same way that women had. It is long overdue. It’s also heartbreaking to think that this is still the case that many men still cannot fully own and explore their sexuality because society deems it “unmasculine”.

    • Tomio Black on said:

      Thanks for the kind words. I think that there is a critical mass building, but so far there is no real leadership. Leaderless groups usually fail, but we’ll see where things go from here.

  2. kinkinexile on said:

    Beautiful post, thank you for putting it out there.

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  5. ettinacat on said:

    And why do people assume that a man who doesn’t have a lot of muscle is unattractive, anyway? I like men who are kind of slim and feminine looking, or if they do have a lot of muscle, I like it covered in a nice layer of fat. The stereotypical ‘macho’ look doesn’t appeal to everyone.

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