Meet as equals Do you 'meet as equals' or 'establish roles from the outset'? dating, singles, women, men, american, personals

Meet as equals
Internet / Dating


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 1. Intro
If you want a relationship in which the man is in control, what does this imply in terms of how you should behave when the two of you first meet and get to know one another? The answer to this question (which was asked on another internet forum recently) may be perfectly obvious to most folk, but apparently it is not obvious to all, so let's look at the arguments. If you are a single woman who has met one or two ‘dominant’ men, you will probably have had what I'll call for short, the OYKB experience, which is to say, you meet a man, and the first thing he says to you is, “On your knees, Bitch!” “I beg your pardon?!”, you say, hoping that you have misheard him – and then you instantly regret your response, because he repeats himself, and with more vigour.

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 2. D/s relationship
It might not be that particular thing that he says. It might be any number of other orders. He might order you not to speak, or to address him as “Sir”, or he might even order you to perform a sexual act. The idea is that in a relationship, he wants to be in control and he wants you to accept that control, so he expects you to demonstrate your willingness to accept that control from the moment you meet, or before, if you ‘meet’ online. Similarly, many women take the view that if a man does not start bossing them about as soon as they meet, he doesn't have it in him to control them, and they move on to the next man. You may have read on other forums statements like: “If you meet as equals, you won't be able to see one another as dominant and submissive respectively, and you'll only ever be egalitarian vanilla friends.” or “If you want a D/s relationship, it is important to establish the roles from the first meeting.”

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 3. Real and lasting relationship.
This argument sounds crazy. For a start, the woman in a relationship is in no way less than the man, and as such, she should not be treated as such. She is, in a deep sense, thoroughly equal. Secondly, if you want a relationship – which implies a deeply committed, sexually-exclusive relationship as opposed to something more casual – the rational, safe, and sane thing to do is to get to know the other person thoroughly before any power exchange takes place. A relationship does not spring into life ready formed from the first moment; it takes time to develop. It starts from no relationship, when you first meet, and gradually, if all goes well, the two of you together jointly create connections and form a relationship, and it continues to evolve over time. There is no shortcut to creating a real and lasting relationship. Acting as though there is a relationship when in fact there can't yet be, amounts to faking a relationship. This is fine if that is what you want, but if what you actually want is a real relationship, acting the role of a person in a relationship where none actually exists will be unsatisfying for you, and you will not want to ‘establish the roles from the first meeting’, you will want to ‘meet as equals’ (if we accept this problematic terminology for the sake of argument for a moment).

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 3. Two relationship issues
But what about the argument that if you ‘meet as equals’, you won't be able to see the other person as anything other than a conventional egalitarian person with no feeling for dynamics? This concern is conflating two issues. The idea of ‘meet as equals’ could mean presenting yourself as a person with a preference for conventional egalitarian relationships, but in this context it does not mean that at all; it means not presuming a relationship where none exists. The fact that you may be a woman who wants a relationship in which the man is in control does not make you a person with the superhuman power of creating a relationship instantly, any more than the same is true of a man who wants to be in control in a relationship. Wanting a relationship with a dominant man does not imply that it is natural or a good idea to act as though there is a power exchange relationship from the moment one meets. One of the things I look for in a man is respectfulness, and some sense of civility and courtesy. I want a man who, as well as being thoroughly able to handle me, knows how to behave in polite society. I want a man who does not presume my consent where none exists. I want a man who has the patience to give me time to get to know him really well at arm's length, and who will not act the part of my lord and master unless/until I give him that right.

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 4. A man is self-control
When a man starts ordering your average single woman around as though he already has that right when he doesn't, she finds that highly presumptuous and inappropriate behavior and wonders why the man wants to act as though there is a relationship already in existence when there plainly isn't. I personally am instantly put off by such bizarre behavior. The last person to whom I would want to give control would be someone with bad manners and a casual disregard for consent. Another thing to look for in a man is self-control. If a man has the ability to control himself, he may well have the ability to control the woman too. And if a man is going to have real control in a relationship, he had better have self-control. If in early meetings a man appears to lack self-control, patience or the ability to treat the woman with respect and civility, a woman might quite reasonably conclude that he is not the man for her.

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 5. A power exchange relationship
‘Meeting as equals’ as opposed to acting as though there is a power exchange relationship where none exists does not in any way imply pretending to be someone other than you are. Women don't act as though they prefer an egalitarian relationship, they just don't submit to any old Tom, Dick or Harry, and they would not want to be with a man who would expect that. And similarly, men don't act as though they would not want to be in control in a relationship, they just don't presumptuously take control in the absence of a relationship in which they have the right to do that. Behaving naturally instead of playing a role really doesn't result in not being able to see the other person as dominant, etc. These things can be expressed in subtle ways and through civilized conversation. For some people, one subtle way men give the impression that they do not want a conventional egalitarian relationship is through small and appropriate acts of chivalry. A man can be very respectful and even a bit shy and deferential, but if he opens the car door for the woman, walks on the outside as they walk along the road, and gently leads the conversation, then even though he does nothing overtly dominant, a woman can sense that he would want to be in a non-egalitarian relationship. A man can be kind and gentle and sensitive to a woman's wishes, and behave absolutely appropriately and not at all presumptuously, and yet still – just through the way he carries himself and little things he says – convey his preference to wear the trousers in a relationship.

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 7. Traditional dating etiquette
When the two individuals are in the restaurant, the man can ask the woman what she would like to eat and drink, and then order for her when the waiter arrives. When they are walking down a flight of stairs the man can walk down first, and when they are walking up the stairs he can say “Ladies first” and walk behind her, in accordance with traditional etiquette. When they know one another better, they might talk about or allude to what they want in a relationship, and it is perfectly possible to get a sense of a man's dominance just from the expression on his face as he talks about this, and it is perfectly possible for a man to see that a woman is responding positively to the things he is saying. As the two get to know one another over time, the man can, instead of telling the woman what to do as through he already has her consent to do so, express a wish for her to whatever it is, saying something like, “I know I have no right to insist that you do this [say, get a taxi home instead of walking through an unsafe neighbourhood] but if or when you are mine, I would insist.” Or he can say that if the two of them were in an established relationship, he would require X or not permit Y. If the two individuals are moving towards a relationship in which there will be an element of physical control, the man might sometimes say something like, “I know I do not have your consent yet, but when I do, I will take you in hand for this” or “If you were mine now I would physically stop you doing this.” (What a man actually says in practice will depend on the two individuals and the unique relationship they are creating together. These are just possible examples. In some cases the two individuals naturally engage physically from an early stage.)

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 8. Final Words
And likewise, through the way she responds positively to the early subtle gestures on the man's part, and later, to the counterfactual statements the man makes (as in the paragraph above), a woman naturally shows her preference to be in a male-controlled relationship. If a man is too insensitive to pick up, through these subtle positive responses, a woman's desire for a Taken In Hand relationship, he is probably too insensitive for this kind of relationship. The idea that to establish a power exchange relationship it is necessary to act as though a power exchange relationship is already established is balderdash. To create a real and lasting relationship, there are no shortcuts. You have to each begin from where you are, and gradually develop a relationship from there. A genuine relationship has no pre-written script to follow: it is unique to the two of you as individuals, and the more the way you interact arises out of the unique individuals you are, the more of a relationship you actually have. Playing a role instead of behaving naturally may create the semblance of a relationship but it is no substitute for the real thing, and in some cases the faked intimacy and acted ‘relationship’ actively inhibits, sabotages or prevents altogether the development of a genuine relationship. So if you have been worried by pessimistic statements to the effect that if you don't act the part of a person already in a power exchange relationship with the person you have only just met, the two of you will be unable to see one another as anything other than persons having a preference for a conventional egalitarian relationship, I hope that I have managed to set your mind at rest.

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Opgericht: 05-01-2022
Gewijzigd: 03-05-2023
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