A few days ago, Vesta wrote a post about spanking from her point of view as a submissive. She talked about why she enjoys it and the benefits it provides her. It was an excellent piece of work, and I highly recommend you read it. However, it occurred to me that it might be smart to put together a look at spanking from the other side, from the dominant perspective. While it might not be quite as introspective–in many ways, I think the dominant side of things is less complex–it will hopefully provide at least a little interesting information.
IMHO, there are three reasons why a dominant might like to spank their partner. Not all three need apply to every dominant–only the first reason I’m going to cover is universal across all dominants. In my case, only two of the three apply, and others may mix and match various combinations of the three according to their individual predilections. It’s possible that there might be additional reasons I haven’t thought of, but if so, I’d suggest that they are minor in comparison to these primary three.
- Spanking Reinforces Dominance/submission: The act of spanking one’s partner creates a strong Dominant/submissive ambiance in a session, and that ambiance can easily extend beyond the single session into the long-term relationship. I’m using the word “ambiance” on purpose, because it’s important to remember that the spanking is consensual–it is desired by both partners–and I want to distinguish between the “feeling” of dominance and submission a spanking conveys and honest-to-God wife-or-husband-beating, which is not consensual, isn’t fun at all, and should never be confused with a BDSM spanking experience.
In a BDSM spanking session, however, a sort of illusion of Domination and submission is created. The receiver of the spanking must offer themselves for the application of the paddle, and that in and of itself is a submissive act. They endure the sting of the paddle on their behind (or wherever), submitting themselves to pain caused by the action of the dominant. That they may desire this pain makes little difference–the act itself feels submissive, and correspondingly, the act of spanking them feels dominant. Through this, the roles the two partners play within their relationship are firmly emphasized. From the perspective of the spanker, giving a spanking helps them to feel more Dominant, and from the perspective of the recipient of the spanking, being paddled helps them to feel submissive.
- Spanking Excites the Submissive Partner: While not every submissive partner enjoys being spanked, many (probably most) do, and for lots of submissives, the act of surrendering their upturned bottom for a good paddling can be extraordinarily exciting. This is probably mostly related to the feeling of submission it engenders I decribed in the first reason above, though there is a subset of submissives (the masochists) who find pain itself a turn on.
From a dominant perspective, though, the ability to excite one’s partner is very important–it’s another area where control may be demonstrated, and another lever to use to exert control. More than that, because spanking has a connotation of punishment, using a spanking to excite the submissive partner feels to the dominant as though they are compelling the submissive to become excited almost against their will (or at least that they are arousing the submissive’s animal nature and causing it to overcome their conscious thoughts and taboos).
- Spanking Causes Pain: Just as there is a subset of submissives who enjoy the pain of being spanked, there is a subset of dominants (the sadists) who enjoy causing pain in others. The pain of spanking isn’t usually very serious (there’s a reason why it has historically been used to discipline children), but it’s enough to appeal to this crowd, especially as an appetizer. If performed sufficiently energetically and/or with the right tools, the pain of spanking can become more severe, but in that case it begins to cross the line over into whipping or flogging, and travels beyond the scope of this discussion.
As I said above, only two of these three reasons apply to me. I derive benefit from the first two, but not being a sadist, the last one does little for me. The first two, however, carry a powerful charge, and it’s always fun to bend Joy over my knee or over the edge of the spanking table to redden her rear end.
It’s certainly possible, by the way, to engage in a Dominant/submissive relationship without spanking or any aspect of corporal punishment taking place. If Joy didn’t actively enjoy being spanked, for instance, I wouldn’t do it, despite the D/s benefits it provides. Dominance may be established in other ways, and submission as well, and we would take advantage of those instead. Fortunately, however, Joy does enjoy it, and therefore spanking’s become a valuable tool in our BDSM toolbelt.