Interview: Miss Kitty Stryker – Exploring the World of FemDom

October 13, 2014
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Interview: Miss Kitty Stryker - Exploring the World of FemDom
Miss Kitty Stryker (Image: Michelle Yoder)

I remember the first time I met someone who had a kink. I was in my early twenties and we were in bed when he told me clearly, “You can spank me with the palm of your hand anywhere except across my face.” I was a little taken aback, especially since I hadn’t asked him. He was from New York and I thought to myself, “Wow, these New Yorkers are so sexually advanced!”

I was then introduced to the world of the cat o’ nine tails and using a little bit of pain for pleasure. I’m sure we’ve all had some kind of experience initiating us into the world of kink – some (like myself) have merely dipped our toes in, and others have jumped headlong into the deep pool that is Kink. While the pool is large and has many aspects to it, there is none quite as murky as the waters of FemDom.

Never one to let you flounder in your quest to explore your sexuality, we here at BaDoink would like to dispel all the misinformation out there. I spoke to the exquisite Miss Kitty Stryker of Purr Versatility and Consent Culture on the subject and boy did she set the record straight. If you’re not familiar with Ms. Stryker, she’s a force to be reckoned with, “reinventing porn culture by exploding one tired trope at a time,” as she says on her website. She’s been in the scene for six years – four of which she was a submissive – and has trained houseboys and sissy maids. 

Ms. Stryker talks to us about what exactly FemDom is and how, if one should be interested, could one get into the scene…

Could you explain what is FemDom? What’s the difference between a Mistress and a Dominatrix?

FemDom is short for female domination, the lifestyle/practice of submitting to an authority that identifies as female. I’m sure others would have their own ways of expressing the difference between a Mistress and a dominatrix, but I would say simply that one, Mistress, is an honorific, and one, dominatrix, is a profession.

Why would one want to be dominated? What is the psychology behind it?

Why would one want to be dominated? Well, why would one want to have a good cry watching a romance film? Why would one enjoy their muscles burning after a workout? The reasons for submissive desires are as varied as the people who possess them, but generally it boils down to a sense of fulfillment. For some it’s erotic, for others it’s deeply satisfying to someplace deep inside them. For me, as someone who likes to be on both sides of the paddle, being dominated can feel like a vacation from the control that I have in my day job, in my relationships, and it quiets my head. It’s like a form of meditation.

As for the psychology behind it, there’s been some research into why people enjoy the physical aspects of kink, like spanking or bondage. It typically boils down to, “it feels good”. I suspect that people enjoy being dominated because it’s relaxing to have someone else call the shots, especially when they’re making a commitment to take care of you and your needs.

Who (or what type of personality) usually get into FemDom as a submissive?

There’s a variety of people who get into FemDom. There’s not really any tells for it. Some people may be successful businesspeople who feel relief when submitting to someone else. Some just generally prefer to be submissive in their day-to-day life, and their sexual desires are an extension of that. Some are men who feel guilty about male privilege, and they feel that submitting to a woman is a way to make it up to us.

That said, it can also be a reflection of that privilege. I find that there’s a lot more men who identify with the fantasy of FemDom than the reality – they want someone who not only will dress in sexy clothes, but also take charge of their lives. That puts a lot of pressure on a female dominant to perform that role in a way that’s more male fulfillment than expressive of their actual desires. Submissives who are invested in what their dominant wants as much as their own kinks are prized… true of any other kind of sex, really!

Interview: Miss Kitty Stryker - Exploring the World of FemDom
Miss Kitty Stryker (Image: Courtney Trouble)

There seems to be a big misconception that being into FemDom as a submissive means you might be mentally disturbed. Can you help clear up this misconception?

There’s some research on whether an interest in kink has a root in some psychological trauma, and they haven’t been found to have any correlation. The studies have not been particularly extensive, but reports of troubled childhoods are as common among kinky people as they are with the rest of the population, so it seems unlikely they’re related.

HOWEVER, I also believe that many behaviors get wrapped up into “BDSM” that are actually unhealthy – things like codependency/dependent personality disorders. Communication is key, as is self-reflection and making sure the interactions are mutually beneficial.

What’s your opinion on how to get FemDom more accepted in the world?

I think it would help if examples of female dominants weren’t restricted to professional dominatrices in media. FemDom isn’t always sadistic, or sexually focused, or performative – most people wouldn’t even recognize the FemDom relationship between my partner and I, because it’s pretty subtle. That said, I also think it would help if we recognized female desire as a force of its own. A lot of the time, kink is seen as something men are into and women tolerate – something that many women would debate hotly, and rightfully so! Never mind the simple fact that not all women (or men) are heterosexual, of course. 

What made you become a dominatrix? Perhaps the psychology behind it too?

Money. Straight up. I enjoyed having kinky sex, and I liked having a variety of lovers, so why not get paid?

Interview: Miss Kitty Stryker - Exploring the World of FemDom
Miss Kitty Stryker (Image: Isabel Dresler)

How do you play with fantasy, desire and fetishes?

Well, one of my lovers is a submissive through and through, and is new to kink, so we take it slowly. We explore various sensations and role-plays, cuddle and talk about it afterwards, and build a road map for what sorts of things we enjoy together. Another lover is more of a switch who is more toppy with me – we don’t really role-play, but he’s pretty creative and experimental, so we try new toys together or see what sort of semi-public sex we can get away with! Yet another is dominant most of the time, but submissive with me – she enjoys service and taking care of people, so our BDSM is mostly around that with occasional rough sex. I think that the best way to play with fantasy and desire is to remain flexible, to continually be open to trying things, and understanding that what worked one time may not work another. Communication is the best lube!

How dangerous (or safe) is this? Have there been any cases of people getting hurt?

Judging from the emails I get via Consent Culture, all the time. In fact I would posit that one of the more dangerous parts of kink is that many people in “the community” pretend that accidents never happen and that abuse is absent from kink. People get dropped in rope bondage. People do breath-play a little too long. People use a heavy flogger, miss the ass, and hit a kidney. BDSM is risky, as is football, skydiving, and heterosexual sex. That doesn’t mean we should avoid doing these things, or shun people who do them. Rather I would hope that people who have these interests will take the time to educate themselves so they’re aware of the risks and can practice harm reduction.

What can a beginner do to explore this side of themselves?

Personally, I found reading erotica and watching porn pretty helpful. I kept a list of things I found myself gravitating towards and then suggested those things a little at a time to my lovers. Maybe experiment with things that are a little more socially acceptable – light spanking, holding hands down in bed, that sort of thing. Check out guidebooks like “The Ultimate Guide to Kink” or “Playing Well With Others”. For dominants, try “The Loving Dominant”, “The Topping Book”, or “The Sexually Dominant Woman”. For submissives, check out “The New Bottoming Book” or “Erotic Slavehood”.

Studies into kink:

Psychological Characteristics of BDSM Practitioners on NCBI

Psychological Functioning of BDSM Practioners on www.niu.edu

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