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Thinking of visiting a professional?
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A visit to a pro can be a very rewarding and enlightening experience if you know what you want, know what to expect, take the time to find a sincere and sensitive psychodramatist, and treat her with respect.
Most people in the Scene are sincere and well-meaning individuals. But there are rotten apples in every barrel, so be aware that you may be unlucky enough to bump into someone who is either a rip-off artist or simply incompetent at what she does. In SM, incompetence translates to dangerous: if you visit someone who doesn't understand the art of dominance, she could end up doing you more harm than good.
You can browse Dominant Ideas for advice and information on all aspects of female dominance. And you can (and should) surf kinky sites on the Net to learn as much as you can about our type of sexuality, and the rules and ethics that consenting adults play by.
At a minimum, before your session with a dominatrix, have a serious conversation to reassure yourself that she understands what you're looking for and respects your limits.
If possible, ask around to see if others know her and respect her. If you don't belong to any groups or have any SM contacts, then you can try leaving a message on UseNet or contacting a group in your region to see if anyone knows her.
Most professionals make connections with the SM scene in their areas. If a pro cannot give you the name of a single Scene person who can vouch for her (very important: it should be someone who knows her in real life, not an "email slave" or people who only know her on-line), then move on.
For your safety, follow these basic ground-rules.
TALK TO HER WHEN YOU SET UP YOUR APPOINTMENT: The phonecall (or emails) you have before your first visit should be meaningful. Use this time to carefully go over the topics listed below. But don't waste her time. If you aren't serious about visiting her, don't keep her on the phone. She is a businesswoman: her time is valuable.
ASK ABOUT HER SPECIALTIES: Not all dommes are good at (or enjoy) all fantasy scenarios. Some prodoms who are fabulous with a whip have little or no understanding of infantilization and vice versa. A good number of prodoms specialize in particular scenes. So when you speak with her, ask if she is familiar with your type of fantasies, and whether she's had experience with them.
BE HONEST: Tell the domme what fantasies you wish to act out in clear detail so she knows what you want and can prepare accordingly. A prodom is well-acquainted with all types of kink, so don't be ashamed to tell her even your deepest fantasies. You're better off blushing a little at the beginning than leaving disappointed.
(If it is your fantasy to turn yourself over to her completely and helplessly, wait until the session actually BEGINS to do that.)
If you don't know what you want, don't call a pro until you've figured it out. Another option is to pay for an hour of talk if you're nervous or would simply like to discuss your BDSM sexuality with someone sympathetic. Most prodoms will gladly agree to this as long as you pay their regular fee.
FEES: Fees are all over the map right now because of differentials both in location (you will generally pay more in a major city than in a smaller one) and experience level. The world's top dominatrices in New York and Paris, for example, may charge hundreds of dollars for a single hour or thousands for a whole day. Generally speaking, however, most professional dominants charge between $150-$300/hour. ( If they have to travel to see you, they will expect you to cover all their expenses. )
EXPECT A FAIR RETURN FOR HER FEE: When you visit a professional dominant, you are paying for a service, and you are entitled to receive what you pay for. This doesn't mean the prodom is yours to boss around (that kind of attitude will probably get you thrown out) or that you can dictate the rules. What it does mean, however, is that by taking your money she contracts to help you fulfill your fantasy to the best of her abilities.
DON'T MANIPULATE: Submissive men have a tendancy to test femdoms by trying to manipulate them. The most common way they do this with prodoms is by arguing about the fee. You can ask ONCE if she ever gives a "special rate": if she does, fine. If not, take it like a man and respect her professional decision. Don't whine about your money problems. If you can't afford her rates, it isn't her problem. Either find someone cheaper or save up until you can afford it.
Similarly, when the time you've paid for is up (whether it was one hour or several hours), do not try to manipulate her into extending it for free. If you do want it to go on, ask if you can pay for more time. If you visit a lot of prodoms you will find that a number of them will give you a little extra time anyway--but that is THEIR decision, not yours.
SAFE WORDS: A pro should discuss safe-words with you before she places a hand on you. A safe word is a word or phrase the submissive may use to stop the SM action when he or she feels it's going too far. Usually the pro will tell YOU about a safe-word. If she doesn't, then it's up to you to ask her. If she doesn't know what it is or, worse, refuses to give you one, something is seriously wrong.
NUDITY: Clients may be nude but if the prodom offers to remove all her clothes or to have sex with you (including oral sex), she is risking arrest (of herself and you) for prostitution (in all states but Nevada). There are exceptions, but most reputable prodoms do not offer sex of any kind with clients, for legal reasons.
HEALTH: Discuss any and all medical conditions (such as asthma, diabetes, epilepsy, arthritis, etc.), physical limitations, surgeries, medications you are taking, intoxicants you use, or other relevant health issues. You do not want to go into insulin shock while in bondage or to have an asthma attack with a gag in your mouth. Nor do you want an old knee injury to act up while you're kneeling. Ideally, the dominant will ask YOU about these things. If you tell her and she doesn't seem interested or in any way indicates that she isn't factoring them into what she does with you, again, something is terribly wrong.
The above essay was edited and excerpted from COME HITHER: A Commonsense Guide to Kinky Sex, Gloria's best-selling new book.
Visit COME HITHER ON-LINE or buy a copy now on AMAZON.COM
Copyright ©Gloria Brame 2001