The Psychology of Financial Domination

Financial Domination is that rare BDSM fantasy that, from the outside world of “vanilla heteronormativity”, is baffling to the mind; and from the point of view of the professional dominatrix, too good to be true. Throughout the years I have trained of 'money slaves' of various breeds and it is only now that I feel I am experienced enough to deconstruct for you the mind of a financial submissive. 

What is financial domination (FinDom)? First, I will clarify what is NOT financial domination: it is NOT an unethical exploitation of a male sub, it is NOT an easy way for women to advertise online as financial dominatrices as a get-rich-quick scheme by using men, it is NOT a woman who makes a career out of asking men to subsidize all her living expenses, it is NOT woman who only wants to be spoiled with money or gifts -- and nothing else -- from men (a financial dominatrix is not to be confused with a 'sugar baby'). A woman who falsely poses as a findom Mistress because she needs the money possesses zero power in this game. 

My definition is as follows: Financial Domination is a sexually arousing GAME of power-play whereby psychological pleasure is experienced as a result of the humiliation from giving up one's monetary assets to another. The FinDom fantasy exists in predominantly MALE subs (there is very little evidence to suggest that women enjoy this type of power play). A financial dominatrix enjoys this game for the thrill of humiliating her money-slave, she does not need the money and she will say "no" to whomever displeases her--therein lies her power. There are 3 main reason why some subs enjoy financial domination: control, humiliation, and service. 

Financial Domination is able to exist and (actually become a fetish or desire for some) because of certain Universal Rules of Life (UROL) for men, unchanged by feminism:

  • Men, on average, earn more money than women.
  • Men spend more money on women than women do on men.  
  • Historically, men have been the protectors of, and providers to, women
  • Men work so that women do not have to 
  • Men are bred to be "success objects" in the form of professional prestige and financial fitness so as to have 'something to offer' to women (and society as a whole)

Of course there are exceptions to the “rules” stated above, but any man--even if he does not accept or adhere to them, even if he is gay--will at least acknowledge at least one or more as part of his masculine socialization. At some point in the life of every couple, the man will pay for a woman on a date, he will purchase a home for her, provide for her children, or give up his assets to her in a divorce. There is a reason men are still the primary party proposing marriage to a woman. Why? Pragmatically speaking, he, by asking her, is offering to share resources with her, of which she traditionally has less of than he. She has not been the one to initiate such a question because she cannot ask him to share what is not hers.

If a man does not spend money on a woman out of romantic pursuits, he will often find a female substitute to spend it on: a sister, female friend, and, certainly, his beloved mother. As if hard wired to do so, men have a deep desire to take care of women and, by so doing, be the hero in their story. 

After considering the underlying basics enabling FinDom, it is not difficult to imagine how the standard, accepted norm of men spending money on women might be sexualized. I will now begin to unpack the 3 main reasons for which financial domination is pleasurable for the money slave.

1st: CONTROL

Money is directly associated with control and power. To have money is to have control over our lives. More true for men than women: to have money is to wield some level of power. Money IS power. So a man’s simple gift of his money to a woman is the ultimate expression of submission to her. If he values money more than most men, the money slave will feel powerless as he sees his account depleting and hers fatten from his labor and sweat.

Some men find themselves born into privilege, inheriting a trust fund of unearned (and, perhaps in their minds, undeserved) wealth. Some of these fortunates, living in a state rendered numb with lack of worry and stress, scream to shake off the manacles of their comfortable surroundings. They can develop a keen desire to risk losing all that shelters them. The idea that a woman can ruin him financially is a powerful and exciting fantasy. Of course, rational men do not actually wish for their own financial destruction, but the very possibility and threat itself is enough to jolt them out of their luxurious, and perhaps deadening, surroundings. Or at the very least by giving away some of their unearned resources they can be absolved of the guilt of their predestined leisurely uselessness. 

Men are pressured to perform in this culture, or else they are considered failures in the eyes of their communities, and especially in the eyes of the opposite sex. By simply giving a woman money they feel a release from this pressure. Such a 'transaction' can serve to eliminate the tedious efforts in trying impress a woman, convincing her to date him, convincing her family he has enough resources so she should be with him, and all the endless dances required to prove himself worthy to a female. "See? I did it, I made money, here it is, take it, it's yours." Financial submission in this form overrides the social pressures of his reality as a man and trashes its set of guidelines for what is expected of him. At the same time he loses control of himself as a man by giving in to his perceived 'obligations' to women, he is also mocking of society’s demand by making a game of it. 

2. HUMILIATION

As stated in Reason 1, money is directly associated with power and control. It purely and timelessly defines a man's masculinity. Therefore, it is also humiliating for a money slave to be emasculated in this manner of submission. Central in this concept are feelings of inferiority to other men who outperform him, or to women who are unattainable to him. Insecure about his accomplishments and share of the prizes of Life, he may envy his more successful male peers. He might suffer from deep feelings of inadequacy or even worthlessness, which may have pushed him to overcompensate by making money his central focus. 

He has an image of the ideal, beautiful woman but believes he is neither attractive or successful enough and so will never have her. Giving money to the woman of his fantasies is the ideal compromise, allowing him to expose his secret insecurities and establish his inferiority in her presence. (The act of giving to one's perceived superiors is not unique to slaves and Mistresses. Rhesus monkeys, for example, will pay in the form of sacrificed food just for the chance to view high-status members of their colony) How exquisitely humiliating it is for him that she will take his money as that is the only way she will give him the time of day. She will spend it at her discretion, and most importantly, she will never have sex with him. His money gift to her - that she now so casually spends on her own desires - reinforces his status as a 'pay-pig' for the Superior Goddess. He is reduced to a human ATM who has only one objectifying function. He will never measure up to the men she actually wants for her sexual pleasure. "Just take my money please, I don't have anything else to offer you. Use me, exploit me, see me for what I'm not."

To give in to his insecurities via financial submission is to acknowledge and actually indulge in his fear of failure. Because he already suspects there is something humiliating deep inside himself, financial submission is the external expression of his internal conflict. Her acceptance of his money is her silent recognition of all that he cannot be for her, and since she is the only one who knows about this secret part of him, she becomes the only person with whom he can shed his pretenses. "Thank you for taking my money, Goddess, thank you for letting me be of some use to You." 

As previously mentioned in the list of universal rules for men, there is a built-in culture of privilege that permits a woman to be entitled to a man's money. Most men earn their income through years of education and even decades of professional experience. That a woman can simply command a man's resources after all that hard work shines a screaming spotlight on the natural disparity between the sexes. However large or small the amount of money he gives to her, even one cent of that portion did, in effect, take him years to earn while she snatched it from him in an instant. This sheer contrast in and of itself is humiliating for the money-slave. 

Financial domination is also an extension (and expression) of ownership and reinforcement of the Dominance/submission relationship structure between Mistress and money-slave. By being 'forced' to hand over his resources (the physical indicator and symbol of his independence) he is consenting to be Hers to use and exploit as She sees fit at the expense of his pride and agency. His money is Hers to control and manage, and if She decides that he should have an allowance of his own money then she will allot a small fund for this purpose. If it pleases Her, She may wish to impose a 'tax' on certain violations such as an orgasm fee if he masturbates without permission, or a 'punctuality tax' if he does not arrive on time for an appointment. She might wish to dine at a premium restaurant while he waits for her outside as a human coat hanger, waiting for Her signal for him to come inside only to pay the bill. She might stand in Her new designer boots that She forced him to buy that day, while he is kneeling on the floor beside Her, drooling over the leather covering her beautiful legs as he eats leftovers from a dog bowl. "We all must make sacrifices, pet. I must have these boots therefore you need to eat scraps." Another common fantasy of the money slave who wishes to be owned this way is that of him living in abject poverty while his Goddess lives very comfortably, often within close enough proximity so that he can witness the stark contrast and experience the constant humiliation. "She deserves everything I have and I deserve nothing, she is that much more superior than me, I am but a work mule for her."

3. SERVICE

Service to women is the ultimate expression of chivalry and gentlemanly behavior. A man is not a complete man until he has mastered the world (professional domination) as well as the art of charming and pleasing a lady (sexual domination). All other personal endeavors aside, those two are the only tasks required of him by nature. Men, even non-submissive vanilla men, love to please their ladies and make them happy.

Naturally competitive with the instinct to win, these evolutionary buttons are pressed when their reward system is engaged by doing things for women--especially when women sexualize their request. Men will do nearly anything to make their women smile, laugh, and CERTAINLY anything to make them cum. "Don't you want to buy this for me, hmm? I would be most pleased if you can..Be a good boy and open your wallet. Your money makes me wet so just hand it over." Therefore, a money slave, with all the instincts bestowed on him since the dawn of sex, is preprogrammed with the desire to service a woman and his money is his tool for achieving this purpose. If spending money on her, or simply giving it to her, makes her happy then he feels content knowing that he directly contributed to her state of pleasure. 

To make her happy is to serve her. To serve is to give. To give is to spend--this is the clearest and easiest formula by which to demonstrate servitude and devotion in the minds of money slaves.  

Financial domination, as one can see, is rooted in various emotions and fantasy role-play. When responsibly explored it can be fun, thrilling, terrifying, and unsettlingly arousing. FinDom can be used for discipline, 'exploitation' roleplay, service demonstration, and more. Findom is perhaps one of the most misunderstood of all the fantasies in the BDSM sphere however, once unmasked and analyzed, it is easy to see some of the themes common to kink as a whole: control, submission, humiliation. And, like any form of D/s relational structure, Findom can be used to promote healthy exploration between two consenting parties who, at the core, understand and respect each others' needs and dark desires. Financial Domination is a relationship between the money-slave and the Mistress, NOT a mere transaction. A responsible Financial Dominatrix must impose a limit and, more importantly, she must enjoy the psychological GAME of financial domination. Most of all, she must see the the "slave" in the money, rather than the other way around.