Friday, February 22, 2008

Who is the Submissive Man?

Even with a short survey, we have collected a very rich data set. We have a modest respondent base of just over two hundred participants, but the quality of the sample is high. You should not compare this sample to an online poll, as it is nothing like that. I have controlled the sample carefully. We have a great deal of heterogeneity across most of the demographic data (with one notable exception), and analysis of very basic data quality metrics within demographic segments is predictable and in line with what you would expect from a much larger sample. For example, income goes up predictably as age increases, income and age indices align with regional expectations, etc. We know that statistics teaches us that a small sample is generally as reliable as a large sample, but it is always good to see it play out in the data.

Ethnicity

The one exception to the heterogeneity in our data set was around the category of ethnic background. We had a sample that was 98% white. I made every effort to recruit African American, Hispanic and Asian respondents (and then planned on stratifying the sample afterwards so my recruiting did not impact the aggregate results), but my efforts were ineffective. In the end we had one African American respondent, one Hispanic respondent and two Asian respondents. I know from my social sciences background that it is often difficult to collect responses from African Americans and even more difficult from Hispanics, but I certainly did not expect this. As a result of this, I went into the BDSM personals site Collarme.com, and I analyzed the first one hundred submissive males on the site as a proxy for the population. It was not a perfect proxy, but the results were interesting.

In the Collarme sample of American submissive men (excluding gay men), we saw the following:

1% Hispanic
2% African American
2% Mixed
95% Caucasian

So my conclusion is that my lack of ethnic responses was not a function of sampling or recruiting problems, it was a genuine reflection of the population of submissive men. Submissive men are overwhelming white. This is ultimately nothing more than descriptive. Because ethnicity has both a genetic and cultural component, it says very little about the question of what makes a man submissive that we will deal with comprehensively in a later release of the data.

Geography


The Collarme data also was important to me to evaluate and report state by state information. Because I did some active recruiting to assure regional representation, I wanted to have another data source to give me a somewhat more reliable read of geographic dispersement of American submissive men. Here I also went through another interesting exercise using yet another data source. I used the MaxFisch directory of dominant women to gauge where professional dominants are most abundant, counting how many links to pro-dommes there were listed for each state. I then married both this count and the Collarme count of submissive men with US population data to create an index of where submissive men and professional dominants are under or over-developed relative to the population. (Note that the Collarme sample was collected from 12:00 to 1:00 p.m. EST, so we can assume some time zone bias to the data.)

Let me take you through an example state to help interpret the following data:


Click Here to View Figure 1: Submissive and Pro-dommes Totals by State

Florida represents 6.0% of the US population, but 8.2% of the submissive men in my Collarme sample. Index 8.2% to the expected 6.0% and you get 137. Any state over 100 is overdeveloped, and any state under 100 is underdeveloped. Florida also represents 9% of the pro-domme listings on MaxFisch, and they are overdeveloped there as well.

As far as interpreting this data, be cautious. While I’m sure, for example, that the politician and lobbyist community in Washington D.C. are known to support a vibrant pro-domme community, I suspect that the capital's pro-domme development index of nearly 1500 is more a function of the fact that D.C. is a place where white submissive men go to work, either as commuters or business travelers, but seldom live (most people that work in D.C. commute from neighboring Virginia or Maryland.) This more than anything explains their inordinately high index. Similarly, Florida and Nevada are huge convention states, and much of the pro-domme customer base undoubtedly comes from business travelers indulging their submission when out of town.

However, I also think the data has much to tell us about regional differences. The unusually high indices for submissive men in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Vermont and New Hampshire, would seem to indicate that there is something about New England that tends to create a disproportionate number of submissive men. Also, the combined Midwest to Western, nominally conservative states of Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Wyoming, Idaho, North Dakota, South Dakota, Oklahoma, and Utah together represent 7.2% percent of the population, but had zero submissive men in my Collarme sample and only a handful of pro-dommes between them.

Age

Moving beyond geography and ethnicity and into age, I have put together the following chart utilizing the same model of comparing our sample to the US population. Here I am going back to the FSG Charter Survey data as my source for submissive men.

(Note: It has come to my attention that some of you are having difficulty reading my tables as they are appearing distorted in your browser windows. Please click here for an online spreadsheet version of the data.)

Figure 2: Age of Submissive Men


-------------------------% FSG Sample--------------- % US Population-------Index

25 and Under---------------- 5.4 ------------------------35.9 ------------------15
26 - 35 ------------------------14.7 ------------------------13.9 -----------------106
36 - 45 ------------------------26.0 ------------------------14.8 -----------------176
46 - 55 ------------------------31.9 ------------------------20.4 -----------------156
55+ ----------------------------22.1 ------------------------20.9 -----------------106


I think it has often been hypothesized that there is a sweet spot for the blossoming of submission in a man as he begins to move into middle age. This has certainly been suggested by Emily Addison on her http://www.aroundherfinger.com/ site. Here the data proves out this hypothesis. Aging out of one’s twenties and thirties is a difficult time for many men, and the youth and physical vigor on which they have based their self-esteem begins to fade. Perhaps this suggests that they can turn to their submissive impulses to seek security. Alternatively, it might be quite the opposite. Perhaps they become more comfortable with whom they are and what they want. This new confidence in their identiy helps them to feel more open to explore submissive impulses that have always existed. The data supports both theories.

Marital Status

Our FSG sample of submissive men is less likely to never have married than the US population (and here I use white males only for the population benchmark since there were significant differences across ethnic segments). This can probably be explained away by the fact that they also tend to be older than the population overall.

(Note: It has come to my attention that some of you are having difficulty reading my tables as they are appearing distorted in your browser windows. Please click here for an online spreadsheet version of the data.)

Figure 3: Marital Status of Submissive Men


-----------------------------% FSG Sample----------- % US Population ----------Index

Single Never Married ------------21.6 -----------------------27.5 -----------------79
Currently Married ---------------57.8 -----------------------60.9 -----------------95
Divorced ----------------------------21.1 -----------------------11.7 -----------------180


However, the divorce rate is strikingly higher for submissive men. I may be overstepping, but I can only assume that this is because they could never achieve the sort of emotional intimacy that they sought in a strictly non-femdom relationship.

Income

Our submissive respondents differ dramatically from the US white, male population in regard to their income. (Note: I again made the comparison against white male Americans as opposed to all male Americans.) The below chart makes it abundantly clear that submissive men are much more financially successful than their non-submissive counterparts.

(Note: It has come to my attention that some of you are having difficulty reading my tables as they are appearing distorted in your browser windows. Please click here for an online spreadsheet version of the data.)

Figure 4: Annual (Individual) Income of Submissive Men


----------------------% FSG Sample --------------% US Population ------------Index

Under $25k ----------------6.4 --------------------------43.5 --------------------15
$25 - 40k ------------------13.7 -------------------------18.9 --------------------73
$41 - 60k ------------------19.6 -------------------------16.4 --------------------119
$61 - 80k ------------------16.8 -------------------------10.1 --------------------167
$81 - 100k -----------------11.8 -------------------------3.1 ---------------------383
$100 - 140k ---------------16.7 ---------------------------4.7 ---------------------357
$150k + --------------------15.7 --------------------------3.3 ---------------------472


It is impossible to know if there is a cause and effect relationship at work. However, even if we could prove that a cause and effect relationship existed, it would still be equally impossible to know which variable represents the cause and which represents the effect. It is very much a chicken or the egg question. Do men turn to submission, as some hypothesize, because the pressures of financial success leads them to it as an escape from their responsibilities? Or, is there something about the submissive man’s desire to please others that makes him financially successful. We hope to explore this question in later analysis, but for now it remains unanswered.

It is also worthwhile, and perhaps relevant to the question above, to note how these men make their livings. Twenty-two percent own their own businesses while sixty-eight percent work for others. (Six percent are retired, one percent is unemployed and one percent keep house while the wife works). A whopping forty percent have employees for which they are the direct supervisor. I do not have benchmark against which to compare that, but I suspect that it is inordinately high compared to the population overall. Furthermore, forty-one percent consider there job “high-powered” and fully fifty-five percent consider their job high stress. This data will be incredibly useful when considering the root causes of the submissive impulse in later releases of our results.

Concluding Comments

For now, we have provided a glimpse into who the submissive man is in America. Please know that this only represents the beginning of our results and analysis, and that the bulk of this project remains in front of us. Please keep checking for updates.

5 comments:

helpmate hubby said...

Just wanted to say thank you so much for the study. As i was one of the participants i found it very educational and worthwhile. i hope you will do moe studies in the future!

Sissy@Heart said...

I just read your post and it was very informative. I had a thought that you may get better results if you ran it for 4 hours to analyze the shift from east to west. And as for the lack of Hispanic and African American results, could it be due to their typical closeness to their patriarchal christian religion? Maybe they can't bring to admitting it.

jacie said...

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Blanca said...

Thank you so much! Great study, I have a very dominant personality with men and would love to try to embark in a relationship with a total sub. Separated now but the idea of having total control on a man gets me very sexually exited. So I am trying to study their psyche before I go looking so I know how to handle them nicely but very firm!