Okay....so I've read all the replies on this topic and I would like to weigh in, in order to stir the pot further I suppose.
Philosophically, isnt being that which you are behind closed doors more who you really are? People put on fake faces and phony smiles in real life all the time. Isn't that acting or playing? I roleplay as a rapist, because well, common decency and laws prohibit me from being other. It is a fantasy role that I enjoy playing as it feeds my insatiable hunger to use a woman how I choose. However, being a Dom isn't a role for me.
Not everything I do is a role. I am a Dom, a Daddy Dom. Yes I know, subdivisions of the standard Dom/Top sub/bottom irritate some of you, but its who I am....all the time. I have a dominant personality and the ONLY time I am playing a role, is when I subdue that for various reasons. It could be to contain or lessen an argument or a fight, to try and come to an agreement that doesn't involve me flipping out completely, or to make someone feel more at ease. Those are roles for me because I am more comfortable being very forward and upfront, open and painfully honest about things. I have always been this way and it has gotten me into trouble as a youth trying to find my way in life...and still does at times as an adult.
I don't walk around acting like a Domly Dom Dom....but I am a natural "Dom" in my personal life. I take charge of projects no one wants at work, I oversee a group of people and give them direction, I have helped push various people to get themselves back on track various ways. People look to me to solve things, in every physical, emotional, and mental way imaginable. This flies in the face of the notion that people tend to play a role opposite of who they are as an escape. Who I am in life, I am behind closed doors, give or take a toy or two.
I equally enjoy having someone curled into me, head in my lap, while I play with their hair. I enjoy soft kisses and tense touches at times. Lightly rubbing their back as their sick or we are in line somewhere. I enjoy giving massages, back rubs and foot rubs. I love making a woman feel like a woman. I will encourage them to branch out, be creative, be expressive, be all they can. I also love sitting and interacting with my children. I will spend hours on the floor playing with them or talking to them. I joke around and love to make them laugh or coo (depending upon age) with silly faces or lame kid jokes. I have the capacity to feel and to love, and to have compassion at times. It makes me no less a dominant personality than anything Ive said already nor do my propensaties make me in some way volatile towards a woman because I'm this way.
The problem I see is that everyone has a predetermined image/definition of what a Dom is or should be. Its a predetermined stereotype only slightly different than racism in my eyes sometimes. I am not like any other person, let alone Dom, I have ever met, nor are others that know me I am willing to bet. I will admit I have stumbled at times, by everyone does. I don't get all upset about a sub doing something to make herself feel better, nor do I get all worked up about talking to other people. It's the "Doms" that act all tough all the time that are the root of all evil. The "you can't talk to that person and I forbid you to interact with this person; stop posting this or saying that, you are mine and mine alone."
They show they are insecure with themselves and incapable of controlling themselves, let alone a person or situation.
In my eyes, being a true Dom is a lot more than just floggers and chains, ropes and toys. A real Dom is someone who understands another person and is willing to displace their own wants to ensure the needs of their submissive/pet are met. No ego trips, no bullshit about me being better than them. I have attributes that lend well to them being submissive...and instill things I want in a relationship as a Dom. I dont place her as a doormat nor do I make it all about me, quite the opposite. I protect those I care for and will fight to the death (literally) for them. I make decisions and my actions based upon their well being. I am the same essentially in real life as I am behind closed doors and online...with just a bit more sex. I dont get all riled up over anything on the internet, because while I try to stay close to who I am, other people dont. What I say here on the net, I have said in a group of friends or discussion panel at a munch or while playing yahtzee.