Roleplaying covers a lot of territory here.
Consciously, subconsciously (brink of awareness) or unconsciously absorbing and replaying scripts starting at our first bits of play with objects and animals (including people), with people interaction the most complicated, starting with primary caregivers on through every relationship of any kind ’til the end of days.
That’s not that scripts aren’t genuine or couldn’t be: whatever emotions and thoughts we have are more than method acting. But they can be. And for those that can be, a lot of questions about genuineness can be put aside into another category.
I would consider dom/sub/switch to fall into that. I think a couple of other questions (you asked several) can fall into that.
So what’s left of the genuinely genuine?
It’s there. But I felt a need to parse and sort for easier management and hope this helps.
we sent our responses at the same time and cover similar zones. Amazing!
I don’t think of dom and sub as circuits though.
I see Play as primary.
The first bits of happiness, beyond satiation from food, is play. No purpose. No domination. No submission. No switching. Play.
But during that play, roles are learned. Thousands and thousands of possible ways of “how to be a person that relates to other people” are learned through our interactions with humans, pets, TV shows, video games, humor, school, siblings, work, all layering and connecting and disconnecting and in the midst of it all, patterns emerge that you utilize situationally.
You may have favorites you return to often or always, shaping a personality of your relating-style.
Power differences between humans are always there but as long as there is relating happening or negotiating, dom and sub can switch a thousand times in a few hours with each thought and mood and interaction.
To me, it’s the shaping of a song. Notes go up and down, instruments cooperate and compete, none precisely play the same note in the same timbre at the same wave fall and rise but hopefully they work together in all of this to create something that works.
I tend to start with positive psychology if I can. I don’t tend to utilize circuit metaphors for human behaviors, although occasionally I do, as from an historical viewpoint:
all life does relating.
Bacteria communities, plants, and animals, including humans.
All mammals play in similar ways – that is, much can be mapped cleanly from one species to another.
One of those species also created computers which they patterned somewhat after themselves but in an extremely crude fashion.