I am a top, and I really want to develop some friendships with other tops. However, whenever I start getting close to one, I feel like they suspect I am trying to get them to bottom for me. How can I remain respectful and cultivate these kinds of friendships?
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I think the most important thing in this situation — as in many situations — is good communication. Once you and a potential friend have gotten to know each other sufficiently well, and such topics as kinks and sexual preferences come up, it shouldn't be particularly difficult for you to tell your potential new friend that you are a top, but that you aren't looking for your friend to bottom for you.
You don't really describe whether you are looking for these friendships to be sexual or not, so I'll answer this question both ways.
If the person you are talking to is truly interested in only friendship, and isn't necessarily looking for a new sexual partner, telling him that penetrative sex is off the table shouldn't be a huge deal. I don't know of any tops who would be offended by being told that you don't view them as a sexual interest for bottoming. In fact, most tops I know would be relieved to hear this!
If the person you're talking to is in fact looking for sex in the context of your friendship, you can make it clear that penetrative sex isn't on the menu. Offer to stick to paws and muzzles, and see if that sets your new friend's mind at ease.
Too often, gay guys seem to think that sex requires penetration on every occasion, and that just isn't the case. Keep in mind that you can enjoy sexual intimacy with someone else through cuddling, body contact, frottage, mutual masturbation, and oral sex. In many cases, the combination of these activities can offer intimacy and sexual excitement on par with, or even in excess of, penetrative sex. Naturally, these sexual activities are also much lower risk, from a sexual health point of view, and therefore are a good fit for a casual, non-exclusive sexual relationship.
Speaking from personal experience, as an almost exclusive top, I have many rewarding friendships with other tops and dominants, some of which are platonic, and some of which are sexual. I find a lot of value in comparing notes with other tops/dominants on ways to bring pleasure to bottoms/submissives, and I also really enjoy non-penetrative forms of sex with other tops, as I tend to be attracted to guys with more dominant-leaning personalities a lot of the time. If I didn't befriend any of these guys because I knew penetration was off the table, I'd really be missing out on a lot of rewarding and mutually beneficial relationships!
So, to sum up, try to communicate openly and honestly, and be very clear that you are happy with sexual intimacy that doesn't always lead to penetration, or with no sexual intimacy whatsoever, depending on the type of friendship you are looking to have (sexual or platonic).
Hope that helps! With any follow up questions or feedback, feel free to use the comment section below, or to get in touch with us via our contact page.