Harry Potter Why do so many authors make Harry a sub?


Well-Known Member
I can't understand something.
So many authors like to make Harry Potter a submissive who gets abused/bullied by his spouse and treated like crap.
I won't even get into how many authors try to pair him with Draco Malfoy or Snape who continue to treat Harry much the same as they did in the books, demeaning and belittling him and then suddenly they are making out and I'm hitting the closebox on the story (I hate m/m slash, just personal preferences).

Considering how Harry was treated by the Dursleys, I can't see him enjoying that kind of treatment in a relationship or putting up with it. I can't understand why authors think he would go for that type of thing instead of hating it with a passion. He'd want a partner that is emotionally supportive, not trying to dominate and control him. Heck, I could see Harry going the other way and being a dom, but I just can't understand why that is so rare instead of him being made a sub.


The Original M2J
I think part of it is to counter the Dominant Harry, Harry/Harem and Dom!Harry/Harem stories out there. You also have to take into account an authors personal tastes. They may be closet submissives that actually like being degraded and humiliated and are living vicariously through Harry- completely ignoring the parts of Harry's background where such a relationship would be toxic for him and very, very unsafe.I

If there is anything that I've noticed that writers of Dom and Sub Harry stories have in common is that none of them actually know how a BDSM relationship works. It's more than degradation, whips and chains and kinky fun sex time. There is a whole culture to it that often gets overshadowed by kinky sex. Honestly, if someone is going to write about that sort of relationship, I would recommend watching The Iron Bull's Romance Arc in Dragon Age: Inquisition, rather than 50 Shades of Grey, to get an idea as to what a healthy BDSM relationship looks like. Say what you like about Bioware, but Character Development has never been their weak point.

That being said, there was a Harry/Hermione one shot years ago, where Harry was Hermione's submissive and the author actually made a good argument for it. Between the Dursleys, Dumbledore, Mrs. Weasley and the Wizarding World, Harry has never been given a whole lot of opportunities to actually make any choices for him self, and thus, as a young adult, is often uncomfortable making choices on his own. However, the author also stressed that the relationship Harry and Hermione have is built on trust. He trusts her implicitly to know his limits and to push, but not exceed them. Which is the point that nearly every author writing about BDSM completely misses, regardless as to whether or not Harry is a Dom or a Sub.

The relationship between canon Harry and Hermione, though platonic, is built on trust and mutual care, which is absolutely necessary for a healthy BDSM relationship, no matter who serves what role. That's doubly important for a person with a background like Harry's, both as Dominant and Submissive, because he would have to ride a very fine line to make sure he doesn't go too far or doesn't let someone else go too far- which is the whole point of Aftercare- which is rarely ever seen in fiction because, as I said before, most authors, and even audiences, ignore about 90-95% of the BDSM subculture, to get off to kinky sex games.
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I would guess that at least some of them don't see Harry as a very strongly masculine or at least not a strongly self-assertive character. From there they draw a line and a wild conclusion.