There are many roles a dominant man may fill in a hierarchical relationship. Some common examples are: Daddy, Caregiver, Dom and Master. Sometimes, however, the differences in the roles of Dom and Master are not well understood.
A Dom directs one or more subs. This is a limited power exchange where the sub obeys her Dom, but has defined limits and the ability to use a safe word at any time as a way to stop any action by her Dom. This is typically only done if the Dom is pushing her past her pain threshold or if she feels unsafe or that her limits are not being respected.
A Master owns one or more slaves. This is a total power exchange where the slave has no safe word, no limits. She places complete trust in her Master and obeys him without hesitation.
Both a Master and a Dom have a considerable amount of control over their women. The relationships will in fact look very similar in most situations. However the mental state of a sub and a slave is quite different. The sub still maintains a sense of self. She expresses her own thoughts and needs. The slave’s identity revolves around being the property of her Master. Her only need is to please him.
The level of responsibility for a Master is much greater than that of a Dom. He has absolute control over his slave. He makes every decision. This is not about being abusive however. It’s about His satisfaction in having that level of control, and her satisfaction for relinquishing all responsibility except for obedience.
A Dom is not less than a Master. It’s simply a different role. For example, in a poly relationship, a man can have both a sub and a slave, so he can simultaneously be in the role of Master and Dom.