Sunday, September 17, 2017

Acceptance

Hi all. Let’s talk about the insane amount of work it takes just to live and do the right thing… yeah, raising two little babies while both working full time (actually Bruce is working way more than full time) involves early mornings, long work hours, repeatedly pumping/breastfeeding, getting kids ready for bed, lack of sleep, etc. But the real intensity comes with pushing past just going through the motions to do what’s right- be a productive worker, help our infant get plenty of nourishment, sleep, and love, teach considerateness to our pre-toddler, eat healthy and stay in shape, maintain healthy relationships with friends and family, and of course make time for each other and our marriage. I am so mentally and physically drained that I don’t even have the energy to process the exhaustion. Ha, in fact I am pumping myself full of caffeine as we speak just so I don’t fall asleep before actually posting!

But being spread so thin has done something great for my “Type A” perfectionist, OCD mentality; I have learned to accept a lot more. Now if you read my blog at all you know I’ve been specifically working at submitting and accepting the imperfections of our dynamic for over two years. But now this acceptance is running deeper; I’m not just dealing with or tolerating (I hate that word) things, but I am sincerely accepting them, embracing them even. And in regards to submission… not getting my way, internalizing better, receiving verbal and physical correction… acceptance is no simple task.

Let me be blunt and say that the exhaustion catching up with us this past week has taken a toll on our use of DD and even our sex life. Not only has it been a *cringe* full week since we’ve been intimate, but I honest-to-goodness got out of the shower this morning and noticed the unusual smooth/softness of my backside. Bruce has been telling me for three days now that a couple of not-so-submissive moments have warranted a serious punishment spanking, but we’ve been crashing so hard at the end of the day that it just hasn’t happened. But today after putting both babies down for a nap he followed me into our bedroom to get the monitors and much to my dismay he pulled out that horrible lexan paddle. He made me lay across the bed, and as he slid my pants and underwear down he reminded me that this was a punishment spanking, and that it would be harsh. Wow oh wow was he serious about that; it has been a very long time since I’ve been spanked that hard.

Here’s where the acceptance part comes in: I have shared with Bruce more than once that it helps me submit better when he achieves the same level of discomfort through more slightly-less-intense strikes rather than fewer especially severe strikes. Nonetheless I received relatively few (twenty?) strikes, all of which were very, very breathtakingly intense. As I’ve articulated to him before, that kind of intensity makes physical and even mental submission virtually impossible. Now I admit I am out of practice, so as I sensed and as Bruce later articulated, the amount of force he used was not really as harsh as it felt. At any rate I definitely squirmed, even to the point of getting out of position, cried, and begged for it to stop. He kissed me and rubbed my bottom between strikes two or three times, but each time when he returned to using the paddle it was so awful that I bit the pillow to keep from screaming. Since the intensity compensated for amount of strikes, in the end (and even now) I was definitely uncomfortable but no more sore than usual. But I just didn’t have the chance to get into the right frame of mind, and so I didn’t experience the kind of release that is so cathartic for me. Nonetheless, I truly accepted his choice to spank me this way, and when it was over he kissed me again and we made love without anything negative between us.

Earlier this evening I told Bruce that I intended to blog about this afternoon, so upon request he shared his motivations behind my punishment further, if nothing other than to confirm what I already knew. He said that he knows that I dislike being spanked that way, but that sometimes the point is for me to do what he says, especially when I dislike it. He reminded me that even though I wasn’t still or quiet, my taking the spanking was submitting in a way that was potentially even more significant to him. He’s right of course. And after all, it wouldn’t be a punishment if I didn’t really dislike it. I accept this especially because we’ve agreed that punishments should be particularly undesirable.

As important as it is to do all of this accepting, even true acceptance doesn’t mean I should ever stop seeking a stronger and deeper connection between the two of us. I really believe that continually seeking improvement is the best combatant of stagnation and apathy. So my goal these next two weeks is to purposefully pray for Bruce and myself, that each of us have the spiritual strength and clarity to be the best parent and spouse that we can be. I will try to be more sincerely submissive than I have been the past few weeks because it’s the right thing to do. After all, doing the right thing is a worthy cause, even when it is exhausting. And when it keeps me from experiencing a punishment like the one I had today, well that’s certainly an added bonus :)

Monday, September 4, 2017

When He's Angry

I'm perpetually struck by the difference between being on the receiving end of Bruce's stonewalling vs. Bruce's spankings. Stonewalling (shutting down emotionally and even verbally) seems to be a default for many men when they are angry, and I find that interesting. Inversely, it's really hard for men to buy into this whole idea at first- I remember Bruce was really apprehensive, citing that it sounded abusive, unmerciful, etc. This hesitation is honorable, and I can understand how a man might feel that stonewalling is a more noble course of action when they dislike the way we are acting. And actually I think it IS noble to respond that way to another male. But women are different: we crave that emotional and verbal connection more than anything. So while it is something that works for men, from my perspective stonewalling turns out to be pretty much the most hurtful possible way to react to most women. When Bruce used to react this way it felt so isolating and unkind that I would often lose it crying or even get angry that he could be so hurtful. But Bruce had assumed that when he was angry at me it was just better to shut down than to react. But was it?

It's interesting to consider the alternative of spanking. I know I shouldn't type this too loudly even within D/s circles, but we've agreed as a couple that Bruce can use spanking when he's angry. I know it's not for everyone, but my OCD looping is a very in-the-moment thing, and he wouldn't be able to shut it down nearly as often if he could only do so when he was feeling calm and collected. And doing things this way also prevents us from letting DD fall into the background when life gets overwhelming or intense.

While it really does work for us, let me say a few things about our use of spanking while angry:

1) It is imperative that Bruce is always in control. That's not to say things haven't been more harsh than is ideal before, but if things ever went to an extreme then we would obviously have some reevaluating to do

2) It only works if I own my portion of this choice- it cannot fall completely on him when he doesn't handle things perfectly. While we try to avoid it, a less-than-ideal experience is always a possibility. Rather than making a big deal out of it I accept these times because I feel the benefits outweigh the detriments.

3) It is unsettling to be seriously spanked by the man I love, and when he is clearly upset it is exponentially more so. In all seriousness, spanking while angry is not for the faint of heart. But it still absolutely beats the shit out of stonewalling!

In example, the other night I did something that made Bruce really upset. Without hesitating he dropped what he was doing and led me over to the couch and bent me over for a spanking. He spanked me plenty hard, and he was clearly angry- his typical softness and patience was replaced by irritable harshness, and it was emotionally unsettling enough that I was crying almost immediately. Even though I was the one to suggest the concept I truly hated going through it while it was happening.

But when it was over he hugged me and we went on with the night... together. While it was undeniably unsettling, I know exactly what the alternative would have been: The old Bruce would have shut down, and the old me would have become more hurt/angry until we both ended up in a shouting match, probably saying hurtful things that would have stuck with us for days. I am so thankful that this method of conflict resolution is a thing of the past! Now Bruce simply does not stonewall- he doesn't turn away from me or give up on staying connected; he comes toward me and doesn't even consider becoming disconnected as an option. To men stonewalling may seem like the honorable thing to do, and to society spanking your wife is the same as stripping her of her dignity. But to me my husband coming towards me in the interest of staying connected is a thousand times more loving than his turning away or shutting down in anger and exasperation. I know DD isn't for everyone, and I'm not saying it should be. I'm just saying that it actually makes a lot more sense than mainstream society would have you believe.

Monday, August 14, 2017

DD Interview

Sometimes it's nice to step back and summarize the significant parts of this lifestyle. I've mentioned having the privilege of getting to know JGirl in the past year or so (in the off chance you are unfamiliar, see Taming of the Shrew blog to the right!), and how great it is to have a healthy, experienced friend within the lifestyle to connect with. This past week she suggested we do an interview about living the DD lifestyle, and I was more than happy to participate! Here are her interview questions and my responses:


1) How long have you two been a DD couple? 
We've been doing this a few months shy of three years now.



2) Did you always have a Dom/sub or power exchange relationship, or was this a very big change for you?
Well I think we both really wanted it to be this way, but I was just too stubborn and misled by societal expectations, etc. I would tell people he was the boss, decorate our bedroom in his favourite colours, let him do the bills, stuff like that, but I definitely was really fighting for equal control all along. It didn't occur to me how much I would actually enjoy serving him.


3) What do you think is the best benefit of this dynamic? 
Definitely the reduced/shorter/less-intense marital arguments. It just works better to have one person call the shots, where before we would go round and round forever. Now when he shuts it down I always think I'll need to respectfully bring it up again later, but I rarely see it that way once I've stepped back from things.


4) What do you find hardest?
This is pretty basic, but it's very hard for me to show submission when it seems I'm not getting anything in return. It just takes so much physical and emotional energy to begin with. The dynamic definitely wouldn't work if my submission was conditional/reactionary, but it sure would be ten times easier that way!


5) If you could pick an implement to toss in The Great Submissive Bonfire of 2017 without repercussion, what would it be?
Absolutely 100% the lexan paddle! It's made with the stuff they use for bullet-proof glass, and is supposed to sting like an acrylic paddle only way more intense. It is so unbelievably painful, I dread it so much. What's worse is that it doesn't usually leave marks so I never even have the battle scars to show for it!


6) Which rule do you find easiest to obey?
Probably acts of physical submission, like doing things for him when he asks. Even when I'm not feeling up to it, the decision to get him coffee, rub his back, wear a skirt, etc. always seems like a pretty explicit choice to be unsubmissive or submissive.


7) Which is the hardest?
I seriously struggle with being able to stop speaking my mind or stating my case when he says we're done discussing something. At least three fourths of all of my punishments are because of this one thing! It's just really difficult for me to stop when I feel I'm being misunderstood. And Bruce adds that although I'm getting better I also have trouble being still during harsh maintenance/punishments.


8) If you could give someone new to this one piece of advice, what would it be?
Let the HoH/Dom truly call the shots; even though it's tempting, I think things work infinitely better when submissives don't make suggestions unless asked. Lucky for me Bruce shut this down from the start- before DD he had been very laid back about being in charge, but when he agreed to give it a try he said we'd either be doing everything his way or we wouldn't be doing it at all. Once I stopped giving input on how I thought things should be he really started to own it and get into it much more. Even if things weren't going the way I wanted them too, the authenticity of that was actually very hot! And eventually he became interested in hearing my opinion on things here and there, so by now he's taken a fair amount of my thoughts and preferences into consideration anyway.


9) If you could project yourself five years from now, where would you like to see your dynamic?
Well I still get punished quite a lot, more than I think most couples with a few years of experience, but we have two babies under sixteen months old so hopefully that will naturally change as the madness settles a bit. It'd be great if in five years we're in the same kind of rhythm that JGirl and Jason are ;) Seriously, I know she's mentioned "getting" each other sort of automatically by now, like to a point where his expectations and her needs are pretty intuitively obvious to the other without needing to articulate much. We are learning and getting better, but we are definitely not to that point yet. I hope we find ourselves moving closer to that type of thing as we both continue to gain experience and maturity along the way. I won't deny that it's a lot of work, but the payoff of all of that work is seriously awesome :)

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Implements

Bruce commented the other day that he is really satisfied with his implement arsenal, and as it seems pretty well rounded and terrible from my perspective I figured it was worth a blog post. Of course, different things work for different people. Some D/s couples I know only use household items, or some HoHs prefer to make all of their implements by hand. Others simply buy them from spanking implement stores. Bruce does use household items on occasion, but not typically. And since he doesn't spend much time at his workbench, particularly when he is busy, we basically fall into the third category.

As far as acquiring them goes, Bruce expects me to do my research on this and present him with a few options before buying. He'll mention that we need a better paddle or a quiet implement, and tell me to get on it. When the DD forum was up and running someone had suggested using Caneiac.com, so that's the only place I've ever gone; their stuff seems... ah... built to last, and the packaging is super discreet which is nice. Embarrassingly enough we've ended up with more than one broken paddle, but even Bruce would say that those were a result of some pretty intense punishments. The site is a tad kinky for my taste, but really in the way of spanking paraphernalia stores I imagine it's about as tasteful as one could hope for. At any rate, here are the three spanking implements that currently reside in our home:

Lexan Paddle
This is Bruce's favorite, and he uses it alone or with the others for nearly every spanking. It is polycarbonate, the material used to make bulletproof glass, and is known for delivering an exceptionally excruciating sting. We originally had an acrylic paddle, and Bruce chose the lexan as a replacement since it was supposed to be "unbreakable" with a similar but way more intense sting. Bruce loves how it almost never leaves lasting marks regardless of intensity, but I rather hate that. It is horrible to experience unbearable pain only to wake the next morning and see that my backside looks nearly unscathed. When he uses it for a particularly long or harsh spanking it will leave a vague redness, but that's about it. So for all of the above reasons, I really hate the lexan paddle. But I suppose that's the point.

Looped Cane
When my mother in law offered to stay one night a week to help care for our babies, Bruce told me it was time to find a quiet implement. I have no idea why he specifically chose this one out of all of the "whippy" choices I presented him with, but it definitely fits the bill. I also hate this implement, although I am ambivalently grateful to be held accountable even when company is present. On a few rare occasions he has even pulled me aside with daytime visitors and used it. While it requires a great deal more control and restraint than the lexan paddle, I believe it is slightly less painful. But this one leaves marks almost every time.

Leather Strap
Bruce calls this one "cute," as it is not as painful as the other two. While it is admittedly less intense, I still say this implement leaves a deeper sting than the others. I've never been punished with it, but he has used it along with the others during maintenance, and it is usually the main implement for the rare occasions when I receive a good girl spanking.

So there's the list. Again, different things work for different couples. But since Bruce is all about intensity, and isn't one for considerable variety, these three implements work for us. I have a special kind of distaste for each of them, but I appreciate the purpose they serve. And I especially appreciate the man who uses them ;)

Sunday, July 16, 2017

A Submissive Challenge

Unconditional Respect: I believe very sincerely that this is the heart of true submission. It takes little to no effort to behave respectfully to Bruce when I am feeling appreciated, heard, honored, or loved; the challenge is to show respect when I am feeling under-appreciated, neglected, mistreated, etc. But doing so in these times shows my commitment to him and to this dynamic more than anything else ever could. It is in these times where we BOTH end up deepening our commitment to the each other and to this dynamic we're involved in.

This week our little family was confronted with an upsetting situation that has pushed Bruce and I even more than we are already currently being pushed. I'd prefer to avoid specifics, but we've been upset, overwhelmed, and exhausted for the past few days, and this next week will be even worse .So since it will be almost impossible not to feel under-appreciated, neglected, etc. in such extreme circumstances, this is a great week to focus on unconditional respect! The challenge I propose to myself (and anyone who wants to join me!) this week is to show unconditional respect in the following specific ways:

Mon - Thank him for a specific sacrifice he makes or has recently made for the family
Tues - Ask him in the evening what I can do to ease the stress of his day
Wed - Serve him in an unsolicited way (back rub, packing his lunch, etc.)
Thur - Tell him about a specific quality or trait that I find sexually attractive

Beautiful things always seem to happen when we shift our focus away from ourselves, so here goes. I realize it won't make things any simpler or easier, but at the very least it will prevent me from doing some unproductive and potentially destructive self pitying. Wish me luck!

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Order vs. Chaos

Really think about these two things for a moment. Maybe it’s on my mind because I have two babies under 14 months and chaos abounds, but I’ve been thinking a lot about how the Bible says that God is a god of order. And what is order really? Above all else I know that my fruitfulness as a wife, a mother, a worker, and a servant is directly proportional to the amount of order present in my life. It makes sense that order is right; everything functions better within it.

So a few days ago Bruce seemed irritated with me, and he started acted irritable to the point of being unkind. He left to run an errand, and I decided to text him about how we had left things. I tried to think of how I wanted to state my case: to describe how his actions were hurtful, defend where I was coming from, and explain what I felt was unfair… it all honestly made me feel very tired, especially while juggling an infant and pre-toddler. I knew I would go to a lot of trouble to say all of those things diplomatically, only to have my words come out wrong and/or be received poorly. I could almost guarantee it, and I just didn’t have the energy to waste. Nonetheless, we needed to be right with each other so doing nothing was also not an option. Suddenly it dawned on me that I did NOT need to state my case; I merely needed to let him know how I felt and ask him what he wants me to do about it. He is the boss, so his word is final… Changing my focus to simply meeting his expectations rather than how to align my expectations with his surprisingly felt clear and even freeing. Rather than wrack my brain to find the most concise and diplomatic way to speak my mind, I simply texted: “The way you’re treating me feels unloving- if I’ve been disrespectful to cause that please let me know what I’ve done so I can avoid doing it again.” Sure enough, he had been feeling disrespected. Of course we were both misinterpreting each other’s actions, but discussing that in detail would have led us down a defensive and destructive road. And we didn’t have to go there since the goal was much simpler than that: we merely needed to get right again based on his expectations. He told me what he felt I had done wrong, and before I could launch into defending myself and what I had meant, I remembered the goal and merely asked what I should do differently in the future. Oddly enough, focusing only on that eventually enabled both of us to understand the other more fully. I won’t pretend the whole exchange was easy or that we handled it perfectly because it wasn’t and we didn’t. Even still, things were made infinitely simpler (and got us back to adequately loving and respecting each other much faster) by maintaining this hierarchy, this order within our marriage.

Order… one of us has to be the boss; we absolutely have equal value, but only one of us can be the head. Two heads don’t work. And he is the one who has to be the head because, though society works hard to smother it, God planted a desire within him to lead and a desire within me to submit. Why is that so politically incorrect? Because secular society does not understand equal worth outside of sameness. Sincere Christianity understands it perfectly: we are all sinful, all sins are the same, Jesus paid for every single one of us… we all have true worth in God’s eyes, and not one person matters more than another. When that is truly and deeply clear, having different strengths and weaknesses isn’t frustrating or offensive, it’s beautiful. I admit I’m still programmed to forget, but the more moments of clarity I have the more I glimpse the true perfection of the whole system, and the more I want to function within that perfection. I trust my husband’s leadership, but more significantly I trust my Creator’s system. Bruce isn’t always a perfect leader and I am often an imperfect submissive, but this system of order has never failed us. (It should go without saying, but to be clear I am not saying that God’s design specifically encompasses marital spanking and discipline; they are just one flawed human implementation of His perfect design.) I think about the friction and confusion that existed in our marriage before we honed in on all of this, and I can’t believe the difference. We did have moments of clarity before, but they were interspersed with confusion and frustration that was often aimed at each other. If I’m honest with myself there was a fair amount of anger, hurt, miscommunication, bitterness, and disconnect. The system of two heads just didn’t work. His leadership and my submission may be far from perfect. And if we’re discussing flaws then really the entire idea of Domestic Discipline may well fall into that category. But there is no question in my mind that imperfection within a perfect system is far superior to any kind of functioning in a system that quite simply does not work.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

A Reluctant Testament to Harshness

Since the birth of my son 6 weeks ago my pain tolerance is stunningly low. Thankfully DD stayed very present throughout our two back to back pregnancies, but the intensity and harshness of the spankings lessened quite a bit. So now that my body is returning to normal, the physical harshness of Bruce's corrections is doing the same. I'm guessing postpartum hormones are also at play because I can tell that he is taking my struggling into account, but it doesn't really seem to matter; it takes one good set of strikes to set me panting and gritting my teeth just trying to get through it.

I can't say that I like the harshness on any level, although I certainly prefer it over spankings that are too light. I've come to accept that my fantasies of getting those sexy not-too-harsh-not-too-light spankings are just that; fantasies. The maintenance and discipline I get generally ranges from past my tolerance limit to way past my tolerance limit. Bruce has explained his reasoning in this more than once: if I don't mind the spanking then submitting to it really isn't a relinquishing of control at all. He's also mentioned that the intensity of the spanking needs to match the intensity of my personality. So regardless of my opinions and preferences, the harshness is here to stay. And if I'd like to be able to readjust to it as well as possible then there's no getting around it: we've got some work to do.

So before I could lose my nerve I asked him if he could help me get myself back in shape so that I could submit better. He assured me that we would have a thorough session the next night, and wow was he serious about that. The anticipation all day had me so nervous by the time he sent me to the bedroom, and to my horror he came in after me and pulled out the strap, looped cane, and paddle, and laid them all across the bed. Perhaps because of the gravity of that I suddenly felt very shy and exposed, to the point that I couldn't look him in the eye. As I undressed while he waited I honored my resolve to tell him that I trust him and that I want to submit well and that I WILL submit well. He pulled me over his lap and gave me a long hard warm-up that already had me squirming. When he started in with the strap I was again panting and seriously struggling to maintain composure. I forced myself to hold still, but when he moved onto the looped cane I couldn't help crying out. He told me that I needed to be quiet, so when I felt him switch to the lexan paddle I put my hand over my own mouth. Doing that helped me stay quiet somehow, and I forced myself to stay still even though the spanking was excruciating by this point.

My efforts to convey a submissive heart through demonstrating a submissive body were effective; he paused to rub me and soothingly remark that I was being a good girl. The thrill of realizing he was pleased with my stillness made my determination to remain still skyrocket. Nonetheless, it felt like the paddling went on forever, and although I remained still I started crying. Eventually I was sobbing, and he leaned down to me and made me look him in the eye. He said I was going to be strong now, and he somehow adjusted so that he could watch my face as the spanking continued. To lose all privacy in reacting to the pain left me feeling indescribably vulnerable and exposed, but still he remained. He leaned in to kiss me, and again I thrilled at the awareness that he was pleased at my submission. His sexy and skilled hands began mixing pain with pleasure, and he continued kissing me between sets of strikes. He told me how I deserved the spanking, and how I needed to take it well. He finally put the paddle down and finished with a hard hand spanking, and by this point my backside absolutely felt like it was on fire.

When it was over we made love, kissing and connecting more deeply than we have in a long time. When I laid in his arms afterward I told him it was almost cathartic the way I have to give trust over to him, and to surrender all control. I asked him if he felt similarly, and although he laughed at the word cathartic he said that yes it felt nice. Again, I can't say that I will ever like the harshness, but I guess that's the point. While I want a spanking that is not too harsh to handle, experiencing true surrender to him fills a much deeper void. Somehow he knows this, and I feel so cared for that he bypasses what I think I want to give me what I really need instead. In the end it's an ambivalent and strange feeling, and I admit that some part of me does wish I would never have to submit to something so hard. The dread I feel beforehand is almost crushing, and the pain I feel while it's happening is intensely upsetting. But the connection and closeness we experience as a result is so sweet that it absolutely overshadows everything else. While parts of this dynamic are fun and playful, the responsibility to lead and the commitment to submit is more than serious. He expects me to trust him completely, and he strives every day to be worthy of that trust. And oh I respect that so much. I love him so fiercely that the opportunity to show him just how fully I do trust him is truly worth all of the unpleasantness along the way.