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.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

What Kind of Person Wants This

I've been awake a lot in the middle of the night these past few weeks. The endless amount of late night infant feedings have necessitated finding something to occupy my mind in order to keep me awake. Bruce has frankly insisted I find something that does NOT involve babies or motherhood, which pathetically left me with no ideas. Meanwhile, for the past year or so I've had the privilege of getting to know Jason's Girl (see Taming of the Shrew blog to the right). I love our friendship, in part because it is wonderful talking with a fellow submissive who is emotionally well-adjusted and in a longstanding, stable D/s relationship. Bruce is fully aware of the value I place on our connection, and as she has recently become a major success as a Romance Novelist (pen name Jane Henry), he generously suggested I read some of her books to fill the time. I've not read Romance Novels before, but several midnight hours and six books later I can personally testify that her books are fantastic! (I believe her blog has a link to her author's page; if you enjoy Romance Novels it's definitely worth checking out.) Anyway, after finishing her Boston Doms series I decided to further peruse the D/s Romance Novel scene. When I kept bumping into reviews of a D/s book by a New York Times best selling author I eventually gave in and downloaded the kindle version. Imagine my disgust when I found that, just like 50 Shades, the characters who engage in a D/s relationship were once victims of abuse. Of course I'm in strong support of healing from traumatic pasts however necessary, and if having this type of a relationship is helpful in doing that then I applaud those who do so. Nonetheless, the perpetual stigmatization of D/s relationships correlating to abuse victims frankly pisses me off. What is that really saying anyway? Among other things, it suggests that D/s relationships are so twisted that they only serve as a vice or even therapy for those who have suffered physical or sexual trauma. I know firsthand that this is entirely inaccurate, but how do I validate that argument? Well, with all of the extra time I've had lately (ha, ha, HA) I decided to further investigate the validity of this correlation.

Much to my surprise, several reputable websites have plenty to say on the topic of D/s relationships and those who participate in them. A study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine in May 2013 was featured in an article by Psychology Today; they highlighted the study's findings that "BDSM Practitioners," namely dominants and submissives, were actually more conscientious, less neurotic, and had a better sense of well-being than those with "vanilla sexual preferences." The article went on to say: "Common assumptions about people who participate in BDSM are that they are psychologically anxious and maladjusted, acting out a past history of sexual abuse, however... available research evidence suggests that these assumptions are probably not true" Well then. How about that?

They weren't the only ones to weigh in on the character of those interested in dominance and submission. LiveScience.com discussed similar research at length with this conclusion: "...Studies have failed to show evidence that enjoying sex with a side of pain is linked to psychological problems... in fact, these studies suggest that BDSM practitioners may be better off psychologically than the general public." The article went on to say that such individuals "tend to be more aware of their sexual needs and desires than vanilla people," thus implying that these people are more likely to have a healthier sex life and a healthier sense of self.

Another reputable entity addressing D/s participants was The Huffington Post: they produced an article stating that past assumptions that BDSM proclivities correlate with previous abuse or mental disorders are contrary to research, and that people with such preferences actually score better on many mental health indicators than the general population.

Finally, the Smithsonian website cited several studies indicating that a staggering 36-65% of the general American population have BDSM preferences. What fascinating and validating statistics! And yet even the Smithsonian observed that "In spite of the evidence that BDSM is commonplace—normal, even—those who openly adhere to the lifestyle are frequently marginalized."

Marginalized indeed. Now I admit I have only been a part of the D/s community for a few years, but virtually everyone I've encountered within it has faced a time where they assumed that their desire for such a power exchange meant that something must be wrong with them psychologically. And even though society has a rich history of inarguably erred judgment in regards to "acceptable" and "moral," its marginalization of such preferences play a huge role in this self-doubt. Heaven knows I've been there myself. But maybe its time we turn the tables and shame society for its high-handed ignorance. I trust the man I've pledged my life to so fully that I find empowerment in fully surrendering control to him. He loves me so much that he desires to commit himself to the worthiness that such power and responsibility requires. While this challenges and stretches us, it certainly doesn't make us any more broken or damaged than the rest of the population. It does make us better, more selfless versions of ourselves, more fulfilled, and deeper in love than ever. The way I see it, that makes us pretty damn healthy.





Sunday, May 21, 2017

Emotional and Physical Submission

A lot has happened since my last post- my baby boy is now just over two weeks old, and I am now over thirty pounds lighter! Having two babies almost back to back has made me forget how nice it feels to NOT be pregnant... no more swollen feet or struggling to get out of bed... the best part is that Bruce can once again wrap his strong arms around me and hold me tight when we sleep- not that we're doing much of that right now! Of course life is crazy with a newborn and a one year old. But I've still had a few note-worthy moments of submission.

One such moment happened after our roughest night yet; we'd just completed night #3 of virtually no sleep, and were suddenly dealing with nursing issue as well. Add postpartum hormones to the mix, and I admit I was more than a little weepy. Bruce told me I needed to try to be positive, and my gut reaction was to defensively suggest that he have more compassion, as he couldn't possibly understand postpartum hormones. Somehow that thought led me to recognize and lament how far we were from things being so right between us; him being pleased with me for submitting, and me enjoying his consequential affection. By some grace it occurred to me that this was still possible, so I decided to be the cheerful wife he was seeking no matter how ridiculous it seemed. I forced myself to stop crying, put on my baby sling, and wore my newborn while I made breakfast and straightened up the kitchen. To my surprise after faking pleasant for twenty minutes or so, I actually felt quite a lot better. And then I realized that this is what he had wanted for me in encouraging me to be positive- he wasn't lacking compassion at all, he was right there with me trying to help me find a way to beat the baby blues. He did it because he cared AND because he had the perspective that I was lacking. Gee I think this realization has hit me more than a few times... shame on me for forgetting it so often. 

Another more physical moment happened a few nights ago: for weeks now he's been telling me that it will take a fair amount of maintenance to make up for lost time and to bring us back to where we need to be. A few mornings ago he suggested we may need to have the first of many catch-up spankings that evening. So after an exhausting day with my one-year-old and very needy newborn, I reluctantly paused next to the bed and asked permission to crawl under the covers and go to sleep. Just as I feared, from our bathroom sink he gave a firm "No." My heart sank a bit, and almost immediately I could feel my breathing speed up; it had been so long since I had gotten a serious spanking! My body wasn't ready for this. My mind wasn't ready for this. He came to me and had me bend over the bed while he reiterated that I need to stop talking back, and that we need to get back on track. I actually whimpered at his removing my pants and underwear, and by the end of his warm-up I couldn't help but cry out. When he started with the paddle I could tell he was using less force than usual, but even still I just could not take the pain. Every strike reached my core and left me reeling. He asked me to confirm that I've needed correction like this, and after some prompting I managed to respectfully affirm that I did. As the spanking continued I panted for breath and after several more strikes I heard myself beg for it to stop. He paused to drop the paddle and move his hands to my hips, firmly but affectionately. In a calm, even voice he said: "Stop. Breathe, baby. Breathe." I focused on his command, and somehow his firmness mixed with affection made me want to obey him more than ever. Soon he was holding the paddle again, telling me to bend further, and when he began again the tears started immediately. I absolutely could not take any more, and I needed for it to stop. But regardless of that fact, it simply wasn't stopping... like it or not I was subject to his discretion and there was nothing I could do to change that... I had No Control. Over the situation or even over my own body... And then once again I felt the gravity of truly having no control rush over me. It had been a while, but the feeling was familiar; humbling, scary, and yet strangely so very freeing. When he finally dropped the paddle on the bed he held me in position for a moment, and I waited for him to bring me back to my feet. When he did he hugged me hard, and I sobbed into his shoulder. I told him that I'd forgotten how scary and awful this can be, and his embrace tightened in the most perfect way. He said now that my body was back to normal we will be doing it more so that I don't forget again, and that it will be good for me to keep the memory of this feeling fresh. I cringingly but sincerely agreed. 

While it had been happening all I could think about was getting through the next set of strikes, and all I could feel was an overwhelming feeling of helplessness. But when it was over the realization of having submitted to him so completely felt almost euphoric. It made the prior scariness and discomfort worthwhile, and I even regretted that I hadn't taken it better. Here I am, a grown woman being spanked by her husband- It is crazy how something so unconventional and so simple can be such a powerful symbol of submission, but it is. Lying in his arms with a stinging backside I suddenly remembered how intentional and challenging it is to relinquish control, to trust someone else so completely. I suddenly remembered how fulfilling and right it feels once the feeling of helplessness subsides. I would imagine that in a similar way the responsibility and rightness of leading came rushing back to Bruce as well. I won't deny that Domestic Discipline sounds strange to anyone who is unfamiliar with the concept. But I cannot deny its power and effectiveness in reminding us of the value of leadership and submission in a marriage. It does have moments of serious unpleasantness, and it does stretch us in new and sometimes unsettling ways. But the connection and clarity it brings overshadows all of that. Even now in the midst of physical and emotional exhaustion I am more thankful than ever that we have it in our lives.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

The Final Countdown

I am so overwhelmed right now- baby #2 is due in two weeks, and it seems like everything is a mess. Work is crazy as I'm trying to transfer everything to others before I leave, but thankfully I only have a few more days of that. The nursery is probably 75% ready, but some major things still need done. And then we need to find my nursing pump, install the car seats, etc... so much to think about! 

I am definitely overwhelmed, but I am also a little scared. We just learned last week that Bruce will have to be regularly working overtime from May to August, all while working full time through the last year of his graduate program. So for those first three crazy months of my son's life Bruce will be away from home about 60 hours a week, and when he's home he will still have work to do. Frankly, I am devastated by this- those first few months are so draining that when you experience it together you almost can't help bonding in the intensity of it all. But this time we're each going to be so drained in very separate ways, and I can't imagine how this won't drive us apart. Even last time there was a slight disconnect when he went back to work: I couldn't really understand what it was like to work all day and then come home to such a high-needs environment, and he couldn't fully understand what it was like to have no break from the constant dependence of such a little baby. We worked through it, but it was hard, and now each of us will literally have double the stress. I'm just not sure how we will make it work. 

But Bruce assures me that somehow we WILL make it work. And he assures me that DD will be very present, which even at it's ugliest and most upsetting does help prevent the escalation of nastiness that can ensue in its place. 

I do know that feeling under-appreciated is the single issue that traps us in a downward spiral of disconnect and frustration toward each other. So even though it will be easy to get lost in my own needs during this time, it is critical to our relationship that I stop and focus on how I appreciate all that he does. And not just say "I appreciate you," but to show it, through affection, little acts of service, and acceptance of things that I know he cannot control. Of course all of this will work best if he shows his appreciation for all I do through the same. As always, the more affection and appreciation he shows the easier it will be for me to submit, especially in the areas that are hard for me to be submissive. But even if these needs aren't met I will do all that I can to display unconditional submission, because as I've mentioned more than once, that's where it all matters most, where the rubber meets the road so to speak. 

So if I don't post in two weeks then you'll know that I went into labor on or before my actual due date! If that's the case, I've been excused from posting until next time. Whew these next ten weeks or so will be rough, no doubt about that. But I love that I will have this blog to return to every two weeks, to take a moment to stop and process our use of DD along the way. Wish me luck friends. And if you think of it, feel free to send some submissive vibes my way :)

Monday, April 10, 2017

50 Shades from a D/s Perspective

So Bruce and I finally caught up with the rest of America and watched 50 Shades of Grey (the first one) last week. Many D/s couples didn't like the films, so we went into it expecting to see a glamorized, dramatic, and inaccurate representation of the Dominant/submissive lifestyle. Maybe for that reason we actually kind of enjoyed some of it. The acting was badly overdone at the beginning, but they seemed to get into a groove and eventually it was kind of fun, if only superficially. In my opinion the highest point of the film was the recurring theme of flying- the symbol of trust, abandon, freedom, etc. was a surprisingly sweet and clever subtlety that pervaded throughout the film. We both honestly found it somewhat entertaining until the last few scenes, at which point our reaction to the film totally changed.

**Spoiler Alert**

By totally changed, I mean that even our physical posture shifted from being cuddled up on the couch to a sort of uncomfortable stiffened disgust. I can't remember my specific outward reaction but I remember that Bruce eventually uttered, half to himself, something along the lines of "what the fuck?" Wtf indeed.

At the end of the film there is a weird, disjointed escalation of events; Christian comments that he wants to punish Anastasia (the reason is unclear- maybe because she won't commit to his clear, specific, and admittedly bizarre terms...?). She says she wants him to punish her then, to show her how bad the worst can be so she can better understand him. Ok so it's already getting a little weird, but from this point on it just became so unclear and disjointed that it was actually offensive. I grant that Bruce and I may have felt that way because of our specific use of DD/Ds but for the sake of him and me (and others who have a similar dynamic), allow me to break it all down:

1) He tells her he is going to hit her six times, and he expects her to count... and then he just starts doing it.
No lecture, no reiteration of how he cares, no stating the value of punishment. He doesn't even offer any clarification on why he is upset. He just starts punishing her. [And not at all central to the point, but he's so hardcore that he has written contracts and a special room, yet his worst punishment is six strikes with a leather implement? The strikes are supposedly horribly severe, but I can't imagine any real life submissive identifying such a punishment as severe, much less 'the worst']. Anyway the whole punishment scene is a terrible example of what I've found to be both the hardest to swallow and the most meaningful part of a D/s relationship. Of course every couple is different, but as Bruce and I do take things to the point of harsh, not-so-erotic punishments, I believe this is the heart of it all- it is in these moments of "wow I really hate everything about this" that the concept of true power exchange becomes very real for me. Trust is built, we're both pushed farther in our roles, and the whole relationship changes in an almost tangible way. With the movie, the relationship debate raging throughout the entire film is explicitly addressing such a power exchange, and yet it is at this point that things become the most vague, conflicting, and meaningless. Seriously?

2) He finds gratification in the actual strikes, like in the pain itself.
I'm obviously not on the pain-inflicting end of things, but from what I understand and from what Bruce articulates to me, sadism so not the point of any of it. Maybe a little pain is erotic, but really hurting the one you love in the context of something serious like this? I feel strongly that the pain is a necessary by-product of the power exchange- by itself it lacks meaning and it certainly lacks eroticism. In example Bruce has never initiated intimacy after a severe punishment, and after severe maintenance (ahem, both of which he clearly articulates the point and value of before finishing) our intimacy holds a pointedly more intense sort of affection. Again, every couple is different, but for Bruce and me the motivation and symbolism behind the pain is the point. In Bruce's words "The infliction of pain is not for my benefit, but for yours"- the idea is for me to eventually benefit from his direction, which is logical and at the same time erotic to each of us for different reasons; for me because I can see that he so strongly desires to lead me, and for him because he can see that I trust his direction so completely. The giving and receiving of pain feels like a very innate aspect of the dynamic- I have to say that when the movie was over we both found it challenging to articulate what we knew and felt to be true. Still, I know very few couples who would say that the pain itself is the point.

3) Even after endless discussion defining dominance and submission, she is horrified at the seriousness of the punishment.
Wow. So the movie sets up dominance and submission to be acceptable if unconventional, but only on an erotic level. When things get serious, a line is apparently crossed and the whole thing becomes morally reprehensible. I guess the suggestion is that one size fits all- eroticism laced with dominance and submission is okay, but serious moments of dominance and submission are only for messed up people- specifically those that have suffered child abuse and are "fifty shades of fucked up." Ouch. Even worse, the movie ENDS this way. What? Yeah Christian, I was okay when we explored the concept of dominance and submission at length and to extremes [i.e. sleeping alone, anal fisting... whew...], but now that you spanked me really hard and without foreplay It. Is. Over. Society is already full of people that find dominance and submission to be morally reprehensible; it felt pretty awful that even 50 Shades of Grey portrayed some really valid aspects of D/s in the same way.

I actually feel a lot more lonely in the lifestyle since watching it. I guess it just seems like a great opportunity was wasted, and that the chasm of misunderstanding between the D/s and Vanilla community just grew so much wider. It makes me want to go on a talk show or something and explain how they got it all wrong. Haha, now that would be sure to earn me a true punishment! But I guess as awful as punishments in our house are, I can at least be grateful that they are far deeper and more meaningful than those of the 50 Shades variety.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

DD-Induced Emotional Breakdowns

We've experienced two different DD-induced emotional breakdowns just this week. Allow me to reiterate for the hundredth time how we are in an intense phase of life right now...

So sometimes submission is so deadly serious that it is devoid of any type of eroticism, at least in the moment, and the situation you face tests your capacity to submit in the most extreme ways. A few nights ago we had one such moment. We were talking about something meaningful to me, and then suddenly (at least from my perspective) he said we needed to stop talking about it for now. This is classic OCD looping; I think we're having a productive conversation only to find that the other party feels we are merely rehashing. The horribly disorienting part is that I can never recognize this, even after it is brought to my attention. When he said we had to stop I think I knew somewhere within me that doing so was probably the best course of action, but most of me just felt so frustrated and cut off.

I tried to calmly explain myself, but the more I tried the more frustrated we both became... nearly a half hour later he finally demanded I retrieve the paddle, and the anger and hurt I felt in that moment was so incredibly strong. I begged him not to spank me right then, but he wouldn't have it. Oh I felt he was being so unfair and off-base. Luckily we've both previously identified fairness as an invalid aspect of whether or not I submit, so I knew I had to obey. I angrily did as I was told, and soon I was bent over the easy chair while he briefly recapped the situation in a lecture. I felt so angry that when he asked if I understood I chose silence, even though I knew it meant receiving more strikes, rather than affirm his logic. He of course spanked me more in response, and I merely clenched my jaw and cried angry tears. The spanking hurt so badly but part of me just didn't care. After a while I literally couldn't take any more and finally had no choice but to affirm that it was right to stop. I did so as briefly as possible, and when he sent me to return the paddle I even swore at him under my breath. Back on the couch he insisted I sit close to him, and he put his arms around me while I resentfully tolerated his embrace.

We watched a show together, and although he refused to let me express myself, he didn't stop holding me. Eventually I softened enough to at least sincerely pray for help to put it out of my mind, and of course from there it wasn't long before I not only accepted his embrace but clung to it. He had done exactly what we'd agreed on, and I had been the one to not uphold my end of the bargain by resisting so heavily. I regretted my actions and anger so much, and once again felt so grateful to have found DD. He finally has the tools to shut me down before I can ruin the whole night. Pathetic that I'm that broken, but there it is. When I think back on it now, the whole thing does seem erotic, but there wasn't even the faintest hint of that while it was happening. But I strongly believe that submission without eroticism, these times are what make the dynamic truly authentic.

I had another somewhat different DD-induced emotional breakdown within a night or so of the previous breakdown. While this one was gentler, more loving, and devoid of anger, any breakdown is nonetheless upsetting, intense, and frankly exhausting. I had dressed especially nice for work that day because I knew we were going out to dinner together that evening. Heels, a pretty blouse, matching jewelry, and even matching lace underwear... before I was pregnant this would happen at least twice a week or more, but lately (as I've been pregnant for nearly the past two years now) it happens far far less. By the time we finished dinner, put our daughter to bed, and collapsed on the chaise lounge in our bedroom it was unavoidably clear that he hadn't noticed my efforts in the slightest. In fact, he asked why I still hadn't changed out of my work clothes! I began to do so, admitting that I wished he would have noticed the difference, not that there's much that is sexually desirable about a 7+ month pregnant woman. He came to me and hugged me, apologizing for not noticing. He said he had thought I looked nice but hadn't really stopped to think why, and true or not that made me feel a little better.

At this point I was almost completely undressed, a state I avoid as much as possible with my very pregnant figure. He guided me toward the bed and I reached for my tank top. When he pulled my hand away I begged for him to let me cover up a little, but he said no. Suddenly the vulnerability and insecurity of being so exposed in a time that I wished not to be had me crying hard. The vulnerability somehow felt so much deeper than just clothes. He spoke gently and lovingly, but spanked me long and hard for "saying stupid and untrue shit about my wife, and the mother of my children." As the loving sincerity of his words washed over me I cried harder, profoundly aware of the fulfilling of a need that I didn't even realize I had. I needed his approval and his praise. And in the humility of being overworked and very pregnant I needed to feel a little dignity. Strangely enough, in that moment he was giving me just that. When the spanking was over we made love and I settled into the crook of his arm feeling exhausted but very cherished and loved.

So there it is: two breakdowns in one week. Wow is this a time of life we will remember forever with its unrelenting way of stretching us both. Nonetheless, the closeness and growth that both of us have been experiencing is rewarding to say the least. I admit I am thoroughly and utterly exhausted. But all things considered I really wouldn't have it any other way.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Using My Words

Since I really am a bit of a control freak Bruce pretty much runs the show DD wise- the when, why, where, and how is always his deal. The idea is that I keep him informed about how I'm feeling, and he keeps that in mind as he makes decisions. But when time and energy is desperately lacking it is easy to just let him make the decisions and forget about the keeping him informed part. Since I'm an emotionally transparent person he can usually tell when I'm not communicating my needs, but I seriously have been so wiped out that even I haven't thought about how I'm feeling enough to realize that I wasn't communicating like I should have been.

But last week I was talking with a wise submissive friend of mine about submission amid exhaustion, and with her help I realized that I DO have some thoughts and feelings concerning our use of DD right now. Specifically I feel like I need more reiteration of my responsibility to submit, and more reassurance of his presence as leader. Of course meeting these needs is not solely Bruce’s responsibility. Still, we originally agreed that I would share how I’m feeling so I figured I would at least do that. And so when we crawled into bed a few nights ago I referenced a joke he made about my needing more maintenance, and admitted that more frequent maintenance may actually be helpful for me.

Funny how no amount of closeness relieves the awkwardness and humility of admitting that as an adult woman I may benefit from being spanked more frequently. Bruce and I tell each other everything, but it was still truly painful for me to spit out. He responded by agreeing that more maintenance would be good for me, and assured me that he would try to make it a more frequent occurrence. Not only is he unwilling (with good reason) to commit to a scheduled frequency, but lately there are at least three nights a week where I absolutely cannot stay awake past 9:00. So no promises, but I knew that he at least knew how I felt.

So flash forward to a few nights later, Bruce informed me before dinner that I would be getting heavy maintenance later that night. I asked for this, and I appreciated that he was following through. Logically I knew that going through this would help me, but emotionally and physically I already felt so desperate for it to NOT happen. As usual I was completely depleted at the end of the day, and nothing sounded worse than heavy maintenance. To make things worse, by 9:00 he was knee-deep in work and I was extremely exhausted. I asked if I could sleep on the couch until he was finished, and he said that was fine so long as I knew I would be getting it later on regardless. I really must have been tired because despite the heavy dread I was feeling that’s pretty much the last moment I remember until an hour or so later.

He woke me and we went downstairs. I immediately remembered what was coming, but said nothing as we brushed our teeth and got ready for bed. Soon after he told me to undress, and in no time at all I found myself over his lap on the bed. He gave me a long hard warmup and already I was fighting tears, perhaps a combination of physical exhaustion and increased blood blow during pregnancy. He gently told me that I needed to try to be stronger as it would be getting a lot worse. Sure enough, it took exactly three strikes with the lexan paddle before I was sobbing into the pillow. I wanted to stay calm but I really felt as if I couldn’t take it. Before long he was firmly insisting I quiet down and hold still as I was crying out into the pillow and struggling hard to stay in position. For the first time ever during maintenance I felt the need to tell him I love him, so I sobbingly did so when he paused between strikes. He softened momentarily as he assured me that he loves me too but that I was long overdue for a hard session. He even asked if I realized as much and I quickly agreed that he was right. I knew that he was but it didn’t make it any more emotionally or physically bearable. After what felt like an eternity it was finally over and he initiated intimacy. In fact, having reached a much needed emotional release it took a great deal of effort to stop crying even though the spanking had stopped. During intimacy I felt very reconnected to him, and I believe he felt the same. Afterward I laid in the crook of his arm and he told me that even though I had struggled he was proud of me for submitting. While I’m certain I will dread it just as much the next time, I did feel reassured of his leadership and reminded of my responsibility to submit. I hate the term “survival mode,” but we both truly are spent unlike ever before, and in a sense we are just trying to make it through right now. Still, we went out of our way to make it work; I went out of my way to pinpoint and articulate my feelings, and he went out of his way to accommodate my needs. Throughout the next few months we won’t always have enough energy left to go the extra mile. Still, it’s nice to know that we can do it when necessary. It’s even nicer to know that no matter how spent we are, doing so is totally worth it.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

DD Decision Making

Have I mentioned we are in a stressful time of life right now? Ha, seriously though we have never been so physically and emotionally taxed as we are now. Many other people with kids close in age have mentioned something similar- yeah it's great overall, but those first few years are pretty rough.

And so again, amid all of the stress, I want to take some time to focus on the positives. We may not be the best model for DD especially right now, but let me nonetheless revisit what works for us within the dynamic.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Maintenance/ Role Affirmation

Bruce and I are most definitely NOT the poster couple for Domestic Discipline. Nonetheless, for over two years now we've been pretty happily living this lifestyle, and among all of our blunders we have definitely found a few things that really make sense, for us at least. Maybe blogging about one of them will allow me to share with others and process things for myself all at once...

Maintenance/ Role Affirmation
I asked Bruce in the beginning if we could do this type of thing on a somewhat predictable schedule, but this is not at all in line with his personality (and I needed practice in accepting that things aren't always predictable and organized) so for us these are unscheduled and generally happen anywhere between two and five times a week.

While discipline spankings are horrible (but effective), and playful spankings are pleasurable, these types of spankings are a little of both. For us their function is to:
        - Display Dominance
        - Bring about Submission
        - Allow us to Reconnect
From my experience it is fruitless to expect that all of the above happen all of the time. Nonetheless when they do happen, wow. These are the things that make that happen for us:

1) They are past my tolerance limit
Bruce spanks hard. Of course he doesn't just wail on me thoughtlessly, he is always gauging my reactions, etc. But he errs on the side of too hard rather than too soft. He makes sure to achieve the point where I really feel I cannot take anymore, and then he takes me past it. When this happens the gravity of true submission is unavoidably present, and I am forced to realize anew that:
- I am really not in control
- This isn't about what I want, it's about what's best for me
- I've given control to someone I trust completely
- Surrendering control, while somewhat unpleasant, is surprisingly freeing

2) They are followed by intimacy
When he decides I've had enough he initiates intimacy. In this moment I feel relief, excitement, and a sort of sense of accomplishment. Oftentimes, but not always, the sex is rough, giving him and me one final and more pleasurable opportunity to respectively display dominance and submission. Here submission is still a focus, but meeting the other's intimate needs becomes the central focus. It's here that the pervading sensuality of the whole dynamic is laid out, beautiful, simple, and profound.

3) They end with affection
This is the part that ties it all together for me. I'm sorry to admit that when we are crunched for time or especially exhausted, this can get cut short and neglected. But when we're doing it right I nestle into his chest or the crook of his arm while he rubs my arm and tells me he loves me. Sometimes I am feeling needy and prod him to verbalize (if he hasn't already) that I have submitted well and that he is happy with me, but a lot of times we lay still together and not much is said- his gentle loving touch says everything. For me it drives home the point that he is doing all of this because he loves me, and for us women that is really the crux of it all. I can find peace with forfeiting quite a lot of my way and quell a host of emotions when I'm reminded that he loves me. There is really no better feeling in a marriage.

So there it is, this is what makes it work for us. I realize some would take issue with part or all of what I've outlined, but the beautiful thing that makes this dynamic even more intimate is that every couple is made up of two unique personalities and two unique ways of meeting each other's needs. The important thing is that we do meet each other's needs. And speaking of that, it looks like it's time for me to put this down for the night ;)

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Unconditional Submission

Well Sunday night has arrived, and here I am. A few hours ago I was complaining about all that needs done this evening when Bruce suddenly said "so when during all of that will you be working on your blog?" His tone made it clear that he wasn't really asking a question at all, so I rearranged my priorities and found the time. As usual he is right- the things that seem important often aren't, and the things I never get around to are sometimes the things that need the most attention.

This is a common theme, his directing me in a way I disagree with only to find later that he was pushing me in exactly the right direction after all. It reinforces to me the logic behind God's directive for the man to be the leader even though both are of equal worth. Women really are better at several things than men, but that goes the other way around as well. And it turns out that this emotion and intuition that enables us to do so many things gracefully and effectively can sometimes get in the way of leading. Similarly their logical cut-and-dried approach actually enhances their capacity to make the right call for the family.

Ok I'm waxing religious here, but bear with me on this line of logic. Really God's model for us is pretty damn simple, but left to our own devices we've managed to complicate and convolute it beyond functionality. Even the directive to submit is simple. Ephesians 5:22 says: "Wives, be submissive to your husbands... the husband is the head of the wife, just as Christ is the head and Savior of the church..." Of course it also goes on to direct husbands to love their wives in a seriously self-sacrificing way, but both directives are clearly and undeniably independent of each other. It's not an if/then statement; it's unconditional. Society encourages us to lose sight of the unconditional aspect, but it's this aspect that is really the key to making it all work so beautifully.

Think about the simplicity of unconditional submission. Maybe it's because I over complicate everything, but I find serious freedom in this simplicity. For the first five years of our marriage I grappled with the task of determining how and when Bruce was worthy of my respect. Society shouted so many things in my ear... don't be a doormat, HE needs to respect YOU first, if you don't demand respect then you have no self-respect, you have it harder than he does anyway... It was exhausting. When I really honestly evaluate that time in my life, a major part of my heart was always aching to simply submit, but my brain prevented me from following my heart, making things incredibly complicated. Nowhere in the directive does "worthiness" factor in, and rightfully so. This is exactly why our general unworthiness is gently but emphatically made clear throughout the entire gospel; we are never truly worthy of His grace, so we can never under any circumstances feel qualified to judge. He knew that the world would only work right if people really knew they had no right to judge (of course it doesn't actually work right because we don't ever actually remember this!). But in the same way, He knew that a merit-based marriage would be doomed to failure, where an unconditionally committed and selfless marriage would only beget more unconditional love and selflessness in return.

Yeah it's still a struggle. But when the internal dialogue changes from "I would be submissive if only he would..." to "I need to be more submissive right now" everything becomes infinitely simpler. So much simpler than I understood it to be for so long. Once we quiet the voice of society and make the first move to swallow our pride, the rest is easy. I'll be honest that actually committing to doing this sometimes starts with a not so great feeling of obligation, and sometimes it really is a struggle the whole way through. Nonetheless, it almost always ends with a peaceful calm that simply feels right. Hmm... in this way I guess the whole process is actually a lot like the process of getting a really sound spanking ;)

Sunday, January 15, 2017

An Unforgettable Night & A Blogging Promise

Hi all! So I've mentioned the craziness of my life lately- not only am I too busy to properly focus on submission, but I have absolutely no time left to process the intensity and complexities of a DD marriage. Out of necessity I have learned to simply process less, but doing so leaves me, as Bruce simply puts it, "fussier." He knows that blogging helps me emotionally, but he also knows that there is so little time left at the end of the day that it is hard to pull my laptop out and center myself to do it.

So at Christmas he found a solution: he bought me a really nice keyboard for my iPad, with the promise of establishing a blogging "plan" with me. Two weeks ago today here's what he decided: Sundays are Bruce's guy nights- he games or nerds out on sports, and I collapse onto the portable mattress by the fireplace to do some online shopping or catch up on a show he'd never watch, usually falling asleep within an hour or so whether I want to or not. So the plan is that I use this time to blog, and every other Sunday, ready or not, I have to post something. Throwing together a post over the course of a sleepy hour or two isn't really my writing style, but as Bruce reminds me it's better than just not doing it. He says it's on a trial basis at the moment, and in February we will determine if it is something to enforce long term. He also promised there will be very unpleasant consequences if it doesn't happen, so here goes. It may not be pretty, but ready or not I will be posting this tonight!

Now for the Impending Doom part: when we started this lifestyle Bruce informed me that I would not receive advanced notice for any maintenance or formal punishment spankings. It is a ridiculous understatement to say I am a planner, so I hated this. But that's why he did it, and that's what I love most about our dynamic; he keeps it authentic by doing what he truly believes is best for me, even if it's something that I disagree with.

Nonetheless, a week or so ago he announced in the morning that a serious punishment spanking would take place that evening. Wow do I actually love not knowing ahead of time! I was over the top nervous by the end of the night, but I must admit that my head was in a way better place having gone through the mental anguish-I-mean-preparation of knowing it was coming all day. So after that night he decided that occasionally he would give me advanced notice, and a few days ago he did just that. We were planning to do dinner and a movie sans baby, and he told me in the car well before noon that I should expect a severe spanking by the end of the night- partially maintenance, and partially accumulation of several instances of poor submission. Again I stressed all day; his hard spankings are seriously awful, awful enough that the dread overshadowed even the likelihood that we would reconnect afterward.

But through the dread I dutifully meditated on how much more submissive I wish to be, and by evening I knew that I more than deserved what was coming, and I committed to staying still during the punishment to punctuate my contrition. Of course I was also desperately nervous! When the evening wound down and the time finally came he made sure to give me a thorough warm-up, and graciously eased me in with the paddle. Eventually the strikes were hard enough that I was crying out, but I stayed almost perfectly still, which he loves although he never expects it. In between sets of strikes he lectured me, and wow was his lecture good. He talked about the importance of submission; how I need to not questioning his decision making, and that I need to remember how much he loves the family and takes his responsibility to lead seriously- that one really got me crying. Between sentences he would give me several hard strikes, and more than once I felt an urgency for it to stop, but every time he just kept going. After what felt like a very long time he paused and caressed my burning backside. He gently explained that it wasn't over yet, but he acknowledged that I was incredibly sore, and said he was very proud of my stillness. When he resumed the spanking he began mixing pleasure with pain, and the tone of his lecture became more affectionate... he needs me to trust him because he loves me so much... he would do anything for me... he will always take care of me... well after I couldn't take anymore he finally finished as I lay over his lap sobbing, emotionally and physically utterly exhausted. He laid down the paddle and initiated intimacy. I love this moment in the whole process so much- not only is the spanking over, but he is pleased enough with me that he desires to take me and to reconnect with me again. Although it was definitely rough the intensity was mixed with a sort of affectionate touch that is hard to explain other than to say that it felt deliciously loving.

Afterward we lay together and I relished the fantastic exchange we'd just had. A lot of times he and I handle DD more poorly than I'd like to admit; we get lost in ourselves and forget to put the other first. A lot of times the most important parts of leadership and submission are absent, and although the frustration doesn't escalate like it did pre-DD, it is still sometimes the most prevalent feeling remaining. But not this time. This was one of the times we got it right. One of the times I need to read back through and remember in the times when things aren't working so well. But for now I will savor the glow that still remains from that night. For now he is leading and I am submitting, and we are enjoying a feeling of trust and love and affection that makes the harder times so completely and undeniably worthwhile.