Saturday, July 12, 2014

The Forum Question of the Week #50


Hello all.  I hope you had a great week.  Mine wasn't bad.  Less productive than I'd hoped; more so than I'd feared.

Sometimes I detect a confluence of sorts, in which multiple seemingly random events all seem to point in a particular direction or play to a particular theme.  Call it Karma or Fate or whatever, some force seems to be giving events a nudge in a way designed to get your attention.  Lately, I've had some of that going on with respect to the notion of "surrender."  It is a notion that covers a lot of ground.  On a philosophical or spiritual basis, it means getting better at surrendering to what is.  Accepting the current state of affairs, and accepting what will come, without as much desire to change or control them. Letting life come as it is.  In my work life, it means being at least a little bit more accepting of the notion that every once in awhile I may actually need to give in to the will of others who are above me in the pecking order. Does my use of a whole long string of qualifiers demonstrate just how resistant I am that particular form of "surrender"?  ;-)

In my marriage, it means giving up my power so my wife can have more.  It means giving in to her will even when my own wants to rebel and even when being bossed or ordered around cuts against the grain of every fiber of my being.  But, that equalization of power was something we were expressly shooting for when we adopted DD.  And, for me, the idea of really "surrendering," of giving up control in some deep, fundamental way, was at the seductively terrifying core of a DD relationship in which corporal punishment might bring me to tears, and those potential tears have to me always represented the ultimate show of surrender.

One of the strains nudging me toward paying some more attention to the idea of "surrender" was a series of posts in the I'm Hers blog at www.im-hers.blogspot.com.  The blog's author has been exploring his need to be subjected to a deeper, more challenging dominance. One of the quotes that really resonated with me:

My feelings are changing. I’m realizing the value of being broken by her (if that is the correct word).  I know that by becoming completely hers, by being more accountable, by reframing my view of ‘whose first’ to be Katie at all times, by conforming to her will strengthen our bond.  I want to give myself more fully (or should I say completely) to her. 
And this:


I had aha moment a several weeks ago. I came to see just how much I wish to have Katie take me completely. I need less freedom. I need more accountability. I need to be broken and made to make her my first priority, putting my wants second.  I need to gain a healthy fear of her, similar to the way a child both loves and fears a parent. (As Kathy would call this, I desire for Katie to completely snuff out any 'pocket of resistance' left in me. That to me is synonymous with 'being broken'.)

That does a pretty good job of summarizing what I was really looking for when we started our DD explorations, even if I might not have articulated quite that way at the time.  The line about needing to gain a healthy fear struck a particularly strong chord.
Is being "broken" or, to put in a slightly less threatening way, deeply surrendering yourself to your partner's will part of your relationship?  If it isn't yet, is that a goal for you or your partner?  If it is, how did it feel as it was happening?  How has the transition been?
Have a great week.

Dan

27 comments:

  1. Hello Dan! Susie here. I really dislike the term "broken". I don't want my husband broken, but rather "aware." I need him to be more aware of his actions and how they affect me and the others in our home. Yes, he is the center of my attention, but there are others here who need my attention just as much, and maybe even more, if only temporarily. He has gone from depressed to having a nasty "me, me" attitude. I felt so angry today, but I don't believe in discipline when I'm angry. The worst part about all this is that I don't have the words to explain what I'm feeling, or why I'm feeling this way. He just needs an attitude adjustment. Not broken, not fear. I feel that many times men are unaware of their attitude towards their wives. I just don't feel I should have to "beat sense" into him. And so begins another frustrating weekend.

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    1. HI Susie. Sorry to hear the weekend is off to a bad start. I understand, and anticipated when I did the above post, that many might have a problem with the term "broken." I also use "surrender," though I think that some men who crave it would say that the act of being broken is the gateway to the kind of deep and meaningful surrender they want and need. I don't know how to better describe it. Men go through life being told to "take it like a man," "man up," have a "stiff upper lip" and all that. And, as for yielding to someone else's authority . . . not without a fight. You live like that for 40 years, and there is just a huge resistance to living under someone else's direction. Yet, we want it. And, we want to be able to have that cathartic release where all those engrained resistances come crumbling down. It's that final act of letting go, so we can go on and submit to our spouse's dominance. And, yes, I understand I'm Hers' desire to feel at least a little twinge of fear or anxiety, because part of the desire is to be MADE to submit.

      Now, I'm talking largely about men like to for whom yielding to authority is not natural and who are naturally aggressive and controlling, i.e. those for whom submission really is not easy. I'm sure for some men it is easy, but for many of us it isn't.

      So, I'm not sure that "broken" is the right word, but I definitely think that "breaking down," as in a powerful catharsis or feeling of really profound submission and letting go is part of what some of us want and need. Now, whether that is what the dominant women--or dominant women in training--in our lives want may or may not be another matter. I think mine is increasingly comfortable with the idea that I really want to break down sobbing as result of her discipline. But, it hasn't happened and neither of us know whether it ever will.

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    2. I feel that something like that takes time.

      I'm not sure if or when the desired results will come with my husband, but I do know that patience is a necessity in this case. Giving in and crying isn't easy. To make one's self vulnerable to another takes a certain type of courage. Desire isn't enough, but it's a stepping stone. You just might laugh well before the tears come.

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    3. Anonymous, absolutely wonderful comment! It's good on so many levels. Making oneself vulnerable is an incredibly courageous act, and that I think is the impediment between me and crying. I just can't get to the point of making myself quite that vulnerable. And, I think you're right in a very Zen sort of way that laughter might precede tears.

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    4. That above comment was me also Dan. It's essentially how I feel about tears and spankings when it comes to men.

      Susie

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    5. Susie again. I just wanted to share a few things about my week. It seems that I was the one who needed to be 'broken', or perhaps he needed to see me at my breaking point. I get the feeling that our next disciplinary session will get my husband closer to where he needs to be. I have high hopes that he will open himself to that awareness he needs. I'll check back in a few days and let you know how it goes.

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    6. It seems household changes have gotten in the way of discipline. The "good" thing is that we're talking, the "bad" thing is that because of the changes, I've not been able to discipline him as I see fit. Who knew a new puppy would be so much work?

      Susie

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  2. Hey...
    Merry does not like the word "broken" nor do I.
    Surrendering to her will IS a goal in this relationship.
    We are ...quite a distance from that goal.
    I remain (her words forthcoming...) stubborn and self-willed.
    Many times she says...something... might be the slightest thing...and it's all I can do to NOT grab my keys, and walk out the door, go to my car and.....
    Indeed, this is a toughie.

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    1. I suspect it may be harder for you to get to that point of surrender than for some of us, because you actually like the physical punishment. It would seem to me to be a lot harder to surrender to a dominant woman if one of the tools they often use, corporal punishment, is something you actually enjoy.

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  3. I also agree that "broken" isnt the correct word. I do understand what you meant by that however.
    You are having those walls that keep you from the submission that you so crave, chipped away at.
    Accept it. Breathe and go to where you need to be. IT IS WHERE YOU NEED TO BE.

    a male who had found that place

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    1. Exactly! Glad you've found that place craved by so many!

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  4. Hi Dan, First time posting on here and as the writer of the quotes you posted, I too would now say that 'broken' is not the proper term that I wanted to convey. Yes I want to know that I have no choice but to yield to her will. For example today I asked Katie if she'd look through her clothes and pull some out that we could give to Goodwill - as a way to clear out closet space. She selected one pair of jeans and said, "Here, get rid of these. Now I'm going downstairs." In my frustration I threw them back in the closet. She pissed me off. I came down and she asked where the jeans were and I told her I left them upstairs. She asked why I didn't put them in the Goodwill pile and I said I'd do it later. In truth I pouted because she didn't do what I wanted - which was to select several items to give to charity. Now I'f feeling guilty and know I need to admit my wrong and apologize but in my heart I know that my initial actions came about because I have not surrendered my will to hers. I still have expectations that she live up to my standards rather than me conforming to hers. Make sense? So glad I found your blog.

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    1. Welcome! Glad you found it and that I found yours. The word "broken" certainly seems to strike a negative chord in folks. Though, not as much with me. To me, it's like Marine Corps training that sets out to break a recruit and then build them back up. Or, the process in one of my favorite sports movies, Hoosiers, in which the basketball coach sets about to break the individual wills of his rebellious high school players, so he can build them into a better, more disciplined, more effective team. That's the sense in which I think of the word "breaking," i.e. breaking the will or the ego, not the person. "Surrender" seems to be a term that people accept more readily than "breaking," yet I don't see much difference between the two, except that the former may connote a degree of voluntary acceptance, while the latter perhaps entails having it imposed upon you. But, actively imposing her will is part of what some men want when entering into these relationships. Though, I hesitate when I use the phrase "these relationships," as there is clealry a spectrum of motivations at play. For some, it is craving spanking for its own sake. For some, discipline and consequences. For others, being dominated. For others, service. And lots of combinations of these and others.

      On a more practical note, I very much sympathize with you on the issue of freeing up space and getting rid of infrequently used clothes and other clutter. My own wife borders on being a hoarder, and her junk really does clutter our house. And, honestly, I think it is OK for me to get pissed off when her unwillingness to throw anything out or give anything away leaves the house is a state of perpetual clutter and mess. She isn't the only one who has to live here, and while we are moving to more of an FLR marriage, I don't see that as a blank check for her to always do whatever she wants no matter how dysfunctional and me having not getting to have an opinion on it. This is a topic that's probably worth exploring. A few posts ago I asked whether readers perceived any downside to their FLR or DD relationships, and while this one didn't come up, it is certainly a candidate: Does a DD or FLR relationship potentially have a downside for both the dominant party and those living under their authority, if it encourages a sense that the dominant party doesn't have to work on their own behavior and correct it where necessary? I know there are some variations on the Spenser Spanking Plan in which either party can be disciplined for breaking an agreed-upon rule. I don't personally have an interest in exploring that, but it would have the benefit of not allowing one party entirely off the hook.

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  5. Hi Dan,

    Another great talking point. I’m not sure the being ‘broken’ by Mistress is the right term but I do think there is a vital element of surrender involved.

    Like you, I’ve experienced first hand the gradual ‘stepping up’ of discipline levels in our relationship, both psychologically and physically – though as I’ve said before it does tend to ebb and flow.

    What I do know is that when Mistress is exercising the full power of her dominant persona some of the corporal punishment she delivers has me whimpering like a child and almost begging for it to stop. I’ve not cried, as such, but I’ve been close to tears. It used to happen occasionally, but now it’s virtually every time the cane is used.

    At the times when our FLR is in full flow, I experience the feelings you describe of almost being scared to step out of line. You have to be on your toes all the time and there’s a feeling of being unsettled because it’s hard to accept DD 24/7. But having said that, I also find it tremendously satisfying to serve Mistress – and intoxicating to see her exploiting her power.

    For me the feeling of surrender comes when I know I’ve done wrong and I’m told I’m going to be punished. And knowing just how intense the punishment will be, still willingly, fetch the fiercest cane we possess and willingly bend over to accept the punishment. I’m happy the suffer the correction because I know that I deserve it and that Mistress really enjoys that power over me.

    I think we’ve come a long way but we’re still a some way from achieving a 100% FLR, mainly thanks to my failings - but I think both of us would love to live the lifestyle 24/7 and I believe that’s the goal we’re working towards. I’ll let you know how the transition is!

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  6. In my marriage, surrendering myself to my wife’s will is an ongoing and increasingly developing part of our DD marriage. As I give more of myself to following her lead and her direction, she as well has increased her dominance and control. It seems for me at least that the stronger she leads the more apt I am at complying and anticipating her needs. When she was inconsistent with punishing me for my mistakes and/or breaking her rules – I was less focused on staying on track. Once she stepped up her dominance and enforced much stricter discipline – that was when I responded by giving much more of myself to her control.

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    1. It does seem to be a feedback loop. You give yourself more to following her lead, she steps up the dominance, you complying even more.

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  7. Hi Dan, another great topic this week. First let me say that our marriage is closer to the DD model than an all-encompassing FLR type. My wife is mostly 'vanilla,' to borrow a term from the BDSM community, but she has accommodated my desire to be spanked as it evolved from a principally sexual appetite (which didn't appeal to her) to its current focus on discipline and attitude improvement. That's not to say I haven't been 'broken' by her, though. For us it's more of a case-by-case basis rather than an over riding relationship model. Let me explain.

    Decades ago I was obsessed with being my own boss, and got a job in the insurance business. Trouble was, I was a notoriously poor self-manager, and it caused me to flounder in the job such that we barely scraped by. Alice tried and tried to convince me to get out and do something I was better suited for, but for years I stubbornly clung to false hope; my pride wouldn't let me give up. The situation got so bad it threatened the viability of our marriage. Ultimately the prospect of three fatherless children proved too much for me, and I 'broke down.' It was incredibly emotional, and it had absolutely nothing to do with FLR or DD or any other acronyms. But within a few months we had righted the career ship, and I was on a path to doing work that matched up better with my skills and temperament.

    Couples should absolutely pursue what makes sense for their own situation. For us, it's been kind of like the Stephen Covey model in his 7 Habits book. After achieving a level of personal independence, we're moving toward the greater possibilities that come with enlightened interdependence. We have individual strengths and weaknesses, and the trick is blending them so they compliment one another, rather than clash.

    It's fascinating to learn about the broad spectrum of relationship dynamics, and when your partner is willing, to try them out. If you communicate openly and sincerely, it'll be obvious what works, and what needs adjustment.

    Roger

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    1. Roger, thanks for the comment. While our relationship is moving a bit closer to an ongoing FLR model, it isn't anywhere close to there yet. Like yours, it is closer to an "as needed" DD.

      It's interesting the extent to which what we "want" and what we are suited for can be in complete misalignment. So much baggage and so may expectations that color our view of who we are and who we should be. It's great that you figured it out before it was too late. I have someone very important in my life who has spent the better part of 60 years not really finding the match between who he thinks he wants to be and what life offers up to him. Actually, I have two people in my life who fit that profile, and it's just sad. So, I'm glad you righted the ship. And, by the way, I love the & Habits. It had a profound impact on my life and career years ago and is still hands-down one of the Top 5 modern books on increasing personal performance in a meaningful way.

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  8. I'm glad the 'broken' terminology has been dispensed with since Rosa has specifically used that exact word to convey what she absolutely does not want to do with me. What she does want and now fully expects, is obedience......plain and simple. And her expectation is justified by her own sense of confidence in knowing exactly what she feels necessary to shape me into a 'better me' not a 'broken me'. What sometimes frightens me is the realization that she is right. Not merely entitled by virtue of her mutually agreed upon role, but honestly and truly right about most if not all things regarding my behavior. As such, it is embarrassing and even a bit daunting to be so transparent to someone who readily accepts a position of authority. She simply knows me too well for me to get away with anything, and way too secure in her position to be anything less than lovingly strict when she catches me.

    I may have written before about a serious and multi-faceted punishment I received from her a while back. One of the things she had me do was write "I promise to obey Rosa promptly at all times." 1000 times while in a very uncomfortable state. At first I took to the task with an attitude of 'getting through it'......but eventually and let me tell you writing something 1000 times does not take 5 minutes, I was struck by the true spirit of what I was writing. I realized: "holy crap! she's really serious, and I'm really and truly IN this!" It was a wonderful and terrible revelation, and nothing has been the same since. Any self-delusion that this is just a kinky game is gone.

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    1. Your epiphany of "holy crap! she's really serious, and I'm really and truly IN this!" comes pretty damn close to what I am getting at with how the world changed a bit with our session a few weeks ago.

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    2. It is amazing what these dominant ladies are capable of. In almost every aspect of our regular, practical relationship I feel like an adult partner, but when it comes to domestic behavior, I feel very much like the impetuous child of a loving but strict mother. This type of maternal figure has no wish to break their child but to mold that child into a responsible adult for their own good, and the overall good of the household. She has no doubt of her right and responsibility to be the unquestioned authority in the home. She'll take no back-talk. She expects to be obeyed, but when disobeyed, she also has no guilt in administering a punishment that teaches a lesson while releasing her own frustration and annoyance. A strict mother never seemed too concerned over the stingy soreness of a deserving bottom. And Rosa is no different.

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    3. KD

      I think you have summed it all up by saying a strict momther never seemed too concerned over the stingy soreness of a deserving bottom. BRAVO" !

      thanks

      har

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  9. I understand why you chose the word 'broken', and I think it's appropriate. So far it seems to be taken as referring to someone's spirit being broken in an enduring kind of way. Well that sounds like trauma, and anyone sane doesn't want that in their relationship.

    But theirs also the sense of two people getting into a battle of wills, meaning the subordinate is in someway refusing to recognize their partner's authority, and that resulting in a spanking. If and when they can be spanked into submission, especially if it is accompanied with a loss of composure, that forceful change of attitude matches up well with 'broken'. We identify very strongly with our moods and attitudes, and a spanking that ends in the indignity of sobbing and promises to do as told is a clear affirmation of one person's dominance and another's defeat. Their will to act as they please, present themselves (maintain their composure) as they please, has been broken.

    Jake

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  10. Jake, well said. "Loss of composure" may a gentler way of expressing the "broken" concept I was getting at. The indignity of sobbing would, indeed, be an acknowledgement of defeat.

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  11. so well said Jake

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  12. I feel the word broken is well taken as it is meant to be used to break bad habits as well as other things. I wish my wife would step up her process as well. I have told her on several occasions that it is hard to stay focused and do this 24/7 but after a few months things would fall in line. I am very head strong and run my own business and I need the relief of surrendering to someone and feel submissive to someone else. I had given her Ingrid Bellemares book and she said that it finally made sense about what I wanted but she still hasn't implemented it. Even if she would just do some of it and be consistent I feel things would change. Just putting it out there. Steve

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