Saturday, July 30, 2016

The Forum - Vol. 168 - There are Spankings, and There are Spankings

When pain is over, the remembrance of it often becomes a pleasure. -- Jane Austen

Hello all. Welcome back to The Forum - Disciplined Husbands & Disciplinary Wives.  Our weekly gathering of men and women in or wanting to be in Domestic Discipline or Female Led Relationships.  I hope you all had a great week.

I've learned over the course of the last three years that some topics work, and some don't.  We can probably write last week's off as one that seemed to put everyone to sleep. Or, maybe it's just the lazy heat of summer sapping everyone of their interest? Or maybe a combination of both.  Any how . . .

We finished up another poll last week.  This one focused on the extent to which people mix erotic and disciplinary spankings.  We got 102 responses, which broke down as follows:

Discipline only
            31 (30%)
Erotic or play only
            17 (16%)
            54 (52%)

"Both" won by a pretty big margin, though "Discipline Only" was the practice for 1/3 of our respondents.  I will take this as another data point showing that people come to Domestic Discipline for different reasons.  Some are into spanking independent of DD, while others seem to be using it as a tool and only as a tool.  Or, maybe for them the disciplinary spanking does have some appeal in and of itself but that appeal doesn't carry over to erotic spankings?

We are in the "discipline only" camp.  I'm not sure that erotic spankings would work for us.  In fact, when we first started DD, we made the conscious decision that spankings had to be hard and difficult to take, because she was adamant that she did not want them to function as any sort of reward for bad behavior. But, in truth, that isn't really the reason we don't do it.  At least for me, I just don't have any real attraction to erotic spankings.  Even looking at spanking content on the internet, if it doesn't have a strong disciplinary or punishment component, it does little or nothing for me.  That's why although I recognize that for many a spanking fetish underlies the interest in domestic discipline, I'm not one of them.

How about you?  Do you mix erotic and disciplinary spankings?  Do you make sure that the former doesn't detract from the effectiveness of the latter?

I hope you have a good week.  As always, if you are new to this Forum, please stop by the Guestbook (see tab above) and tell us a little about yourself.


Saturday, July 23, 2016

The Forum - Vol. 167 - Freedom in Submission

"A submissive gives up control for freedom.  A Dominant gives up freedom for control. - Unknown

Hi all. Welcome back to the Forum - Disciplined Husbands & Disciplinary Wives.  I hope you had a great week. 

It was a good discussion last week, though I seem to be in a distinct minority in questioning whether wider acceptance of TTWD might have some downsides.  But, that's OK.  As shown again below, there are some things involved in this lifestyle where I am in the minority, but it's a wide world.

A few weeks ago, I saw the quote above on another blog.  The author of that blog, Domina Jen, said it is a well-known teaching in the BDSM or D/s community.  I'll take her word on that, as it's a community I haven't personally frequented except to the extent it includes our interactions on this blog.  In two short sentences, it seemed to sum up for me what I get out of Domestic Discipline, or at least what I am looking for out of it.  We have had a lot of discussions on this blog about the extent to which people who participate here are spanking fetishists for whom DD is an extra element added on top of the spanking, or whether the underlying driver is the need to give up control while spanking is more of a tool to get there or part of the process for giving in.  For me personally, it is pretty clearly the latter.  We don't do erotic spankings, and spanking was never "a thing" for me until I stumbled on the concept of domestic disciple.

Since then, I have not been able to do a particularly good job in articulating how it is that there is a sense of freedom in handing over control to someone else.  At surface level, it should be just the opposite and, yet, it's not.  At least for me.  While part of me does fight having boundaries imposed on me, there also is a palpable sense or relief and something like a sense of increased freedom when she really takes over.

Conversely, for the wives who assume control, does that give you a sense of freedom, or is that something you give up?  Is it freeing to make the decisions without need to check with someone else?  It seems like it should, though I recognize that I just got through saying it works the opposite for me.  Assuming that, as the quote indicates it comes along with a certain exchange between freedom and control--because you are now taking on additional responsibility and leadership--is that trade-off something you feel comfortable with?

I hope you all have a great week.  As always, if you are new to this Forum, please stop by the Guestbook (see tab above) and tell us a little about yourself (anonymously is fine if that's your preference).

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Vol. 166 - Should We Remain Odd

“If it is the dirty element that gives pleasure to the act of lust, then the dirtier it is, the more pleasurable it is bound to be.”― Marquis de Sade, The 120 Days of Sodom

 Hi all.  Welcome back to The Forum: Disciplined Husbands & Disciplinary Wives.  Our weekly gathering of men and women participating or interested in Domestic Discipline and/or Female Led Relationships.  I hope you all had a great week.

Last week's topic was about one specific variant of the theme of "openness," namely how open people would be sharing their DD lifestyle with their adult kids.  It was a good conversation and, as I anticipated, there were widely varying views.  It also ranged into some related areas, such as vindictive spouses letting out the secret during divorce proceedings (a risky move, given that using a paddle in DD fashion could be an assault under the laws in some states -- hint hint to anyone who might think of engaging in such a despicable breach of trust) and, on the other end of the trust spectrum, Peter overcoming his embarrassment to trust a friend in need with the secret to his marital success.

This week's topic is somewhat related.   A few weeks ago, Alan observed that it would be good if sometime in the future society was comfortable with a woman being openly in charge and her man being openly submissive.  Men are certainly doing their part to hasten that day, with our behavior seemingly going from bad to worse.  The plain fact is, the statistics are clear that women are increasingly beating our asses in the race of life, pun very much intended.  Women are being admitted to college in greater numbers than men.  They are graduating from professional programs in rates greater than men.  Just a generation ago, women had virtually no presence in American law schools, but they now graduate in numbers greater than men. Books are even being written about the bad track men are on.  A fascinating one to add to your summer reading list is The End of Men: And the Rise of Women by Hanna Rosin.  It doesn't leave much doubt about why women seem to be increasingly comfortable saying, "My house, my rules."

Now, all of that is probably music to the ears of the crowd who reads this blog.  But, should it be?  Would a society that was more openly Female Dominated be a good thing?  And, to Alan's comment, what about openness in general about This Thing We Do?  Maybe surprisingly for a guy who writes a blog devoted to promoting DD and FLR relationships, I am pretty firmly on the fence about whether more openness would be a good thing.  On the one hand, tolerance of other lifestyles is almost always a good thing.  But, I'm not really talking about tolerance, so much as genuine acceptance and adoption of DD and FLR lifestyles.  The fact is, while the perceived need to keep these things private does inhibit us in publicly expressing our FLR bent, I kind of like the secret aspect of it.  Dictionary definitions of "kinky" include "relating to, having, or appealing to unconventional tastes especially in sex."  Well, who the hell wants to be conventional?   And if everyone starts doing it, then it is by definition, conventional.  For me, I am not sure that being in  this lifestyle would have quite the same appeal if everyone else was doing it and if it was fully accepted by everyone else out there in the vanilla world.

So, that is today's topic: Would more openness to and greater adoption of DD and FLR lifestyles by the wider society be a good thing? Is it something you want?  Or, is part of the attraction to DD and FLR that they are, in fact, not the norm and that there is something unconventional, and dare I say naughty and kinky about them? If the taboo were removed, would that necessarily be a good thing for you and your DD and FLR relationship?

Have a great week!  As always, if you are new to our group, please stop by the Guestbook (see tab above) and tell us a little something about yourself.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

The Forum - Vol. 165 - Through the Generations

"You’re used to difficult women. To struggle. Perhaps you like it when they give you a bad time. Every treasure is guarded by dragons. That’s how you can tell it’s valuable.… ” -- Saul Bellow

Hi all.  Welcome, or welcome back, to The Forum - Disciplined Husbands & Disciplinary Wives.  Our weekly gathering of men and women to talk about and promote adult domestic discipline and FLR relationships.

I hope you all had a great week.  It was another grueling one for me.  I could really use some time off right now, but there's just no end in sight for the foreseeable future.  Of course, if I wasn't busy, I would be whining even more about that. 

We have talked from time to time about how to work DD around the presence of kids in the household, and we've shared ideas about how to mete out well-deserved discipline without the kids overhearing.

But, what about once they are grown?  Is the DD or FLR side of your relationship something that should be kept from them once they are off on their own?

We are often reluctant to share this part of our life with anyone.  But, particularly if it is something that you think helped your own marriage, should you share that with your adult kids so they can also get the benefits of it?  Those benefits could potentially apply to either a daughter who needs to take charge of her own ill-behaved husband, or maybe you are a realist parent faced with the proposition that your darling son (or daughter) could themselves profit a bit from being on the receiving end of the marital paddle or hairbrush. 

There are probably going to be a wide range of opinions on this one.  I am pretty firmly on the fence, though tilting a bit more toward being selectively open about it.  Holly's posts always get me thinking about this, though it's been on my mind lately for a variety of reasons.

One of Holly's observations last week was that while her husband has grown as a result of domestic discipline, so has she.  Those opportunities for mutual growth are one reason I believe in TTWD, and why I see it as being at its best when used to balance out the extremes.  Domineering or out of control men get taken down a peg and taught some hard lessons.  On the other end of the paddle, a wife who may have once felt powerless or timid may develop into a strong and capable leader.

So, isn't that something we would want for our adult kids as they move out into the world and experience their own inevitable marital and personal challenges? Even if we thought it was something that needed to be kept private while they were growing up, do those same concerns still apply later in life?

As I said, my own attitudes on this have evolved a lot over time.  I once just sort of assumed this is a private activity and should be kept that way.  But, I also believe that domestic discipline and, increasingly, being the man in a Female Led Relationship, is a core part of who I am and what I want to become.  Yet, concerns that kids could overhear a spanking, or see her in full "boss" mode have  been the #1 impediment over time to us deepening and broadening this aspect of our relationship. 

A few weeks ago, I put at the top of the post a quote I saw a few weeks ago that really stuck with me for  some reason.  Here is an abbreviated version:

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. 

Isn't that kind of of what our DD and FLR wives do when they hide that part of themselves because of concerns it will make someone, including our progeny, uncomfortable?  And ironically, if DD or FLR has really helped our own marriages, are  we doing our adult kids a disfavor by not sharing it with them?
I hope you all have a great week. As always, if you are new to our Forum, please stop by the Guestbook (see tab above) and tell us a little about yourself and your DD and FLR relationship or aspirations.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

The Forum - Vol. 164 - Turning Points

 “I hate men who are afraid of women's strength.”― Anais Nin. 

Hi all.  Welcome, or welcome back, to The Forum - Disciplined Husbands & Disciplinary Wives.  Our weekly gathering to talk about and promote adult domestic discipline and FLR relationships. I hope you all had a great week and that those of you in the U.S. are off enjoying this long holiday weekend with friends and family. Have fun, and be safe.

Is it just me, or have we had some great discussions the last couple of weeks?  I'm sorry that I got around to responding to several of you only today.  It was a crazy week for me at work, really burning the candle at both ends.  While I didn't get around to responding to them right away, I do want to give a shout-out to J Girl and Willow, two members of our extended community who left  some great comments about how discipline and punishment work for them.  While their relationships are M/f oriented, it has been a great experience for me to get to know them a bit through their blogs and comments like those they left this week.  It's been interesting coming to understand their perspectives, as I started to see the common threads in these relationships and to realize that it isn't only hard-charging, intense men who feel the need to have boundaries imposed and who crave discipline for bad behavior.  It seems that many similarly intense women have those same needs, and it wasn't until recently that I understood that while our genders may be different, the personality traits involved in these relationships really cut across gender lines.  While I think I will always keep the primary M/f focus of this blog, if for no other reason than there aren't many blogs out there with that particular bent, I think it is great to get perspectives from all those who gravitate to these kinds of relationships.  If I can put my finger on one thing that has improved the quality of this blog over the last year, it is the extent to which it has gotten real participation from both genders and from people on both ends of the paddle.

Regarding the substance of last week's topic, I woke up this morning (the 4th, so I've updated this from the original post), with a thought of how to sum up why I don't find discipline as "payback" an offensive concept, while some clearly do.   If I could put it in the mouth of a Disciplinary Wife, it might go something like this: "When you act like a jerk or do bad things and get away with it, everyone but you pays for your misbehavior.  Everyone else suffers because you do bad things or shirk your obligations.  Since all real change comes from within, I can't necessarily make you change.  But, if I have the authority or sufficient will, I can make you pay a price when you don't, which is fair because otherwise everyone but you pays a price for your misdeeds, and what is fair about that?   I'm just making sure you pay part of the price you otherwise force on others."  Or, words to that effect.

A few weeks ago, we heard from Pat, a Disciplinary Wife who left this comment:

"Very early in our Dd relationship he behaved outrageously at a neighborhood party embarrassing me with his loud and tasteless " jokes" after I gave him several warnings. I excused us and took him outside where I told him he was going to be severely punished which I did when we got home. I wasn't sure yet he would submit but he did. After some " remorse time" I made him go back to the party where I assure you he didn't sit down the rest of the night. That night was probably when I made a serious commitment to DD. I have never had to do anything like that again.But he knows I would if he pushed me.

The underlined portion forms the basis for today's topic:  Various experiences brought us to our DD, FLR and D/s relationships, but was there a particular moment when you thought, "Wow.  This is real."  Or, a particular event or moment when your commitment to it solidified, or where it really took on the character it has today? Tell us all about it.  It was, by the way, pointed out to me that this one is a little repetitive. Probably.  It's the holiday weekend after a long week.  My inspiration was running low.

I also neglected to open up for discussion the latest poll results.  This one focused on how long people have been in their DD relationships:

Not in one
            10 (11%)
A year or less
            18 (20%)
1 - 5 years
            21 (24%)
5 - 10 years
            13 (15%)
10 or more years
            24 (27%)

Now, having opened up the point for discussion, I'm not sure what to say about it.  That was how I felt when I posted it, by the way.  I didn't see it as anything very revealing; just wanted to get a little more insight into our community.  The distribution of responses is pretty even, to the point that if any differences are statistically significant, it's probably because the sample size was so small (86 votes).  Still, it is somewhat heartening that the highest number of votes was from people who have been in these relationships for 10 years or more.  I have also posted another poll, focusing on the extent to which people mix erotic and disciplinary spankings.

If you have a moment, you might want to check out a blog called:  The current post, involving needle play, is very BDSM and not my thing.  But, to each his own.  She has some pretty interesting posts. I especially liked this one, from a post called Punishment in the day to day in which she quotes another blogger:
Anyone who’s suffered through a lengthy drive in silence can attest to the fact that punishments exist in conventional relationships. However, behavior is coded in faux-egalitarianism and therefore erratic and often arbitrary. In contrast, those living in a lifestyle BDSM relationship usually have an explicit binary of power and specific rules which, if broken, lead to a submissive being punished. Punishment is not an exclusively D/s thing.  Regulated punishment is an exclusively D/s thing.
Well said.

As always, if this is your first time to The Forum, please consider stopping by our Guestbook (tab above) and tell us a little about yourself.

I hope you all have a great holiday, enjoy each other, and be safe.