Thursday, December 16, 2021

The Club - Meeting 391 - Linguistic Masturbation and Consent/Non-Consent

We are not won by arguments that we can analyse but by tone and temper, by the manner which is the man himself. - Samuel Butler

Hello all.  Welcome back to the Disciplinary Couples Club.  Our (usually though not always) weekly gathering of men and women who are in, or would like to be in, Domestic Discipline relationships.

 

I hope you all had a great week.  Mine has been pretty relaxed, to a large extent because for the first time in recent history, I finished almost all my Christmas shopping a good two weeks ahead of time and even have most of my wrapping done.  While a wrapping party such as the one below would have been a lot of fun, I did it all myself (thankfully, I have nice relatives who will undoubtedly forgive my sometimes laughably inept effort; hopefully, it is the thought that counts), while binge watching various streaming series on Netflix and HBO.  Is it just me, or is there a huge amount of great content out there right now.  I’m pretty sure I have never watched as much TV in my life as I have in the last couple of months, and I really don’t regret a minute of it.

 

Ironically, while I am as prepared for Christmas as I’ve ever been by this point in the season, the weather is really not cooperating when it comes to imbuing me with the Christmas spirit.  We are in the middle of a drought and haven’t seen measurable snow in a very, very long time.  It’s kind of pissing me off.  Last year, Covid ruined the social aspects of Christmas.  This year, global warming is ruining much of the aesthetic and atmospheric elements I’m used to.  I guess none of this in our near future . . .


I originally thought I might not post this week, as I wasn’t feeling inspired, but then I couldn’t help mulling some of the responses to a post by Hermione over at https://hermionesheart.blogspot.com/ regarding consent or, more specifically, non-consent.  The way she phrased her topic was:

 

While it’s all consensual, some of us like to pretend that spanking or being spanked is not. Is that the case for you? If so, how do you work this out?

 

Language is a funny thing, and context is very often critical.  I had an acting class back in college, and we were required to engage in improv skits, which I found excruciating.  Improv can work well with fluid, flexible actors who are willing and able to take conversational cues.  In fact, the first rule of improv is to always begin by agreeing with the proposition your partner has offered, extending and going off on close tangents from there.  Things can break down in a serious way if one partner simply refuses to engage with the initial proposition, either denying the initial proposed setting or insisting on a one-sided flow.  Tina Fey offers this example: “So if we’re improvising and I say, “Freeze, I have a gun,” and you say, “That’s not a gun. It’s your finger. You’re pointing your finger at me,” our improvised scene has ground to a halt.”

 

Workable (and enjoyable) conversations are kind of like that.  They work well if there is a natural give and take, which often requires assuming that each person kind of knows the gist of what the other person is talking about.  Things can break down very quickly if there isn’t some baseline acceptance of what is being talked about or if one conversational partner insists on an overly literal or idiosyncratic use of terms that are important to the conversation. Or, if conversing with them requires mutually agreeing, in excruciating detail, to the precise meaning of every term under discussion.   

 

An example: If someone asks me what I had for dinner last night and I say, “I went to this great Mexican restaurant. The food was really good,” nine times out of ten the other will respond with something that helps the conversation flow, like: “That’s great.  Where was it? Do they have good margs?”  But, I have this one friend who is from Mexico City.  God forbid the subject of Mexican food comes up around him, because the conversation always seems to go something like this:

 

Him: What did you have do for dinner last night? 

Me: I had Mexican.  It was really good.

Him:  “Oh, did you? Really? Well, as you know I am from Mexico, and most of what you Americans call Mexican isn’t Mexican at all. You tell me what you had, then I’ll tell you whether what you had was Mexican.”

 

Now, the net result is this guy finds himself uninvited anytime a crowd from work decides to go Mexican for lunch.  It’s just too fucking difficult dealing with him on that particular issue, so on Mexican food days he ends up eating alone.

There also are times that people are using the same words but with slightly different, but related, meanings.  There’s even a word for it – polysemy. One example would be the word “man,” which could mean (from Wikipedia):

 

  • The human species (i.e., man vs. other organisms) 
  • Males of the human species (i.e., man vs. woman 
  • Adult males of the human species (i.e., man vs. boy)

 

There’s a related concept called “predicate transfer,” which Wikipedia discusses thusly: 

Another clarification of polysemy is the idea of predicate transfer[18]—the reassignment of a property to an object that would not otherwise inherently have that property. Thus, the expression "I am parked out back" conveys the meaning of "parked" from "car" to the property of "I possess a car." This avoids incorrect polysemous interpretations of "parked": that "people can be parked", or that "I am pretending to be a car", or that "I am something that can be parked". This is supported by the morphology: "We are parked out back" does not mean that there are multiple cars; rather, that there are multiple passengers (having the property of being in possession of a car).

 

Now, in the real world we avoid confusion when using such terms based on people taking cues from the context of the conversation. Further, they don’t violate the context by insisting that their preferred, particular use of a word or phrase is the one and only way to possibly use it even if it isn't how people are likely using it in the actual context of the conversation.  Thus, if I make a general point about "man" as a species and as a whole, it’s going to work fine unless the person I’m talking to insists that I’m being sexist for using the word man to include both males and females or that he or she can’t understand what I’m saying at all unless I first separate the two out and clarify that I am talking about either man as males or, rather, to man in the generic sense. And, the conversation is going to get tedious very quickly if I tell him "I am parked in back" and he keeps insisting that my car may be parked in back but I am right here in front of him and am "pretending" if I think otherwise.

 

What’s any of that have to do with Hermione’s post?  Well, I think the way it was reacted to depended a lot on (a) one’s interpretation of the word “pretend” and how closely that interpretation matched Hermione’s intention in using it, and (b) how literal and exhaustive one insists one’s own definition of “non-consent” must be in order for there to be an intelligent conversation about its possible uses, boundaries and complications.

 

Regarding the former, “pretend” could be used benignly or pejoratively.  In the benign or positive sense, it could entail fantasy, imagination and role play.  For people who are into spanking as a fun, recreational activity, or who use it as “funishment,” asking to what extent you like to pretend that it is non-consensual is benign and seems to be the equivalent of asking to what extent that particular playful element is incorporated into your overall spanking play. That's how I assume Hermione meant it, particularly since her blog is devoted to non-disciplinary, fully consensual spanking play.

 

But, someone could also use "pretend" in a more pejorative sense, equating it with self-deception or living in denial, as in: “Any of you who say your relationship is based on ‘consensual’ non-consent are just pretending or fooling yourself because consent is an absolute, up or down, binary thing and you can always consent on some level.”  Used in that way, "pretend" sounds more like an attack.

 

Now, Hermione has always stated that her blog is about “fun” spankings, even if they may often hurt quite a bit, in all their various forms.  She’s generally not talking about real disciplinary spankings and, when she has had a topic regarding discipline, she’s called it out as such.  She's also a great host who never deliberately excludes any spanking enthusiast or sets out to offend anyone (other than perhaps with her periodic pictures of Walmart shoppers). So, I have no doubt that when she phrased her topic in terms of “pretending,” it was in the context of her usual emphasis on fun spankings that include all sorts of fun elements, including role play or other  imaginative situations in which one or both parties pretend a given spanking wasn’t consensual, either to each other or just in their own minds. Nothing pejorative about it, and I don't think most of it took it any other way. 

 

But, I think there were a couple of comments and further postings that seemed to object to, or ridicule, the concept of wanting something to feel non-consensual and, to the extent possible, to have non-consensual or imposed attributes.  

 

Those who talk about consensual non-consent in the DD context are, I believe, using that concept in a very different context than I think Hermione was using in talking about "pretending" not to consent.  She was talking about fantasy in the context of a relationship in which spanking is an erotic form of play. Those in DD who say their goal is something like "consensual non-consent" or imposed discipline, however, aren’t pretending that there is literal non-consent. 

 

Rather, I think they are talking about genuinely wishing their dynamic could be, to one degree or another, imposed without their consent to the extent practical.  In some ways, I think they are being very genuine and authentic about the motivations underlying their dynamic. They candidly admit what it is they want and then try to adapt their reality to fit that desire, but doing so within the confines of the objective reality of an adult relationship.  (In fact, in eight years of doing this blog, I can think of only one time in which someone seemed to be suggesting that there really was some element of [financial and emotional] force taking place, and I strongly advised them that they needed to seek professional help.)

 

This is where my examples about how improv, and ordinary conversation, fit in. Within the context of the conversations among people practicing DD, I think I generally know what people mean by consensual non-consent or by consenting to the whole relationship but agreeing not to withdraw consent to particular spankings. I also totally get the desire to have discipline imposed, even if there is always some practical ability to resist or refuse. I don't need them to spell out all those qualifiers and implicit presumptions and, in fact, the conversation would get real annoying real quick if they had to do so in order for us to have the conversation at all.  It would look something like:


“I would really like to experience discipline that is non-consensual. By which I mean, it is imposed.  I don’t have to agree to it every time and, in fact, it’s closest to what I want when it is something I really don’t want and would actually really like get out of.  By which I mean, that’s the way it was when I was a kid, and I’d like to experience that again. To be sure, I know that I can’t really do that, because I’m full grown now and could physically resist in a way I couldn’t as a kid.  Yes, I am aware that because I am bigger and stronger than her, on some level I always have the literal ability to object and say no, but to the extent practicable I’m going to try not to that, because it would undermine the dynamic we’d agree to. In fact, she might give up on the dynamic entirely. While I recognize that reality, I don’t really like it and it’s frustrating, but that doesn't mean I'm pretending it doesn't exist.  The best I can come up with is to consent once and then there would be no option of resisting. Yes, I am aware that real life doesn’t work that way, so the best I can do is to agree in advance not to object and do my best to actually keep my work on that.  In our DD community, we refer to that as “consensual non-consent.” 

 

Blah, blah, blah.  Yes, we could laboriously add all that context and qualification, but what the hell would be the point? In this community and context, we all mostly know what someone means when they say they consent to the nature of the spanking relationships but would very much like the spankings to be non-consensual while recognizing, implicitly, the practical real world limitations. Thankfully, there is a form of linguistic common ground that unites those of us in this context that we all recognize, and it works just fine, right up until someone insists on their single, unitary, exclusive, ultra-specific definition.


  

 

Yes, in the real world, it simply isn’t possible to have an irrevocable contract. Although that concept very much exists in the law, what it really means isn’t that there is some force that prevents a party from walking away under any circumstance but, rather, that there will be very unpalatable consequences if the party attempts to revoke and refuses to perform as agreed.  They can always choose not to perform, but the other party can sue them. Then, the court might order them to perform and, if they don’t, they could be held in contempt of court and sent to jail.  It's not that the party can't renege, but rather that there will be hell to pay if they do.  Hell, even in the non-real world it's hard to think of a promise that literally cannot be revoked.  One might use the example of the "unbreakable vow" from Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.  But, it wasn't that the unbreakable vow literally could not be broken.Rather, if the vow maker breaks his word, he’ll die. It's about consequences, not literal lack of the ability to choose not to live up to your word. In the real adult world, that's probably about as far as we can go with non-consent.

  

I think we all agree that being physically overpowered and forced to submit is not what anyone means by non-consent in the DD context, and I don't think that needs to be spelled out in excruciating detail every time this subject of consensual non-consent or "pre-consent" comes up.  Some may take things so far as to fantasize about actual coercion, but that probably is an outlier and, whether it is or not, it doesn't make people's attempts to engineer something that feels more imposed some kind of pretense or self-delusion. 

 I do think that some genuinely wish that the disciplinary relationship they have agreed to can be as free from ongoing, tacit consent as possible. I don't think it's an accident that many DD stories, such as many of those on the DWC website, involve the wife initiating the DD relationship with getting any sort of tacit approval from the husband.  In the real world, the best one so inclined can probably do is to approximate truly imposed discipline, but that isn't "pretending." Rather, it is living with what you can get and bending your desires to reality.

 

  

Thankfully, most conversations we have around this stuff are like what happened with respect to most of the comments in response to Hermione’s blog topic.  A couple of us who were in DD dynamics talked about our spin on the issue within our particular dynamic, with neither taking any apparent offense at, or reading anything pejorative into, the particular phrasing she used in describing her topic, including use of the word “pretend.” We got that she was phrasing things as most would within her dynamic (fun or non-disciplinary spanking) and that if we were responding in some idiosyncratic or overly literal way, it was really on us to call that out.   

 

Thankfully, few conversations around this stuff end up with situations like my exchanges with my Mexican friend in which I can’t talk to him about the quality of a particular Mexican food experience unless and until he first insists on defining for me how I am allowed to use the term “Mexican food.” Thankfully, all the other patrons and most potential patrons of that particular category of restaurants know what I’m talking about and we can communicate meaningfully about it.

 

I don’t have any particular topic question in mind for this, so react or not as you please.  I recognize that the whole post probably feels a lot like linguistic masturbation.  Frankly, it probably is, but I was in that kind of mood, probably from streaming too much Sex Education on Netflix, which has loads of real masturbation, among other activities.  If you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend it.  I don’t rank it quite as high as Ted Lasso, but it’s in the same “feel good” space, and I’m trying to consume more of that and less dark and depressing moody stuff. Seems like the right time of year for “peace on earth, good will to men,” with “men” meaning used in the non-gender specific sense of all humankind.  Snow or no snow.


58 comments:

  1. The consensual –non-consensual issue has been around forever and lately it seems to be trending again. I find the various views interesting and often stimulating. But I think the psychological dimension of consent needs to be considered more than it is – and within that theme these should be a clear distinction made between disciplinary spanking in a DD relationship and all the other flavors of adult spanking including BDSM. I believe the psychology of consensual –nonconsensual notions differ considerably between those two categories.
    One frequent, possibly prevalent, view I have encountered is that consent-non-consent is ultimately an elaborate game, a pretense in the service of a fantasy. And the popularity of the “safe word” proves that. As long as you can step a punishment with a safe word or simply walking away from it –it’s not a real punishment.
    I agree with all that if safe words are used and the psychological factors of submission to authority and discipline are ignored or minimized. I expect most BDSM encounters and all casual spanking measures up to those conditions very well. I will even go further and say I believe spanking outside of disciplinary spanking within a DD relationship should operate within that kind of consensual non consent framework. Indeed even in a relationship which evolves into DD, it portably starts out based on a pretend fantasy of non-consent. Both of mine went through this phase,
    But I argue that consent –non consent operates differently in a mature DD relationship. I have not only consented to disciplinary spanking but originally initiated them in both relationships and once started encouraged and supported them consistently not least by explaining the psychological triggers that induces me to obey and accept her authority. So I explained to her all those triggers which I have enumerated before and certainly are not unique to me – things like the symbol of brush or paddle in her hands, assertively taking down my pants, the scolding, physically controlling my bum and much more. These can put me in a zone where I really don’t have the psychological will to refuse or exist a spanking she is determined to deliver.

    But do I consent to these spankings when she administers one? Yes, sometimes for a variety of reasons. But many maybe a majority I do not consent when it is impending or happening. I don’t want it and will do almost anything to avoid it. But that short term non consent is not only what makes disciplinary spanking work – but as soon as it’s over or worst case next day I enthusiastically consent to what has happened and want it to continue when needed in out relationship. And I know I need her to be assertive and aggressive to make it happen. But at the impending moment I was not consenting and felt I could not stop it. Part of that feeling is the desire to obey her which has grown over time, part the powerful psychological triggers she uses and part my strong need for female authority. But this is not the consensual non consent of “safe words” or walking away. Her control is real and only part of it can be said to be consensual. But I would not have it any other way.
    Alan

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    1. Thanks, Alan. BTW, this didn't post immediately because your comment was swept up in the spam filter.

      I thought a little bit about the safeword issue while writing this post. Like pretty much everything in this world of power exchanges we're all a part of, there is a spectrum, and giving up control is a matter of degree. It seems to me the safeword is an indication--not definitive, but an indication--of how much control the "bottom" is consciously trying to give up. For those who argue the presence of a safeword shows it's all a game, to they concede then the converse, i.e. that the absence of a safeword is an indication it is not a game and the couple are trying to approximate, as closely as possible and practicable, a genuine exchange of authority?

      Of course, a safeword also may reflect the stage of the relationship. If you're with someone new, or exploring limits for the first time, I can totally understand a safety measure such as a safeword.

      "These can put me in a zone where I really don’t have the psychological will to refuse or exist a spanking she is determined to deliver." I totally get that and understand it. My whole reason for writing this post was that those using "pretend" in the pejorative sense or trying to poke holes in the whole notion of non-consent would probably just dismiss it and say your psychological submission doesn't really mean you can't still revoke the consent if things get too tough. That's what I meant by insisting on this overly literal and exclusive notion of non-consent that removes all nuance and implicitly insists it's totally binary. It's an argument that works only to the extent that everyone agrees that the non-consent skeptic gets to set the rule for one non-consent means and can get away with imposing the most narrow, hyper-literalist possible definition.

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    2. “It's an argument that works only to the extent that everyone agrees that the non-consent skeptic gets to set the rule for one non-consent means and can get away with imposing the most narrow, hyper-literalist possible definition.”
      I think you have nailed the issue here and that is who gets to define non –consent. But there may be a fundamental dis-connect on this between folks that could broadly be identified as BDSM and those who are more focused on spanking to the exclusion of other fetishes. Most if not all I have talked to who identify as BDSM do see it as a game, some even referring to their preferences as “high protocol”. There are spankos in this category also but apparently not many who blend spanking with DD. And I think this applies to all flavors of DD spanking (M/F, F/F etc.)
      In other words the paradigms are different with regard to what is consensual non consent which means the definitions will be different as well. That may be what we are dealing with here – hence probably an irresolvable difference
      Alan

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    3. Alan, I suspect you're right that the disagreements and angst result from mixing paradigms and that it isn't really resolvable. It's too bad, as there obviously is room for appreciating and practicing spanking both as a game and as something meant to be more real. The arguments and ill will seem to happen when there is an insistence that one paradigm is "true" or "right" and the other "pretend," "false" or "wrong."

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  2. I have to say that I got a little dizzy with your post. It went round enough times for me to start losing my balance. We have wrestled with consent over the years and our definition is simple. I want Mrs. Lion to discipline me as needed. I don't necessarily *want* her to spank me when she feels I need punishment. In fact, most of the time I don't want a spanking. She is a very strict disciplinarian.

    The fact that I don't want to be spanked doesn't violate our agreement. I agreed to let her decide when and how to punish me. She has said that if I withdraw my consent, she will never go back. I'm free to stop dd, but if I do, it's gone forever.

    There are no fuzzy "consent to not consent" with us. My consent isn't to being spanked. It's to transferring authority and the right to punish me to my wife. If I value the benefits I get from giving her this right, I will accept whatever she wishes to do to educate me. If I don't, it will stop forever. No matter how much I don't want a spanking, I do want the dd relationship.

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    1. Funny thing is, when I sat down to write it I thought it would be short and pithy. Must have had one too many cups of strong coffee yesterday morning.

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    2. Caged,
      I liked your concise explanation. It pretty much matches how it works for my wife and me. I am not sure that she would stop DD forever if I ever did insist she not punish me for something sometime, but there is no question that it would be a big step along that path, and a risk that I would never be willing to take.

      -ZM

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    3. ZM wrote "I am not sure that she would stop DD forever if I ever did insist she not punish me for something sometime”

      I asked my wife about this because it came up in another context. It has never happened with us because we had very clear expectations from day one and previous experience with a former GF taught me how damaging it is. But I have been defiant a few times and came close to the edge, so I asked her. Her response was that she would just walk away and wait for me to come to her and then she would make sure I never did it again. At first I think I was a little shaken by that and felt a little more “controlled” than I am used to feeling. But as it sunk in I realized she is not going to let my momentary stupidity destroy what DD gives us. And I don’t intend to ever test her on her promise. But I love her even more for her commitment to it
      Alan

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    4. "Her response was that she would just walk away and wait for me to come to her and then she would make sure I never did it again." What an incredibly balanced, thoughtful, adult approach!

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  3. I echo the thoughts of Caged Lion. My 'consent' came during the discussion phase of forming our agreement. I agreed, 'consented' to giving her the control over determining whether a discipline spanking is warranted. We do have a list of offenses, each with a prescribed punishment, but she is not bound by the prescribed punishment and can alter anything about it. Meaning number of strokes, implement(s) or position. Once she determines a punishment spanking is due, I have no way for 'non-consent' or to disagree or debate the issue. So even though I may not agree with her determination to spank or 'non consent' at this time, consent was given at the beginning of our relationship. So in short, the last statement by Caged Lion sums it up exactly. I will take the spanking to maintain the DD relationship.

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    1. "I will take the spanking to maintain the DD relationship." Right, and this is what I mean by, absent some kind of true overwhelming physical force, we always have a choice in pretty much every single thing we do in life, if you want to put the most literal possible spin on it. It's just all about what consequences are you willing to accept and what are too unpalatable. In the real adult world, there are limits to how much we can engineer a truly imposed punishment, but that doesn't mean people's efforts to create one are "pretend."

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    2. "In the real adult world, there are limits to how much we can engineer a truly imposed punishment, but that doesn't mean people's efforts to create one are 'pretend.'" - Being an engineer, I simply must take a stab at it. OK, so you consent to be punished while completely and very tightly restrained and also with a ball gag in your mouth and a blindfold in place. At that point, it becomes consensual non-consent if she goes harder or longer than you want, but you can't communicate your wanting it to stop, so while the punishment itself may not be truly imposed, the eventual scope if it might very well be...

      -ZM

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  4. Dan, great essay.

    I have a friend like the Mexico City coworker. I've gotten to where I'll interrupt him and say, "you tell me what word means X and then we'll continue the conversation." Otherwise we'll never discuss anything interesting. And, I don't know about the dining opinions you were hearing, but my friend's specially defined knowledge isn't really helpful. I think he would know more if he worried less about categorizing so he could develop a richer mental framework so he could remember and be changed by more of the aspects of his experiences.

    In turn, developing that rich mental framework helps with DD. All that nuance and ambiguity and unclassifiable experience can be enjoyed, but not when the goal is "real spanking or we failed" or "wife was aggressive or we failed" or "favorite position or we failed." These are all fixations I've caught myself having.

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    1. Great observations in your last paragraph, MW.

      My friend is a piece of work, though I love him like a brother. He once lectured me that I was using the wrong wine glass. Not that I screwed up something like white versus read. No, it was that I was drinking pinot through a glass that wasn't right for pinot. Until that moment, I had no idea there were specific types of glasses matched to specific reds.. And, he's so fussy about food that people at work really would exclude him from lunch invitations because he was just such a pain in the ass. In the case of Mexican food, most but not all of his angst seems to be aimed at burritos.

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    2. My older self reads this above and huffs something like “clinical” or “pretentious” to describe these kinds of mutterings making much ado about not much. But my younger self remember that the GF who introduced me to DD spanking originally gave me many spankings for what she called “living in your head” and not paying attention to her and real world things that matter- and frankly I think I was more than a little like your friend Sometimes. I don’t think I was quite the dean of decorum your friend sounds like but I did space out a bit and the spankings did make me aware of it. Maybe he needs a spanking once in a while too
      Alan

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    3. Oh, I think he very much needs a spanking but I also think he's probably the last guy in the world who would allow it. He's an interesting dude. It's not so much a matter of decorum. Rather, he's just very consumed by trying to make every experience the very best it can possibly be. Honestly, I'm pretty glad that I don't have such refined tastes, because to me being that refined just means that most of the experiences you have in life are going to disappoint you. I've always liked the fact that I enjoy my weekly burritos from Chipotle exactly as much I enjoy a very high-end restaurant meal. Honestly, I enjoy the Chipotle more.

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    4. "Honestly, I enjoy the Chipotle more."

      You are one of those folks Diogenes was seeking with his lantern. I wonder if he ever found any. In ancient Greece, maybe not
      Alan

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    5. Some of my foodie friends are appalled by my candor on that particular issue.

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    6. Oh yeah. A Chipotle drive-thru opened near me and I probably need to make my number of visits a spankable goal, at least, the number of times I buy the guac add-on...

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    7. It's definitely one of my biggest weaknesses where maintaining my girlish figure is concerned.

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  5. Danielle here:

    I’m not online much these days, but I thought I would drop in briefly to wish everyone here a Merry Christmas. However, Dan’s deep dive into linguistics and the issue of consent has got me thinking, so I will give my 2 cents worth.

    I agree with Dan's post and with the comments posted so far by Allan and Spanked Cowboy and Caged Lion. Though I am on the other side of the hairbrush from Caged Lion, his words resonate with me:

    "There are no fuzzy "consent to not consent" with us. My consent isn't to being spanked. It's to transferring authority and the right to punish me to my wife. If I value the benefits I get from giving her this right, I will accept whatever she wishes to do to educate me. If I don't, it will stop forever. No matter how much I don't want a spanking, I do want the dd relationship."

    That's exactly how I see it. My husband asked for an FLR, and when I agreed to give him what he requested, he agreed to submit to my leadership and to my disciplinary measures. Within that framework, I would say it is imprecise to say that my husband "consents" to the specific punishments I mete out because, in my mind, I don't need his consent. It would be more precise to say that he "submits" to punishment. One could reply that by submitting he is consenting, since he could choose at any time not to submit. But I feel that submission and consent are psychologically distinct.

    I think of "consent" as a term that applies to sex acts, so it makes sense to say spankings should be "consensual" within the context of BDSM. But DD is a different context. When I spank my husband, or punish him in other ways, for truly disciplinary purposes that transcend his kinks, I don’t think about “consent” any more than I did when I used to discipline my sons. I think my point can be illustrated when you consider that spanking isn't the only form of punishment I use. I sometimes punish Wayne by grounding him or by taking away privileges or in other ways. He has never explicitly "consented" to those kinds of punishments, and I know he doesn't like them, but he submits. To me it would sound silly to ask whether my husband “consents” to being grounded or to being told he can’t watch TV or whatever. I expect my husband to submit to those things, according to the agreed terms of our FLR, not to "consent". Spanking as discipline is analogous in my mind.

    Anyway, I hope everyone has a great Christmas.

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    1. Thanks, Danielle. "When I spank my husband, or punish him in other ways, for truly disciplinary purposes that transcend his kinks, I don’t think about “consent” any more than I did when I used to discipline my sons." I think that hits the nail on the head as to the kind of dynamic some of us are looking for. I also love you second to last sentence and the way you distinguish "submit" and "consent."

      Merry Christmas to you and Wayne!

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    2. Dan and Danielle,
      "To me it would sound silly to ask whether my husband “consents” to being grounded or to being told he can’t watch TV or whatever. I expect my husband to submit to those things, according to the agreed terms of our FLR, not to "consent".
      I agree with this rationale and how it applies related to my husband. He was already disciplined by me before we had a FLR. He "submits" to me. This is how we agreed to have our FLR-marriage run. I "consented" to lead our marriage. You mentioned "grounding" and suspending "privileges" as punishment. These punishments can be very effective. The last time I grounded my husband he was quite annoyed because he had to miss a golf date planned for the upcoming weekend. He complied but "consent" was unneeded.
      Have a Happy Holiday season!
      Carol H.

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    3. Thanks, Carol. I understand why both you and Danielle stress the power of grounding and other non-spanking punishments. My wife doesn't use those very often, but she has a few times. I personally think they can be more effective than spanking, particularly for more deeply rooted issues.

      Happy holidays to you, too!

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    4. Merry Christmas to you, Danielle, and happy holidays to everyone!

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    5. Danielle,
      I always enjoy reading your comments. I think you exactly nailed it on this issue! I was surprised because while consensual non-consent is always one of my favorite topics, you put an entirely new spin on it which really resonated with me.

      I agree fully with the way you differentiated consent and submission and I think the way you described it applies perfectly in the case of DD. In a way, it is a bit ironic, because I think a lot of us (myself included) really shy away from the whole dominance and submission thing and don't consider ourselves as submissives, yet in reality, our submission is more real than that of submissives in a BDSM roleplay.

      "I think of "consent" as a term that applies to sex acts, so it makes sense to say spankings should be "consensual" within the context of BDSM." - Agree fully. I posted elsewhere that I view consent as being more of a spectrum, ranging from "enthusiastic about it" on one end and "will die before letting it happen" on the other end. If there is ANY possible way to stop something, regardless of how unpleasant or horrible that other way might be, and if you allow it to happen rather, it does mean at least some level of consent. Obviously, that definition of consent is NOT the one we want to use for sex, since then most rapes would be considered consensual, and I am pretty sure that is not the case. So when we say consent with regards to sexual acts, I think we mean more "I want it to happen or at least I am ok with it happening." And that type of consent should be present in BDSM spankings. However, if we use that definition of consent, it does not really apply to DD spankings, at least for me, because I don't want that spanking to happen and I am not really ok with it happening, but I submit to it because I DO want the DD relationship and spankings just come with the territory.

      "To me it would sound silly to ask whether my husband “consents” to being grounded or to being told he can’t watch TV or whatever." - Exactly!

      Merry Christmas to you and Wayne. Maybe you two will get a chance to hang out with your friend Barb some! Hahaha, not so sure if Wayne would like that or not!

      -ZM

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    6. "I think a lot of us (myself included) really shy away from the whole dominance and submission thing and don't consider ourselves as submissives, yet in reality, our submission is more real than that of submissives in a BDSM roleplay." Very well put!

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    7. Dan, Danielle, ZM, et al,
      I agree such submission can be more real than BSDM play. I've realized that having a submissive spouse sometimes complicates discipline. If you discipline a spouse who is also into some of the BSDM kink like my hubby is, it can make you question how far and how effective discipline is. Spanking can be interpreted as kink, so it isn't always effective as punishment. My husband failed to do something he promised over and over again that I wanted done before the summer. I grounded him and he missed a golf date. The task got done. Even if the task was completed the morning before his golf game, he would still have been grounded. He was upset but admitted he deserved what he got. But when he misled me on a financial matter grounding would not have worked effectively. It would have been impractical to ground him for weeks and weeks. Also, hubby agreed to be truthful and he knows I'm truthful with him. Truth makes a relationship stronger. With a financial trust violation hubby got caned, hard. I wasn't going to put up with that. I drew his punishment out because I lectured about what he had done, and because I felt he needed some breaks because it seemed like it was uncomfortable for him to say the least. I also needed to remain calm. Again, hubby admitted he deserved what he got. He actually got more because I took full control the money, though I seek his input. He knew I wasn't just satisfying his kink side. Here are two examples of how I believe effective punishment works for us but I think I see how submission may be more real for some. It sounds like I've over analyzed this, but punishment needs to be effective if someone wants to be held accountable, and it shouldn't be just to satisfy some BSDM kink desires they have.
      Carol H.

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    8. I don't think that's over-analyzing it at all. If it's really about accountability and correcting bad behavior, you have to go with what works, and what works in one situation may not work in another

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    9. Carol H wrote: “With a financial trust violation hubby got caned, hard. I wasn't going to put up with that. I drew his punishment out because I lectured about what he had done, and because I felt he needed some breaks because it seemed like it was uncomfortable for him to say the least”

      This is really interesting and offers some insight into why and when some disciplinarians feel alternate punishments are sometimes useful and appropriate. You seem to be suggesting there is a hierarchy of bad behavior with severe corporal punishment needed for the most heinous offenses, while a punishment like grounding works for something like not getting tasks done on time ( or at all).

      I can see the logic of this and why you and some others use it. If in effect you are grading offenses with the worst being addressed with paddle or cane, then it all works. But here is where I don’t understand the use of alternate punishment.

      You apparently endured days, maybe weeks for him to perform, punished him with a significant grounding and finally got results. But why put both of you through that when one or two hard spanking would have fixed the problem in a couple of days at the longest. That is what my wife would have and has done - and believe me there is no long protracted procrastination in getting things she wants done.Nor is there any lingering resentment which alternate punishments can trigger.

      The notion that you cannot manage a male spankos behavior with spanking because they have a spanking fetish is an understandable view but your own experience recounted above (caning) reveals that isn’t the case with a disciplinary spanking.

      Yes spankos get an erotic fulfillment from the act of spanking. But that eroticism is in anticipating the spanking or remembering it. It is definitely not experiencing it –and if you make that experience something he doesn’t want to repeat – you are both managing his behavior (providing discipline) and fulfilling his needs.

      So my real question -which is also a comment: Why fix it if it ain’t broke? Why use alternate punishment when spanking works so well and so (relatively) quickly?
      Alan

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    10. Alan asked: >>>So my real question -which is also a comment: Why fix it if it ain’t broke? Why use alternate punishment when spanking works so well and so (relatively) quickly?<<<

      Alan, I realize your question is addressed to Carol, and I can't answer for her, but I can say why I like non-spanking punishments. In your view, an advantage of spanking is that it is finished quickly. But what if I don't want it to be finished quickly? What if I want my husband to have to think about his misdeed, and to suffer the consequences, for an extended period of time? Besides, spanking versus non-spanking punishment isn't a simple either/ or. Sometimes I like to do both, and Carol has clearly said that she does too. Once we got into FLR, I discovered that I like having power over my husband. It feels sexy. So why would I want to give up a disciplinary toolbox containing a variety of tools for one that contained a single tool? In my mind, that would reduce the pleasurable feeling I get from being in control.
      Danielle

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    11. Danielle and Alan,
      Danielle nailed it as far as what my answer would be, except she responded more concisely. I tend to go on unfortunately. I think it's a sure bet that Danielle and I have vastly more authority over our husbands. In my marriage hubby finds it pleasurable and rewarding to be submissive. And, like Danielle, I enjoy the power I have over hubby. I have kinks and interests too. He looks forward to some of the surprises I occasionally come up with without revealing more. As Danielle said, "It feels sexy." It really does. It's more sexy because he wanted this relationship. Alternate punishment can be very effective. For example, something like forgetting to take my car for inspection or procrastinating about planting shrubs doesn't automatically require pain. If I've given him sufficient reminders and warnings and he fails, he might find himself grounded or confined to our home to straighten out closets. Sometimes I make punishment fun. My husband and I want to have fun and he wants discipline too. I'm not comfortable with hitting or spanking him consistently as punishment and I don't need to since, like Danielle, I'm in control. Punishment is at my discretion.

      Have a Happy Holiday,
      Carol H.

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    12. Danielle and Carol,
      Thanks for responding to my question. In asking the question I was not in any way suggesting or implying your use of alternate punishments was wrong or ineffective. For you they work and as a couple apparently both husband and wife are fulfilled by it. What I was saying however was that alternative punishments have never worked for me very well compared to a spanking and sometimes I have resented them which is toxic in a DD relationship. I experience a disciplinary spanking as a loving caring act; that has not been for me the same experience with some other alternative punishments. Whether other husbands share this characteristic or not I will let for them to say,
      I have noted before that both of you use alternative punishments to reinforce a spanking and a spanking to reinforce alternative punishment. This makes some sense to me and it is possible that if my wife started reinforcing spanking with alternative punishment as you describe, they might work for me. It’s just not an experience I have had.
      But on the utility of reinforcement I certainly agree in principal with it and in fact that was one of the points that Aunt Kay of the iconic DWC made over and over. I believe it was a key point for her.But her reinforcements were juvenile, humbling and always spanking related reinforcements like corner time, a period of wearing panties, embarrassment about being spanked or losing male underwear privileges and things of that nature. I have experienced some of those reinforcements, they do work for me and I don’t resent them when they are used.
      One otter aspect to this is the difference between an FLR and a DD. Both of you are in full FLR’s while we are not. That certainly influences the power exchange more in terms of scope than degree. My wife’s disciplinary authority is limited only by her determination of where she wants to go with it. And there are areas she has no desire to go into, like money management, overall travel planning and our circle of friends. I think it is fair to say both of you are exercising more power and authority in your marriages than she is – and she like it that way and so do you.
      Alan

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  6. Dan, I think this is an interesting topic, and you laid it out with some great examples I hadn't much considered.

    My answer may be getting old here but, again, my desires for DD are connected to my upbringing and parental authority. Of course, there's no way for this actual legal authority to exist as an adult, but that is the desire. The way I imagine it is that, as an adult, I could choose my "parent." She wants to impose discipline and, if she's right for me, then I submit to her judgment. It's not so far from what I experienced as an adolescent. I "consented" to a spanking from a parent because I didn't resist, despite sincerely and completely not wanting it to happen. I could have resisted. I believe I could have refused, and my parents would have backed down. I don't see them physically fighting me over it, and I don't believe they'd have abandoned me either. However, I had a loyalty and emotional investment in them and their place in my life. I imagine having that kind of respect for my wife, and her authority is real because of that respect, and that I don't want to destroy it.

    That's what I think of as consensual non-consent. I know that there's a strong sexual motivation behind it, but I'm not delusional or pretending anything, and I get that others don't understand what I'm talking about.

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    1. "However, I had a loyalty and emotional investment in them and their place in my life. I imagine having that kind of respect for my wife, and her authority is real because of that respect, and that I don't want to destroy it." Exactly.

      I know I've harped on it here often (maybe too often), but one of the reasons I was so fascinated by the Nxivm group is the way they tried to build some reality into non-consent through their "collateral" system in which initiates would turn over something like embarrassing information or pictures, and agree they could be released if they didn't hit certain personal performance goals. Now, the direction one part of the group ultimately went in was hugely problematic, but the underlying idea was pretty compelling and looked a lot like "consensual non-consent." They initiates consented to the overall plan, but could theoretically lose all control over the "collateral" they put up. I say "theoretically" because I haven't read or seen anything indicating that such collateral ever actually was released against someone's will.

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  7. Re the whole consent issue, it seems to me there is a large difference between the way we “think” about it in the cognitive “higher brain “ sense - and the way we actually feel about it when it is happening. What I am suggesting is that we use the same process “ratiocination) Poe first described when we think and talking about consent. But we experience emotionally the whole consent process very differently.
    Here is an example of what I am trying to unbundle. With my former GF, a very early rule was that she had full authority to discipline me as we then put it “anytime, anyplace and for any reason she thought necessary” Cognitively I gave full consent to that , if fact I was enthusiastic about it. I consented without reservations (or a safe word “absolutely to her discipline.
    But when the serious spanking actually started my reactions often ranged from whining submission to full defiance. The thing I remember best about those times was a number of times I jumped off her lap or stopped the spanking because I thought I couldn’t take any more. Yes, this was awful behavior but also proof that I had not really consented except in my head. Emotionally I had not consented to real punishment.

    This caused much tension between us and really made me think about what I wanted and needed and in the process I think my emotional consent finally aligned with my cognitive consent. I know when it happened. During one severe spanking I was reaching that point where I knew I could not take any more and just about to stop it - and then something changed and I began to think how much I needed ( and deserved) what was happening and I think I just let go to her authority and stopped fighting it. It was a defining moment. I never defied her again during a spanking and think that was the moment of real consent. But it wasn’t cognitive at all, but entirely emotional and in the moment.
    I am not suggesting at all that our discussion of the nature of consensual non consent is wrong. But maybe it’s incomplete, and the real process is a two stage one where cognitive consent is necessary but nut sufficient without emotional consent grounded in actual experience.
    Alan

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    1. "I am not suggesting at all that our discussion of the nature of consensual non consent is wrong. But maybe it’s incomplete, and the real process is a two stage one where cognitive consent is necessary but nut sufficient without emotional consent grounded in actual experience."

      That makes total sense to me.

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    2. Danielle here:

      Alan wrote: >>>During one severe spanking I was reaching that point where I knew I could not take any more and just about to stop it - and then something changed and I began to think how much I needed ( and deserved) what was happening and I think I just let go to her authority and stopped fighting it. It was a defining moment. I never defied her again during a spanking and think that was the moment of real consent. But it wasn’t cognitive at all, but entirely emotional and in the moment. <<<

      Alan, I totally get what you are saying about defining moments that move the D/s relationship to a deeper emotional level. With Wayne and me, I wouldn't say there was a single such moment. There were probably several. And in our case, the emotional breakthroughs didn't involve severe spanking but non-spanking punishments that Wayne resisted but ultimately accepted. For example, I have previously told the story about the year Wayne missed the Super Bowl because I grounded him without TV privileges the week it was on. That punishment was more severe than I originally intended because I had forgotten about the Super Bowl. That was a big thing for Wayne because it was "a tradition" (in his words) for him and his buddies to watch it together. I might have relented, since it was more punitive than I originally intended, except that Wayne made the mistake of telling me I couldn't do that. At that point I dug in my heels because I resented being told what I could or couldn't do. Either I was the boss or I wasn't! Wayne argued vehemently with me about it, insisting it wasn't fair, and he eventually pleaded with me to suspend the punishment for one day, offering to accept a longer period of punishment as a trade-off. But I didn't relent. I felt like I was being cruel, but I got a perverse satisfaction from it. Also, once I was dug in, I was curious to see whether Wayne would rebel and refuse to submit. I realize my stubbornness could have turned out to be unwise, as it could have resulted in lasting resentment on Wayne's part. But when it came to game day, he surrendered and stopped fighting my authority the way you describe surrendering to that extreme spanking. I think his ultimate surrender was a defining moment for both of us.

      I recall that I spanked Wayne on game day, but it wasn't a severe spanking. At that point he had already knuckled under, so the spanking was more symbolic than punitive. To me that spanking felt like a victory lap, and I suspect it made things easier for him. Come to think of it, I think we ended up having sex that evening. I’ve heard that many husbands would rather watch sports than have sex, but I like to think that having sex was some consolation to my husband. ;-)

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    3. Danielle,
      I responded above but will add here that your experience with Wayne, submitting to your authority about missing the Super bowl, does strike clear parallels with the similar experience we had using a paddle. In both cases the husbands gave up resistance and submitted to their wife’s authority. And it sounds like both experiences had the same consequences going forward, I e faster submission and obedience in similar situations.
      But I don’t think that, ergo, both approaches to exercising feminine authority are equally effective. That is because the husband involved is going to respond differently to different tactics.
      I am an otherwise alpha male much like Dan describes himself who submits to his wife’s corporal punishment. Only the paddle or brush really controls my behavior and produces real discipline. Physical punishment is what works.
      Looking beyond this blog or any of the personalities who comment here, it seems clear from many other blogs that there are many males who do not need spanking to behave or obey. They submit to their wife or girlfriend apparently sometimes without punishment or the threat of it being present at all. I am not one of them and that is why spanking and the threat of it works so well. Domestic discipline and Female led Relationships is not a one size fits all phenomena, In fact, the variations within these relationships can be mind boggling. And that is what I think we are talking about here
      Viv la difference!
      Alan

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    4. “Vive la diffĂ©rence!” Exactly! I agree completely, Alan.

      You wrote: >>>I am an otherwise alpha male much like Dan describes himself who submits to his wife’s corporal punishment. Only the paddle or brush really controls my behavior and produces real discipline. Physical punishment is what works.<<<

      I wouldn’t describe my husband as an “alpha male”, and I don’t think he would describe himself that way. But I have the feeling that for a man who thinks of himself as an alpha male, physical punishment may be less humbling than non-physical punishment. There may even be something macho about submitting to the ordeal of a harsh paddling, whereas there is nothing macho about being grounded or sent to your room or told that you can’t watch TV for a few days. Is that perhaps the reason you would resent non-physical punishments, rendering them ineffective? Maybe that would go against your sense of self?

      In our case, our journey into FLR began with my husband’s spanking fetish, but it didn’t end there. Maybe he would have preferred if spanking was the only form of discipline I used. But I think he submits to other forms of discipline because his kink goes deeper than spanking. I think he has an erotic need to submit to me, so for him being grounded isn’t radically different than being spanked. It may appear to most people to be “less kinky” than spanking, but I don’t think it is. I think D/s relationships are kinky with or without spanking.
      Danielle

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    5. Danielle and Alan, et al
      Danielle, I was intrigued when you wrote, "In our case, our journey into FLR began with my husband’s spanking fetish, but it didn’t end there. But I think he submits to other forms of discipline because his kink goes deeper than spanking. I think he has an erotic need to submit to me, so for him being grounded isn’t radically different than being spanked."

      I can relate because my husband and I communicate. I insist on it because DD and an FLR should be fun and beneficial, although my hubby has learned it's unwise to run afoul of me. He has learned to share feelings over the years. It's not easy for some people. While this started as playful spanking, my husband told me the reason he wanted to move beyond it was that he wanted to be submissive to me. He prefers things like getting a "honey do list". Hubby tries hard to complete what I want. Spanking is one form of punishment in my own tool box. He doesn't necessarily enjoy punishment but has the fetish. He does enjoy pleasing me and the threat of discipline is exciting to him. Obviously, there's a reality check to work tasks. For instance, if he's had hours of unplanned office work on the weekend I can't punish him if something doesn't get done. He's well aware that he still has to do what I've asked. If he still fails to deliver, that's going to be one of the topics to be "discussed" at a weekly discipline session when I put on my Mean Carol face. Those can be fun sessions if I'm pleased. Grounding can also happen there. DD and a FLR are wonderful. My life is less complicated, and hubby is obedient and lives a structured life he prefers. I try to balance my demands so he isn't so loaded with tasks that resentment overshadows the relationship. He does a lot of chores. I pitch in if I have to.

      " There may even be something macho about submitting to the ordeal of a harsh paddling, whereas there is nothing macho about being grounded or sent to your room or told that you can’t watch TV for a few days."
      Agreed. My husband is a big guy. I know he's not necessarily happy being grounded like a child, sent to bed, told TV is off limits, or kicked off the living room furniture (I get great foot rubs when he sits on the floor).

      "I think D/s relationships are kinky with or without spanking."
      True. I think so.

      Holiday Wishes!
      Carol H.

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    6. Danielle and Carol,
      There well may be a lot of truth in what Danielle is speculating about alpha males. I do believe there is a very wide type of males who respond to the exercise of female authority. I do know that I need to have obedience and authority imposed upon me before I submit to it. And as we have discussed many times, eroticism supplies much of the energy which drives that.

      Ultimately the people involved and the nature of the relationship at any one point in time is needed to explain any of it or how it works. DD relationships (and FLR’s) are anything but static or cookie cutter. And different partners produce different relationships. I have been fortunate in having two DD relationships with two wonderful women but they have been very different in many ways and so have I
      Carol, I enjoy and appreciate your fun orientation to DD. Discipline can be serious business but keeping it fun as well actually makes it more effective and the bonding more natural And yes as Danielle also suggests there may be something macho about submitting to a severe spanking that appeals to an alpha male. Maybe this is a topic that deserves a discussion
      Happy Holidays to all
      Alan

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    7. "I wouldn’t describe my husband as an “alpha male”, and I don’t think he would describe himself that way. But I have the feeling that for a man who thinks of himself as an alpha male, physical punishment may be less humbling than non-physical punishment." I haven't thought of it that way before, but I need to ponder it. I do think that in terms of my reaction, in the moment I have a much bigger aversion to being told to do a chore or having her tell me to do something like turn off the TV and go to bed than I do to the threat of a spanking.

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    8. Danielle wrote: "But I have the feeling that for a man who thinks of himself as an alpha male, physical punishment may be less humbling than non-physical punishment. There may even be something macho about submitting to the ordeal of a harsh paddling, whereas there is nothing macho about being grounded or sent to your room or told that you can’t watch TV for a few days."

      Spanking is the most humbling punishment to me, by far. The humility I feel is not entirely rational, so I can't completely explain the reason for the feelings. There's nothing macho about it to me, even if I was able to take it with stoicism. My parents rarely if ever used grounding or similar disciplinary methods — or I don't remember them because they didn't leave an impression. However, I've come to realize that other punishments like loss of privileges could also still be powerful. I believe it would feel like a child's punishment, and that's an important ingredient. It is also an explicit display of domestic authority. I'd be looking for a women who is into spanking, but I would be attracted to my wife if she took control and shaped discipline as she sees fit, stronger than me asking her to do it my way. It must be HER way.

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    9. Brett wrote: “Spanking is the most humbling punishment to me, by far. The humility I feel is not entirely rational, so I can't completely explain the reason for the feelings. There's nothing macho about it to me, even if I was able to take it with stoicism”

      I agree completely. There have probably been times in my life (professional and personal) where the embarrassment was acute but these were not punishments. And my wife has scolded without adding physical chastisement and some of these have been very embarrassing especially when the may have been overheard,

      But none of those is nearly so humbling as being stripped, scolded, made to own your bad behavior and summit to spanking, or even made to ask for it . (One of my wife’s favorite techniques is to make me ask and tell her why I deserve it.)

      I don’t believe in humiliation at all but believe humbling the male ego from time to time is healthy for me and my relationship. Spanking does this in spades. And while I am still thinking about whether there is some male stoicism in taking a hard spanking, I know stoic is the last thing I feel when its over
      Alan

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  8. Happy Holidays, Dan, Club Members, and Lurkers alike! I hope everyone is enjoying the season.

    The idea of consensual non-consent has been a perennial discussion topic for all of my many years of following F/M DD Forums - I know that we have discussed it here more than once, but then, it does really lie at the heart of this lifestyle.

    And I really have nothing new to offer. Ultimately, as we are all aware, any of us can always walkaway from a spanking, so there is always consent at that most basic level. However, I think for most of us in a F/M DD relationship - where the contract seems to be most often that the wife spanks at her sole discretion, the initial consent that we give to being a spanked husband makes ongoing consent for individual spanking unnecessary, making it "effectively nonconsensual" at the daily level. (Nothing new there)

    I did enjoy Danielle's comment that she was certainly not worried about her husband's consents when he had a spanking coming, any more than she was worried about her kid's consent when they were younger. I would feel confident in saying that my wife feels the same way.

    I also appreciated Alan's comment about intellectual and emotional consent and the pscyology involved there. I think this is reflected in the observation that Alan and I have both shared here before - and that is that a certain point as a regularly spanked hubby, we reach the point where it becomes very psychologically difficult to refuse a spanking when that time has come. Above and beyond the "intellectual" realization that it is the "right thing" to do to honor our agreement to assume the position on command (a contract that almost all of us asked for to begin with) - it becomes somewhat of a psychological compulsion to do as instructed - in spite of the fact that at that moment in time (some more than others) we absolutely do not want a spanking, and in spite of the genuine fear and dread of the very real pain to come.

    --al


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  9. One further thought - Danielle mentioned Alan's comment:

    Alan wrote: >>>During one severe spanking I was reaching that point where I knew I could not take any more and just about to stop it - and then something changed and I began to think how much I needed ( and deserved) what was happening and I think I just let go to her authority and stopped fighting it. It was a defining moment. I never defied her again during a spanking and think that was the moment of real consent. But it wasn’t cognitive at all, but entirely emotional and in the moment. <<<

    I completely relate to this as well. In regard to my comment in the prior post - about realizing that I would find it very difficult psychologically to refuse to submit to a spanking once my wife has pronounced sentence - I clearly remember the first time that happened. It was fairly early on in our DWC commitment and we were home alone on a Saturday afternoon (kids were out somewhere for the afternoon) and along the way my wife determined that I had an attitude problem and needed a spanking. In truth, I was feeling in a funk and did NOT want a spanking - but then realized that didn't matter. My wife had told me I was going to be paddled - and that was that - whether I liked it or not. That revelation was one of those defining moments for us.

    And, like in Alan's account, I also remember one time in particular early on that I came very close to stopping a really tough paddling but somehow in making the effort to endure, I finally found myself able to just submit to the pain, and emotionally accept "what I had coming" - a deeper level of submission and certainly another of those early defining moments. --al

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    1. Hi al. Thanks for dropping by. Happy Holidays to you and your family!

      "In truth, I was feeling in a funk and did NOT want a spanking - but then realized that didn't matter. My wife had told me I was going to be paddled - and that was that - whether I liked it or not." I know that feeling well. I don't regularly try to talk my way out of a spanking or delay one but, when I have done it, it has tended to be when I was in some kind of funk. It was that emotional state, and not the fear of a spanking per se, that caused me to try to put it off or get out of it. Though, on the occasions when I have succeeded in delay or avoidance, I almost always regret it.

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    2. Hi al and very Happy Holidays to you. I have mentioned in past how strikingly similar many of our experiences have been. And your wife does sound so much like mine right down to the relationship she has with her sister, I still suspect they exchange notes.

      So maybe you would like to take a stab at a question that occurred to me during my discussion above with Danielle and Carol. My question is not about the efficacy of spanking compared to alternative punishments. We have pretty well exhausted that for now. But it stimulated me to wonder if there are both alpha and non - alpha males seeking female authority in relationships – and those males are importantly different in terms of their behavior within a relationship, the sort of relationship they seek, and the discipline to which they respond positively.

      Previously I had not thought a lot about this assuming we were all on a spectrum of acceptance and submission to female authority. But the spanking issues Danielle and Carol raised are making me reexamine this. Maybe you have left this thread, so I will keep this for another time but if you are still around I would love to hear your thoughts on it
      Alan

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    3. Alan, I would call myself an alpha male and I was seeking female authority to bring me into line in my marriage when I got out of line. Though we both wanted the marriage to be husband-led, we wanted my wife to be sufficiently empowered to be able to discipline me effectively. Regarding discipline I respond positively to, it is definitely spankings: I could not foresee myself responding to things like humiliation, as I would still want to feel respected throughout. However, I wanted there to be consequences when I misbehaved and for those consequences to end quickly after being administered, hence why spanking is the ideal punishment.

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    4. Hi Alan,
      I know you were asking Al, so I hope he is able to write some on this, since I look forward to hearing his thoughts. However, I hope you won't mind if I chime in. I don't really have any definitive answers or even strong opinions, but I do thing the topic is very interesting.

      Regarding whether there are both alpha and non - alpha males seeking female authority in relationships, I can only say that over the years here on the blog, both alpha and non-alpha males seem to be represented. This whole issue is probably somewhat complicated by how "alpha" is defined by different people. For me, I see an alpha male as being one who is basically "take charge" in life, a type A personality. Of course, one additional thing to muddy the waters is that one can be pretty much an alpha outside the bedroom and submissive in the bedroom, or at least I think that might be the case.

      Anyway, there have been people here who either self-identify or were identified by others (like their spouse) as being alpha, and others who seem not to be, so I am pretty sure that both types (and everyone in between) can seek female authority in a relationship.

      Everything after this is pure speculation.

      I expect that the reasons that the two types might seek relationships might be quite divergent. Someone who is pretty strong alpha might want something to offset that. They recognize that their ego can be a problem if left unchecked, so if they submit to the female authority of their partner, it can be a way of restoring balance to the relationship. On the other hand, perhaps those who are distinctly non-alpha find it exhausting trying to be alpha in every facet of public life (as society seems to expect of males, especially those who wish to be successful). So for them, they might seek female authority within a relationship as a release of sorts. At least when they are at home, they don't need to maintain this appearance of always being in control, or maybe they need the comfort and security of someone else being in control for a while.

      I am not sure about "the sort of relationship they seek" so I will not even attempt on that, but I would like to understand more about what theories you might have.

      As for the discipline to which they respond positively, again I am just guessing, but I am thinking that maybe the alpha's would prefer harsh physical punishments (which damage their bottoms but less so their ego because in a way taking punishments reinforces just how strong they are), and might shy away from punishments that are more humiliating, which is most ironic since I think one key reason they might be attracted to this type of relationship is because in a way, they want someone to keep their ego in check. At the same time, those that are not alpha might still respond to physical punishments, but largely because of the the inherent humiliation accompanying being punished.

      As I type this, none of it really makes sense, because it seems to be backwards from what one would expect, so it is entirely possible that I am just wrong on all of it!

      -ZM

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    5. Danielle said: "I think he has an erotic need to submit to me, so for him being grounded isn’t radically different than being spanked." - At least so far, my wife has never used entirely non-physical punishments (though she has ventured into some other physical punishments that are not just spanking), so I can't say definitively how I would feel. But I am pretty sure that for me, it is all about authority being exercised and boundaries being enforced, so probably grounding wouldn't be radically different than being spanked as far as overall feelings. However, one wildcard in this is that grounding takes place over days or weeks, whereas spanking takes place in minutes, so I am not sure what effect that would have on how I would feel about everything.

      -ZM

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    6. ZM, I agree, my ego being unchecked could get me into a lot of trouble. People around me advised me to get married sooner rather than later, this being one of the reasons: nobody advised me specifically to seek F/M DD, but they advised me that being married is a very good way to ensure that these restraints exist. I took their advice and I am very glad I did: my wife disciplining me has rounded many of my sharp edges and kept me in check. That said, I suppose F/M DD also serves as a release as well.

      I suppose receiving spankings from my wife also adds to my perception of how strong I am, being able to take it. That said, I would rather not have the pain in the first place, hence why I am motivated not to repeat mistakes.

      I don't think you are wrong on all of it: a great many of your points are valid!

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    7. Hi ZM,
      Just seeing this.
      You are making several good points re alphas and non-alphas (we need a better term here but beta doesn’t do it either) I don’t have a lot of fixed notions about most of this and I see a lot of similarities in the way males seem to respond to the exercise of female authority.
      The points both Carol and Danielle have made independently about alternative punishments make it clear that not all males seeking or responding to female authority require spanking to be an exclusive punishment -- or as several other popular blogs attest – do some men need or want physical discipline at all. Some of the latter may well be because the female disciplinarian prefers some kind of non-corporal punishment when punishments are given. But whether it’s a woman’s preference or a males needs, it seems clear there are probably many males in female led relationships that include little or no spanking. My working assumption is (and it is only an assumption at this point) that there are few self-described alpha males in female led relationships that involve minimal or no spanking. But that is where it gets complicated because apparently there are plenty of non-alpha males who respond to spanking as well. Maybe this conversation will attract more comments on all of this
      Alan

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    8. Hugh wrote:"I wanted there to be consequences when I misbehaved and for those consequences to end quickly after being administered, hence why spanking is the ideal punishment"

      That is certainly one of the key benefits of using spanking versus alternative punishments. It is quick and clean and leaves little room for resentment or recriminations. But I have to add that I also see the logic that Danielle and Carol and others have cited in support of having alternative punishments available.
      Alan

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  10. Dan wrote: "I think we all agree that being physically overpowered and forced to submit is not what anyone means by non-consent in the DD context, and I don't think that needs to be spelled out in excruciating detail every time this subject of consensual non-consent or "pre-consent" comes up." which is completely true in most cases - at 6'2" I am unlikely to be forced into position by my 5'5" wife. However I can be emotionally overpowered in that we have discussed and agreed how my poor behaviour will be dealt with. We have agreed that our relationship in some ways hinges on that power that she has and that should she decide to take disciplinary action, I do not have the right to oppose. I can of course oppose and not allow her to take action, but that would fundamentally change/damage our relationship. There is a voluntary element to nearly all punishments - even as a boy I cannot remember ever being forced into position. Much and all as I did not want to be punished I would hold out my hand or bend over because the alternative actions - running away or similar - would, in my mind, produce worse consequences than the short term pain and humiliation of physical punishment. The same holds true for me as an adult. - TB

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  11. Agreed TB. My wife and I have had a great marriage, in my view, largely because of the outlet that F/M DD provides for my wife to deal with bad behaviour and there is no reason why I would want to risk all that by refusing to take a punishment. I don't have to deal with prolonged silences or headaches occurring every evening for several months on end: even if I were particularly reluctant (i.e. I didn't see the benefits in terms of rounding my sharp edges), I would see F/M DD as definitely a price worth paying.

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