Saturday, January 28, 2023

The Club - Meeting 427 - Communication Problems and Spankings for Big Things

When you don't respond to bad behavior, you get more of it. - Carly Fiorina


Hello all. Welcome back to The Disciplinary Couple’s Club.  Our weekly on-line gathering of men and women who are in, or would like to be in, a Domestic Discipline or Female Led Relationship.


I hope you all had a good week.  For us, it was another snowy one.  I did take advantage of it to get in one day of skiing, though the conditions were cold and windy, which became a great excuse for me and the guy I was skiing with to knock off early and drink beer in the lodge.  I’m not totally happy with myself in terms of the volume consumed and the extent to which I feel very tired today because of it, but it also was a good, long conversation with someone I hadn’t hung out with in a while.  So, I’m not going to beat myself up too much about it.


It probably won’t result in any punishment from Anne either.  We’ve gone back and forth recently about spanking for alcohol consumption, after having some disputes about what the rules should be when the consumption is just a matter of having “too many” but when there wasn’t any other bad behavior associated with it, like getting loud and obnoxious, staying up absurdly late, etc.  I’ve always been a little confused by why Anne has always been fairly quick to discipline for excessive alcohol consumption, which often has little if any real impact on her, while letting things like blatant disrespect or rudeness slide.


That may be beginning to change, and a recent example served to get me questioning some of my own beliefs about whether spankings work very well on bigger issues.


I do believe that, for the most part, spankings are going to be more effective in nipping smaller irritants in the bud (or the butt, bad pun intended).  Things like my repeated problem with leaving the garage door open or not locking all our doors at night or repeatedly leaving part of my job of cleaning up the kitchen after dinner undone or not done very well.  



I also think some problems may be too deeply rooted, or be too serious or anger-inducing, or touch too closely on someone’s identity to really be resolvable with a spanking.  A recent argument with Anne is making me question


I don’t want to go into the details, but Anne and I seem to be struggling a bit with how our routines have changed now that we’re both retired.  Lately, there has been an uncharacteristically large amount of friction around priority setting and spending time together. We haven't exactly been living the fantasy of retirement togetherness lately.

I got resentful, and probably a little jealous, about one way she was spending her time and about someone she was spending it with.  Instead of communicating how I was feeling, I let it fester until, when the issue arose again, I cut loose with a snippy, frustrated comment.  Things escalated from there into a full-blown argument and going to bed angry, which is rare for us. 


The next day, she came in from running some errands and, without much lead-in, announced in a very business-like tone that we needed to have a talk about my communication style. 


She observed (correctly) that I clearly had been holding in a lot of resentment on something that she didn't even know was an issue. Thus, she had no opportunity to correct the problem because I’d given her no reason to know that it was a problem for me. 


She asked whether I agreed with her reasoning. I reluctantly admitted that I did.


 She then announced, again in a very business-like tone:


“OK then. You are going to get a spanking for this. Even if you are frustrated and even if there might be a justification for it, you can’t talk to me like that.”


Note that she didn’t ask me whether I agreed with her decision that a spanking was coming or whether it was deserved.  Rather, she simply asked whether I agreed with the underlying facts.  I couldn’t really argue with her recitation of what had happened, and from there she moved directly into telling me what I was in for as a result. In a comment last week, Alan brought up how is girlfriend was very concerned that every spanking had to be “fair,” and I think maybe there was a bit of that playing out in Anne asking me whether I agreed the facts were as she described, though I do think at that time she had already decided to spank for it.


I also should have seen it coming, since we had discussed at the beginning of the year that if a course of conduct merited a scolding, then it probably merited something a little more, shall we say, “tangible.” I had even suggested that she make that a New Year’s resolution.



What’s all this have to do with spanking for big issues and whether that works?  Well, for me our argument had been about something I really had gotten pretty worked up about. I was feeling aggrieved and definitely saw myself as the wronged party.


Yet, much of those resentful, angry feelings evaporated the second she told me I was going to be spanked.  I had been indulging myself with a little pity party, but the prospect of a forthcoming hard spanking gave my mind something more immediate, more concrete, and much more unpleasant to think about.


After she took control, the underlying problem that caused the resentment didn’t go away, but the internal emotional tenor of it suddenly seemed much less serious and the entire thing seemed more manageable.  And, of course, I now had much more reason to wish I had managed it and done so in a less emotional, more proactive, more adult-like way.


The almost immediate drop in the negative energy I’d been devoting to ruminating about the problem made me rethink some of my skepticism about using adult disciplinary spanking to solve big problems.


The core problem that had set me off had not been addressed. But, isn’t it the case that when we let ourselves get wound up about something, often the state of being wound up on the one hand, and the underlying problem on the other, are somewhat separable?


Big relationship problems are seldom simple and one-dimensional. They often involve a core issue that is important, is real, and does need to be dealt with.  But, that core issue often is bound up with a whole bunch of peripheral issues, including how we communicate about the issue to our partner, but also to ourselves. 


While the spanking may do nothing to solve the core problem, it can address some of the stuff that is making the core problem worse or preventing a solution to it.  Like unhelpful communication styles. Expressing anger and being disrespectful almost never resolves the underlying issue. Instead, it just makes the other party defensive and leads them to dig in their heels.



KOJ talked about this a couple of weeks ago, and maybe if I’d taken it more to heart then, I could have spared myself a very sore bottom. 


“We had some hot-button issues, like all couples. But my wife never tried to punish me for my position on one of those issues, but rather for my attitude in expressing my position. Some comments above express concern about being punished for one's "style of communication." But I knew full well when I was being inappropriate and deserving of punishment. My wife took the position that I should always be the consummate gentleman, especially with her but with others as well. So she would point out if I was being rude, harsh, disrespectful, yelling, overly sarcastic, etc. It wasn't what I was saying but how I was saying it. And that was spankable. In fact, that was the primary reason I was punished over the years.  She was very clear: "You are not being spanked for your opinion but for how you are expressing it in a disrespectful manner." Of course, she was right, and I accepted those punishments, even if it was a hot-button issue. In actuality, after she had spanked me really hard and adjusted my attitude, we then often were able to discuss the hot-button issue in a much more level-headed way, and possibly reach some resolution, or at least agree to disagree without hostility or resentment. But first I needed to be humbled over her knee.”


When Anne let me know that I was going to be spanked, it wasn’t that she was refusing to see or address my underlying concern. Rather, she was making it clear that even if I was riled up about something, that didn’t relieve me of the obligation to raise it respectfully and give her a reasonable opportunity to respond.


It also resulted in me instantly getting much more clarity around the fact that I had gotten snotty with her about something that she had no real reason to know was a problem for me. 


Had she made that point the day before, when I was at the peak of my agitation about the whole thing, I probably would have asserted that the “whole thing” should have been readily apparent, so why did I need to point it out?  Of course, that’s a great, all-purpose excuse for not communicating like an adult, isn’t it?



I do believe that one big reason my moodiness lifted almost immediately after she pronounced the sentence was I now had something else to think about.  But, isn’t it interesting how a sound spanking can almost instantly alter your view of the substance of an argument and give you a new, immediate openness to the other party’s perspective?


I also wanted to quickly note something about the spanking itself.  Some of us have brought up that wooden instruments have a tendency to numb, but ZM has pointed out that even after such numbness has occurred, the wife might still want to extend the spanking because those cumulative swats are what make you sore for days afterward.  That happened this time.  She focused a lot of attention on one spot on each cheek, bringing the brush down over and over again on that same spot.  It’s now been six days since that spanking, and I still have some pretty significant soreness.


I don’t have any specific questions for the group or a firm topic suggestion related to this, but I look forward to any thoughts you may have about it.


One other item:  I've mentioned that I've thought from time to time about writing a book about Domestic Discipline and FLR relationships.  I don't know whether I'll ever get around to it, but I'd be interested in any suggestions any of you might have for particular topics/chapter ideas.  Feel free to leave them in a comment or send them to me by email.


I hope you have a great week.

Saturday, January 21, 2023

The Club - Meeting 426 - Shame and Embarrassment

“Man is the only animal that blushes. Or needs to.” – Mark Twain


Hello all. Welcome back to The Disciplinary Couple’s Club.  Our weekly on-line gathering of men and women who are in, or would like to be in, a Domestic Discipline or Female Led Relationship.



I hope you all had a great week. For us, it was another week, another snowstorm.  After a string of very mild winters, this is the kind of winter I remember from a couple of decades ago.  One storm rolls out, the snow finally melts, then another rolls in.  I’m not complaining, though if it keeps up for two or more months I may be.  At least the skiing is great.


Preliminarily for this week, I’d like to thank JR’s wife Dev for dropping by and sharing a story about being asked to spank another woman.  I hope she’ll consider weighing in on other topics that interest her.


Personally, I thought last week’s discussion was kind of fascinating. When I first conceived of the topic, I almost didn’t go with it because I thought it might be too narrow to draw much response.


Instead, it seemed to be not so much narrow, as disconcerting and/or perplexing.  I can’t think of another topic that has caused some regular, thoughtful commenters to have to take a couple of cracks at it.  And, even then, the answers tended to be very nuanced as to whether it would be OK for our wives to spank other men.  While there wasn’t a clear pattern, it seemed to me the answers reflected:


  • the more the commenter saw spanking as inherently and invariable sexual, the more squeamish they were at the thought of their wife spanking another man 
  • unless they had been to spanking parties, in which case they were pretty cavalier about it 
  • some were a bit squeamish but open to it depending on the circumstances
  • those circumstances coming down mainly to either the wife’s reaction (might she get stimulated by it) or to the other man’s reaction (might he get stimulated by it)


For me, I think I would be OK with it, while recognizing that there are some situations where it's very hard to predict your reaction until you are in them.  With that caveat, I think I would be OK with Anne giving another man a real disciplinary spanking, even though I recognize that on some level most (not all, in my opinion) adult spankings have a strong sexual or erotic energy.  I don’t think my reaction would change if either she or the other man were sexually stimulated by it, and I’m pretty sure that I would get aroused by her display of power.


While I think I might feel kind of embarrassed or sympathetic toward the recipient, as Alan related in a story about his wife-to-be spanking another man, I think I also would be proud of and turned on by her in direct proportion to the seriousness of the spanking.


Alan’s reference to feeling embarrassed for someone else reinforced a plan I already had going to do a topic on embarrassment and shame, specifically embarrassment and shame about needing or being in a Domestic Discipline or FLR relationship. 


I started thinking about it as a potential topic based on some comments left in response to the New Years post a couple of weeks ago such as this one"


“Like Alan, I used to be ashamed of my unending need for spankings, but now it is a source of joy and stress relief. Anyway, Hope you are also starting out the New Year with a sore bottom and a relaxed state of mind.” - Norton


Now, I have looked and looked for a comment from Alan to that post regarding being ashamed at needing or wanting disciplinary spankings but couldn’t find one.  I did, however, find this comment from the week before, in response to a comment about how retirement may make us more open about our DD and FLR needs:


“But I think simple age and maturity matter at least as much in making one less concerned about others "knowing". I also am very proud of my wife for taking charge and doing what needed to be done. I also am proud of myself for accepting who I am sexually and submitting to her authority. These are feeling that grew stronger over time. In my late 20's and even into my 30's I was ashamed that I had to be spanked. I don't feel that way any longer.” -Alan


I’m not sure whether that is the comment Norton was referring to, or whether another comment from Alan was lost.  (The way Blogger keeps flagging comments as spam retroactively, I wouldn’t be surprised.In any event, a couple of others also talked about feeling ashamed of their DD needs.



“I often feel ashamed also. Then I feel ashamed because I feel ashamed. (if that makes any sense ). We talked about this yesterday and she assures me there’s nothing to worry about but it still bothers me.” - JR



My wife and I remain very private about DD. I would not want anyone finding out including neighbors. I think it’s still just too taboo. . . . I do remember one time after a punishment session, she gave me a good beating and when done told me to get out of her sight. I pulled my pants up and left the room ashamed and embarrassed.” - T


Since it came up multiple times, it seemed like something worth going into a little more.


The kind of shame and embarrassment the comments made me think about was the kind Alan seemed to be referring to, i.e. shame around the “need” to be spanked, in two senses of the word.  First, there is “need” in terms of a desire to be given disciplinary spankings and to be in a real disciplinary relationship.  Second, there is “need” in terms of requiring some kind of external authority to keep your behavior in line.



I’m not sure I’ve ever felt real shame about domestic discipline spankings or being in an FLR in either of those senses.  I admit I was very nervous when I first brought up the subject with Anne.  It was embarrassing, because it was admittedly so outside the norm and unlike anything I’d asked of her before, but I don’t think I felt “shame” per se.  I was very confused about why I wanted it and was worried she might reject it as too weird or kinky, but I didn’t feel ashamed of the desire itself.


I also don’t think I’ve felt shame about needing the externally imposed boundaries that domestic discipline gives me.  Some time ago, I think it was ZM who said that if someone were to ask why it is that he can’t just exercise some willpower and self-discipline, instead of needing his wife to impose discipline, the simple retort would be that if he could he already would have. 


That’s pretty much how I feel about my own need to be reined in at times.  Throughout most of my career, I could outwork anyone.  Over many years, I’ve killed myself in the gym and denied myself many dietary pleasures to stay pretty fit even now that I’m well into middle-age. There are many areas where I’ve proven I can work and focus and sacrifice as much as anyone.  Yet, there are some areas where I need that extra incentive that DD provides.


I also don’t think I’ve ever felt true shame or embarrassment about DD as a kink.  I don’t tend to be judgmental about others’ kinks, and the corollary is I don’t feel any real shame about my own.


Now, none of that is to say that I wouldn’t have been embarrassed about being “outed” under some circumstances.  I definitely was downright paranoid about it being found out while I was in my profession, though I honestly believe that was way more about being concerned about the possible limiting consequences on certain opportunities than about being ashamed or embarrassed per se.  I also think that my concerns diminished as I got older, and it wasn’t all about retiring or getting close to retirement said. As Alan alluded to, as I’ve gotten older and more mature (relatively), I just don’t care as much about what other people think.


I do think that there might be certain contexts where I might feel something close to real embarrassment, but they are pretty limited.  The best example I can think of is I do have an aversion to parents and siblings finding out, though I don’t know why that particular set of people knowing bothers me.


I also don’t really get embarrassed during an actual spanking session, though sometimes I do feel a sense of vulnerability that probably is something like embarrassment.  The big exception, though it’s so far purely theoretical, is around crying.



When Alan talked about feeling embarrassed for the former boyfriend his future wife spanked in front of him, I think that’s how I felt the first time I read stories on The Disciplinary Wives Club website in which the husbands ended up sobbing.  I felt deeply embarrassed by that scenario and, by extension, how I might feel if it happened to me.  At the time, I had no idea how common or uncommon crying was in DD relationships, and I think I went into many early spankings wondering if that might be the time it would happen.


To this day, I think the primary reason I have never broken down and really cried during a spanking is that the prospect embarrasses me so much.  Which is kind of odd, because it’s not like Anne has never seen me cry. Yet, after all these years there is something I find deeply embarrassing about the prospect of crying during a spanking.



The other situation in which I think embarrassment does play a big role in my relationship with spanking and DD is around asking for it. As I said, when I brought the whole idea to Anne, I definitely was nervous about both how she might react and also what I might really be in for if she agreed to give it a try.  I definitely was cognizant in the moment that it might be one of those "Be careful what you wish for; you might get it" situations.

She did agree to it, and I now have received dozens and dozens of disciplinary spankings and am well aware of what one entails. Yet, I still have a lot resistance to self-reporting and to asking for one even when I know it's fully deserved and part of me really wants it to happen to satisfy that need I have for accountability.  I don't think that resistance is all, or even mostly, about wanting to avoid the spanking.  It's more about being embarrassed about asking for it.  It's kind of odd that 15+ years into this, I probably have more embarrassment around specifically asking for a spanking or reporting something that I know will lead to one (which is really asking for it, just in a different form), than I do about the prospect of others knowing that I do, in fact, get spanked.  

What about you? What role has shame or embarrassment played historically with respect to your spanking and discipline desires? Have you ever been ashamed of wanting or needing to be in a DD or FLR relationship?  Are you ever ashamed of being a grown man who still needs someone else to impose boundaries and provide consequences?  Would you be ashamed at some people knowing but not others?


I hope you all have a great week.

Saturday, January 14, 2023

The Club - Meeting 425 - Wives Spanking Other Men

“Moral indignation is jealousy with a halo.” - H. G. Wells


Hello all. Welcome back to The Disciplinary Couple’s Club.  Our (mostly) weekly on-line gathering of men and women who are in, or would like to be in, a Domestic Discipline relationship.


I hope you all had a good week.  Mine was okay, though I became one of the statistics proving that it takes most people about two weeks to blow through all those New Year's resolutions.  


Though, it’s probably the case that in a justly-designed world, New Year’s resolutions would not take effect until mid-January. It seems to take the holiday season a couple of weeks to fully wind down after January 1st, and my fails last week definitely reflected having family and friends around more than usual.  Oh well . . . time to pick myself up, dust myself off . . . and give 2023 another try.



Another thing that kind of blew last week was Lisa Marie Presley’s death.  He was one of the first musical artists I knew and loved as a kid.  It’s definitely making me feel old that his kid died and was close to my age.  Of course, the passing of celebrities in 2022 drove that message home over and over again. It wasn’t that more celebrities and important sports and political figures died than in any other year. Rather, it just seemed like there were more of them who were personally meaningful to me and played a prominent role in my cultural life.  I suspect it’s something I better get used to.


On that cheery note . . . despite the holiday distractions we got a fair amount of interaction in discussing Donn’s topic asking whether the men here are attracted to domestic discipline because they have a need for it or, rather, because it is useful in some way.  The answers were all over the map and served mainly to emphasize something that a decade with this blog has really driven home for me – human behavior and desire is complicated, and there really is no one prevalent path that leads us to this thing we do.  Although, I do think for most—though not all—there is some sexualized “need” involved.


This week’s topic is tangentially related—probably very tangentially—to the issue of sex and domestic discipline, combined with our seemingly inexhaustible need to discuss “others”, whether those others be witnesses or participants.  I’m really not sure why this topic popped into my head, but it did, so here goes:


If your wife had the opportunity to spank another man, how would you react to that?


I haven’t given a lot of thought to this one, because the opportunity has never arisen, and I’ve never had any particular reason or desire to try to create such an opportunity.   I also wonder whether it's something that other men who are into DD find either threatening or distasteful, because it's not a scenario that appears very often in spanking art and memes.


Yet, in some ways it’s odd I haven’t thought about it much, given the role the Disciplinary Wives Club website played in the formation of my domestic discipline desires.


While a scenario of one wife spanking another’s husband isn’t depicted frequently on the DWC website, it is depicted prominently.  The first two entries under the “Fiction Stories” section involve a wife imposing a domestic discipline spanking relationship on her husband as punishment for him looking too longingly and obviously at a friend’s legs.  After giving him his first disciplinary spanking, she takes him to the friend’s house a few days later so the friend also can spanking.


A few weeks ago, we also talked about the DWC “Real People” story entitled Military Duty Calls,  in which a wife doing a tour of duty leaves her mother in charge of disciplining her husband while she’s away.  It includes a scene in which the mother-in-law discusses the situation with her husband, who not only approves of her surrogate disciplinarian role but ends up getting spanked himself after his wife raises the possibility with him.



The reason I see this as tangentially related to last week’s topic is, for me at least, it raises the question again of just how much are domestic discipline spankings inherently bound up in sex.


In my basic wiring, I’m not nearly as jealous as Anne.  Still, if I were to learn that she was sleeping with another man, I’m sure I would feel jealousy and anger.  That’s how most men would react, right?


Yet, I don’t think I would feel much jealousy about my wife spanking another man.  While I acknowledge that there is erotic energy underlying my own fascination with domestic discipline, it’s an energy that doesn’t seem troubled by the possibility, however remote, that my wife might spank another man.


And, is it so remote?  I think it is pretty unlikely, yet it’s also true that other DD relationships—including Aunt Kay and her husband Jerry (aka “Tomy” to some of you who interacted with him here on this blog or on his) DD relationship—began with attending spanking parties.  And, as the DWC developed into something more like a real club, other wives sent their husbands to Aunt Kay for spankings, and Jerry was sent to other women to be spanked.


So, if your wife had an opportunity to spank another man, what would you think and feel about that?  What would she likely think and feel about it?  If you would be open to it, is that consistent or inconsistent with the extent to which you see disciplinary spankings as being inherently sexual?


I hope you all have a great week.

Saturday, January 7, 2023

The Club Meeting 424 - Needs, wants and usefullness

“Desire is in men a hunger, in women only an appetite.” - Mignon McLaughlin


Hello all. Welcome back to The Disciplinary Couple’s Club.  Our (mostly) weekly on-line gathering of men and women who are in, or would like to be in, a Domestic Discipline relationship.


I hope you all had a good week.  For me, so far so good in terms of no flagrant behavioral breakdowns or resolution breaking.  I shouldn’t be so excited about making it a whopping week, and yet in past years, it hasn’t taken more than that to screw up in some significant way at least once.


Several of us also seem to share some post-Christmas fitness and weight loss goals.  Here's hoping we all meet them.

And, ZM has resolved to stop looking at women’s butts, while I refuse to make any such commitment.



It seems like many of us share a resolution or goal around wanting to crank up the intensity of discipline or FLR, however we each may define “intensity.”  It’s interesting, but in the roughly 11 years that I’ve been running this blog, I can think of maybe one instance in which a commenter said they are in a DD relationship and wished his wife was less demanding, less strict, less consistent, etc. Which is a segue into this captioned resolution photo and into this week's topic.


A couple of weeks ago, during the Q&A session, Donn raised this question, while suggesting it probably was too broad for that session and, instead, merited a full-topic discussion:


“My wife suggested a question (more likely a "subject") that she is interested in learning more about. It is not something that can likely be answered with just a "sentence or two," so it may require an entire week's discussion. This is for the men . . . "Do you believe you have a "need" for Domestic Discipline (DD)? Or rather, is DD "useful" in your relationship, but you could (psychologically) "prosper" and "happily live" your life without it? "All sorts of people have tried to define what are "truly human needs," and many people make a point of contradicting people when they claim something is one of their own personal "needs." We're not interested in anyone else's definition of a "need;" every person has to define for themselves what their own needs truly are (and their decisions should be respected). So, . . . "How do you, personally, know what you feel is a "need" for Domestics Discipline?" Thanks everyone, and have a great New Year!”


I can kick things off and give my answer here within the body of the post.


For me, it’s hard to separate out “need” from “useful,” or “need” from “want.”  Probably because there are multiple meanings of “need,” which can overlap to the point of fully encompassing or being encompassed by concepts like “want” or “useful.”



I have a really hard time distinguishing between “need” and “want” because they are more or less the same thing, different in degree not kind.  In fact, one of the Merriam-Webster definitions of “need” is “an urgent want.”


I have seen one effort at line drawing that I felt was somewhat helpful to me in analyzing why each of us wants this thing we do.  It comes from Jillian Keenan’s book Sex With Shakespeare, in which she discusses her own spanking needs.  She distinguishes between a “kink” and a “fetish” in a way that I think correlates at least loosely, with the difference between a want and a need.  According to Jillian:


“Plenty of vanilla people explore kink as an accessory to sex. The difference is that fetishists explore sex as an accessory to kink. Our fetish is our baseline. It is our first, and most fundamental, need. This is about identities, not activities.”


She goes onto explain that if she had to choose between spanking and sex, she would choose spanking, because in some real sense spanking is her core expression of sexuality.


By that standard, I plainly am someone who has a kinky interest that I want to fulfill, not a fetish that I need to fulfill.  If forced to choose between sex and spanking, sex would win hands down.  Another way of illustrating the difference might be that if Anne ever decided she didn’t want to do Domestic Discipline anymore, I wouldn’t be happy about it but I could easily live without it. It simply isn’t core to my identity in the way it is to some people.


I also have a hard time distinguishing between “need” and “useful” because, again, the definitions aren’t all that separable.  Another Merriam-Webster definition of “need” is “a lack of something requisite, desirable, or useful.” 


I think that definition also brings into play the question of “need” from whose perspective?  I sometimes want a spanking but I often don’t, while my wife would probably say that while I might not want one I desperately need it, in the sense that one is requisite, desirable, useful, or has been fully earned.



Getting past the dictionary definitions down to brass tacks, my answer to whether I have a “need” for DD or, rather, find it useful, it’s not an either/or. Instead, there are really three overlapping answers.


First, in terms of my own desires and needs, I certainly want the lifestyle and at times that wanting has been more or less urgent.  Yet, to use Donn’s words, I could prosper and happily live my life without it. 


Second, there are times that from my perspective I need a spanking in the sense that it is helpful or useful in maintaining boundaries or in “cleaning the slate” after some bad behavior.  My wife would agree that I often “need” it in that sense of it being requisite or what accountability and justice require.


Third, it does serve “useful” purposes for both me, Anne, and the relationship itself.


 That’s about the best I can do.


Also, during the Q&A session, Alan asked about dildos and pegging.  Fortuitously, I saw this meme last week, which seems directly on point.


Have a great week.

Sunday, January 1, 2023

The Club - Meeting 423 - Happy New Year 2023!

“Be at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let every new year find you a better man.” - Benjamin Franklin


Hello all.  Welcome back to the first meeting of the Disciplinary Couples Club for 2023.


As an initial matter, if you haven’t responded to last week’s Q&A post, please do so if you are so inclined.



As for my traditional New Years' kick-off post, well, what a year.  While it ended on some relatively positive notes, for us it got off to a really lousy start.  I began it quarantined with Covid in a foreign country, while our community was dealing with a really horrific event.  The market meltdown that began around October of 2021 extended through the entire year, which put a BIG dent in my plans to retire on investment gains.


Yet, I also feel like the world normalized a little compared to 2020 and 2021. Insurrectionists are going to jail in droves.  Election deniers largely lost their mid-term elections.  Huge verdicts against Alex Jones will, hopefully, give fellow conspiracy theorists some pause.  The Ukrainians reminded us that the world doesn’t have to give in to thugs and autocrats. “I need ammunition, not a ride” and “Russian warship, go fuck yourself” inspired the hell out of me and others.


On a personal level, overall it wasn’t a bad year, other than financially.  Yeah, I got Covid and some of the symptoms lingered for a while, but my life was never in real danger. Our family and friends all got through the year more or less unscathed.  As a friend says whenever I ask him how his family is doing: “Everyone’s alive.  No one’s in jail.”  


On the other hand, I am kind of annoyed with myself that I let 2022 drift.  A lot.  Here are the goals I posted for last year:


  • Solidify the progress I made last year on reducing the number of excessive drinking incidents. 
  • Renew and energize some friendships that I let drift away over the last few years when I was too focused on career.
  • Volunteer on some effort that has a real and substantial impact on the lives of vulnerable or powerless people. 
  • Take at least three long road trips with Anne and the dogs. 
  • Complete drafts of two books I’ve wanted to write for some time but never seem to get around to. 
  • Multiple multi-state motorcycle trips.  
  • Take up some sport or demanding fitness activity that doesn’t take place in a gym. 
  • Reverse the recent losses in our investment portfolio. 

Of those 8 items, I fully completed only one.  A couple of others I sort of partially fulfilled.  Overall, it was a pretty uninspiring performance.  Though, I also do forget sometimes that I didn't have full control over some of these.  Covid did get me off on a poor footing for the new year and it did linger. I just didn't feel well for the first two or three months of the year, which makes hitting goals with real energy hard.  We also had unusually lousy weather throughout the spring and early summer, which was a problem for some of the trips I'd envisioned taking.  Anne was still working during the first half of the year, which meant no big trips together.  And, of course, there wasn't much I could do about the investment portfolio losses given that the whole market took a dump the entire year.


The one area I’d say I made some legitimate headway was in writing. I didn’t get remotely close to the book drafts, but I did start doing some shorter writing projects on another platform, and I did manage to produce a decent amount of content over the course of the year.  I also did get more consistent with maintaining this blog after letting thing slide in 2021.


So, what are my resolutions for 2023?  Basically, to do all those I didn’t make headway on in 2022.  I think there are two big themes I need to keep firmly in my mind.


First, over the last couple of months, I feel like I keep getting hit over the head with messages from the Universe relating to the difficulties men have making or keeping friendships in middle-age.  I need to make renewing and fostering some old friendships a big priority.  It would also be a great thing to make some new friends now that I’m more or less retired, though that seems to be easier said than done. But, that’s OK. Renewing existing friendships will itself take plenty of time and attention.


Second, one of my big misses last year was volunteering.  For some reason, I can’t quite get my heart into it. Yet, I also feel like if there is one thing that might cause me real regret on my deathbed, it would be not helping others enough.  So, I really need to find some cause I can contribute to and feel really passionate about.  Unfortunately, I keep hoping the Universe will give me a nudge in some particular direction, but so far no luck.


One area I feel we DID make some big strides in was on the DD/FLR/kink front.  We definitely had some hiccups along the way, but I feel like this year was perhaps our biggest ever in terms of Anne really embracing her role and taking charge more.  She also was a lot more cavalier about people potentially finding out.  I had been surprised that not all that much changed when we started empty-nesting and I retired, but as it turned out the real key was her retiring.  I think it removed some of the pressure of trying to find time to administer more frequent discipline.  It definitely was key to her new cavalier attitude about others knowing, like spanking me with our window shades open.  She has commented that there was always this anxiety in the background about the possible ramifications of people at work finding out.  Once that was removed, she stopped caring nearly as much about others possibly finding out about this thing we do.



Given that she is taking charge more, one could say that where the Domestic Discipline and FLR aspect of our relationship is concerned, it’s really her resolutions for 2023 that count, not mine.  There are a few areas we’ve talked about, however, that I think may be areas she actually works on in the upcoming year.



First and perhaps most importantly, she does still tend to let me off the hook way too often. One thing we talked about recently is she tends to ask me whether I think a particular bit of less-than-ideal behavior deserves a spanking.  The problem with that approach is, while I may think of all sorts of things that she should spank me for, I change my mind awfully quickly when confronted with the possibility of an immediate spanking.  Given the opportunity, eight times out of ten I’m going to try to talk my way out of one. Therefore, asking my opinion is a problem unless she is very quick to dismiss and override it.


Second, and related to the first, disrespect and disobedience have been long-running problems.  There are way too many times that I dismiss her opinions or do things like rolling my eyes when she’s saying something.  It’s never been clear to me why she’s tended to focus so much attention on things like over-indulging on alcohol that really don’t have much immediate impact on her, yet she lets things like being disrespectful or disobedient slide.



Third, we’ve said for a long time that there really needs to be a lower trigger for a spanking.  If she finds herself feeling annoyed or angry at something, the whole purpose of our DD relationship is to give her a means to address it there and then.


Fourth, lecturing/scolding is something that she did more this year.  And, it didn’t go so well.  My ego had a very hard time dealing with a couple of the more intense scoldings.  Yet, the fact that I did react so negatively a couple of times is an indication that the whole dynamic was becoming both more real and getting at some deeper problems.  While I think it is very hard for both of us, I also think it is very good for both of us and for our dynamic if she verbalizes her concerns much more frequently and follows them up with a spanking.



How about you? Do you have any specific goals or aspirations for the new year, whether related to domestic discipline or more vanilla aspects of your life or relationship?  Anything that you particularly want to achieve?  Any specific bad behaviors you’d like to conquer?  I for one would be very interested in hearing more about the “back to basics” approach that Alan says his wife wants to implement in 2023.


Also, if anyone would like to share, did holiday socializing result in any well-earned spankings?


I hope you have a great 2023. The bar is set awfully low for this to be a better year, but let’s all try to do our part.