Saturday, August 26, 2023

The Club - Meeting 450 - DD's Role in Meeting Personal Performance, Fitness, Resilience, Etc.

"If I had got you when you were young you would have been a brain surgeon." – Aunt Kay to her husband Jerry


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 relationship.


I hope you had a good week.  Mine was both fulfilling and frustrating.  As I alluded to last week, I was out and off-grid for much of the week.  Some might call it living up to my mid-life crisis.  Without going into a lot of detail, it involved doing stupid things on my motorcycles with a bunch of men, most of them at the age they may be going through similar mid-life crises.


I took away a lot of good things from it.  One being that men really can be incredibly supportive of other men when they get away from their conditioned roles and face similar challenges in a deliberately non-competitive atmosphere.  It kind of makes me understand how books about manhood and male-oriented support groups have become a thing.  I hope that maybe we have a little of that going here on this blog.


However, some aspects were not so great.  There was an inherent element of danger in it.


Though, nothing really life-threatening, I did have a couple of moments where I (and, in fairness, others) bailed out on some optional training activities that I was concerned I just couldn’t do. Then, some of us encountered an unplanned obstacle that quickly revealed our varying skill levels. And, also, our varying tolerance for risk.


I’m embarrassed to say, my risk-tolerance wasn’t what I wish it had been.  Like I said, there was some inherent danger involved. But, we’re talking broken bone levels of danger at most.  Really serious, permanent injury kinds of outcomes were unlikely.  


Yet, kind of like the incident I described on the mountain, I pulled away from the risk.  The going got tough and, when provided with an “out,” I took it.  I’m still a little pissed at myself for it.


What does this have to do with domestic discipline?  Well, like my mountain climbing story from a couple of weeks ago, not all that much.  At least directly. But, indirectly, maybe some.  It made me question a few things about my current direction.


While part of my withdrawal was about risk, an equal or larger factor was I was bumping up against some physical limitations.  I was feeling way more tired and winded than I should have.  Perhaps I was doing OK for a guy "my age," but I hate, hate, hate that qualifier.


While the activity was physically hard, I think I would have handled it better a year ago. I came out of the pandemic in better shape than I had been in in years, but this year I frittered some of those health, strength, and resilience gains away. It showed on the side of a mountain a couple of weeks ago and it showed on a difficult ride this week.  Had I taken better care of myself and pushed myself harder over the last year, I might have fared better.



It also occurred to me that what I was really afraid of that caused me to back away from this particular challenge wasn’t so much physical injury as ego.  I was afraid to try and fail, somehow not quite getting that my ego was going to take an even bigger from failing by not trying.


I think I do that more often than I like to admit. Sometimes it’s ego. Sometimes it’s laziness.  Or, lack of positive stubbornness.  I don’t try certain challenging things, because I might fail. 


Or, I quit those things before I’m at my real physical or mental limit. 


Or, I try to talk my way out of a well-deserved spanking that I know I’ve earned and that I know might lead to some incremental self-improvement, because it's just mentally preferable in that moment to take the easier way out if that door seems open.


Or, I don’t let go and cry during a spanking because it would involve an ego hit, even though I know the personal growth I'd achieve could be huge.


I’m not sure whether DD has a role in helping with this kind of stuff.  On the risk-taking thing, probably not.  Anne is way more risk averse than I, so it’s not reasonable to expect she would do anything to encourage me to take more risks than I already do.


 But, on things like letting my physical fitness lapse, she could play a role if she wanted.


Moreover, the back-sliding on health and fitness issues was one aspect of a year that has been a disappointment on multiple fronts as compared to the year before.  


Honestly, I’ve just been kind of a slug this year, in lots of areas.  


Last year, I was working out more, writing more, exploring new interests more.   


This year, for some reason, things started to go off course around the holidays and I just got kind of lazy.


I do think DD can play a role in addressing that kind of stuff, but for us it really hasn’t. 


I talked to Aunt Kay’s husband about this a bit by email. He reminded me about the quote at the top of this post, which I’ve used here before.  He also advised this:



“One suggestion is to write her a note or, alternatively, as I have recommended in the past to some other husbands, excerpt exactly what you just unselfconsciously wrote to me and let her know these are your unfiltered thoughts.”


I explained to him that in the past I’ve consciously steered clear of asking Anne to play that kind of “coaching” role in which she takes charge of things that don’t really affect our relationship but where I might benefit from some imposed discipline.



I always felt like it would be kind of a burden.  And, we already had consistency issues around things that we both agreed should be punishable and that did have relationship implications.  It seemed like making her responsible for things like me making bad eating and drinking choices and avoiding the gym would exacerbate those consistency issues.


However, the fact is, things have changed for both of us in the last couple of years.  She now has more time on her hands.  She’s also more fully embraced her DD role and some of its more “maternal” manifestations. And, I do fee like there is something very maternal/parental in setting standards around personal performance and holding someone subordinate to you responsible for them. It’s why getting spanked for bad grades was so prevalent when I was growing up.



Also, recently, I have felt like she is almost looking for more reasons to spank and that she sometimes seems almost disappointed if I haven’t earned one recently. Maybe she would actually want to take on something that involves, at her discretion, addressing performance issues in areas that kind of do affect her indirectly, like staying healthy? 



And, it’s not just health and fitness where, heaven knows, I could use some improvement. There is procrastination and letting little problems become big ones.  This morning, she reminded me that I need to cancel a credit card by tomorrow to avoid an auto-renewal. It was the second or third time she had reminded me about it.   

This time, her tone was more serious. She didn’t expressly threaten a spanking, though perhaps she should have just given one.  It probably would have made me think twice about procrastinating next time she asks me to do something. 


In the end, I don’t want me to be this guy, and I don’t think she wants that for me either:



The Domestic Discipline that most of us practice seems to focus primarily on consequences for “bad” behavior, often behavior that is hurtful or annoying to our spouse or to others.  But, what about more goal-oriented behavioral modification?


There could be any number of such goals or desires, including”


·      losing weight

·      running a 10k or competing in a triathalon

·      starting a business or side hustle

·      meeting a sales or business development goal at work

·      getting a promotion

·      putting a personal budget in place and sticking to it

·      writing a novel

·      learning a musical instrument


It could even work on some bigger challenges and more subjective things like mental resilience.  In my case, what if I picked a less technical mountain climb than the one I attempted last week? One that was more about just gutting it out and pushing one’s body to the limit.  What if Anne told me that a consequence of turning around before the top, absent an injury other serious problem, would be a hard spanking?  Would that help me avoid taking the easy way out when encountering real difficulty?


What thoughts do you guys have about this? What role does DD play in things like hitting personal goals, staying fit and healthy, or in facing up to challenging situations? What role would you like it to play?  If you have used DD in this context, were the areas for improvement ones you identified, or were they things she came up with herself? 

While we don’t have any regular female commenters these days, I’ll take HP’s advice from last week and make the invitation for them to comment more explicit. For the wives, are there areas in which you have provided your husband with some disciplinary “motivation” to achieve a goal or make a change that he was struggling with?  


Is that something you would do if you thought he needed it or if he asked? Would it be more of a burden than you’re interested in taking on? Or, would you get a benefit from either exercising your authority in that context or indirectly from improving his performance in areas like personal effort and goal-achievement?  Would you enjoy the authority that comes with such an empowered mentoring role?



Also, guys, I realize there have been a couple of recent topic suggestions. I thought about working them into this one, but it’s so hard to come up with new topics sometimes, I decided to keep them in reserve and use them in a week or two.


Have a great week.

Sunday, August 13, 2023

The Club - Meeting 449 - Moods, Mindset, and Are You Being Spanked for What She Thinks She is Spanking You For?

“It is only when we are no longer in control--because of sickness, death, or our own bad choices--that we no longer cling. The path to salvation is the path of humiliation.” – Jonathan Martin


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 relationship.


I hope you had a great week.  Ours was kind of good, and kind of grueling.  That’s the way it is when you’re an introvert with extended family in town.  We hung out with people we love and care for, did lots of stuff, saw some nice sights and, yet, we both were happy to have our house back for a quiet night alone, with a book in front of the television.


This was also a week where I could sense the subtle change of the seasons, regardless of what the calendar says.  There were a couple of mornings walking the dogs when I felt something distinctly autumn in the air.  Football season also has clearly started and is capturing the attention of many in our area, though I came across this meme, which has to be one of the most hilariously emasculating I've ever seen:


We had a good conversation last time, on what I had been concerned might be too limiting a topic.  I found most interesting the posts that connected the issue of spanking frequency/consistency with the emotions involved in being taken out of your comfort zone and into a zone where your control is much diminished.  Here are two examples:


“A daily spanking would happen before I was ready for the next one. By asking to be spanked often, I was putting myself in conflict with a base need to be spanked exactly as often as I desired.” – MW


“The thing that I like about "on the spot" spankings Dan, is that they rock my world. I don't expect the spanking and I am suddenly in a really uncomfortable situation. She is in control and suddenly I am not. Very confronting but also very like school (see below).” – Mark

 I identify closely with MW’s comment in particular.  Whether it’s how often spankings happen or the reasons for them, on those occasions when I feel unsettled, disquieted, or resentful, at the root of that feeling is a conflict between my ego’s desire for things to happen exactly as I desire or envision, on the one hand, and how or why she has determined they actually are going to happen, on the other.   

 Alan made a similar point, relating back to my response to MW:


“Dan writes: “When I’ve hit some emotional threshold in DD, it has tended to be when a spanking was much harder or longer than I thought was deserved or when a lecture really cut me to the core. Yes, in those circumstances, I did feel resentful on some level, but I also felt disquieted because something was imposed on me that I didn’t agree with, yet it happened anyway.”


“I experience some of this more when she slowly, almost arrogantly, takes my pants down knowing I am psychologically unable to resist it and when they are down, I have been trained they don’t go back up again without explicit permission. That shook me deeply the first time it happened. That was with my former girlfriend, and it took a couple of days until I calmed down and realized it was really what I wanted and just shocked that it had happened.


“When spanking reaches the point you are describing I am usually past any resentment and close to that hopeless feeling that she might not ever stop. I know that’s an illusion but it seems very real at the time, and that is what leads to crying when crying happens. I don’t mean to play Dr. Freud but the resentment you feel might be preventing you from crying at that point in a spanking. I am known as a stubborn guy that doesn’t give up, but I think I have met my match in you.” – Alan


As I told Alan in response, I don’t think it’s resentment that keeps me from crying, but I definitely think it is a form of stubbornness, namely a stubborn refusal to give up that last vestige of control.


I also had my own lesson last week that not being spanked more frequently does have its downsides. It’s a lesson I’ve learned many times before yet somehow always seem to forget.


Anne decided I was going to get spanked for something that I personally thought was at worst trivial and, in reality, something she was just plain wrong about.  Not so much wrong on the facts, but wrong about whether what happened really was a problem. It was, once again, a social situation that involved me expressing a strong opinion, but this time I maintain that I was right, that the opinion had been invited, and that it didn’t result in any negative reaction from anyone.


Honestly, I’m not sure Anne really disagreed with me on any of that.  Her stated justification was pretty weak and she clearly wasn’t upset about it. Rather, she had decided she should spank me for it, so she was going to, even though her stated justifications didn’t hold up to scrutiny very well. One might even speculate she just thought it was time for one . . .

Sensing that her resolve might not be terribly strong, I argued, cajoled, charmed and, basically, did everything I could to try to avoid or at least delay.  Up until the last minute, I thought I might get out of it. Alas, no.  Over her knee I went. 


As usually, she started with her bath brush.  From the very first strike, it was excruciating.  I was yelping and groaning hard from the outset, to the point that, while she was hardly merciful, she did make it somewhat shorter than usual (probably around 125 swats). She also reduced the force somewhat at the end.  Neither of those reductions are typical for her. As I’ve said before, she’s generally very “binary” in her approach; it’s usually fully on or off. 


She immediately connected my reaction to the issue of frequency/consistency, commenting, "Well, I guess I really haven't been doing my job if this is how you react to a simple spanking.  I clearly need to be doing it more often."  


I think there was a three-fold reason why it hurt so much:


(1) It had, in fact, been at least six weeks, and maybe more, since my last spanking.  Apparently, that's all it takes for my butt to retreat to a state that's much like its pre-DD, unspanked condition.

(2) I had done a heavy leg workout that morning and, thus, my glutes were tight and already sore.

(3) I just wasn't "in the mood."  Of course, I'm never in the mood for a spanking when it’s about to happen.  However, usually there is some substantial delay between the sentence and its execution, leaving me time to process what is going to happen and accepting its “rightness” on some level. This time, however, I never did accept that she was right about the wrongness of the conduct and, therefore, I had zero sense of accountability.  Also, because I had tried to talk my way out of it right up until the start of the spanking, I denied myself that period of contemplation that usually results in acceptance.


Once I realized it really was going to happen, I tried to address the mindset by telling myself even if I didn’t accept her reason for why it was going to happen, the truth was there had been a couple of other recent issues that had gone unpunished and that I did agree I should have been spanked for. However, that didn’t really seem to work.


Which brings us to one item for discussion this week, though I’m not sure it’s broad enough for a full topic:  Have you ever gotten a spanking for one thing, while in your wife’s mind she was spanking you for something else? In other words, have there been times you’ve been punished and maybe you didn’t expressly agree on what exactly you were being punished for, though both of you thought you deserved punishment for something? If so, how did it feel different, if at all, from the times when you were both on the same page?


We also talked a bit last week about moodiness. TG brought it up in terms of an area he wish his wife would address more frequently:


“The one area I really want to break is mood. On occasion I get into a bad or snappy mood without any real justification and I wish I could get her to deal with this quickly and firmly. I suspect I’d be getting a real punishment every two or three months in that case - although I suspect the behavior modification encouragement would work and the frequency would reduce.” -TG


I wondered aloud whether DD was likely to work on something like our moods, which often seem out of our own control.  Alan answered thusly:


“Yes definitely if the mood does not reflect deeper depression which of course calls for professional medical care. But if its transient-like , and if a wife is skillful in handling it, a spanking or even a credible threat of a spanking can make moodiness vanish --poof, gone.” – Alan


Let’s broaden those comments into a topic focusing on moods. Does your wife ever punish or discipline you for moodiness?  If so, please give us some examples. Does it generally work?



Recognizing that few of us are probably ever truly “in the mood” for a punishment spanking right before it happens, are there times when your mood is particularly at odds with accepting and taking that spanking that you really don’t want?  Does your wife ever delay or take it easier because of your mood?  Or, does the spanking actually fix the mood, such that delaying or foregoing would be exactly the wrong way to approach your mood issue?


How about your wife’s moods? How do they affect her determination to spank you or her approach to doing so? Does her mood determine the severity or timing of a spanking?

In the comments last week, multiple peopled tied the issue of frequency to spanking in anger, observing that they wish their wives spanked more frequently right after an offense, when they are still angry.  Does your wife typically spank when her mood is anger, or does she wait until she has calmed down?


I hope you all have a great week.  FYI, I’m going to be tied up from Friday through the first part of next week, with several periods when I won’t be online.  So, there probably won’t be a new topic next week.

Sunday, August 6, 2023

The Club - Meeting 448 - Frequency and Consistency

“It's not what we do once in a while that shapes our lives. It's what we do consistently.” – Tony Robbins


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 relationship. 


I hope you all had a great week.  Mine was kind of weird. Some things went on that were related to Domestic Discipline but kind of indirectly. There were some things that were not DD related but that I saw through a DD lens.  And, there was a general sense that our forward momentum on DD once again kind of sputtered out and that it’s not really advantageous for either one of us.


On the first, I ended up in a tiff with someone who used to be a commenter here. I won’t go into details, but it centered on some of the old Disciplinary Wives Club materials and who has the right to use them.  The bottomline for me is, unless and until he says differently, Aunt Kay’s husband gets to determine what happens with those materials and no one has a right to use them without permission. The other person didn’t see it that way, and dealing with some things he had imprudently done ended up consuming hours of time.  Have you had people in your life who maybe don’t have ill-intent but also have such poor judgment and impulse control that, at their best, a relationship with them consumes more time than it can ever possibly be worth?



The second thing that set this week apart from ordinary weeks was a physical challenge I set for myself, namely climbing a very tall mountain.  I do a fair amount of hiking, but I’m not an experienced mountaineer by any means.  A couple of years ago, after coming off of a joint replacement and having something to prove, I set out to summit my first 14,000 ft. peak.  I succeeded, though only by pushing so far past my perceived limits that it really had a pretty profound mental impact that lasted for weeks. 


The peak I tried this week was actually not as high.  Having done a taller peak, I thought this one would be easier.  Yet, I quit before summiting.  I hit a technical section that was steep and filled with loose rocks.  I got in my own head about the fact that I was climbing alone and could get hurt and be unable to get back down on my own.  I also considered how long it was taking me to traverse this large rock field and became worried about summer lightning storms coming in about the time I reached the top. And, I hate to admit it, but it also became clear that I really have let my conditioning slip this year. 


So, telling myself that “discretion is the better part of valor,” I headed back down.

None of that has much to do with DD, at least not directly.  Yet, I did process some of it through a DD filter. It occurred to me that while I had the option to quit on the mountain and did so, it never seems to feel that way during a spanking.  Theoretically, in the back of my mind, I know that I could resist being taken past my perceived limits, yet that has never really happened.


It has a lot to do with the topic of inevitability that we talked about a few weeks ago and/or about being taken out of the context where you feel yourself to be in control.  When I did the mountain two years ago, going up was hard, but that part was mostly about physical conditioning.  I just gutted it out.  It was the opposite of being taken out of my “control zone.” It was about exercising my own will to get through something hard. 


Coming down, however, was another matter.  I was in agony by the time I was half-way down, but it wasn’t like a sherpa was going to come along and carry me down on his back. I literally had no choice but to keep going, and I had to keep going way, way longer than I felt I had the physical capacity to do.  It was a very disquieting experience. I’ve used this captioned meme a few times, but I think it really encapsulates something important about the mental and emotional process involved in taking something you really, really wish were not happening:



On this second mountain, it was grueling coming down but not to the same extent, and my emotional reaction to it was dampened.  Again, I processed that through a DD filter.  When I’ve hit some emotional threshold in DD, it has tended to be when a spanking was much harder or longer than I thought was deserved or when a lecture really cut me to the core. Yes, in those circumstances I did feel resentful on some level, but I also felt disquieted because something was imposed on me that I didn’t agree with, yet it happened anyway. This time, I was still within my “control zone,” so I had a much lesser emotional reaction, which is kind of a disappointment in and of itself.


On a more pedestrian, less philosophical level, while the source of my failure to summit this time was largely mental, it also seemed like I just wasn’t as physically fit as I was two years ago, which is to a large part about the fact that I haven’t been as disciplined this year as I should have been about getting into the gym and pushing myself physically, which is, in turn, reflective of a general downturn in my self-discipline as compared to last year.


Finally, it was a week in which a couple of other instances of bad behavior were on display, and Anne has said I will be spanked.  I know I need to be, yet I find myself mentally resistant.  That’s natural of course, given how hard she spanks.   


Yet, I think it’s more about the fact that it’s been at least a month and probably more since my last one. Because I'm not going through it regularly, each one seems like a very big deal. 

Aunt Kay said, "A spanking should be an event to remember." But, should every spanking be?  

When spankings don’t happen all that often, each of them is an “event,” and that has its own consequences.  TB made a somewhat similar point last week


What we are working on now is consistency, speed of (her) reaction, avoiding any disputes and her verbally highlighting when I am close to a behavioral boundary. This is definitely working for both of us as is a more frequent and more 'casual' spanking regime. We discuss any previous day's issues first thing in the morning and she will punish at that point. As we have guests currently that means a session with the synthetic cane, my least 'favorite' implement. We have not had an argument for some time now as she seems to have learned to channel any such feeling into either a warning or a spanking. However, there have been more than the usual amount of spankings...


The more 'casual' approach means that for her a spanking is less of an 'event' and more of a minor correction. She seems more comfortable initiating a spanking which is probably why it is happening more frequently. – TB


Frequency does seem to be especially important when dealing with deeply-rotted habits.  As MW said a few weeks ago:


“I found that when I was spanked frequently (daily or nearly daily) for the same problem, the memory of the pain, the soreness, and the little twinge in the butt would remind me to do the right thing. For one persistent problem I would actually feel desperate and a little fearful and work harder at it. It was a wonderful feeling after years of making no progress on it.”



MW’s comment illustrates that more frequency does not necessarily mean the whole thing becomes kind of “old hat.”  Instead, knowing that you truly are not going to get away something may heighten your anxiety about it, leading to that “healthy fear” that for some of us is a byproduct of our wives becoming more and more consistent.


During the times when she is spanking me more frequenty, I don’t necessarily feel “better,” in terms of settling into any sort of comfortable routine.  In fact, it’s kind of the opposite.  Part of me knows I need it, to the point that I actually request more frequency and consistency.  Yet, the part of me that is very comfortable maintaining my “control zone” actively resents being less able to get out of a deserved spanking and having my control over my own actions curtailed more effectively.



In that sense, more frequency inevitably ends up with me feeling like I’m less in control and like the discipline is being imposed whether I agree with it or not. 



Also, paradoxically, while spanking more frequently may seem like it would be burdensome, one of the reasons habits are so powerful is they don’t require as much mental energy as constantly considering whether to do or not do a particular action.  A friend I made several years ago through this blog and who is on the other end of the paddle put it this way on herblog:


“While I feared increased control or strictness could breed resentment, it has the opposite effect.  He needs the structure and the clarity. He needs the consistency and knowing what is expected. I also think, although probably less so in the moment, that he craves the accountability as well.  Being in this type of relationship really requires some shifts in conventional thinking and finding ways to make sense of concepts that perhaps seem counter intuitive.  It is the difference between viewing follow-up as being a nag or as holding him accountable.


It also is not just better for him. It is better for me.  It is easier for me to know that when I make a decision, it will be followed because I am not leaving room for resistance. It is also easier because I have control over my own life and can be responsible for the choices I make, which also means I have no one to blame but myself if it turns out not to be the best choice.  It is just simpler and easier.”


These were some of thoughts I was having this week, after more or less determining in my own mind that things were working better for both of us a few months ago when she was spanking me more often. It was nowhere close to daily, but a few months there it became a rare week that I wouldn’t get spanked at least once.



Although we’ve done the topic of “frequency” before, it’s been a while.  So, let’s explore it from several different angles, including:

  • How often do you get spankings that are for real discipline or punishment?  How many times a year do you estimate you get such spankings?
  •  Given whatever your or her behavioral and relationship goals for you may be, is the frequency of your spankings too little? Too much?  Just right? 
  • How does frequency relate to severity and duration?  If you are getting spanked frequently, does that mean individual spankings are short and less severe than a very serious spanking delivered every once in a while?  
  • How closely is spanking frequency tied to misbehavior frequency and/or the seriousness of your misbehavior?  If you seem to be going outside the boundaries more often, does she ramp of the frequency for a while and then return to some lesser baseline?  
  • We’ve talked from time to time about the impediments to frequency and consistency, like having kids around, visitors, and other distractions. But, what about the positive question: if you have gotten to a frequency/consistency level that works for you both, were there particular changes or developments that got you there
  • Does your wife find frequency and consistency to be a burden, or is it mentally/emotionally freeing to impose a rule and stick to it? 
  • Other thoughts about frequency?


I hope you all have a great week.