Thursday, April 26, 2012

Not Wanting to Push Too Far

Why am I hesitant to change things up and push my Knight's limits a bit? Especially when my goal here is to find his limits in the first place? After my last post I received some great suggestions - including doing something out of the ordinary that I'll enjoy that will push my Knight's limits and put him in a position where he has to voice his opinion.

I've been thinking about this all day. I think my hesitation comes from the simple fact that we are in an FLR at my insistence. My Knight did not come out and ask for this. What he told me was that he would do absolutely anything to same our marriage, and this is what I came up with. I came to the conclusion that FLR was what he wanted and needed by reading our joint journal from start to finish so many times I practically had it memorized. I went through 4 years of discussions, arguments and ramblings to figure out what I was missing-- why we were having the problems that we were. His repeated comments led me to look into D/s arrangements and that's how I found FLR. A couple years ago I suggested to him that it seemed like  he has submissive tendencies and asked if he'd be open to a D/s arrangement. He didn't say no, but went to great lengths to explain that he didn't see his need to fulfill my every wish as submissive. We went round and round  trying to define how he DID see it for about 2 weeks before I dropped it out of frustration. My Knight could not explain it and I didn't have the knowledge to help him.  We continued on the same hamster wheel for a couple years before I brought the subject up again. I came back to it because it seemed like he was doing it anyway. Again, he objected to terminology and I dropped it.  A year ago I came back to it after he told me he would do absolutely anything I asked in order to save our marriage. I was so serious about leaving that I was looking for an apartment for him (I was keeping the house) and had a visitation schedule worked out for him and the kids. (My Knight is a great dad. He just wasn't much of a husband at the time.)

This time I had done my homework and I didn't use the terms dominant or submissive. I used the phrase FLR and his answer was "THAT is exactly what I've wanted all along, babe. For you to be in charge because you do it better than I do."

Okay.. so we've been FLR ever since. And things have been great. No more arguing, no more broken promises, seriously reduced my stress level. He's finally doing what I've always wanted him to do. I'm happier, he's happier and the kids are happier. It's a good thing.

But, the thing is that I know he only agreed to FLR to stay out of divorce court.

Or did he? Could it be that FLR really is what he's wanted all along but he was afraid to admit it until we wer e on the verge of divorce court?  I don't want to push him into something he doesn't want.  I ask him regularly if he's happy with the way things are going, if there is anything he'd like to change, or add, or improve or subtract from our arrangement. His answer is always the same... he's happy with the way things are, for the most part. Sometimes he says he's not clear on what I want from him. Those are usually the times when I'm stressed or super busy and not being much of a leader.

It occurred to me this morning that maybe he can't tell me what he wants as far as FLR limits because he really doesn't know. Could it be that even though he does have a submissive personality that he's never given it any real thought, and so doesn't know what he wants? Maybe I really do need to start pushing his limits so that we can actually find his limits?

I am usually very self-aware. I give a lot of thought to what I want, what I need and how to go about getting those things. I've taught/am teaching our kids to do the same because you can't reach your dreams if you don't know what your dreams are.  My Knight has trouble identifying his feelings a good part of the time. Mostly because he's very action focused.   Could it be that he is so focused on his self defined role of making me happy that he's given no thought at all to what he wants and what makes him happy?

Maybe I need to start having him experiment with things in order to find the answers I'm looking for.

12 comments:

  1. Mistress Angelique,

    I believe you are suggesting that although your husband has shown signs of deferring to your authority through your relationship and also in his past with other women, he is not an overt submissive. He is ‘trying’ a WLM D/s construct to appease some relationship difficulties, but you fear he is secretly harboring discontent, which is why he is being elusive to your direct request.

    Further, you fear if this is left unchecked, the situation will worsen instead of get better, as his patience begins to wear thin.

    Hummm…

    I can speak to the difficulties of finding free time while raising a family. We have two children and both my wife and I work full time. I do domestic chores (cleaning, laundry / ironing, cooking) while my wife enjoys her leisure time and the spending of household disposable income as she finds suits her liking. This is how it is for us. It is wonderful and I do with you two able to enjoy it similarly.

    Transition is almost always difficult. Although your husband may be inclined to accept a submissive role, the prevailing egalitarian standard being imposed on him by societal standards will most likely make him feel the need to ‘stand-up’ for himself. This egalitarian standard is amazingly pervasive when having been lived for decades by a person. To think they will just be replaced overnight is just not realistic. Human beings take a long time to change patterns that have been so ingrained into their consciousness.

    I personally, think you two have taken a big step at jointly agreeing to practice a D/s style of relationship. Ingraining a D/s pattern takes time. If I may make a suggestion or two that were found helpful to my wife and me;

    1) If you eat a family meal routinely (either each night, or on the weekends), you alone sit at the head of the table. Your husband prepare the meal and sit to your side. This will allow the family to see a change and begin to accept the new pattern. Your husband too will be forced to acknowledge the change as a result. After all, he has given you permission to make such decisions. After a space of time, everyone will come to see it as what is expected. My boys know who leads our household. I am still respected as a parent though, even though I do not sit at the head of the table for family meals.

    2) When you go out to eat, you pick up and pay for the meal. This is again a display of who is leading. You will be surprised how many women do so in restaurants. Servers do not expect men to pay for meals any more. Instead they look for indication who will want to receive the bill. It is amazingly common for this to now be the women.

    3) ask him to expect you to plan family free time. Let him know his opnion will be sought when you want, but otherwise, you will let him know what to expect. I found the planning of free time was the principle way egalitarianism was practiced in our relationship. Once, this was removed from daily conversations, there was a big shift in my outlook. This is no small change. Discussing and negotiating how free time will be spent was, as a percentage, the largest amount of conversation we had. When my wife instead simply made these decisions and let me know when I needed to know what I was going to be doing, there was a big change in our relationship and from there the D/s grew much more natural in other daily encounters.

    4) Find a way to practice sexual disparity with your husband. Try to focus your intimate times on you enjoying yourself, with him having sexual gratification less frequently. This is a very large change and may well take months to put into practice, but is also a very big way men can learn to appreciate their submissive role.

    Again, these are just suggestions for your consideration.

    Hope you two learn to find a new path to enjoy your lives together. I agree with you that a D/s approach is a method which will make daily life so much more enjoyable for both partners. I hope you two can find a way that works for you.

    ;-}

    Sincerely,

    -SH

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  2. ...Oh, and one more thing. Perhaps getting a lifestyle 'collar' is a good idea. it would be a visible sign that he is the submissive and something that he will begin to wear with pride. They come in all kinds of styles and most appear simply as a necklace to outsiders. I wear a thin chain rather tightly around my neck. The symbolism is that I have been collared and hold the role of submissive in a D/s relationship, not unlike the bond a wedding ring symbolizes. You could go with something like one of the below. They come with a locking option (which is preferred) or w/o a lock. You could also simply get a tight fitting necklace at a jewelry store that would serve the same purpose. There is something about wearing this that is a helpful reminder.

    LINKS:
    http://www.dragonweave.com/locking-chainmail-jewelry.html

    http://www.ringofsteel.net/productlist.html

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    Replies
    1. I think a collar of sorts is a great idea. I gave him a choice.. a celtic knot necklace of my choosing or a ring of my choosing. My Knight chose the ring and I agree with that choice. I've decided he'll wear it on his left ring finger. Since we didn't exchange rings when we got married, it makes sense for his submissive ring to be worn as a wedding ring, while my wedding ring finger is bare. It signifies he belongs to me, while I my do as I please. I'm shopping today.

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    2. Mistress Angelique,

      That is a great idea and I am glad you two seem to have worked it out. If I may make a suggestion, perhaps a ceremony of sorts to mark the occasion is called for once the ring arrives. Maybe even draw up a "contract" with signature spots to be signed too. This will reform the 'marriage' into one of your choosing and the ring will then be a binding symbol of that agreement.

      My wife and I did so. After we went out to eat and we made love when we got home that evening. I always felt it consummated the agreement. I feel as though doing so was a spiritually binding exercise and have felt the effect carry though into each passing day.

      -SH

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    3. …our contact had two sections. One was her’s where she read her obligations and my section was mine. We both read our sections aloud and then signed it. It was then burned.

      She was obligated to pursue her interests and seek enjoyment in whatever form it may take, and use my service to her in these pursuits. I was obligated to find my life’s fulfillment in my service to her, recognizing that her pleasure was paramount in the relationship. There was more to it then that, but it was generally what we were each required to fulfill in our respective obligations.

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    4. I wrote our contract before we started FLR last August. We both agreed to and signed it after a 1 month trial run, so in September. I might have the months wrong, but that sounds close. We didn't burn ours. We uploaded it to our private server so that we could both refer to our agreement as needed. I designed a ceremony for the contract ceremony and it became a renewal of our wedding vows. Signing the contract felt like a spiritual event... like we got remarried.

      I'm going to do something similar when I present my Knight with his ring.

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  3. Just now found your blog and really enjoyed reading through it. You know, I believe most men are a little confused about what they want in life. There is often a difference between what a man wants at some partiular moment, and what he truly needs to be happy in a long term relationship. On one level a submissve man needs the accpetance of his wife. That usually means seeing her as an authority figure. And yes, I agree with S-H, every man should have a collar of some type. If possible, it should be one that locks. A locked collar becomes a physical reminder of your atuhority over him.
    One of the wonderful things about submissve men is that they like to please.

    Love, Kathy

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    1. Thank Kathy. This is an interesting journey for me. I spent my younger years unsuccessfully trying to control my natural tendency to lead and manage in my relationships. Letting of that automatic self-censoring is a challenge for me. I am always learning and I've found this people here incredibly helpful.

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  4. Mistress Kathy,

    Thank you for chiming in. I was feeling a bit under water with the topic and it seemed as though Mistress Angelique wanted a response. You are much better to speck to this then I.

    Sincerely,

    -SH

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    1. SH - I do appreciate your input here. I am still learning how submissive men in general, and specifically my Knight, think. Input from the guys here is helpful to me. Thanks!

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  5. Angelique,
    If a collar is a bit too much of step for your husband, maybe a ring on his finger might be more appropriate for the time. I wear a ring on my right-ring finger. Katie expects me to wear it. It is my ring of submission. It is the ring that is my reminder that she is in charge.

    I remember when we first walked this road that she told me she would like me to shave my balls. I did. Why? Because I knew that she would be happy. Later, she told me to shave all of my pubic hair. That was a big step for me but I did it because she wanted me to and told me that was what she expected.... she used a bit stronger language. Sometime later my ass became part of the deal as well. Now, over a year later, I don't even thing twice about it. I do it because I belong to her. Shes the boss. She's the one who my life is now focused on.

    You may find that if there are 'fun' things that you can do to help him see that he is indeed submissive, you may want to do small things - in phases - to help him see that he really is a submissive male.

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    1. You always seem to have great ideas. I decided on a ring on Friday. Today, I'm shopping for it and planning how I will give my Knight his new ring.

      And I think you're right. It's time for me to start instituting new (small) rules that daily remind my Knight that I am in charge.

      He told me recently that he thinks I can get him to do absolutely anything. It's time to start using that.

      Thank you for your suggestions.

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