Thursday, March 25, 2010

Explaining myself

After this past weekend, we've had some conversations. Part of the upshot for me was that, in a few things that were important to me, his way of responding seemed to me to be back to our old ways, not the ways we had been learning and getting better at. Part of it for me, unfortunately, is my assumptions. I assume he knows how I feel about things, how I respond, what has what kind of effect on me; never mind the fact that I haven't actually told him most of these things. I also, I think, fall into the trap of having an idea of how things "should work", something I create in my imagination, fueled by too much reading and too much imagining.

But the slide into our previous patterns led me to think that perhaps he either didn't really want to be involved in any sort of power exchange/dominant/submissive/ttwd relationship at all. [Yes, in spite of being typically nearly perfect, every once in awhile I have a bout of overly dramatic self doubt and insecurity] Specifically, I wondered if he was uncomfortable with thinking of me as "submissive." The word doesn't have the most positive connotations in the more general, everyday sense. Did it make him think I am not the person he has known, that I am or want to be less - less intelligent, less useful, less engaged, less thoughtful, less strong?

His response,after a good deal of thought, was that he doesn't want any part of something in which he (or any one else) diminishes in their respect for me. That he knows there are some areas I am more suited for than he - and it is silly for him to take over those things. And that he doesn't feel any compulsion to lessen me, that what he really feels compelled to do is to take care of me.

I know it doesn't have to be these things. First of all, it wouldn't work for us that way - we just couldn't, so it won't happen, whether anyone would argue it should or not. I also believe that we can use the advantages the dynamic has to offer, expand and nurture some aspects to my personality that I had never realized, and, I think, utilize his strengths more fully - all while being true to ourselves.

So I am trying to explain myself to him. This is very hard because I am learning myself all over again. There is a lot about myself that I don't understand. A lot of reactions, responses, thoughts, feelings, obsessions, and changes in personality that take me by complete surprise. It sounds incredibly simplistic to say "subs are this way; it's best to do x,y,and z, with them; they will respond to...." But instinct tells me that, as much as I am an individual, and we are certainly uniquely us, there are probably some common traits, patterns, ways of thinking maybe that might be helpful to be aware of.

Someone has suggested to me that it would be good for my husband to read about or discuss with others how submissives are, so that he will know what to expect, how I will respond, what I need, etc... I agree, and I don't. I do think it would make it easier for him (and me) for some of my strange reactions and behaviours to be less shocking to him, for him to have ideas about how to help me realize things, to maybe avoid some the misunderstanding. Ideas or inspiration are good, not re-creating the wheel is good, learning from others' mistakes is good. On the other hand, I know he doesn't want to be or follow anyone else, and I don't want to be anyone but what he wants. I think that, somehow between the two, there must be a balance point.

In the mean time - I will keep trying to explain myself to him.


  1. gee if your husband should find such a person I would like to talk to him/her too.

  2. wow gg! this is like reading my own thoughts! We've gone through a very similar stage recently- i promise you there is another side to reach! D has instigated a new rule for us where i'm not allowed to forward Him stuff anymore and He no longer reads my journal daily but there is an understanding that He will make time for a bit of 'research' regularly- but it's not up to me what or when. Don't know if that helps but thought i'd share as it seems to be working for us in preventing me having an idea of what it 'should' be.

  3. Personally, i think one key to Padrone's success as a Dominant man is that, while he isn't consumed by what others think of him, he did realize when he was newly involved in this lifestyle, that others could teach him a lot if he would simply listen. He was wise enough to watch and listen, and he took what resonated with him as "right" and combined it with who is is as a man. That is what has made him the wonderful Dominant that he is.

    It's the same thing i did as a submissive woman, actually. i didn't assume that because i have a naturally submissive personality that i would be a "perfect slave" or whatever. i've learned and grown, and changed, and a lot of what i assumed in the beginning of my "journey" is really a lot of bs, but a lot of it has shown itself to be truths that i live to this day.

    i do believe that submissive women tend to have a few similar traits, but one could say that about any group of women "lumped together". We tend to be very emotional, very analytical, have some form of insecurities that tend to make us have a degree of trust issues, and very definite personality traits, the most obvious one being our desire to please the man who shows us that we are worth more than we could ever believe without him in our lives.

    If a Dom understands those few things, and kind of applies them to his way of communicating (which i would tend to believe would be the most difficult thing to change after all those years of living "the other way"), then things will be harder in the short run, but far more fulfilling in the long run.

    i'm NOT one to give advice, and please, please don't think i hold myself or Padrone as examples of anything other than what works FOR US. But some things, i honestly believe, are common in the kinds of relationships we live.

    Y'all are great, and i admire you tremendously!

  4. I asked BG once what was the most important thing he learned from being a dom. He said, "patience".

    You're right. You are learning to see yourself all over again. And you're discovering that why you do or like certain things may not be at all for any reason you'd ever previously considered.

    It takes patience to get used to that new way of seeing yourself, it takes patience to understand where this new reaction came from, it takes patience to get re-acquainted with yourself AND with your partner.

    You are and have been endlessly patient with your children as they learn and grow. Now you two are changing and growing together as a couple. That's twice the amount of patience. (But one-hundred times the reward.)
    Hang in there!

  5. The problem with following advice of others is that every person is unique and when combined with another that couple is unique. That said, there are reoccurring themes and personality traits with D/s practitioners. When new I was confused, very.

    Maybe that's why I write my blog. To explain to myself that which I would have wished to know starting out.

  6. Sir J,
    I'll pass the word.

    D's s,
    We are working to figure out what works for us. Part of it is me watching my own thoughts to see where they are coming from, is it my mind or elsewhere? Of what I bring to him, he does a pretty good job of letting me know what he wants and ignoring the rest.

    It is my nature to think that information is good, it needs to be carefully considered, but that having information is better than not. I think you are absolutely right, people need to learn and listen. The qualities that led Padrone to learn this way, have to be the same ones that allow him to learn you so well. That makes you very lucky. And you are right too about the communication - that has been the hardest, but most important change.

    My husband is much more patient than I in some things (ok - lots of things). And thanks for the vote of confidence - I'm not sure I deserve the "endlessly patient with your children" praise - or at least, I imagine they would scoff at that.

    Missy n' B,
    I think I'm mostly still at the point with my blog of trying to formulate the questions. Some things I am starting to see and believe. It does help with that, and lets my husband see what I'm thinking. Thanks.

  7. Re: communication - two things Padrone taught me early on:

    1. Just because i have a right to say something, and WANT to say it, doesn't mean i *should* or *must* say it. (That one idea stops my mouth far more than anything else i have ever learned)

    2. How i say things is far more important than why i say them. What i mean is that people, including Padrone or my kids or my co-workers, or anyone else... react to what i say, and even when they find out *why* i say them, their initial emotional reaction is what they remember, even if they understand motivations later. So i watch how i say things far more closely now, and it really has changed all aspects of the communication in my life, for which i am eternally grateful to Padrone!

    Totally irrelevant to the point here, just kind of interesting i thought!